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"MIL" ... can someone try & make sense of this?

(26 Posts)
Carrington1 Thu 04-Jun-20 01:27:41

Hi all,
Cut a fairly long story. My boyfs mum who I will refer to as MIL for the sake of not typing boyfs mum throughout....
We've been together about 18 months, all lovely, fine with his parents, fine with mine...Skype all day every day during pandemic, still going strong.
However, about 2 weeks I bought my bf a new wallet online as his was battered and looked a wreck and I knew he'd like it.. It wasn't a birthday or anything... Just a gift..
He told me today that MIL has also bought him a new wallet. Its not coincidence... He told me she saw the one I bought.

This isn't the first time something like this has happened. When he stays at my Mums during the week I'd always do us both lunch to take to work. As soon as his mum found out, she started makin him lunch on the days he stayed at home. Bf said his mum only did it cos I do him lunches and that she's never done him a lunch in her life.

Another time, bf and I booked a short spa break away, his family found out on the Friday, by Sunday morning his sister and her boyf had booked a spa weekend away...apparently MIL coerced the daughter and her boyf to go... (so her boyf told us). I never want to speak out of line about them but I don't think bf thinks its strange...

I feel like his mum thinks I'm stepping on her toes a tad. If u know what I mean.
We're both 25 unfortunately both still live with our parents and I don't want any awkwardness. Not had anything like this before with previous bfs.

Aibu to think there's an issue?

OP’s posts: |
slangofoillmochara Thu 04-Jun-20 01:42:02

Classic case of you are taking her boy... and no one is gonna be good enough
I would say ignore and don't worry, but this is the kind of thing that could get worse over time if you don't address it

1ForAllnAllFor1 Thu 04-Jun-20 01:48:42

I don’t understand.

I think the fact she went bought him a wallet is weird

The fact she is now making him lunches isn’t weird. It’s days that he is leaving from his parents home and maybe she was inspired by you..

The fact sister booked a spa is also inspired by you.

Jenny70 Thu 04-Jun-20 02:29:56

Agree the lunches is OK, maybe she didn't think he'd like to take lunch, it wasn't the workplace culture etc. Once she realised he did like to take lunch, she decided it would be nice to make it for him.... fine.

Spa thing, slightly odd, but perhaps MIL thought it sounded like sort of thing SIL/BIL would really enjoy, sounds more like she had "light bulb" moment and then got fixated on them going. Odd, but not massively strange.

The wallet thing, very odd. What did your bf say? Mine would be very confused and say something (immediately) like "but you know I got a new wallet last week from Carrington, have you got the receipt to return it?" It's not like people use several wallets at once (like a belt or handbag). If he accepted it and thanked her etc, then you really need to have a word to him to tell him your feelings were hurt that he didn't recognise/acknowledge your gift when his mother basically copied it, it felt to you like it was to one-up your gift (even if it wasn't what she intended, it was how you felt and most people would feel that way).

WhoWouldHaveThoughtThat Thu 04-Jun-20 02:50:50

Why not say to MIL that you are thinking of buying BF a new car and see if MIL buys him one?

MyShinyWhiteTeeth Thu 04-Jun-20 03:54:28

I find this with my MIL and daughter. If I buy her jeans then Nanny will buy her designer jeans and make comments about how poor the quality is of my purchase. She's always got to outdo me and spoil my efforts.

It hasn't got any better over the years and I tend to just keep quiet about my plans. I've got to really think about what I'm saying when I am around her.

copperoliver Thu 04-Jun-20 04:14:10

I think it's a case of she's scared of losing her baby boy and is trying to compete and I think she probably thinks he's going to leave home soon x

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 04-Jun-20 04:23:40

This isn't the first time something like this has happened. When he stays at my Mums during the week I'd always do us both lunch to take to work. As soon as his mum found out, she started makin him lunch on the days he stayed at home. Bf said his mum only did it cos I do him lunches and that she's never done him a lunch in her life.

Please don't get into competitive wifework with his mother. So depressing.

GnomeDePlume Thu 04-Jun-20 05:27:33

I think it's a case of she's scared of losing her baby boy and is trying to compete and I think she probably thinks he's going to leave home soon

I agree with this but it doesnt stop it being strange. My DCs are all in their 20s and have had their plans stalled by the pandemic. As soon as they can they will all be moving on and I will be helping them to pack!

CSIblonde Thu 04-Jun-20 05:34:28

She views all women as competition for male attention, whether it's a male relative like son or husband or male colleague, friend etc. Add onto that a large dose of no ones good enough for my precious little soldier. Run. Fast.

Summerhillsquare Thu 04-Jun-20 05:42:31

MrsTerryPratchett

*This isn't the first time something like this has happened. When he stays at my Mums during the week I'd always do us both lunch to take to work. As soon as his mum found out, she started makin him lunch on the days he stayed at home. Bf said his mum only did it cos I do him lunches and that she's never done him a lunch in her life.*

Please don't get into competitive wifework with his mother. So depressing.

Nip both this and the tension in the bud, or you'll regret it down the line.

Shoxfordian Thu 04-Jun-20 05:44:58

She sounds like she's trying to compete with you. What did your boyfriend say about the wallet? Which one is he using?

ThumbWitchesAbroad Thu 04-Jun-20 05:52:10

I agree - it's straight up competition.

If it had just been the lunches and the spa weekend, then one could think it was "inspiration" - but the wallet proves it's competition.

Why the fuck would she buy him ANOTHER new wallet, when you've just got him one, unless it's to outdo you and your thoughtfulness? No other reason for it.

I agree with others saying you need to nip this in the bud if you plan to stay in this relationship longterm - she wants to be first with her boy forever, and this will lead to some unpleasant tugs of war, with your boyfriend caught in the middle, possibly having to choose sides.

If he can't even see there's anything weird or wrong about it then he's either enjoying the attention, or he's too wedded to his mum to see anything wrong - neither of which are a good outcome for you.

Porridgeoat Thu 04-Jun-20 06:00:12

Lunches ok. Spa ok. Wallet weird

Marnie76 Thu 04-Jun-20 06:04:26

Surely he questioned he4 buying the wallet when she gave it to him. What was her response?

MindyStClaire Thu 04-Jun-20 06:05:10

Tread carefully. The lunch thing could be her trying to be nice (is she furloughed with more time on her hands?) and the spa day could just be a notion she got in her head.

The wallet thing is something my MIL would do. She'd remember "DH's wallet is battered" and forget the "so Mindy bought him one" bit, not in the slightest bit maliciously. One December we were moaning about Christmas shopping, how hard some people are to buy for, how we hate shopping etc. I told her a few things we'd bought for his side of the family. And come Christmas morning, she'd bought better, more expensive versions of all of them. grin She's lovely, we get on brilliantly, I've known her nearly 20 years, it really wasn't done to undermine me/us. She'd just forgotten why her brain made the connections between those people and those presents.

On the other hand, maybe she is marking her territory. I'd be more concerned with how your boyfriend reacts than what she does. If he's capable of standing up for you and isn't blinkered about her actions, then it's not such a big deal.

understandmenow Thu 04-Jun-20 06:26:34

The wallet is weird.

The both of you making lunch for him is even weirder, why doesn't he make his own lunch? Or make yours?

As PP said competitive wife work is ridiculous.

AnyOldPrion Thu 04-Jun-20 06:50:08

why doesn't he make his own lunch? Or make yours?

Does he do something similarly thoughtful for you?

This is the kind of thing I’d have done years ago. I ended up with a horribly unequal marriage, where my ex considered all such activity as being his due. Not saying don’t do it, but if he’s nor reciprocating in some way, then be aware you’re making a rod for your own back.

CharmerLlama Thu 04-Jun-20 07:02:47

I too would like to know what your bf said when his mum gave him the second wallet, and which one he's chosen to use.

Tonz Thu 04-Jun-20 07:03:02

My own mother in law was the same before I married my husband. Anything nice I did for him she had to upstage me. One day we sat and spoke about it and she told me she was afraid of losing him. She knew I was the one for her son before he did. She knew she wasn't going to be the only important lady in his life for much longer and she was scared and didn't know how to deal with it. I was taking her baby away. Things changed dramatically after that conversation and I'm glad we had it

SanFrancisco49er Thu 04-Jun-20 08:36:51

Strangely mine was similiar until we got married. I remember the first birthday my husband had with us together was about 10 months after we started going out.
I knew him pretty well by then and got him some presents I knew he'd love. MIL's immediate reaction was quite upset and said 'Oh dear, you've got him much better presents than me' and just kept going on about it. Subsequently, even if we have bought something together over the years, she often buys us a duplicate or similiar. So odd.
She's very hard work anyway but now we're married it's a whole new level in different ways...we're glad for 3 hours between us tbh.

Bertyb7 Thu 04-Jun-20 08:40:31

I know someone who's MIL is very similar- she had bought her fiancé a watch for an engagement present, even showed it to the MIL and before she gave it to her the MIL specifically told him that she wanted to buy him a watch for his 30th and he had accepted saying 'thanks mum that's lovely' (not knowing that he would have got one from his fiancée)

LouiseTrees Thu 04-Jun-20 08:43:12

I think she’s just scared to be losing him and scared she’s being replaced. While it is a little weird it’s not actually causing you any issue - apart from being a little weirded out. I couldn’t kick up a fuss about the low level issues here. If it escalated though I would definitely have a conversation about it.

Yankathebear Thu 04-Jun-20 09:01:53

The word ‘boyf’ is bloody awful.
For that alone you are being unreasonable.

Carrington1 Thu 04-Jun-20 09:15:58

@yankathebear there's a word that rhymes with your name that perfectly describes you wink

OP’s posts: |

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