Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Think ILs are punishing DH, DC cos of me(13 Posts)
Moved to DHs home country a few years ago, ILs live here but we are still a plane journey apart.
DH hasn't lived with them since he was 18, often in different countries.
When we first moved, they wanted to be overly involved in our lives, would tell us when they were coming, never ask first, often for weeks at a time, wanted to buy our house with us, choose & pay for our health insurance. They would bring rugs & ornaments to our house and put them around without asking.
We politely declined a lot of it.
They were great gps though and would always bring DS1 out for a nice day when they visited - cinema etc.
DH was really slack about contacting them so I would send them emails, pics, updates,cards - they started complaining that I wasn't doing it enough so I told DH about a year ago his family his responsibility to keep in touch.
I still send some photos and emails now and again.
When they would come, we were expected to be with them at all times, out of a misjudged sense of politeness I would cancel on others to stay in with them. I stopped doing this so last two visits one of the nights I went out for coffee or dinner with my friends, DH stayed with them. I kinda realised I was a buffer between them and DH as if I'm not there talking it's really awkward between them.
They often bad mouth DHs bro and make DH out to be the favourite. Even the cards she sends 'jokingly' say "you're my favourite don't tell BIL"
DS2 was born at the start of the year and they seem to have lost all interest in us, emails have become really formal, they never call at all and they've only visited 3 times this year. They said they were coming for Christmas but DH spoke to them last night and said 'oh no we've decided not to, thought we'd told you' This from the woman who got v upset when we visited my family at Xmas a few years ago.
DH is sad and a bit blindsided, DS1 is sad too and I feel guilty.
Am I overthinking this? Feel like DH & DC are getting punished because I'm no longer the good little wife doing what they want. What would you do? Anything? DH really wanted them here for Xmas as its DS2's first and he feels that no one outside of us have made a fuss of him. DS1 was sent something nearly every week and we lived in my home country then so my parents and sisters made a big fuss of him. ILs barely ask about DS2
What would I do? I would jump for joy that my pain in the arse in-laws are not coming for Christmas! The in-laws are being arses and sound like they always have been, so it's not your fault nor is it your problem. Just enjoy a lovely time with dh and your dcs.
DH's family, DH's problem. You have your own to deal with. If he wants time from them, he's got to give them time.
I don't think you have anything to reproach yourself for, your DH should've been making more effort to maintain his relationship with his parents if it matters to him. He's reaping what he's sown.
Thank you all, I just feel like my DCs are missing out, we have no other family in this country and whatever else they are they did make my DS1 feel loved.
I feel sad for DH, when he was 18 they moved to a diff country (military) for a few years leaving him here on his own with no other family (they'd all moved here when he was 14 - v confusing sorry). I think he feels abandoned again.
I will concentrate on making a lovely Christmas for us.
We live physically apart from both our families. Since the DC were babies we have gone out of our way to normalise that for the DC by keeping in touch via phone/FaceTime cards etc and they really do know how much their extended family love them and value them. Your DHs family are clearly bonkers. Maybe you could look at ways to make a remote relationship with your own family work for your DC. Good luck!
Thanks slicedfinger, yes we facetime my parents every 3-4 days and we've been lucky enough to go back s few times and have them visit us.
DH tried to call them a few times since this morning (night time here now) and it seems they're ignoring us!
Bup this is all getting a bit silly- they were over the top and you didn't want that much involvement, now they have drawn back (three visits with flights is not that few!) you are chasing after them. I think it's actually better that a different dynamic has been set.
What is your husband doing now calling them obsessively, leave it! They may be busy, out, not wanting to chat now but happy later.
You need to de-escalate this.
I also don't see why they should drop everything to come at Christmas either, perhaps three times is enough for them too.
I honestly think there is no big issue here.
See their behaviour and especially taking it out on the gc, is enough to make me say thank your lucky stars that they have decided to be distant. They seem like people who can make a lot of trouble for no reason, go back to being nice, back to causing trouble and so on. In life you want less to do with this type.
OP, your DH doesn't have a close relationship with his family. You used to make all the effort until you rightly told him his family, his responsibility. He hasn't stepped up and they have taken the hint and backed off.
If he wants a better relationship with them he needs to step up and do it. I don't know what you want them to do.
Dione has it perfectly. Your Dh wasn't bothered enough to make much of an effort, so why is he sad now? TBH I think you've established healthy boundaries but your dh could maybe call/send pics a bit more often-if he actually wants to feel closer to them.
Yes, we're really looking forward to having Christmas by ourselves and friends.
DH wanted to speak to them today because he left things on a bad note last night. It is confusing for him because if he hadn't asked we would still be under the impression they were coming down.
Thanks for your replies, you've made me see that this is actually an opportunity to establish some healthy boundaries, and it's up to DH now to set the terms if he wants a better relationship with them.
Join the discussion
Already registered? Log in with:
Please login first.