Hurt by my in-laws.

ilovepinkMay 18, 2010

This is such a long story. I have a 2 and a half year old. Since the day our child was born my in-laws have been the type of grandparents that will offer to babysitte on say a Tuesday at six p.m. for noon the next day. I don't know about most mothers but I have my weeks planned in advance. I have come to rely on a nanny for our help which has been fine. My in-laws apparently have been upset about this. My MIL will send emails saying she wants to take our child for the day and get her out of our house from her comfort zone. Our daughter doesn't know her grandparents because when they do visit they will visit maybe once a month (if that) for an hour or two at most. They are retired and very busy and we respect that. But, I am not going to ask them to take our child to their house for a day or weekend when they don't even have a crib or play pen at their house. It's kind of an odd situation.

Recently three people in our family have let us know that my MIL has been talking about us. Mostly me. She has been painting me as a horrible DIL and mother. She has made it sound that we keep our child from them. It's been really nasty. It started when we didn't see them for Easter b/c we had company in town. My MIL would not let it go and I finally confronted her and wanted to know why in the past when they had not been in town for Easter that was okay. They didn't even call us on Easter one year. My inlaws seem for themost part to think that we should be there when they want us. But, if they are busy it's okay.

My husband talked to his parents. Even said to his parents they need to stop talking about us all behind our backs.

Well, I guess they didn't take him seriously. I am mostly upset b/c over the last few years I have hosted parties in their honor in my home, we have done things as a family and all to find out that the entire time my MIL and FIL were saying nasty things behind our backs. It is the ultimate in back stabbing.

I don't know what to do. I don't really want to be around them now. I feel like i can't win for losing. My in-laws have made it awkward to be around other family b/c I feel like a fool standing there being nice to my in-laws given everyone knows that they apparently have issues with me.

and I certainly am not going to invite them now to keep our child. If they will talk about us to other family members (my husbands brother, brothers wife, aunts, uncles, cousins) then it's only a matter of time before they start this mess with our child (children.)

I feel for my husband because he feels disrespected. I don't like fighting. But, I am really tired of being walked all over and treated like this.

Any advice?

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I'm not good at that last minute stuff either. I need to have a mind set of what the activities are going to be ahead of time but not good with spur of the moment things. Sounds like you may not be comfortable for the care of your child because they don't have this or that??? Do you trust them enough to keep a watchful eye on a very energetic 2.5 yr old? What my dil and I came too was, we split the cost of buying one of those playpens that can be taken out and folded up quickly for storage, so they can nap when we had the gk, and a fence you put in the doorways so that they(gk) know where they cant go...

As hard as it seems-don't take what you hear seriously, let it go in one ear and out the other! This kind of stuff is a family divider. You don't want that, but seems as those things have gotten uncomfortable and offensive/defensive, try talking to MIL personally and confront or forgive. Be honest with loving kindness. Explain in terms she can understand. If she doesn't accept tell her you don't want things as they are but you need them to understand and accept the way you n hubby wants things and hopefully you can speak from the heart-for out of the abundance is what it will be...

May you have wisdom to speak with your words & that the peace of God be with you...God Bless you & All your Family!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2010 at 9:01AM
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My advice is that when your in-laws ask to keep your little one on Tuesday from 6:00 p.m. till noon the next day, just say very sweetly, "That is so sweet, and I'd love to take you up on that, but we have plans. How about Friday morning from 8:00 a.m. till noon, would that work for you?" (or whatever alternate time/day that would work for you). That should make it clear that you're not trying to keep the baby from them, just that the time they want doesn't work for you. I wouldn't discuss the details of my plans, that would just give them an opening to argue about changing the plans. The point is that when they ask to do something that doesn't work for you, offer them some type of alternative or reassurance that they will be able to have some time with their grandchild, just at a time or place that works for you all.

I agree that buying a port-a-crib type thing for the grandparents would be a nice gesture, if that would make you more comfortable with the grandparents babysitting in their home.

If you're not comfortable with them keeping her at their home for long right now, tell them that you're not ready for her to be gone from home for so long right now, but when she's older you'd love for her to spend more time with them at their home.

I know many, many grandparents who feel that parents with toddlers should have a very loose schedule and don't understand mothers who want a set nap time, have play dates, mommy-and-me classes, mother's morning out programs, etc. So your in-laws may not understand or agree with whatever scheduling reasons you have. But if you've offered an alternative, then perhaps that will give them some reassurance that they're going to be able to have time with their grandchild.

As far as making it awkward to be around other family members - in our extended family, we all know one another's flaws. If Aunt Susie is a gossip, everybody knows it, if Uncle John exaggerates, everybody knows it. Whatever your in-laws do to you, chances are at some point they have or will do that same thing to others. If your in-laws are selfish and want things only on their terms and at their own convenience, then everybody knows that - they probably do that on some level to other family members, too. If you were in my extended family and came to family functions, were pleasant, charming, friendly and reasonable, then everybody would soon figure out your in-laws were really the problem. So my advice is to talk to your mother-in-law and father-in-law if they are reasonable people. If they're not, and nothing will convince them, then ignore their behind-your-back bad-mouthing, go to extended family functions and be gracious, friendly, kind, and reasonable. There's no reason to cut your child and your husband out of a relationship with aunts, uncles, cousins because your MIL and FIL are unpleasant behind your back.

As far as the grandparents bad-mouthing you to your child - you shouldn't allow that if you know it's going on. In the long run, though, children are pretty perceptive. And they love their parents and get very, very offended if someone says negative things about their parents. As your child gets older, certainly put an end to any bad-mouthing you behind your back. But don't be alarmed if it happens some anyway - it will probably backfire on your in-laws if it happens.

I hope you can work it out with your in-laws.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2010 at 2:10PM
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My daughter in law is a doll and I believe we have a mutual love and respect for each other. She calls me Mom and at times I actually like her better than I do my son. LOL I am grateful that I am allowed as much time as I want with my gkids and I am always willing to drive 7 hrs to care for them for days at a time. Ginger tells me that I am welcome at any time and I truly believe she means it.

The gkids are unhappy if they don't see us on a regular basis for a long weekend. Knowing that when grandkids get a certain age, they really don't have time for grandparents, we want a chance to build as many memories as we can during a very few years. Luckily my DIL and son want both the kids and us to have those memories.

As for talking behind your back, is it possible that you are doing the same thing in talking about your in-laws? Try to break a vicious cycle and model for your child the behaviour that you know is right. You and your husband and children will all be so much happier if you do.

I truly hope it works out that you and your in-laws can have a loving relationship. It will mean so much for all of you including your children in the future.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 9:21PM
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