Author Topic: It goes on and on....  (Read 7860 times)

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cremebrulee

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It goes on and on....
« on: March 07, 2010, 07:39:22 AM »
Well, I know I said, I'd never discuss this situation with my son again...however, he called today, and it wasn't planned on my part, but I asked him what I could do to make this situation better...and I told him that DIL sent back the birthday card and money I sent her.  Right away he got defensive, which, you must know, I understand...it's human nature to do so...he explained that she probably sent back the card b/c she was hurt and figured, why this card now?  He didn't know it happened...and I hope he doesn't mention it to her. 

We once again went round and round about situations that happened...for instance...when she got up and walked out of the resturant...while we were having our coffee....he said, she isn't like us...she never grew up with family and just simply doesn't like to sit around and talk after dinner....
I can understand that...however, don't most people do that?  He said his father and step mother like to do the same, but DIL does not. 

He also explained that at night, they always cuddle on the sofa, and usually fall asleep like that....that is just they way they are...and DIL doesn't mean to ignore me or realize she is whispering and not including me in conversation.

He also talked about the Tomboy comment I made which hurt my DIL...he said, he spoke with some other people about it and they told him, they would be offended if someone referred to they're daughter as a Tom Boy. 

I explained what a Tomboy means to me...and that some of the most beautiful models and movie stars in the world are tomboys...that a tomboy to me, is someone who loves sports, playing baseball, riding horses...yet, still enjoys dressing up like a girly girl...and when I said it, no malace was intended....that I marveled at how my GD was so happy, playing with the goats, in the pasture,  unafraid of the horses...etc....it was something I felt with pride at the time...and believe me, it wouldn't matter to me, if she was or wasn't...

He said, perhaps I was looking to see part of myself in my GD...I don't honestly believe I was...it was just something I felt at the time...

He said he believed there is a personality conflict since the beginning, one thing was said or done, and it simply escalated....

I told him I felt since the very beginning, his wife, has been trying to estrange him and my GD from me....he said that was crazy...

I was very calm, and told him that I am very sorry things went like this, it's not what I wanted to happen, and I wish like anything I could change it, and had not reacted to situations...but I did...and I'm sorry for that.

We talked about how, on my first trip to visit them, she went shopping with her sister...I didn't go, b/c I felt her and her sister needed time along together, and didn't need an old lady tagging along...besides, I hate shopping and couldn't have kept up with my knees being so bad.  Since then, I've had two knee replacements.  I explained to him, for them to leave me alone from 9 a.m. in the morning until after dark was very rude.  He said, knowing his wife, that when I said I didn't want to go along, she took it as a rejection...he's just guessing? 

We spoke about his wife's sister...and how when I got off the plane, they knew something was wrong...I told him, that the way that young girl presented herself to me being together for the first time was un-nerving...all she spoke about was how you use men, take em for everything they have, and dump them when your done....I told him, all the while she was talking, I thought of nothing but fear...if my DIL's sister is like that, they come from the same mold, what is my DIL like...?  When I got off the plane, I was so angry at that girl's attitude, I know it showed...big time...also, I was going thru a very very bad divorce at the time...wasn't myself, which is no excuse, but can tell you, I was really having a very hard time with it.

So, I asked him, please don't keep my GD away from me, and he got mad and said no one is doing that..I was the one who cut them off, why did I do that?  I explained that I couldn't handle it any longer, that it wasn't a snap decission, that I had been thinking about it for years....lest we forget, in the beginning when all this started happening...they did go to counseling b/c of me...b/c of the strain it was having on the marriage....she felt that my son though she was lying, and taking my side...I feel very very distressed about that.

Long story short, at this point in time, I told him I fear calling her, fear rejection, fear saying something wrong...but it's been 12 years and this is so foolish...so ridiculous...

I asked him why, when she and he were  out in the pasture, she asked him, shall I call your mom...and he said no...I asked him why did she have to ask him, and why didn't he say yes...I told him I would never ever reject her...but, I do know, that she doesn't know that about me...
She says, I hate her...and I don't...I hate how she treats me...he says...he's seen times when she's treated me very nicely, and she has...when he is around...

I asked him why she got up and walked out of my apartment years ago, and he said it was b/c I didn't hug her...I said, I didn't think she wanted me to.

and the conversation went on and on, and didn't end on a bad note...in the past, I have hung up on him and have gotten upset, b/c it seems he constantly excuses her behavior...defends rudeness...and it made me feel like he felt I was wrong, it was all my fault, etc.

He said how those jokes about MIL's hold some water...and I said, yes, it does, there are some very immature, dysfuncational mothers out there who treat they're DIL's very badly...however, there are also tons of MIL's/DIL's who get along famiously and genuinely love each other.

He bought up how my MIL used to drive me crazy, and I replied, yes, she did, and at times it was so upsetting...however, I would have never allowed it to get to the point that my DIL and son are now...family is important...I didn't tell him this, however, I did discuss the issue several times with my sister in law, and she told me, you know how controlling mom can be, you just have to start learning to say no...and stop worrying about hurting her...as she is interferring way to much.  I never did....I couldn't...and I believe it was b/c I knew she meant well...and didn't want to hurt her...she had a hard life raising her 3 brothers.

So, our conversation ended, that he asked me to let him think about it...and if I wanted to call her maybe I should...but I'm so afraid to...I want to and have had the phone in my hands so many times...but didn't...me, the tough guy, so afraid to call...so afraid of rejection??????? 

I have been wrong about things in my perception of my DIL perhaps...maybe she didn't do this to estrange my son from me?  I don't know?  I told him, a mother just knows...and that was an unacceptable answer to him....

So, was I wrong to discuss it with him?  Am I wrong to have hope...I keep telling myself to back off and let it play out, for they're sakes, cuz if anything, God forbide would happen to they're marriage, I don't want to be responsible for it....and that's the truth...I don't want them to have problems b/c of me...that is the last thing I want, and it hurts to know that they did in the very beginning, so much so, that they went to counseling..., that cuts deeply...

I told him, that this has been so painful...so upsetting, it's like a dark cloud that follows you around all day..everyday...and I  apologized to him for it happening, and for the things that  I did wrong and took wrong and got defensive about...I said, I was hurt and angry and I wasn't trying to degrade his wife, I was only trying to figure out why this was happening, to understand it, to make it better...I told him, that I don't even know you or DIL that you two are like stangers and that hurts...and I think all of this is so senseless, immature and foolish...why can't we just forget everything and move on...why can't she and I talk and just say to each other, I didn't mean to hurt you...

He mentioned me acting out in the car on the way back to the airport...well, I had given them some money, to help out with some things, and he kept trying to give it back to me...he bought some things and then tried to give me the rest of the money, I had explained to him, that it hurt when he kept doing that, and when he handed me the money in the car, it was like the last straw and I took the money and thru it on the floor and said..."I'm sick of all this attitude!"  I did that, b/c I was angry, hurt...the first day I was there, we got in the car all together, and my DIL yelled at my son b/c he answered her in a very tired manner...he was tired..he worked late and picked me up at the airport...well, she yelled at him and said, don't talk to me like that, I won't have this attitude, and it upset me, that she yelled at my son in front of me...I guess I was wrong...to feel that way...

He said when they walk out of a resturant together, DIL always takes his arm and they walk and talk...and I said, son, that was so rude...I couldn't keep up, you guys were back at the car and I was still crossing the street...it's rude to not include company or whoever you go out to eat with, that you walk together and talk?  He doesn't see it...

I feel so bad...did I create this problem...is this my fault...yes, I am sensitive and stubborn and I can't help but wonder if I have been wrong all along...?  I know I must take ownership in this, and must have hurt DIL's feelings at times...you all know, I'm very cut and dry, and do come off tough, and strict...how can I change that?  I've been this way for 61 years...and I have very strong institutions about rudeness...I work in an environment, that know matter what, you always contain yourself, you never act out, you talk things over...but we woman, can sometimes be so vindictive....and I can't help but wonder if this whole thing did start because of me...and not because she wanted to keep me out of they're lives...believe me, when I was younger, a lot of women didn't like me...I was very independent and didn't need to be part of a group...I was perfectly happy to go off by myself..not b/c I didn't like them or b/c I was antisocial..but b/c I loved being alone, and still do...however, I was taught when you have company, you extend yourself, and you may not always enjoy what your doing, but the point is, to make they're visit a memorable one...plus, we as a family did socialize alot, b/c our family was spread throughout the country, so when company/family came, they stayed two weeks a month...and we all got along famiously...my mother loved her inlaws...

I just don't get this...ok, yes, I was wrong, and probably did do a lot of things that hurt her....which also makes me fear being around her....??????

I do admit, I do fear her in a very big way...and maybe I'm weak, but I can't take the rejection any longer....


so, that's it...

thank you for taking the time to read...

Creme
« Last Edit: March 07, 2010, 07:53:57 AM by cremebrulee »

2chickiebaby

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2010, 07:51:23 AM »
Creme, Creme, Cream!! I wish I wasn't headed out right now.  Oh!! I'm so glad he called you!  What a wonderful thing this is!!!  He opened the door; he explained her side; it is all good!

I know you're afraid, I do.  But, just remember he called and you discussed it.  Maybe you should get a friend to come be with you while you call her. I would have someone with me just for support.  Your son sounds like he doesn't want this rift between you anymore.

It's a victory, Creme.  If she's cold at first, just be very kind.  Have a friend be with you when you call. :)

cremebrulee

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2010, 07:56:24 AM »
no Chickie...he's been calling me, ever since before he left for Afghanistan....we have been communicating for about 2 years, just him and I...I'm so sorry if I made you think differently...he calls me just about every week, and write me as well...

and I don't know why, I vowed, I'd never bring this situation up or talk to him about the birthday card, and honestly, didn't have it planned, I had asked about my GD and then, all of a sudden, it just started coming out...I didn't want to discuss it with him, b/c it's always such a heartbreaking issue...especially for him...

and chickie, the point is, I want to call her, but I don't...I'm very afraid to call her...I want it to all change...I will except the blame even if it's not my fault...this is just so stupid, so ridiculous...we women can really be brutal to each other sometimes...and my son, says, he's seen it...men can have a disagreement, and it's over forgotten, we women will take these thing to our graves....and quit honestly, I'm not like that...I am a very forgiving person, say what I must say, and then move on....yanno?
« Last Edit: March 07, 2010, 07:59:07 AM by cremebrulee »

Offline luise.volta

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2010, 08:31:34 AM »
I wouldn't call. That's just my take. He married a strange person from your perspective (and mine) and she probably isn't ever going to be any different. Your son can't explain her but she is his choice.

The cost is high but it seems to me the only thing you can do is have it be the way it is. Returning a card and a check is a small thing...but it is also monumental and irreversible. (And, for what it's worth, I see it as inexcusable.) It has left you afraid to pick up the phone. Look at that. Then why would you?

I wouldn't hope. I would certainly be there if she ever had a change of heart...but you can't change her heart, or even reach it if she has shut you out. It's her right, no matter how self-defeating it is.

Contact with your son is a many-spendored-thing. So many sons we have "met" on this site give up and back away. I'd just enjoy the crumbs thrown your way...sad as that sounds. He chose this, he supports it, he rationalizes it and probably it would be best not to challenge him further about it.

All of the above is extremely subjective...and I admit, protective of you. Take it with a grain of salt but/and know that it was written with love.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline Barbie

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2010, 08:52:46 AM »
In my opinion, you need to put the past behind you and never bring it up again, I know, it's easier said than done but it's your only option if you want this to work. Remember she's always going to say and do things that will annoy you and you'll just have to ignore it, she's not going to change her ways, it's you who is going to have to put up with all her rudeness, etc., if you can do that, then by all means be the bigger person and call her, maybe in time she'll meet you halfway, don't count on it though, you also have to be prepared for another heartbreak, after twelve years, are you sure you want to go through that again?

cremebrulee

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2010, 09:28:20 AM »
Louise...I always always appreciate your input...so, thank you kindly for taking the time to reply...I'm going to think about this...not something I can go do right away...but do see your point of view and why...thank you, hugs...

Guest1....yes, your right, and I don't know why I bought it up...to go round and round on this is senseless...and it only stirs up heartache...I think now, knowing what I know...being stronger, and through the counseling of you women...I believe I can ignore what she says and does...
and perhaps I have been wrong, perhaps, we both took things as a personal attack?  Thank you, and big hugs Guest 1 and Chickie....

To both of you, I just got off the phone with my girlfriend...she is a very forgiving person...she suggested to write her an email...and said, I have nothing left to loose by writing her and if she doesn't reply...so be it? 

I may do that...however, I'm not going to bring up the past...I'm only going to suggest we both try and go forward...and I want her to know, that I don't hate her...she keeps telling my son that I do...as I feel she hates me to....

I don't know, what to do, what to do...


2chickiebaby

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2010, 10:32:23 AM »
Gosh, everyone has a different way of looking at it, Creme and I know exactly what they're talking about.  You're damned if you do and damned if you don't.

If you don't have a relationship with that wife, you won't have much of one with your son, though.  It just works that way when you have a son.  At least that's what one of my DILs said to me.  Relationship with him is only through her, according to my DIL.  Take that for what it's worth.  I don't know what to tell you.  I wish I did.

You'll do the right thing...whatever is right for you.  Please tell us what happens and we're pulling for you. 

Offline luise.volta

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2010, 10:58:51 AM »
About five years ago, when I had my last impasse with someone close, (a friend of 25 years)...it was email based. When I talked with Kirk, (who is a licensed counselor and ordained minister,) about it later he told the that my only chance would probably have been one-on-one. Letters whether snail mail or email are unilateral communications without the benefit of body language, tone of voice, eye contact or the exchange of energy fields. The result is that they are extremely easy to misinterpret.

My situation was not similar to yours since if involved her sharing a confidence with me after agonizing over it for 25 years...and then creating a permanent break in our friendship because she couldn't stand my knowing about it. Pretty much a catch 22...but I do remember Kirk's feedback, after the fact. When he said that, I contacted her and set up a meeting...but she came armed with printouts of my emails all marked up with highlighter and it was a lost cause for the reasons given above.

There probably isn't a right thing to do. My mom used to say, "Sometimes you have to choose between wrong and wronger." I am heavily prejudiced in your favor, keep that in mind, and I also have a nasty little streak in me that wishes she would have drawn the mean-mother-in-law card. Shame on me! (Why am I smiling?)

Sending love.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2010, 12:04:51 PM by luise.volta »
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

2chickiebaby

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2010, 11:06:10 AM »
Luise, I've seen that happen too..a person tells you something confidential and then makes you an enemy because they told you. 

Regarding the mean streak...boy! I wish I had a teaspoon of that!!  I am just a sitting duck out there.

I wish some of the DILs out there would put their views into Creme's delima.  Maybe they will. It's a tough one and a life changer.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2010, 11:19:00 AM »
 ;D I can be a mean-thinking sitting duck!   ;D
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

2chickiebaby

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2010, 11:23:54 AM »
wow....I missed that gene.

Postscript

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2010, 11:35:27 AM »
I feel so bad...did I create this problem...is this my fault...yes, I am sensitive and stubborn and I can't help but wonder if I have been wrong all along...?  I know I must take ownership in this, and must have hurt DIL's feelings at times...you all know, I'm very cut and dry, and do come off tough, and strict...how can I change that?  I've been this way for 61 years...and I have very strong institutions about rudeness...I work in an environment, that know matter what, you always contain yourself, you never act out, you talk things over...but we woman, can sometimes be so vindictive....and I can't help but wonder if this whole thing did start because of me...and not because she wanted to keep me out of they're lives...believe me, when I was younger, a lot of women didn't like me...I was very independent and didn't need to be part of a group...I was perfectly happy to go off by myself..not b/c I didn't like them or b/c I was antisocial..but b/c I loved being alone, and still do...however, I was taught when you have company, you extend yourself, and you may not always enjoy what your doing, but the point is, to make they're visit a memorable one...plus, we as a family did socialize alot, b/c our family was spread throughout the country, so when company/family came, they stayed two weeks a month...and we all got along famiously...my mother loved her inlaws...

Creme I can see blame on both sides here, mostly though a lack of communication.  Both of you are perceiving different things as rude and either reacting outwardly or holding on to them.  You and your daughter in law are different types of people.  I'd venture to guess that the only thing you have in common is that you are the mother of her husband. 

Different generations have different attitudes, for example I don't see it as rude for her to take her husbands arm and walk with him, but I agree they should have walked at your pace and included you, where you are putting the blame for that on her (or seem to be I could be very wrong) I think your son had a part to play in that too.   The same with them snuggling on the couch.  He has the power to include you and he should.
 
As for her yelling at your son, that is between them and while I personally don't believe in reigning my husbands attitude in, in a public setting, she apparently has no such inhibitions.  You excuse your son because he was tired and had picked you up at the airport.  Perhaps your daughter in law was tired too and she was at the airport as well.  He is an adult and he doesn't need you to get upset for him or take any action.  Presume you have equipped him for life with the power to defend himself if and when he finds it necessary.  In other words, don't hold what is essentially between them, personally.

Giving money to adults can say many things, especially when it's for no apparent reason other than to help out.  Giving me money is implying I need it, can't take care of myself and my family, it's pride I suppose.  Your son tried to give it back, then tried to give you the change.  The fact he did it several times, says to me it embarrassed him and while you were hurt, I don't think your display took his feelings into account.  Think of it as a learning experience for yourself and look at how you could handle it differently in the future.  I also wonder why it's ok for you to throw money and have a little public attitude when you find it rude for your daughter in law to do so?  Forgive me but that seems something of a double standard.

I think the biggest hurdle to getting over a rift is that somebody has to take the first step and apologize.  I'm sure that your daughter in law feels you owe her an apology and you probably feel the same, for all the hurts and slights etc.  It's not so much being the bigger person, it's taking ownership and that first step, it's an apology for your part in the degeneration of the relationship.  Don't expect to get one back, an apology should be unconditional, unreserved, meaningful and specific.  An apology is the beginning of healing, it isn't the solution.  Communication needs to be opened and it has to be in a manner acceptable to both parties.  As my father used to say wishing and doing are two different things, wishing doesn't get it done.

I hope you don't take this as an attack, it isn't meant to be.  I am trying to offer you some different perspectives, food for thought.  I admire your desire to make a change and wish you well in your efforts should you summon the courage to contact her.

cocobars

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2010, 11:37:26 AM »
Creme, I'm so sorry you are agonizing over this.  I'm afraid I'm stumped.  I wouldn't know what to do either.  I "think" I would wait if it were me.  At least until your son came home and had a little time to settle back in.  I'm not sure of that, but that's what I "think" I would do.

What a heartbreak, but I really do agree that it's a good sign.  Holding all that in for so long is never good for anyone, and I'm hoping that ends up proving to be an important conversation.

Keep your chin up and let us know what you decide.  Hugging you!

Offline luise.volta

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2010, 11:52:10 AM »
Chickie - Yeah, I know. You missed out on the mean streak!  ;D
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

cremebrulee

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Re: It goes on and on....
« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2010, 11:53:01 AM »
Quote
2chickiebaby link=topic=488.msg9201#msg9201 date=1267986743]
Gosh, everyone has a different way of looking at it, Creme and I know exactly what they're talking about.  You're damned if you do and damned if you don't.

yes, and I do so want it to work out...I do...

Quote
If you don't have a relationship with that wife, you won't have much of one with your son, though.  It just works that way when you have a son.  At least that's what one of my DILs said to me.  Relationship with him is only through her, according to my DIL.  Take that for what it's worth.  I don't know what to tell you.  I wish I did.


You are absolutely right, and this is the part my son refuses to see....and I can understand why he doesn't...and thanks Chickie...it's a tough call

Quote
You'll do the right thing...whatever is right for you.  Please tell us what happens and we're pulling for you.


thanks so much and many hugs
for listening...