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...to be actively avoiding the inlaws?

(91 Posts)
Meepicheep Wed 15-Feb-17 11:24:06

Short answer is probably yes, but I'll give you a bit more detail.

DH and I met in the first year of university (18 years ago) and from the off my MIL didn't like me - because I'm Welsh. She could just about manage a polite conversation with me (I would occasionally visit during holidays) and then slag me off to the OH. Because he's awesome, he'd back me up. She doesn't like anything to do with Wales because her father drowned there when she was a little girl. I totally accept she probably has untreated PTSD from this and therefore a lot of tongue-biting has gone on over the years when she says things that show a lack of empathy for other people. When the OH asked me to marry him, the MIL and FIL refused to talk to him for a whole summer. BIL was supportive of my OH at the time and remains the same - backing up my DH when my inlaws claim they were never horrible to him.

So, we bumbled along for two years at university. In the third year, because of rising rents, the OH lived with me and my parents. Inlaws were happy with this arrangement as it saved them money.

In the January of the third year we decided to set a date and the first date we could get was November. Excited, I went to buy a wedding dress and the OH spoke to his parents about the wedding. Their reply was basically "don't care, don't approve." I tried to talk to my future MIL around end of January about the wedding dress (it was a bargain, she loves saving money) and she very literally turned her back on me and walked out of the room.

Not long after this the OH was told I wasn't good enough for him because I came from a benefits family. Both my parents had worked, my mother giving up to be a SAHM and my father taking early retirement to become her carer when she developed MS (I was about 17). So, yes, we were on benefits - but so what? I'd made it to uni (though I lived at home) and both me and the OH were lined up to do teacher training the year after graduating.

Roll forward to September. We have actively tried to engage the inlaws in all discussions - asking them if we can book them a hotel, explaining that it was a cold buffet (all my parents could afford), asking what type of flowers they liked - she in particular was great at changing the subject. In September we gave them a copy of a weddin invitation as a keepsake. They said that was the first time they realised we were serious and would make it 'if they could.' Do I need to add that they were quarter of an hour late to the church and went home before the evening do?

Still, to this day, they will argue that they didn't find out until September and would have liked to be more involved - which is BS. We tried. I even showed her the design for the invites and she blanked me.

We gritted our teeth an cracked on with things. My mother got progressively worse and ended up in a nursing home, with Dad facing huge bills (social security at time were rubbish and he was told to sell the house to cover the nursing care which made him homeless - and yes, I did point out he shouldn't). He got a small flat. My mother in law's reaction? "It would be better for everyone if she was dead, really, wouldn't it?" On Christmas Eve. At a family Christmas I hadn't wanted to go to.

Well, the MIL got her wish and my mother died not long after. The same week we were burgled. So, not a great time. Zero help there, but the inlaws did attend the funeral the third and last time they spoke to my dad).

There's other stuff too - insisting that we spend Christmas with them or they sulk, epically. Trying to play happy families by insisting on family holidays every Easter (and until I couldn't take it any more, every August too) on the basis "we're paying you should be grateful" and always booking the place before asking us. Yes, we could have pre-empted and said no, but the backlash about how we (I) had split up the family was rarely worth it.

By now, about nine years into marriage, the inlaws had stopped being openly hostile about me and things calmed down. There was a happy pretence of happy families and we'd see them every month (my father would see us a little less frequently as we live closer to inlaws, an accident really due to where my first teaching job was). I got pregnant - so, yey, first grandchild and all that and was due on 25th July. A few weeks later they said "hope you don't mind but we've booked a holiday for the 23rd as we will save 200 quid on the holiday." What can you say at that point? They'd paid in full and logic says baby could be late or early. The OH was really hurt but by now we were well used to having to do things by ourselves.

On the evening of the 22nd, my DS was born and not to put too fine a point on it, I nearly died. I lost 2 litres of blood and my blood pressure kept dropping - it took until 9 in the morning to stabilise and doctors told us later they'd sent the OH home to sleep "because they fully expected him to be looking after a newborn alone." Cheery thought. Anyway, he called his parents to tell them they were now grandparents and that he was worried about me - he's not an idiot, he knew something was up.

His dad complained he'd woken him up early, that they didn't need to be up for two hours.

Their home, the hospital I was in and the airport are located in such a way that they could have made a half hour detour to see their grandson (maybe comfort their son?) before heading off on holiday.

The thought didn't even cross their minds.

When their flight was delayed by thirteen hours - thank you, karma - they kept calling OH up to complain about it (meanwhile I'm having blood transfusions and can't move in the background). They also blamed my DS for turning up early as to why they couldn't come and see him.

DS is now five. In the interim the BIL has got married (triggering another argument with inlaws about our wedding) and the BIL and new wife have had a baby. Our DS is not neglected by grandparents and they babysit for us twice a year (sometimes Valentine's Day or thereabouts and usually around our anniversary).

However.

MIL has become more vocal about things she doesn't approve of. She's always been racist - e.g. she would cook a curry and while we're eating she would come out with "better than those immigrants cook, don't know what they put in it." She also thinks that the Jews play up the Holocaust too much and that "it was so long ago they should just forget it now."

We of course argue - but it's genuinely pointless. There is a non-negotiable - she's entitled to hold those (vile, horrible) views but she is not to express them in front of her grandchildren (BIL and SIL agree with us).

Of course the MIL and FIL voted Leave and we voted Remain (I'm not going to argue that all Leave voters are racists, that's just stupid, but MIL is an example of one who is). Cue the FIL shouting at my DH that he's a traitor and stupid for voting Remain.

There was an apology and eventually some sort of platitude about how 'it will be alright' and not to worry about our jobs (both have left teaching, both of us are reliant on the EU not falling apart).

Meanwhile MIL has announced that she thinks I've done well losing weight since DS was born (I know, I was shocked) and that running clearly worked because "you put on too much weight with DS really."

Actually I didn't - was size 12 when I got pregnant and size 14 after about eight months post birth. There was a period of PND (couldn't exclusively breastfeed - milk never kicked in properly so DS was combination fed) so I did fill out to size 16 after that. And lost the weight again - but actually, who cares? I was healthy during pregnancy and had a 9lbs skinny baby.

I'm (finally) pregnant again. At 24 weeks I had a bleed and bizarrely spd kicked in during hospital stay. FIL picked up DS one day from school and announced "can't see you going much longer, you're huge now." Actually I'm in size 14 maternity clothes, but thanks for that. Thanks for saying I'll have a massively premature baby. Though I've had to rely on other people, friends and other mums when I can't do the school run, we've decided not to ask inlaws again. It's not worth the background comments about my weight. Even on Christmas Day the MIL turned around with "well people didn't know I was pregnant with your BIL until the month before he was born."

Baby bump two is now huge (7 months) and tbh I don't want to see my inlaws. All the unnecessary nastiness, the thoughtless comments, it's not worth it. The midwife has said I'm measuring correctly, I'm healthy, she doesn't think I'm massively overweight at all. OH has taken DS to visit grandparents. I was 'tired' that weekend and in any case he was going out with friend and it was nice for them to get some alone time with grandson.

After all the stuff we've let them rant about in the past, it sounds petty to say I can't be bothered with them for the next nine weeks. But I really can't - I'm so tired of all this, and of them. Don't want the background stress or bitchy comments any more. And certainly not for the next two months!

ILikeBigBooksAndICannotLie Wed 15-Feb-17 11:29:28

You say the short answer is "yes". The short answer is "no". YADNBU. They sound awful.

Happyinthehills Wed 15-Feb-17 11:34:16

You are definitely NBU.
Avoid them all you can. flowers

TheABC Wed 15-Feb-17 11:37:04

Congratulatiobs on your pregnancy, OP. I think it would be very reasonable not to see them before the birth and quietly disengage afterwards.If nothing else, knock christmas and the holidays on the head by pre empting their plans.

Osirus Wed 15-Feb-17 11:42:26

They sound awful. Definitely avoid as much as you can.

Helbelle75 Wed 15-Feb-17 11:46:09

Congratulations! Fwiw I'm 32 weeks pregnant, measuring perfectly and constantly being told how huge I am. I'm size 12 maternity...
I would avoid, she's clearly poisonous and stressing you out. Enjoy your lovely little family.

Sparkletastic Wed 15-Feb-17 11:48:54

I wouldn't see them. How attached is your DH to continuing a relationship with them?

ohfourfoxache Wed 15-Feb-17 11:49:35

Christ, avoid like the plague! It is just not worth the stress.

Actually, fuck the next 9 weeks. If you don't want to see them AT ALL then you don't have to

ohfourfoxache Wed 15-Feb-17 11:53:08

Having just read Hell's post, fwiw I'm 19 weeks and I am enormous. I saw a neighbour last week and she said I looked ready to drop. I'm now in a size 20 sad and maternity clothes just cut into the bump.

Roll on July sad

Huldra Wed 15-Feb-17 11:53:50

Yanbu I'm amazed you've seen them as much as you have. It would be quite understandable if you took a massive emotional step back. You don't need to go to every visit, you don't need to give them any personal information. You can reduce visits at times like a Christmas, maybe for a few hours on boxing Day, or whatever works for you and your partner. Keep conversation to the level of the weather!

Rugbyplayersarehot Wed 15-Feb-17 11:54:10

Fucking hell op you are a saint.

Cut contact and you will be a lot happier.

xStefx Wed 15-Feb-17 11:56:23

Just do Christmas, birthdays, smile and nod- that will do
YANBU they sound nasty
Congrats on your 2 lovely babies and your lovely sounding DH :-)

happypoobum Wed 15-Feb-17 12:02:30

YANBU I wouldn't bother with them at all.

Mumzypopz Wed 15-Feb-17 12:03:51

Gosh, they sound like normal annoying pils who say inappropriate things. Pretty much like mine really. I wouldn't have bothered trying to involve them in the wedding plans to be honest and I wouldn't have gone on holidays with my lot, but each to their own. Perhaps just reduce contact a bit and create a bit of space between you.

mypropertea Wed 15-Feb-17 12:05:26

Bloody hell, yanbu even if you decide to engineer there premature deaths!

Obsidian77 Wed 15-Feb-17 12:05:47

They sound absolutely dreadful and you've gone over and above the call of duty for them time after time.
You need to be focusing on your own well-being, def avoid them.
Invent instructions from the midwife if necessary wink
Best wishes with DC2 flowers

Bluebellevergreen Wed 15-Feb-17 12:05:51

OP what awful awful people. She is evil.
Avoid. Avoid.
Life is too short to let yourself waste time with toxic people.
Would you like your DCs to pick up on the racism? That only would put me off.
How awful.
Avoid.
You are a saint!

TheProblemOfSusan Wed 15-Feb-17 12:06:28

They sound completely vile. YANBU.

Hastalapasta Wed 15-Feb-17 12:11:37

YADNBU! Congratulations on your pregnancy, take it easy and avoid the toxic inlaws.

I was enormous with DC2, couldn't even wear a maternity dress as it peaked up (tent like) so much! Still have a bump now thanks to diastasis.
No one mentions it though grin

Skooba Wed 15-Feb-17 12:15:08

Sounds like you and DH are treating them like normal human beings, when they obviously are not.

I would decide that from now on as you are a family , you will spend Xmas on your own. Not unreasonable, you can see GPs day after and/or day before.

Why have Xmas wiht your wee ones blighted by them. They won't be wee ones for long.

Why tell them how you voted? They aren't normal people you can have a normal chat with. Start changing your behaviour.

Taylor22 Wed 15-Feb-17 12:15:55

YANBU and I wouldn't allow them to have any relationship with your children. They're Cunts. End of.
Do you want your children mirroring that behaviour.
If your husband try's to force a relationship I would honestly consider a divorce.
I can't believe what I just read. Not allowing my children around these creating would be my hill to die on.

ExplodedCloud Wed 15-Feb-17 12:16:25

You know they'll be saying you're lazy when DH uses the too tired to visit line, don't you?
smile
Yanbu to have a break from them while you get through this pregnancy. You don't need the aggravation.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 15-Feb-17 12:17:47

What does your DH think of their behaviours; he is key here.

Reinforce further your own boundaries and keep well away from his parents. You do not need such toxic people around you or your own family unit.

I would read "Toxic Inlaws" by Susan Forward to further understand the dynamics of power and control being played out here by them.

Sundance01 Wed 15-Feb-17 12:18:40

It is very clear that there have been stresses between you all for a very long time and regardless of any right or wrong in the situation it is clearly causing you distress and anxiety. I suspect the long history has made you very sensitive to her comments and unable to simply shrug them off as most people would - e.g. about your weight

You are a grown adult - no one can make you do anything you do not want to do. They are your husbands parents and you are under no obligation to like them or to have contact with them - just as they are under no obligation to like you.

Decide how much contact you do want to have with them and tell your husband - you must let him make his own decision on how much contact he wants with them - he can have a relationship with them without you.

I would not say anything to your in-laws as yet - this could cause problems in the long term - just withdraw to your own comfort level and let your husband do any explaining necessary. You may find in the future you are able to have limited contact with them or you may find everyone is happier with you slightly out of the picture - including you!

Gwilt160981 Wed 15-Feb-17 12:19:05

Your MIL sounds a rightun'. And very fucking pretentious. Don't blame you staying away. It's not Wales fault what happened to her dad either...And to say all those callous things.... YANBU

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