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Started a letter-Then Stopped

Started by just2baccepted, September 30, 2009, 12:53:46 pm

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Ok ladies I've got a question.

I started a letter to my MIL.  I decided to bite the bullet and confront her.  The only way I can confront someone in this way is to write a letter because I"d get nervous and forget half the things I want to say.  I had been thinking about writing a letter to her for about a year.  I actually had been taking notes for the future letter.  I started the letter about a week or so ago and I've reread the parts I have so far and my goodness all the things I"m saying to her may be very hurtful, but unfortunately they're true!  Its neat because after writing part of the letter I felt better and all of a sudden didn't feel the need to finish the letter, so I haven't.  I've just saved the disk for now.  My fear is that if I confront her she might get extremely depressed, which she already suffered from now.  I also think it might change things dramatically for my hubby.   Should I just finish the letter and keep it on hand just in case and just not send it for now?


Dear Just2be,
I think (just my opinion) that you should just hang onto it and keep it for the future should it ever be needed. 

Writing like this is so good for us, it's therapeutic. The writing actually takes the sting out of it and gets the situation in our hands.  I think you're doing a good thing by keeping it for now.

Hope you keep writing it and someday, who knows? you might or you might not send it but it will make you feel more in control by having it. 


I agree. Write it for therapy but don't send it. Writing can be a great way to sort things out and to release emotions but it is a one-way communication; a monologue with no body language or voice tones to classify or clarify. It enters into another person's filters and can be immediately distorted and you are not there to say, "no, that's not what I meant."

A one-on-one confrontation is much harder but it is much wiser and more fair, in my humble opinion.

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


I so agree...  I wrote an apology letter to my DIL, sent it and have (2 months later) heard nothing back from her -- I want to talk with her about what went wrong, what I did .. I should apologize in person and make amends that way.   

But writing it down does help sort things out... I like to journal for that and even 'speak' to people as I journal.   


Chickie- you pretty much said exactly what I was feeling in my gut.  For now I plan to hold on to the letter

I just keep thinking of things I would like to put in the letter.  Today I thought of two more.  My MIL is very very manipulative and I remembered another time when I know she was manipulating.  One time we all met for hubby's B-day at a restaurent and my young nephew came along.  My MIL told us that my nephew had a chance to go play with his cousins from his dads side of the family but chose to come along for the birthday dinner, which I thought was a little strange.  And even then I wondered what she might have "promised" him to get him to come along and then sure enough right before we were done eating, my nephew said "when are we going down to your house to see the puppy?"  He kept on about "I thought I was going to see the puppy."  Now I realize that MIL had promised nephew that he would get to see our new puppy if he came along.  But we had never said that we all were going to our house.  We sort of met in a central location and our house was 15 miles south of where we were eating.  MIL knew that we weren't going to the house but she lied to nephew to get him to come along.  What does that do to trust?   It kills it doesn't it?? And I realize that she must have done this crap to my poor hubby!  >:(

And then another one I would like to put in the letter is a couple years ago we were at their house sitting out on the back patio.  My FIL had recently been bringing up to my husband about this super highway that was being planned.  FIL knows what nervous/worrier my hubby can be but FIL kept saying to hubby, "I think they just may build that super highway right through your neighborhood."  The thing is I never realized that FIL was saying this stuff to hubby, I just noticed he seemed worried about it. (You know because the government can just take your land for a price they deem fair and then build whatever they want in that area, imminent domain or something like that.)
So I noticed that my hubby was starting to research this super highway on the internet like he was worried and then it got me worried too.  Now I realize that's exactly what FIL wanted because he was ticked off that we had moved further away from him and MIL closer to my family!  So then one day we were sitting on the back patio at their house and FIL brought up this super highway in front of me and then it hit me, this is why hubby has been worrying about his the past few months.  FIL started talking about the super highway and then he started laughing and said something like, "They just may bull doze down your house to build that super highway!"  And he was laughing while he said it.  And I spoke up and said "well that's ok I'll be ready for a new house by then anyway."  I thought, yea he'd like if they bull dozed our house and then we had to move near them.  Isn't that a crappy thing to do your kid?  I think he just comes off as being selfish and thinking only how he feels.  I mean I understand that they were upset about us moving to my hometown but to possibly wish this on your own child, I just don't' understand.  But I really believe that would be so therapeutic to them if our house did get bull dozed and they got to push the button.  What does that say about them???

Thanks for letting me vent.  But I just remembered those two incidents that I would want in the letter.


I'm trying to get the idea of this in my mind because I know it was much worse when viewing it in real life.

I guess when the nephew wanted to see the puppy, that was because your MIL wanted to go back to your house and the only way she could was to bribe the nephew?  I wonder why she did that? Had she not been there before?

As far as the highway being built thru your new house, I guess that was because they were jealous that you moved closer to your family?  I agree, it was not nice at all of them to say that.  They resort to passive agressive stuff when they're upset.  I hate that too.

Maybe that's what they do when they're around you.  Do they do the other sibblings that way?  Have you noticed it? 

I know all these things are terrible but on paper, it just looks like jealousy to me.  Not nice, but just jealousy.  I might be all off on this one. 


Well I suppose I could be over reacting and when these both happened I just let it roll off but when I found out the talking behind my back stuff I guess maybe I'm looking for things, who knows.  But I know that my MIL will try tactics like this when she wants hubby to go to other family events.  So I figured she lied to my nephew telling him that he would get to see my puppy if he came along for the b-day dinner knowing full well they wouldn't be going to our house.  See the nephew had a chance to go play with his cousins but MIL wanted him to go with MIL and FIL for hubby's b-day dinner so she told nephew that he would get to play with my new puppy.  Of course I"m just assuming that.  I think she probably thought that he had a better offer to play with his cousins so she had come up with something to get him to go.  That's just my thinking.  Just some of her manipulative tactics.


I know there must be so much more here than I am seeing. I'm sure she's pulled some real stunts that have shown her true colors and that's why you're thinking about these things.

I wish she wouldn't talk behind your back.  Who is telling you about it?  Is it someone with an axe to grind with her?  I always think when someone tells me something that someone said about me: "what are they trying to do?  Are they trying to cause trouble? Get control of you?"

I know there must be a lot more that she's done to show you she is not accepting of you but from the things you mentioned, it seems like they're not worth even writing down in your journal. 

If I'm wrong here, just tell me. 


October 01, 2009, 09:01:58 pm #8 Last Edit: October 02, 2009, 07:25:40 am by luise.volta
I'm thinking she isn't going to change. I would stay aware but I would focus elsewhere whenever possible. That's who you got as a can't trade her in or retrain her. She's part of the package...and the more attention you give to her antics...the more power you give her over you. Does that make sense?

Prissy made a good point about her talking behind your back. Someone else is talking to you and are you talking behind her back to that someone? I seems to me that the "he said and she said" stuff can often do more harm than good. Could you let others know that you're just no longer interested?

What kind of a puppy>  :)

I know it isn't fair...but it sure as heck is life.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


Just2be, I guess when she threw things and broke them, that kind of did it for me.  My DIL has done that and it feels like an attack from terrorists.

Is this SIL your Husband's brother's wife?  If so, be very careful.  If this is your husband's sister then that's another story. 

It isn't any of her business how you spend your money or where you live.  She can grieve about the loss but she can't react like she did.

She must have done a lot for you to not trust her and not like her because you are a reasonable and nice person. I can't understand why she feels this way toward you.

I'm so sorry.


One of the hardest things for me to learn (and practice) is that when someone is unkind or critical, I don't have to give it any power. They are unhappy but I don't have to let their unhappiness infect me. When I do, it is because, on some deep level, the criticism hit a nerve. That's actually what I need to address. Where do I lack confidence? What can I do about that? And, of course, is there anything in their criticism that is useful?

Others have values that are different from mine. And anything said behind my back is a puff of smoke unless I inhale it and become toxic as a result.

Your purse and shoe collections are about you. You have fun with them. You love to find bargains and how you dress reflects your self image. You don't have to explain yourself or tone yourself down or ask for permission to be you. There is no pleasing others. What one person finds delightful, the next person will find disgusting. Everything we say and do (and wear) must pass through their filters and that's where distortion and opinion reign. If our self-value involves everyone voting we need to regroup.

I wear one pair of shoes and carry one purse until they disintegrate. Does that make me bad...a slob...unimaginative and lazy? Or is it a sign that I am practical...wise...real and comfortable? It depends on who it judging me, doesn't it? What I wear and carry doesn't really mean anything until it runs up against another person's value system. And who is that or that person?

And throwing things is a tantrum. Maybe cute at age two...maybe not. I think I would have moved to the other side of the world!
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


I hope everything is better with your caregiving situation, let us know. You know our thoughts are always with you.

I need clarification, please....about the "when someone hurts us, they are unhappy".  I need so much to believe that.  I don't get it.  I would never do that to anyone....why do people do that.  I feel especially vulnerable today. 


They are unhappy but I don't have to let their unhappiness infect me.

Luise I loved your entire post and you know what I am truly thinking about printing it off and posting it on my fridge.  You are so right about what you said.  My MIL is obviously a very unhappy and lonely person and she takes it out on everyone around her.  I guess I wanted them to like me so bad but I'm slowly realizing that will never happen.

And to Chickie, when I'm having a bad day I like to go get a Subway sandwich and a bottle of peach tea and go to the dollar movie.  The theater is not as nice as the other ones around here but I love to do that.  When I go to the movies I forget about everything else.  But hey I go to the movies even when I feel great.  Also going outside and looking up at the sky seems to help my mood.  Although that could be because I relate the sky to flying and flying usually results in a trip, which I love to do as well.  Anyway my point - on the days that you're feeling like crap its helpful for me to do things like that.


Thanks, is that day for me.  A change of views would be helpful.

I have a question: The type of personality I have is one of a kidder....people love it.  There are some people, though, who take advantage of my sense of humor to say hateful remarks. I don't know why they do that to me. Hard to explain.

A friend of son's and DIL's, who did not know me from the past, a new friend, makes these passing insults to me out of the blue for no reason.  Last one was after he had been kidding around with me, out came an insult that stunned me and I didn't know what to say.  I walked away wounded.

This guy and his wife are so grateful to be included into the inner sanctum of our DIL and Son's life, that it seems like they want everyone else, including son's Mom and Dad OUT.   This is "close" DIL's friends.  Son and DIL are like little mini-stars of the city around here.

Can anyone tell me what is happening here? 


I wonder if your DIL has just told this guy bad things about you and he doesn't like you because of that.  That's a real possibility.  Also I know people like that.  They'll act like they're trying to be funny but insulting you at the same time.  My husband's sister's ex-husband was like that.  He was very competitive w/ my husband.  One time he said to me "so what are going to school to be now."  I took that as an insult because I wasn't changing careers, I was just furthuring my degree.  And then one time we were all at a dinner with several family members and my hubby (who has a stutter problem - but its getting better) said to everyone that he would get up and do karaoke in front of everyone and my ex-BIL said, "oh yea you'd get up there and sound like elmer fudd."  And then he imitated Elmer Fudd stuttering.  No body said a word, everybody just ignored it.  That really bothered my hubby and the fact that his sister didn't say a word.  I decided then that he was going to be jerk.  And this was right before they got married. Luckily they were only married for less than five years.

So I understand how that hurts.  But you know we can't control how people act or feel.  I'm slowly realizing in my 35 years of life that I'm still a good person even if some jerk says means things to me.  For me its so helpful to get out of the house and do something fun.  Something I'm thinking about looking into is getting a shih tzu and teaching her agility.  They have meets ever so often near where I live and I've watched them sometimes.  I just think that would be so much fun.  And I bet I wouldn't' be thinking about mean people in my life.  So I thinks it  important to get out and not think about our hurts so much.