MIL. what would you do? Am I out of order?(16 Posts)
I'm ready to be flamed and told to get over myself.
My MIL is a widow. Didn't get on FIL and they lived single lives. DH would be there as an emotional crutch and friend to her when she'd rowed with FIL etc. IE: she'd call him for advice and a friendly ear. She doesn't have and has not had any friends in adulthood. He has always done her DIY, tidied her garden, taken her shopping and out for coffees on the weekend. He would/does call her everyday even if we are on holiday abroad or having a rare weekend away. She has been diagnosed with alhziemers recently. Now things have stepped up another gear. She is still able to live alone, and can pop out on her own and knows her route home etc. We live 20 mins away from her, and every bloody weekend he is with her. DH has 3 siblings. 1 helps and the other 2 not so much. I keep saying he needs to get the other 2 more involved. Am I being unkind in wanting a whole weekend without him saying. ..I just need to pop and see my mum!! I just want the other 2 siblings to help out more. I've suggested they make a rota. So every sibling takes a turn on the weekend, but the others aren't so keen, as feel if they see her during the week for half an hour they've done their bit that week. 1 silbing has teenagers and the other doesn't have kids. We have 3 kids (been together for nearly 20 yrs) and the other sibling who helps out doesn't have kids. I just wanted a rant I suppose and if it was my mum I'd want to be there for her, but every weekend?! I'm not so sure. Perhaps it says a lot about the state of our marriage.
Forgot to say. All siblings live within 45 min drive to their mother.
Part of me thinks he's really decent type in caring about his mum and keeping an eye on but I get the frustration of the routine of it being every weekend if he's there for ages and ages.
How long is a visit?
Is there a part of the day/week he could see her ( or you all go with him) that doesn't annoy you so much e.g. you getting a lay in, you at the gym, you out elsewhere?
Yes the other sibs should help more but its hard to force them without it descending into a row, if they wont have you looked into getting her some paid help? She may be entitled to some allowances depending on her finances?
What do you singers he's at his mums?
Is it always planned ornlast minuet?
I'd leave him too it and orgainse yourself and not wait around
You're not being unkind in wanting a weekend just for you and your family. It's time for the other siblings to do more, but it's going to be difficult for people to change their routines & people tend to slot into fixed roles in a family.
We have a similar set up but only dh and his brother . The brother takes her shopping on a Friday afternoon , and pops in at the weekend for coffee / takes her out but not every weekend . He rarely phones her in between . Dh goes one evening a week ( usually the same one unless I need him to swap) and usually goes in one day at the weekend , either for a couple of hours to cut the grass / have coffee and takes her out if time permits . He doesn't like missing a weekend but will if pushed . I've been NC with them for about 20 yrs so she phones him during the day at work as she won't ring here in case I answer. I don't generally moan because I have a widowed mum and he is always over there doing diy / gardening or something so it does cut both ways . I think I find it more irritating because I can also go when we go to my mums ( if I want to) whereas with his he has to do it alone so it feels like more of an infringement on our time even though in the great scheme of things he spends 6 times more time at my mums . YANBU to think that the other siblings need to step up a bit and he could knock the phone calls back a bit .
I think he needs to get the others involved more. Not just for you to have him for a weekend - which is not selfish BTW - but also because things are likely to get more difficult and she is going to need more help in the future. It won’t be fair if that’s left to one or two children. Nor will they understand how tough it is unless they are also helping out. It’s best that they are more involved now so that they can make joint informed decisions when the tough choices need to be made.
Thanks all for your replies. Yes he is a decent caring sort pancakeflipper.
It is just for an hour or 2 usually. We have her for lunch some Sundays as well.
I know the others need to step up, but he doesn't like to ask, as never wants to rock the boat. Think like you said stichintime he has kind of slotted into 'the role' of weekend visitor.
Greentulip, I used to hang around waiting, but not anymore. Quite often me and the kids will just go off and do our own thing. He's still often out when we return, so never misses us
His sister looked into financial help and she wasn't entitled to any.. thanks for the idea though minidoghugs. Even if she had some help, I think he'd still feel duty bound to go.
It is tough isnt it it floralnomad. Infringement of our time is exactly how it is/feels. He always says to me that I have a problem in that I want 'family' time as he can be with us all!! Iwouldliketoknow, i think all I can hope is that the others chose to help out a bit more of their own freewill. He wouldn't want to upset anyone by implying they aren't pulling their weight. Thanks for taking the time to reply everyone.
I'm in a similar situation - my DP father is terminally ill and has been getting a lot worse recently. SIL doesn't do anything for him, in fact they haven't spoken really since he got ill.
So I completely understand your frustrations about others not pulling their weight - hopefully they will step up since the diagnosis. From my experience, I'd just say try and get on with it the best you can - I always hoped it'd get easier and more people would help FIL but it never happened. I work from home and it's been really hard trying to find the time to work. Hope things get easier for you and the siblings help out more!
Sorry I agree with them, it's not their responsibility (or your husband's) to look after your mum, but he's set a precedent. Lovely if they want to, but it should never been expected - does the mum expect it though, or just you?
I imagine he would find it very difficult to lessen his visits now, having been such a huge support to her for so long.
And his siblings might have the attitude that he’s trying to bail now that it’s got harder. Or resentful if he’s seen as the favourite child.
I know that’s unfair. I realise that he’s been a fantastic son.
Can you have a family lunch to chat over the change in support that MIL needs? Visits spread throughout the week, phone calls etc. As well as sharing the responsibility of POA, medical appointments, sourcing practical support such as meals on wheels, reminder systems etc. Discuss between you all what needs she has and might have in the future. Agree how to share the responsibility so that she feels as supported and loved by her family as possible.
I think you need to leave him to it but that he should be prepared to ask one of the other siblings to do the odd weekend if you have something special planned.
I don't know what to suggest, late-DH used to do a lot for his mum - popping in almost daily, longer visits at the weekend etc.
His sibling is about 45 mins away and did less day to day popping, but had mum to stay a couple of times a year.
When DH got ill, sibling got more involved on a weekly basis, plus sorted carers to do friendship visits etc.
It is easy for your DH's siblings to let him take the slack, and he doesn't want to push the issue.
Honestly, I wouldn't see it as a chore or something that people need a 'rota' for! If he wants to see his mum that's lovely, he sounds like a very kind man. It's a shame the other siblings don't, but I assume they are adults and that's their choice. Pressuring them may make them want to step back even more!
If it were me, I would be going round with my husband. I don't adore my MIL as such, but I treat her like my own mother as she is family too. Do you maybe have other issues with her that have been a catalyst for this resentment?
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