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ILs visiting... feeling suffocated rant

Started by stilltrying2010, April 14, 2015, 07:02:28 pm

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My ILs have been here over 2 weeks... we have a low contact/strained relationship at best. Showed up a day before they planned and didnt give us an end date... She is a wonderful grandmother to her daughter's children but we are secknd best. We have provided all food, dinners (they choose to goout for lunch everyday). They are IMO enmeshed with SILs family. Looking for things for SILs kids txting calling numerous times a day. Whenever I am doing laundry (family of 4 onmy day off) MIL will suddenly have to do hers, helps her son cleanup suppers he cooks, compliments his dinner but literally walks away from table after done w my meals. Has not asked offered to watch our kids, attend any of their activities. Videoed me without my knowledge and posted it to facebook (eating a roasted marshmellow - literally I am in center of shot, thanks)Just feeling suffocated and uncomfortable in my own home. Tried stepping aside. Stayed home while they went to neighborhood carnival. She is in her glory then. Ive been sick. Didnt help me or offer to make dinner but when husband brought in take out going to fix my kids plates. Straw that broke me telling my 3 yr old not to bother me I was asleep. Seems like being nice but since my 9 yr old was with me not exactly valid. Just filled with anger, guilt, sadness.  I love my husband. I wish it wasnt this way.Every year they "visit" for 2-3 weeks... it is pure torture for me. They are negative about every thing. Insult the other kids/grandkids. Complain about everything. Saw a commercial for sonic half price shakes. Came back. Hated their whip cream (?) And hated that you had to eat in your car (Its a fastfood DRIVE IN!)

My husband says nothing. Offers complaints but I say I am not the person to be talking to this about. Says why worry about something I cant change. So I should have to suck it up and be excluded in.my own home? Rock a d hard palce. 4 more days...


I have to admit to being selfish, S. I would never allow such abuse to happen to me in my own home. No support from DS or DH is their choice, of course, and they aren't going to change. My choice would be to take a vacation or visit a friend, let the chips fall where they may and take whatever flack came from doing that. Then I would do it again (and again.)
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama



I would seriously have a talk with my DH after this was over and work out something with him.  He can do all the cooking, laundry, etc. while they are here while I go have mani/Pedi's, massages, dinner out with girlfriends, etc.  Any flack from MIL would be met with "Well you always seem to enjoy your time with DH but not me so much, so I'm giving you that opportunity" and off I would go to something else fabulous.

As much as I sympathize with you to have to deal with them, I truly think this is between you and DH.  If they are always like this, and yet you keep letting them stay for that long every year, then you know it's going to be like this.  I think you're very nice for doing this, but you can still be nice without being there next time. :)  DH will either step up and stand up for you when he has to deal with it on his own, or he will enjoy it and you will enjoy your time, or he will decide that 2-3 weeks is too dang long and do something about it.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


After much consideration and reading P's comments, I'm taking back the selfish part. :-)
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Green Thumb

I am glad you have this forum to vent. My former in-laws were like this. We set a lot of boundaries and made it as uncomfortable as we could when they stayed. This sounds horrible but they would not stay in a hotel and we had no guest bedroom and they insisted on coming during the school week. We told them that the 3 kids had a ton of homework so we could not kick them out of their bedrooms and we got up at 5 am because one kid started school at 7 am. Of course, the Narcisisstic MIL pooh poohed all this and then she stayed in the living room sleeper sofa and did not like our schedule and then forever stayed in a hotel. One time MIL was "so nice" to cook us dinner and she put wheat in the meatloaf even though three of us were allergic to wheat and I had other ingredients out which she did not use. We had eaten the meal before she told us proudly what she did and I about croaked. I got really upset and she did not like it.  We ended up divorced cause my ex husband did not fall too far from her tree.

You are going to have to either totally detach and stop caring or start to have strong boundaries with these people. It took me years to have better boundaries so I know this is not always easy. Your husband needs to be your partner in this and you are going to have to be firm with him. No more nice. Set boundaries. Three weeks is too long for me, I can only stand company for 3 days. Start preparing for next year after they have been gone this time for a few days. You might find your husband is happy to go along with your boundaries. When you grow up in this chaotic, naricissistic type family, you are taught that your feelings don't matter.  You have no say. Help him have a say.


I "sucked it up" like you for nearly 30 years with my inlaws.  To their credit, my inlaws were wonderful to both of our children and I don't regret that I put up with them for my husband and children's sake.  I do regret that my husband did not stick up for me and even more that I didn't stick up for myself. I could have put my foot down about many things, after all it was our home not theirs and our family and we had the right to do things our own way.  My complaints about my inlaws are much different than yours, but the dynamic sounds similar.  They were critical and disrespectful to me.  I think Pooh's and Luise's responses are perfect.  I wish I would have done more to take care of myself.  My MIL would have taken offense or pretended to take offense to my separating myself in that way, but Pooh's response "Well you always seem to enjoy your time with DH but not me so much, so I'm giving you that opportunity"  would  have been perfect.  I think that's what I wanted all along, was for my husband and children to have a relationship with them without me because although they seemed to enjoy having them around, I can't remember a time when it felt good for me. 
The end result of "sucking it up" all those years was that my inlaws seemed to like me reasonably well because my husband I allowed them to do whatever they wanted and say whatever they wanted to me, but I grew to dislike them very much.  So in the end I was the angry one with bad feelings about the relationship and they were not angry at all.  It doesn't have to be this way for you.  Speak up for yourself and do what you need to do to take care of yourself.