Author Topic: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's  (Read 5975 times)

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stressedout1

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Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« on: February 03, 2011, 07:04:06 PM »
 I have been reading this site and there are so many people going through the same thing!  Advice needed from MIL's and DIL's point of view.  I have been married for 10yrs-2 small kids. Long story short. My MIL has been giving me silent treatment for over 6months since I confronted her on her behavior.  The straw that broke it was she lives out of state and last summer when came to visit she once again put a guilt trip on my husband for not attending a family bday party.  It was our anniversary weekend and we celebrated by taking kids to ballgame.  Also, 2yrs ago my daughter was baptised and she refused to acknowledge her special day because we did not plan it around her. Husband asked her why no card or gift an and she told him looking for special gift and then she keeps telling him she would send one.  She finally said she was upset because we should hve planned it around her.  But she sill never has sent her anything.  What happens next big thing in kids lives?  Again would she ignore them because it was not around her? 
  I did email her about her behavior and how she can't put guilt trips on husband and that we have never had good relationship.  He is the baby and I think she had a hard time letting go and realizing thathe has his own family now.  She never has spoken directly to m e about the kids and our plans when she is home and always speaks to husband instead.  And then she gets mad because we have other plans.  My BIL/SIL are also giving us silent treatent due to I offended their mom.  I did email her back and apologize and she told husband I was not sincere. WTF!  I don't know what to do.  I would love to work things out but she refuses to talk to me and told husband that she would not have anything nice to say to me.  Now she is coming to visit .. Please help

Offline Pen

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2011, 07:19:17 PM »
Welcome, Stressedout1. It sounds like you've got a bit of a self-centered MIL on your hands. I'm so sorry to hear this, but you're in the right place for some good support and advice.

I'm guessing you let her know why you didn't attend the family party? She should have remembered it was your anniversary, but if she's a bit self-involved it may have slipped her mind.

Is she staying overnight? If so a hotel might be a good option...for her comfort, of course  ;)

When you're together face to face will she talk to you?
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

stressedout1

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2011, 07:35:40 PM »
 MIL has all her family here so she has always stayed with someone else. She also brought up to her son on she should be invited to stay w/us when she visits.  No way in hell!!  I told husband that I or the kids won't have ais nything to do w/her since she obviously won't talk to me.  She is always the victim and nothing is never her fault.  I refuse to have my kids around someone who puts them on guilt trips.  Husband did tell her that she needs to have relationship w/us in order to have one w/kids.  Funny thing is husband/ agrees w/me on alot of points I made about her but when it comes down to it... will he sti?ck up for me?  These were his issues to and MIL/BIL/SILthink I created all the drama.  And husband doesn 't like to alk about it and hates confronting his mom because he does not want to hurt her feelngs.  What is a girl to do?  And how can I just move on?

Offline luise.volta

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2011, 07:53:41 PM »
Not wanting to hurt someone's feeling sometime hurts others. It's also a good excuse for non-action. Be your own advocate, knowing that you aren't the bad guy here. Sending love...
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline Pooh

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2011, 08:21:37 AM »
Welcome stressedout1 and so sorry you are having issues.  Even though you are affected, it is on your DH to take a stand.  If he is saying these things to you, then he should be saying them to her.  Has she actually used guilt trips on your children or is that just an assumption she will as they get older because she does it to DH?
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell

holliberri

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2011, 08:33:49 AM »
I think DH needs to take a stand. Silent treatment/not talking nice to my wife? No visiting, even if she's in town visiting everyone else.

I'm not an advocate of the cut-off method...but it sounds like she's trying to cut you off.

Offline Pen

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2011, 08:54:18 AM »
It probably isn't personal in that your MIL would likely have hated any DIL who married her DS. Small comfort, I know.
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

seasage

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2011, 09:23:32 AM »
My MIL has been giving me silent treatment for over 6months since I confronted her on her behavior.  The straw that broke it was she lives out of state and last summer when came to visit she once again put a guilt trip on my husband for not attending a family bday party.  It was our anniversary weekend and we celebrated by taking kids to ballgame.  Also, 2yrs ago my daughter was baptised and she refused to acknowledge her special day because we did not plan it around her. Husband asked her why no card or gift an and she told him looking for special gift and then she keeps telling him she would send one.  She finally said she was upset because we should hve planned it around her.

Welcome stressout, welcome to WWU.  Your story is slightly familiar.  But there are several things I don't understand.  First, what does it mean to say "we should have planned it around her"?  Was she there?  Or was it that she couldn't come?


I don't know what to do.  I would love to work things out but she refuses to talk to me and told husband that she would not have anything nice to say to me.  Now she is coming to visit .. Please help

Why is she coming?


Tara

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2011, 10:19:46 AM »
Welcome Stressed Out. 

You will find alot of support here.  I'm in agreement with Holliberry and not a fan of the cut off method of working things
out in families.  Having said that I'm learning here on this site that an important element in the equation is DH. I hope he will
be courageous enough to speak up in a supportive and compassionate way to his Mom

Mariatobe

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2011, 10:39:30 AM »
I also agree with Holli, DH needs to say, if you can't be civil to my wife, I guess none of us will see you on your visit.  She sounds like a narcissist.  Also, its not just you, she is using your daughter as a weapon, then lying about it.  Not good.

On a side note, my MIL talks to me EXTREMELY infrequently.  She goes through my DH for everything.  One time she wanted to take the kids on a 10 day trip that would have required a plane ride. NEVER asked me about it even though I'd talked to her the day before.  Only asked DH, then he thought I was being spiteful when I said He** no!  If she doesn't have the decency to bring up something like that to their mother, there's no respect.

Offline Scoop

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2011, 11:00:55 AM »
Stressedout - you have several problems here.  First off, you have to really *get* that you are the only person you can change.  You can't change DH and you can't change MIL.

So, you have to stop e-mailing MIL.  You just cannot tell 'tone' from an e-mail.  Also, many people of the older generations don't see e-mail as a valid form of communication.  They just don't.

You can't tell MIL not to guilt-trip your DH.  That's between them.  You can point out the guilt trip, and you can tell DH that you're not falling it.  You can make a joke of it, as in "Pack your bags!  MIL is sending you on a guilt trip!" but that's about it. 

Also, she can say whatever she wants, but you don't have to act on it.  A good way to remind yourself is, after she makes a request wrapped up in a guilt trip, add on (in your head) "yeah, and people in the Hot Place want ice water".

You can't expect gifts from her.  She doesn't *HAVE* to buy anything for your kids.  You can however draw the line at favouritism, saying "No MIL, you didn't buy anything for OlderKid's birthday, so we can't accept anything for YoungerKid's birthday, that wouldn't be fair."

If she ignores the kids and their celebrations, then it's her choice.  "Oh well MIL, too bad you can't make it, we'll see you when we see you then!"  You don't have to sugar-coat it or lie to your kids about it.  She will reap what she has sown.

Don't wait for DH to stand up to her for you, stand up to her yourself.  If you're feeling generous, tell him that if he doesn't say something, you will.  So that at least he's had a warning.

I have 2 book recommendations for you:

The Dance of Anger by Harriet Lerner  - You're angry for a reason, your feelings of anger are valid, what are you going to do about it?

Toxic In Laws - This will hopefully help you to STOP emoting for your DH and to stop the triangulation.

Again, I don't want to seem like I'm attacking you, but you're here, and you're the only one you can change.   And it sounds like you really need to change your expectations regarding your MIL.

Tara

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2011, 12:52:48 PM »
Scoop, I'm glad that you brought up the email issue.  I have a feeling  that if my DIL and I had stopped emailing
and talked that we could have worked things out.  When we gave talked in the past it went well...It was Creme who first brought it
to my attention how many things can be misintrepreted incorrectly.

also, I have made so many mistakes as a MIL looking back.  It really is a learning curve if you haven't had a great
family to role model for you.  I so recommend speaking up  in a calm, kind and respectful way and
then taking a time out to collect oneself if goes poorly. 

holliberri

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2011, 01:01:04 PM »
E-mails definitely don't work. I also think they're a terrible format for a  sincere apology. If you're going to do it and mean it, then do it right, in person, or at the very least a phone call.

After 3 years of on/off talking with my mom...no wait...4 years...we figured it out. No e-mails. Nothing gets understood correctl. It has been a blissful 12 months...we haven't fought once. We never fought before she had an e-mail address either.

FYI: I was definitely the e-mail aggressor of us two.

overwhelmed123

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2011, 01:05:29 PM »
I agree about emails and it always boggles my mind when people say they had a text message conversation with their MIL and they sound surprised that it ended badly.  Emails, texting, anything like that while attempting to engage in delicate subject matter is never a good idea!

Offline luise.volta

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Re: Advice needed from MIL's & DIL's
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2011, 04:33:43 PM »
Unilateral monologues... :(
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama