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To wish DH and DM hadn't argued on DD2's 4th Birthday?

(124 Posts)
PurpleLostPrincess Fri 02-Sep-11 19:20:48

DD2 is fine and totally oblivious to it, so I guess there's no harm done, but there was an atmosphere and frankly I'm furious with the pair of them and I've told them that!!!

DH often goes around the house with no top on if it's hot. He has a beer belly (t-total now, this was from years ago and he doesn't eat very healthily these days), and my Mum has made it clear on a few occassions that she finds it disrespectful and gross and has asked him to put his top on when they come round to visit. Last time they visited, they had my Great Aunt and Uncle with them from Canada and he was just about to go up for a shower. My mum wouldn't talk to him until he had showered and put a top on, she was embarrassed and 'revolted' that he would disrespect her. We had a bit of a discussion about it a few days later, he apologised but made the point that he should be allowed to dress any way he likes in his own house. He said he wouldn't do it again...

Fast forward to today. It's DD2's 4th birthday. She got a wendy house that we had been constructing all day in the heat - DH had his top off because he was boiling hot, sweaty etc. I knew it would be an issue so knowing my parents would be coming around 3.30, I asked him if he could please put a top on when they arrived. He refused and said no, it's hot and it's his house - if Mum doesn't like it tough!

Mum arrived, saw him in the garden then decided to sit inside as she doesn't want to be around him when he's not fully dressed.

We were just about to light the candles on the cake, gathered all the visitors into the lounge. DH asked if he should come in - I said if he put a top on, yes! He refused again... I lit the candles in the kitchen, unbeknown to me, DH slipped into the lounge and hid in the corner. Having been told this, Mum refused to come into the lounge as she didn't want to be near him.

So, she missed the blowing out of the candles! DH came out to the kitchen, belly on show, and asked Mum why she hadn't come into the lounge. She spoke to him like a 5 year old and with venom she told him "we've talked about this, you know how much it upsets me when you don't put a top on!". DH responded that he keeps to her rules when he is in her house and it should work both ways, then went back in the garden to continue building the wendyhouse. Mum burst into tears. I was making tea and told her that they have both over-reacted and that normally I could see her point, but he's working and it's hot today... She stormed out crying and went home. My Dad stayed a little while longer but didn't talk to DH or say goodbye to him. I mentioned to my Dad that I'm stuck in the middle as I can see both sides, they have both over-reacted - he just said 'welcome to my world'!

I'm fuming at both of them - Mum has been texting me, DH and I have had a row. Mum reckons that he never makes any effort for her, this isn't true as she only has to click her fingers to have a job done and he will do it. At the same time, DH has a point too.

I know she has issues with his MH problems, she always has done, but I feel this is over the top. She refuses to make allowances for his issues (he's agoraphobic and so struggles to do things like go out for family meals), but expects him to bow to her every whim.

Having said that, she is a different generation and truly takes offence to a man not wearing a top...

They have both apologised to me but insist that they don't want anything more to do with each other. How can they not see that puts me in the middle!?

I'm going around in circles!!! I'm going to make a cat with DD2 as she got a mister maker set as one of her pressies, as long as she has a good day, that's all that matters I guess.

WoofToYouTooLady Fri 02-Sep-11 19:23:36

a man with no top on in public - gross

in his own home - no prob

I think your Mum is BU

Andrewofgg Fri 02-Sep-11 19:25:24

Your DM should mind her own business. And married people's first loyalty should be to each other and the DCs with their own families further back.

Oakmaiden Fri 02-Sep-11 19:26:34

Frankly, they are both being unreasonable - but I think your mother more so than your husband.

It is his house, he wasn't going around nude, just not wearing a top, and your mother was acting extremely disrespectfully herself.

Yes, he could have gone and put on a top - and my husband probably would have to not cause problems, but frankly your mother has no right to expect him to on her say so.

If I were you I would say to my husband that I agree with him completely, and that I thought my mother was behaving very badly.

Horrible for you to be caught in the middle though.

belgo Fri 02-Sep-11 19:26:36

It sounds like your mum has a real issue with him. A man without a top on in his own house is generally considered acceptable. Is she fattist?

zookeeper Fri 02-Sep-11 19:27:57

They both sound very childish. Good luck!

TheFeministsWife Fri 02-Sep-11 19:28:00

Your mum is BU, and I would totally back your DH on this. It's his house, it was a hot day and he was outside building a wendy house, it's not as if he was walking around in his bloody underwear! Hell in weather like this I wish I could walk around topless!

worraliberty Fri 02-Sep-11 19:30:19

I'm sorry but your Mum sounds like a proper Drama Queen

lazylula Fri 02-Sep-11 19:30:49

I think your mum is BU! And sso are you as you seem more concerned about the fact that your mum missed the cake than you were about your dh. He is in his own home and I think your mum is being very rude!

Oakmaiden Fri 02-Sep-11 19:30:59

I was just thinking how I would react if my mother in law came round to visit and asked my to - I dunno - "cover up properly" if I was wearing shorts and a crop top for example (which I wouldn't anyway, but thinking hypothetically). I would completely ignore her, and would expect my husband to support me by making it clear to her that she was unreasonable and that she couldn't expect to dictate to me what I wear in my own home.

birdsofshoreandsea Fri 02-Sep-11 19:31:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Pandemoniaa Fri 02-Sep-11 19:32:54

Are they both 5?

Only it strikes me that there's absolutely no attempt to compromise here and all the while the pair of them insist on being so pig-headed you will be stuck with the resulting dramas.

As it happens I think it is reasonable to receive visitors in a slightly better state than hot, sweaty and bare beer-bellied. Equally, your mother has absolutely no need to behave like a hysterical Victorian maiden at the sight of a man without a top on.

If both of them could use a little respect, the situation could be resolved.

worraliberty Fri 02-Sep-11 19:35:04

This is particularly sad....*DH slipped into the lounge and hid in the corner*

He had to 'slip in' and 'hide' in his own lounge to watch his own DD blow her candles out to try and prevent your Mum throwing a hissy fit and bursting into tears?

blackeyedsusan Fri 02-Sep-11 19:35:42

Your mum is not being unrreasonable to not stay around when dh is topless, but should have compromised for the candles. she should not talk to your dh in a disrespectful tone.

it would be better if h had put on the shirt for the candles and not made guests feel unwelcome/uncomfortable.

they were both being a bit childish in my opinion, though I can see both of their points of view and yes you are stuck in the middle. probably best to take dd and visit your mum for a bit til they can come to a compromise.

LindyHemming Fri 02-Sep-11 19:38:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PurpleLostPrincess Fri 02-Sep-11 19:39:48

belgo definitely not, she's certainly not thin and I'm 100% sure that's not the issue! But thank you anyways...

Yes she does have issues with him, it's a massive can of worms but to cut a long story short, she doesn't think he 'supports' me enough or in the right ways. I'm an only child and I have to say we wouldn't be anywhere without their support over the years, either financially or emotionally. They are there for us 100%, but I have taken issue in the past as it does seem it comes with strings sometimes.

She works extremely hard running her own business. My dad has got too old and forgetful to support her so I've been taking over from him and I do the invoicing and help out 2-3 days per week. I feel this is my way of paying back all the support they have given us over the years and I want to support my parents. DH was meant to have DD2 in the holidays when playschool was shut but has had a breakdown after his mum died, making it hard and I've often taken DD1 with me. Mum thinks he is taking advantage of his illness and doesn't understand why he isn't working. He has had this all his life, it's not as if he is pretending hmm

PurpleLostPrincess Fri 02-Sep-11 19:40:22

Oh wow, lots of posts in a short amount of time! Will read now...

belgo Fri 02-Sep-11 19:41:38

I was just wondering if she would have the same issue with him if he was young and toned, especially as you say she finds him gross.

PurpleLostPrincess Fri 02-Sep-11 19:48:50

Actually, that is a good point belgo, I wonder if that would be the case now that you mention it!

Part of his depression is that his personal hygeine leaves a lot to be desired. I don't go near him for days sometimes because he stinks of bio and only showers once or twice a week. If he uses deoderant it blocks his pores and he gets these gigantic boils/spots under his arms. Logic would say to shower more but it takes a few days of nagging him sometimes to get him to do it. Having said that, I've given up nagging lately, I don't want to be a nag and I'm not his mum. When he has showered we're very tactile and I love it when he is clean shaven - he knows this so there's no point in me going on about it.

DesperatelySeekingSedatives Fri 02-Sep-11 19:50:00

Your DH was being childish and stubborn... but I'd probably be the same tbh if someone was so rude and disrespectful to me in my own home. Your mother is behaving like a brat. If my mum spoke to my DP the way your mum speaks to your DH I'd tell her she wasn't welcome to come round until she changed her shitty attitude.

Your DC must squirm when grandma starts acting like this. sad

StrandedBear Fri 02-Sep-11 19:50:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PurpleLostPrincess Fri 02-Sep-11 19:52:03

The point I forgot to make there (got a bit carried away!) is that Mum refuses to accept this as a reason for not showering etc. and finds it offensive.

Thank you all for your thoughts, I love mn!

PurpleLostPrincess Fri 02-Sep-11 19:54:39

Interesting you should say that DSS, DS (17) ran out to the car to make sure she was OK and told me he was pissed off with DH (his step dad) for making her cry. He was there when I asked DH to put a top on earlier in the day though.

She's been quite uptight lately, I even had a row with her last week which is rare these days. It used to happen all the time but has been quiet for a few years... I'm now wondering why this is...

ladyintheradiator Fri 02-Sep-11 19:54:50

Wow, this sounds totally mad. They both sound appallingly rude. Not sure I can get on side with the blowing out of candles being a big deal but maybe I'm just a bit unsentimental about birthdays.

onemoreminute Fri 02-Sep-11 19:55:40

Your mum is being unreasonable its your dh house. You should have back him up, its sad he felt he had to sneek in to see HIS daughter blow out her candles.

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