To resent my DIL a tiny bit?(458 Posts)
please be kind, I'm new here! Just after some advice. I'm 56 and have 2 adult sons (this concerns my eldest, who is 30). He married my DIL 3 years ago. Now I must say, she's a lovely girl. Kind, always polite and good fun to be around. She clearly dotes on my son for whom she does everything (I tell her to get him to do housework but she says she wants to and it's easier as she works from home and he commutes quite far to work). They are happy. This is good, obviously.
My husband (who is not sons dad but brought him up ever since we got together when son was 2) and I live about an hour and a half away. Son and DIL live 5 mins from her parents (she has never admitted to me that this is the real reason she moved there although I haven't directly asked). They are always at her parents. From what I can tell, they go over most Sunday's and DIL sees her mum regularly so seems a bit ott. DILs parents are very nice people but see DIL as a bit of a princess and lavish her and DS with attention and nice holidays, things, meals out etc. This isn't about money, as we are not struggling so don't get the wrong impression. I have noticed that when DS is around his Pils he is different to how he is around our family and they speak to each other as though they are all friends. I really notice this when I am around my son and DIL's parents. Lots of jokes and v informal.
I guess we are a little less 'fun' and I am the first to admit I'm not overly maternal but I do resent the fact that we never hear from them. DIL and son might text from time to time but I never hear from them. I don't like to interfere so obviously I don't harass them. Perhaps DILs parents impose on them but I don't want to be like that. Every single Christmas they spend Xmas day at her parents and DIL and son have us over at theirs on Boxing Day. Always the same and I anticipate this year to be the same.
Here's the thing. Son told me about 6 months ago that DIL is having fertility treatment but I didn't pry so I assume IVF. They haven't updated me once ever since. I know it's not DIL per se as she's not a nasty girl but I feel like they are all for her parents. My son is as much to blame here and I know he also prefers her parents as he is now very good friends with DILs brothers. I can't help but resent DIL.
We have another son (he and his brother are not close) but I feel like son just acts as though he has made a decision to prefer her parents and doesn't make any effort with us. AIBU? Has anyone else ever been placed in this position?
Pressed send too soon. Fact is, I have no idea how their treatment is going and I'm sure DILs parents aren't in the same boat. For all I know she could already be pregnant!
If she is pregnant they wont be able to hide it from you for more than 9 months.
If she isn't, or she has a miscarriage, they might not want to have to go over it with anyone else.
Why do you resent her when it's your son that isn't making the effort with you?
It's not her responsibility- it's his!
Have you asked your son how things are going? Or text them every now and again to keep in touch?
DH's FIL (he was married before me, so his late wife's father) complains to all and sundry that he hardly ever hears from us. We make sure DS contacts his grandfather twice a month and we update him on big things, include him on birthdays etc, but he never contacts us. Like never ever. No texts, no phone calls and, it feels, no interest unless we're the ones doing all the running.
I don't resent her for that. I resent the fact that they don't split the time spent with in laws equally. Son clearly likes spending time there, which is fine, but it is favouritism at the end of the day
Do you ask them when they are free so you can visit more? They won't know if you don't ask
Why don't you phone them and ask how it's going?
And there's no reason why you can't speak to your son and DIL as friends, or take them for the odd meal out or whatever.
Your relationship with them is what you make it.
Have you rung your son to ask how the treatment is going?
Why don't you just ask? I get the impression that you leave all the running to them. Maybe they feel that you are disinterested and distant? To be honest you sound like a bit of a princess!
You say that you are not very maternal and don't want to impose. Maybe your ds and dil have gotten the impression that you would rather keep them at arms length? I would invite them around more if I were you and ask them for meals/days out etc. If you are wondering about the fertility treatment, why not just ring or text ds and ask? He probably thinks you aren't bothered seeing as you haven't mentioned it since.
Lalala I don't contact them much, no. Like I said I don't want harass and I am very busy with my other sons children who I look after a few days a week. We have never been in each other's pockets like DILs family
It's your sons job to nurture a relation with you, not your DILs.
You say that they speak to the in laws like they're friends, does this mean that you are more formal? Because I imagine that wouldn't be much fun if you had to behave "properly" and not really relax.
Speak to your son, tell him you miss him and DIL and would like it if you could try and work on having a closer relationship. Don't mention the in laws as it will seem like your doing it out of jealousy rather than a genuine desire to be closer.
" I have noticed that when DS is around his Pils he is different to how he is around our family and they speak to each other as though they are all friends."
They are friends, its perfectly normal behaviour.
"DIL and son might text from time to time but I never hear from them. I don't like to interfere so obviously I don't harass them. Perhaps DILs parents impose on them but I don't want to be like that"
So you expect them to do all the running, then get the hump that they dont contact you. Its a two way street.
"Son told me about 6 months ago that DIL is having fertility treatment but I didn't pry so I assume IVF. They haven't updated me once ever since."
Probably because your "not prying" came across as not being interested.
" My son is as much to blame here and I know he also prefers her parents"
No he isnt to blame, and you just assume that.
I am trying to be kind but you sound hard work, unapproachable and jealous. You are placing yourself in this position by expecting them to make all the moves, from what you have posted.
Why don't you make arrangements to spend more time with them?
Do you drive? It's hardly surprising they see more of her parents if they're five minutes away, and you're an hour and a half.
Have you invited them for Christmas?
I haven't contacted them about their treatment because DIL didn't tell me (son did). For all I know, she may not know he has told me about it.
Do you ever invite them over? Do you ever call or text?
What do you want your relationship with them to be like? In an ideal world what would it look like? How often would you see them? Speak to them? What would you do or talk about? Work towards that.
Their relationship with DILs parents is nothing to do with it.
Maybe you not being overly maternal is the problem.
It is their personal business. If they were trying to concieve naturally you wouldn't be revieving weekly ovulation/ejaculation updates! If they become pregnant and when they are ready i am sure you will find out
You have to take the initiative here if you want to change things - perhaps her parents invite them over all the time and so they go. You never invite them so they don't feel as welcome. It's all very well saying you don't want to harass them but you're inwardly seething over an issue that's very easy to deal with. Call them, say you'd love to see them and when can they come - sorted!
My MIL would have written this post 3yrs into our marriage (with a few minor changes) , 24 yrs on , I have not had any contact with her for about 18 yrs and she has no contact with our children (24 &17) , which is entirely the choice of my children because of her behaviour over the years - I would be very wary about how you handle this situation if you want to avoid finding yourself in a similar boat .
Maybe they don't want to bother you because you're so busy with your grandchildren? Maybe the thinking behind them moving near her parents was that you wouldn't be able to help much when their children came along because of your other son's children?
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