Author Topic: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house  (Read 25557 times)

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Vall

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #90 on: July 26, 2013, 05:23:29 PM »
I'm so glad that I've never had any in-laws trample boundaries like this.  I've also never had any family that would come close to this.  My dad did do some cleaning occasionally when he came to visit for a few weeks but that was because he was bored.  Plus, he tried to be careful not to move anything from its position.

I wonder if this is just a female thing.  Do FIL's do this too?  Maybe with the garage or sheds?  Has anyone ever heard of a man redecorating someone else's home unasked?  My husband does all of the home decoration here (I'm not interested) but he'd never do it in his daughter's home.

nolechica

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #91 on: July 26, 2013, 05:49:38 PM »
When I was still living at home, in my early 20's, EVERY TIME I went out with friends, I would come home to find my bedroom repainted or redecorated somehow, with the rock posters taken down. Then again, DM used to intercept my mail and throw away any fan club packets I would order (she and I have a better relationship now), so I went and got a post office box.
 She cut a concert shirt into rags because of a word on the back, which was mostly starred out (it was Up All F&%)ing night (something like that) I never really wore the shirt, I kept it because it was my fave band. I had a band autograph my denim jacket, and she washed the autograph out.
 Just a few years ago, I had a tank top that I had made saying Proud To Be A Canadian Redneck Girl, she destroyed that because she didn't like the word redneck! She actually emptied my suitcase from my Nashville trip that year and did my laundry for me.
I had a big mug that said BSers on it, and when we were packing her place for viewings to sell it, she accidentally on purpose dropped it on the tile floor. Didn't apologize, and when I asked what fell, she nonchalantly said just an old mug.

Anyhow, I could regale you with a lot of other stories, but that is what my mom used to be like. Sorry for the thread hijack! Please continue to post!

CRUD MONKEYS! I'd have moved out over half that stuff.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 05:52:58 PM by nolechica »

Jones

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #92 on: July 26, 2013, 05:55:53 PM »
I'm so glad that I've never had any in-laws trample boundaries like this.  I've also never had any family that would come close to this.  My dad did do some cleaning occasionally when he came to visit for a few weeks but that was because he was bored.  Plus, he tried to be careful not to move anything from its position.

I wonder if this is just a female thing.  Do FIL's do this too?  Maybe with the garage or sheds?  Has anyone ever heard of a man redecorating someone else's home unasked?  My husband does all of the home decoration here (I'm not interested) but he'd never do it in his daughter's home.
I had a FIL move in and attempt to rearrange my life...bud can't manage his own, he sure as heck gets no say in mine.

twiggy

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #93 on: July 26, 2013, 06:15:12 PM »
MIL does little stuff like that all the time. She tries so hard to be "helpful" but we don't exactly see eye to eye. For instance, I don't mind a bit of clutter as long as it's organized and I know where it is. So things like toothbrushes/toothpaste and DH's razor can live happily on the bathroom counter. DD's hairbrush and detangling spray as well. MIL sweeps everything into a drawer that I have to root through. .

This last trip she got to work on the front porch. All that was out there was a welcome mat. Now the kids have Adirondack chairs, there's a wind chime, and she put in a planter full of flowers that promptly died (it was the middle of summer and during a massive heat wave). I told her that was going to happen.

Luckily she doesn't get upset when things go back to normal. Within a day and a half I had my bathroom counters back to normal, and when her flowers died, I just kind of shrugged and said I wasn't surprised. There's a shelf and a set of curtains in the back of a closet that she bought over 2 years ago that I just never got around to hanging. Then again, I don't really care a lot about decorating. The only thing that really grated my cheese was when she painted DD's room. It was paint that I had bought and she put up the stickers I had picked out, but she turned the dots into ladybugs and drew their antenna on with permanent marker....on the wood plank wall  >:(
In the United States today, there is a pervasive tendency to treat children as adults, and adults as children.  The options of children are thus steadily expanded, while those of adults are progressively constricted.  The result is unruly children and childish adults.  ~Thomas Szasz

rain

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #94 on: July 27, 2013, 02:28:14 PM »
My story isn't really bad -


after DH & I got married our closet was rather full - _____ decided to come in and rearrange/rehang my clothes in the closet.  I changed things back -

She has always pushed the boundaries  :(  - she always had excuses for what she'd done  (aka "if you hadn't done _____, I wouldn't have done _____."  Or "I'm sorry, but its ok because you did _______.")

and now - I only see her 2-3 x a year, not 2-3 x a week
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whatsanenigma

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #95 on: July 27, 2013, 04:37:04 PM »
Toothpaste does have a best before date; it is usually printed into the crimping at the end of the tube.  And if it has been sitting on the edge of the sink since Ted left, it is very likely beyond that date.  If the cap was on and the date is close, sure, keep it.  But if the cap was off and it was well out of date?  I'd pitch it and replace it.  For a couple of bucks to replace it and leave Ted with a fresh tube?  I think it's worth it.

I agree with this.  I wouldn't randomly throw out a half-used tube of toothpaste that I had actively been using, or if someone who was using it just left for a weekend, but how long has that toothpaste been sitting there?  And it's going to be at least six weeks more.  I think it would be nice to replace it.  Who wants to come home to dried out, gross, toothpaste?  I am thinking he'd prefer to come home to fresh toothpaste along with the fresh housecleaning, etc. Though I think I would go ahead and leave it on the sink where the other one was.

Venus193

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #96 on: July 27, 2013, 09:40:31 PM »
Just be sure to replace it with the same brand and flavor.

JoW

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #97 on: July 27, 2013, 10:05:41 PM »
Its nice to know that my mother isn't the only one who does that sort of thing.  She honestly believes she's helping me when she cleans out my closet, rearranges my cupboards, reads my mail, and goes through my financial records.  And she doesn't understand why she no longer allowed in my home. 

Green Bean

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #98 on: July 27, 2013, 10:40:08 PM »
While he was growing up, DH's grandmother (GIL) was one of those meddlers. She had ideas of how things were supposed to be (mostly rearranging furniture in her kids' homes,...). The story that really bugs me, however, has to do with painting.

GMIL believed that basement floors and walls should be painted. Yes, even unfinished basements! (And when the paint wore out on the floor, it needed to be reprinted. Who goes this?) Anyway, MIL and FIL purchased a new home and GIL was visiting to help out shortly afterwards. GIL said the basement walls needed to be painted, but FIL didn't want to. So what did she do? She rolled paint once or twice on each wall and stopped, knowing FIL would would be compelled to finish the job.

No, FIL did not have a good relationship with his MIL. How'd you guess?

LeveeWoman

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #99 on: July 27, 2013, 11:21:32 PM »
My mother is one of the most soul-crushing narcissists around, but she would never do anything like this to me in any home I've had.


To me, this behavior comes from a kind of person I'd kick out of my life in a nano-second.


jedikaiti

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #100 on: July 27, 2013, 11:32:35 PM »
While he was growing up, DH's grandmother (GIL) was one of those meddlers. She had ideas of how things were supposed to be (mostly rearranging furniture in her kids' homes,...). The story that really bugs me, however, has to do with painting.

GMIL believed that basement floors and walls should be painted. Yes, even unfinished basements! (And when the paint wore out on the floor, it needed to be reprinted. Who goes this?) Anyway, MIL and FIL purchased a new home and GIL was visiting to help out shortly afterwards. GIL said the basement walls needed to be painted, but FIL didn't want to. So what did she do? She rolled paint once or twice on each wall and stopped, knowing FIL would would be compelled to finish the job.

No, FIL did not have a good relationship with his MIL. How'd you guess?

Reminds me of an old family story.

This takes place back when coal or wood fires were the more common method of indoor heating/cooking, and ceiling tended to be darkened by soot.

A door to door salesman came by my great however many times grandmother's house, selling a brush to clean the soot off the ceiling. He started his pitch, then took a quick swipe at the ceiling before g-?-g'ma could stop him. It worked - made a distinct clean spot!

She made him stay and finish the job. Don't know if she bought the brush afterwards, or not.
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alkira6

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #101 on: July 27, 2013, 11:50:15 PM »
Agree the locks would be changed and possibly my living arrangements, if this happened to me.

My mother has the spare key to my place which is under 10 minutes drive from hers. At first, she had some issues respecting my privacy.

She would let herself in (while I was home) without ringing the bell. Once I was sleeping in and woke to the sound of an unknown person moving through my home (not a happy way to wake up). Yes, I did talk with her about this - she just didn't get why it was a problem.   :o
The final straw was when I came home from work late and very very tired and realised that things weren't where I left them (usually very untidily). I'd had a burglary not long before where the first thing I'd noticed was that things weren't where I'd left them. So I thought that had happened again - really freaked out. Took a while for me to realise that my house had been thoroughly tidied (not usually something a burglar would do) and this was my mum at work. (very kind intentions but not great execution).

After a talk that involved some voice raising unfortunately (my hands were still shaking - I probably should have calmed down a bit first), we sorted it out. She's since earned my trust around having a key (still don't think she really gets it but knows it upsets me).

My mom did the bolded on a surprise visit when we lived across state.  She was greeted with a loaded semi automatic with a round in the chamber. We had a nice "discussion" when I realized who it was.

She hasn't done it again.

She also has been traumatized while housesitting for us since we moved closer.  When you are supposed top sleep in the guest room on the brand new bed that we bought just for you, don't go into the master bedroom and rifle in the bedside drawer or look in the large leather case under the bed.  I will laugh at you when you try to bring up the contents and then describe in painful detail what each item can be used for both alone and in conjunction with other items.

TootsNYC

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #102 on: July 28, 2013, 12:07:09 AM »
Toothpaste does have a best before date; it is usually printed into the crimping at the end of the tube.  And if it has been sitting on the edge of the sink since Ted left, it is very likely beyond that date.  If the cap was on and the date is close, sure, keep it.  But if the cap was off and it was well out of date?  I'd pitch it and replace it.  For a couple of bucks to replace it and leave Ted with a fresh tube?  I think it's worth it.

I agree with this.  I wouldn't randomly throw out a half-used tube of toothpaste that I had actively been using, or if someone who was using it just left for a weekend, but how long has that toothpaste been sitting there?  And it's going to be at least six weeks more.  I think it would be nice to replace it.  Who wants to come home to dried out, gross, toothpaste?  I am thinking he'd prefer to come home to fresh toothpaste along with the fresh housecleaning, etc. Though I think I would go ahead and leave it on the sink where the other one was.

The tube of toothpaste in my cabinet has the date of 02/2015. And I've had it easily six months, maybe more.

I think it's ridiculous to toss it--maybe he'd find it comforting to come home to the familiar, slightly crumpled toothpaste, sitting right in the spot where he always leaves it.

VorFemme

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #103 on: July 28, 2013, 12:27:21 AM »
Sweet tasting toothpaste open for months in an empty house?

Dried out and possibly nibbled on by bugs....throw it out and replace with same brand and size.  Bugs don't wash their feet or clean their mouth parts...

I don't like bugs, for the most part.  At least not in my house....
Let sleeping dragons be.......morning breath......need I say more?

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Dear Prudence: My MIL redecorated my house
« Reply #104 on: July 28, 2013, 07:31:31 AM »
Somewhere in the old archives is a story where a woman's new MIL did something similar while they were on their honeymoon. She rearranged the kitchen & bathroom and opened all their wedding presents. Wife was upset, husband thought she was overreacting. She knew he had a large number of women working in his office and suggested he relate the story to them and ask their opinions. Being told by a large number of women that Mommy Dearest was way out of line forced him to face reality and forced him to lay down and enforce some boundaries.

Asharah, I remember that story too. I also recall that the MIL went through the LW's birth control as well!

My advice to the LW in this situation would be the same - tell her boyfriend to ask all his female friends and co-workers their thoughts on his mum's actions.

And if he still refused to think his mum was in the wrong? I'd be breaking it off.