Author Topic: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling  (Read 22692 times)

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Redneck Gravy

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #30 on: August 01, 2013, 05:19:00 PM »
From cmw

3. Once you've calmed down and things are smoothed over, sit down with them together and calmly discuss things. Explain to them that this is your home and while you appreciate their offers of help, you would prefer to weigh all of your options and make plans based on what is best for your home and family. If they still don't get it, offer to come redecorate their house and then when they decline, tell them that when they come in and do things like they did, it feels like they made the offer, you declined and they did it anyway, and ask them how they would feel if you still came in and redecorated everything without their permission.

This is good stuff too! 

bopper

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #31 on: August 01, 2013, 05:34:10 PM »
I would turn down all further offers of help.
I would not invite them to my home.
I would attend the christening but feel too ill for the lunch afterwards.

JoyinVirginia

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #32 on: August 01, 2013, 06:02:13 PM »
I would turn down all further offers of help.
I would not invite them to my home.
I would attend the christening but feel too ill for the lunch afterwards.
Or, if you attend the lunch, don't sit with them. So they expect it? Big whoop. Sit where you please. Next to people you like.

Kiwichick

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #33 on: August 01, 2013, 06:59:00 PM »
I'd ring SIL and say 'So, MIL tells me you want to apologise for destroying my garden.' Then just wait.

JenJay

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #34 on: August 01, 2013, 07:10:31 PM »
I'd ring SIL and say 'So, MIL tells me you want to apologise for destroying my garden.' Then just wait.

Oooh I like that!

jedikaiti

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #35 on: August 01, 2013, 07:31:35 PM »
I'd ring SIL and say 'So, MIL tells me you want to apologise for destroying my garden that my Mother and Aunt travelled so far and went to so much effort to plant for me while I was undergoing my kidney transplant..' Then just wait.

Oooh I like that!

Go ahead and lay on the guilt.
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Erich L-ster

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #36 on: August 01, 2013, 07:37:19 PM »
With regard to "They're just plants"; when plants are killed, they're dead. It's not as if she broke a vase and it can be glued or you can buy a replica. Plants take time to get established. You can't buy time back. Even if she found the same type of plant at the same stage of maturity (which she should do anyway) the plants won't be established with their roots spread until more time passes.

GrammarNerd

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #37 on: August 01, 2013, 08:49:47 PM »
One of the basic rules I TRY to teach my kids is that "if it's not yours, you keep your hands off of it."  This is a basic rule for KIDS.  SIL, as an adult, should have this down pat.  Emphasis on SHOULD.

I fear, OP, that if you say anything to SIL, she's going to go with the "I was only trying to HEEELLLLLLPPPPP" line (whine) and go all dramatic martyr on you, like YOU are wronging HER for daring to be mad at what she did.  And at that point, you just have to thicken up that skin and say icily, "I never asked for your help.  I never wanted your help.  And the fact is that you DIDN'T help.  You didn't know anything about the area in which you tried to 'help', and you destroyed something precious to me.  You just didn't CARE." 

And if she says she 'didn't know' how precious they were (as if that absolves her), you can always go back to the fact of, "but you didn't ask.  You didn't CARE to ask or make sure that you knew what you were doing.  You just came in and destroyed my belongings.  And do you realize how thoroughly ridiculous that sounds as an excuse?  What do you expect me to do....go through each and every item in my home and tell you how important it is to me, just so you don't destroy anything else?  Sheesh!"

And I would CERTAINLY ask her to reimburse you for the plants.  Tell her that if she's really sorry, there shouldn't be any issue with this.  And even if she's not sorry, she still has the obligation to reimburse you.  (And if you want to go one better, tell her that you'll be hiring professional landscapers to undo her mess, and she'll be the one receiving the bill.  Either that, or she can buy you new plants and buy the plane tickets for your mom to visit you and replant the plants.  Personally, I think you should throw this little nugget out there.  Make her sweat it.  Make it hurt for her.  She needs to be uncomfortable, and THAT is the only thing that will make an impression.)

BarensMom

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #38 on: August 02, 2013, 01:06:21 PM »
I've said this before and I'll reiterate:  Why do these people (men and women) think that their FOO is more important than the person they took legal (and in some cases, sacred) vows to honor, cherish, obey and FORSAKE ALL OTHERS? 

 >:D Personally, I'd rather keep the person who is in the same environment happy, if only because the potential for daily doses of misery is much higher than a FOO member who doesn't have access to my food, toiletries, and clothing. >:D

JeanFromBNA

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #39 on: August 02, 2013, 03:10:02 PM »
I'd ring SIL and say 'So, MIL tells me you want to apologise for destroying my garden that my Mother and Aunt travelled so far and went to so much effort to plant for me while I was undergoing my kidney transplant..' Then just wait.

Oooh I like that!

Go ahead and lay on the guilt.

I like it, too.  I would add, "I would like you to pay for their replacement.  My mother will be coming over on (date) and I would like to have them for her to re-plant then."  If your Mom is not local, you should ask DH to do this on her behalf.  This reinforces the consequence of their actions in a way that word alone will not.  I also think that you would feel much better if the plants were replaced, both physically and mentally.

cattlekid

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #40 on: August 02, 2013, 03:30:33 PM »
I like the ideas about having SIL pay for and replant the plants.  Every day when I pull out of the driveway on the way to work or pull in the driveway on the way home, I see the bare flowerbed and it sends my blood pressure into the stratosphere.  Periwinkle isn't available again until next spring, so I'm going to have to find something of equivalent value for her to put in the ground until next spring when periwinkle is available again and she can pay for replacements and I can plant them then. 

Of course, it's all pie in the sky anyhow because I'm sure she won't do this for me, but it will make me feel better to ask.  I like the PP's ideas of really making it hurt.  I tend to play down my feelings so I really need to turn it up a few notches on this one without devolving into hysterics like I can sometimes do.

TootsNYC

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #41 on: August 02, 2013, 03:52:13 PM »
Even if the thing with SIL doesn't work out, I would encourage you to do something in that spot, so you don't have that little dose of bad feeling each time.


Also--DO give your SIL a little space in which to genuinely apologize. If people feel attacked, they don't feel like apologizing.

So I wouldn't actually suggest you call up and ask for an apology. That's not what you want. It won't make you feel that much better--and you're not likely to get it.

The ideal would be for your DH to stop saying "they're just plants," and go to his sis and say, "I don't think you realize that it's not *just* that you messed with our stuff without permission, etc. It's also that the thing you destroyed and treated like garbage is irreplaceable and had a huge emotional meaning. It's the plants that her mom and aunt planted for her during the kidney thing.
    "This is really a bigger deal than you think. She's really hurt. This is really upsetting for her. It would probably help a lot if you could apologize sincerely."

And then leave it. And see what happens.

I think if you call her up and ask for an apology, esp. since you KNOW that MIL did not tell you she was ready to give you one, you are only going to get a bunch of defensiveness. It's a very human reaction. Don't trigger it.

Petticoats

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #42 on: August 02, 2013, 03:55:44 PM »
The ideal would be for your DH to stop saying "they're just plants," and go to his sis and say, "I don't think you realize that it's not *just* that you messed with our stuff without permission, etc. It's also that the thing you destroyed and treated like garbage is irreplaceable and had a huge emotional meaning. It's the plants that her mom and aunt planted for her during the kidney thing."

Ah, but he has to come to understand this himself before he can impress it upon SIL. And it sounds like he doesn't get it at all.

gramma dishes

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #43 on: August 02, 2013, 04:02:03 PM »

...   The ideal would be for your DH to stop saying "they're just plants," and go to his sis and say, "I don't think you realize that it's not *just* that you messed with our stuff without permission, etc. It's also that the thing you destroyed and treated like garbage is irreplaceable and had a huge emotional meaning. It's the plants that her mom and aunt planted for her during the kidney thing.
    "This is really a bigger deal than you think. She's really hurt. This is really upsetting for her. It would probably help a lot if you could apologize sincerely."

And then leave it. And see what happens.

I like Toots' words and agree that your asking for an apology will not have the desired effect for exactly the reasons Toots mentions.  Not only that, but if even after you ask for an apology she still does not apologize, you're going to be just that much more angry and frustrated. 

In addition to that, since part of the problem is that even your husband doesn't seem to understand why you're so upset, this should clue him in too and make him realize that certain actions have serious and lasting repercussions.  Besides, they're his family, so he's the one who should handle it.  This is your DH's job now to request an apology to you, but it's still likely that it won't happen.  At least though it might make you feel like at last he 'gets it' and will stand up for you and that would, I think, make you feel better -- at least toward him! 


LifeOnPluto

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Re: S/O: MIL redecorating....SIL and boundary trampling
« Reply #44 on: August 03, 2013, 03:06:52 AM »
I would turn down all further offers of help.
I would not invite them to my home.
I would attend the christening but feel too ill for the lunch afterwards.
Or, if you attend the lunch, don't sit with them. So they expect it? Big whoop. Sit where you please. Next to people you like.

Unfortunately, this isn't going to work if there is planned seating, and the OP is seated with her in-laws.

OP, is there any way you can find out in advance if there is going to be planned seating? If not, then go to the lunch, and don't sit with them.

If there is no way of asking politely about the seating arrangements, and you suspect you'll be seated with your in-laws, I would attend the christening, but decline the lunch part.

And I agree that you should have a conversation (at some point) with your SIL. I agree with PPs who say it would be a bad idea to ask upfront for an apology. But I think you should tell your SIL, in no uncertain terms, that you feel VERY hurt and offended that she pulled up your flowers without permission. No doubt she'll give you the "but I was only trying to heeeeeelp" line. In that case, keep on repeating "Yes, but can you understand that your actions - well intentioned or not - resulted in something very valuable to me being destroyed?"

I would also ask her to reimburse me the cost of the flowers. Eg "SIL, the flowers cost $x. I'd appreciate it if you would reimburse me this amount. You can pay me back [insert most convenient method for you]".

If she refuses, ask her "Am I correct in understanding that you're not going to pay for my property, which you destroyed?"