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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.

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

Nope.
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.

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