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Messages - luise.volta

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Bride2B...when you get a chance, read what I have written under our "Success Story" heading. I have written about my own mother in law. I think you might enjoy it. It is really wonderful to have you on this site!  ;DLuise

I'm posting this under our most active list just to remind everyone that we have other places we can write. Just for fun I have posted under "Success Stories" and "Poems." When you get a chance...take a look. Blessings, Luise

Hi Millie and Lostone: Thank you, Millie, for hanging in there on this new Forum. It's hard sometimes to learn how to use new (to us) software. I am flopping around, too, but not as much as I did on day one!

You stand up for yourself in a moment of either strength or weakness (I find it difficult to tell which sometimes) and then the door slams. I know the feeling. Then the "would of...should of...could of" stuff that plays in your head starts. Day in and day out. Week after week. Has it gotten to months and/or years yet? I think we need to keep remembering the good times. Those precious times with our kids that we'll never forget. I keep reminding myself that no one can take them away. They happened. We really were great moms and we had  great kids! 

I find deep comfort in connecting with other women who care and in hearing about how they have taken their natural nurturing instincts and put them to use. For instance, one lady has signed up for foster care to fill the void she thought her grand kids would occupy. Another one wrote that she is feeling much better and now has a poodle! I kid you not!  :D We have to grieve and it feels to me like experiencing the compassion of others who know what this is all about...can help us heal. Our lives aren''t over. Some of our expectations may be dead but we're not. We still have a lot to give. 

Blessing to each and every one of us! Luise


I have been reading this topic and it reminds me of myself sometimes. I still get stuck occasionally in thinking, or maybe it's feeling, that my son's issues are also mine. It's like I can't discern a boundary. ..maybe because from heart to heart there is none. That doesn't and shouldn't necessarily translate into no boundaries in the physical universe. He's a grown man, just as I'm a grown woman and we both  struggle with "life" at times because we are both still learning and growing. That's what life offers us. However, the mother in me sometimes wants to help when the last thing the grown man in him wants is mothering. And I have to admit that I have been known to bristle when he seems to think he knows what is best for me.

Each MIL is unique, as is each son and each DIL (and future DIL.) It sounds like you want your future MIL to be different that she is. I certainly would, too, but that's probably never going to happen. You probably can't tell her how you want her to be and expect much in the way of change. Some women get stuck in the authority that comes naturally and necessarily with raising children and refuse to give it up when it becomes obsolete and even intrusive. It's like it has become part of them, or something. When grandchildren come along, things can get worse instead of better.

What you can do is talk with your FH regarding the tales he has carried to her and the times he has vetoed you in her favor to see if you can get a better level of cooperation from him. It doesn't sound like there is a safe place in your relationship where you can say what you think and feel about his mom's obvious interference, (as in the school stuff), without his taking it to her. That is called triangulation and it will keep everyone stirred up in endless he said/she said brush fires that can never be put out.

Mutual respect between the two of you and a united front is something that could make a world of difference. It won't change his mother's concept that your business is her business, but it could bring you a more peaceful environment in which to decide how to live with a door between you and his mom that is not closed but is not open, either. Your home is understandably your domain. It it can be really complex that you are marrying someone that she feels still belongs to her domain in some way. Touchy stuff.

Your future MIL did a great job of raising your FH and it sounds like he's the guy for you and that you two are working out your issues and going forward.  Respecting his mom may continue to be difficult for you if she can't find it in her heart to respect you. It's very hard for most of us to give what we are denied.

For me, the single most difficult task in my 82 years has been and still is having people and situations be the way they are. They are not under my control...but how I react to them is. I give to family and friends (and situations), what I give...and then I am astounded and perplexed when they don't always give me the same thing back. I often get something back that I don't understand; that doesn't fit my expectations. Then, momentarily at least, I don't see my expectations as the issue. It is so much easier to see my family and friends as flawed. This doesn't always happen, I can see progress...but I have a long way to go. I get so tired of my own limitations.

It sounds like your future MIL wants you to be different than you are. At the same time, you want her to be different than she is. Can you step back and get what kind of am impasse that is? You may never get her to see that's the case but if one person pulls out of a conflict, it loses its energy.

Blessings, Luise

Welcome, Patti. I, too, have had both kinds of daughter in laws. How confusing! When you get a chance, I'd like you to read my story about my own mother in law under the Stories thread. What a gal!  ;D

Grab Bag / Re: Death of a Dear Friend
« on: May 17, 2009, 08:23:47 PM »
Well, P., from my point of view you did the right thing and probably should have done it sooner. My husband and I live in a retirement center. It is large, old (built in 1967) and covers a mobile home park, independent living apartments, a large number of HUD units, a boarding unit, assisted care and a 81 bed nursing home. There is a restaurant and a grocery store, hiking trails and views of Puget Sound. It is nonprofit.

What I have seen here over the last 9 years that relates to your post is people trying to be there for family members or spouses to their own detriment. You had to take care of yourself. We all have limitations To serve others and be true to ourselves, we need to know what they are so we can continue to thrive and give, support and love.

I have no idea how many times I have seen, here on our campus, over and over and over again...the care giver burn out and actually die while the disabled person lived on.  We have classes here teaching people not to do that. Each life is precious, none more precious than the other.

My heart goes out to you. What a loving friend you are.

I had to choose, when my friend of 45 years was dying, what I could give and what was beyond me. I saw being the care giver of my 97 year-old husband as my primary
focus and committed to calling my friend (who lived 50 miles away) every night for as long as she lived. That was as far as I could stretch myself and still stay operational.

You did beautifully and you still are there for her. Celebrate yourself and your deep and abiding compassion.


Grab Bag / Re: Death of a Dear Friend
« on: May 16, 2009, 09:08:13 PM »
Thank you. P. My friend was ill and old (87) and ready to go. I thought I was ready, too, for her to leave. How strange the emptiness feels, even so. And you are so right about Soul-friends. Death is normal, it's the other side of the coin of life. And still I grieve. No matter how many times we go through is always new and fresh and so hard. I can't imagine what it has been like for you and your friend. Ten years! I just can't begin to fathom it.

Grab Bag / Death of a Dear Friend
« on: May 16, 2009, 01:19:25 PM »
Hi Everyone, I'm writing today regarding my best friend's death on Thursday of this week. We've been close for over 45 years. She had inoperable, ovarian cancer and for the last 20 months, I have called her long distance every night so she could talk about whatever she wanted to. She had no family. She went into hospice two weeks ago tomorrow and when I went to see her a week ago today she was in a coma. None-the-less, when I sang to her...she open her eyes, focused them on me and raised her arm to offer one last hug. It was amazing.

What's going on with me is my compartmentalization. I knew she was leaving and I prayed for her release, so intellectually...I'm fine. And we both have belief systems that allow for a future reunion, so I'm fine...spiritually. However, emotionally, I'm a real mess. This happens every time I have to face the death of someone close, even a pet. They "disappear" and my world has a hole in it and I grieve so deeply I think I won't survive it. I think it is probably as "normal as blueberry pie" but that doesn't help very much. Luise

Well, even though that was then and this is feels healthy to me that you have expressed it, P. Not just for yourself but for all of us who have been there and done that. What a huge disappointment and how horrible not to find resolution. I have had the same misfortune but I have also had the other kind of daughter-in-law and she is one of the greatest blessings in my life. They aren't all bad any more than all mother-in-laws are bad. I hope she will decide to post here so you can get to know her. Luise

Hi Everyone and Welcome Millie,

Nice to connect with you again.  :) I was thinking as I read your post how it feels to be understood. To be heard is absolutely necessary for most of us...and to be "known" through deep understanding, respect and shared experience is priceless.

When Prissy first wrote, she asked if anyone had tried counseling. I just wanted to comment here that it seems to me that we would need to have all parties concerned willing to work through the issues at hand for that to work. Change is possible in that venue but what we are up against usually isn't that malleable. For that reason, counseling often is about acceptance rather than resolution because those who need it most, don't see the need for it.

For me, having it (whatever "it" is) be how it is often stops me in my tracks. All of my energy seems to go into wanting things to be different. I have just been stopped that way by the death of my best friend on Thursday. I will post about that under another heading...but it seems to me that it's the same basic problem. Until the people who have turned on us and who have successfully rationalized their behavior to themselves and others, (thus making resolution impossible,) have a change of seems like there has been a death of sorts of the relationship itself. Luise

To Rose: I would send the card. Not with any fixed hopes but with endless love. You are carrying so much on your shoulders. My heart goes out to you. We aren't always wise. We stumble and fall. We react and fight back. Then we look back at our humanness and see what transpired as a result...and we can't go back and fix it. No one should have to attempt perfection. It's unattainable. Forgiveness is needed and it's sorely lacking. 

When my eldest son died I got a horrible letter nine days later from my DIL regarding how evil I was. That was nine years ago and I still occasionally run the "If only" tape. If only I hadn't responded. If only I had stepped back and let her bombard me in her grief (with no sensitivity at all from her for my grief.) If only I had been calm and able to rise above it.

We do our best. Sometimes it's exemplary and sometimes it's not. It's still our best.

Blessings, Luise

I have seen those exact dynamics at play more than once. How painful to be the target of another person's insecurity. There doesn't appear to be any logic, no place for defense. To be systematically discredited must be totally demoralizing. 

I have also seen MILs who similarly set out to discredit and estrange loving DILs with the express purpose of ending the marriage and "retrieving" their sons.

Wherever there is a pathological need for supremacy, tragedy seems likely follow.

Who has seen successful intervention? How did that work? Did it last? 

I don't think we move through such an experience of our own volition. However, it may be that one day we will just notice that we have put it behind us. Who knows?

In the meantime, as hard as it is, feeling how we feel is probably our inner truth-telling.

Perfection is such a joke. If those who now want us to have been perfect, in retrospect, were perfect themselves...they would never invent such foolishness. It's a two-way street.

When they were little...we were perfect in their eyes. Wasn't that wonderful? We were just being ourselves, warts and all, and they were tickled pink with us.

That was then and this is now, of course. Feet of clay everywhere...on the accuser and the accusee. How silly to just be willing to see half of that. 

You are still who you were then...acknowledged or not. You are more...because you now live with indignities you never knew existed.

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