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SIL- abusive?

(19 Posts)
LovelyBath77 Wed 17-May-17 10:07:05

I'm not sure. She treats my brother oddly. Telling him to do stuff. Like telling him to change the babies nappy or what to do. He just goes along with it but seems down. I did say that he's a great guy, and would always help and don't need to tell him what to do all the time, and she said she felt relationships needed to be a partnership. I don;t think that is where one person tells the other what to do though, is it?

Then, there is this thing, my brother and I have difficult parents, and talk about it together, and she doesn't like this. I think, her dad had MH issues and committed suicide, well our parents do have MH issues too and maybe this is difficult for her. But she minimises it, and tries to get me to contact them and triangulates with my mum (who i am NC with).

I find her controlling and feel like I have lost my brother. I'm not sure if she is abusive, she seems controlling, and have stopped seeing them often.

ButtMuncher Wed 17-May-17 10:18:42

I tell my DP to change our sons nappy, usually because he wouldn't think to otherwise and often because I'm in the middle of doing something else. In what other ways does she tell him what to do? Is there any chance she's reminding him because he has a habit of 'forgetting'? My DP can be a nightmare for overseeing aspects of our kids care unless I remind him, but he's considered it controlling confused

sureitsgrand Wed 17-May-17 10:34:57

I ask/tell my husband to do things most days as he would literally do nothing to help me otherwise. He has been brought up to think women should do everything in the house and make a mans life easy. I have been brought up to believe in equal partnership.
It's very difficult and we don't have an easy marriage. His family think I'm very hard on him from what I can gather. I think they enable his outdated behaviour.
If I was you, I'd keep your nose out- but you've possibly hit a nerve with me!
Try living/bringing up dc with someone who does nothing to help without being asked repeatedly. It's soul destroying and exhausting.

NotHotDogMum Wed 17-May-17 10:52:22

She sounds bossy and controlling, but I wouldn't say abusive.

Perhaps he needs a kick up the bum once in a while to remind him to do his share.

He loves her and chooses to be with her after all, so not really your place to judge.

If you don't like her that much why don't you try to spend some time with him alone, or with him and his DC so you can see them and give her a break.

Cricrichan Wed 17-May-17 11:29:40

What was she doing when she asked your brother to change the nappy? How often does he change nappies if he's not prompted? Also some men are very good at making it look like they help out or pull their weight but the reality is different.

LovelyBath77 Wed 17-May-17 11:37:29

Thanks for the other perspectives. It does help, to be honest, to see it from her point of view.

It was kind of the way she said it. She would order him, Get the bag, Change the nappy and so on. Like with small things, so he was running around after her. (she'd be sat with a cuppa and close to the bag but order him to get it and get her phone out for her for example and check it for her messages). Really odd. Like when it would be easy to simply pick up the bag herself. Maybe it is about making a point.

My dad was very submissive to my abusive mum and he was just the same, so I worry my brother finds this normal. I think he should stick up for himself and tell her to get her phone herself...but he just goes along with it and looks gloomy.

ButtMuncher Wed 17-May-17 14:10:30

Sorry I meant to say in the last sentence that my boyfriend DOESNT find it controlling. Oops.

If she's ordering him around whilst she's sitting on the throne doing nothing then yeah, that's not really on.

TheNaze73 Wed 17-May-17 14:15:59

It isn't what you say, it's the way that you say it. Hard to tell without tone.
My gut feel though is she's at the end of her tether as opposed to being abusive

HildaOg Wed 17-May-17 14:45:35

I think it's obnoxious and disrespectful to order another adult to do something. It is verbally abusive.

Often when people feel comfortable in a relationship they forget how to behave decently. Both men and women become obnoxious to their partners, not thinking that had they spoken to like them in that manner when they first met that there wouldn't be a second meeting. Then they wonder why the relationship drifts apart and their partner starts to hate them...

I think you could speak to your brother about it and perhaps offer some suggestions on how to deal with it; couples therapy perhaps. I feel sorry for anyone in a relationship with a bully.

magoria Wed 17-May-17 14:53:31

She sees you says he is a great guy and would always help.

Help what? Help his wife with their child? Helping implies it is her role.

Perhaps she feels it is their shared responsibility and is a little cheesed off at him helping rather than parenting?

Or at him not doing until he is asked/told?

I would stay out of it and let them work their way with their DC.

LovelyBath77 Wed 17-May-17 15:56:33

It was me that said help, not her. I kind of meant help in general, help anyone, he's kind that sort of thing. And he does more than his fair share of parenting, rather than help. He always had the baby in a sling, he was kind of always doing something while she sat about, as if she wants him to see how hard it is or something. I think he needs to be less submissive. She seemed supersede my DH cooked dinner without being 'asked', well in our house we just kind of get in with it, muck in...not order each other around. If DH told me to get his phone, or started telling me to do things, well I wouldn't like that. Anyway thanks for the replies, maybe I will speak to him but she's always there, so not sure.

Jux Wed 17-May-17 16:37:08

The thing with the bag that you've described is odd though.

LovelyBath77 Wed 17-May-17 16:40:13

Do you think though that it may be him enabling her to be like this? My dad was really submissive with my mum and she would order him around as well. It's interesting that he has met a woman that treats him the same.

RebelRogue Wed 17-May-17 16:43:39

I assume you mean surprised. And that's the explanation right there. Your brother doesn't do it without being asked,hence her surprise. And her OTT askingq. I bet she's either making a point,or he tried the "how should i know if you don't ask" excuse and now she is...for everything.

LovelyBath77 Wed 17-May-17 16:59:06

Possibly that's right. He can be quite submissive, he is also quite tired as has a tough job with long hours, so maybe wants to rest a bit when he's at home. Not sure. Anyway thanks for the perspective, It does help. Maybe I feel protective as he's my brother. He could stick up for himself, tell her what to do for a change perhaps! Or I guess if he did it, she wouldn't have to tell him. But the things like telling him to check her phone for messages was a bit odd. He isn't her PA.

sureitsgrand Wed 17-May-17 16:59:06

Bottom line is, it's not your business. You and your brother are grown adults, unless he comes to you for help, it's his family/relationship therefore his concern.

RebelRogue Wed 17-May-17 17:05:17

Go out with him and have a chat. A general one whether he's happy,how things are going etc. Might help to see thing from his side.

GreenHairDontCare Wed 17-May-17 17:08:21

I'm a bit princessy and like to order dh around. It's all very tongue in cheek. Probably looks awful to other people though.

I 'ding' my empty coffee cup until he fills it for eg. I got absolutely SLATED for that on here a few years ago. grin

LovelyBath77 Wed 17-May-17 17:55:49

It's interesting as I can see would get a different response if a poster came on saying her husband ordered her around and dings his cup etc- in fact there was one about her partner treating her like a PA (think that was a LTB response).

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