MIL not talking to us...I feel bad for son (long)

nadastimerDecember 2, 2002

As a child I was in the same place my son mother and grandparents didn't get along so for about 2-3 years my brother and I had no contact with my dad's parents. The day we got back with them was so emotional and it was actually my mother who called them because my parents were going through a divorce. I've also seen my other grandmother go for years without talking to her one daughter and three granddaughters and it was a hard and emotional time. You can't get the time back and it hurts.

Now we're having problems with MIL. She decided she wanted nothing to do with me after assuming and flipping out over something that she didn't know everything about. I thought I got along quite well with my MIL and we seemed close until this point. It all seems very petty and I'm sure others will wonder what all else happened but really in all honesty she decided she hated me all because I was trying to contact our ex-SIL. MIL hated this woman but it was mostly because she never gave her a fair chance. I knew her for a short period of time but my fiance' and I lived in their basement and did a lot with them...I also worked with this woman. We've had no contact with her for about 3 years (since the divorce) and this past summer her daughter's contacted us about getting together. I asked the one daughter via e-mail to tell her mother that I would love to speak with her again and know how she is. Well, the e-mail addy I had was at the girl's dad's house (she lives with her mother and the other recently moved in with her father). The step mother goes over the girl's mail and does with it whatever and for some reason thought the e-mail about me wanting to contact the ex-SIL was worth forwarding to my MIL. So MIL got nasty. She thinks I want to "compare notes" and "cause problems". Then she went on a rampage and contacted all the other BIL's and SIL's trying to destroy my reputation with them by saying I said things about them that I never said. I'm supposely VERY jealous of my neieces and nephews...especially the baby and yet I've called to check on SIL while she was pregnant, went to the hospital to see my nephew and call and visit frequently so I can have a relationship with this child and know him. So MIL tried to tell everyone I was mad and causing problems because I found out MIL makes fun of my clothing (I'm 22 and wear things people my age would wear...nothing too revealing though because I'm also a Mom). So MIL said she wanted nothing to do with me and left it up to my fiance' if he wanted to keep a relationship with his mother. He was just as angry as I was about the whole thing and he's fed up with her. She's always got her nose in our business and knows things she shouldn't without us even telling her (like how much we make and how much all our bills are and she even goes as far as checking stores to see things you bought to see what you paid for them then she tells others that you can't afford this or that or that you could not have paid bills, etc). She's also always causing controversy by being your friend to your face to get info she can use against you or she'll say things about the others and tell them you said it so that none of the SIL's get along really. MIL also has a habit of calling her son's, DIL's and grandchildren names and putting them down. She's a pretty controlling person and I think that's why she's mad at me...she wasn't in control of me. So's almost 3 months later and we're still not talking.

I'm worried because DS (3 1/2) is upset about not seeing or hearing from his grandparents. I would call down there so he could talk to her but there have been times that she wasn't talking to another of her sons and his family and she got angry when the "kids" called her. She said that their mother was just trying to make her feel bad and con her into getting along with them again or was using her for a baby sitter because the kids said they wanted to come visit. DS also gets upset because when we drive past their house (they live off a main road we have to take to get home) and often the other grandkids and son's and DIL's are there visiting....even those who didn't go there at all before. Also, when we see my one SIL and the kids at my fiance's Dad and step Mom's house, she comments (more like brags really) about how Grandma watched the kids overnight or took them shopping or to dinner or had them over for dinner, etc. MIL never did this stuff before. I'm hurting about this because of my son and how he reacts and the things he says to us. The other complicated thing in all this is that I'm almost 3 months pregnant (ironically they figured my conception date was the day MIL quit talking to us!). MIL knows I'm pregnant because my fiance' told his step father while they were hunting. My one SIL said she mentions nothing about me being pregnant and hasn't asked at all about me or the baby and I had complications in the past. We've also run into other family members that didn't have a clue because they aren't telling it's a big secret or something. I'm worried that she's not going to have anything to do with this baby or she'll show up at the hospital on the day I have him/her (if it's a girl she won't like her much anyway because she tells us how much she dislikes little girls) and cause a scene. I keep telling myself it's her loss but I think of my kids and I know how it felt to not see my grandparents and how it hurt them. This woman doesn't seem to be hurt at all, though. She has no problems writing her kids out of her life and has done it two others at different times but the one son has never really been able to repair all the damage.

Anyone been on my side or the other side and how did it effect you? I would repair it if I could but MIL holds grudges and my fiance' feels we are owed an apology not the other way around because we did nothing wrong. His mother isn't one to apologize...she just pretends like nothing happened and you don't talk about it. I guess I just really need to vent a little. Thanks for letting me do so...


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I am confused. You speak of your MIL and then you talk about your fiance. Is she the mother of your fiance? Or the mother of an ex-husband?

    Bookmark   December 2, 2002 at 8:51PM
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Sorry about that. He's really my fiance'. We've been together for almost 5 years and are married in every way but haven't actually done that yet. To his family and mine, we're married and they call me his wife and he's my husband. Sometimes I think it would be smarter for me to just say he's my husband on here because it gets confusing when I call them the in-laws for others. And don't go thinking MIL has a problem with us not being married, cause marriage isn't a big deal to them. It's more of a bad thing, actually. My fiance's mother and father never married and were together for about 11 years and she said she really didn't want to get married to her second husband when she did either. Actually she discourages us and anyone else from getting married or having kids! The other son's are married but we're all still treated the same way at one time or another by MIL.


    Bookmark   December 3, 2002 at 8:25AM
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Leslie, I can't really tell you what to do. But she sounds like a toxic person that I would really not want my children around anyway. I wouldn't want the risk of them growing up watching this type of manipulating and thinking its an acceptable way to act. I would be tempted to just keep my distance and comfort your children as best you can in other ways. There are nursing homes and senior citizens' centers that would love to have your child come visit, and many many older folk who would love to have him in their lives. Perhaps you should consider that.

It sounds like it would be healthy to get some distance--literally--between yourselves and that family in general. Like about 1.000 miles would be good :0)

I am wondering if, now that you are expecting, are you considering making it legal? That would be better for the children, I'm thinking.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2002 at 11:33AM
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I guess that's what I need to stop and think about and quit worrying. I think a relationship with MIL has more bad points than good...and why spend so much time trying to get someone to approve you that never will? It should tell me something that my fiance' isn't bothered at all by not hearing from her or not having a relationship with his own mother. He's known her a lot longer than I have, so he's a better judge of the situation than I would be, right? And it says something that she has no problems writing children and grandchildren out of her life~especially over something so petty. That takes a special kind of person to that to their child that they gave birth to and raised. I mean, she hasn't talked to her one son in about 3 years and says she doesn't even care anymore because it's been so long. I know when I really think about it, I'm still angry and hurt over a lot of stuff that's been said to me or about me or my family since I met this woman (she's done a lot of belittling me and telling me I'm unhappy or have a low self esteem when I know I don't and I'm happy). She's caused me a lot of grief and problems too by just constantly talking to me about my one BIL and SIL and their situation and things. I don't agree with how they take care of their kids and things but it doesn't have to be a major part of my life! She would call or e-mail or IM or whatever about them until that's all I thought or talked about 24/7! But when I sat down and really thought of it all...I didn't care at all about them~it's their life and their problems! Or I've listened to her call here and get on fiance' about something I let him buy (he's spoiled she says and yet the other boys are mistreated because they never get anything they want). Or she'd make him feel guilty because his brother would supposely do anything for him and we wouldn't return the favor...when in fact my fiance' was making less money than one of them let alone both and they were bumming money from us! It was constant arguments and problems every week. And you can't tell MIL anything...she knows more than you do about your life. I often hear my fiance' saying, "Yes, Mom," "I know, Mom." when he's on the phone with her and it's just because she's telling him she knows we didn't pay our electric bill or something (because she figured up how much we spent going out to eat and on the stuff we bought) when in fact we did but she won't listen. And DS may miss his Grandma but he has many more where she came from! Ones that actually say they love him and wouldn't pretend he didn't exist. (Once this past summer we saw her in the Wal-Mart parking lot coming down the same isle we were coming up and she dashed in between cars to avoid us! She had this look on her face that I've seen her get when she sees someone she doesn't want to. That made my fiance' so mad because there our son was yelling, "Grandma" and she's running like were strangers! We weren't even fighting with her then!)

Another thing is...if I don't have to go down there and put up with her and all that crap...I don't hear stuff about the others and can't be blamed for saying things about them. That's been a good thing. And my one SIL that I don't get along with... I see very little of her now. I've realized she and MIL are a lot alike and she just causes stress that I don't need, also.

Okay, I just need to keep thinking of how peacful it is now and remember the horrible things she's done and said and how it's not something DS needs to be around or my baby when it's born. I really wish she would change, but it's not up to me and it may be way too late.

Oh, and yes we do plan to marry. We always have it's just we get busy and it doesn't pop into our everyday lives. If we could just go today or tomorrow and do it and it be done, we would. Neither of us really like to plan stuff. We want just a JP wedding with a simple family party afterward. I think it would be best to wait for warm weather now and others think I should wait because I'll be gaining weight and all due to the baby.


    Bookmark   December 4, 2002 at 2:01PM
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I am a MIL myself and from what you wrote I think the main problem is she just doesn't respect you, at all. She feels she has some kind of right to treat you like dirt, I feel sorry for you, your child and your fiance'. My MIL's MIL was a real tyrant, my MIL is better but likes to control a little, DH's family respects pushiness more than kindness, I found I needed a more vocal approach to her, she respects that! My own mother would be appalled, but then she doesn't run around yelling and screaming! The more you try to get along, the harder is. Don't let her treat your children badly, that will impact their lives more than a grouchy grandma they never see. ~ LynnZee

    Bookmark   December 6, 2002 at 11:43PM
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My fiance' was raised in a different kind of family than I was, I will admit to that. But in some ways I know he appreciates my family more. Like I said before his mother was hard on them and didn't do much or get much for them, while my mother would do anything to make sure we had whatever we needed and sometimes whatever we wanted. I'm a spoiled little brat to MIL because of that. My family also seems to respect one another a lot more than they do. My father and other swore and things but not at us and like it is with my fiance's family. I mean they can call their step father "d#ckhead"like it's a loving pet name! They say the f word like it's "I love you" and other things. That really bothered me at first~even little comments. I was VERY offended by some of the comments and names and still am some to this day. But my fiance' isn't this way at home or work or with my family, only around them. He loves my family because we actually get along and have family get togethers that people attend. My brother was at our house one day when my fiance' was talking to his mother and he was in shock. He said if we talked to our mother like that, she'd kill us. The thing was he didn't hear the other end of the story and what she was saying to him. They certainly are different. I think that's the real problem. The only prospective DIL my MIL ever really liked was this one girl my oldest BIL dated. She came from a rough family and MIL felt better than her so she was okay. My one SIL is a little "dumb" or at least acts like it, especially about parenting and normal every day things. Like their kids escape from the house all the time because they won't lock the doors or get up with them in the morning. Once the kids ran off while BIL was sleeping and SIL was at work and luckily the teachers at the school across the street saw two young, half dressed kids wandering around. BIL had to call the police to find the kids. They were laughing about it later that night!!!! Then MIL tells us about the time her oldest ran off when he was about 4 and walked a good couple of miles to where his father worked like it's nothing. So I think MIL relates to SIL and BIL and their bad parenting and other issues (while I'm appalled by it!). The rest of us DIL's are too spoiled and naive and have self esteem problems (this comes from caring a little about how you look and that we actually get out of our pj's on the weekend, I guess) she says. But I think honestly, it's killing her that her children like our families and the way they're treated. Or that our families help out whenever possible or if they can. She seems to like watching people fall on their face and then she rubs your face in it.

Yeah, the more I think and talk about this stuff...the more I know things are better this way.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2002 at 8:29AM
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nadastimer, what you wrote reminds me how my late FIL called my SIL "little sh**" and she called him big sh**", I couldn't believe it! They thought it was funny! I never would have said that to my father, nor would he call me a name like that. Even all these years later, we are 55 now, going to see MIL and SIL, there's still the drinking and fighting. Visiting my family has always been pleasant, My DH comments how he's not "tied up in knots" after a visit with my family or our children and grandchildren. I don't think it's going to change for his family, MIL is 80 now, SIL is 46. Luckily we have lived in another state than them for the last 18 years. LynnZee

    Bookmark   December 8, 2002 at 8:06PM
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