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To be absolutely furious with my MIL?

(23 Posts)
Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 19:59:04

Long story short: DH's Nanna is 96, she is very frail and lives in a home just round the corner from us and has done for about 6 years. MIL lives in Spain,been there about 40 years, Nanna used to live there too, but came back for health and family reasons 10 years ago. MIL just doesn't do responsibility, never has. She palmed DH off on Nanna when he was growing up as often as she could, always chose relationships over DH and her DGC. She has come to the UK for Easter with the new partner, and is moving around visiting his family (here for 2 weeks)
coming here for 48 hours before flying home. Nanna misses MIL so much, she's been feeling a bit poorly and down recently and would have loved to have seen MIL for Easter. I found out today that MIL is spending this
weekend an hours drive away and couldn't be
bothered to come and see her Mum and my DH who has recently been diagnosed with MS!
I am so incredibly fucked off with her on Nanna's and DH's behalf!!! The bloody woman always bleats on about how sad it is that she doesn't see more of her family! Surely at 96 everyday with Nanna is precious and Easter is a family time? I have to see her next weekend and after 23 years of keeping my mouth shut, I so want to say something!!! Should I just shut up in case it upsets Nanna?

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 20:01:47

Apologies for the weird paragraphs, on my phone....

CocacolaMum Sun 31-Mar-13 20:03:07

YANBU and I would find it very difficult not to say something. Surely she should be cherishing any time she has with her mum given the age involved and wanting to offer support to her son!?

to change the subject slightly, I have an aunt who was diagnosed with MS 15 years ago and the treatment is really VERY good these days. Best wishes to you and DH

Purple2012 Sun 31-Mar-13 20:03:31

Dont say anything. You will only upset Nanna. I have a similar problem with my nan. My horrible aunt tried to get money out of her, even taking her into a busy city centre to draw money out. I have been able to put a stop to this as I now have control of her money. But I keep my mouth shut as my nan is too old to be upset by it. When my nan no longer with us I won't have anything to do with my aunt. Biting my Tongue so I dont upset my nan is worth it.

Cromwell44 Sun 31-Mar-13 20:06:16

You can't change this women. You say she's always put herself and her relationships before her mother and her son/your DH. YANBU to be furious but it won't change her and being furious just impacts on you and your family. Don't expect anything and learn to disconnect.
If you want to say something to her about her behavior, go ahead but don't let it impact on those around you that you care about.

parakeet Sun 31-Mar-13 20:07:22

YANBU. To save yourself an embolism why not call her up and point out her mum would appreciate a visit?

digerd Sun 31-Mar-13 20:13:48

I'm afraid so, for 96 year-old Nanna's sake. Don't suppose DH is particularly looking forward to seeing his mum. She sounds like a selfish drama queen who just puts on an act of missing her family , but her actions say it all.

Nanna is lucky to have you as a gd -in-law. No matter how her DD has treated her she still loves her unconditionally as a mother should.
I would feel the same as you, but would definitely not say anything.
Try to feel happy for nanna.

HollyBerryBush Sun 31-Mar-13 20:22:31

Is there a reason Nanas daughter has distanced herself? Things are rarely what they seem.

Jestrin Sun 31-Mar-13 20:24:36

YANBU Nanna is 96 and the very least your MIL could do is pop in to say hello to her.

CombineBananaFister Sun 31-Mar-13 20:26:31

Normally I would say there's no point saying anything as it won't achieve anything BUT it might make you feel a lot better whether it's pointless/mature or not. Mil sounds like a selfish madam and it's maybe about time someone called her out on it, as long as your nanna won't be hurt by it.
You sound lovely and caring, I really wish more people would treat the elderly like this. Tough shit if she gets a cob on about it, it clearly plays on your mind so instead of festering with the unfairness of it just mention it. Doesn't have to be a big drama or even impolite - the facts will do, they speak for themselves

MumOfMissy Sun 31-Mar-13 20:35:35

It could be that if she hasn't seen her mum for a long time she might be too afraid to go and see her. She may be afraid her mum has deteriorated badly, or that her mum may chastise her for not going more often. Perhaps you could offer to go with her to see Nanna? Also just extend an invitation to visit you and DH. At least then you have done your best for Nanna and DH. Don't say anything more, it could cause upset to those you care about.

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 20:36:28

Holly - MIL is seriously selfish. She and Nanna have never fallen out. MIL has always done what is best for MIL. Over the years it has taken my breath away time and time again. Nanna is truly the sweetest, kindest person I have ever met - never an unkind word to say about anyone.This is one of the reasons I'm so upset this time - TBH at 96 you may not be around much longer and MIL just doesn't seem to grasp this. My DM died a year ago next Wednesday and I want to shake MIL and tell her how lucky she is to still have her DM and to value each and every opportunity to spend time with her.
Wise words from everyone - lots to think about, still undecided.

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 20:43:08

MumOfMissy - MIL Skypes with Nanna every Sunday from our house and Nanna would never chastise MIL fir anything - seriously. She also knows that there's an open invitation to stay here, which we often remind her of. You're all nice people who are rightly pointing out possibilities but after all this time I don't care what MIL's reasons are, I just worry for Nanna and DH. On balance I'm thinking I will say something but well away from Nanna.

MumOfMissy Sun 31-Mar-13 20:53:33

Hi OP,
I encountered similar behaviour towards both my own Nannas; one of her sons refused to fly back from his holiday when she had a stroke and she died in hospital after begging is Grandchildren to being him home. My other Nannas son put her in a home, moved into her house and never visited her. He said it would upset him too much. Eventually I persuaded him to go with me, just once. Nanna kept asking me "where did you find him?". It was heartbreaking.

I understand your anger at MIL. However if you argue with her. Would that mean the end of Nannas weekly skypes? And perhaps that your DH will never see his mum again?

Put them both first. If you do say anything to MIL, let it be non confrontational and simply stress how much Nanna and DH would love to see her.

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 21:00:12

MumOfMissy - good advice. I was thinking along the lines of a bit of a throwaway comment that it was such a shame that we couldn't have spent Easter as a family, especially as she was only just up the road....
I was never going to have a blazing row with her. TBH, I think she will gloss over it and make excuses, but it will make me feel better.

digerd Sun 31-Mar-13 21:00:29

I have just realised that as your nanna is 96, then MIL must be a in her 60s or late 50s. Shame on her.
I wish my DM had got to 96. She died 8 months before my DH , she was 83 and I was 52 and needed her so much to have her in my life.
She was just like your nanna, very sweet and never had a bad word to say about anyone.

Really it is for your DH to say something to his DM on the quiet.
Sorry you lost your DM a year ago.

CandidaDoyle Sun 31-Mar-13 21:01:02

YANBU to be upset with your MIL. My father treats my elderly grandfather in a similar way. It's caused a lot of hurt and anguish in the family, to say the least.


MumOfMissy Sun 31-Mar-13 21:09:21

Lara2 If you say "Its a shame you cant" then it already sounds like she's not going to come. Twist it around and make it a positive invitation: eg "Seeing as you're just up the road, it would be wonderful for us to spend time together as a family, we don't get the chance very often and Nanna and DH would be so happy to see you, even for an hour or two."

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 21:36:52

digerd - MIL is in her early 70's. You're right, shame on her.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 31-Mar-13 22:03:41

You won't change her but when you say you have to see her next weekend, what happens if you don't?
Do you want to see your MIL?

In your shoes, I'd be urgently busy when she calls at your house and make sure DH was at the Nannas home (is she is a Residential Home?)
Then MIL would have a choice of visiting the home or driving away (a wasted journey might make her realise she's not the centre of the Universe)

my DSis lives in NZ and came over for 3 weeks but managed to avoid 99% of the family visits. She spent less than 24 hours with me because she was visiting friends in London. And 10 days somewhere very remote off the coast.
She didn't see Aunts, Grandmother.
But that's just her hmm

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 22:34:48

MIL is staying in a guest house about 5 minutes drive away - she refused the offer of staying here. I'm going out on Saturday night, a long standing invitation to a 50th birthday. Nanna had arranged for her niece and partner to visit on Sunday and has asked me to book a table for lunch for all of us, MIL included. So, sadly, I don't really have a choice but to see MIL or really upset Nanna.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 31-Mar-13 23:07:51

Ah, so you've not got an option, you need to do it for your DH and Nanna.
It sounds like it's a family dynamic that's gone on since your DH was a boy.

At least if you're all at a family lunch your MIL will see Nanna.
But yes, I agree with everyone on here, it's probably best to suck it up and keep a calm atmosphere.
What does your Nannas neice have to say? Is she aware what's going on?

Lara2 Sun 31-Mar-13 23:42:25

No, the niece has no idea. Obviously I won't say anything at all at lunch - time to keep the atmosphere calm and keep quiet.

At the end of the day it's MIL's loss isn't it? Just very sad for Nanna and DH.

Thanks everyone - feel better now I've talked it through.

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