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MIL advice please

(16 Posts)
kite Tue 28-Jul-09 09:52:10


(I also have this thread in what to do section).

MIL & I do not get on very well really & over the years it is a constant undercurrent with her. She just does not like me at all now I have accepted that & I have no problem with it any longer but she is still causing a problem in my marriage to her son.

She does not want to call to see the kids when I am here on my own she wants DH to be here, he is working all week and most weekends (2 jobs) & his time is very limited at home. We have had a very rough time recently my sister died from cancer, my dad is quite ill and we also have a new baby here.DH told her some private information about what was happening here (he told her he was only telling her & it was not to go any further) - she in turn went and told all her family this information. DH was very upset that she did it but she is not a bit bothered she just said nothing about what she did and carried on regardless.

I just want to be polite and civil to her now but not really be involved with her as I have had enough hassle in my own life and I feel as she has no fondness for me there is no point anymore.

So what is the best thing to do?? Anyone got some good advice??

Sparkletastic Tue 28-Jul-09 09:56:22

What does DH think? Is he willing to keep her at arm's length - ie he can take DCs to see her when he has time / inclination to do so but she is no longer welcome in your house? She sounds pretty poisonous and if I were you I'd remain civil but give up pretence of any 'family' relationship between you and her.

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 09:58:44

this is ALPHA female terratory. you can be civil and polite all you want but as long as you allow her to be alpha female in your family - you will be unhappy.

you need to assert yourself

tell dh "if she wants to see the grandchildren she can do it whilst i am here or not at all!"

kite Tue 28-Jul-09 10:05:06

She is welcome in our house but does not want to call when it's just me and the kids.

DH works weekends & also all week so his time is pretty limited(she lives nearly hr away).I would call with kids during week but she is quite rude to me so I just don't bother anymore. When my sister was ill time was quite limited to call to her & now my dad is quite ill I try & get to my parents house when I have free time (they live half an hr from me).

DH thinks she is just being very silly and selfish but I do feel he would like some kind of relationship with her ( that's why he told her the information) but she seems to not care about our feelings here at all seeing as she told everyone once she got the information.

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 10:08:27

well remind your dh - that your family consists of you him and the kids - everyone else is secondary.

if she wants a relationship with her son - then - being nice to the gf or wife is essential!!

HolyGuacamole Tue 28-Jul-09 15:30:57

Agree with custardo 100%.

My MIL did this a while ago (maliciously gossiped to her family about things that were/are very private regarding my family, I was furious and that is an understatement angry), which she denied, then admitted, and nowadays can't remember doing it (very convenient) hmm At the time she got my wrath in no uncertain terms!

You need to put your foot down big time. You don't need to be horrible or stoop to her level but instead, assert your authority. And in future, none of your private family business is spoken about outside of your own four walls unless you expressly say that it is ok to do so.

I have done the above with my MIL and also what custardo say's and things are much better. We get along 'ok' and it seems to be improving and that suits me fine. She still doesn't call unless DH is at home (and to be fair, I don't ever call her either) but that suits me because I really don't have that much to say to her and vice versa. I have the hope that over time, it can keep on improving.

You two don't have to like each other but for the sake of the relationship between her, her son and the GC, she must make an effort to be civil and to stay out of your business. Let her know that if she wants to be a cow, then she can stay away and if she wants to be civil, then she is more than welcome to be involved in your family (within your well defined boundaries).

Good luck!

warthog Tue 28-Jul-09 18:05:38

i wouldnt bother. if your dh wants a relationship with her, leave him to it.

kite Thu 30-Jul-09 07:49:55

Thanks girls, she wanted to call yesterday DH told her that he was not home till late from work & that he was working during the day so he would not be home really. She said for him to pick a day that suits him when he is there he said none really as he was quite busy with the two jobs he heard nothing back (These were all txt messages).

So we will see DH has said we will keep a distance from her now & not tell her as much info in future.

isn't it awful that this kinda thing goes on in life when you look at the bigger picture & how things can change so fast like my sister dying it just makes you realise how short life is, can't understand why she is so bitter??

Thanks girls for replying to me smile

2rebecca Thu 30-Jul-09 23:30:45

Why is it so awful that she wants to see her son? Her telling your husband's family (why do you call it "her" family not your husband's family?)your family's news if you'd asked her not to sounds unreasonable but if my son marries if I visit I will be interested in seeing him. Yes I'd also see his wife and children but I would expect and hope my bond with my son would be stronger than my bond with them. Why are you so keen to see her as you sound as though you don't like her much and why are you so keen to stop her seeing her son?
I'm not sure why you think she sounds bitter.
I never visited my inlaws without my husband and my exhusband never called to visit my parents without me. Parents generally want to see their children, not the people they married, unless they are looking after their grandchildren or something, but even if I looked after my son's kids if I never got to see him and just saw his wife all the time I would feel disappointed.
Surely your mum prefers to see you to your husband and would be disappointed if you never visited and she just saw him all the time?
If your sister is dying then isn't it reasonable that your husband's family know about this?

kite Fri 31-Jul-09 08:16:39

2rebecca it is not about my sister when she was dying ( my sister is now dead) it was information he told her after that in confidence he told her it was between him she said fine & then told everyone the information.

What is wrong with saying that it is her family?? It was her brothers - sisters & her daughters that she told this private info too??

I am sure many sons tell their mums private info. I do at times with my parents knowing it won't go any further to my siblings ( not in a big deal way just to have a chat about really). When she was told it was private between them then yes I do fell she should not have told everyone once she knew -it has nothing at all to do with my sister!!

kite Fri 31-Jul-09 08:19:01

Just to add - I'm not stopping her seeing her son - never have ( where did I say I'm stopping him??)

twoclimbingboys Fri 31-Jul-09 08:48:18

kite - I would leave him to his relationship with his mum (as you are doing) and just stop making any effort with her at all.

2rebecca - your post is a little strange to me. Why would your bond with your son automatically be stronger than the one between your and your grandchildren? My mum has a super relationship with my sons. She also sees a fair bit of my DH without me - when he s collecting the boys, dropping them off, at family occasions if I am working etc. Of course you would want to see your son, but would you refuse to pop in if he wasn't there?

2rebecca Fri 31-Jul-09 09:58:31

It's just my experience and that of my friends that the parent child bond is usually stronger than the grandparent grandchild one. Most of us don't live round the corner from our grandparents/ parents though. When I see my dad he's happy to see my kids but more pleased to see me and talks more to me. We have 40 odd years of connection between us. Likewise when I see my brother I'm closer to him than to his wife and his kids. To me that seems natural. I would be surprised if someone was closer to their grandparents than parents, it seems the wrong way round to me. Not to say that grandparents wouldn't want to see their grandchildren, just that it's natural to be closer to your children, even when they're adults. I still don't see what she's done to be called bitter, apart from perhaps being not that keen on her DIL. She's not refusing to see her grandkids and DIL, just saying she'd prefer her son to be there as well if she's going to visit.
The poor bloke sounds seriously overworked though. If it's his decision not to see her fair enough, don't see what there is to get worked up about here though apart from 1 incident of indiscretion.

kite Fri 31-Jul-09 14:06:22

2rebecca thank you for your reply there is more than one incident with mil this is just the latest one, hence why I was now looking for an outsiders point of view on it.

yes DH works very hard & he is a fantastic husband & father! I'm not looking for her to be close to me or for us to be best friends but a bit of manners from her would be nice?

twoclimbingboys thank you for your reply also. I am going to do as you suggest & just stop making an effort.

skorpion Fri 31-Jul-09 22:26:05

2rebecca - I'm sorry but I completely disagree. I like seeing my IL on my own and get on with them very well. I feel part of their family and not 'son's wife'. I think this is only natural and also hope that my daughter, once she's born, will be as close to them.
I agree that people do not always take to each other, but kite is right, a bit of civility and good manners don't hurt. And you don't go bleating out stories, whatever they may be, if discretion was requested of you.
I think that living with such hostility must be very difficult and the MIL is only damaging herself in the long run. I hope you work things out, kite, you seem to have great support in your DH.

Robeena Sun 02-Aug-09 06:23:57

kite - I have to agree with 2climbingboys, it's up to your husband to re-establishes a relationship with his mother that opens up a way you and the children can then try and have a relationship with her.

2rebecca - I also completely disagree with you. My parent's and my parents-in-law would pick the relationship with their grandchildren over their relationship with their children and I have no problems with that. I have a fantastic relationship with my in-laws and would often visit them without my other half (even before I had kids).

Hope things work out Kite.

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