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AIBU MIL parties?

64 replies

pandarific · 17/07/2017 13:06

MIL and FIL like to entertain, and often either have friends of theirs over to dinner or throw a big garden party type thing with aunts uncles and cousins of DH, so say 20-30 people.

These are pleasant but can last 6 hours +, which I find wearing, especially as they include a half hour drive each way.

We also see them a lot - like every two weeks a lot for this and that. They are very nice and all, but I'm a massive introvert and really don't find socialising the most fun, so am often found to be thinking 'oh HURRAY, another birthday/event' - there's always some sort of thing they want to do. I work full time, I like my chill out time, you know? But hey ho, a first world problem, nothing to get het up about.

However, I am presently a bit miffed, maybe you can tell me if AIBU? we got married a few months back and received photos recently, four elderly relations couldn't attend the wedding, MIL suggests we come around and show elderly relatives the pictures - fair enough, it would be a nice thing to do for them, will obviously be a low key thing, not a massive fuss etc - all fine. We have a small 1 bed flat at the aforementioned distance with stairs the elderly people find hard so it was decided it would be at theirs.

Can you guess what actually happens? Yup, entire extended family were invited by MIL (without asking us, just informing DH the night before) so it was the usual 25 people, MIL and FIL hosting with food/drink, 6+ hours of socialising centred around our wedding.

AIBU to feel a little bit that liberties have been taken a bit, here? I just felt a bit on display - when I thanked MIL (as you have to, don't you?) she said 'Oh you're worth it', which has annoyed me a bit - I don't think it really was 'for me', and if it was, perhaps it would have been a good idea to ask if we'd actually want a massive thing before just arranging it?

It's no biggie, but AIBU to be slightly peeved or am I a miserable caaah? Grin

OP posts:

acquiescence · 17/07/2017 13:09

Sounds like yabu, sorry. You could go for a bit then leave. Or not go at all. Attendance is not compulsory! Maybe something you and your DH need to discuss if it is him who wants to go. Drive separately so you can leave early?


MagnumAddict · 17/07/2017 13:11

Your mil sounds lovely. You don't sound like you ever object to the parties so how is she to know you hate them?

I always try to judge by intentions and hers seem to be good. Maybe you just need to open up a bit more?

Congratulations on your wedding


WorraLiberty · 17/07/2017 13:13

I'm assuming she doesn't tie you to the washing line for 6+ hours and that you're free to leave any time you choose? Grin


ingeniusnonsense · 17/07/2017 13:16



5foot5 · 17/07/2017 13:16

Another one here who just thinks she was trying to be nice.

It sounds to me like she is trying to make you feel like one of the family and the way she sees it is that everyone in the family is interested in you and your wedding so why not get them all round.

Also I don't see why you object to the "Oh you're worth it" comment. That sounds like a lovely thing to say.

Perhaps as time goes on you will become more accustomed to these gatherings and will start to enjoy them a bit more rather than enduring them.


Justhadmyhaircut · 17/07/2017 13:16

As someone who's mil has never even made her a cuppa yabu. .


pandarific · 17/07/2017 13:18

Grin Worra. No, no tying, but on this occasion we were the main attraction and had to talk through the pictures so couldn't go.

And as DH is always fine with staying for hours (and hours and hours) it would be very obvious it was me who wanted to go, which would be awkward.

I'm a resentful wimp, amn't I?

OP posts:

kiwipie · 17/07/2017 13:21


She sounds proud of you all and her family. Be thankful you have someone who wants to celebrate you all so much.


averythinline · 17/07/2017 13:23

Get busier! even if busy is lounging around in your pj's do not have to go to all these events...
think would strike this up to experience....and realise you need to start saying no- every 2 weeks is a ridiculous tie....every couple of months would be my max -

was it always like this though? you may need to cut down gently if you've been going along this frequently ...


peekyboo · 17/07/2017 13:24

What sort of conversations do you have with your MIL? It might be worth chatting to her sometime about how you're a available introvert so whole you enjoy aren't everyone (cough) you often feel that you want some quiet time after a couple of hours. Preparing the ground like this should make it easier to leave if you need to, without hurting her feelings.
Ultra sociable people find it hard to understand quiet time as they seem to recharge from being around other people. But she seems to care about you and like you so it's definitely worth having the conversation.
If you were to get your DH to talk to her it might not end as well because if he's as sociable as his mum he won't know how to put it the same as you could yourself.


2014newme · 17/07/2017 13:27

But you don't have to go to every event they hold nor do you have to see them every fortnight. Your problem is you, you won't decline an invitation!
Thanks but I can't come is all you need to say
Problem of your own making!


Anatidae · 17/07/2017 13:27

Talk through the pictures??? Oh this is us getting married. And yes this one is us getting married. There's some people who were there, when we got married... yes that's us getting married too...

I would absolutely HATE this. I've never even looked at my wedding photos myself 😳 The thought of a huge bunch of people looking at them makes me feel ill.

You don't have to attend these events you know. Just have a chat with MIL and tell her you're not really into big social events.


Anatidae · 17/07/2017 13:28

And yes, just DONT GO to them all. If anyone gets arsey just smile and say it's lovely you enjoy it, I'm just not a big social butterfly and I need my quiet time.


BenLui · 17/07/2017 13:30

I actually don't think you unreasonable about this event as obviously you wouldn't be able to slip out quietly.

However forewarned is forearmed, next time anything is being arranged "for you" take more charge and make sure the arrangements suit you.

Say specifically (and forcefully) that you want to keep it small, organise to see the people individually in their homes etc.

For future events you need to work with your DH to agree how long you are prepared to attend for.

Marriage is about teamwork and requires compromises on both sides.


WorraLiberty · 17/07/2017 13:31

Ahh then it's your DH you need to have a chat with, not your MIL.

Arrange before the next party, roughly how long you'll stay and stick to it.

Or if it's possible, arrange separate transport so you're free to leave when you want to.


ConstanceCraving · 17/07/2017 13:31

This is scraping the barrel as far as MIL threads goes OP. Jeez. I had to read it three times to find out what she'd done wrong in your eyes obv Grin


SheepyFun · 17/07/2017 13:33

Send DH on his own. We do that sometimes; his family may well think I'm odd (they'd probably be right!), but it works for us.


Moussemoose · 17/07/2017 13:37

I am an extrovert but live with and am mother to an introvert. I don't think people realise how stressful forced socialising is if you don't like it.

EVERYONE love a party! Well no they don't and some people hate them. Being an extrovert is the norm and straying from that makes you unreasonable.

No yanbu but you need to tactfully and gently explain that you are not being rude, you do like them you just need more space and quiet time than they do.


BenLui · 17/07/2017 13:38

Constance I think that's a bit unfair. Often one of the hardest things about being newly married is fitting into a different family culture and tradition.

It sounds like the MIL is a nice lady but that doesn't mean that big parties are automatically easy for the OP.

Or are we not allowed to post unless the MIL is downright evil? Hmm


EdmundCleverClogs · 17/07/2017 13:39

I don't think you're being completely unreasonable, then again I was always the one who didn't have patience for big family get-togethers. If it was my partner's family I'd probably be climbing the walls, but there's that annoying social obligation (especially when your partner doesn't mind all the incessant small talk). I'd also be cross thinking I was turning up for an hour to please older relatives only to be bombarded with half his family, sounds exhausting at the very least and quite unfair without warning.

Of course, there's no 'bad guy' in all this. Your MiL is obviously the hostess type and you're an introvert, both totally fine to be but can obviously be a clash of personality. I would suggest you possibly cut down visits (not your husband, just you), possibly to once a month. You're not obligated to go, and if your MiL asks why then you could quite honestly say 'I like visiting of course, but I find hours long visits with many people to be very tiring/overwhelming, so thought I'd just let husband get on with it as he's far more the social type.' Or just find a 'hobby' that takes up some of your weekend, so you have an excuse to duck out.


notsomuchgreen · 17/07/2017 13:40


I would detest this too. It's mostly because they were not being straightforward, they've got you down as shy, maybe, so need a little pushing to get going socially. That's wrong in my book, it just makes the relationship worse. You've been coerced because they wanted another shindig and your pics were the excuse.

Petty behaviour IMO Confused


HazelBite · 17/07/2017 13:41

Gosh I thought you were my DIL posting there for a moment. However she has been part of our family now for 6 years and she is now embracing our "functions".
i know it was originally alien to her as her parents never entertained, she was not expected to "participate" initially but years on she moves heaven and earth to attend.
Ds2's girlfriend spent Xmas with us as opposed to her family as she said to DS "your family have so much fun when you all get together"

Your MIL sounds like my sort of person.
She will not judge you if you do not readily join in, however try relaxing and enjoy the love Grin


EdmundCleverClogs · 17/07/2017 13:42

ConstanceCraving bully for you that you don't find constant large get togethers tiring or difficult. The op obviously does but I can't see her suggesting the MiL is the devil incarnate either. She's only asking advice on how to deal with the situation - or has it got to the point where no one can ask anything on here if it dares involve PiL in any way?


KC225 · 17/07/2017 13:44

Sorry I think YABU. If they expected you to host the parties, do the catering or force to waitress then you would have a point. Don't go to every one, go to every other Let DH go and you meet a friend. Or DH goes for the full day and you turn up for a couple of hours at the end of the day. And half an hours drive is nothing. Stop moaning, hoik up your bra strap, woman up and say no if you don't want to go.


MissEliza · 17/07/2017 13:48

My MIL is definitely like that. For several years I had to endure these long boring 'gatherings'. We even had to come to parties she threw for work colleagues! We would also be invited for lunch/dinner and find some annoying person from her office also invited. Then when ds1 was a toddler and our time got more precious, dh threw his toys out of the pram! He started to say he wouldn't come for dinner if anyone else was there. She once told me she was going to throw a surprise party for his non-milestone birthday. I had to let him know and he said fuck that! So really the solution is in your dh's hands.

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