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wrt moody people - genuinely don't know

(14 Posts)
moffat Fri 16-Sep-11 06:35:47

MIL can be lovely and can sometimes be moody and bad-tempered without actually saying anything. She was over last week and dh and I were tiptoeing around her she was not being her usual self - uncommunicative, not interested in anything I had to say, very very down. I asked dh if we should ask her what's wrong - he avoids confrontation and believes that if something was wrong she should have said so herself.

I tend to speak to her daily and called a couple of times - sounded really grumpy - but she has not called at all so after a while I stopped as well.

Anyway, this week was our anniversary and she came over with presents and a card and was completely normal. I was surprised as she was completely different and made no mention of her earlier bad mood. AIBU and angry that firstly she comes over and inflicts her bad mood on the whole house and then when she's more cheerful expects me to forget everything without an explanation. She does not have mental health issues and is not bi-polar.

antsypants Fri 16-Sep-11 07:19:29

Maybe she was feeling better because of spending time with your family? Either way you can't insist on people only visiting when they are in a mood you approve of. Perhaps if you had asked her what was wrong she may have opened up.

aldiwhore Fri 16-Sep-11 07:24:58

YABU totally childish. Sorry. Did you ask her if she was okay?

Sometimes people ARE down, she wasn't rude to you, she just wasn't in the mood to 'hear what you had to say', she could have had something on her mind that she didn't want to discuss but couldn't shake off.

Your DH is non-confrontational? Sounds more like unthinking, he didn't ask her if she was alright!

She came over with gifts for your anniversary, oh the evil witch, AND she had the audacity to have shaken her previous bad mood! Why on earth would she mention it if you hadn't had the decency to ask her about it in the first place? She doesn't owe you an explanation, its not all about you.

You are the one that 'should' say something NICE, you dont' have to but you could have said "I noticed you weren't your usual cheery self the other day I hope you're okay".....

CailinDana Fri 16-Sep-11 07:25:18

I can't stand that sort of behaviour. I know everyone feels a bit shit at times but IMO that doesn't give you free rein to make everyone else feel like shit too. If I'm having a moody day I just tell everyone I'm with that I feel bad and that I won't be too chatty but just to ignore me and I'll be alright later on. It's basic courtesy I think. When he was younger my DH had a tendency to be like your MIL - he would storm around the house, be snappy etc and I told him in no uncertain terms that I wouldn't put up with it. He didn't get the message right away but over time it got better and now he very very rarely gets in a mood or if he does he generally tells me he's in a mood and doesn't snap at me.

It's harder to deal with when it's your MIL. I'd say the best thing to do is if she does seem down, ask if she's ok, if she says she's fine take that as gospel and then ignore ignore ignore.

CailinDana Fri 16-Sep-11 07:27:20

I think it's fine to be in a bad mood but acting like a child and being uncommunicative is really silly - if you're in a mood, say it, then behave as nicely as you can. Don't inflict your mood on other people.

Iggly Fri 16-Sep-11 07:27:53


I would have asked what was wrong - some people don't realise how their moods can affect others. Her behaviour was childish IMO.

Mitmoo Fri 16-Sep-11 07:28:29

I so know what you mean OP it can be very hard to deal with and extremly trying. It could be that she gets depressed and just can't rally herself around but them pulls out of it until another bout comes along. I'd ask her if you can be friendly about it if she was ok and you were worried about her.

If you still feel angry just leave it as it could end up in a row.

moffat Fri 16-Sep-11 09:28:52

thank you all - I was thinking that I might be overly sensitive and self-absorbed. I just think it's really unfair to visit someone and then basically ignore them and create a mad atmosphere in their house, particularly when it is the one person who does call her and listen to all her news with interest.

She has had bad moods in the past and I have asked her about it - it's usually a complaint about dh or SIL.

moffat Fri 16-Sep-11 09:31:53

aldiwhore I know what you're saying it's just that deep down the gifts etc did not make me feel happy - I would rather be treated with courtesy and if I have done something to upset I would rather people told me in a rational way. She is usually very direct and treats our home as her own (has a key).

dweezle Fri 16-Sep-11 09:32:36

YANBU - my MIL was like this, and one of BILs also. Petulant, childish, had people tiptoeing round them asking if they were alright. Not behaviour I would accept in a child and in an adult is incredibly unattractive.

With MIL I learned very quickly just to breezily acknowledge her, chat generally and ignore her bad behaviour. BIL is a twat so I just ignore.

2BoysTooLoud Fri 16-Sep-11 09:48:25

Oh I hate drama queen moodiness/ sulking. YANBU. You can't win with moody people because if you ask what the matter is they may tell you or they may continue to strop about.
I actually think it is a form of bullying and very boring for everyone else.
I too would find it hard to pretend everything was fine when she decided to finish playing power games and snap herself out of it.

aldiwhore Fri 16-Sep-11 10:56:51

I guess it depends on whether she was actually rude to you, or whether she was just quiet and not quite with it. I have moods where other people's ramblings just don't interest me, and whilst I'm never rude, sometimes I can't pretend to be interested.

Will say though that I tend to stay out of the way when I feel like this.

I still wouldn't make an issue out of it. Especially if she's usually lovely, that's her 'normal' state, she's human we all have days where we're not really engaging.

flicktheswitch Fri 16-Sep-11 13:12:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

moffat Fri 16-Sep-11 14:30:24

aldi... I think it is rudeness, for example when I mentioned anyone from my side of the family she totally blanked me....did not say goodbye when she left...if I came into the room she moved to another room....and I like a moron was trying to make conversation.

flicktheswitch definitely not menopausal. She has been like this before.Most of the time she is fine, if a little self-centred eg if I tell her something about dcs she immediately talks about her other gcs, and just in general sees the world mostly in relation to herself. She can be a great help and very kind sometimes but she does have a temper as well.

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