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in laws keep excluding me - really getting me down - any advice

(54 Posts)
ashisha Mon 26-Aug-13 14:11:22


I got married straight out of university and have been married for 16 years. I have 3 children. My husband is very loyal and protective of his family. He has 4 sisters.

We visit his family every week when his whole family get together. The family are very polite and courteous towards me but never include me. The only conversations that take place between us centre around the kids whom they all adore. My mother in law is ok but she's very selective about what she tells me compared to what she tells her daughters. Whenever the sisters chat they will always to do it away from me and I seem to be most often left in front of the TV.

Whenever there is something going on in the family I often hear about it 3rd hand. Whenever we attend any functions the sisters all sit together and leave me out.

I have spoken to my husband about this numerous times and it has just caused arguments. His final word on the topic is that they are the way they are and I am the way I am and I just have to let it go. He has never intervened and nothing I could do would make him.

I have spoken to his sisters about it a couple of times but they haven't taken any notice. We are culturally close knit so I have to regularly deal with them. I try not to let it get to me but I find it very hurtful. I went through a lot of bullying and exclusion all through school and it feels exactly like that.

My husband is their only son so he is expected to make financial contributions towards his family. I don't mind for his parents so much but towards his sisters for weddings too. I hate that he gives his sisters money when they make me feel so bad. Again there is not a lot I can say to my husband as it's an argument I wouldn't win and it would cause endless arguments.

It makes me feel so sad but I need to find away of visiting them without feeling so bad each time.

GladbagsGold Fri 30-Aug-13 14:35:41

Those visits sound horrible. I'd take a book or something to mumsnet on. Or school reports you need to read. Just basically making myself at home. You see them so often there can't be that much to chat about anyway.

DontmindifIdo Fri 30-Aug-13 14:39:38

OP - it could be your DH is one of those blokes who doesn't want to admit there's a problem, because he can't see a solution to it, so would rather pretend there's no problem. If you talk to him again about it, but this time offer a solution at the same time, he might be happy to be on board with fixing this issue (and more likely to fix the issue).

My suggestion would be to tell your DH you think that his sisters are nice woman but just don't know you so are excluding you because they don't know you well enough to chat too, whereas there's their other sisters and their mum in the same room, then they'll just talk to them because they know them better (you might think this is bollocks, but it's a way to say there's a problem without saying your SILs are bitches to your DH). So your solution would be to arrange various situations where you get each one on her own, if there's another family member htere, then they will talk to them, but if it's just you, then they'll talk to you and get to know you better. Suggest you start with picking a film, your nicest of SIL and say that DH doesn't want to go to see it with you, will she come along? Invite MIL over to lunch in the week when the SILs are all at work, invite another SIL for a coffee or to go see an exhibtion at a local gallery etc. (this means your DH will have to be on board enough to be happy for you to go out in the evening while he looks after the DCs) Invite one of your married SIL and her DH to your house for dinner with you and DH.

Get your DH on side making this a 'project' and he can see that you are making an effort with them individually to get to know them and them you. Stress it can't be a big group as they will automatically revert to just talking amongst themselves and the whole point is to try to force a situation where you can get to know them.

If after a few months (maybe do this between now and the new year) there is no improvement on the group visits, then you can go back to your DH and say that your plan hasn't worked, can he think of something to help?

DontmindifIdo Fri 30-Aug-13 14:41:44

oh and while I can't help with the financial situation, at least if you get on with them better it won't be quite so hard to pay up...

JustinBsMum Sat 31-Aug-13 13:38:16

OMG justanuther , your poor sis.

We are all on this planet once (ok some here might disagree) and to have your life ruled by being a skivvy to in laws is just awful. so sad.

And what is it with these MILs, is it that they have no control over their lives (decisions made by their parents when they are young) so that when they can wield power they do it maliciously.

My DM made her dil's so welcome, and I had good relationship with my ILs. Why would anyone want it otherwise?

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