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If you split from your partner, did your In-laws help you after the split.

(123 Posts)
florentina1 Sun 05-May-19 13:30:07

Sorry if this is an obscure title but I am all over the place. My son has told me that he and his wife are separating, I love them both so much and I have a good relationship with my DiL There is no-one else involved. I am devastated but I know I have to put that to one side and concentrate on them.

I will phone my DiL in a few days, but any advice from you own experiences will be so helpful.

popcorn321 Sun 05-May-19 13:39:17

Mine didn't. MIL called me once after a few days. My sil texted. I was heartbroken at their la k of compassion care love (2DC) please don't leave it so long. I get that you're probably trying not to interfere and that's sensitive of you and lovely. But please please don't abandon her or let her feel abandoned. You sound lovely btw. (NC for this)

Madamedeluxe Sun 05-May-19 13:41:27

My mil called round once a week after we split then I never heard from her again which I have been hurt by. I think you should ring her and offer your support although I appreciate it would be hard to get right.

Madamedeluxe Sun 05-May-19 13:42:17

That’s unclear sorry - she called round once only.

nrpmum Sun 05-May-19 13:42:44

Mil did not, no. You sound lovely. Please do keep in touch with her.

Madbengalmum Sun 05-May-19 13:44:19

Never heard anything from mil, very sad, as i thought we had a decent relationship.

LittleCandle Sun 05-May-19 13:44:48

FIL was already dead. MIL had dementia and didn't know who anyone was. SIL pretended I didn't exist and her daughter became even more of a condescending cow than she had been before, and that is saying something! His cousins were very good at spreading the truth around, not the sanitised version he fed everyone, claiming he had no idea why we'd split.

KylieKoKo Sun 05-May-19 13:52:03

In a lot of cases I think gps stay in touch with exes and are hostile to new partners even if they met well after the split.

I think you should call her and let her know you're still there for the children. One thing to note is that there are probably a lot of things that you don't know about the split - you say there is no one else but I don't think either of them would disclose it to you if there was. Also I think you need to be aware that your son might be uncomfortable if you appear to favour dil over him.

Birdie6 Sun 05-May-19 13:54:57

No, they just drifted away. One SIL remained fairly friendly - she works at my DC school so I saw her sometimes and she was always pleasant. But the others just didn't keep up any contact. It didn't really bother me - my own family were supportive and I didn't need anyone else.

Oldbutstillgotit Sun 05-May-19 14:09:11

As soon as exh and I separated, I never saw PIL again. No cards , gifts contact with DC either .

florentina1 Sun 05-May-19 14:11:45

I wonder if there is anything that MiLs did that really helped. . She only has one other person in her life so I really think she will need support. She is very close to all of my other children so I know they won’t abandon her. Those of you who did not feel supported, may I ask what you would have liked to have happened. We are not the type of family to take sides and, from past experience, they will not criticise each other to us.

Longtalljosie Sun 05-May-19 14:16:34

I think just a quick text saying that you won’t stop viewing her as family and you’re so sorry to hear the news.

Mistybee Sun 05-May-19 14:19:18

My (late) MIL walked me down the aisle when I married her son

When my FIL was dying, I was there every day 9.30-2.30 making sure they were both ok

When her son told her we were getting divorced, she stopped talking to me

I felt so hurt

Springerspaniel88 Sun 05-May-19 14:21:07

I think it's nice to be supportive towards your DIL just don't push your son away in the process. My DH's parents have always been so over the top in supposedly supporting his ex that they made it very clear they were siding with her and pushed him away in the process. It was a mutual split his ex was just very bitter when he met someone else and his parents clearly didn't like it either. My DH's parents actually went as far as to invite ex DIL to family events instead of their son or us as a couple. We have a child together now who they don't see as a result of being so intent on supporting the ex when actually there was no need to take sides like they did.

rejected2012 Sun 05-May-19 14:37:28

In this scenario, I am an ex whose in-laws have sided with . He left me for OW when I was pregnant. Admittedly I was angry at the time but I never said anything to them but EX's family have completely sided with me it's actually uncomfortable and suffocating. This has meant that ex is not involved with DS because his DW is not comfortable with him seeing our DS without son and it's all about of a mess . I feel responsible for the rift in that family and because of it my DS has never met his dad nor his other sibling and it's making me really sad . I don't want to stop my DS from having a relationship with them but ex says it's my fault he and his wife and kids aren't welcome in his family. It's all a big mess really .
Like pp said , @florentina1 support your son without feeling the need to take sides .

rememberatime Sun 05-May-19 14:44:07

My ex MIL was amazing. I have no family in this country, so she helped me a lot (even though the split was my idea). She took me places, helped me move and still sees me at least every month. We have worked hard to maintain a relationship. I even see her on Xmas day. we just avoid talking about her son... and she's ok with that.

1moreRep Sun 05-May-19 14:51:29

op my ex dp has no parents so my mum helps him with child care. i have no problem with this whatsoever as my exdp is a wonderful person and we are kind to each other.

i would send a text and offer help with childcare etc

MillicentMartha Sun 05-May-19 14:52:38

My exFIL sent me birthday cards with a cheque and Christmas cards until he died. He was a lovely, old fashioned gent. I didn’t see him again as my exH hated the fact that he had any contact with me. My exBIL sends Christmas cards and sends my DSs birthday cards to my house. I’d known him longer than I’d known exH and was FB friends etc, but exH asked him to defriend me as ‘it upset his new wife,’ (the OW.) I haven’t seen him in 8 years.

My family didn’t contact exH again. But he’d been the one to have an affair and leave so they were looking after me. They only knew him through me.

Napssavelives Sun 05-May-19 14:53:48

My husband walked out when I was pregnant, already have 2dc together. Not once have my in-laws asked if I’m ok, asked about the baby or my children. They are pretending it isn’t happening.

Madamedeluxe Sun 05-May-19 15:02:04

I would have loved ex mil and fil to have continued to see the dc through me even if it was just occasionally taking them to the park or for tea as exh went through long periods of not seeing the children at all.

We had a messy divorce and fil once told me he didn’t approve of his son’s actions but it was hard for him to get involved. I understood and was glad he said that as mil disappeared.

florentina1 Sun 05-May-19 15:29:33

Thank you all for the comments. There are lots of things to think about. It is a fine line and of course I want to be the best for both of them and just don’t know what that is.

Maybe83 Sun 05-May-19 15:35:33

Yes my ex mother stayed in contact.

She actually paid me his maintenance when he walked out and left me completely fucked with dd. Over the years as dd has grown older and I am in a new relationship it has tapered out. But she always always is there for dd. I know I could ring her if I needed help.

Texts me for xmas my birthday and other special events during the year.

My MIL gets on with all of her children's ex and stays in contact. Her position is they are her grandchildren mother and anything she can do to help she will. She also gets on with current partners. Shes a pretty special person I think. I got lucky with both of my MIL experiences.

funnylittlefloozie Sun 05-May-19 15:36:29

Like Oldbutstillgotit , i never heard another word from my ILs after exH and i split up. Not even a Christmas card, and interestingly, nothing for DD, either. I dont know when my ex-MIL last sent her a birthday card. ExH never bothers taking her to see them either. The whole lot of them arent worth a second of my time.

SimplyPut Sun 05-May-19 15:42:46

My Pil attended their ex DIl's second wedding. Fil walked her down the isle.

She sends them Mother's and Father's Day cards etc. Still very close considering bil and ex sil divorced 24 years ago.

ScreamingLadySutch Sun 05-May-19 15:42:50

Florentina I think you will find that there is someone else.

Dr Frank Pittman (an infidelity expert) said that in 30 years of therapy he only met 3 men who left to be on their own...

So what will you do then? Because that would be hard. I am afraid I hate cheating and betrayal so much that I could not be neutral. I would tell the cheater clearly that their behaviour was unethical, and that whilst I loved them, they needed to accept that I did not approve of that part of their character. There are many ways of showing unhappiness - open your mouth, write a letter, phone a counsellor, appoint a divorce lawyer. But those require responsibility and don't come with a secret thrill. There would be NO contact with OW and I would let DIL know that.

If you have grandchildren then you do need to let your DIL know how much she means to you. You can love each of them dearly, allow them both to vent without taking it on board, whilst not pretending that it is all fine.

pissedonatrain Sun 05-May-19 15:46:59

They had already passed when we split.

My DD is going through a divorce and I support her. My former SIL is a vile abusive addict and no way I would do anything for him.

Auntpetunia2015 Sun 05-May-19 15:47:50

Never heard from my pil or any of his side of the family apart from 1 nice cousin he had, from the minute they were told we were separating. The IL rang the house once about a week after ex moved out to speak to the dc and I answered the phone ..they hung up (caller id gave them away) ! They rang again about 20 mins later and I got one of the dc to answer and they asked for both kids mobile numbers so they could contact them direct ! They never have in 4 years. I miss FIL he’s a good guy don’t miss MIL she’s a prissy judgemental boot !

DisplayPurposesOnly Sun 05-May-19 16:01:40

My paternal GPs stayed on good terms with my mum after my parents split up (after 15 years of marriage), as did my aunts and uncles. We lived a long way apart so didn't necessarily see them that often, but they invited my mum to significant family events (ruby anniversary etc), along side my dad and his 3rd wife.

It's been 30 years so my paternal GPs are now dead, but my mum is still on good terms with the aunts and uncles - they come to stay, they came to her second wedding, etc.

It possibly helped that my dad was the one who left (for another woman) (who no-one liked grin - not even my dad as they got divorced pretty sharpish).

florentina1 Sun 05-May-19 16:08:09

I think where one party clearly is a fault it is a bit easier for the family to make choices, I am very aware of not favouring one of the parties over the other. In this instance they have had a lot of things to deal with in the last 5 years and though they have had counselling they feel they cannot carry on together.

BeanoBrown Sun 05-May-19 16:11:12

My exMIL appeared a few times to take ds out but was never willing to listen or talk, the visits quickly stopped, I wonder if exh or exFIL didn't like her coming, now they just send birthday and Christmas gifts.

I would've liked to have stayed friendly with them, exh cheated and while I'd never expect them to take sides I'd have liked them to have acknowledged the cheating or even just listened to my side of the story, I suspect exh told them a few lies. Mostly I wish they'd still been willing to support and show interest in their grandchild.

When the split first happened passions ran high and it was a turbulent time, I think parents & in-laws could help by acting calm, being impartial and generally giving support until everyone finds their new roles.
You sound like a good MIL to have.

ElizabethinherGermanGarden Sun 05-May-19 16:13:58

My MIL was lovely to me after my ex and I split. I was also lovely to her at that point. It's 5 years later now and I don't keep in touch as much as I should and I feel bad about it. She misses me and I do feel that I should support her more. The thing is, it makes me think about my ex and that makes me feel bad, so I don't get in touch much. We didn't have children so don't have that tie. Selfishly, I would ideally like to let go completely now and concentrate on my new partner and his family (and my own enormous bunch of relations). It is a sad thing and I think makes me not that good a person.

You sound lovely, OP, and I'm sure you are doing everything right, including being thoughtful about this. It might not come to this for you.

MashedSpud Sun 05-May-19 16:14:37

Never heard from any of them again. Even though my ex niece was very close to my dc and she practically lived with us every school holiday.

RoseMartha Sun 05-May-19 16:16:06

I think that is lovely OP. I would have appreciated support. My ex in-laws have severed all contact and said I am not part of their family anymore. I am divorcing my h for his unreasonable and abusive behaviour. I imagine they have been fed lies by h.
In the future I anticipate I might see them when dropping the dc off. And it will be a curt hello or goodbye.

Honeybee85 Sun 05-May-19 16:18:42

When me and my (abusive) ex broke up, I didnt speak to my ex MIL for months.

I guess for her it was hard too; she is a very nice and genuine person.

I would still send her a Christmas card every year and she always sent one back. Bumped into her a few months ago and we spent 2 hours chatting and drinking tea. I also invited her to come over to have a tea at my new appartment after the separation but she never replied to the invite.

WheelyCote Sun 05-May-19 16:19:18

Never in a million years did i think doting grandparents would turn their backs but they did. And im not talking about helping...even contact.

ravenmum Sun 05-May-19 16:20:44

The kids are too old and the Ils too far away for them to help me, but we've kept in touch - I even had FIL over one Xmas (without my ex, with the kids) as my ex-SIL was fed up of having to entertain him every year.
Just got a phone call from ex's 95-year-old grandma thanking me for a birthday present I sent her. I really appreciate them keeping in touch, and have continued to send cards/presents and meet up occasionally.

Robin2323 Sun 05-May-19 17:05:46

Ex fil told me it didn't agree with his son but that he would have ti come Down on his 'side ' which I thought was fair.
Dd saw lots of fil until he died at 64.
Sadly she is too young to remember him.
Play it by ear op you sound lovely 😊

LellyMcKelly Sun 05-May-19 17:22:10

Please keep in touch with her if you had a good relationship. My in-laws stay in touch with me and I even went to visit them with the kids (they live 200 miles away. We still buy gifts and they’ve said they’re so pleased we were able to continue the relationship. It’s great for the kids sake as well. I’m more likely to pick up the phone than their dad so they get to talk to the kids more because I facilitate it. It may take a while, and you have to adjust the relationship from parent-DIL to a more equal friendship, but it can definitely be done. Get in touch quickly and tell her. It will mean a lot.

eve34 Sun 05-May-19 18:32:16

It is such a difficult situation for you to be in.

When ex left I gave the in laws space. They are his parents. They were so involved in mine and the children's lives it was a grieving process that so much had to change. And I was losing them too bBecause ex left for ow.

Pil were disappointed that he met someone else and behaved badly towards me and the children. I recognised and acknowledge that he is there son. But I was happy for them to stay involved in the children's lives.

After nine months I took the children to visit as ex had gone nc with his family. And the children hadn't seen them in all that time. He felt they had take. sides as they remind in contact with me. They took 'sides' because he stopped paying child support and lots of low level poor parenting from ex. Also a family member was seriously ill and he didn't go and see/support them.

It is a mess. I'm glad I have had them in my life and support. But can see that has made it harder for ex to be involved in his family. But he also does not take account of his own actions and how he could of made it different.

I know if/when I meet someone else then it will change again. And that makes me sad. They are family to me.

pointythings Sun 05-May-19 18:43:52

My H and I parted ways after his parents died, but when our marriage broke down, his family didn't take sides and were there equally for both of us. They were lovely, supportive and caring. When he died, they were there for me and DDs. I have been incredibly lucky in my family-in-law.

Why2 Sun 05-May-19 19:00:47

I divorced my ex but not a single member of his family has got in touch - barring the ex partner of his brother, and she obviously views me as having transgressed.

I think it’s lovely if you can keep in touch flowers.

ComeOnGordon Sun 05-May-19 19:12:41

My MIL has been nicer since my ex left me for the OW than she was while we were together!! Her husband had also had an affair (apple doesn’t fall far from the tree) but they stayed together so she was sympathetic to my situation. She also knows I’m a much better parent than my ex (he’s got minimal interest in the dc) so most of the contact with them is through me. They came and looked after the kids for me when I had to go to a work thing recently. My FIL isn’t quite so friendly - maybe since he knows I know what a dick he was to my MIL but we’re polite with each other. I wasn’t expecting her to be this nice - we’ve had problems in the past but I’m really appreciating her support

Sakura7 Sun 05-May-19 19:26:34

I'm still in touch with my ex's mother, but she was like a mother to me over the years and especially after the split (my own mother is worthy of the stately homes thread on here). She even offered for me to stay with her as I didn't know where I was going to go. But in this case her son had been a total shit to me and she recognised that.

The split was over four years ago now and I see her about once every 6 weeks, it was more frequent a few years ago but I've since moved house and started a new relationship. I'm also still in touch with her daughter (ex's sister).

If I were you I would text and tell her you're very sorry to hear the news, and offer to visit her or meet for a coffee. Tell her you don't expect her to talk about what happened if she doesn't want to, but that you care about her and want to make sure she's ok.

herecomestherainagain2 Sun 05-May-19 19:29:50

My MIL rang me and said she didn't want anything to change between us. I had been the one who ended it and tbf I think she understood why I had.

She's doesn't seem to bear me any ill will.

BobbinThreadbare123 Sun 05-May-19 19:34:26

My exMIL and some of her relatives were lovely and helpful to me. They were quite disgusted with XH as well. ExFIL not a jot, but meh. I've gently let the relationship slide, and so has she, but I think we know if either of us need each other, we'd be there. I still 'like' her photos on FB etc. Its been quite a few years now anyway, and there were no kids.

Nanamilly Sun 05-May-19 20:03:07

I think hell would freeze over before Id do anything to make my sons and daughters in law feel awful if their marriages to my children ended. They're wonderful people and having them in our family has only enhanced our family. I'd be very upset if any of the marriages broke down.

They're the parents of my grandchildren and they make a fabulous job of them.

Im glad we're family.

Cottonwoolmouth Sun 05-May-19 20:11:52

Yes they did. I was even maid of honour at her wedding grin

She did a fantastic job of staying out of our break up and we actually became good friends. She was a strength of support for dd and I and even decorated my new house. If I needed anything I knew I could count on her to help me with it.

It wasn’t a ‘mil’ relationship, we grew a friendship that was between us after I split from her son. I’d focus on doing that florentina

My ex partners grandmother was an old crow about it grin

mysurveysays Sun 05-May-19 21:00:00

Both my parents in law were very supportive when my exh left me and our three children. They took us on holiday, checked up on me often and were a massive source of support. I have my own parents who I am very close to but they were like second parents to me and could never thank them enough. My mil died recently and I was heart broken. Because we were so close, I did a reading at her funeral and even travelled in the funeral car with exh and fil. It did help that my exh was very supportive of our relationship from the start and even encouraged it. I don't think you should have to give up your relationship with your Dil, you can support both.

BlessYourCottonSocks Sun 05-May-19 21:05:49

My MIL was fantastic. Her son (my ex) was a complete dick; failed to pay maintenance, saw the children regularly but was awkward about helping out - even though he'd left me.

MIL on the other hand babysat 3 nights a week so I could work in a bar to help support us. Also had them 2 days a week when I was at college. She is now well into her 90s with dementia and I still visit her in her home, which is more than her arsehole of a son does. She never took sides - but she was always there for her grandchildren and I am immensely grateful to her. I needed her and she and I loved each other a lot. That didn't stop when I got divorced.

SkinnyPete Sun 05-May-19 21:24:21

My exPIL cut me off and haven't communicated in any shape or form. Would have been nice if they had, especially for my DD, as my XW doesn't exactly get on with them brilliantly either.

I'd have been very amenable to seeing them with DD, as they only get to see her 2-3 times a year at best anyway, as XW does limited contact with them.

If you have the opportunity to stay friends and in contact, you won't regret it. The alternative is very sad.

florentina1 Sun 05-May-19 21:31:02

@Sakura7 thank you so much. It is the words I am finding hard. My son said she is away from home at present so I was going to phone her when she returns. Your words are very helpful. She has been through so much and I know my son has tried to be there for her.i desperately hope that time away from each other will give them some breathing space.

Sakura7 Sun 05-May-19 22:51:41

@florentina1 Of course, it is a difficult situation and probably not one you expected to be in. All you can do is let her know you're there for her. It might be no harm to text her saying you're thinking of her and you hope you can see her when she returns. It will probably give her a bit of a boost to hear from you, because as you've seen on this thread it doesn't always happen.

Look after yourself too flowers

youarenotkiddingme Sun 05-May-19 23:01:11

I think it's great you want to stay neutral and supportive.

My ex hadn't even told his mother we'd split and he moved out.
I was working and she cane into my work (few days after we split) discussing upcoming trip to her IL with us and ds. I replied that under circumstances I didn't think me, ex and ds going as family unit was appropriate but if course is not stop ds from going. Then I had to break the news to her that her ds had moved out. I was good enough not to mention the ONS he'd had that led to it.

She was then very unsupportive and refused to help me out with ds if I ever asked (I didn't after the first 2 times caused issue) and had a right go at me when I had ds in hospital with suspected meningitis and had tried to call his dad for 3 hours and eventually called her to ask if she had another way to contact him. I was in bits (ds was only a year old) and was even worse after she heard what I said and then yelled at me that he was out with friends but would be at hers when he finished and no she wouldn't be waiting up to tell him and he would not be coming to hospital as she was taking him flat hunting in the morning.

I may have casually asked if she wanted me to text them and let them know if ds survived the night so they knew whether to hunt for a 1 or 2 bed. (Not my finest moment blush).

Please don't be that person. Don't take sides - I never expected my XMil too which is why I didn't tell her why we split. But please don't defend your son and protect him at the expense of DIL and grandchild.

user1486131602 Sun 05-May-19 23:21:26

No! My Mil is one of the reasons I'm divorcing!
I don't know if there's any kids involved, but if there is make sure you keep up contact with them.
I would of loved someone to lean on, but that's not always possible. If you can call your DIL and ask her how she would like things to be?
I wish you well x

blueangel1 Sun 05-May-19 23:27:08

Nope. Never heard a word from them since the day exh left. Not even a goodbye.

Mummaofmytribe Sun 05-May-19 23:37:42

I message daily with my ex DIL. We sadly can't see each other much as she moved to another country (taking GC without his father knowledge so there's a court case happening)
I know she did wrong but also understand her reasons. I'm in a tough position as my first loyalty is to my son but I would never cut my DIL and GC out. She sends me a photo or video of GC pretty much every day and I'm grateful.
I will always keep in contact with her unless she doesn't want me to which I hope doesn't happen

NC4Now Sun 05-May-19 23:41:31

I see my ex Mil about once a month. Whether that will carry on when he meets someone new, I don’t know, but for now it’s nice. We just have a brew and a catch up.
She lent XH (her son) money to buy me out of the house too.
I love my Mil 😊

hellodarkness Mon 06-May-19 06:54:01

My ex pil have stayed in regular contact and got it about right I think.

When xh and I split they contacted me and said that they didn't want our relationship to change and would always be there for me.

They told xh that he was their son, and their priority, but that they loved me too and were not about to abandon me.

Several years have passed now but we text/phone about fortnightly and see each other every 4-6 weeks, usually just for coffee or lunch. We never talk about xh or ow, but usually about dc or work, small talk really.

Xh had no choice but to accept it and seems fine with it now. When he picks up dc we will chat about his parents.

I am not invited to family gatherings, obviously, but I am still invited to big events - a wedding and a christening over the past year.

I think it has been good for dc to see us all getting along, and good for pil's relationship with dc.

I appreciate all of it because my family live abroad so I have no one here really.

Napssavelives Mon 06-May-19 07:04:29

@hellodarkness that’s nice, that’s what I’d like. Instead of pretending that their son hasn’t done this and I don’t exist.

Rock3pillo Mon 06-May-19 07:05:09

Mine completely cut me off and had the OW and STBXH living with them within a month of him leaving hmmgrin

DeadWife Mon 06-May-19 07:23:25

Dropped like a hot brick.

Ex-h's family are like the mafia, you're either in or you're out.

I did grow close to a lot of them so it's a shame; If I'd have known years ago I wouldn't have opened up to them so much about personal stuff but I was naive.

There was a massive clue that I didn't pay attention to that should have raised red flags: any family member or acquaintance that wasn't actually in the room was massively gossiped about, joked about, insulted etc all the time - I should have realised but was young and daft.

My advice would be don't assume your in-laws are genuinely nice to you for any reason other than you're with their relative and possibly giving birth to more of them .

DeadWife Mon 06-May-19 07:28:24

Sorry went off on a tangent there. You sound nothing like my ex's family OP, keeping in contact with your DIL alone will mean so much especially as there is affection there already between you.

Alsonification Mon 06-May-19 07:31:15

I split with my ex when I was seven months pregnant with her second child. X had an affair. My in-laws were amazing to me. And they continue to be almost 17 years later. They would take the kids for me every Friday and then when I finished work I would have dinner with them before I took the kids home. Although they don’t mind the kids anymore we still continue to see them every second Friday for dinner either in my house or theirs.

They have helped me out over the years when I have been stuck.

I consider my brother-in-law as one of my brothers. He is an excellent uncle to my children.

My ex went on to marry the other woman and they have two more children. But my in-laws have never forgotten about me or my children.

Shutuptodd Mon 06-May-19 07:32:17

My ex mil helps with the children alot. She is my go too if they are off sick. We also go out shopping now and again. We arent exactly best friends and she does drive me nuts sometimes but i dont know what i would do without her.

Robin2323 Mon 06-May-19 07:58:12

Some really inspirational stories out there.
Well done mil's.

madamedeluxe Mon 06-May-19 08:02:09

Yes interesting thread. It’s something that’s not really talked about but surprising and sad how many ex-in-laws disappeared.

bigchris Mon 06-May-19 08:06:16

@youarenotkiddingme that is awful and I don't blame you at all for what you said! Did he ever ask after ds and being in hospital or did she just never tell him?

8FencingWire Mon 06-May-19 08:16:57

Mine dropped me like a hot brick. Not a single word.
You would have thought I was an awful DIL, but I really really wasn’t. I was loyal and helpful to them, I didn’t cheat on their precious son or anything like that. The one thing I was was too good for them.
I don’t miss them. My DD sees them very occasionally, when she’s at her dad’s.
The thing is, they all know just how awful my exH is. And I agree with them, their loyalities should rightly lay with my exH. But I am the mother of his only child. Their only granddaughter. Wouldn’t hurt to keep it civil.

OP, you could still see them. Take the GC out, she won’t say no. Not because she might need help with childcare, but for the sake of your relationship with the GC.

aprilshowers12 Mon 06-May-19 08:34:52

Ex had OW and PIL were disgusted with his behaviour. They remained really supportive both emotionally ( not practically as lived too far away) and financially once they realised I was struggling once I took the mortgage in my sole name and bought ex out. I never asked for help but they were comfortably off and did what they could. Ex MIL has now died and ex FIL will die in the near future, I don't have contact anymore since Exdh remarried

funmummy48 Mon 06-May-19 08:42:23

My parents in law stayed close to me after my divorce and were always very supportive. They even came to my wedding when I remarried and my husband comes with me when I visit them. We're all good friends and they've been an extranet of grandparents to the children I had with my second husband. The first few weeks after my divorce were a little strained but we all worked through it and need up with a lovely relationship.

funmummy48 Mon 06-May-19 08:43:32

Ended up with a lovely relationship that should say 😉

florentina1 Mon 06-May-19 08:45:53

I am overwhelmed by your kindness and I never expected so many replies and so many heartbreaking stories. I don’t subscribe to the ‘he is my son and that is where my loyalty must be.’ I am desperately sorry for both of them and I know that they have tried to keep things together. Despite what some posters insist, there is no infidelity on either side.

Sometimes though couples are better apart. I know that neither of them will use me a sounding board as that is not their way. My plan is to text her today, say what has been recommended on here and ask her if it is ok for me to phone her .

Sakura7 Mon 06-May-19 09:09:34

That sounds like a good plan and I'm sure she'll appreciate it.

ravenmum Mon 06-May-19 09:56:13

In my case, my exh did have an affair, and I let my ILs know quite how pissed off I was about it, too! However, it's not their fault, and of course they love my ex. And my ex is an adult, his family are not going to tell him off in some way. I wouldn't expect that. My FIL always asks if I am doing OK, and if I am happy - he's clearly worried that his son hurt me, and it's very sweet. They were presumably also nice to the OW while she lasted, because they are nice people, not as a symbol of their approval.

My dad also kept in touch with my exh, and my stepmum was embarrassed when she mentioned that they had seen each other, as she was afraid it would seem disloyal to me. I told her that it showed what nice people they were. But I did appreciate her saying that she didn't want to appear disloyal, too!

MozzchopsThirty Mon 06-May-19 10:09:21

I get on better with my in laws post divorce

They help me and my ex out when they can

They're the best grandparents my dcs could ever wish for and I think it's important to keep that relationship positive and healthy

I can't bear the thought of anything ever happening to them

I hope you continue to have a good relationship with your DIL it sounds like you will smile

ElsieMc Mon 06-May-19 10:09:28

My dd1 split with her dh at Christmas. We have always got on okay and he was good with his step ds's. He visits us regularly and we have helped him out as has my dd2.

But my problems is family occasions. He has been to them since the split but my dd is getting upset about his attendance although the boys want him there. I don't want to hurt him, but it is putting me in a difficult position and I have an occasion coming up soon.

Do try to remember it is a difficult situation for pil's as well. We will always be fond of him and see him but things can be difficult and sensitive. I can also see my dd's faults and certainly don't think her behaviour has been perfect.

Dickensnovel Mon 06-May-19 14:44:44

My MIL was a huge help to me. She knew her son had a bad temper, and pushed him to be fair in our settlement, even lending him money until our home could be sold so that i could move on. Then she kept in contact up until her death many years later. She said to me that I was the mother of her two grandsons and was part of her family. End of. I remember her fondly.

youarenotkiddingme Mon 06-May-19 16:37:19

Big she obviously told him at some point. No idea when though! And we were lucky that ds 'just' had bronchitis and had seizured due to temp and projectile vomiting the calpol I'd given him.
I didn't text to tell them he was fine though. I honestly can't remember what happened the following day (or the few after that!) as I was shattered, caring for ds and I think still in shock that house hunting came above his own child.

The shock soon turned to acceptance and he hasn't seen ds since he was 2.5 years old. And none of his family responded to the FB messenger page I'd been keeping them all updated on (news, photos etc) since the day I posted ds had been diagnosed with autism. Just complete radio silence.

He's fab though so their loss grin

sourdoh Tue 07-May-19 00:47:15

Dropped like a hot potato by all of them. ExDH invited me to his dad's funeral. I went to support our kids, be there for them as ex was utterly distracted. Loads of his family members & friends ignored me, which was fair enough under the circumstances.

My parents maintain some contact with my ex. I found it really upsetting to begin with, as I believed they were undermining my experience of his abusive behaviour. Not for a second was I perfect, but he was and still is a very difficult man.

I understand better now and have found this thread helpful in rationalizing their decisions.

I'm still a bit torn though because I think loyally is with family first, which, ironically, is how his family behaved and it hurt me a lot.

It's great you want to reassure her. Keep the lines of communication open flowers

hmga90 Tue 07-May-19 04:22:00

I’ve actually experienced it from both sides.

When my brother and SIL broke up, everyone was on my brothers side not realising SIL was in a foreign country with 2 D.C. to look after 5 nights a week (brother has them on weekends). Has caused a lot of friction but I don’t give a fuck because I’m not a arsehole. SIL broke up with him because she realised they weren’t compatible and it wasn’t healthy for her DC. She did the best thing possible in my eyes.

Never been married but me and my first boyfriends mum are close- me and my mum have never had a good relationship and she always recognised that and it was her who reached out to me when we split to say she was still there for me when necessary. We speak every couple of day and will meet up once a month or so for a drink.

RosalitaStoneDesire Tue 07-May-19 19:31:44

It's been two years since I split from my ex H. I haven't heard a thing from his parents. It speaks volumes about how they view me.

SandyY2K Tue 07-May-19 19:45:38

I've not been in this position, but my DB split from his wife. I tried to keep in touch and would continue arranging for meet ups with the DC.

It was hard, because she was a bit distant. My DB instigated the split and she tried to make out she was now on the breadline. Until I said if my DB was not adequately providing for the DC, I would have a word. She quickly backtracked on that.

I would also say that it's an added factor with DC involved. We always offered DM included, but it was obvious she wanted to distance herself from our family.

Its over 10 years and I still text her now and again...but maintaining the same relationship is difficult.

Also consider if your DS would want you being so close to her.

Shitonthebloodything Tue 07-May-19 19:49:25

My ex mil and I always got on great and when we split I really needed her help in talking some sense into him after he went back on financial agreements and left me up shit creek and without a car or ability to work. She refused and a few weeks later encouraged him to see the kids less as "he worked and needed his rest" (he had a desk job!).

It was his choice to leave, he'd cheated, hidden money, led a single life our whole marriage and it was the only thing I'd ever asked of her.
I've never really forgiven her.

PanamaPattie Tue 07-May-19 19:59:58

When my "D"B left my SIL for the OW, my parents disowned him and totally supported SIL and their GC. I consider SIL one of my best friends and years later she is still considered part of the family. My DM remained in contact with her and she was invited to all the family weddings, birthdays etc. My "D"B wasn't invited to anything. My parents couldn't forgive his infidelity and refused to have the OW in their home.

DarklyDreamingDexter Tue 07-May-19 20:11:22

My mum and I get on great with my exSIL, even though she has since remarried. The best example I know is my friend, who has stayed really close to her exMIL and even the extended family like her exH's uncles, aunts and nephews. It is possible!

SandyY2K Wed 08-May-19 09:07:02


It's been two years since I split from my ex H. I haven't heard a thing from his parents. It speaks volumes about how they view me.

Have your parents contacted him at all?

It seems the expectation is on the husband's parent's in these situations from what I see on MN.

downcasteyes Wed 08-May-19 09:10:51

I've never been under any illusions that my in laws would remain in touch with me if DH and I split. I am very much someone they think is beneath them in class terms, and I think they would be genuinely relieved not to see me again. Then again, my own parents were very much not there when my relationship with my exP broke up.

ravenmum Wed 08-May-19 09:17:07

My exh's lovely uncle split up with his wife a few years back - she had an affair. Everyone was very supportive but there was no open animosity towards her. Thank goodness, as they got back together again a year later. Still pretty awkward at family get-togethers as it was - trying to make the conversation as warm as it was previously but with images of what she had done in your mind. Would have been much worse if there had been any unfriendliness.

Teaandtoastie Wed 08-May-19 09:26:20

At first they did, after exH had an affair and I threw him out, but once they’d heard his side of the story they quickly took his side. Now we are civil to each other but that’s about it. I was hurt the first Christmas when I made the effort to get cards/presents for them from the DC and I didn’t even get a card. These days I leave it up to exH (so no doubt they get nothing!)

RosalitaStoneDesire Thu 09-May-19 17:48:45


Yes they have. We live in a small area so they felt it would be petty not to and didn't want to make things awkward. Nothing over the top, just initial messages of support and AFAIK they sent him Christmas cards/messages on birthday.

It was arguably more my decision to split (reasonably amicably though) which maybe has influenced ex-PIL's decision not to contact me. I daresay he hasn't told them about why we split (amicable but nonetheless still his doing), so maybe I shouldn't be surprised they haven't contacted me, as in their view he's done nothing wrong.

I certainly don't expect regular contact but I think it's a bit off to say absolutely nothing, especially when there was no acrimony, no affair, nothing like that. We kept it very much to ourselves and I guess I'm a bit confused that it's like I never existed.

Aroundtheworldandback Thu 09-May-19 22:52:51

My in-laws helped me after their son had an affair and we split but didn’t want their son to find out they were helping me. I guess they wanted a clear conscious and to keep their son happy...

Shodan Fri 10-May-19 00:45:23

I see my PIL once a week when I drop ds2 off for his days with his dad. If time allows I'll sit down, have a cuppa and a gossip, and I have every other Christmas lunch with them.

Our relationship is cordial, even though I'm the one that ended my marriage. Soon after XH moved out my PILs were at my house (can't remember why) and MIL gave me a hug and said it was sad, but sometimes these things happen. I was very touched, but have to admit it felt awkward as I'd been fully prepared to have them cut me off completely.

I could be wrong, but I've always had the slight feeling that they both fully understand why I couldn't be with their DS any more. They are, of course, totally supportive of him, but I have no doubt in my mind that if I needed their help they would give it if they could.

It does help I think that XH and I have a tolerably amicable relationship now.

Chocmallows Fri 10-May-19 00:50:53

My exMIL was awful, told me that DC and I would lose our home after my exH had cheated on me.

Even basic courtesy - checking DC were ok and offering to help with school runs when I worked would have been appreciated.

florentina1 Fri 10-May-19 08:11:24

I don’t know if anyone wants an up-date. We exchanged texts and she was very kind and grateful. She said she would like us to meet up.

DeadWife Fri 10-May-19 08:13:34

That's lovely OP. Wish my ex-mil was like you.

BertieBotts Fri 10-May-19 08:18:38

I had to make some distance initially as they were understandably upset for their son. But over time I did keep in touch as I felt it was beneficial to DS to have contact/links with his grandparents. They now see him more than his father does and when we lived nearby they even did some childcare for me which was appreciated as my budget was tight as a lone parent.

ravenmum Fri 10-May-19 10:58:05

Good to hear, florentina smile

notapizzaeater Fri 10-May-19 11:07:30

I'm pleased about that. I felt bereaved when me and my first DH split up from his family.

Nanamilly Fri 10-May-19 22:03:20

That’s great to hear Flora.

Slimerecipehell Sat 11-May-19 00:00:14

I initially confided in my now exmil about the exh affair and they were brilliant about it all. At one point she actually said ‘you were always too good for him!’
Over the next couple of years I saw them less and I think the loyalty kicks in as at the end of the day he is their flesh and blood.
Fast forward a good few years both ex pil provide childcare for me and we have a lovely relationship which ultimately is for the benefit and well being of my children.

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