Author Topic: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?  (Read 23677 times)

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TootsNYC

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #60 on: September 27, 2013, 02:44:59 PM »
lady_disdain and everyone who thinks I shouldn't be cooking for the BIL.  I completely agree, but the arrangement was made prior to finding out he misled us about being invited to our house for Christmas.  I have had this argument with my husband repeatedly, to which he says:  "We should honor our commitment.  If we don't, he'll think we're just like he is."  To which I said, "Who cares what he thinks?  He willfully misled us!  No one invited him to our house."  I honestly don't understand my husband's apparent apprehension to displease him.  It's sad to me, very sad.

Your DH just calls him up and says, " Change of plan! Let's you and me go to a restaurant--my treat."

All taken care of.

nothing more needs to be said.

If BIL asks "why not the house, what about Susan," DH says, "I just thought this would be better."

This is acceptable for a host to do, in terms of Etiquette (which is what this board is about).

Not everything he knows needs to come out of his mouth in words!!

For that matter, you can simply make some food (as a favor to your husband), and then have plans to be elsewhere. This is a tiny bit sketchier, since you technically had "previous plans" to honor him, but at this point, I'll give you a pass.

In fact, if your DH won't go along with a change of venue, I would suggest that this is what you do.

Susan45

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #61 on: September 27, 2013, 02:48:00 PM »
Well, I can't believe I did this but - BIL was due to see DH tonight and I invited him up to the house.  When he came in, I confronted him about lying about not getting invited.  He couldn't believe it.  He apologized all over the place.

My husband was so angry while BIL was on the way up.  He didn't want me to do that.

I told BIL:  "You don't do that to someone!"

My last words to the BIL were:  "LEAVE. NOW." 

I was furious the more I thought about it and how things have been and what I've been tolerating.

I am still shaking from the confrontation.  I couldn't have rested otherwise though.  He tried to act so shocked and contrite which I know is an act.

But at least I am not having to cater to him this year.  Thanks everyone. 

Edit:  When BIL came in, I asked him to have a seat and said:  "Who invited you to Christmas dinner this year?"

BIL:  No one.

I looked astounded, because of the former dodge that alluded to the fact that he'd implied he was invited - which DH bought into thoroughly.  It had even had me doubting myself earlier this week.

When BIL said "No one."  I lit into him.  I couldn't help myself.  I said:  "You don't do people like that!  Who do you think you are?  Do you have any idea  or care how hard it is to cook a Christmas dinner?"  he mumbled something.  I assertively told him to speak up! 

Anyway, I finally stood up to him and let him know I wasn't going to be his hostess after abusing me.  Thanks so much everyone.  I would have never done that without having read all your posts.  I was a little harsh, I felt it was righteous anger.  My gut would not let me rest until I let him know I wasn't standing for that.  I knew that much even before my post today.  You all helped me formulate it.  Thanks again.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2013, 02:52:29 PM by Susan45 »

Shoo

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #62 on: September 27, 2013, 02:54:42 PM »
So, you're NOT cooking him a birthday dinner or any other dinner, right?  I can't tell precisely from your update.


LeveeWoman

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #63 on: September 27, 2013, 02:58:11 PM »
Well, I can't believe I did this but - BIL was due to see DH tonight and I invited him up to the house.  When he came in, I confronted him about lying about not getting invited.  He couldn't believe it.  He apologized all over the place.

My husband was so angry while BIL was on the way up.  He didn't want me to do that.

I told BIL:  "You don't do that to someone!"

My last words to the BIL were:  "LEAVE. NOW." 

I was furious the more I thought about it and how things have been and what I've been tolerating.

I am still shaking from the confrontation.  I couldn't have rested otherwise though.  He tried to act so shocked and contrite which I know is an act.

But at least I am not having to cater to him this year.  Thanks everyone. 

Edit:  When BIL came in, I asked him to have a seat and said:  "Who invited you to Christmas dinner this year?"

BIL:  No one.

I looked astounded, because of the former dodge that alluded to the fact that he'd implied he was invited - which DH bought into thoroughly.  It had even had me doubting myself earlier this week.

When BIL said "No one."  I lit into him.  I couldn't help myself.  I said:  "You don't do people like that!  Who do you think you are?  Do you have any idea  or care how hard it is to cook a Christmas dinner?"  he mumbled something.  I assertively told him to speak up! 

Anyway, I finally stood up to him and let him know I wasn't going to be his hostess after abusing me.  Thanks so much everyone.  I would have never done that without having read all your posts.  I was a little harsh, I felt it was righteous anger.  My gut would not let me rest until I let him know I wasn't standing for that.  I knew that much even before my post today.  You all helped me formulate it.  Thanks again.

Ligting into someone is not always the best way to go, but after years and years of his abusive nonsense, I don't blame you. Good for you for standing up for yourself!!!

Susan45

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #64 on: September 27, 2013, 02:59:03 PM »
My husband will try to talk me into still doing his birthday dinner, I guess, but I'm not going to.  Something about a few comments I read that said I shouldn't have to cook for someone who has been mean to me and abused me.  He was so fake around my husband.  I am not putting up with that anymore.  I can't believe what I took off that person.  All because I love my DH and didn't want to make waves.  Come what may, I feel so good about having confronted him just now.  I don't care what he thinks of me.  I couldn't care less.

Susan45

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #65 on: September 27, 2013, 03:01:40 PM »
I know, LeveeWoman.  But bad enough to insult someone every chance he got for years, but then to lie and worm his way into someone's house for a Christmas meal as well?  I had reached my limit.  I was never brought up to let go like that but I just had to put a stop to it. 

I hope he never wants to come around here again.  What he did I would never dream of doing to a person.  It's just so underhanded.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2013, 04:44:51 PM by Susan45 »

SoCalVal

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #66 on: September 27, 2013, 03:03:42 PM »
You know, OP, what I can't understand is why if you two are going to distance yourselves from your BIL you have to wait a few years to do it. And why do you have to do his birthday dinner and Christmas dinner this year? What is better about later than now? If you are going to distance yourselves, time will not make it better. It won't make your BIL feel better about it. It won't make your DH feel better about it. It certainly won't make you feel better about it. What exactly then is the reason for wanting to wait? Because your DH thinks your BIL won't think you are scared of him? That makes no sense to me. Time won't make him change what he thinks (if he does indeed think that).

Were it me I wouldn't be around BIL at all. Your DH's thinking is ridiculous. Unpleasant interactions should be stopped as soon as possible rather than eased off. More time just entrenches the behavior. And he's had five years now to "ease" off. Cancel your participation in the dinner and cancel Christmas plans. If your DH wants to maintain the relationship he can. You just won't be part of it.

To me, the reason this is happening this way is because it's really not going to happen at all.  Cook BIL's birthday dinner this year and spend Christmas and things will change next year?  Uh uh.  I don't trust this at all.  How many times have we experienced someone saying "Let it go this time, and we'll address it next time" or something similar and the next time happens with nothing changing?  The time is NOW to stop.

And count me in on really not getting the whole OP must be there so BIL doesn't think she's afraid of him.  Frankly, after telling DH that she's not afraid of BIL, I'd stop spending any more time with him.  Who cares what BIL thinks, seriously???

And, to me, this sounds like another case of the squeakiest wheel getting what he/she wants.  Unless OP puts her foot down and lets the possible drama ensue, nothing is going to change.



EMuir

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #67 on: September 27, 2013, 03:10:44 PM »
I am very glad you confronted him. Of course your husband said "just two more events", it allowed him to avoid confrontation for a few months and when that was up, maybe you'd have forgotten about it.  Good for you for taking a stand.  You can't control your husband, you can only control yourself, and you have chosen to not be bullied anymore.

SoCalVal

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #68 on: September 27, 2013, 03:11:32 PM »
Well, I can't believe I did this but - BIL was due to see DH tonight and I invited him up to the house.  When he came in, I confronted him about lying about not getting invited.  He couldn't believe it.  He apologized all over the place.

My husband was so angry while BIL was on the way up.  He didn't want me to do that.

I told BIL:  "You don't do that to someone!"

My last words to the BIL were:  "LEAVE. NOW." 

I was furious the more I thought about it and how things have been and what I've been tolerating.

I am still shaking from the confrontation.  I couldn't have rested otherwise though.  He tried to act so shocked and contrite which I know is an act.

But at least I am not having to cater to him this year.  Thanks everyone. 

Edit:  When BIL came in, I asked him to have a seat and said:  "Who invited you to Christmas dinner this year?"

BIL:  No one.

I looked astounded, because of the former dodge that alluded to the fact that he'd implied he was invited - which DH bought into thoroughly.  It had even had me doubting myself earlier this week.

When BIL said "No one."  I lit into him.  I couldn't help myself.  I said:  "You don't do people like that!  Who do you think you are?  Do you have any idea  or care how hard it is to cook a Christmas dinner?"  he mumbled something.  I assertively told him to speak up! 

Anyway, I finally stood up to him and let him know I wasn't going to be his hostess after abusing me.  Thanks so much everyone.  I would have never done that without having read all your posts.  I was a little harsh, I felt it was righteous anger.  My gut would not let me rest until I let him know I wasn't standing for that.  I knew that much even before my post today.  You all helped me formulate it.  Thanks again.

Good for you!  I was so angry on your behalf when I read the initial post that I couldn't even wait until I'd read all of the thread and your updates before posting.



SoCalVal

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #69 on: September 27, 2013, 03:15:25 PM »
My husband will try to talk me into still doing his birthday dinner, I guess, but I'm not going to.  Something about a few comments I read that said I shouldn't have to cook for someone who has been mean to me and abused me.  He was so fake around my husband.  I am not putting up with that anymore.  I can't believe what I took off that person.  All because I love my DH and didn't want to make waves.  Come what may, I feel so good about having confronted him just now.  I don't care what he thinks of me.  I couldn't care less.

Again, good for you.

What is up with your husband?  We read that you love your husband, but how much does he love YOU that he would try to make you do this still???  Is your husband so afraid of your BIL that he won't do anything that will displease him and, really, risk his marriage?



Amara

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #70 on: September 27, 2013, 03:22:04 PM »
Pat yourself on the back, OP! Forcing your BIL to confront his own lie was good. At least he knows you have had it. That's not to say I don't think he'll try his antics again and again, and that your DH won't try to persuade you to put up with them, but I do think you have taken the hardest step in what will be the journey to changing this dysfunctional situation.

AnnaJane

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #71 on: September 27, 2013, 03:47:31 PM »
Good for you, OP! You may be the first person in the entire family to call out BIL for his behaviour. Hopefully, your DH noticed that the world didn't actually end when BIL didn't get his own way.

Midnight Kitty

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #72 on: September 27, 2013, 03:48:17 PM »
Just say "no."  It will get easier with time.  Your BIL is toxic.  Avoid him.  If your DH enjoys toxicity, let him deal with his brother.  Don't cook a birthday dinner for him.  I only cook for people I want to nurture.  What I would want to put in BIL's meal falls under the heading of "retaliatory rudeness" and I'm just not gonna go there.

Your DH has a noodle-spine.  If he wants to placate his bully brother, that's his choice.  5 years is enough.  You are not obligated to put up with this anymore.  You and your DH can visit his parents graves together whenever you want.  You don't need to go there with a bully brother.  Let him pay his own respects.

This man is a poster child for the "cut direct."  I would be hard put not to get my last licks in with "I wouldn't spit on you if you were on fire." >:D
"The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit.  The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are."

Marcus Aurelius

poundcake

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #73 on: September 27, 2013, 03:53:23 PM »
Sounds like it's time for one of these confrontations with your husband next.

Good on you, OP. I completely understand why you did this, too.

LEMon

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Re: Mean-spirited, devious, brother-in-law -- must I even respond to him?
« Reply #74 on: September 27, 2013, 03:58:44 PM »
The next challenge will be to stand firm.  Decide to withstand the pressure that will come to play nice.  I suspect DH is going to be very uncomfortable and try to negotiate with you.

I would make it clear what my boundaries are to DH.  "I will do this.  I will not do that."  And stand firm.  We call it having a 'shiny steel backbone'.

I would be making it clear he can take his brother out for the birthday dinner if he wants, and that there will be no Christmas dinner for BIL that you will be attending.