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Mil probs with DH and DD(39 Posts)
Hi, I am at the end of my tether and looking for advice. For background I have been married for 25 years and have DS18 and DD16. Throughout our marriage our relationship with Inlaws has been our biggest problem, mil in particular I think has some form of personality disorder. There have been many incidents over the years with her, we currently live 6 hours away from them, deliberately putting a distance between us 15years ago. Two years ago I was hospitalised as I became very unwell with depression and was suicidal. 6 months prior to that she had told my husband I was a wicked snake and he promptly told me. I was done after that never been called such a horrible name before. When I was ill this name really preyed on my mind and DH begged her to apologise as did fil allegedly. She didn't she sent one of those awful I'm sorry if you believe I said that.
Since then DH has remained in weekly cordial contact with fil but rarely and only recently spoken with mil. The kids spent time last year with Inlaws and have phone contact and normal grandparent contact.
The problem I have is that I think she has been so cruel to me kicking me when I'm down yet gets all the good bits with the gc. I am essentially bypassed as the problem one and their relationship happens. It is a recurrent argument as my DH cannot see why I see this as a problem and is outraged that I would even think of the kids not seeing them. I feel really let down by him and very much feel he doesn't have my back and is not protective. He gets very angry saying he did all he could and rarely speaks to his mum.
We are at an impasse I feel really strongly about this and would never let anyone treat him in such a way, it is a real fundamental problem in our marriage any advice would be very welcome thanks xx
At 16 and 18, your children are old enough to decide if they want to have contact with their grandparents. As for your husband, I'm sorry he's not more understanding, but if wants to have contact with his parents, that's his right, and you have the right to never speak to them again.
What do you want from this? Do you want him to completely cut her off?
What she did was horrible but it sounds like he isn’t pressurising you to see her and barely speaks to her himself. Now you are unhappy that she has the very limited contacted she has.
Sorry but it does sound like you will only be happy if she is miserable
Your H is unlikely to cut both parents off because he is likely to be in a FOG state re them too (fear, obligation and guilt). What he fails to see here is that his inertia re them continues to hurt him as well as you people as his family. He does not want to choose or make a decision, he probably wishes on some level that you could all get along so that he does not have to decide anything.
Your children can make up their own minds re these people. Do they want to continue seeing their grandparents in spite how you as their mother have been treated by them?.
Your dc are old enough to decide if they want to see them.
My ex mil is a bitch and I never force my dc to see her. They do so 2-3 times a year under duress but at 16 they can do what they like.
@AttilaTheMeerkat I think deep down he remains scared of them and will do anything to avoid rocking the boat. I have not told the children about what mil said to me. I really feel unsupported by DH as he cannot see it as an issue, we are stuck.
He's moved six hours away from them, he's barely in contact with them at all (and when he is it's usually only with FIL). What else can you expect from him? They are his parents.
If it was my mum who behaved in this way to DH and backed by my dad I would have held them both to account. I would have done anything I could to make him know I had his back. We have this recurrent argument monthly it never progresses and I doubt it even crosses mil mind. I really feel this could threaten our relationship.
She insulted you, he told you and made her apologise - what more do you want? She doesn't like you and you obviously don't like her. Let it go, the only person that is threatening your relationship is you.
I can't let it go she called me that name then when I was ill in psychiatric hospital said I'm sorry you believe I called you that as I didn't so essentially a non apology at a time when I was really unwell. I've never been called such a horrible name and it preys on my mind. I don't know how to move on
Your children are old enough to choose if they want to see them or not and that is not your choice it's theirs.
As for your husband it sounds as if he has minimal contact with them and doesn't ask you to see them, what more do you want him to do? He did "hold them to account" and barely has any contact.
If you are arguing every month about this he is going to get fed up because I know I would if my OH dragged up the same issue time continually. If it's threatening your marriage, it's your actions as you seem determined to have things your way even if that means the end of your marriage. I don't see he has done or is doing anything wrong but you seem fixated on a phrase your MIL used about you years ago, that's not healthy for you or your marriage.
I agree with pp, this is something you need to work on, and manage in your own head. The kids can have as much or as little contact as they like. Why would you prevent them having contact if they want to - as it isn't only hurting her, it is hurting them too. You husband has barely any contact with his parents and yet monthly you have a row about it. Let it go move on and stop letting this woman in your head so much, because you can be sure she's not loosing sleep worrying about you.
Your Dh 'begged' MIL to apologise, and moved hours away from his parents.
Unless there is a lot more to this, what more could he have done?
I know it's not healthy and as I said I have been very depressed. I don't know how to stop obsessing about being called that name. I do think it is unfair she can behave so badly at such a difficult time for our whole family and then move on never properly apologise and act like the doting granny. Surely we are a family and it's not right to treat me so badly as it impacted all of us by damaging my mental health hence functioning as a mother.
I don't know how to move on
Stop instigating the same pointless argument, for one. Your husband made the terrible mistake of telling you what she said, but he tried to make up for it by getting her to apologise. He also dramatically scaled back contact with them. You won't accept her "apology", which I wouldn't either, but your husband has no control over what his mother says. He can't force her to say what you want to hear. Don't you understand that? What more can he possibly do? How many times do you need to punish him until you're satisfied?
If your husband is otherwise a good man, I would think you could forgive him. No one is perfect, including you.
There are certain things in my life that I thought o couldn't move on from and that there was something wrong with me because I wanted to let it go but I just couldn't. Recently I had some counselling and mentioned this and when we went through it she said the original situation had caused trauma and while things are still the same how are you supposed to accept it and move on when there's a constant reminder sending you back to the original traumatic experience.
This sounds like it could be similar, especially when you mention your time with depression, it's something which has latched on and you can't unstick it no matter how much you want to and how much you try.
I'm not saying I've fixed things because I've not but understanding the trauma has really helped, for example when something reminds me of the original issue, I try and tell myself over and over again that this is separate, I also feel more in control knowing that there is a legitimate reason.
I really feel for you because it's a shitty place to be in and you just can't drop it how ever much you try- learning to come to some kind of acceptance might be easier and plus, if this ruins your marriage the cow bag wins and gets her own way!
Imo your dc should be made aware what they have put you through..
My dc would be upse I had kept quiet and offered th up to such a toxic family..
@Coconut80 that sounds awful and I can see why it would play on your mind. The fact that someone you have known so long could have said that about you in your most vulnerable state, and now you're expected to 'be the bigger person' and 'move on' without so much as a proper apology. I can understand why you feel the way that you do.
You can certainly feel disappointed in your DH's reaction and you can resolve never to see her again, but you can't really police her interactions with your teens without coming across as the villain of the piece. Hopefully they are at an age where they will start to see her for what she is - but that is their relationship to navigate.
Have you discussed this with your therapist? This seems to be quite a bit of an overreaction to being called a snake, which is in the grand scheme of things a pretty mild insult. If you're having intrusive, obsessive thoughts about it so many years on i think you should seek additional help, this seems disproportionate.
Your DH has done pretty much everything he can do here, i don't see what else you could expect of him.
I dunno, the way you're coming across on here I'm beginning to think your mil may have had a point.
Unfortunately life is unfair and you have no control over what people say about you. It's not fair to blame her for your mental health issues though, you are blowing the name calling out of all proportion probably because of your mental health problems.
She basically lost her son because of what she said. My ex MIL hated me and called me things that make "wicked snake" sound like a compliment. You will destroy your marriage if you carry on.
If it's dominating your life so much and obviously it is because of the repeated arguments, you need to go back to your GP because these are obsessive thoughts and are not good for your mental wellbeing.
OP, my MIL has said some bad things about me. I haven't forgotten them, and my husband had my back in that he would always look after me/prioritize me/support me if I didn't want to see them, but he wouldn't cut contact with his parents, and I wouldn't expect him to. I think you are obsessing over this and this is a sign of your issues as much as it is that he has done anything wrong- as someone else said, can you talk with your therapist or psychiatric nurse/consultant about this?
I don't think you are wrong to be annoyed with this woman, but you are to collapse your marriage over it many years later, when your husband has already distanced himself/moved away/hardly has contact with them anyway.
Good advice from @baubled.
I have to accept that my dh will continue contact with his db who attacked me very aggressively on a public forum. My dd is getting married this year and my bil will be at the wedding.
I too find it very hard to deal with because it seems so unfair. If you have obsessive thoughts then injustice will eat at you.
In your case your mil is revelling in upsetting you and causing discord.
Once you stop caring what she thinks then your life will improve.
Of course inside it still hurts but don’t let mil know that.
Act like she’s invisible. And your dc will know more than you realise.
My mother behaves in exactly the same towards me. And as a result, we don't speak to her, and neither does she get to spend time with my DD.
However, this is something we've enforced since she was born, if she couldn't be nice to me, she doesn't get to have a relationship with her GD. That's just not OK.
Not sure now where to go with this, your DC are old enough to make that decision, and you seem to be holding on to resentment which is making you stressed.
It sounds like you need to find ways to put her out your mind and focus on other things otherwise she's still winning.
OP I can completely understand that you don’t want anything to do with her, and rightly so. But I personally think your DP has done more than enough, as others have also said. He held her to account, moved 6 hours away and has little contact with her. He has every right to have a relationship with his parents if that’s his choice, it doesn’t sound like he expects you to as well. And in that he has been completely on your side.
Your DC’s are also old enough to make their own decisions about the contact they have with their grandparents. If you and your DP decide to tell them why you do not have a relationship with her, then they can continue to make the decision themselves.
I think you need to let this argument go for the sake of your marriage, and possibly some therapy may help you address your feelings on the matter?
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