Author Topic: yet another mother-in-law issue  (Read 7809 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

padua

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 524
yet another mother-in-law issue
« on: August 05, 2013, 11:56:51 AM »
i'm relieved to know i'm not the only one having mother-in-law issues. i've posted on here several times before about my mother-in-law and have received some wonderful words of wisdom. most of our conflict began around planning my wedding. now i've had a couple of kids, the issues continue to stack up.

i only wanted to focus what's impacting me today.

first off, i have to say that i managed to get my husband to move a couple thousand miles away so i could have a chance to be close to my family for a change. the move was difficult, but well worth it. in the weeks leading up to the move, i was repeatedly harassed by my MIL- texts saying i was evil, phone calls calling me the devil, accusations that i belonged to an evil cult and simply used my husband as a sperm bank, and the ever-blessed silent treatment. we made it, though, and seeing her on holidays and a few times in between has been an improvement (although the last time i saw her she said i needed to decide where my family was going to settle because a) she needed to decide where she was going to move to when she retires next year and b) my husband will leave me if i don't).

two things yesterday has been making it difficult to maintain my peace. now understand that i'm suspecting (and hoping, because what decent human being behaves this way) she may not be well. but it's difficult to ignore. if the etiquette is to continue pretending nothing is happening, i'll suck it up and keep on keep on. but man, it gets under my skin.

first of all, there was a huge debate over what to name my son (although we've only been married almost-three years, we've had two children in the meantime). she didn't like the name i chose and adamently stated i was not to name him that. my husband and i agreed that we would name the child, not her, and while i got the first name he would get the middle. after many hours of debate, we agreed on a first name (three days after my son was born). it was a name i had picked out and i was glad he was okay with it. he stated he wanted to use his grandfather's first name as the middle name for our child. i was a little frustrated as he adamently refused to allow me to use my grandfather's name (it had been my idea first to do this and his mother refused as she hated the name), but he conceded to my first choice, i'd just undergone 30 hours of labor followed up by a c-section, and i was exhausted (understated). plus it was a nice gesture wanting to connect with his grandfather like that.

well, yesterday i found out he would never have chosen the name if his mother hadn't insisted on it. so in a conversation between him and her, she decided on a name for our baby. ooo- i'm getting steamed up just thinking about it. i'm pretty sure i need to let that one go and i will. it's just fresh.

the second incident- well, about a month ago i had a set of blocks custom ordered for her. they're beautiful- they're children's blocks but has pictures of the kids fused into the sides. they're very tasteful and a unique gift. she's always asking for more pictures of the kids so i thought this could be a good way to let her show them off. i found out yesterday while overhearing the conversation she was having with my husband that yes, she did receive them. and her father was really enjoying them. she then disclosed that she had given the block set away to her father.

hm.

do i keep trying? at what point do i get to 'give up' trying to (one-sidedly) maintain a relationship? do i pretend as if i didn't overhear the conversation (he had her on speakerphone so she could talk with our son)? my husband just shrugged it off. she's coming to visit in a month and is it appropriate to be cool and reserved? am i expected to be falsely warm and welcoming? i would appreciate any words of wisdom offered.

Cherry91

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 684
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2013, 12:09:54 PM »
This woman referred to you as the devil, evil and a cultist. She should thank her lucky stars she's even allowed to communicate with your children, let alone enter your household.

I say be cool and distant, but completely polite so she can't feel vindicated about her bad opinion of you. This woman has treated you horribly - you are under no obligation to fake any delight at her visit.

LeveeWoman

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4187
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2013, 12:12:54 PM »
I'd cut this horrid person off forever.

Zizi-K

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 739
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2013, 12:20:20 PM »
It sounds to me like the problem is with the hubs and not with the crazy MIL. (She's clearly nuts, no doubt.) It sounds like he's taking her side over yours, or being unduly influenced by her whispering in his ear. I would also be super upset if right after I had a difficult birth I had to debate about the name only to find out that he was fighting for her preference and not his own. My advice: get thee to couple's counseling and have your husband cut the cord.

In the near term: be distant and cool if that is your natural inclination. You don't like her, she clearly doesn't like you - why pretend otherwise?

medowynd

  • Jr. Member
  • *
  • Posts: 91
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2013, 12:21:34 PM »
I legally changed my daughter's middle name.  The court order cost $30 and is attached with her birth certificate.  This was done over thirty years ago and she was three years old.  Her original middle name, was my mother-in-law's first name.  The woman hated me with a passion and had no problem informing family and friends of what a lowlife I was.  They continued to refer to my daughter with the original middle name. Everyone else knows my daughter by her new middle name.

Oh Joy

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1370
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2013, 01:49:03 PM »
Quick question: do you think she regifted the blocks in a 'Look at these beautiful blocks I had made for you with pictures of your namesake?  Aren't I wonderful?' kind of way, or do you think it was in a 'How do I get rid of this junk?' kind of way?

heartmug

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2349
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2013, 01:52:48 PM »
Let your Dh pick out gifts for her for EVERY occasion from now on.  If he forgets a birthday, holiday, etc. oh well.  She wants pictures?  Ask DH.  He gets to deal with her and you get some peace.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2013, 12:30:19 PM by heartmug »
One option in a tug of war with someone is just to drop the rope.

JoyinVirginia

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6071
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2013, 01:53:39 PM »
Perfectly fine to be cool and reserved. Perfectly fine to insist she not stay in your house, won't she be more comfortable in a hotel. Perfectly fine to inform your dh you want him to call an attorney to to find out how to change name of your child.
Also perfectly fine to ask mil to leave your home if she becomes verbally abusive to you in your home

SPuck

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 985
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2013, 02:06:04 PM »
Tasryn said it best in another thread. It's better to not have such a manipulative, controlling and boundary disrespecting person in your life.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2013, 02:10:13 PM by SPuck »

Girlie

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 520
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2013, 04:22:40 PM »
Yep. This woman would be out of my life as of, like yesterday. Or last year. Or rather, almost-three years ago.

weeblewobble

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 3341
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2013, 04:42:09 PM »
What did your husband say in response to the devil/evil/cultist texts?  Or the threat that he would leave you?  Because those are issues HE should be responding to, not you.

padua

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 524
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2013, 06:01:24 PM »
It sounds to me like the problem is with the hubs and not with the crazy MIL. (She's clearly nuts, no doubt.) It sounds like he's taking her side over yours, or being unduly influenced by her whispering in his ear. I would also be super upset if right after I had a difficult birth I had to debate about the name only to find out that he was fighting for her preference and not his own. My advice: get thee to couple's counseling and have your husband cut the cord.

In the near term: be distant and cool if that is your natural inclination. You don't like her, she clearly doesn't like you - why pretend otherwise?

we've done some counseling, which helped. he's more apathetic- he's the only child of a single parent and is pretty good at filtering out what she's saying. the name thing took me off guard- he'll usually just say 'okay' and not follow through with her. this time it seems as if he just went the path of least resistance. he doesn't typically get caught up in whatever she's cooking up, which is why it really threw me through a loop. to say i was shocked is really an understatement as it's really unlike him.

padua

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 524
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2013, 06:02:44 PM »
I legally changed my daughter's middle name.  The court order cost $30 and is attached with her birth certificate.  This was done over thirty years ago and she was three years old.  Her original middle name, was my mother-in-law's first name.  The woman hated me with a passion and had no problem informing family and friends of what a lowlife I was.  They continued to refer to my daughter with the original middle name. Everyone else knows my daughter by her new middle name.

i've thought of this, but because he chose his grandfather's name, that would be getting the rest of his family up in arms and wouldn't impact my MIL much. the rest of his family are really kind, wonderful people and it would be a shame to cut them off for what she's done.

padua

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 524
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2013, 06:07:03 PM »
Quick question: do you think she regifted the blocks in a 'Look at these beautiful blocks I had made for you with pictures of your namesake?  Aren't I wonderful?' kind of way, or do you think it was in a 'How do I get rid of this junk?' kind of way?

i've been thinking about it being the former. how would she have presented them to him? "oh-, padua gave these to me but i don't want them, so i'm going to gift them to you instead"? i have no idea how one could pass on such a personal gift without implying it came from them. but then i tell myself i gave them to her so she's free to do whatever she wants with them. so was it thoughtlessness? distaste? or a slap in the face by being so open and blunt about it? the speculation has been driving me crazy so i'm trying to avoid thinking about it.

i think from now on i'll just stick with what heartmug suggested:
"Let your Dh pick out gifts for her for EVERY occasion from now on.  If he forgets a birthday, holiday, etc. oh well.  She wants picks?  Ask DH.  He gets to deal with her and you get some peace."

or am i obligated to get her a gift if she gives me something?

padua

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 524
Re: yet another mother-in-law issue
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2013, 06:10:08 PM »
What did your husband say in response to the devil/evil/cultist texts?  Or the threat that he would leave you?  Because those are issues HE should be responding to, not you.

he just shakes his head and says "you know she's crazy, so don't worry about it so much." i'm quite unused to this sort of behavior while he's learned to ignore it while growing up. i think (after considering the feedback) at this point it would best to be cool and reserved and expect the worst. part of the struggles i've been having is trying to make the relationship better. i can't do that on my own, so a bit of emotional distance (coupled with the physical distance) might be what's needed. and hope she's not seriously thinking of moving out here.