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I think sometimes bossiness is the only way some women can relate across the generational line. Your MIL's mom was her role model. She may think...if it ever gets up past the automatic barrier to actually thinking...that she is relating to you, showing concern, contributing. Who knows? We can't make sense of the senseless...and I sometimes think we give credit where it isn't due, in trying to understand. Endure. That seems to be the operational word. I love the idea of imagining a target on her back. Maybe you can think of things to dip the arrows in, like a potion that renders her speechless?