Author Topic: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)  (Read 10927 times)

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greencat

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #60 on: October 08, 2012, 04:04:47 PM »
Slarti, your MIL has already had her opportunity to be the mother.  Do you want her to be the mother of your children too?  She's setting herself up with your DH and with your children as the ultimate maternal authority.

And the behavior pattern you described your MIL having earlier is something I've usually seen referred to as "entitled" and entered into the Special Snowflake thread.

TootsNYC

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #61 on: October 08, 2012, 05:17:40 PM »
... I feel like he's letting her believe she's right, and I want him to call her on things like this.  He thinks there's no need because he already does call her on the big things (which has worked, for the most part) and since he was planning to bring dinner anyway just to be nice, why does it matter what she thinks?

I'd agree with him except for this:  He changed his plans and brought food, and he told you about it.

If he wants to blow her off instead of confronting her, then he needs to BLOW HER OFF. Not *act* on her accusations.

I'm all for the idea that you don't have to confront everybody all the time. But that's not what he did.

Maybe you should get him to just pooh-pooh her always--a "cut and paste" line might be really useful. ("I'll just check with my wife, Mom. Talk to you!" <click>)

JenJay

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #62 on: October 08, 2012, 05:35:55 PM »
... I feel like he's letting her believe she's right, and I want him to call her on things like this.  He thinks there's no need because he already does call her on the big things (which has worked, for the most part) and since he was planning to bring dinner anyway just to be nice, why does it matter what she thinks?

I'd agree with him except for this:  He changed his plans and brought food, and he told you about it.

If he wants to blow her off instead of confronting her, then he needs to BLOW HER OFF. Not *act* on her accusations.

I'm all for the idea that you don't have to confront everybody all the time. But that's not what he did.

Maybe you should get him to just pooh-pooh her always--a "cut and paste" line might be really useful. ("I'll just check with my wife, Mom. Talk to you!" <click>)

Everything Toots said!

lkdrymom

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #63 on: October 08, 2012, 06:51:49 PM »
Personally after an incident like this I think MIL needs a small time out....like a week with no kiddos and she needs to be told exactly what she did that upset you. She may have "not meant it that way" but the words she used were strong and hurtful and she needs to be more careful in the future. Having your DH just ignore her is NEVER going to solve this problem.

VorFemme

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #64 on: October 08, 2012, 07:35:46 PM »
Look her in the eye and ask her what she plans to do if someone calls child protective services because they have overheard HER side of a phone conversation and the kids get taken away from their family.

"I was just kidding" and "I'm just a wild and crazy kind of gal" are NOT going to get that kind of bureaucratic nightmare to go away. 

I'd also be willing to bet that if THAT happened, her son might be willing to cut her out of the picture until she grows up a bit and is no longer endangering her "family" with her jokes, instead of only endangering their serenity.

Speaking as someone who has a daughter with a CrazyMIL who managed to get herself entirely cut out of her only grandchild's life due to threatening to shoot one of her ILs.....and being taken seriously due to the past time in jail and in a mental ward.....she stands to loose a lot more than she might think she does.

But it's her right to be "wild & crazy" only up to the point where it doesn't endanger anyone.  There are certain words you DON'T use unless you really want to put your family at risk of being split up for "investigation" - and she used some of them in that phone call.  If anyone who didn't know that she is a "wild & crazy kind of gal" who is known to use hyperbole and be outrageous on the off chance that it gets here what she wants - there could have been a very nasty outcome.....

And "next time" there may be someone listening who doesn't know that all of this is "just MIL being outrageous"...

On the other hand, my experience with Crazy MIL at the wedding and afterward might be coloring my world view the very opposite of "rosy"....Insanity Emerald or something like that.
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humbleonion

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #65 on: October 08, 2012, 07:42:14 PM »
This feels like a version of the child's trick of playing mom against dad. When one parent (you) didn't give her the answer she wanted, she went to the other parent (your DH). And he gave in.

 As parents, it's important for you to present a united front, for your children, and your mother in law. What's going to happen when your daughter is old enough to pick up on this behavior?

Dindrane

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #66 on: October 08, 2012, 10:38:01 PM »
I think I've suggested similar tactics on threads of yours before, but I think you and your DH would really benefit from both of you having some sort of stock phrase that you always use to respond to your MIL. It gives you time to check in with each other and see if what she's saying is outrageous-bad, outrageous-you-can-live-with-it, or actually not outrageous. And if you respond more or less the same way every time, you don't give her the same opening for the PA digs. Because you always respond this way, whether it's good, bad, or indifferent.

It's basically the same idea as what Toots suggested. From what I can see (based on the threads you've posted over the years), your MIL sticks her nose in to a lot of things in your life and your marriage. You don't always mind, it's not always worth fighting over, but she's always there. You and your DH frequently don't have any time or space to check in with each other because your MIL keeps herself so firmly between the two of you, and it results in a lot of misunderstanding and, at least on your end, frustration and hurt feelings. If you and your DH both start responding to your MIL with words but no real meaning, you'll shove her out of that space in between the two of you without ever having to have a big show-down.

And in the end, it's really not all that different a way of reacting as what your DH already does. It is, in essence, ignoring your MIL. You say something just agreeable enough that she feels that you have listened and responded, and she doesn't feel like she needs to argue, and then you go off and do whatever it is you were going to do in the first place.


Slartibartfast

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #67 on: October 09, 2012, 02:41:11 AM »
From what I can see (based on the threads you've posted over the years), your MIL sticks her nose in to a lot of things in your life and your marriage. You don't always mind, it's not always worth fighting over, but she's always there.

This is it exactly!  For all MIL and FIL (mostly FIL)'s missteps with raising DH and my SILs, MIL really does know the "right" way to raise a kid most of the time, at least in the sense of the big things - not rewarding bad behavior, seizing teachable moments when possible, treating Babybartfast as either a "little girl" or a "big girl" as necessary - and most importantly, she does back off when we're explicit with her.  She's like a toddler about it, though: "But you never SAID I couldn't take the sled inside and go sledding down the stairs!  (Or a more accurate example:) You never told me I wasn't allowed to buy your kid a second birthday cake and ask everyone in the store to sing happy birthday to her!  How was I supposed to know that wasn't allowed?"

Piratelvr1121

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #68 on: October 09, 2012, 07:52:09 AM »
My mother used to do stuff like that, and my dad too, but it was mostly my mother playing both ends against the middle.  She'd say one thing to me and another thing to DH, then step away and let us argue and when we found out in discussing it that we'd been lied to she'd deny ever saying anything.

Like once DH went on a trip with a friend and my mother told me he said to her "It will be like a vacation for pirate to have the boys all to herself while I'm on an actual vacation."  When I told him that, he laughed and said "I'm not stupid enough to actually think that."  Then my mother denied saying it.  ::) That's a mild example but there was another time my father told me that DH resented me for not taking on more bills and that DH said he felt like I didn't have any financial responsibility at all.  Not true, as there were a few bills I did pay at the time since I was working, but DH was paid more and has a better head for numbers.

I took it up with DH and he looked at me like I had two heads. He said "I don't mind that you don't pay more bills, it works out just fine for us the way things are going."  Then Dad denied saying anything when DH brought it up with him. ::)
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Snooks

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #69 on: October 09, 2012, 09:51:12 AM »
I know nothing about raising children, or about having grandparents, but I do know about having a DH who believes everything is best when you don't say anything.  If yours is anything like mine then he'll wonder why you're even bothered by this happening and it will have flown out of his mind the moment that burger hit his mouth or something shiny went by, and that's tiring to live with when you're the person who mulls things over.  It's a painful process but I think you may need to force DH to step up and start correcting his mother to ensure that she doesn't get worse further down the line (kids watching banned movies/getting toys they were told they couldn't have).  We're all here backing you :)

Hillia

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #70 on: October 09, 2012, 11:04:40 AM »
My DH is like this; he was brought up as definitely the last in line, and his things have always been regarded as community property by his family, especially his brother.  his feeling has always been that it's just too much bother to raise a fuss.  We're in the middle of a discussion right now over the difference between 'holding a grudge' and 'recognizing a pattern of behavior.

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Kiwichick

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #71 on: October 09, 2012, 11:49:16 AM »
From your opener:
'DH was all affronted that I hadn't thought to buy anything for Babybartfast when I got myself lunch, so he showed up with burgers (same chain, oh joy) to ensure we weren't all starving.'

'DH left work early to bring us food and was all mad at me'

Neither of those jibe with your husband disbelieving what your MIL tells him about you.


Nuala

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #72 on: October 09, 2012, 12:54:50 PM »
I understand all about having to pick your battles, but I want to look at this incident in another way.

Your MIL was *tattling* on you. Instead of discussing her concern with you, as adults do, she went to your husband and threw out words like "starving" and "taunting."

Even accepting that she is a dramatic person, those are inflammatory words. And grown-ups do not tattle on each other.

She is inserting herself between you and your husband and between you and your child. You and your husband together need to find a way to stop this, as ignoring it won't work.

It's not all or nothing. It is possible to establish boundaries without cutting her off entirely. But you and DH need to be on the same page.


Venus193

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #73 on: October 09, 2012, 01:37:48 PM »
Your MIL is a destructive force.  She can hide behind the "I'm a wild and crazy girl" line only so far; the inflammatory words she's used here -- "taunting" and "starving" -- have more than crossed the line.

If this leads to a CPS situation by any means you will never hear the end of it.  Not just from her, but from CPS.

I think you need to cut her out of your life at least long enough to get your husband to understand how destructive this is and come up with an action plan for the future.

Editeer

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Re: You're starving your kid! (MIL again)
« Reply #74 on: October 09, 2012, 05:05:34 PM »
The bigger thing is that by not saying anything (positive or negative) to his mother, he feels like he's just ignoring her.  I feel like he's letting her believe she's right, and I want him to call her on things like this.  He thinks there's no need because he already does call her on the big things (which has worked, for the most part) and since he was planning to bring dinner anyway just to be nice, why does it matter what she thinks?


DH doesn't see that this issue *is* a big thing. Perhaps you need to talk with him and make him understand that. He needs to agree that certain things MIL does are not acceptable--undermining you; tattling on you to him; etc. They are a "big thing" because they hurt you, even if he personally isn't bothered.

Then you need to do as others have suggested--have a stock reply when MIL does something like this. For example, if MIL calls DH to criticize or tattle on you, DH has to reply, "Mom, I will check with Slarti" or "Mom, I agree with the way Slarti cares for our children--please don't bring this up again."