November 30, 2023, 10:06:52 AM


"Welcome to -- When adult children marry and leave home, life can sometimes get more complex instead of simpler.  Being a mother-in-law or daughter-in-law can be tough.  How do we extend love and support to our mothers-in-law, adult children, daughters-in-law, sons-in-law, and grandchildren without interfering?  What do we do when there are communication problems?  How can we ask for help when we need it without being a burden?  And how do our family members feel about these issues?  We invite you to join our free forum, read some posts... and when you're ready...share your challenges and wisdom."

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Messages - Bamboo2

So glad to hear this, Teardropper!!  Before you know it, you will have a string of good days and it won't seem so remarkable to have one.  We are all here for each other, and that is the beauty of this site.  No one is the expert - we just share and care.  Keep it going  :D
Hi Teardropper,
I, too, had an 18 year old who wouldn't give me the time of day once she had moved out and we decided to cut her off financially.  At first I begged and pleaded and accepted all kinds of negative treatment just to have a relationship.  But what kind of relationship was it?  Not one grounded in mutual respect, but one where I was choosing to be used and manipulated.  When I finally figured out I deserved respect, too, knowing I'd done my best as a parent and a pretty good job at that, I decided not to take the poor treatment anymore. The ladies on this website have been instrumental in helping me to see that. Things have come full circle for us - as she did realize I was serious.  I hope this will be your situation, too.  The future is a question mark, but today is yours to choose how to find joy, with or without your son.

All the best to you!
With regard to your thread title, as Luise often says, you can't make sense of the senseless.  Sounds like DIL just isn't trying to maintain a relationship.  That seems really challenging for you and your husband.  In my case, I was glad to not see my daughter if she was going to act rude in my presence.  Who needed that?  I didn't have to deal with the negativity and could enjoy my time more instead of fuming about her disrespect.  The thing that was hard to get over was comparing the infrequency of her visits to the close relationships of my friends/relatives and their daughters.  Things only got better when I stopped the comparison and just realized she was on a different path.  I could still choose to enjoy my time with the people who wanted to be in the same room with me and cared about me.  Fortunately when I looked around, there were lots of people like that.  So my daughter wasn't one of them -  oh, well.  Actually, I did have a lot of pain for a long time, but when her disrespect finally made me mad enough, I was ready to call her on it and accept whatever the consequences were - even if she permanently wanted to end our relationship.  I was confident that I'd been a "good enough" parent and whatever I'd done for her had been out of great love.  She would have to decide how to treat me.  It sure sounds like you have gone above and beyond for your son and DIL and you've been putting up with some lousy treatment in return. 
Ouch, Lancaster Lady!  That gotta hurt.  It sounds like what your son wanted and what he got for his birthday were two different things.  The things he must have to put up with...

While you say "she knows" you will always be there for your grandchildren, THEY also know that, and isn't that what matters most?
Hi M,
Welcome! I agree with Luise about changing your user name.  I will also delete your signature line in your post.  We stay anonymous to protect ourselves and our loved ones. 

As Luise mentioned, we don't give advice here.  When I had issues with my adult daughter, I enlisted the support of a therapist, and it was the third one I saw who gave me the best help. 

Like you, I spent a lot of time trying to communicate with a daughter who didn't respond to me.  I was desperate to hold on to any semblance of a relationship, and apologize for anything and everything.  She continually rejected me or gave me the cold shoulder.  Finally I stopped chasing her, and backed off.  I changed the dynamic, and put myself first.  She slowly began to reconnect.  There were a lot of steps forward and backward, but I stopped making her my everything - which was healthier for both of us. 

Wishing you well...
I had some of that disappointment you speak of when my daughter got involved with a troubled BF, too.  His single mom enabled him to laze around after dropping out of HS and work occasional jobs until he'd get fired or just not show up.  He took advantage of both his mother and my daughter - with their permission, of course.  I still had to be careful not to be critical of them to my daughter, even though I had plenty I wanted to say, and sometimes DID say.  I didn't want to alienate my daughter or force her to take sides against me, which she actually did anyway, but I didn't want to give her any more reason to choose his family over ours.  There was a lot of letting go of expectations, hopes and dreams on my part.  The grief was enormous.

Having said all that, to my eyes, your future DIL sounds like a rock star in comparison.  She has completed a training program and seems to want a better life for herself.  She helped support her single mom by taking care of her sister. Your son seems like someone you can be proud of, independent and caring.   I'd focus on those strengths of this couple as they look toward their future together. 
So wonderful to hear about the breakthrough with your son.  Yay!! It was great that he took ownership of their problems and saw through her blame game.   Thanks for sharing  😊
So happy to hear that, Shiny!  Thanks for the great article   :D
So goes the roller coaster of emotions that I've been through, too.  My situation isn't quite the same, but I did tell my daughter that we just couldn't hear any more about her BF or his family anymore.  It was too upsetting and I just didn't want to have that in my life.  I finally figured out (with the support I got here on WWU) that I deserved a peaceful life.  That is what you are giving yourself by un-friending DIL's relatives.  Likely DIL would find something else to be upset about, but that's not your problem.  You're taking care of you.  Your son wanting peace is his to figure out, not yours.  He married her.  You didn't.  I didn't pick my daughter's BF either, so I didn't have to put up with him or his family.  No explanation, justification or apology  necessary.  And to the question, "How do you win in this situation?" I think you "win" when you decide that you just don't care what she thinks, says or does because you realize that taking care of yourself is the only thing you have control of.

That's great news, Cece!  Thanks for sharing it!  Some MILs here have found that their sons will still keep the relationship going with their moms but they are sometimes pulled in two different directions.  Hope things go well for you.  All the best  :)
Welcome, Cece. We ask all new members to go to our HomePage and under Open Me First to read the posts placed there for you. Please pay special attention to the Forum Agreement to be sure WWU is a fit for you. We are a monitored Website.

First of all, let me say that I feel this is a time for you to be kind to yourself.  You have been through a lot, and I imagine you're doing the best you can.  Having a close friend who has lived with cancer, I witnessed how it really took a toll on her emotionally and physically.  My friend had to learn to take care of herself first - not always easy for us women to do.  In order to do that, it has meant saying no to people and listening to her "gut", as she is focusing on keeping herself as healthy as possible.  Sounds like you may have said yes to things you really didn't want to do for your son and DIL.  But all those things you've said yes to have perhaps only taken energy from you, and healing is the focus now.  I've learned from my relationship with my adult daughter that being at her beck and call only made me resentful and caused me to expect something back in response, even if it was only gratitude.  It also didn't make her have to solve her own problems herself if I continually came to her rescue.  And she learned she could treat me like dirt and I'd accept it.  I don't have grandkids, but if I did, I wouldn't want them to witness my daughter treating me poorly.  I wouldn't want that for you, either.

Wishing you well.  (((Hugs)))
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Difficult AD
April 06, 2018, 12:16:57 PM
Good for you to close the bank of Mom.  We did the same thing when it was clear that it was an expectation and there was no appreciation.  We even made a list of all we had paid for over a year's time - boy did that make our daughter mad.  We held firm.  We had been good and generous parents, just like you. Guilt trips, silent treatments , that's what we got in return. The women here helped me stay strong.  In your shoes I'd be careful not to say anything about that BFs family helping her since they have such a close relationship. If you just approach your decision not to support her financially as giving her the opportunity to learn how to manage money (as we all had to do in our young adulthood), there will be one less thing for her to get angry about.  I've done it both ways but I had to learn to keep my resentment to myself. My daughter was pretty tight with BFs mother while they were living together,  which nearly destroyed me, but I finally got past that as I chose to not hear about her or their relationship anymore.  Then I started focusing on my time with DH and ways to enjoy our post-parenting time.  There is a life after parenting 😊
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Difficult AD
April 05, 2018, 06:18:06 PM
Hi SuzyQ,
I'm glad you found us, too.  So sorry about what you are going through.  I have an AD who also did things that made me miserable for a while.  She played emotional games and I sometimes just got sucked right in.  Not healthy dynamics.  After enough rudeness on her part, I finally figured out that I did not deserve that treatment and let her know that.  The relationship was strained, and like your situation, my daughter gravitated toward her BFs family, who all thought she walked on water.  They didn't give her any rules or consequences as we had at our home.  Anyway, I let her know what I would accept and not accept and I stopped bending over backwards to help her or give of myself.  There was a period of no communication, as she hadn't thought she'd done anything wrong, or just would not face it, but eventually things got better and we moved forward.  She is the type to hold a grudge, so I never knew what to expect, but I trusted it would all work out either way.  I felt I had to be willing to lose the relationship if it meant keeping my self-respect intact.  Scary thoughts, but to have a relationship where she walked all over me was just not good for me and only served to make me angry and resentful.  I deserved a peaceful life, and you do, too.  (((Hugs)))
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Easter
March 31, 2018, 01:18:36 PM
Yay  :)  So happy to hear this news, G!  Life is certainly full of surprises.  We're all celebrating with you!!
Welcome, SP.  I'm going to come at it from a different perspective, one that I'm going through with my 20 year old son.  This may not at all be the case with your daughter.  My son has never initiated saying he loved me, and only initiated hugging me when he was little.  I thought it was an extended adolescence, or lack of attachment from being adopted, or just being a boy or introverted or non-expressive...I always hoped he'd grow out of that. Now I'm beginning to realize that he may be on the autism spectrum and just uncomfortable with physical contact and expression of emotions.  Some people with this condition don't express their love verbally more than one time in their whole relationship, even in a marriage, because they feel it's redundant. One thing that has changed for me is to realize there are different ways to show care for one another.  With my son, I might be reaching for small things, but I've been able to recognize his small gestures and thank him for them.  He will reciprocate when I give him a hug and/or "I love you" now, and I know it is not natural for him so I don't do it every time I see him.  But it does make me feel good that he reciprocates.  One useful book that describes different ways to show love is called The Five Love Languages. 

As I said, this may not apply to your situation with your daughter at all, and there may be more to your story besides a lack of showing affection, but as always on this forum, please feel free to take what you need and leave the rest.  Wishing you well.  Here's a hug  (((Hug)))