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to be hating my mother in law at the moment

(28 Posts)
Abubu Tue 25-Aug-09 10:05:55

My twin daughters, husband and I are all a little bit ill at the moment. Nothing too serious but we all have dodgy bowels, feel very tired, one of my daughters was sick last night and I also have a terrible headache. I think it is a virus, picked up by one of my daughters at playgroup last week.

Anyway, hubby took our daughters round to his Nans this morning (my grandmother in law but I call her my mother in law as she is like his Mum as she bought him up).

He mentioned that we are all ill and apparently she used it as a reason to totally blast off about the state of our house. According to her, the house is "disgusting" and that I am lazy and can't be bothered to clean. Apparently it is therefore all my fault that everyone is ill.

I am a working Mum and by the time we have put the girls to bed, prepared for work the next day, packed the changing bag and taken a shower etc it is often already aropund 9.30.

I think she expects us (or me) to sit in all weekend doing housework as I am not living up to her cleanliness expectations.

I guess it is difficult when it is a 2 generation gap, just feel like i can't stand her.

deep breath.... sod her, its your house - dont worry (obviously if your house is worthy of a kim and aggy treatment then i take it back)

Life is too short for scrubbing skirting boards IMO

Abubu Tue 25-Aug-09 10:21:51

Just to add,

It is cluttered, I will admit that. it's not a big house and having twins we have a lot of stuff as there is 2 of a lot of things.

It is in need of a lick of paint here and there but to call it disgusting, I just find so insulting. Plus my husband and I are in an equal relationship - so why is it all my responsibility?

I am dreading telling her that I am pregnant again as I am sure she thinks that I can barely look after the girls (i.e. not the way she would do things) let alone another baby AND clean the house!

beanieb Tue 25-Aug-09 10:27:49

what did your husband say to her when she said this - he defended you of course?

Bathsheba Tue 25-Aug-09 10:37:31

what do YOU think of YOUR house..?

Do you look around it and think "Oh goodness, I do with I had more time to get this place cleaner but there just isn;t enough hours in a week"

Or do you think "You know what, this place is clean enough for us"...

If the state of the house is acceptable to you, then fine...if you honestly do think that the house needs cleaning, then you need to put strategies in place (either time at the weekends, outside cleaners, chores lists etc) to help you manage it.

However it is farily horrid and showing a complete lack of understanding of medical things for your MIL to think that untidy houses cause viruses.

BubbaAndBump Tue 25-Aug-09 10:37:42

OMG, YANBU! How about she gives you a hand and spring cleans it for you while looking after your twins while you go and get yourself a wee massage?

btw, was your DH being the most tactful person in the world telling you she said that?

Mumcentreplus Tue 25-Aug-09 10:41:14

My mum has said something similar in a rather under-handed way..I did tell her that kids get sick..tis their nature..but i know she thinks it's because the kitchen should be spik and span/living-room should be clutter free/windows should be open.. hence the reason they get ill (yeah right)..they just came back from her house (which is show-home status) for a week and guess what? they are sick and have made me ill too hmm..just ignore

Abubu Tue 25-Aug-09 10:41:38

Hi beanieb,

They had a bit of a row, I can't remember exactly what he said he had said back to her, and then he walked out on her.

Apparently she said to him "if you don't like it you know what you can do". So he did.

I just don't know why she has to interfere with stuff like this. Sometimes we go away for the weekend and come back to find she has come in and rearranged our kitchen. We we ask her why and she says "because that is the way I like it".

When we got back from honeymoon a few years ago she had thrown out our rug and replaced it with one they (her and her husband) thought was better.

I think she is just one of life's unreasonable people. But then at other times she can be quite nice.

She's just really hurt me by saying it is my fault that my children are ill.

The trouble is I am very passive aggressive, plus dont want to risk having a bad relationship with her, so i keep my mouth shut, but she doesnt seem to give two hoots about upsetting me.

giveloveachance Tue 25-Aug-09 10:50:15

Hope you are all feeling better. It is a bit of a generation thing - when I was pregnant a lovely lady of near 80 I know told me that her biggest regret was that she spent too much time cleaning up and sweeping the front door step etc and not enough time playing with her two sons. She said you young people (I'm not!!) don't know how lucky you are, you get to spend so much more time with your children, but in my day a housewife had to do the chores first and the children second or be seen as a bad mother!!!

I decided early on a bit of clutter and piles of ironing was a small price to pay for playing with my little one. (having said that, i have had a hard time convincing my in laws!! - my mum on the other hand always says, as long as its not dirty *and it isnt does it matter!?)

So to cut a long story short, she may be feeling a bit jealous that you have the freedom to decide your own priorities.

I would say something to her, don't store it up, as it will eat you up.

beanieb Tue 25-Aug-09 10:57:55

"Sometimes we go away for the weekend and come back to find she has come in and rearranged our kitchen. We we ask her why and she says "because that is the way I like it".

Jesus! that would drive me nuts and I would change the locks.

What a cow!

Pikelit Tue 25-Aug-09 10:58:27

I don't know whether it is just a generational thing because my own mother is extremely laid back about how I live my life. My former MIL, on the other hand, took offence at sharing the same air as me on the grounds that I refused to iron underpants.

ninedragons Tue 25-Aug-09 11:00:03

Change the locks and sneeze all over the old bitch.

TheCrackFox Tue 25-Aug-09 11:02:47

Well done for Mr Abubu for sticking up for you.

Southwestwhippet Tue 25-Aug-09 11:03:52

YANBU - but it is probably a generation thing, my late grandmother was exactly the same. She would come to stay and spend all weekend 'rearranging the cuttlery drawer' or 'sweeping up the leaves' or 'ironing the dishcloths'.

Used to drive my mother bonkers but we turned it into a family joke in the end. Even to this day if someone says they are bored, a likely response is "why don't you go and pick all the leaves off the lawn to help your mother?" grin

I do think your MIL is being very unpleasant to be so upfront with her scorn for your housekeeping methods. I'm glad your DP stuck up for you.

Mumcentreplus Tue 25-Aug-09 11:06:23

I don't think it's particularly a generational mother is only 17yrs older than me..but I feel due to life experiences she feels a clean,tidy immactulate home makes her a better person and good mother...I do strive to be tidier but I'm a bit crap...sad (must have been all those weekends she would make us clean the skirting boards as punishmenthmm)I just can't stand it! grin

IsItMeOr Tue 25-Aug-09 11:06:28

YANBU - you have twins! you work! I am SAHM to one 5 month old and am dreading when he starts to crawl as I think our house probably is dirty enough to make him ill (we have a cat, which doesn't help).

Funnily enough I was just thinking this morning that, given all the labour saving devices we have at home, our grandmothers must have had hardly any time at all to play with their children. Enjoy the playing while you can.

And yay for your DH - didn't he do well?

Well done on rising above it.

IsItMeOr Tue 25-Aug-09 11:07:31

PS Think we have got the same bug as you at the mo sad.

Pikelit Tue 25-Aug-09 11:09:11

My SIL is worse. We kept her at bay for years while the house was crumbling around us but huge renovations mean that she'll be prowling the halls on Boxing Day. Fortunately she is scared of the dog so there will be a limitation to the physical interference possible.

But why do people EVER think it is reasonable to fanny around with the layout of other people's houses?

Abubu Tue 25-Aug-09 11:15:27

The worst thing with the kitchen re-arrangement is that she always thinks she is making improvements but she isn't. Last time she did it we came back to find the utensils and fruit bowl moved right into the middle of the work surface.

We have a small enough kitchen as it is, how did she think we were going to prepare any food with stuff right in the middle?

When i was on maternity she wondered why I didnt invite her round more to help!?

Maybe it's because she would just sit there demanding cups of tea, which were of course never good enough. Apparently our water tastes of chlorine and she doesn't like the tea we buy. Nowadays she brings both her own tea bags AND water. angry

MmeLindt Tue 25-Aug-09 11:17:48

If you are happy with the state of your house and would not be embarrassed to have visitors around, then just ignore your MIL.

And change the locks. She shoudl not be able to come into your house when you are not home and start rearranging things.

Good on your DH for sticking up for you.

MmeLindt Tue 25-Aug-09 11:18:41

OMG, how do you manage not to burst into hysterical laughter when she brings her own tea and water???

Abubu Tue 25-Aug-09 11:25:26

Hi MmeLindt,

Once she came round and filled up the kettle with her water to have a cup of tea later on.
I didn't realise she had already put her water in so chucked it down the sink.

When i realised I just kept quiet and made her a cup of tea with our water.

Guess what - she couldn't tell the difference. Hmm, what a surprise! I think she just feels the need to be right and everyone else to be wrong all the time.

Mumcentreplus Tue 25-Aug-09 11:26:51

nutter grin

IsItMeOr Tue 25-Aug-09 11:30:09

Oh Abubu - she's not well, is she? The teabags I could just about understand, but bringing her own water?! That's not normal.

Could you change the locks?

giveloveachance Tue 25-Aug-09 11:30:33

Oh my! her own tea and water!! maybe when you visit her, take a flask and say you don't like hers either!

If this was a small child, you would say it was attention seeking behaviour, seems the same even though she is an adult - maybe she is a little old and lonely and thinks this will get her attention.

I don't like the state of my house, i don't mind clutter but my dp (via his parents) does, but there is no cupboard space as he is a hoarder, so its a catch 22. I'm happy to rise above it but it does hurt when they make snidey comments, so I can fully sympathise. They think that clutter/ ironing means i can;t cope!!!! they then go on to admire the arty things dd and I have made, the puzzles she can do, and enjoy the cakes we have made for them, all the while tut tutting about the pile of ironing in the kitchen!!

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