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AIBU to stop seeing the Mother in law??

(59 Posts)
user1469300540 Sun 04-Sep-16 14:11:02

I guess I'm reaching out for people opinions and advice really as I'm really struggling atm!

So the back story. DH and I have been together over 8 years. The first 4 were spent in a different county due to my university and then job offer. For all this time his mother never bothered to visit us or ask to meet up when we travelled back to see my family (I am very close to my parents.). We would get a 3 minute phone call once every 6 months to tell us about their latest holiday but that would be it. DH fell out with his dad years ago and so their relationship is pretty much dead but MIL is still married to his father (make sense?).

We finally moved back home 4 years ago and again we saw her once a year for about an hour and that was it. She's never sent us a Xmas card or birthday card. We invited her to our wedding 2 years ago (not FIL) and she spent the whole time crying and slagging off my parents (my parents had paid for half the wedding and were heavily involved in the day).

September last year we found out we were pregnant and all of sudden she started wanting to visit every month. She spent the whole pregnancy moaning that she didn't know what to buy for the baby and didn't buy anything but then moaned that my family and DH and I had bought everything. I offered suggestions of things we needed or would like but she just moaned that she didn't know what to buy. When my due was near she cried because i wouldn't tell her when I was going to go into labour. I didn't want anyone to know as I didn't want the extra pressure or feel that we needed to keep updating people. I wanted it to just be me and my DH.

Anyway DD was born and she wants to visit every month. She calls and expects me to be free and fit in around her forgetting that I have committing to baby groups and I also do childcare for my sister each week. She comes round and will just talk about her holidays. She asks nothing about our DD and shows her no interest. She has no idea where she is in her development or what she likes etc because she doesn't ask and if I try to tell her she just switches off and talks about another holiday or night out. We hear nothing from her until she wants to next visit. No phone calls or texts to see how we are. When she does visit she just wants a photo of DD to show her friends and that's it!

I've found out today that's she's upset that I keep cancelling her. I've never cancelled her!!! I asked to rearrange from 12 o'clock to 9 o'clock! And that she doesn't understand why i won't let her babysit. (My parents and sister do all our babysitting which is about once every 2monthe so DH and I can have a date night. My mum insists that we do this and we don't complain!). I just don't think her babysitting is appropriate. She knows nothing about me; not even my birthday or how I take my tea. She doesn't know my DD routine or likes etc as she shows now interest. And a big part of me is really upset that she ignored us for 7 years but now we have a child wants to visit loads!

To make matter worse DH hates seeing her so I end up seeing her on my own when he's at work to keep the peace. I always end up feeling angry and upset when I see her.

I guess what I'm asking is AIBU to stop seeing her? We have no relationship really and she just wants photos of DD which I can post to her regularly! DH wants nothing to do with her either. would do others think?

OurBlanche Sun 04-Sep-16 14:18:24

Definitely do a Zammo then! Just say 'no!'

If your DH avoids and it is onconveniet for you, tell you DH you will no longer be able to accommodate her and that he needs to sort something out that suits him and her.

If, like mine, he has no cpoing mechanism for his DM then you both need a frank discussion about how you will BOTH go NC and will not allow the other to be bulldozed into meetings.

It took my DH about a decade to come clean with me... it wasn't nice as it trurned out that I had inadvertantly joined the ranks of those who put him down - a lot!

The arument was quite nasty, but we have been fine, able to tupposrt eachother and discuss it openly. He was immediately much more relaxed, once the shouting match had ended.

Don't leap to any conclusions, though. Many such threads have a lot of 'DH problem, let him sort it' answers. But there wil be others who have DH issies like mine. Adult men whose childhood left thm with no known way of asserting themselves... 16 years of trainig at that age is very hard to overcome. Your DH may need your support to do ahat seems to be obvious!

Good luck.

Crispbutty Sun 04-Sep-16 14:21:15

why is your dh not interested in his parents? what have they done to piss him off?

I don't see why you're bothering. You DH should be the one to be meeting up with his mum. If neither of you get any joy out of the visits - and DH actively avoids her - then I don't see why you should bother if it's not what you want. MIL doesn't want a relationship with you, only with DD

ImperialBlether Sun 04-Sep-16 14:24:58

Why don't you text "Sorry, can't make that date. Here's a photo of the baby" - wouldn't she be happy with that compromise?

wobblywonderwoman Sun 04-Sep-16 14:26:44

I think you are wrong to begrudle a monthly visit - its not much

But dh should be there. She sounds very self centred and a bit strange.

All in all- dh needs to sort this. He needs to explain to his mother that she cannot babysit. Are you giving her the opportunity to learn note about your daughter so she could babysit?

totalrecall1 Sun 04-Sep-16 14:57:00

I think you are being a bit unreasonable. It sounds as though you are including your parents in everything and she is feeling left out. Perhaps she has a difficult relationship with her son but wants to build one with her grandchild. You should let her. Once a month is hardly a bind, and if she lives so far away a 9am start is also a bit unreasonable. Perhaps she talks about her holidays because she finds conversation difficult with you. I thnk you should make a bit more of an effort IMO.

Mummyoflittledragon Sun 04-Sep-16 14:57:14

It is grossly unfair of you to be burdened alone. She sounds like a very strange woman. And a narcissist. I expect your dh has very few coping skills if he wheedles out of this so easily. The strategy of complaining about you is a common one and used to control as that pity she elicits from others is fed back to you. I would make yourself less available and I would also perhaps consider meeting on neutral ground. Maybe at a baby and parent group you will never go to unless she is around - some shops do these - John Lewis for example did when DD was little. Then she cannot just talk about herself exclusively, your DD will be engaged in an activity with you (I think she's very small) and there will be other parents around.

TathitiPete Sun 04-Sep-16 15:26:55

I think it's important why dh doesn't have much of a relationship with her. And none at all with his dad. Usually people have extremely good reasons for being nc with family, especially parents. (Maybe not always but definitely most of the time.) My dh doesn't have a relationship with either of his parents. For very good reasons.

Cherrysoup Sun 04-Sep-16 15:39:54

Just say no to her visits. Why is she keen since you've had a child when she isn't interested when she's there? No visits without the DH being present and cut them down to however much suits you.

Mybeardeddragonjustdied2016 Sun 04-Sep-16 15:44:39

Get her on what's app and send a pic every month instead. Stop putting yourself through this! If your dh doesn't want to spend time with her why the hell should you?!

Rubies12345 Sun 04-Sep-16 15:45:17

Why can't she see her Grandchild once a month?

RunningLulu Sun 04-Sep-16 15:46:16

Is she doing all the talking OP? Be honest it doesn't sound like you bother or care about her, and she might be talking to cover up the awkwardness. I think what you're doing to her is really sad. She sounds lonely & you can't even bother to spare a few hours for her once a month.

user1469300540 Sun 04-Sep-16 15:57:07

DH hasn't spoken to his father for years. I'm not really sure why but several reasons but the main one being at a family wedding we went to his dad ignored us and walked away from us. It was very awkward and uncalled for. DH merely went to say hello to his dad and that was his response. His mum is just hard work. Again lots went on as a child and I don't think he ready/wanting to forgive her.

She lives 15mins away now so 9am isn't unreasonable I don't think.

I've always included my family and have tried very hard with her to include her as well. I've tried to talk to her about DD but she doesn't want to know. I've always been close to my family and I don't see why I should change that just to please her. My parents have always supported us; let us move in when we moved back home etc. When DH was in hospital I was away but it was my parents that ran up to hospital to take him supplies as his parents wouldn't change their plans!

I make a huge effort with her! I always answer my phone to her and if I can't I text saying il call her back as soon as I can. 9 times out of 10 I have to change my plans to see her when she's free and normally this doesn't fit in with DD routines.

I've tried telling her about DD development and showing her pictures and videos of things she missed but she doesn't even look at my phone! It's like it's a huge in convience to know all this information. I've tried the opposite thinking I was overloading her. Same response.

DH feels the same regarding babysitting. I think there's a trust issue from him and there's definitely
one from me. We also don't trust her in our house; she would definitely snoop through all our stuff and she can't have DD at hers as his father is obviously there and he's refusing to meet DD at all.

It's all very messy and I just feel like I'm playing piggy in the middle. DD is getting nothing from seeing her. She usually just cries when she tries to cuddle her, even with me sitting next to her and modelling MiL is a safe person etc.

I'm just getting fed up of people pleasing when in all honesty I have nothing in common with her and truth be told I don't like her. I've tried to get DH to see her at weekends with me but he's refusing. My sister thinks I need to stop but mum thinks i should just bite my tongue and let her be a grandparent. But in my opinion you earn the right to be a grandparent and I just don't think she is doing that. AIBU?

user1469300540 Sun 04-Sep-16 15:58:59

She sits in silent unless I talk! It's me instigating all conversations!

I find it hard to care for her when for 7 years she didn't care for us. If we hadn't of had DD I know for a fact she wouldn't be bothering with us.

Wolpertinger Sun 04-Sep-16 16:03:36

I think it's important you establish from your DH why he wants no relationship with her.

And then what sort of relationship he imagines his children having with her, with that in mind, and what is realistic, given the sort of woman she is.

It sounds likely that she is not capable of any sort of healthy grandparenting relationship beyond photos and Christmas/birthday presents, if that. Your DH may have a very sad story to tell.

Once you have cleared the air between you, you can agree together exactly what you are going to do about her demands - how often you will send photos, not feeling guilty about declining babysitting requests or whatever., whether DH deals with communication with her or you do and so on.

The key thing is that you do it as a team and she doesn't come between you.

pictish Sun 04-Sep-16 16:03:40

I can't see what it is she's done that is so awful you would grudge her an audience with her granddaughter once a month. So she talks about her holidays and doesn't know how your baby is what?

I don't recall anyone other than myself of my dh being in the slightest bit interested in what stage of developmental progress our babies were at...even our own ordinary, loving parents.

It does seem as case of your parents can do no wrong, while your mil can do no right. Yabu.

Vintagegirl1 Sun 04-Sep-16 16:04:16

Sounds difficult. I have been nc with my in laws for the past two years and it has been the best thing I have ever done. Like yours my Mil was very emotionally manipulative and insisted we visit every sunday and would also come to ours during the week. Dh refused to say no to her so when I started doing it I of course became the bad dil. The shit really hit the fan when I refused to keep going there for Xmas.

RaptorInaPorkPieHat Sun 04-Sep-16 16:04:30

To make matter worse DH hates seeing her so I end up seeing her on my own when he's at work to keep the peace.

No. This is not on at all. If he doesn't put up with visit with his parents, no-one can expect you to do it.

DoreenLethal Sun 04-Sep-16 16:07:25

How did you find out she has been saying these things?

Wolpertinger Sun 04-Sep-16 16:07:49

Crossposting with you - you come from a normal healthy family so you are making an effort to include her and for things to be equal.

Your DH does not. It sounds as if left to him, there would be zero contact with his Dad and not much more with his Mum.

He knows his parents better than you. Don't force it. Sadly he doesn't come from a normal healthy family and the reason he doesn't contact them isn't because he's a bloke and it's not his top priority, it's because he knows they are toxic and he'd like to see less of them. Your 'healthy family' rules don't work with his family.

Communicate with your DH and let him take the lead about how much your MIL is involved in stuff. If he can't deal with her, and you can't deal with her, a small child can't either.

pictish Sun 04-Sep-16 16:07:56

So you don't actually know why your dh rejects his parents then?

Sounds to me like they're all cut from the same huffy, petty, uncommunicative cloth tbh.

sorenipples Sun 04-Sep-16 16:08:46

User, I think you will get two different responses representing two different viewpoints on whether grandparents have innate rights to their grandchildren.

I guess my advice is to think about whether you expect access to your grandchildren regardless of your relationship with your children and work back from that.

Also, there are less extreme options than NC. You could reduce visits to every 6 weeks , just Christmas and birthday etc. Not advising you do, just pointing out it is not as now or NC as the only options.

smokeybandit Sun 04-Sep-16 16:09:32

Being NC with my IL's was the best thing we ever did. Only caused arguments and upset and now hasn't happened since. But then they didn't live 15 mins away so not sure how you'd do that. If she's that close and determined would she just turn up?

DoreenLethal Sun 04-Sep-16 16:12:51

She sits in silent unless I talk! It's me instigating all conversations!

See this sort of thing intrigues me. I'd sit in silence the whole time and at the end say 'Well, this doesn't seem to be working, you want to see DD presumably but never talk about her, or actually play with her so lets knock this on the head. Now, where is your bag/coat/jacket/car keys' - and get up and walk her to the door.

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