In-Law Vent

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hopin2bpreggermeggers's picture
Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 567
In-Law Vent

As way of background, Ed is an only child. His parents have smothered him since day 1. I mean my MIL seriously has crazy moments. So, at about 19, he decided he had had enough and "walked out." (If I had time to tell you some of the crazy stories, you would understand and agree with his decisions).

Fast forward 3 years later (his senior year of college), I made it clear I couldn't marry someone who didn't have a good family relationship - hands down the most stupid thing I have ever done. So for my sake, he tries to reunite with them. They live in MD and, at the time, we were living in ATL. Nonetheless, he began visiting them and calling them more often. Things were tenuous at best, but on the right track.

When he walked out, they had cut him off financially (understandable, I guess, given he hadn't spoken to them). We were about to get married and he asked them to "co-sign" his student loan (not pay for school, but co-sign it bc he was under 25). They said no. So my father (who had never met him at this point) had to co-sign the loan so Ed could pay for and finish college. TO this day, they did not pay a cent for his education. (We didn't expect it, but you'll see why that makes me mad a little further down).

So in 2007 we moved back to MD. They live 15 min away from us (too close). So they expected that we would hang out with them a lot. Well, we were 24 years old and we hated how they would treat DH like he was still 12 when we would go over. So we would only go over like 2 times a month and would only call to schedule. Did they ever come over to us? No. Did they ever call us? No. Yet, we would get a guilt trip when we would go over about "how you never come see us." Then, they would proceed to talk to Ed in baby talk...)#(*)($#*#$(

Additionally, they showed their true colors. Right when we moved back, DH thought maybe he would want to be a physical therapist. He told them that and they sent an email {Note: That is another pet peeve, they don't argue in person - they are passive aggressive and do it via email or hold it in and then bring it up- a year later} saying they would not support this move, they would not be proud of him, esp "after they paid for his education." I still have that email bc I always want to remember how NOT to be.

Well, since I got pregnant. They have done the same thing. Even though Ed and I BOTH work 70 hours+ a week (and DH is in school), they always say "we haven't heard from you..." And they will proceed to talk about "Eddie" as a kid (in baby talk) as though he is a completely different person from the 28 year old sitting next to them. It drives DH nuts. And me b\c we're adults.

So they just got back from Australia with my parents. Had WE not called THEM, we still wouldn't have seen them (but it would have been our faults). We invite them over to decorate our Xmas tree and have dinner. We did that so we wouldn't have to head over there (with our busy schedules and me not feeling well) to decorate their tree. At 25 weeks with twins, I cooked a 3 course meal and helped decorate the tree. While here, MIL goes "so what time are you coming over next week to decorate the tree." NOt - "do you want to help?" or "are you free next weekend?" (which we are not) or "would you like to come over for some dinner and to decorate our tree." She just demanded it. That's how they are. So manipulative and guilt-tripping. It drives me nuts.

So, to give them credit, they brought my bday presents (they were awesome!) and I opened them. But then yesterday, on my actual birthday, they did not call or text or do anything. Now if that had been reversed (i had not called them on her birthday), I would have an email in my inbox from my FIL telling me how bad of a DIL I am and how I hurt her feelings. Yet, we won't ever say anything out of DH's fear we will hurt their feelings. I don't care they didn't call, but really it's the PRINCIPLE. Such hypocrites!

So they have already begun talking about how they are always going to be around with these kids. While in Aus, they talked about it constantly and my mom called me up on their return to warn me they will be around a lot.

I'm already worried about hurting their feelings when I tell her I want my mom here, and not her, in the few weeks after the birth to help. I just know I can yell at my mom when I get frustrated or tired without hurting her feelings. Where I cannot do that with MIL b\c she's so f-ing sensitive and passive aggressive. Plus, I just don't want to see them that much. They're the most boring, non-conversational people I"ve met. And, quite frankly, my MIL acts as dumb as a stick sometimes (we can't tell if it's real, from drugs, or an act).

Thanks for letting me vent. THey just drive me nuts.

lmh101979's picture
Joined: 07/05/09
Posts: 966

Girl, just cut them out. They add NOTHING to your life except frustration and stress. If you can, write out the specific things that make you upset and ask them if this is behavior that they are willing to change. If not then they can take their attitudes and go. If you let them treat you badly, then your girls will think that is how you are suppose to act, either like a brat or a doormat. Better to show them the strong confident women that you are then how to put up with a jerk in their lives. No matter what you decide, I'm sure it will be the right decision for your family. I just can't imagine how terrible it would be to have crappy in laws so close! Big hugs for that for sure!

waitingimpatiently614's picture
Joined: 02/17/09
Posts: 386

oh man. they sound like my sister's in-laws...her husband's family is so dysfunctional, and he is the only "normal" one who managed to escape the rest of them, but now they spend quite a bit of time with them again because they live in the same town. it's always a source of stress and frustration for my sister, because she gets blamed for every little perceived insult or shortcoming (they think their son/her husband can do no wrong and treat him like a baby, like you're describing). her husband is like "that's how they are, just ignore them, or just stop calling them, or just tell my mom no" because he doesn't really care if they get mad, but my sister still feels obligated to keep the peace somewhat especially now that her kids are older and attached to them as grandparents. but you can't reason with people like that or have a real relationship...all you can do is try to tolerate them in small doses and stick to your boundaries beyond that, even if they get mad.

i hate to say it, but it's only going to get harder and more complicated once the twins enter the scene and they have the grandparent claim. can you move back to atlanta or someplace far away?? ha! but seriously, you and your DH have your own family now, so you get to do what you want when you want to and whatever is best for you and your girls, and their feelings are really not a priority. especially in those first few weeks after the birth!!! do NOT let that woman near you if she is a source of stress and frustration! only supportive, ultra-helpful people who instinctively know how to help you should be around during that time! i am the least-confrontational person you will ever meet and i am always going out of my way to please everyone else, but when i was getting close to my due date with DS1 and DH's dad announced he wanted to come when baby was one week old and stay with us for a week, i flat out said "no." he makes me uncomfortable and expects to be waited on and entertained...not a helpful presence at all, just awkward and exhausting. i told DH to tell him he couldn't come until DS was at least 5-6 weeks old, and DH had to take those days off work to "play host" to his dad so i could focus on taking care of our newborn. and that's what happened. i think DH was surprised but thankful that i was so adamant about it.

AnnaRO's picture
Joined: 07/06/08
Posts: 7033

You are not alone with the crazy in-laws. I say if your DH is willing, cut them out again and do it before your twins are born. It will get much worse with the babies, I can promise you.

I have in-laws that drive me crazy too. DH is the only boy and the baby of the family. He can do no wrong. It's not MIL and FIL as much (though they have moments), but more DH's certifiable oldest sister. She is actually, clinically crazy. When she's around DD she attributes every feature and every action to being characteristic of her family. "She has my laugh." "She has my eyes.", "Those are O---- ears!" On and on and on. To listen to her talk, you'd think I had absolutely nothing to do with her genetic makeup at all. She totally ignores the fact that I am pg now and I'm sure she will until he's born and then she will take ownership in the name of her family and once again act like I had no part in the creation, birth or any physical characteristic of my own kid. There are other issues (endless issues) but that's just a taste of what I deal with. We are at a crossroads now and there's potential to move out of this town (where she also lives) and I am pushing that particular path.

Anyway, based on my own experiences with IL's that I want to strangle and scream at regularly, you have two options. Either accept that this is how they are and find a way to deal/cope with it. Or get the he|| away from them and don't look back! Neither option is ideal since cutting them out would deprive your children of grandparents and keeping them means having crazy in your life. I wish there were a perfect option. Maybe you could move far away and only see them once or twice a year. . . ?