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MIL constant unsolicited advice/ passive aggressive comments

4 replies

Jasperjonesc · 19/11/2019 11:08

Where to start... so we returned from a long weekend away at the in laws last night which has resulted in a big argument between DH and I.

I’ve been with DH for 15 years, married 2, DS is 1. ILs live 4 hours away in the country, we live in a flat in London. When my son was born, they didn’t come to visit (they could have stayed in a hotel…?).
They first met DS when he was 4 months old in a town 2 hours away from us both. Since then, we’ve scheduled to meet in this middle location 4 times and they’ve cancelled each time the night before. It has always been us who visit them, the last time was in April but it’s such a long drive for a baby we’re reluctant to visit more (well, that’s one reason!). This time, MIL made a few comments about how we never visit.
When DS was 2 months, my mum became critically ill, 6 weeks in hospital (2 weeks in ICU). It was a difficult time as baby also had colic. We could have done with their support during that time, but there we go. A visit from the ILs would have been great for DS (it was offered but they never followed through and could never find a date to come). This is the thing with them, all words no action. My feeling is, if DH, DS survived that period of our lives, we can survive anything and I really value the family/ friends who did support us without having to be asked.

MIL has always been opinionated about us (and everyone she comes across) nosy, incredibly controlling and bossy but she’s getting worse and I hate that she makes little comments in front of our son (he doesn’t understand yet but he will). Basically everything she says is a passive aggressive criticism directed at my DH/us. She doesn’t really have any friends which is telling- literally everyone she’s ever been friendly with either doesn’t talk to her anymore or she doesn’t talk to them (always v dramatic).

DH never sticks up for us/ himself/me or confronts her and says what she’s saying isn’t right. She’s just so extreme- thank god she doesn’t live closer but when we do see her she’s so OTT nosy and constantly makes comments about us living in rented accommodation (we’re saving but still need at least £15k for the deposit, such is London/anywhere within M25 prices prices), why haven’t we got a deposit yet? Asking us what’s our “Plan” is (none of her business?!), where we’re going to move to (and then completely taking over, getting maps out and plotting where we’ll move to).
She fails to realise the cost of childcare/ rent/ bills/ misc costs so in reality we have maybe £300 total left over per month we can save (if we’re lucky), so getting that deposit together will take years. It frustrates me that she has to highlight this and even that we’re justifying ourselves to her!

This last visit we arrived after a 6 hour journey (traffic/ baby breaks), and the cot was completely dismantled – so DH had to put it together once we arrived and the room wasn’t ready. They then sat with us for maybe 5 minutes and had to go and tend to their animals (they keep chickens/ horses). So it really felt like we weren’t wanted there. FIL made some comment on Sunday to DH about how he wasn’t fussed about seeing us, he only wanted to see DS.

Basically, I’ve told my DH he has to step up and say something when MIL makes shirty comments and next time he visits I’ll either stay home (he’s so reluctant to go on his own) OR if I have to come, will get an Airbnb in the town as feel staying in their house completely infantiles us in MIL eyes. We had a big argument about this last night as DH feels I need to just ignore it all as we only see ILs maybe once a year and they're getting older so just put up with it…

Is it reasonable for me to stop visiting? They literally NEVER visit us. I don’t want to influence or ruin my DS’s relationship with his grandparents but they are SUCH hard work and I don’t want him to think its normal for his grandma to diss his parents.

Also, the way she refers to our living situation is as if we live in a garden shed and its permanent/ we’re not giving our son the best childhood- SO infuriating. I know I should ignore but I’ve been doing that for 15 years and its so bloody annoying.

Has anyone else ever been in a similar situation and its worked out ok?! Or am I destined to deal with this crap forever!

OP posts:

DeathStare · 19/11/2019 11:15

I'd send them a little note/email to say soemthing along the lines of "Thank you very much for having us to stay this weekend. You're right it would be good to see each other more frequently. Your turn to visit us next time! Let us know when works for you and we will see what we can sort out"

Puts the ball firmly in their court and gives you an opt-out from visiting them until they have made the effort to visit you.


PepePig · 19/11/2019 11:22

Tell your DH until he stands up for his family you won't be going. He can go on his own.


Cherrysoup · 19/11/2019 11:33

Do they have the horses at home? Because I know how difficult it is to get anyone to look after them if they're not on a yard. Saying that, it's not impossible.

She sounds like a total PITA, so I would just not visit. I bet you your DH doesn't arse himself. I would, however, tell him he needs to be on board backing you up with others (if you're in the right).


Jasperjonesc · 19/11/2019 15:21

Thanks everyone. I think I do need to calmly talk to DH about this - we need to be on the same side, I can't be the one noticing every shitty little comment and DH can't be the one ignoring them.

Also I had to google PITA- I like that one, def using that one in future! ;)

OP posts:
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