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.
How to stop MIL bringing food over?(117 Posts)
When my MIL comes to visit she brings copious amounts of food. Think 3 packets of biscuits, a cake, a tub of bite size treats, a bar of chocolate. These are just 2 hourly visits. She lives about 5 miles away so not overly special visits or anything. She knows I wouldn’t give these to DC so they’re for me. DH doesn’t eat them as he battled obesity as a child. My problem is that I really need to lose weight. Had dc2 10 months ago and I’m still fat. Life is really hard atm and I comfort eat. Which is why I never buy any ‘bad’ food in my online shop. I hate the fact that she brings all this crap into my house. I wish I had the willpower to leave it but nobody else eats it so it is sitting there and then I have a shit time over something and eat it.
Both me and DH have asked her not to do it and she doesn’t for a while (I told her that dc love fruit so she just bought fruit) but then reverts back.
Is there anyway I can stop this permanently? I could just take it to a food bank drop off I suppose.
Yes collect it for the food bank or local charity. You could also ask her if she wants to bring over fruit or a cooked meal instead
I would either hand it back to her as she is leaving, or take it to the food bank when she's gone.
Oh I have this same issue.... we end up binning it. Such a waste!!
Sounds like she wants to be nice. Ask her to bring round a cooked meal instead. If she doesn't stop, take stuff immediately to food bank. But don't have an argument over something like this. Many people (sadly) show love through food. Sounds like she might be one of them.
You could try asking again but I doubt she’ll stop - from what you’ve said and your DH’s childhood obesity she sounds like a feeder. I’d either bin the stuff once she’s left or, repeat that you don’t want the stuff and the next time she brings them hand them back to her along with her coat when she’s leaving with a ‘Thanks for the thought but these won’t get eaten here.’
"Oooh, gosh thanks but I'm working on losing weight so I'm avoiding all that stuff" and hand it back. Or, yes, just take it to a food bank if she really can't be deterred.
I'm exactly the same with stuff like this - if it's in the house I will eat it.
Tell husband to dump it straight in his bag and take it to work with him for co workers or straight to a food bank or to the kids school for the staff room.
Once you get into the habit of disposal, you won't think twice of it
Say (and keep saying) "It's kind of you to bring this but you know we don't eat them" And hand them back.
My mil is similar.
When she visits every few weeks she brings several large shopping bags full of crisps, biscuits, chocolate plus useful things such as cheese and cleaning stuff.
We have asked her not to but she always does.
I think it is a misguided way of showing her love. She doesn't help with the kids in a practical way like my parents do due to disability. I think bringing stuff must make her feel useful.
I am usually dieting too and if I tell her that, she repeatedly asks how 'our diet' is going in front of the children which I don't like.
I just give lots of the stuff to my brother and the rest to the food bank.
It is hard to resist though and I often find myself raiding it.
Thanks. I did ask her to bring fruit and for a while she just bought fruit but now it is fruit plus crap. The annoying thing is that we are really careful with money and budgeting so the sheer waste of it is upsetting.
I don’t know what I can say that would get through to her. I have said, in the past, that I need to lose weight and I have no self control. And she stops briefly.
I feel like it’s a control thing in a way - she knows I’m trying to lose weight but still brings this stuff. I feel like she’s happier if I’m fat. I ran a half marathon a few years ago and I remember she was so annoyed when i wouldn’t eat the biscuits / cakes at hers.
Yes, just refuse to take them and tell her no. If she still tries to hand it to you... "OK! The local food bank will love this"
Go through that with her that every time. If she asks you why tell her that she knows full well you don't eat it and you won't see it go to waste.
Op, the answer to this is easy. Just hand it back as she goes out and say sorry I'm dieting. Or destroy it and bin it as soon as she leaves ie cover it in bleach or something.
The fact you do neither would indicate maybe deep down you want the food?
Ah thanks guys. Lots more replies while I was typing last post.
Giving to DH for co workers is a good plan as it’s out the door quickly.
Also like @EdgarAllenSloe response. I think that is something I could say. Need to work on assertiveness.
* DH doesn’t eat them as he battled obesity as a child.*
Do you think these could be linked? I have a similar situation- MIL barely eats anything and is very slim but likes to show her affection by giving food to people. DH was an overweight child (but she will not hear of it, even when he points out how he looks on photos- it's always just the way the clothes look, or he's due a growth spurt etc). She brings us 'treats' every time she visits, which is very regularly and seems to interpret the lack of any such food in our cupboards as a reason that we need some (rather than us not wanting it). We have managed to stop her giving sweets etc directly to the DC but this ends up meaning a cupboard full of them that I end up eating.
We had some brief success when I explained I was trying to lose weight and when we suggested that perhaps a weekly magazine/book for the DC might be better. But she does revert to sweet 'treats' quite quickly so we need to have the same sort of conversation every few months. Last time we had the conversation we suggested toiletries or DVDs instead of sweets so we ended up with piles of cheap films and soap! Could you perhaps suggest something she could bring instead?
I definitely don’t want it. I don’t feel assertive enough to hand it back as it seems so ungrateful but I feel this would stop it.
I did throw a packet of biscuits in the bin this morning. I’d eaten 3 (had less than 4 hours sleep and at end of my tether today). Then I was so upset I chucked them in the bin. But it is such a fucking waste.
The food bank is the best way to make use.
@lovelygreenjumper we have the same MIL!! Yeah I did suggest fruit and we get that too but like your mil she has started bringing the crap again.
To those who’ve suggested it, yes she definitely is a feeder. Poor DH really struggled as a child. She would never acknowledge any of it though.
I’ve obviously said to her there is no need to bring anything at all.
if she won't stop then I would keep it in a carrier bag out of sight until I could put in a food bank box at a shop.
re food bank.
Call your local one first as they may not deal with some of the food which has a short sell by date e.g. the bite size treats.
Don't just put them in one of the collection tubs at a supermarket.
When I helped with the food bank it was actually at the Resource Centre ie the point of collection by clients, NOT the warehouse and thus we were able to have a box of fresh food which clients could take what they wanted from.
Just keep refusing it when she gives it to you, or give it back to her when she is leaving.
The trouble with sending it to work or to the food bank is that it becomes your problem to dispose of it.
MIL will not change her behaviour until she is forced to confront her own actions, eg she realises that she is wasting money or it irritates her having to dispose of the rejected items.
You don't need to be rude to her, you just need to be firm and stick to your own script.
Can you take them into work? Free food always goes down well in our staff room!
I’m not working atm but yes my old staffroom would’ve been grateful too!
My MIL also used to do this and brought toilet rolls and kitchen rolls as well! An elderly lady carrying it all on the bus and telling all and sundry who they were for and letting neighbours help her carry them. It embarassed me, plus like you I didn't want DC to eat that much sweet stuff.
I asked her to buy a picture book or magazine for the DC instead and then asked her to get them money boxes to save and so asked her to bring them a coin to put in it. Discussing what they were going to do with their money also was a nice chat to have. I bigged uo how they enjoyed getting granny pocket money. It worked a lot better. She still brought toilet rolls though.
I'd stop worrying about offending her. She's choosing to ignore your wishes and disrespect your choices.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Get started »
Please login first.