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In Law visits

(20 Posts)
stayathomedad Mon 29-Aug-16 21:33:27

Anyone else have inlaw family visit them five times five consecutive weeks in a row and tell us amongst other things that we need to mow lawn/ chop trees down/ then secretly whilst in garden (repeatedly!) rearrange direction loganberry bramble grows in/ tell them where items in planned kitchen extension should go, or is it just us ? ... Don't think I'd ever have the nerve to make any negative or forced comments on another's home/life/speech especially whilst enjoying their hospitality, and especially when their opinion not asked for. All this is in addition to (MIL & SIL) bullying my DP into accepting (and wearing!) items of clothing that make her look 10 yrs older and frumpy. Plus chippy comments about how our children talk etc., ...
Just poor upbringing / Bad manners or should I accept it as fair play and do same at theirs when we visit next ?
E.g. ...'can't you see your shed is in the wrong place/why on earth did you use that colour etc etc../ no no no it's pronounced 'Choreetho' not choritsssso'
... Suppose that could be fun although a bit childish ;-)
Very sadly, we (DP & me) can never seem to talk about this without falling out (even though I never mention the frumpy dresses !) - ironically, the slightest criticism of her family is perceived as very personal attack. Shame I can't get her to feel the same about her family's constant picking confused.
Advice/solutions ??

stayathomedad Mon 29-Aug-16 21:51:47

Out of curiosity just searched for others similar posts -
Wow. I quit my complaining.

BlackeyedSusan Mon 29-Aug-16 21:55:43

oh hell.

can you just go out and be elsewhere?

your oh can critiscise her family but not you. nor can you do the same without being in the wrong big time. my ex was like this. his mum made some really hurtful comments to me but any pointing out how hurtful was met with it being at least half my fault.

kurlique Mon 29-Aug-16 21:58:27

You need to work on your selective deafness and vagueness, DH has it off pat! But 5 weeks running... I would be hiding from my own DM after a couple... Gaaaaa!! (DH has also developed narcolepsy type skills and sleeps through a decent portion of visitations... Worth a thought?)

stayathomedad Mon 29-Aug-16 23:43:58

Some great ideas - and thanks for the empathy/sympathy. However, reading those other posts in that link above put it all into perspective - some inlaws are positively psychopathic ! Still prepared to believe mine mean well. They just have a rather odd family script. There's an awful lot of competitive 'hairshirt wearing' and 'one-legged arse kicking'. I imagine that doesn't make sense, but if you met them you'd know exactly what I meant in a second. ....there's a really nice great Aunt (one of a few sisters of MIL) who seems to have escaped the family BS, sadly we rarely get to see her. Full of joy and humour, she is.

ImissGrannyW Tue 30-Aug-16 01:44:53

suggest you focus on one or two things that your DP might agree with and go forward together on just those things.

The rest can come later....

Start small. This is a long game.....

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter Tue 30-Aug-16 02:20:25

Smile and nod, smile and nod. all the while thinking 'you're a twat' smile

^^Best advice I've ever had from MN about tackling people where it would cause more bother than it's worth to lose your rag at them.

tigertreats Tue 30-Aug-16 02:26:06

Best thing I ever said to my interfering MIL?

MIL: Why on earth are you having another baby surely you can't afford ... Not right time...

Me: you're right. I'll abort it shall I?

PovertyPain Tue 30-Aug-16 02:29:22

Practice saying "That's nice" and see if they suspect that you mean it or are telling them to "fuck off", as in Mrs Brown's Boys. wink

Trifleorbust Tue 30-Aug-16 06:49:22

"We like it like that." Big smile.

hesterton Tue 30-Aug-16 06:54:39

(Look at them hard following interfering comment)

"Really, do you think so?"


"How very ODD"

ThisIslandGirl Tue 30-Aug-16 06:59:24

My MIL is like this, so now I do things to purposefully antagonise her grin

She told us in no uncertain terms we should not paint the living room dark red (in OUR house!). No, dark colours make rooms look small. We needed light, airy colours.

The next time she arrived she found not only the living room my preferred shade of dark red but also the hallway painted navy blue. Her face was a picture!

Same with certain flowers in the garden, how I dress/ play with my DS, how I should cook. She finds coming over a much more stressful experience now!

Horsemad Tue 30-Aug-16 07:06:35

You could always use that MN favourite:

Did you mean to be so rude?

Go on, you know you want to!! grin Seriously, I don't understand why they have visited 5 weeks in a row. That needs to change and FAST.

Lilaclily Tue 30-Aug-16 07:14:49

I pretend I'm in a show in my head so I use a fake jolly voice 'oh really how interesting you feel that way, unfortunately I do it the way I like it '

I use a fixed grin at all times

amroc18 Tue 30-Aug-16 07:15:13

Or you could point out if they visited less you wouldhave more time to do the --pointless --stuff they think you should!

Lilaclily Tue 30-Aug-16 07:18:02

I do the same with my mums comments, her 'your hair would be so much better dyed this colour than that' , me : 'oh that's interested mum I actually hate that brittle blond look' pointed look in her direction but with inane fake smile

Her 'your life would be so much easier if you drove '
Me ' I'm fine mum , the bus goes every 10 minutes, if I was your age and lived in the middle of nowhere I'd be worried as your approaching 80'

Arrgghhh, that felt good !

Lilaclily Tue 30-Aug-16 07:19:18

I must add that I've been putting up with the second comment for the last 22 years , will she ever get over the fact that I don't want to learn to drive !

Sceptimum Tue 30-Aug-16 07:23:55

Another option that works well is to barely acknowledge rude comments. Just carry on what you are doing and say "mmm" in a completely non-committal manner without even bothering with eye contact. Deprived of a reaction, people usually stop eventually.
I am a huge fan of a long hard look followed by a short "No" in general with this but with ILs it's usually better to try and keep things calmer.

stayathomedad Wed 31-Aug-16 18:49:46

I'm feeling so much better reading all this - thanks people smile

sophiestew Wed 31-Aug-16 18:57:33

My MIL rearranged my cutlery drawer because she thought the knives forks and spoons should be in a different order.

I nearly stabbed her grin

I think a firm, "NO, we like it like this," is fine. The problems arise if OH doesn't back you up!

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