Author Topic: FIL's unwanted opinions about everything, incl. wed photo, Response #42, 60, 64  (Read 20840 times)

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lorelai

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Thanks for your kind words. I spoke to them yesterday for Father's day and they both couldn't wait to get off the phone with me. It's clear they're still mad at me for my "bad behavior". Usually they insist on talking to me every week which I dread, so I think this is a good thing. I can actually take some space to myself now.

MIL walks into our room without knocking. I have begged DH to put a lock on the door but he thinks it's rude since it's their home. He does ask her not to, but she doesn't always remember.

Upon reflecting, I think the main point of conflict is that they are looking to parent me, and I'm not looking for parents to tell me what to do. Don't really know how to resolve that.

Curly Wurly Doggie Breath

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Sweetie.............. Get a $2 Door stop Wedge. She won't be able to just walk in on you while you are in your room

((((((((((((((((Hugs)))))))))))))))

                          The Southern Cross Flag. Australia

TootsNYC

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Upon reflecting, I think the main point of conflict is that they are looking to parent me, and I'm not looking for parents to tell me what to do. Don't really know how to resolve that.

Stop acting like a daughter. Start acting distant.

And refuse to talk to them every week when they call. You don't like it, so don't do it. Start teaching them what you like, which is that you want them to be more formal around you, and less familiar. You WANT them to treat you like more of a stranger than they do.

And stop worrying about whether they have to "walk on eggshells"--maybe your DH should tell them, when they complain about that, "That's just the way she is. You need to treat her more formally." instead of thinking that he needs to fix YOU for their sake.

When your MIL comes in "your" room without knocking, *act offended*!! Be really shocked, and back her out of the room. Don't be "nice." Start showing them where the boundaries are. *Live them,* don't "talk" them. 

At least, live your side of them. It's rude to walk into someone's bedroom when the door is closed, even if it is their house (I actually agree--asking them to put a lock on it is rude). So act as though someone has done something rude to you. Say, "MIL! Please knock!" And then act as though you're offended and sort of mad.

It's OK for you to change the dynamic so that *they* are worried about offending *you*.

bloo

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Re: FIL's unwanted opinions about everything, incl. my wed photo (long)
« Reply #63 on: June 21, 2013, 03:45:18 PM »
Audrey Quest's examples are very much something that needs to be thought about.

OP, your FIL and MIL are bullies.  Do you want your future children to be bullied?  Now is the time to have an honest talk with DH about how you will no longer be mistreated and that you will not allow your children to be treated in this manner.  If that means no contact with them or leaving once FIL starts running anyone down. 

They are in control of their own behavior.  You have a responsibly to yours and your family's health (physical, emotional, and mental).

Totally agree with Audrey Quest as well!

My in-laws were very late to the game. They had a hard time figuring out a simple concept: "mean to bloo=little-to-no-time-spent with bloo, dh or kids."

Although within 10 years of marriage I'm just as mean as they are now and have no trouble holding my own against possible nastiness when I feel obligated to be around them (rare). Surprisingly they are nicer since I rarely deign to grace them with my presence.  OP, do you realize what I just typed? I'm worth treating nicely. I'm a nice person to people and I enjoy being helpful. I value myself. I don't waste much time being around people that don't believe I have value.

lorelai

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Upon reflecting, I think the main point of conflict is that they are looking to parent me, and I'm not looking for parents to tell me what to do. Don't really know how to resolve that.

Stop acting like a daughter. Start acting distant.

And refuse to talk to them every week when they call. You don't like it, so don't do it. Start teaching them what you like, which is that you want them to be more formal around you, and less familiar. You WANT them to treat you like more of a stranger than they do.

And stop worrying about whether they have to "walk on eggshells"--maybe your DH should tell them, when they complain about that, "That's just the way she is. You need to treat her more formally." instead of thinking that he needs to fix YOU for their sake.

When your MIL comes in "your" room without knocking, *act offended*!! Be really shocked, and back her out of the room. Don't be "nice." Start showing them where the boundaries are. *Live them,* don't "talk" them. 

At least, live your side of them. It's rude to walk into someone's bedroom when the door is closed, even if it is their house (I actually agree--asking them to put a lock on it is rude). So act as though someone has done something rude to you. Say, "MIL! Please knock!" And then act as though you're offended and sort of mad.

It's OK for you to change the dynamic so that *they* are worried about offending *you*.

I'm really into this advice. Thank you! I will definitely try to employ these techniques this month. Earlier this week my MIL fell down and fractured her hip in a few places. She had surgery yesterday and we found out it will be a long recovery, both in the hospital and at home. I told DH to let me know when he would like me to come out. I am grateful he told me to stay back initially. But now that we found out it's a very long recovery, he asked me to come out for a weekend. Which I can do, mainly because I miss him and I want to support him. I also want to support her, but I don't know how much anyone even wants to see me. And I also have to admit that part of me is resentful because we had planned to visit my family this upcoming holiday weekend, and I haven't seen my niece since xmas and I really miss her. And we've spent two trips with his family this year already. Did I mention it's kind of hard to make a baby without a husband? Our whole summer is kind of turning upside down now. I think this all makes me sound really selfish, but I guess I just need to vent for a second. I would never make them feel bad for this.

I feel badly for MIL as her mobility/freedom is so important to her, and I don't know that my presence will be of any comfort to her but I'll do my best to make my presence a pleasant one. One thing I'm good at is making and buying her favorite foods, so I can put myself to work doing that.

Every time I think of the last visit my blood still boils, but I have a feeling FIL will be too preoccupied to be a jerk to me, and MIL is and will probably still be on pain medication by the time I go there. Even though I feel badly, I do intend to protect myself. I will speak up as much as possible. And as we are actively trying for a baby, DH wants me to have as little stress as possible, so he also wants to speak up for me. I just have to give him the signal if he doesn't get it on his own.

I guess because of this, MIL can't come screaming into our bedroom in the mornings for awhile. I thought about the next time that does happen (maybe a few months down the line) to tell her that she can let me know what time she expects us to come out, so there's no reason to come and fetch us. And that I really don't want her to interrupt our personal time. :D

menley

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<snip>

I guess because of this, MIL can't come screaming into our bedroom in the mornings for awhile. I thought about the next time that does happen (maybe a few months down the line) to tell her that she can let me know what time she expects us to come out, so there's no reason to come and fetch us. And that I really don't want her to interrupt our personal time. :D

Honestly, if it were me, I might just let her interrupt my personal time with my husband. Let her get an eyeful... it might be the only thing that stops her from trying to enter again!  >:D

Pen^2

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My parents used to make very blunt statements about how other people, especially family, were failing in certain areas. My father's favourite thing to say when he saw me was "you need to wash your hair, it looks greasy." Often only a few hours after I had washed my hair, too.

I just put up with it, because I had grown up that way, until DH came along. While we were just going out, I didn't want him to have to have these things said to him. It's easier to stick up for someone else, I guess, because they often matter more to you. So when they said something rude, we would just say calmly, "wow, what a rude thing to say," and then carry on the conversation among ourselves. They would sometimes stew in silence, but we would be so busy talking that it was easy to pretend not to notice it. Usually they would protest, though. Looking back, we should have just gotten up and left the room, even mid-meal. I recommend you do this: "that's a very rude thing to say," before leaving, if it gets too bad.

With my parents, it didn't make them change their ways at all, but it felt good.

And both my parents used to do this really annoying thing with entering your room: they would knock as they walked in. The knock was completely superfluous. I can't tell you how many times, as a body-conscious and awkward teen, they walked in on me changing like it was nothing. To this day, a knock at the door makes my heart pound. I learned to have a messy room all the time, so a pile of clothes or books would buffer the door. They would start to open it, but it would hit a noisy pile of something and they would pause a bit, startled by the sound, before continuing to enter. It gave me a bit more warning. As I got older, I would often have chairs or other furniture in front of the door ("I was just moving it to reach something"), so they couldn't enter at all. Maybe you can leave your big heavy suitcase in front of the door and keep forgetting to move it. "Wow, knock next time, so I can move my suitcase out of the way!"

It sounds like you're on the right track here: a distant relationship is probably the best you can hope for. It'll be hard, but you can practice on your next visit. Don't get engaged in conversations beyond "uh-huh,"  "that's nice," and "oh". Bring lots of books that urgently need reading.

And I'd like to second what has already been said upthread: consider carefully if you want your possible future children around these bullies, even supervised. Unless they change dramatically, your children will grow up seeing their rude behaviour, even if you deflect it or outright leave every time. When I realised that any children I might have would never meet my parents under any circumstances, it was, frankly, a load of my chest.

Venus193

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<snip>

I guess because of this, MIL can't come screaming into our bedroom in the mornings for awhile. I thought about the next time that does happen (maybe a few months down the line) to tell her that she can let me know what time she expects us to come out, so there's no reason to come and fetch us. And that I really don't want her to interrupt our personal time. :D

Honestly, if it were me, I might just let her interrupt my personal time with my husband. Let her get an eyeful... it might be the only thing that stops her from trying to enter again!  >:D

You beat me to that one!

blarg314

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Re: FIL's unwanted opinions about everything, incl. my wed photo (long)
« Reply #68 on: July 02, 2013, 09:20:28 PM »

No. I really, really donít. I told DH yesterday that even if I couldnít stick up for myself, that I would not let them to talk our future children like that, and he agreed. Somehow I feel more strong and capable to defend children I donít even have, rather than myself. But I hope to get there.


One way to help you be active when it comes to standing up to (or avoiding) their nonsens is to think of this as practice for when you have kids.

When you get pregnant, and after you have a baby, you're not going to be at your best - you might be nauseous or tired before, and will likely be tired and overwhelmed and stressed afterwards. This is not a good mental state to be in when learning to stand up to bullies who have trained you to put up with their garbage. And in my experience, having kids makes things worse when it comes to bad family relationships.

So it will save a lot of grief down the line if you learn to stand up to them (or to leave when they get nasty, or to let your DH visit them alone) now, so you can do it automatically when they tell you that your labour was less painful than MIL's broken leg, or that you're being a bad mother because X, or that the baby is ugly/slow and what did you wrong. Or for that matter, when they start telling your *kids* that they are fat crybabies who can't do anything right.

Upon reflecting, I think the main point of conflict is that they are looking to parent me, and I'm not looking for parents to tell me what to do. Don't really know how to resolve that.

That might be half of it. The other half would be that they are terrible parents. The cultural background puts it in some context, but someone can come from a culture that gives elders a lot of power, and where personal comments are considered acceptable, and still be a loving, fair parent. Your inlaws are not. So their behaviour is still abominable, the cultural context mainly tells you that you're going to have an even more uphill battle than otherwise when challenging their behaviour.

Nikko-chan

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<snip>

I guess because of this, MIL can't come screaming into our bedroom in the mornings for awhile. I thought about the next time that does happen (maybe a few months down the line) to tell her that she can let me know what time she expects us to come out, so there's no reason to come and fetch us. And that I really don't want her to interrupt our personal time. :D

Honestly, if it were me, I might just let her interrupt my personal time with my husband. Let her get an eyeful... it might be the only thing that stops her from trying to enter again!  >:D

You beat me to that one!

EvilNikko had the same thought!

Coralreef

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<snip>

I guess because of this, MIL can't come screaming into our bedroom in the mornings for awhile. I thought about the next time that does happen (maybe a few months down the line) to tell her that she can let me know what time she expects us to come out, so there's no reason to come and fetch us. And that I really don't want her to interrupt our personal time. :D

Honestly, if it were me, I might just let her interrupt my personal time with my husband. Let her get an eyeful... it might be the only thing that stops her from trying to enter again!  >:D

You beat me to that one!

EvilNikko had the same thought!

Oh, and it works too!

[/right

White Lotus

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I'd go for the door stop, because I don't play scrabble well in public.

lorelai

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I think you're right about that doorstop :D

Diane AKA Traska

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Are they the type of in-laws to insist you call them "Mom" and "Dad"?  If so, address them by name instead.  Take away a layer of familiarity.  If they don't like that and insist on being called Mr and Mrs Lastname instead, insist upon an equal level of respect.  (Obviously, if they don't want you calling them that, none of this implies)
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lorelai

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DH and I agreed to do the mom/dad thing, but he always forgets and calls my dad "uncle". In our culture it's customary to call elders aunty or uncle. I really want to revert back to aunty/uncle but I don't want to cause WW3.