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To think my in laws should visit when it suits us?

(89 Posts)
bottleoffish Mon 04-Mar-13 17:58:01

My in laws live abroad and then travel from there to another country for most of the winter, every winter without fail, regardless of what else is happening in the family. That's obviously their prerogative.

I am due to have a baby (not my first) in October. When Dh told MIL yesterday she said that they would come and visit at the beginning of November then, before they go away for the winter.

Due to their previous laziness and rudeness and treating my Mum like their servant when they came to stay, as well as making my children from a previous marriage feel uncomfortable, I have told DH that they are not welcome to stay in the house any more, so would have to find a hotel whenever they stayed next.

However, DH will be working during the day after his paternity leave and so if they come at the start of November, ever they stay in a hotel, they will want to spend the days at out house and I just don't feel up to entertaining them with a two week old baby whilst trying to look after other children and trying to establish breast feeding. They will not help out at all and are very judgemental about any mess, so I will also feel pressured to keep the house spotless.

I've told DH that its best if they stay when he has time off work, although due to their plans over winter, this would mean they wouldn't see the baby until it is 4-5 months old. They didn't meet DD until she was 4 months old anyway and they have only seen her once other than that and she is now 21 months old. They are busy with their lives and that is fine of course, but I don't feel their grandchildren are a priority for them and because of that I don't see why I should put myself under stress just to keep them happy.


Goldmandra Tue 05-Mar-13 10:16:45

I like Lottie's approach too except I would finish by saying "you are welcome to come at Easter when......." therefore making it clear that they are not welcome to come in November. If you ask why not they may feel able to tell you why not.

Herrena Tue 05-Mar-13 10:45:35

I think lottie's approach is the way to go, but may I suggest some additions to the email?

'thanks for offering to come and help round the house and with dd after I have the new baby. It's really thoughtful but it's just not possible for us to commit to those dates. The new baby could be late and we just don't know what condition we'll be in at that point. The early days of breastfeeding were hard work last time and we've been told it will be similar this time, which means I will have to spend 99% of my time sitting and feeding. That's not going to leave any time for housework, cooking or even making a cup of tea! I would really prefer for you to come at Easter when DH will be available and it will be more of a holiday for you. Baby will be around 4 months old then and much more interactive, whereas the newborn stage is cute but they don't do much'.

I have more or less highlighted the changes, I think.

I think we can draft a suitable polite-yet-firm email for you if you give us a chance and then your wishes will be in the written recordwink

bottleoffish Tue 05-Mar-13 12:31:24


The email is an excellent idea, thank you.

I still haven't heard from DH and the more I think about it all, the more cross I am getting. There are so many awful things his parents have done in the past and he has always stood up for them even when they have hurt me and he will never stand up for me. I have never once been rude or even slightly off with them in the interests of good manners and keeping the peace, but I think I've just had enough of it now tbh. sad

Cakecrumbsinmybra Tue 05-Mar-13 12:49:56

Why be so diplomatic? Whilst it may cause less grief, in my experience people tend to carry on with the same annoying behaviour if no one suggests otherwise. Instead of saying you want it to be a holiday for them, just say its not convenient. That you'll be breastfeeding and not up for any visitors for a couple of months. And be firmer with your DH over this.

Emilythornesbff Tue 05-Mar-13 12:52:57

That's a good point cakecrumbs

soundevenfruity Tue 05-Mar-13 13:04:00

It is perfectly understandable to feel the way you do now. To act on it and cause a rift in the family is not. I were in your position with my first child and I know how you keep anger going while deep inside you know it's not right. The biggest YABU goes to mumsnetters that fan emotions of pregnant women completely out of proportions.

FryOneFatManic Tue 05-Mar-13 13:50:41

soundevenfruity so you're basically saying that the OP should just put up with the poor behaviour of the ILs? That her feelings are less important than trying to avoid a rift?

I believe the OP needs to think about what suits her now. The needs of the OP and OP's baby are the most important things now.

Inertia Tue 05-Mar-13 13:53:50

The suggestion to email PIL directly yourself is a good one (and copy DH in on it).Clearly DH is not even going to suggest to his parents that those dates are not suitable. The one thing I'd add is the specific dates when your DH is on holiday at Easter, just so there's no room for misunderstanding.

You don't have to do what your husband says. You certainly don't have to do what your ILs say.

olgaga Tue 05-Mar-13 14:51:56

In my view these visits by family from abroad can be incredibly stressful. They think it'll be lovely to "hang out", and treat you and your children as a kind of entertainment. I've had my share of it in the past, and it's a total pain. I think you are entitled to insist that when guests from DH's family are visiting, he has to be around to entertain them.

Other people in your home for prolonged periods is way too much work at the best of times, let alone when you've just had a baby.

Yfronts Tue 05-Mar-13 15:29:26

Have you emailed DH and IL's to say you can't do November? Why does it have to go through DH? You care just as capable.

Secondly if they do end up staying, don't host at all. You have a new baby. Sit round and feed your baby and relax. Let DH organise food and ask IL's to help themselves to food and drink.

Downandoutnumbered Tue 05-Mar-13 15:29:26

YANBU. The person who's just given birth and is trying to establish breastfeeding gets the final say over who comes to visit, especially if the other person isn't even going to be there! I agree with those who say if your DH won't stand up to them, you need to email them yourself.

Agree with Olgaga: this kind of visit is a nightmare even when you don't have a newborn.

DontmindifIdo Tue 05-Mar-13 15:55:06

Just to check, where will they be staying when they come to see SIL and the new baby? Is that far away from you? If so, you could add on the e-mail "However, if you are in the country anyway to see SIL, BIL and DN, do let us know the dates you'll be staying with them and we'll try to visit on the weekend when DH is off work, obviously that assumes both the new baby and I are fit to do the drive." Let SIL host you all, introduce the new baby, everyone's happy? (If it's more than 2 hour drive, feel free to ignore this suggestion)

bottleoffish Tue 05-Mar-13 17:12:37

Well it would seem that the in laws thing is now a bit of a moot point and that actually DH is a bit of a shit.

He hasn't answered my texts or calls today, although I know he's got them. Presumably he's not coming home tonight either. How fucking childish!!! I'm also at high risk of miscarriage and he knows this. I am furious that he would behave like this.

Goldmandra Tue 05-Mar-13 17:43:34

Oh bottle sad

Does he stay away often? Could it be that something has cropped up and he can't come up for air?

If not this seems like quite an overreaction to you not wanting to play host to his parents just after giving birth.

Have you sent the email?

olgaga Tue 05-Mar-13 18:31:24

Sad to hear if indeed he does have a major strop on over this.

I would just email the ILs anyway, get it off your chest and make sure they and your DH know what you will and won't tolerate.

You are pregnant, and have a toddler to care for. That's enough. You can't be running around after an adult who refuses to take responsibility.

It does sound as though there's a bit more going on OP. Do you usually have to be this accommodating to his moods? It all sounds rather one-sided.

HairyHandedTrucker Tue 05-Mar-13 19:00:13


HairyHandedTrucker Tue 05-Mar-13 19:02:47

your dh is being wet. you need to then your self they won't be welcome that early or at all if they are unkind to your older children! shock

HairyHandedTrucker Tue 05-Mar-13 19:04:45

if they live together they jointly decide who can stay in their home holly. so if she says no that's a no.

HairyHandedTrucker Tue 05-Mar-13 19:07:05

of any one who treated my children differently would not be allowed near any of them

LadyPessaryPam Tue 05-Mar-13 19:08:19

bottleoffish he sounds horrible. I would ascertain that he was indeed stropping first and then if he was I would ask him not to come home as you need some space from him to consider how you want to proceed. Do you have family that you can call on? I think all have got used to you rolling over and letting them have their own way. Time to call them out on this.

Jux Tue 05-Mar-13 19:13:09

Send the email direct to his parents.

Mostly, I would put up with quite a lot of crap and run about looking after ILs - well, I did - in the interests of keeping family harmony (and my dh would always leave me to it because he couldn't bear to be in the same room as his mum for more than 5 minutes and hated his step dad). So normally I would say you can't dictate entirely and compromises need to be found BUT

..... I do think that when you've just had a baby their convenience is irrelevant, especially as you know what it will cost you to accommodate it.

So send the email and let dh huff and puff. If he's so keen on the visit at that exact time then he can be there and do all the work. As he won't be there, it's down to you and if he wants to offload his parents onto you he needs to behave a darn sight better.

bottleoffish Tue 05-Mar-13 21:06:57

Thanks all, the replies really help as DH clearly still thinks I'm
In the wrong. He has text me now and says I am in the wrong for 'kicking off' about his Mums phone call and apparently making it clear I don't want to be with him if he speaks to his family, which is completely crazy as I have never said that at all and although we had a row about it, he started shouting at me when I tried to discuss it calmly with him. He's not coming back here tonight, although I don't want him here anyway.

I suspect his behaviour is an effort to control me and get me to change my mind about his parents coming, which I will not. I'm going to stop rolling over for any of them, I feel so angry right now about DH's selfish, thoughtless behaviour.

I haven't emailed my in laws as I don't really see the point tbh at the moment.

maddening Tue 05-Mar-13 21:20:04

Reply telling him not to be such a dick and he needs to sort out his priorities! Maybe not but the me that is angry for you would!

bottleoffish Tue 05-Mar-13 21:29:51

I've told him as much. He's going to bed now apparently.

It was my DS's birthday today too. sad

WhereYouLeftIt Tue 05-Mar-13 21:48:27

"It was my DS's birthday today too. sad"

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