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Stories from people who eventually left DH because of MIL?

(47 Posts)
Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 21:09:09

Long running history with MIL. Ive read all of the books, tried all of the strategies to get DH on side, but I'm still being punished by DH for not accepting MIL'S intrusive, strange and disturbing behaviour.

It's not direct, obvious punishment either. He just goes quiet on me for a week, there's no sex, no arguments, no affection, little conversation, just the quiet treatment. It lasted 4 weeks quite recently after MIL disrespected me infront of the whole family at a family dinner and blanked me through the meal even after my attempts to speak to her. Everyone noticed. We left early. DH was shocked at her behaviour, but he still punished me with the silent treatment for saying I am now refusing to be in her company.

This week it's because she's sent flowers out of the blue and Ive told DH I don't want to make up with her because I know it's all part of her game playing mentally to get everyone else on side. I've written her a polite letter explaining how she makes me feel, but DH is reluctant for me to send it and have my say too.

Getting really tired of it all now.

Other than this, DH is a kind man and a good father. At what point though does it become too much and at what point do you give in and walk away? I'd appreciate some stories, good or bad please.

Alpies Mon 01-Aug-16 21:17:09

Hi Op, sounds tough. I don't know what to suggest. Sounds like u r fighting a losing battle. I kind of have a similar situation although not as bad. ILs have suggested a sit down and go through everything. I'm thinking of writing everything down and go through it all one by one with them and give it all one last chance.

So odd ur DH doesn't want you to send the letter. Does she know what she does that upsets you? Have u guys got kids?

Leaving your marriage because of ur MiL is kinda letting her win.

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 21:42:30

Yes we have children. DH still wants us all to get along I think. He did explain to MIL everything she has done to upset me in recent years after one of her previous outbursts. He then came home and said he didn't want to speak to me for a while. There's nit much point in him sticking up for me if he's going to punish me for it afterwards, is there?

Alpies Mon 01-Aug-16 22:42:27

Same same here. I feel DH understand what's going on, he kinda sees it but always makes excuses. Once in a while we have a huge row and don't talk for a few days and then it's easier to let it go than have another argument. The vicious cycle continues until the next big row.

We have had several frank chats. He sees it but he thinks it's me taking everything the 'wrong' way. Doesn't think his mum wants to hurt anybody. It's kinda my fault as I'm too sensitive.

He feels in the middle and doesn't understand how to deal with it.

It's such a difficult one because he's lived with her behaviour all his life and prob don't even notice it or learned to ignore it.

What's are your issues with her?
Do u want to sort things out with her? Is it worth the hassle?

For me, my MIL has had zero positive influence in our life since kids were born. Ie if she hadn't been around it would have been better for us all. She doesn't help and hasn't supported us. So I don't see the point in wasting any more of my time With her but I'm feeling the pressure to do it one last time. I guess at this point in my life, I should give it one more try. Sit down , write everything down and go through it point by point. I don't want my kids to grow up without a dad. And more importantly without this issue abt his mum, we are a good team.

It really depends on what she does to annoy you, what she brings to your life and how much all this affect your relationship. Is your relationship worth fighting for? What abt the kids, do they love her?

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 22:43:05

Bumping up

Alpies Mon 01-Aug-16 22:47:42

Everyone will tell u, you have a DH problem not a mil one. But leaving is such a huge step. Have u guys considered therapy? Work through the issues?

Kr1stina Mon 01-Aug-16 22:48:56

Your main problem isn't your MIL, it's you H.

She is making him choose who to support and he's choosing her and not you . this will eventually destroy your marriage if it's not done so already .

im sorry but you can't change him .

Kr1stina Mon 01-Aug-16 22:49:22

Ha ha, X post with alpies !

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 22:50:30

Your situation sounds very similar Alpies. It's so hard isn't it, I find it tormenting when one minute DH appears on side and the next, hes questioning me again.

I'm also quite sensitive OP, but that doesn't necessarily mean we're wrong, we just feel a lot more deeply than others. DH is more black and white than me so struggles to see feelings as a reality of the situation.

If I'm honest with you and myself, the lack of empathy and understanding for my feelings leaks into other aspects of our lives. DH constantly corrects me and perceives things as "wrong" just because he doesn't perceive it that way. I'm guessing your DH may be similar OP?

MIL is very intrusive, controlling with the children, tries to manipulate and monopolise people and situations all of the time. One minute you think she's being g friendly and the next, she's telling you how to run your life and asking nosey questions about finances, that sort of thing.

She likes to tell us how to bring up our children and makes sly under-handed remarks is we pull her up on it then cries and plays victim.My DH also thinks MIL has good intentions, I think she's a narcissist.

bakeoffcake Mon 01-Aug-16 22:52:13

We have a MIL problem. If my DH hadn't supported me we wouldn't still be married. She is extremely interfering, opinionated and often very rude.
I really do feel for you and I think therapy would be a very good idea so your H realised how serious this is.

SandyY2K Mon 01-Aug-16 22:52:38

A friend ended her marriage because of her MIL. Not so much because of the MILS direct behaviour, but because she felt like the second woman in his life.

He linked MILs arm when they went out and would dance with MIL first and ignore her. After 14 years and 3 DCs she had enough.

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 22:53:04

Kr1stina: I know you're right. It's killing off the love I feel for him, our connection, everything really. I really have tried to get him on side and at times he is, but actions speak louder than words and I really can't live with much more of the quiet treatment as punishment for not accepting MIL'S behaviour.
It's depressing and the trust I have in our relationship is dwindling.

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 22:54:44

DH refuses to participate in couples counselling, I have however been going to counselling alone for the last 2 years. You really can't fix a marriage alone though can you.

Alpies Mon 01-Aug-16 22:59:03

I feel for u OP! I know exactly what u mean. I think she's a narcissist too. After our big fight last week, I bought the book 'toxic in-laws'. The reason I did was to understand the dynamics and make more sense of why things are so bad and how to deal with it. I woke up to find the book torn to threads in the bin!!!

I think seeing things and actually standing up and calling it takes balls. Not many men have the balls to stand up to their mum.
Especially if said mum is a manipulative old bitch intent on making u look bad.

Would it be worth writing your husband a letter? Explain how u feel? That sorta worked for me. Because I feel it's tough to have a conversation (or rather arguments) points get lost in the slanging matches etc.

Alpies Mon 01-Aug-16 23:01:44

Cross post!

Y won't be go to couple' therapy? He clearly is not committed to solving the problem! Or even admit to himself that there's one.

bakeoffcake Mon 01-Aug-16 23:03:07

Gosh if he won't go to counselling, what is he willing to do to help with your marriage? (That's a question for him not you)

What does he say about the silent treatment upsetting you?

Kr1stina Mon 01-Aug-16 23:03:47

DH refuses to participate in couples counselling, I have however been going to counselling alone for the last 2 years. You really can't fix a marriage alone though can you

This says it all really . I'm sorry, you sound so sad and defeated . I'm guessing you are worn out by years of trying to make things work .

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 23:04:00

I've done the letter thing too OP and he understands for a few days, then sinks back into auto-pilot taking care of mum mode. We actually don't argue about MIL anymore, if you're still arguing atleast you both still care. We get by on sulking nowadays and I discuss things with my counsellor. It was worse when I was still forcing myself to see MIL from DH'S point of view, since I've put my foot down, I feel much better in myself but it has had huge consequences for my marriage.

Toxic inlaws in great although I wouldn't recommend doing the sit down chat thing with a narcissist, you'll be wasting your time. Save yourself the energy x

Aranpoo Mon 01-Aug-16 23:08:52

Kr1stina: I feel very defeated.

There is a time to walk away I feel. You can't battle on forever, who cares if she bloody "wins" anyway? I just want to be happy.

Bakeoffcake: he tells me he doesn't know he's giving me the silent treatment, that he's not doing it intentionally. I believe him. I think he's just so ingrained in abiding by family rules that he just can't help but feel negative towards me when I don't comply. Family dynamics are sometimes deeply ingrained in people. You can't make every DH see differently, I believe my DH is one of those people.

KramerVSKramer Mon 01-Aug-16 23:24:00

My wife and I have discussed her parents at length tonight. After ten years together and recently two children, she is coming to the conclusion that they are unsupportive, non commital, harsh, selfish and mean with their time and money (I don't mean giving it away, but little things like buying their grandson an ice cream or sorting his room out so he can stay at their house)

The reason for all of this is one of control which my MIL has over each of my wife's siblings to a certain degree. Since she has had far less control over my wife after she left home and we cohabited, she's behaved in this way towards her, even though, factually, my wife is by far the kindest and most balanced sibling/daughter. Much of it is indirectly aimed at me - refusal to help practically because I should, or could do it, despite offering other siblings huge amounts of support both financially and practically because they don't have a partner. So my wife misses out.

It's a frustrating situation for us because of its complexity. There's a doting husband who she has dominated for 35 years. There's a family history on MIL side of disfunction which my FIL side have never understood and have confided in us about. There are other siblings who show similar worrying traits.

it amazes me just how much of a negative impact one misguided and entitled woman can have on a family so OP, I feel your pain. Thankfully my wife has seen just how she behaves.

Alpies Mon 01-Aug-16 23:30:34

It sounds like ur mind is made up. Do u need him financially? Can u do it all on ur own?
Would it be worth taking a break? Make him see how his behaviour is also narcsistic in a way?

I just feel these silent treatments sucks the life out of me and I can't be dealing with that or have time for it. I have 2 kids to look after.

Re sitting down with ILs. I was thinking of getting a therapist to be present as I know exactly what she's gonna say. Play the victim and make it look like I'm in the wrong, 'too sensitive' blah blah blah. What do you think?

SeraOfeliaFalfurrias Mon 01-Aug-16 23:35:50

It is the old trope that you have a DH problem rather than a MIL problem, but in this case it's particularly true. Because whatever the cause for it, what your DH is doing to you is emotional abusive. Withholding affection, withholding sex; of course he knows he's doing it. How do you not notice you're failing to have a conversation with someone who is right in front of you? Do you think abusers are generally in the habit of admitting to their abusive behaviour? He is deliberately punishing you for making life awkward for him around his family. He is punishing you because having the easy life is more important to him than you and your feelings.

It's an old one but that doesn't make it any less true - when a man tells you who he is, listen.

newname99 Mon 01-Aug-16 23:58:10

How often is this happening? I just wonder if you can learn to detach from it. I have the most awful mil but thankfully she now lives in another country.

dh knows she's awful however he still struggled to deal with her.The behaviour is so ingrained, fear, obligation and guilt.As a child dh learnt to disengage when emotions were high, it was a safety mechanism which he still had today.My high emotions cause him to retreat which starts a negative cycle. We have just started to understand the cycle however I have had to lead the way as dh doesn't have a natural ability, he has black & white thinking and is very logical.

I had never met such toxic people until I married dh so didn't have the skills to deal with them.Its been eye opening and made me grateful for the good people I have around me.I have also learned to detach (very tough at times) but on balance I have managed to minimise the impact that outside people can do to my marriage.

proudnewMNaddict Tue 02-Aug-16 00:03:52

LTB he sounds like a real mummy's boy who will never allow YOU to be his number one. sad sorry OP flowers

J0bchang3 Tue 02-Aug-16 00:18:13

Long, repeated shouting conversations in a different language and culture to myself
I didnt understand many of the words, but I understood the sentiments
Looking back I was very polite and respectful to the parents in law, because they were elders
Looking back, the repeated ranting seems absolutely crazy !
I felt that I was not worthy
Did not spend much time with parents in law

The relationship ended after several years and not due any of the above

I would not tolerate such behaviour now

Perhaps some guilt, jealousy, protection, wanting child to do better issues going on ?

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