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To be upset MiL treats my DC differently?

(185 Posts)
DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 11:26:31

My MIL looks after my SIL's children every day so SIL can work (I might add SILs partner - and dc father - doesn't even work!)

I occasionally ask her if I'm stuck for example in the holidays I might ask for a day here and there. But I always get the impression it's a big ask as she's already got so much on her plate with SILS dc

Tbh that part doesn't really bother me, but what pisses me off is she also takes SILs dc on holiday. While SIL has a nice child free break with her dp. They've been twice this year. whereas mine never even get asked.

I'm just saddened by it and also H never says anything to her about it.


Aquamarine1029 Thu 17-Oct-19 11:30:37

Is your SIL the golden child? It certainly appears to be the case.

DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 11:44:18

Lol I'm not sure what that means sorry 😳

Weird back story actually, SIL is not my SIL she's my niece, BILs daughter. But MIL fostered her and brought her up from a baby as BIL had her at 16 and couldn't cope. So basically for simplicity I say she's my SIL as she is basically MILs child.

Shouldn't make any difference though in how mil treats the grandkids

Spied Thu 17-Oct-19 11:52:18

Maybe you look like you have everything under control and like you don't need a break. Do your parents help you out?
Sounds like she's overcompensating for sils early life and trying to make sure things run smoothly.

GeorgiaGirl52 Thu 17-Oct-19 11:53:05

If SIL is actually MIL's granddaughter who was raised by her as a daughter, then there likely is a special bond and she will be the favorite. That has happened in our family and it is clear to everyone which grandchild id the most loved - even grandmother admits it!

GrumpyHoonMain Thu 17-Oct-19 12:01:44

She’s the first gc who had a horrible start to life and a substitute daughter too. I think it’s natural your mil to care more about her and her kids. Similarly your mum probably cares more about your wellbeing (and your kids) than your db/sil

NearlyGranny Thu 17-Oct-19 12:07:57

Their bond is closer, that's all. It's hard but true. Why don't you and your DH ask MiL away for a little break with your DC and give her a chance to get to know them better?

rebecca102 Thu 17-Oct-19 12:14:05

Golden child= basically the favourite child, can do no wrong and is put on a pedestal over their siblings, their parents will do anything for them but anything their other children want is a hassle.

Haworthia Thu 17-Oct-19 12:16:35

Now you’ve explained the family circumstances it makes sense. I think your MIL feels that her granddaughter had such a crappy start in life, has lacked a relationship with her birth parents, and therefore deserves the extra help and attention.

NoSauce Thu 17-Oct-19 12:18:04

Sounds like SIL has had a rough start in life and MIL has taken that into account and helps her out because of that, maybe?

Also if DH ( and you ) never ask, maybe MIL thinks you’ve got everything covered?

What about your family OP? Do they every help you out?

ShippingNews Thu 17-Oct-19 12:22:08

Shouldn't make any difference though in how mil treats the grandkids

I know it "shouldn't make any difference" but this is real life. Sometimes grandparents do feel differently about one child over another. You can't make everything equal , I wish you could but you can't. If your MIL favours her daughter / grandchildren because of past events , there isn't anything you can do about that.

DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 12:22:48

I totally get she had a rough start in life. however I don't think that makes it ok for MIL to treat her dc more favourably than mine.

my dc are now old enough to now see how the other GC get treated in comparison to them and it's not nice for them 😞

A poster asked if my parents help, yes they do. They know about how MiL is and think it's disgraceful

NoSauce Thu 17-Oct-19 12:25:57

Well, if you’re not happy then speak to her and see what she says?

Does she never see your DC?

DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 12:27:24

If she loves the other GC more that is one thing (although I actually personally think that's a bit shit)

But to ACTUALLY SHOW IT by actively treating them differently and more favourably to the point where the dc notice no it isn't on it just isn't and I can't believe people think it's alright

NoSauce Thu 17-Oct-19 12:30:46

But in your OP you said she couldn’t look after your dc occasionally because she had her other GC everyday while SIL worked, now you’re saying she treats them differently and less favourably?

In what way? Does she remember their birthdays? See them regularly ( without having to look after them )?

You sound a bit jealous tbh.

JassyRadlett Thu 17-Oct-19 12:31:04

Similarly your mum probably cares more about your wellbeing (and your kids) than your db/sil

This is utterly horrible. Do women really think like this - they care more about their adult daughters and their adult daughters’ kids than their sons and their sons’ kids?

My point of reference is fortunately my own mother, who loves and supports us all equally. I cannot imagine being the sort of mother who would care more about the wellbeing of one child than another.

OP, I think your PIL are behaving disgracefully. Even if they do prefer SIL and her kids, they should try to smooth the difference between the grandkids. My own PIL are much more involved in the lives of SIL and her kids as they live nearby and we’re 4 hours away. But they would never favour one set of grandkids over the other. They go out of their way to make my kids feel equally loved. (When we’re there - they don’t visit us because London is Scary so we don’t get that kind of help...)

DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 12:35:38

@NoSauce have you read my op in full?

It's the holidays they get taken on that my dc don't that bother me

And Yeah of course I'm jealous I'm only human !! We can't afford to take our dc away at least twice a year like their cousins get to! We don't ever get a break to be a couple other than being at work. And equally to those feelings I'm upset that my kids are second class citizens and they also know it

thecatsthecats Thu 17-Oct-19 12:37:37

I can't grasp worrying about 'fairness' when someone's life circumstances are so undesirably different from my own.

SIL was raised by her gran as her teen mum couldn't cope. Now she's married to a useless lump who won't look after their kids, and has to work to support them all.

I couldn't summon up the energy to be jealous of someone in such an unenviable position.

Your kids will be picking up YOUR jealousy by the way - if you were blase and said, "Yes, granny sees a lot of cousins because she looks after them, but she does love you just the same" they would think differently.

DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 12:38:04



On the other side of the family I have an ex mil who is the granny of my eldest DC who is from my first marriage. I've had 2 more with DH plus my ex now has 2 stepchildren as well. Exmil considers all my children her GC. And also ex's stepchildren. All five are treated equally despite only my son being a bio GC

Sorry that's complicated haha z

NoSauce Thu 17-Oct-19 12:40:07

Yes I’ve read your posts OP. I can understand that you’d feel upset that your dc aren’t taken on holidays, actually.

How old are all of these children? Are their ages a factor in all of this?

Do you feel like you could talk to her and explain why you’re upset? Is she the type to listen and take it on board? Got to be worth a try if she is.

slipperywhensparticus Thu 17-Oct-19 12:40:40

Chill out, she obviously feels the girl and her useless partner can't cope with them or she wouldn't be so involved

Contraceptionismyfriend Thu 17-Oct-19 12:43:14

SIL was failed by her own parents. MIL had to step up.
By the sounds of it she is now with a useless man and so she and her children are being failed again. And again she has had to step up.

One woman, putting herself and her life on hold for 3 generations. She sounds pretty amazing.

Do your children have two loving and caring parents?

ObvsNC Thu 17-Oct-19 12:48:05

Ah. Stepchildren. There's the problem.

Your MIL is in a difficult place here. She clearly feels differently about your child by your first marriage as is her right to do so, so she treats all your children the same.

DianneWhatcock Thu 17-Oct-19 12:48:08

Thanks @NoSauce and hope my last post to you didn't come across snippy x

I've spoken to Dh about this and he says he is going to speak to her, so we will see 🤔

strawbebbies Thu 17-Oct-19 12:49:10

If it's upsetting the kids I'd definitely raise it with her.

It's possible she just doesn't realise how differently she treats them or hasn't thought about how it would feel from their perspective and it would be a shame for both her and your kids to miss out on having a good relationship without giving her a chance to fix it.

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