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To hope it doesn't happen for my sister in law just yet...

(133 Posts)
pamplem0usse Fri 28-Dec-12 04:27:45

So my in laws are trying for a baby. they are also planning on going to a wedding next Christmas the other side of the world. They have extracted an offer from my mil to nanny for them if they have a baby by then.
I'm very cross that theyre prepared to take my dc much loved granny away from them at this time of year (they'll be 3 and 1).

MASSIVE backstory: my in laws have been trying for a baby without success for a little over two years. DH and I have tried desperately hard to be supportive (e.g. over the 'announcement' of the pregnancy of our 3mo). In return we get a constant barrage of unwanted parenting advice and open hostility. I know - but can never understand - it must be awful for her. But there is no excuse for:
1. Suggesting my bil takes home a long forgotten toy from my pil that my 2 yo loves 'if its his'
2. Ignores my children
3. Sent a frankly vile email to me last may having refused to see me because i was pregnanct. among my crimes: not asking her before getting pregnant; suggesting we go out for a drink to talk - apparently my lack of alcohol consumption wold have been rubbing it in that i was pregnant and she was not.
4. Sent vile email to mil suggesting if she wants a continuing relationship with her she needs to stop her childcare of my dd for two days a week while i worked.
5. Ignored my birthday. not even a text. Six weeks later we left mil at family gathering as didn't want a confrontation in front of extended family as sil

IceNoSlice Fri 28-Dec-12 06:57:21

Hey, I feel your pain with the night feeds. Snap.

I meant it when I said it sounds like you're dealing with this well in RL. Families- difficult, eh? Especially at this time of year. Din't let it get to you, just focus on your lovely DCs.

Northey Fri 28-Dec-12 06:58:20

The poor soul sounds twisted with grief. Christmas is a crappy time of year for those struggling with infertility - have a look at the Conception and Infertility boards here. Please just leave her alone to work it through as best she can.

The point that you put first, about your BIL's long lost toy, I'm willing to bet she isn't thinking about being mean to your son at all - she wants it for the child she wants to have.

We3bunniesOfOrientAre Fri 28-Dec-12 07:04:31

I can understand how you feel about SIL, although some of her comments could be re childcare being draining for your MIL. The grannies I see at toddler groups etc love seeing their GC, but do comment on how tiring it is, maybe she mentions this to BIL/SIL but not you.

My SIL/BIL have been trying unsuccessfully now for 4yrs, and are getting to an age where it is looking unlikely. We only see SIL once or twice a year (her choice they live just 10 mins from FIL and we tell them when we are coming up, we see more of BIL (DH'S DB). It is hard as although not openly antagonnistic, we are always on egg shells, especiallly as our dc ask us why they don't have children (thankfully not in front of them - unlike FIL). It will hopefully be better for you once they do have children, so if I were you I would be wishing it on.

In terms of Australia, it might be nice for MIL to go, I've never been and would swop a day babysitting for a free holiday, she will probably be PFB the rest of the time. Anyway due to passports etc they would probably need to concieve in next 2 months or so, even if they don't tell you until 12 weeks then you still have 6 months notice to make other plans, go on holiday or plan the best family Christmas ever. The children really won't remember it and you can make it exciting for them with SKYPE etc.

We3bunniesOfOrientAre Fri 28-Dec-12 07:13:52

Just re read and sounds as if we don't support our BIL/SIL, we would love them to have dc, but it can be hard in a tense situation when you have the dc and they don't, hence I can see how the OP might feel, esp as the SIL does sound as if she isn't coping well. However we only have to be in that position when we see/ talk to /think about them, they are in that position every single day, must be awful, I remember the pain of the negative tests etc, but it all goes when you have your baby, they live with that every day/week/month.

Fakebook Fri 28-Dec-12 07:20:33

Glad you realised ywbu.

Sokmonsta Fri 28-Dec-12 07:35:38

Yabu. My bil's wife cannot handle that we have 4 children while she sadly lost the only one they conceived earlier this year. She is 10 years older than I and bil had already had a vasectomy when they met (was reversed). While I think she is being unreasonable for cutting us out because we have children when she does not, both of us through the life choices we have made, at least initially, I can sympathise with her desire to have a child and feel awful that, despite thinking she is the most selfish creature ever and that a baby is just an accessory to her, she may never get to hold her own baby in her arms. She does not understand how I genuinely can feel this for her and feels I am rubbing it in to spite her that I fell pregnant relatively easily not once or even twice but 3 times.

It could well come to pass that sil falls pregnant this year and is hugely pregnant at the time of the wedding. She may not be able to go. Perhaps it would be kinder to stress the implications of such plans to conceive, what if she doesn't fall straight away, what if she doesn't have an easy pregnancy. Wouldn't she be better to either put off plans to conceive or perhaps consider not going to the wedding until nearer the time in case she does get pregnant and is then at a stage where she cannot travel. But emphasising you are looking forward to having a new niece/nephew.

Either way yab selfish wanting gp to yourself. Sooner or later you are going to have to share them. Part and parcel of siblings having children how dare they!

My sister had children before I. It was about 7 years before I did so dn1&2 had a good long run of being the only grandchildren. My parents often feel torn that they do not have the relationship with my children that they want because they are so entrenched in the lives of my sister and her children. It's not a fair position to put your children's grandparents in either.

WhereYouLeftIt Fri 28-Dec-12 07:57:49

I'm going to swim against the tide here I think.

I simply don't believe that personal unhappiness gives anyone carte blanche to make another person unhappy. So OP's SIL is having trouble conceiving? Very sad for her and her husband. No excuse whatsoever for being so shitty to the OP. I mean, really - telling their joint MIL that she must stop looking after OP's DC or she, SIL, won't have a relationship with MIL? How fucking spiteful is that? This grown woman is making the OP her whipping boy, and that is beyond unfair.

OP, stop pandering to this overgrown toddler. Call her on her behaviour, every damned time. "Did you mean to be so rude?" is a good catch-all phrase, but I'd be inclined to be blunter with her - "Will you still be this horrible to me when you conceive?" Stop being nice to her, stop trying to smooth things over - it can't be done. Get your DH to tell his brother that he needs to have a word too. There's been too much pussyfooting around this spiteful bitch for too long. I suspect she'd still be a cow if they'd conceived on first attempt, she'd just be using a different stick to beat the OP with.

merlottits Fri 28-Dec-12 08:15:25


I've been the SIL in this situation. TTC and then fertility treatment while my SIL (we are married to brothers) popped out 2 babies effortlessly (whether or not it was effortless is irrelevant, that's how it always looks, eh?).
I couldn't go to family functions, actively avoided them. They would make me vomit, literally retch and retch - some extreme stress reaction I expect. I cried and cried and cried I couldn't believe life could be that unfair. What had I done differently in life to deserve a life of no babies? It was hell, but always extremely awkward for the whole family.

I've since had 2 girls. We have all discussed it family and I have 'apologised' but truthfully unless you know what it's like you haven't got a clue.

Have some empathy, sympathy and patience. The poor women is suffering, she is in absolute AGONY. Each month of not conceiving feels like another bereavement. Don't ever wish for 'another couple of months' for them to wait. That makes my skin crawl with your insensitivity.

If I was you I would rather granny was gone next Christmas before your children are any older, as they are too young to miss her too much. Future Christmases will be more important.

RandomMess Fri 28-Dec-12 08:35:57

Glad you realised ywbu.

Now I can say how tough it sounds dealing with your SIL, from what you've written she sounds a bit unhinged! How long have they been together - I wonder if it weren't about the dc there would be something else she would be using to portray her jealousy of you?

Jemma1111 Fri 28-Dec-12 08:44:16

OP, because you are so worked up over something that may not even happen, IMO you sound like you don't want your SIL to EVER have a baby.

I believe you may secretly enjoy having 'one over her'.

Megatron Fri 28-Dec-12 08:50:15

I think you are being unfair but you obviously realise that. It sounds like your MIL loves you all very much and very probably feels caught in the middle of everything which is a bit unfair on her.

However I also agree that no one has the right to treat you like shit and expect you not to say anything but do bear in mind that she is probably crippled with grief every month when she realises that, yet again, she is not pregnant. It messes with your head.

I can say what you are saying to a degree whereyouleftit about not allowing the SIL to treat the OP badly but saying something like "Will you still be this horrible to me when you conceive?" to someone having difficulty conceiving is beyond cruel IMO.

MrsLyman Fri 28-Dec-12 08:50:35

I'm not sure why behaving like a total bitch because you're having problems conceiving is seen as acceptable behaviour tbh. There are lots of ways to be fulfilled in life without children, and if you like children enough to have them why cut people with children out of your life?

Jamdoughnutfiend Fri 28-Dec-12 08:54:04

YABU - but she sounds like a hag, so is somewhat understandable. i actually
feel sorry for your MIL as she will be in the no win situation.

fedupofnamechanging Fri 28-Dec-12 08:57:20

I'm with WhereYouLeftIt on this.

If someone else was criticising my parenting, telling me that I should have consulted them before getting pg, threatening to cut off contact with mil because she looks after my dc etc, she would get a huge 'fuck off' from me.

Agree that being unhappy doesn't give anyone the right to behave like a nasty bitch.

OP, you need to stop pandering to this shit. Stop seeing her and stop interacting with her. Let mil sort out her own arrangements. You may well have to share mil once sil has a baby, but that's normal. In the meantime stay away from all discussions with her.

Theicingontop Fri 28-Dec-12 09:03:49

Having been on the receiving end myself while I was pregnant, of a lady who could not conceive, I must say it is an awful situation to be in. It's a constant battle to remain civil, knowing that she's only saying/doing these things because she desperately wants a child, and you are the embodiment of what she desires, and will take it out on you.

But you do have to remain civil. You can't engage, because no matter how vile she is to you, you will look like a dickhead. I just kept my tongue in my head, and kept imagining myself to be in her position. I'd probably be the same.

WhereYouLeftIt Fri 28-Dec-12 09:04:56

Yes Megatron, it is cruel - it is meant to be. This woman's cruelty towards the OP is going unchecked by all, and that needs to stop. And if it takes a verbal slap in the face to pull her up short, so be it. She is trying to suck the happiness in her children out of the OP. She is trying to strong-arm the MIL into isolating the OP. She would be reaping what she has been sowing for years.

Megatron Fri 28-Dec-12 09:18:41

But I just don't see how saying something like that would make the OP any better than her SIL, do you know what I mean? Like I said I agree that the OP needn't put up with so much shit from her SIL but if she is deliberately cruel back I think that could cause problems with the rest of her family, like her MIL or her DH. Then she would be the bad guy.

Cabrinha Fri 28-Dec-12 09:31:16

At least on the score of the Xmas wedding, you are being UTTERLY unreasonable. You don't own the MIL! And sounds like you've had PLENTY of childcare from her.
I can't believe you've got your knickers in a twist over the other brother maybe getting a "turn" of his own mother, when it's far from even being definite!
Most unreasonable one I've read in ages!

peaceandlovebunny Fri 28-Dec-12 09:34:56

the sister in law is being vile, not the o p. its not her fault if the sil hasn't conceived.

WhereYouLeftIt Fri 28-Dec-12 09:44:23

I do know what you mean Megatron, but it's not about maintaining the moral high ground and being 'better' than the SIL. IMO, there is something in cruelty that is addictive, and there is something in acceptance of the cruelty that goads the cruel - in this case, OP's SIL. When she is cruel, she is trying to destroy hurt the OP, and the OP's attempts to smooth things over are likely just going to make her feel condescended to - 'ah bless, SIL is suffering, let it go, be the bigger person'. That is likely to enrage her, make her feel her sorrow more keenly, and to make her behave ever more cruelly.

By the OP being cruel in return, SIL is not being patted on the head and made to feel small. She is being recognised as an adult who is being called to account for her twattish behaviour. If there's anything to her, SIL might even feel a bit of shame. Regardless, she will have been set a boundary. Right now nobody is calling her on it, and she is raging around in a blind fury. Not good for her, not good for her whipping boy the OP.

MaryChristmaZEverybody Fri 28-Dec-12 09:47:06

ffs, you have your children, your sil doesn't have kids. Therefore you can simply stay away and enjoy your family, you don't have to interact with her at all.

Back off, leave her alone, your posts make you sound smug and childish.

As for wishing that she wouldn't get pregnant, for any reason angry. That is unforgivable, and trumps any real or imaginary bitchy thing she may or may not have said or done.

teacher123 Fri 28-Dec-12 09:57:26

I completely see that the SIL is behaving impossibly towards you. However YABVU to state that you hope that she delays conceiving and that you don't want to share your MIL at Christmas. You cannot control the behaviour of other people around you, you cannot demand to spend every single high day and holiday with a particular group of people because you want to. Your children have no more 'right' to a family Christmas than your (as yet unborn) DN. I remember being internally devastated that our best friends first baby was due on our wedding day, and that they thought they wouldn't be able to come. Bt I congratulated them wholeheartedly and cried on the way home. (As it turned out, baby arrived two weeks early and they were able to come anyway!) but the principle is the same, you have no right to dictate how they organise their family.

quirrelquarrel Fri 28-Dec-12 10:03:44

one £4 mug. they earn over 100k between them
this kind of sums the OP up, sorry. Unreasonable!

OComeAllYeFaithBaby Fri 28-Dec-12 10:07:51

Yanbu to be upst by some of her behaviour.

As someone who TTC'd for 2 years 8 months before we conceived, YABVU to wish she doesn't conceive yet!

evilgiraffe Fri 28-Dec-12 10:11:41

My DH and I have been TTC for three years. The idea that anyone would wish the sort of heartbreak and desperate hope we live with on a daily basis on to anyone is breathtaking.

YAB extremely U and downright cruel with it. SIL is clearly a bit unhinged by the whole TTC thing and is also behaving unreasonably. Both OP and SIL sound unpleasant, selfish, and spiteful. Both of you should grow up and stop behaving like toddlers.

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