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to feel so so so very sad for DH and that its all my fault

(28 Posts)
tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 21:16:20

Your advice is really needed......I am feeling really really upset sad

DH and I have been together for 13 years, married for 3 years. His mum has always had a drink and anger problem since the death of my DH brother from a cot death. As DH and I were dating I often saw her aggression and violence towards my DH and his dad and me on one occassion, this was always hidden from the rest of the family. The rest of the family appaered very close, every christmas together, never did anyone go to their inlaws etc, headed up by DH nan. They are all heavy smokers but nobody was aware just how bad DH mums drinking was.

When we married we I surpose broke the tradition by spending half the time with my family too, it was hard work being around his mum and putting on an act everything was ok. Over the years we saw less and less of his mum as she worked unsociable hours and to be honest was hard work to be around. DH saw lots of his dad but if his mum found out she went mental so it was hard.

Then the time came for our first baby and I knew DH was very very worried about this and his mum. He called her and explained we were worried about her smoking and drinking and she needed to sort this out.......this was the first time DH or anyone had confronted her about this.

The day our son was born she arrived drunk and crying he was going to die, it was just terrible she finally left and I just cried all night, then days later we were left wondering why the rest of DH family hadn't visited..........she had told them she had been banned from seeing our baby!! This was not true at all.

All his family refused to believe our version of things, massive arguments followed and his nan died in this time. We are now 2 years on, most of his family have never seen our LO and live yards away.DH has tried and tried. He has worked hard to encourage his mum to visit and she says she will next week........I hate her but will do anything to make DH happy.

We are due to have our second baby soon, Christmas is coming and DH has never been so low.

This evening one cousin who had once or twice visited our son (under cover) popped up on facebook. I said she must pop round.......she replied only when YOU applogise to my family for banning x from seeing your baby!

I hate this evil situation where people seem to love making others so unhappy.

Thank god we have my family but DH is so sad.

What do I do......feeling so lost.....

HecatesTwopenceworth Wed 02-Sep-09 21:22:31

What can you do? You've tried to tell them the truth but they don't want to hear it. They prefer to believe his mother. That's their choice.

But it does mean that they are the type of people who take sides, who try and convict someone without ever hearing them out and who hold grudges.

As an outsider, I have to wonder why you'd want people like that in your life anyway.

I suppose your dh could write to them all, telling them what actually happened, but let's be honest - they'd not believe him and they'd all then turn round and accuse him of attempting to stir it up, to badmouth his mother.

However you look at it - you lose.

My advice would be to be happy in your own little unit and spend time with those people who deserve to be in your life and who have positive things to offer you, not a toxic cloud to puff over you!

You can't make people be what you want them to be. Let these people go. Let this dream of how family 'should' be - go. Get on with your life and be happy with it.

cariboo Wed 02-Sep-09 21:25:22

hmm very odd post

ginnny Wed 02-Sep-09 21:26:16

Its not your fault and you shouldn't be feeling guilty at all.
You didn't ban her, although I wouldn't blame you if you had. I had to ban my Dad from seeing ds1 after he turned up drunk at the hospital.
Can't you use the contact with this cousin to put your point across, ie tell her that MIL was never banned.
Of course you feel for your DH but he knows you aren't to blame.

HecatesTwopenceworth Wed 02-Sep-09 21:26:47

what, mine? It's just my opinion. given that she asked for opinions! You can't force people to behave how you want them to and there comes a point when you should just walk away.

ginnny Wed 02-Sep-09 21:27:04

What's odd Cariboo??
hmm

KIMItheThreadSlayer Wed 02-Sep-09 21:28:18

If I were you I would reply on face book that you did not ban x from seeing your child, she turned up pissed and upset you all by saying your baby was going to die,

I think you should leave the drunk cow to stew and not involve her in your family at all, your DH must see you are better off without her

tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 21:28:53

For the bottom of my heart thank-you HecatesTwopenceworth.......I needed to hear that.

I feel my son has lost part of his wider family.......keep thinking about school projects on family trees........ Yet they are so horrible I wouldn't want them around him anyway....But he will ask why when he is older.

My DH owns half a businness with an uncle who after bullying my DH almost to suicide agreed that they would never talk about anything but work again......Stuipd thing is this uncle never sees DH mum his own sister hmm

Your right I can never change them, I hate being so hated though it makes me feel sick but not as sick as the thought my DH is so unhappy.

HecatesTwopenceworth Wed 02-Sep-09 21:31:05

Is there any way you can sever ties like this business? Maybe move away? Get some distance, build a life that doesn't involve them at all?

HecatesTwopenceworth Wed 02-Sep-09 21:32:32

- oh, btw - I don't mean other end of the country or anything! grin just something to make you feel like you are making a fresh start.

Fluffypoms Wed 02-Sep-09 21:32:49

hecates I agree with you

PaulDacresCrackWhore Wed 02-Sep-09 21:32:57

Seconding what Hecate said - she is very wise. Is it worth getting your DH a copy of a book called 'Toxic Parents' - it's been well read and used by a number of MNers on the 'Stately Homes' threads to help them come to terms with not being able to choose their family. Good luck to you both. Oh, and congrats on DC2 smile

tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 21:33:21

What's odd Cariboo???
KIMItheThreadSlayer thanks I have just done that , she then went offline so I don't know what she thought.
ginnny I do feel guilty......I just feel DH has been suffering for so long. How were things with your dad since?

tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 21:36:51

PaulDacresCrackWhore thank-you that books sounds perfect!
I was also wondering about Relate as DH just says so little.....just cries and then says, I hate them lets just move on etc.

DH has been talking about moving away but we depend on my family for emaotional suppport and childcare and we can't go far. He does need to find a way to leave the business.....he is scared I think.

MyCatIsAFleaBagNoMore Wed 02-Sep-09 21:37:27

I'd want to know what his mum has actually said to the family. What reason has she given to them for being banned (I know she isn't but she must have told them some reason).

I think though that Hecate is right. You need let them go. If DH has tried really hard and they don't want to know, then that really isn't his fault.

I feel for you and DH though. But remember, all your DS wants is his mum and dad, he wont be sad not to have the rest providing you are there IYSWIM

tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 21:43:12

Yep ISWYM MyCatIsAFleaBagNoMore
DH thinks his mum said very little to the family, she obviosuly said "they won''t let me see him...." but after 2 years how much more could she have said. She has seen him on birthdays and at Christmas when dragged round by DH dad but the rest of the family either don't know this or have chosen to ignore it.

I think she must say things to them but DH thinks his family enjoy creating arguments and his mum bearly sees them......I just don't know.....

MyCatIsAFleaBagNoMore Wed 02-Sep-09 21:47:09

I think your better off without them.
Of course, not helpful for your sad DH. Perhaps you can show him this thread? What about some counselling for him?

tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 21:48:49

Yes I was wondering about Relate?? I don't think he would go on his own....

ginnny Wed 02-Sep-09 21:49:01

I think your DP could probably do with some counselling. It does help. He might just need the 6 free sessions on the NHS to sort things out in his mind.
When I threw my Dad out of the hospital it was the first time in my life I'd ever confronted him about his drinking, but I told him I wouldn't let him hurt my ds the way he'd hurt me. From then on I refused to see him when he was drunk and to his credit he didn't drink when we saw him for a good few years although he let me down again about a year before he died and I didn't see him. I'm always grateful for those few years, he was a proper Grandad to my ds and he has good memories of him, which is more than I had to be honest sad.
I agree with Hecate. Concentrate on your own little family and don't let them spoil it for you.

MyCatIsAFleaBagNoMore Wed 02-Sep-09 21:52:50

I think that some sort of counselling might help if you think he might go. Relate could be good so you can discuss ways of dealing with it as a couple.

groundhogs Wed 02-Sep-09 22:00:17

my mum fell out with her family when she married, she cut all ties, except with her brother and his family. She didn't see her mum or dad, or sister for 27 years. I was 23 when i met my grandmother on mums side. Am 41 now btw.. Ok so i've been away, but i do make effort to see them all whenever i can, we're not mega mega close, but i know they all care for me, and for my ds. My mum didn't really have as dramatic a reason for cutting ties, it was just the end of a long tether.

So if dh has to cut ties, or whatever, just so you know that things can recover, given willing on both sides of course! My suggestion, you send fb message to the cousin, saying exactly what happened, that you'll take lie detector tests if they like! Lol!

Sounds like the cousin might be a good person to try clearing your names with. Otherwise can you not turn up at a large family gathering and in front of them all, ask his mum to say exactly what you said to ban her?

I know if i were you, i'd want to clear the bad names, then i'd leave em all to it. They are not good friends to have. And you dear op, are SO not to blame at all for any of this, this is the doing of a lying drunk!

tryingtobemarypoppins Wed 02-Sep-09 22:01:30

Thank-you all, I feel better for getting this all out! ginnny thank-you for your story.

I will ask our GP about counselling, I didn't know this was free either.

Thank-you all xx

Snorbs Wed 02-Sep-09 22:05:08

I think your DH's mum could well be playing "triangulation" games where one party provokes two other parties to fall out. It's partly a power game, partly an attention-seeking thing, partly a love of drama, and partly down to just being more than a bit screwed up.

Heavy drinkers also commonly surround themselves with drama and crisis after crisis. Sometimes this is a direct result of being drunk a lot of the time. Sometimes it's because if there's lots of drama and crises then there are loads of convenient excuses to drink ("You'd drink too if you had the problems I've got..")

It is entirely possible that your DH's mum's recollection of what happened in the hospital has no basis in reality. She may genuinely believe that you banned her. It's also quite possible that she has no real memory of what she said or what you said and so has fabricated a story to fit the little she does remember and now has to defend that story to avoid having to admit she was so drunk she doesn't know what happened. You will not be able to convince her otherwise so don't bother. If other people prefer to believe her rather than you, after all this time, then let it go.

In situations such as this then often the best approach for a bystander is to strive to have as little involvement in the game-playing and drama as possible. It doesn't (necessarily) mean cutting off all contact. But it does mean just walking away when the blaming, triangulation and all the rest of that sordid, childish crap starts up.

Finally, it's not your fault your DH has a screwed-up mum and a family who prefer to enable her problems rather than confront and address them. It's not your DH's fault or responsibility either. His responsibility now is to himself, you, and your children.

ginnny Wed 02-Sep-09 22:23:18

Totally agree with Snorbs.
Alcoholics will always try and shift the blame for their own appalling behaviour on to someone else. Usually they can't even remember what happened but they will twist things round to make everyone and anyone responsible for their actions. Its all part of the illness, but it makes it impossible to deal with them in a normal rational way.
She was completely out of order, but in her own twisted mind she has made it your fault.
Your DP is lucky that you are so caring and concerned for him. My exP just washed his hands of the whole situation and it always felt like just my problem.

tryingtobemarypoppins Thu 03-Sep-09 17:43:41

Thank-you Snorbs and ginnny what you have said makes sense. Its still hard to understand why a whole family can't see her problems and love to hate me so much, thats hard to take to be honest. They are just so hypacritical when they hardly ever see his mum to know she is drunk! This must all go on over the phone I think.

I think the counselling will really help, just got to get DH to go now!
Thanks again so much.

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