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Mil nightmare or am I overreacting? Dh says I am "ill"

(128 Posts)
Marmaladetoast Sun 15-Sep-13 15:43:08

I have posted before about dh, but he has been a bit better, but now this happened.

We have a house abroad that we have decided to let for holidays - we are just starting to rent out. Its not in the UK, its near dh family. We redecorated it this summer, cleaned it, bought new linen and curtains then flew home.

Dh was sent some pics today of the interior and all the curtains have been changed, all the bed linen has been changed. Mil apparently spent 9 hours redoing the curtains and bed linen in all the bedrooms, letting herself into the cellar and going through all the carefully packed away linen and curtains to re do it.

I was beyond furious. Dh was too, until he spoke to mil and she was very upset we are upset and want it put back how it was when ut took her 9 hours to take down curtains and linen in 3 rooms, deconstruct the beds, go through all our stuff to find something else and put it all up again.

she says when she was hoovering the curtains fell down in the main bedroom, apparently the new curtain hooks ( hanging on the new rails ) put up by professional builders couldn't cope with her hoovering. Instead of getting new hooks she changed the curtains in all the bedrooms and all the linen.

I am really angry about it- she didn't ask, I don't believe her story for a minute, and even so why change all the bedrooms round? And is now feeling very upset and angry I and dh are so ungrateful. She had a good old poke round all our stuff which was locked and bil has the key, so he must have given it to her.

Dh got off the phone, says I am wrong to be so upset and angry at her when she was helping. He says he prefers what she has done. He said I must be ill in the head to get so upset. He says I need mental help as I am upset just for curtains and bed clothes.

I am more angry she just did it, without asking, not caring what we wanted and expects praise for it. There was nothing wrong with any of it, just not to her taste.

Am I wrong here? Dh says I need to see a doctor and I am overreacting. He is making me doubt myself. I wouldn't change anyone's stuff without asking, especially if there was nothing wrong with it.

He isn't speaking to me and has stormed off to work, I am still shaking.

JustBecauseICan Sun 15-Sep-13 15:46:20

You are not in the wrong.

It would be an altogether different thing if she had asked would you like some decorating/changing doing and you had said yes. You didn't.

Your husband should be sticking up for you, but I'm guessing he is from a matriarchal (southern med?) kind of family set up where the mammies can do what the fuck they like with their children and their children's families so he probably won't.

I would be more concerned in all honesty at his accusations that you are mentally ill as an excuse to justify what his mother has done. What is your relationship like normally with him?

MaBumble Sun 15-Sep-13 15:47:38

No you are not wrong. And it is not about different curtains. Its about crossing boundaries and interfering. If you had wanted help you would have asked, or she would have offered and you would have been given the choice to accept or not. Doing what did is totally out of order. And your DH knows it.

Kernowgal Sun 15-Sep-13 15:50:23

I don't think you're the mentally ill one here. His mother sounds batshit crazy. Why the fuck would you do that??

Twinklestein Sun 15-Sep-13 15:52:18

This is the most bizarre thing I've ever heard. You don't let yourself in to someone's house & redecorate! Even if you're from a close-knit med family.

We have house abroad, it's not in the country in which my MIL lives, but even if it were there would be no question of her having a key.

You must absolutely stand your ground & tell your husband he's the one who needs the doctor if he doesn't understand why a) this is unacceptable & b) you're upset.

Rosa Sun 15-Sep-13 15:53:46

I wonder if she felt 'your' way was not the traditional way and her way would seem better.
Did MIL know that you had changed / altered everything before you left- or did she just go in and alter everything off her own back ?
To be honest if she is over there and you possibly need help on hand if any rental goes belly up / need urgent repairs etc then you might need to keep them on your good side.
I would be cross if they had known I had left everything ready for rent. Also de constructing beds don't understand that!!!!
However I don't think it is the end of the world - when you go back change it back again and then don't let her have the key.
I would leave it a bit have a cuppa or glass of wine .

skyeskyeskye Sun 15-Sep-13 15:53:54

Agreed, it's not about curtains, it's about interference. It wasnt her place to do that.

Twooter Sun 15-Sep-13 15:55:52

Has she put your new linen in her house?

Twinklestein Sun 15-Sep-13 15:56:08

With rental property you need a house manager not a nutty MIL you can't trust with your furniture...

defineme Sun 15-Sep-13 15:57:02

She crossed many lines. Why let herself in (how rude without prior permission), why clean if you had (clearly feels you're inferior cleaners), why not ring you when curtains fell down and ask whether she should put up old ones or fix new ones?

This isn't just a minor thing, this is (I presume) an income source/business for you.

So so out of order saying you're mentally ill.

Ask him how his dm would feel if you went around to her house whilst she was away, cleaned and refurbished?

My fil has tendencies like this and it's all about control, thankfully dh stands up to him and we're a united front (though I know it's very upsetting for dh).

I'm sorry-I wouldn't know what to suggest if my dh behaved like that.

I would change the locks to holiday home and have a key safe for guests.

DuchessFanny Sun 15-Sep-13 15:59:13

Argh ! This happened to us ! We moved abroad and decided to rent out our UK house.
PILs had a key for the agent, they used it to go in and completely redecorate the entire house, they took down shelves, reprinted all the rooms ' be ause we've never liked that colour' and couldn't understand why we were furious !!
( the tenants moving in liked the house as it was and ended up painting it all back to original colours !!!!)
It made matters worse when they tried to get involved with the contract between us and our new tenants saying they'd been 'left out of the loop' FFS ! They weren't meant to be in the bloody loop !!!
Rant over - sorry ! Yanbu !!

I think the most worrying part of this whole thing is your husbands reaction.

I suspect he has lived with his mothers guilt trips all his life. But that is absolutely no excuse for him to tell you that you are mentally ill and need a doctor.

I haven't seen your other threads, but if you have posted about him before and this is only one example, I would suggest you have a long hard think about what kind of relationship you should be having, compared with the one you have.

Your MIL is crazy btw. I would go apeshit if mine did that.

Pollydon Sun 15-Sep-13 16:04:23

Accusations of being mentally ill because you disagree with his mother = massive red flag.

SubliminalMassaging Sun 15-Sep-13 16:04:26

You are absolutely right to feel angry and violated. She is making out like she was just trying to be helpful but actually she was being meddling and controlling and nosy. I'd be hopping mad too.

NulliusInBlurba Sun 15-Sep-13 16:05:09

"says I am wrong to be so upset and angry at her"

"He said I must be ill in the head to get so upset"

"He says I need mental help"

"Dh says I need to see a doctor and I am overreacting"

Of course your MIL should not have interfered, but the quotes above from your OP worry me more than anything else. It's one thing if the two of you can get annoyed at MIL together, or have a little giggle at her craziness. It's another thing altogether if your H is using that as an excuse to insult you.

nicename Sun 15-Sep-13 16:12:38

Goldfish, just goldfish. On what planet would going into someones house and redecorating be ok (unless on a makeover show!).

Did DH know about it or ask her to do it, I wonder? Maybe she said 'I'll keep an eye on the place and make a few tweeks here and there' and he said 'that's fine, ma'.

Viking1 Sun 15-Sep-13 16:14:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Marmaladetoast Sun 15-Sep-13 16:22:27

Rosa, she knew we were having it redone as we had a family barbecue when we finished, plus she came over quite a bit to see the changes.

Dh has said we won't get someone to look after it for the price we pay his bil. He says to find an agent and it will cost a fortune. He said she doesn't want to change it back and if I care so much I can go in the summer next year and put it how I want it! I know that - but its the knowing she has got away with it that really annoys me. Apparently his whole family are amazed I am so furious at this behaviour. And they all feel sorry for mil, who was just doing her best!

And yes, she does rule the family. We have just moved abroad for dh job, but before then never lived nearer than a 2 hour flight. The rest of the family live 5 mins from her.

Dh says he won't take sides against his family - he doesn't mean me, obviously. He says I am disgusting to insult and call his mother an interfering arrogant woman with no respect or thought for anyone except herself.

I said this to dh- I don't speak the language very well.

No, we haven't been getting on. We used to laugh about her, but now we don't. He had an idea we would move there after his contract here ends and there is no chance of that now. I was iffy anyway, she expects us all to be at hers in any spare time. This wouldn't be happening. The rest of her dc are there all the time though. Wy they have their own houses I don't know.

Dh has been very difficult. He doesn't talk to me anymore, just chatting. This has been going on for ages. He just doesn't seem interested and doesn't listen to me, happy to cut me speaking to change the subject.

I don't know what to do. I don't want to talk to him or look at him. He says we can't spilt up over some curtains but I keep saying its not about curtains and he says it is and I am not right in the head.

JustinBsMum Sun 15-Sep-13 16:22:39

Can you sell the property? Then if you do decide you don't want to stay with 'D'H it is easier to split things.

clam Sun 15-Sep-13 16:31:41

"He says...if I care so much I can go in the summer next year and put it how I want it!"
But you've just bloody well DONE that, ffs, and she's undone it all!
Agree with others who say this is SO not about the curtains.
Like you, I would be beyond livid. Do not let him continue with the idea that you're the one who's weird here.

But also, I would say your problems with this man go way beyond the décor in a holiday let.

Marmaladetoast Sun 15-Sep-13 16:32:05

I suggested it but he won't hear of it. Its his dream home. The dc love it their too, and its part of their inheritance. I can't sell it without his say so.

I have no family in the UK or friends I could stay with plus school- its a nightmare.

He will come home, agree his dm is out of order, and pretend to agree with me and in front of me when she is there, just speak another language and tell me one thing and say another. They will all laugh and I will clench my jaw and pretend I don't care. I have stopped drinking recently and its bloody hard, but it was numbing the situation.

PottedPlant Sun 15-Sep-13 16:32:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Twinklestein Sun 15-Sep-13 16:39:13

Just looked at your other thread.

The real problem here is your husband. If it were me I'd be long gone.

Sell the house, get away from this awful man & his family.

Renting out property is hard work, believe me.

You don't need an agent as you can rent it out yourself via one of the big international sites like However, you do need a house manager who is a professional that you can trust. You cannot leave it to your BIL.

The styling of the house is absolutely key to attracting customers, so
you need complete control over the décor.

This relationship will not work, this venture will not work, so cut your losses & take back control of your own life.

JustBecauseICan Sun 15-Sep-13 16:46:46

It's not about curtains.

It is about a spineless and abusive man who seems to be pointing the finger at you for his and his family's shortcomings.

I could write the book about the furrin MIL wink <gives a secret Ass End wave to Rosa> in that I have just had contact with my own again after almost 10 yrs. The difference is that my dp supported me throughout and never questioned why I couldn't and wouldn't have a relationship with such a vile interfering woman. I never stopped him taking dd (that's where they are right now) but I will not allow some old bitter bitch to walk all over me and my family.

You need to think long and hard (or maybe not....) as to whether you are prepared to put up with his mother being more important to him than you or if he is prepared to change.....or if it's time to get out. Do you have children?

exoticfruits Sun 15-Sep-13 16:47:32

I think that DH is the problem. You don't go around telling people they are mentally ill because they don't agree with your mother!

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