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PIL and the fall out from Christmas

(181 Posts)
ClareVH Mon 13-Jan-20 21:01:30

DH and I have been married for 15 years and have 2 DC. His family have never liked me, in spite of me being a nice, normal person and trying very hard to include them in our lives, make them feel welcome in our home, etc. I don’t know why they don’t like me, DH has asked them, but they deny it. We barely see them in spite of moving to be closer to them.

One irritating thing that MIL does is, if I ask her a question, she’ll give her answer to DH, not me. I don’t know why she sidelines me like this, but I find it quite hurtful. If I answer his phone, she’ll say, “I want to speak to my son.” Just refuses to speak to me.

It came to a head over Christmas. I texted MIL early in December to suggest that we should get together for Christmas and put forward an idea. She said she’d think about it and get back to me, but never did and we heard nothing from them. They go away a lot and so DH and I assumed they had decided to go away for Christmas. DH was on leave from Christmas Eve. Due to the nature of his job, he had his phone switched off over Christmas and New Year whilst he was on leave. However, my phone was on the whole time.

We expected that PIL would at least call to speak to the DC over Christmas. But we heard nothing. They live very close to us, so could easily have popped in if they were around, after first calling to check that we were in.

After Christmas, we discovered that they had hosted a nice family Christmas with SIL but had not invited us. I sent a text to MIL basically saying how hurt I was that they didn’t invite us and now all hell has broken loose. MIL lied and said she HAD invited us, via DH, but he’d declined. I remember this phone call as MIL was on speakerphone and she most certainly did not invite us. It’s weird, as in spite of her faults, I have never known MIL to lie before.

She then said that they had popped round but we were out. And now the presents are all sitting “sadly under the tree”. It’s like she’s blaming us for being out when they came round, but had she called me before leaving home, we could have arranged a time that we were in.

She also said that she had called many times over Christmas but that we had ignored her calls. She called on DH's phone, which was switched off as he was on leave (she knew this). She didn't then call on my phone, which obviously I would have answered.

She has now told the whole family that they didn’t get to see their GC over Christmas and apparently it’s my fault! The whole family have now turned against me, saying how hurt she is that she didn’t get to see her GC at Christmas and still hasn’t been able to give the DC their presents.

We had a difficult year and I really just wanted a nice big family Christmas. I am feeling really fragile at the moment. I was very ill earlier in the year and now I think I’m suffering from depression, maybe as a side effect of the medication I was on. I cry a lot and struggle to cope. I am trying to work through it and DH is great. No-one else knows as I am very good at pretending everything is OK. The situation with PIL really upsets me. I just wish I knew what the solution was.

Can anybody help me please?

restingbitchface30 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:04:26

Bloody hell they sound like nightmares! No real advice here but try and keep your head up chuck!

Hepzibar Mon 13-Jan-20 21:05:17

Why would you want a 'nice family Christmas ' with people who don't like you?

category12 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:07:17

I think you have to stop trying with them - they're not interested and have scapegoated you.

Why did you move closer to them? Do you have family yourself? If so, would you be better moving closer to them?

Go to your GP about your potential depression and look into some counselling to help you cope with this nasty turn of events. they're really not worth your tears. I hope things look brighter to you soon. flowers

AnotherEmma Mon 13-Jan-20 21:08:02

Why on earth did you move to be closer to these people?

Why do you try to please and spend time with people who are so obviously rude to you?

You are willingly putting yourself in the position of getting hurt.

I am truly sorry that you are struggling with your mental health and that your in-laws are not what you would like them to be.

But you need to stop banging your head against a brick wall and accept the situation for what it is.

They are not worth it!

Please focus on yourself and your own well being. Get counselling if you can.

I also strongly recommend the books "Toxic In-laws" for you and "Toxic Parents" for your DH. Both by Susan Forward.

(I have big in-law problems myself, btw. Caused a huge amount of stress and heartache for a long time. Until we accepted it for what it was and stopped hoping they would magically become reasonable people. It's sad but we have made our peace.)

DrWAnker Mon 13-Jan-20 21:08:44

In the nicest possible way, what do you want to happen?
You cannot re write the past, do you want to have a relationship with these people? Does your DH? On what terms would you have people who blatantly lie and belittle you in your life?
I'm not trying to be horrible, they sound like some of my relations who I'm seriously evaluating how to deal with!
Just because people are family doesn't mean you need to maintain a relationship if there are major reasons you don't get along.

Sparkletastic Mon 13-Jan-20 21:09:00

Why didn't DH call them or arrange to see them? Why are you making this your problem to solve?

bigchris Mon 13-Jan-20 21:11:08

I do find it odd your dh switched his phone off the whole time

Didn't he ring his paremts to say happy Christmas

Why was the onus all on them?

Oldbutstillgotit Mon 13-Jan-20 21:11:34

Why would you want to spend any time with such nasty people ?

SunsetYorks Mon 13-Jan-20 21:12:27

I don’t really understand why your DH didn’t call them before turning his phone off if you really wanted to see them & they hadn’t responded to you?

Drum2018 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:17:28

Why isn't Dh dealing with the bitch? If I were you I would go NC and let her sod off. So what if she is whinging to other people. What other people think of you is none of your concern - I heard that a few years ago and once you accept it, it's very liberating. If Dh wants to continue some fucked up relationship with her then let him off. You don't have to see or speak to her again if you choose not to.

Stann86 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:19:09

Screenshot your phone messages you sent and her replies and send to the family on a group whatsapp or something just saying you don't want arguments but want to set the record straight. You don't need such toxic people in your life. Glad to hear you've a supportive DH though! Rely on your support network of people who you trust.

stevenage42 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:19:38

This is your husband's fault. He should have made contact with them over Christmas

Interestedwoman Mon 13-Jan-20 21:20:24

@Hepzibar I understand wanting people to like you.

@ClareVH Rejection is one of the most horrible feelings- experiencing it from people you so want to approve of you must be awful. If it's on top of other stressful life events, I can completely understand why you would be depressed. Please see your GP, and look into therapy to cope with these people. What does your DH say? Does he stand up for you to them? xx

Aminuts23 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:22:48

Your DH should be dealing with this! He’s letting them treat you appallingly. Your problem lies there I’m afraid. He needs to stop allowing you to be scapegoated and grow a pair and deal with his parents. I’m surprised you’d want to spend any time with them. I do find it odd that neither of you made contact with them however. Seems a bit odd

Iloveacurry Mon 13-Jan-20 21:25:32

Your DH needs to set the record straight with the rest of the family.

Newmumma83 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:25:38

I doubt it’s about you, they just sound rude! Even if you don’t like someone you don’t ignore people , lie about offers you never gave and start turning a family against you.

They are simply bonkers ... bat shit crazy infact ... and I would give up
Worrying about their opinions or desires you can please or reason with crazy

Please go to the doctors and get on the wait list for some counselling and maybe medical help .. there is not shame in seeking a little shelter from the emotional
Storm you are currently in.

EKGEMS Mon 13-Jan-20 21:26:09

I'm thinking of nicer landmarks you could have moved to be closer than those dysfunctional assholes: a nuclear plant leaking plutonium, an illegal daycare, a drug house, a cockfighting ring, a sleazy massage parlor! Seriously you just need to write your relationship with them off and why the fuck has your husband not spoken up to correct the disrespectful way your MIL from hell has treated you?

ClareVH Mon 13-Jan-20 21:27:09

We assumed that they were travelling. They go away a lot, probably about 8 times a year. They don't like it if we call them when they're travelling, because it costs them money. They also have family that they visit at the other side of the world, so there are time zones to consider as well.

DH does stand up for me, although it took him a few years to be able to do that.

Nomorelaundry Mon 13-Jan-20 21:28:40

Why is your DH tolerating this abuse towards you?

Pumpkinpie1 Mon 13-Jan-20 21:30:01

Sadly I do t hi k you will ever have the close loving relationship with your husbands side of the family you yearn for
Do you have family on your Side?
I think it’s time to let your husband take responsibility with contacting his parents, turning his phone off when he hadn’t spoken to them was odd. He really does need to take the initiative and not leave you trying to fill in for his apathy.
I think your allowing yourself to be a scapegoat because you want to be part of his family. It’s time to take back some control.
You have children, a husband these are your priority .
Let your husband step up and deal with them, or is he happier not to?
Are you getting support for depression, I hope so, you need to look after yourself and start remember you are important

AnotherEmma Mon 13-Jan-20 21:30:17

He has obviously been conditioned by his parents not to challenge them.

To be fair the OP has been actively contacting them herself.

When DH's parents started being difficult I let him deal with them, it was the only way.

Would have all blown up much sooner if I'd tried to challenge them myself!

AnotherEmma Mon 13-Jan-20 21:31:53

Also, there is a reason that he is not proactive in contacting them. My DH was always like that and for a long time I struggled to understand it. When he finally started being more proactive and assertive I understood why he hadn't done it before! They hated it!

PanamaPattie Mon 13-Jan-20 21:33:40

You don't like them. They don't like you. Stop trying. Ignore them. Why would you want to spend any part of your life worrying about these liars? They make excuses after excuses. Cut them out of your lives. You can't play happy families unless everyone joins in.

TheReef Mon 13-Jan-20 21:35:18

She sounds batshit. Nothing you do will ever be right, you do know that don't you. She will always paint you as the bad guy even when you're not, so just ignore and if their extended family agree, then they aren't worth bothering about either.

Go NC with her, if she rings and you pick up, if she says 'i want to speak to my son' just hang up.

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