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If you are a MIL, help me understand this crazy behaviour!

(186 Posts)
Wishwehadgoneabroad Sun 14-Apr-13 11:34:42

In a nutshell..

MIL now not speaking to me at all because I have 'ruined' her day.

Her day being my wedding day!!

Basically, we (DH to be and I!) want a very low key, no kids, short church wedding with a short, civilised meal after the event. The only child coming is our own (small baby)

Apparently, I am selfish, mean and 'playing games' because I am not putting family first and inviting everyone from her side of the family. The kicker, we are not inviting DH's baby nephew who is 'her world' and should be the focus of attention at her son's wedding!!

I have been polite and put her with her crazy ways over the last 4 years. Last night, she tipped me over the edge and I told her exactly what I thought - which pretty much ended in, 'My day, my way..don't really care whether you approve of our wedding plans or not, come, don't come, it's your call, but please don't dictate to me how to celebrate my wedding day'

So, AIBU or is she? And is this salvageable??!! grin

Finola1step Sun 14-Apr-13 11:36:18

Well done.

NewlywedUpTheDuff Sun 14-Apr-13 11:41:02

Like you said its your day, and if her son wants the same day as you let him deal with her. Not your problem.

YoniMcShoni Sun 14-Apr-13 11:44:19

SIBU -but you already know this. wink

The problem is how to deal with her meltdown which will surely occur now you have stood up to her.

I am tempted to say though that if this is the first time you have blown up at her despite previous provocation then this might be a turning point and you could find she is much better behaved around you in future.

But it does depend on the previous relationship you had .

Plus, what was your STB H doing/saying during the conversation? If he wasnt present what does he say now? Is this a common type of demand she places on you and others . IS the nephew ' her world'?

If this is totally out of the blue then maybe she is stressed about something else entirely and the wedding just brought it all out. But if its par for the course then you may just have to distance yourself from her on a day to day basis .Keep things as polite as you can for the familys sake and just get on with the wedding your way.

Oh and congratulations . grin

DeadWomanWalking Sun 14-Apr-13 11:45:16

YANBU, well done! Stick to your guns, if she wants to come, then come. If not, well she's cutting her nose off to spite her face.

I had something similar at my wedding, although it was my family. We had a very small wedding (10 people), and only wanted DSD and DH's nephew there as the only children there. Both my mum and nan had massive tantrums because we weren't inviting my huge family. My nan decided not to come at all, and my mum only came to the registry office. She decided she couldn't possibly sit in a restaurant (we only had a meal, no party) for the afternoon with my dad (they were recently divorced). So she went home and cried, some how this was my fault. hmm

Keep standing up for yourself.

crushedintherush Sun 14-Apr-13 11:52:09

Congratulations wishwe smile

YADNBU. Great that you stood up to her. She sounds a little on the narcissistic side, tbh.

As another poster already said, keep out of her way on the day.

thanks thanks thanks thanks thanks thanks thanks thanks thanks

Wishwehadgoneabroad Sun 14-Apr-13 11:57:03

Issues have been brewing for a while, but i've been keeping my mouth shut and just nodding and smilling! (about lots of things)

I think my main issue is that she has shown zero interest in the wedding at all - until the invites went out. She then kicked off about those, so we compromised (which in hindsight, I wish we hadn't) and we never invited the nephew, she'd just presumed. She only realised he wasn't invited when another aunty replied saying she would bring her child instead of her husband! So I rang to apologise and say sorry, you can't, we should have been clearer on the invites.

Actually, we didn't put it on the invites because it is such a low key do, the invites were low key too! Just didn't assume people would assume to bring people not mentioned on the invite (big mistake!)

Anyway. I have ruined her day. I 'should' put family first because that's what 'weddings are all about' and we are 'game playing' (that's the phrase that tipped me over the edge..I'm a grown woman, and apparently I'm game playing because I'm not inviting her nephew?!)

Dh to be is fuming, and wants to give her the silent treatment until she apologises. I personally am not that bothered either way, but do feel a little bad that i let rip and told her exactly how I feel (via text..I know..should have done it verbally, but her bashing was via text!!)

No. We didn't know nephew was 'her world' and actually we are a little upset about it, because she's made zero effort since our DD was born to get to know her, and was supposed to be seeing her this weekend (first time since xmas) but has now said she won't because of how mean/ridiculous we are being about the wedding invites! So apparently, seeing DD is of no importance to her at all.

I just can't see how we are going to rectify this, because I think her behaviour is childish and ridiculous, but she obviously feels the same about our decisions!

spanky2 Sun 14-Apr-13 11:59:02

Good for you. My mil was the same. The day I married her son was the day her family was torn apart .sad

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Sun 14-Apr-13 11:59:06

She's being a twat. Well done for standing up to her and I'm glad your D-nearly-H is backing you up.

50shadesofbrown Sun 14-Apr-13 12:04:05

She sounds selfish & childish. If she doesn't want to come to your wedding, frankly you could be better off! Its YOUR day. She needs a reality check & won't get that if you give into her. Stick to your guns.

digerd Sun 14-Apr-13 12:06:37

Thank goodness DH is on your side and not feeling guilty about his mum being upset/angry.
She antagonised him by saying his nephew was 'her world' and showing no interest in his DD.
She is a nasty mother and MIL.

Wishwehadgoneabroad Sun 14-Apr-13 12:07:27

She is a bully....I always knew that..but it's taken this for DH to be to see what she is really like..

He's pretty upset bless him..

Fudgemallowdelight Sun 14-Apr-13 12:13:48

I think in your MIL's day weddings were more about hosting a family get together, but times have changed and now many people prefer to do it their way and make it smaller. So it's a bit of a generational difference thing. Could you explain that to her?

Ashoething Sun 14-Apr-13 12:15:39

Well done! I wish I had stuck up for myself with mil when we got married. We also had very small wedding with just meal after but because they were paying for meal they chose whom to invite meaning we had to leave people out-including my dsis dp!

Hopefully she will calm down,realise she has been an srse and proper an olive branch. Enjoy your wedding!

Wishwehadgoneabroad Sun 14-Apr-13 12:16:28

I tried to explain that to her.

Her reply was that she didn't have the wedding she wanted because she appreciated and realised that the day wasn't all about what she wanted, so she had loads of her inlaws family there and not so many of her own. Also all children were invited because weddings are 'all about children'

Basically, she is never going to agree with how we want it!

Fudgemallowdelight Sun 14-Apr-13 12:17:48

I think it is sometimes difficult for people to leave small babies or children at home for various reasons, so people may not be able to come if they can't bring their baby, but it's your wedding and your choice.

Ashoething Sun 14-Apr-13 12:18:55

If I had my way again I would have no children at wedding! We only had our nieces but had to invite the other set of gp's-sil parents who I hardly know!-at the insistence of inlaws!

Its your wedding so its your way-end of. Stick to your guns.

Wishwehadgoneabroad Sun 14-Apr-13 12:19:39

Fudge Father of baby has not been invited (at MIL's request!!!) so baby would have childcare, and that wouldn't be an issue.

badguider Sun 14-Apr-13 12:19:56

Does the not inviting of your nephew mean that one if your dh's siblings and partner can't come? IMO that would be the only issue if have with not allowing babies of very close family.

badguider Sun 14-Apr-13 12:21:15


So nephew is son of dh's sister? Is she separated from the baby's father?

gail734 Sun 14-Apr-13 12:22:44

Oh, how I love a crazy MIL thread! Weddings just bring out the absolute best worst in a truly nutty MIL. The confusion as she realises that she is not marrying her son, the real sense that she should be the centre of attention but the bride will always get in the way... I remember it all so well (was four years ago). Some highlights:

1. Nagged me doggedly about having "canapés". To get the full effect, you must pronounce this loudly and with an Irish accent. "Carnapaays!"
2. Insisted inviting her friends until there were twenty people at my wedding that I had never met. Also one woman who I actively dislike because she was unpleasant to my (deceased) DM!
3. Repeatedly requested that FIL be able to sample and approve the wine that was going to be on the table, because he is a "wine expert". (middle class drunk).
4. Asked me again and again when she was going to be "walking down the aisle". I was totally baffled by this and ignored her. It eventually transpired that she had been to some wedding in America at which the mother of the bride and mother of the groom had both been escorted down the aisle before the arrival of the bride. Sorry, Love!
5. Wore a made-to-measure number (floor length, full-skirted!) which cost twice as much as my nice off the peg wedding dress. When I told my DF this after the event, he said, "What? That frumpy thing?" Thanks, Dad!
6. Was horrified that I expected her friends and family to drink the toast with fizzy wine. Cue many, many repetitions of "Nor, nor, nor ... it moost be Champaaaane! CHAAAMPAAANE!" Every day. For weeks. My friends still shout "Champagne!?" at me if I ever give them sparkling wine.
7. Made me put a great deal of effort into working out the logistics of getting one ancient, wheelchair bound auntie into a medieval church. Again, I had never met this woman, but fair enough, the whole event should clearly be disability friendly. The old dear backed out at the last minute and I have still never met her.

OP, I tried to deal with this without offending her, but give a crazy MIL an inch and she will take a mile. My wedding day turned into something rather different from what I had planned and I'm still bitter about it, as you may have guessed! I wish I'd simply stayed away from her and told her that I wasn't going to discuss arrangements with her - that I wanted it all to be a surprise, or something. I didn't know her well enough at the time to politely but firmly tell her that she was a guest pretty much like any other and she wasn't going to have any editorial control!

OP, you have done the right thing! I bow down to you! KEEP IT UP!

PS Her own daughter is getting married next year. Let the craziness commence!

HellesBelles396 Sun 14-Apr-13 12:24:20

Obviously you understand her strength of feeling.

You would never put her in a situation that would cause her pain.

So you completely understand why she won't be at the wedding.

jacks365 Sun 14-Apr-13 12:25:41

She does sound nasty and mean and this argument sounds a long time coming however i'm also of the opinion that child free weddings mean child free. I'd be annoyed if i went to a child free wedding to discover that the bride and groom had their own children there especially if i was family my attitude is one rule for all.

My mil has never met her youngest granddaughter because she could never be bothered to make an effort and I gave up trying to bend over backwards to accommodate her, result is my life has been far less stressful.

Best wishes for your wedding day.

Ashoething Sun 14-Apr-13 12:27:59

HA HA! I also had the whole champagne thing with my mil! It was the one thing I opposed her about-she wanted my mum to pay for it. She was not happy and I know she tells everyone to this day that she and fil payed for entire wedding!

Total bollocks!-they paid for the meal and for dh and bil suits. My mum paid for my dress,all accessories,bridesmaid dresses and accessories,hair and make up for all,cars and bought a couple of rounds of drinks too.

Please keep us updated op-this has the makings of a classic threadgrin

DeckSwabber Sun 14-Apr-13 12:28:30

Well... she does sound OTT but I think if nephew is a baby you could allow the mother to choose whether to bring him. I think I might be upset if I couldn't bring my small baby with me, especially as your baby is there as well.

Just my opinion (never been married).

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