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How to communicate to your children that they need to help with holiday meals

Started by GalfromBrooklyn, October 16, 2011, 04:42:23 pm

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Yep, I know how my Sons are too and how much easier it is to say, "DIL said..." than own up to their own decisions.  That's why I believe that DILs and MILs should communicate directly in an ideal world.  But then I have learned here, that many women believe it is the DS's place to communicate with his FOO. 
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


Ruth - you have me laughing! That was so spot on!

I hope we haven't lost the Gal from Brooklyn!  Are you still there?


Yes Pooh, it is a tricky line to teeter on as to whether or not DS should communicate with FOO on behalf of DIL or if DIL and MIL should discuss things directly. IMHO, I believe that if it is regards to a joint decision then DS and DIL may want to have a joint conversation with ILs, then everyone is one the same page and there is no he-said she-said. If DIL or MIL is at a discord regarding a situation then they should handle it themselves as two adults. If DIL or MIL is uncomfortable with their feelings then perhaps it may be okay to first discuss with DS or DH about how to be able to have a rational conversation with MIL or DIL. I know sometimes if I have an issue and it is regarding my feelings, if I discuss it with FDH he can open my eyes to other insights that then subdue any tense feelings, sometimes we just need a different perspective.


Me and my DH run everything by each other, but I also have a DH that would communicate my wishes and not blame it on me, but say "We".  Makes a huge difference.

I too hope Gal comes back.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


I was just thinking about this b/c my MIL would not talk to me for the longest time.  I'd bring something up, she'd leave the room or change the conversation.  The reason why DH started talking to her is b/c of that exactly.  She didn't give him any better reaction -- cried, yelled, tantrums but she *did* at least acknowledge him which was better than me.

And, to be honest, DH does make most of the decisions in regards to his FOO.  For the most part I have very little input, I might pick out a gift or make a meal, but he is the one they talk to and invite or make plans through so the backseat has seemed more natural.

So, it's probably situational depending on so many things.  The general advice I've seen is that the adult child of the parent *should* know how to communicate with their parents by now, the relationship between adult child and parent should be relatively calm and strong enough to handle disagreement.  Perhaps the problems come in when the relationship isn't strong enough?  I do think it probably leads directly back to how well DS manages his own relationships and what the state of the DS/Mom relationship was before marriage.

Because really, when I think about DH having to talk to my father for me....well, I can't imagine not being able to talk to my own father about every day stuff.  And most of the time this is what it comes down too, it's asking a lot of a DIL to manage the relationship with MIL when her own son can't do it.  Not saying MIL is wrong or did anything, it's just not a good idea.
People throw rocks at things that shine - Taylor Swift


I see that.  I also see in my case, OS would say "Dil said.." to me, and tell DIL "Mom said..." to her.  It is a problem between me and OS, and DIL and OS.  The difference is I recognize it and would be the first to know OS was to blame.  DIL chooses to believe OS because she decided from the get-go not to have a relationship with our family.

So yes, I agree with you, it's situational and in your case, I would let DH do all the communicating with MIL too.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


True, DIL is probably going to believe DS no matter what, until such time it really does start to affect her.  It sounds like it is a one person problem though, a DS who has not developed relationship skills.  By having a DIL speak to MIL in these instances is almost just like putting a band aid on without actually treating the problem.

The worst part (and my DH did this too) is that sometimes they decide working on themselves is too much so they quit communicating altogether.  DH did this with MIL multiple times, his solution was just to bury his head in the sand.  And there was nothing I could do about it but I got all the flak, go figure lol.  Like I could make that man do anything, if I could he would be cleaning the house by now
People throw rocks at things that shine - Taylor Swift


Ha ha, yep.  I have always said that my OS is the main problem.  Either by choosing not to communicate with me, her or any family, or by allowing her to dictate what he will and will not do, either's on him.  It's a choice he's making.  I don't think she helps matters and makes it difficult on him, but it still lies with him.  I love my DH more than life, but if he told me not to talk to my Mom or family anymore without a valid reason, it would be on.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell

lancaster lady

My problem is that DS believes everything his DW tells him especially things that I have supposedly said , and still believes
her even though I tell him I didn't !
Why would his mother tell lies ! I grew out of playground tactics many years ago .


I don't know, Ruth - it IS close to Halloween.  Maybe we could try our hand at turkey resurrection?

-who needs to get some more coffee to replace what ended up on the monitor :D
This too shall pass.  All is well.


Ruth your post was hilarious. 

And I agree with whomever wrote that since DD doesn't want to rock the boat, take that as an offer for DD to roast the turkey and Gal to bring the desserts.


I've got a suggestion for you, GAL.  It just came to me with all this talk about the south...why don't you surprise them by bringing a "turkuckin" for TG?  I bet they'd wrestle over who gets to roast the turkey next year!  8)


You're a hoot, Ruth!   What a party that would be!  :o   Is west TX considered as part of the south?  Regardless, I'd still be southern as dm was from KY.  I loooove okra & collards, df dunked his corn bread in milk, & who doesn't like a country ham?!  We were visiting an a & u when he got arrested for making moonshine.  I love southern food, but I have to admit, I've never made turkuckin...   ;D

Keys Girl

Quote from: alohomora on October 17, 2011, 01:29:54 pm
OP - keep in mind the simple act of HOSTING is a big deal.

As a DIL, if I was hosting my DH's family for dinner on Christmas, and I had my kids, the very act of getting us all ready, getting my home ready, and preparing meals, decorating, planning, etc on top of the gift buying, etc. That is WAY more then enough. Does DIL work on top of all of this? Maybe put yourself in her shoes.

I was in those shoes for quite some time, and did it all, worked, communted, shopped, took care of my son, did the laundry, etc.etc. and hosted some elaborate meals for my ex-husbands FOO that I used to start planning 6 weeks earlier.  My ex never lifted a finger to "host" his FOO and at times would be busy "working" so the task of entertaining them and listening to their constant complaints of the rising price of bananas fell on my shoulders and he was happy to take the credit for any kind of appreciation that they had for the meals and visits.  Divorce is never a pleasant experience for anyone, but it brightened up my day when the "collateral damage" meant that my days of being in those pinching toes were over.

The comment reminds me of that commercial for Enjoli in 1980 (which probably raised so many expectations for those of us, now MILs who weren't born into the microwave age).

"Today I will be as happy as a seagull with a french fry." Author Unknown

forever spring

Thanks for the invite, Ruth. Love to party and help eating the turkey. There goes my diet .... again! I'll do the dishes because they are virtual! HA :)