Author Topic: Meeting the In-Laws  (Read 10613 times)

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Noelle

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Meeting the In-Laws
« on: September 02, 2010, 12:13:46 AM »
I met my husband when I was only 19.  We had been dating for a few weeks when he brought me home to meet his parents.  I wasn't all that nervous- I am naturally outgoing and had no trouble carrying on conversations with my friends' and former dates' parents.  The meeting started out as I'd expected.  They were very nice; asking about my family, what I was studying in college, etc.  At some point, my (now) husband and his father went into another room leaving me to chat with his mother.  I don't remember what we were talking about, but out of nowhere she asked me if I had ever thought about getting breast reduction surgery.  You could have knocked me over with a feather.  I wish I had said, "Why would I want to do that?"  As it was, I sat there with my mouth hanging open for what seemed like an eternity while possible responses raced through my mind, none of them particularly polite.  In the end, I think all I said was, "No I haven't."  I've wondered for years if there would have been a more appropriate response to politely convey my shock and outrage at being asked such a personal question.  (She has brought up the subject a time or two since then.  I don't even dignify it with a response- I just change the subject.)

The truth is, she was not the first (and certainly not the last) to make incredibly rude comments regarding the size of my bust line.  I do tend to carry my weight in my chest- most women would be thrilled to have that problem!  I am amazed at the number of total strangers who think it appropriate to make remarks about my body.  One simply asked me, "What is it like to have huge boobs?"  (I wanted to ask what it's like to have a tiny brain.)  One acquaintance made the assumption for years that I was planning on having reduction surgery when I was done having children.  I was particularly amazed by her insensitive comments, considering she is one of the unfortunate people who carry their weight in their backsides.  I would never ask her if she was planning liposuction to get rid of that huge butt!  A good friend was apparently under the same assumption.  Being closer to her, and more comfortable speaking my mind, I said to her what I have wanted to say to all the insensitive people over the years.  She was talking about my "upcoming surgery" like it was all planned, when I interrupted her and asked, "Are they bothering you?"  She looked surprised and said "No..."  I stated, "Well they aren't bothering me either, and I'm not planning on having any surgery!"  At least she had the decency to apologize.

I've never forgotten that first meeting with my mother-in-law.  Ten years later, we have a wonderful relationship and are very close.  While I wish I could have come up with the perfect response, I'm glad that I squelched the impulse to say the two things that came to mind.  The first response to leap into my mind was "Why would I get rid of them- your son loves them!"  The second was to ask if she was going to do anything about the big hump on her back.  For you see, she is a hunchback.  Has been for years.  She's on disability, can't stand up straight, has multiple rods in her spine, and has a hump rising off her back about six inches high.  You'd think she would know what it's like to have a physical trait that you don't really want people making rude comments about.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2010, 11:47:11 PM by Noelle »

Amava

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2010, 12:18:45 AM »
I salute you for remaining polite when faced with such rudeness.

I actually think your matter-of-fact, calm "No, I haven't" was a perfectly fine response.

arkzak

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2010, 05:44:48 PM »
I agree. I think you handled it with grace and poise. It was still a horribly inappropriate question, particularly for a first meeting!

hobish

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2010, 05:51:43 PM »

Whoa! There's a trial by fire. I think you handled it well, from the sounds of it.

P.S. Welcome aboard.
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Lisbeth

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2010, 06:00:06 PM »
What a start to get off to.  You handled her well, especially if she's now a close friend.
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Noelle

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2010, 10:48:55 PM »
Thank you all for your reassurance.  I still wish I could have said something that would have kept the subject from coming up again, but I am glad I didn't give her something equally rude to remember our first meeting by!

P.S. Thank you, hobish!  I love this site.

Minmom3

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2010, 12:18:22 AM »
There IS something to be said for being so incredulous you're speechless!  ::)
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Emmy

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2010, 08:24:21 AM »
It can be hard to come up with a polite, but appropriate answer when confronted with such an intrusive and unexpected question like that.  I do think remaining silent if you don't have polite words to answer the question is a thousand times better than saying what you really want to say.  Although your FMIL was rude and probably deserved a rude answer in return for asking such a question, you did the right thing by taking the high road.  You may not have her as such a close friend today if you answered her question rudely.

I've been in similar situations and do wish I had a 'perfect' response, however, I was glad I remained silent and not stooped to their level by responding in an equally rude way.

Oxymoroness

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2010, 08:35:41 AM »
Thank you all for your reassurance.  I still wish I could have said something that would have kept the subject from coming up again, but I am glad I didn't give her something equally rude to remember our first meeting by!

P.S. Thank you, hobish!  I love this site.

From my experience, (I'm also well endowded) there isn't a way to keep it up from
 coming up again. For some reason, it's a subject that for some people is impossible to let go of. The best I can come up with is to develop a Teflon skin and not let the comments penetrate. Snappy combacks as much fun as they are, rarely make the conversation take a healthy turn.

squashedfrog

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2010, 08:23:04 AM »
What the????  Crikey!   Thats so from left side its untrue!    :o

Honey, even if a lady had jubblies so big she had to carry them around in a wheel barrow, its just a bizarre thing to ever suggest to anyone, especially if you have only just met!  Its almost akin you go up to someone and say, "I've noticed you bottom is very large, you must have trouble fitting into chairs, have you considered lipo?"

Very well handled on your part, I dont think I could have been that graceful!   :D


CinnamonGirl

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2010, 11:40:17 PM »
 The first response to leap into my mind was "Why would I get rid of them- your son loves them!"
Ha, I have to admit that was the first thing I thought of too!

Ms_Shell

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Re: Meeting the In-Laws
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2010, 12:58:14 AM »

I was particularly amazed by her insensitive comments, considering she is one of the unfortunate people who carry their weight in their backsides.  I would never ask her if she was planning liposuction to get rid of that huge butt!  


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