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To think that former MIl is wrong to say this.

(22 Posts)
MileyVirus Fri 05-Jun-15 20:35:16

My dh passed away 5 years ago, dh immigranted to Britain from Kerala in southern India when he was 4 years old.


MileyVirus Fri 05-Jun-15 20:35:43

Sorry posted too soon angry.

MileyVirus Fri 05-Jun-15 20:40:39

Anyway, former MIL said I gave not done enough to give ds and dd a knowledge of their dads culture (my kids are 15,16 now so they had 10 and 11 years with their dad.

Former Mil said that my children know little about Indian culture and that the are basically American hmm culture wise.

I cook Indian food (because former dh taught me some great recipes), but I can't see much more I can do.

Anyway aibu?

Leeds2 Fri 05-Jun-15 20:43:10

Does MIL live in Kerala? Could the DC visit her there?

mineofuselessinformation Fri 05-Jun-15 20:43:34

Talk to your children, if they want to know more, you can do it together.
Either way, it's not really your mil's business, but if you have asked the dcs, you can tell mil to back off as you are following your dcs wishes.

redexpat Fri 05-Jun-15 20:44:01

Surely thats her job? What exactly does she expect you to teach them?

MrsLeighHalfpenny Fri 05-Jun-15 20:45:37

Send the DC to India every summer holiday. Or to stay with relatives in UK regularly if easier. Go on holiday there yourself with kids. Buy them books set in India and watch films with them, even if only Marigold Hotel etc.

lunar1 Fri 05-Jun-15 20:45:53

I'd say that job should have passed to your inlaws. You have been busy raising children who have lost their dad. I don't think you need added pressure.

FiveGoMadInDorset Fri 05-Jun-15 20:47:10

I have worked with a doctor and a nurse form Kerala, ink both cases there was a strong local community from Kerala, is that something maybe you could see going to to see if you could join in on occasion?

BullshitS70 Fri 05-Jun-15 20:47:52

what nationality are you OP?

Moomintroll85 Fri 05-Jun-15 20:49:15

Yanbu. It must've been awful for you losing your DH and your kids losing their dad. I'm sure you keep his memory alive with them in many ways.

I think it's unfair for her to make you feel guilty about such a thing. Couldn't she put some energy into teaching them about their heritage instead of criticising you?

spillyobeans Fri 05-Jun-15 20:52:22

Its not fair for her to be making you feel bad especially when it must be hard without dh. Your dcs are 16 and 17 so not little kids? If they wanted to learn more then tbh it would be easy for them to reach out. Could you see if mil/dcs wpuld be interested in sitting down together once a month or something and participate in the comunity/some activities/trips or whatever related to keralan culture like a bonding thing? Maybe she feels left out a bit?

MileyVirus Fri 05-Jun-15 21:06:44

She lives in the Uk.

I'm English

They have been to India once.

They visit regularly.

PtolemysNeedle Fri 05-Jun-15 21:36:07

I'm sorry you lost your husband.

Your mil might be right that your dc don't know as much about their a Dad culture as they would have done had he lived, but shit happens when people die. Your mil would be very unreasonable to blame you for your dc not knowing as much as she'd like about India, if there's stuff she wants the dc to know then she can teach them.

MileyVirus Fri 05-Jun-15 21:54:26

The thing is my teenagers are not interested in India. Its not cool to them.

MissPenelopeLumawoo2 Fri 05-Jun-15 22:10:30

How much did your DH know about Kerala? If he had lived in UK since the age of 4 he probably absorbed more British culture than Indian. SIBU to expect you to teach them a culture which is presumably not yours. Can she not do more herself?

Meerka Fri 05-Jun-15 22:23:36

A lot of their knowledge of their culture should have come from their father in their first 10 - 11 years (I'm very sorry for your / their loss, it's very hard to loose a parent).

I think that the main time to spark their interest was when they were small. If that time has passed, it's harder.

But in memory of their father, perhaps you could try some things. The main one that comes to mind is sending them there on holiday as other posters have said. Have you got some indian things in your home? would it be far too far to consider wearing a sari sometimes (that might well be too far, it could work in London but if you're in deepest Shropshire it might not at all!) If you (forced yourself) to watch some Indian films or something even.

I can see why your MIL wants your children to know about their Indian heritage as well as their English even if their father was pretty well British in culture. I think it would be nice to answer her with soft words, suggest a holiday there if it's financially feasible and to try to up the presence of Indian things in your home.

Aermingers Fri 05-Jun-15 22:43:37

She may well be handling it badly. But in fairness I cook amazing curries but know fuck all about Indian culture.

Remember she has lost her son too. This doesn't necessarily have to be negative. Rather than responding 'how dare you', try responding 'and how would you like me to do that, what would you suggest'. A positive response is often more constructive than a negative one, and it may be something your children could benefit from and might make them feel closer to their late father?

MileyVirus Sat 06-Jun-15 11:50:18

The thing is if your children actually are not interested in India then you can't do make them want to learn about India.

Former Dh was very british he did teach the dc about India, food and took them there.

Mil is wrong to say that my children have no culture and are bacically American because they watch MTV and kardashians. That is rude and insulting IMO.

MileyVirus Sat 06-Jun-15 19:52:07


Maybe83 Sat 06-Jun-15 19:58:34

It's hard to judge really.

You said your dh did encourage learning about his culture. Has his family tried to carry that on, so invites to occasions celebrations passing on traditions? If so have you been encouraging of that?

momtothree Sat 06-Jun-15 21:33:32

I think GP whatever their culture think DGC are brought up differently to their child hood... the world has changed and kids have different priorities ... my own grandmother was brought up very prudish reserved and lacked affection, her priority was to look after her husband, I dint think my generation would even consider this inequality. Maybe when they are older they will be more interested, but you cant teach them what you dont know... do you celerbrate indian traditions? Is she expecting arranged marriages or talk of such? Have you boys or girls? I assume you have contact with their indian family, is religion playing a part? Sorry no help, I would tuck this away and let your kids grow into the people they want to be, ultimately they are a mix and they can choose the best of both.

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