Author Topic: Stressful event coming up  (Read 2928 times)

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Offline Pen

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Stressful event coming up
« on: March 25, 2010, 09:04:06 PM »
Hi, WWU sisters! Some of you might remember my story about being shunned at an event by DIL and her family. At that time I was devastated; really, really hurt. Another similar event is coming up, without DIL's family as far as I know, but with DS & DIL. Of course I'm keen to invite them to join us for dinner first, etc. etc. so we can spend some time visiting with them. We really miss DS. DH is wary. I'm not sure I'll be able to handle more treatment like we received before, but I guess I want to take the high road.

DIL has been acting nicer around us lately, but we haven't had very many opportunities to see them. This event is very important to DH especially. It used to be something he and DS shared. I was looking forward to it, but now that it's getting closer I'm starting to get nervous about being around DIL. She notices minute little details about us that are wrong in her eyes, things that I either don't notice or don't have time to deal with. If she mentions something and I try to laugh it off or make light of it, she thinks I'm making fun of her for being so fastidious. Actually, I've always admired fastidious people since I am so not one of them. I try my best, but there's always some stray something out of place :) My feeling is that she's looking for any excuse to hate us and to validate her desire to separate DS from his FOO. It's hard to just be myself with all this going 'round and 'round in my head!

I wish we could have an easy, fun relationship and be able to enjoy each other without all the stress. I also know that in the big scheme of things this is really small and insignificant compared to what others here are going through. But, it's on my mind and I could use some good sisterly support!
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

Orly

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2010, 09:21:27 PM »
Pen,
Why not let your husband decide on the dinner invite?  If this event is very important to DH, he may just want to see if it goes well without any pre-event angst.  If it goes well, you can always issue an invitation for coffee afterwards (if it isn't too late).

momX3

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2010, 10:05:07 PM »
Trust me, I know how you feel.  I have been around DIL's family on a couple of occasions where they whispered, ignored, or basically did not speak to me (or as you said "shunned").  I had never been made to feel so worthless. It was horrible.
I still get emotional when I look back at those times and think of how they treated me.

It is an awful feeling to know DIL will judge everything we say or do.

But.........since DIL's family will not be at this dinner, I think I might go with DH, DS, and DIL. 

It would be sad to miss this special dinner that has meant so much to DH and DS.
So maybe you can go prepared. Have some conversation ideas that are generalized and unspecific then she won't be able to take anything out of context. The good thing is that DH and DS will be present, so conversation may flow easier in a group setting versus "one on one" with DIL.

The main thing, you are reaching out and trying to show her that you are extending an invitation to include them in the things that are special to your DH and DS. You mentioned that she is acting nicer, so maybe she is trying to change her ways.


I support your feelings in the decision you make.
Sending you warm thoughts that all will go well.  :)

Offline Scoop

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2010, 05:45:31 AM »
Penstamen, I don't think you should invite them for supper.  It seems that your DIL is happier with the distance you have between you, and I think if you invited them for more, it would come off as pushy.  I'm only saying this because it sounds like you guys are taking baby steps in the right direction, and I think you should continue with baby steps for a bit longer.

If you think about it, less time with them means less opportunity for you do so something (anything) that will irritate DIL, and less opportunity for her to hurt you.  If you have more and more visits like this (her not irritated, you not hurt) it will get easier and hopefully, you can get to a position where you both have more confidence in your relationship that you can spend more time together, and thus more time with DS.

I know it stinks, but if you continue on the path of you irritating her and her hurting you, then you're headed towards cut-off, at least this way, you're making a sacrifice now, so that you can continue your relationship with DS.

Hopefully, you can get to a place where you and her can have a talk like Creme and her DIL have and figure out each other's buttons, and how to stop pressing them or reacting so strongly when your own buttons are pressed.

Scoop


Sassy

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2010, 06:38:22 AM »

From the why bite off more than you can chew department, IMHO, do go to the event, but skip the added stress of hosting a group dinner before.

Have a nice relaxing meal with DH ahead of time.  Write them a congratulatory note, or bring a small gift, wear a smile and tell them how proud you are,
to commemorate the achievement.

Picture yourself enjoying the event as a relaxed guest invited to celebrate, instead of a host inviting others to a celebration.


cremebrulee

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2010, 07:40:43 AM »
Hi, WWU sisters! Some of you might remember my story about being shunned at an event by DIL and her family. At that time I was devastated; really, really hurt. Another similar event is coming up, without DIL's family as far as I know, but with DS & DIL. Of course I'm keen to invite them to join us for dinner first, etc. etc. so we can spend some time visiting with them. We really miss DS. DH is wary. I'm not sure I'll be able to handle more treatment like we received before, but I guess I want to take the high road.

DIL has been acting nicer around us lately, but we haven't had very many opportunities to see them. This event is very important to DH especially. It used to be something he and DS shared. I was looking forward to it, but now that it's getting closer I'm starting to get nervous about being around DIL. She notices minute little details about us that are wrong in her eyes, things that I either don't notice or don't have time to deal with. If she mentions something and I try to laugh it off or make light of it, she thinks I'm making fun of her for being so fastidious. Actually, I've always admired fastidious people since I am so not one of them. I try my best, but there's always some stray something out of place :) My feeling is that she's looking for any excuse to hate us and to validate her desire to separate DS from his FOO. It's hard to just be myself with all this going 'round and 'round in my head!

I wish we could have an easy, fun relationship and be able to enjoy each other without all the stress. I also know that in the big scheme of things this is really small and insignificant compared to what others here are going through. But, it's on my mind and I could use some good sisterly support!


Hi there, my advice is go, and smile, and remember nothing else, but, the only reason people like this put you down verbally is because they are so insecure...they would really like to be like you....they know they can't, so they put you down to inflate they're own egos...keep remembering that, and smile...and if DIL thinks your smiling at her tell her "Yes, I am, but more so, b/c I missed you and it's so good to see you". 

Also, I'd follow your husband's cue on what he would best like to do and feel most comfortable doing. 

It does sound to me like you could win your DIL...I wouldn't be a door mat...treat her as you would treat anyone else who talked to you rudely....ask her why she said that....b/c it hurt your feelings and maybe your taking things out of perspective...and you'd like to be her friend...and make sure son and hubby is there...when you say it...

Bullies have no respect for people who take they're bull...so stand up for your rights, but in a nice way....talk it out right then and there, call them on they're bad behavior...maybe you could say, "Well, I'd really like to get to know you better and I think it's best if we discuss these issues so we understand each other better". 

If you think about it, we don't really know our DIL's....and when we start off on the wrong foot, everytime something happens, things escalate, b/c we take things out of perspective and get hurt and then angry...so, perhaps in understanding that, it imight help....

Good luck...and hugs
Creme

Offline Pen

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2010, 08:10:48 AM »
Thank you all for your very good advice. Part of me wants to rebel against the restraints DIL has imposed - what right does she have to put limits on how much time we spend with DS as a family?? - and part of me knows you all are right about limiting "facetime" until she feels more comfortable around us. That's the thing - I don't think she'll ever accept us. She's made it very clear that we're beneath her.

I feel like a two-year-old, wanting to scream "It's not fair!" because she and DS see her family every day. I never thought this would be our fate. DS has been very hurt by this too, and has let us know it's not us, it's her and her family's problem. Then why does it feel like our problem?

Perhaps I should let DH & DS work it out...I'm afraid to make a decision one way or the other. It's important that they enjoy the event and that DDD thinks the family was together and happy (she misses her brother and thinks DIL walks on water.) And I do need to "woman up" and not let her comments slide. I'm so afraid of botching it that I freeze, but DIL needs to know I'm worth better treatment. It won't be easy, 'cos I really don't like awkward situations and tend to avoid them if at all possible.

You all are the best :)
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

2chickiebaby

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2010, 08:33:35 AM »
Pen, it just makes me sad/sick for you and your Daughter. Bless her little heart!!  I know how hard this is.  It is doubly hard when it effects your loved ones.  At least your son is telling you it's not you.  Small comfort, I know.

I have hardly been able to say this much less feel it but here goes: when I was first admitted to the hospital, my husband called both sons. One son, who lives in another city was on vacation out of the country and could not be reached.  The other son, was on his way with his family for a small vacation.

They did not drop by the hospital, which was on their way.  In fact, they only came by 3 days after I got home at 9:00 in the evening.  Our son had called his Dad on the phone while away, I'll give him that. 

The DIL ( I used to call her CDIL, no more, though) came over too with their kids. We chatted pleasantries and I happened to look up at the TV, the DIL said: "let's go kids, let grandmother watch her TV program".

I said, "I wasn't watching it.  I glanced up at it"

Still, she stood and within a couple of minutes they left.  They had just gotten back from the movies. 

I have seen the way she treats her own father, who is alone and lives here in an apartment.  It's disgusting.  She is without a single doubt the most selfish person I've ever known.  They used me for years.  As long as she can use you, she will.  If she can no longer use you, you're gone. 

Offline Scoop

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2010, 08:41:01 AM »
Pen - I totally agree that you should let DH and DS talk about this.  You know how men are, they just seem to know how to talk to each other.

Scoop

Offline Pen

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2010, 09:24:17 AM »
Chickie, you deserve better than that. {{hugs}} I know we've been dealing with this treatment for quite awhile now, but it still shocks me. I'm so relieved that you are sounding more and more healthy every day.

Scoop, you're right. I will let it go, and let the guys work it out. My focus will be on having fun with the family and making sure DDD is comfortable.
Thanks for your thoughts.

Again, you are all the best!
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

cocobars

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2010, 11:44:12 AM »
Penstamen, I don't know how I missed this, but better late than never!  I just want to wish you the best and let you know I'm thinking and praying for you!  Crossing my fingers and toes too!

Feel that?  Hugging you!  OH! and PINGS!

Pulling all the stops ;)

Hope

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2010, 11:51:02 AM »
Pen,
I know what you mean about avoiding akward situations.  In the past, I would usually say something that is taken the wrong way, or just makes things worse - so I've gotten into the habit of just keeping quiet.  I think there is truth, though, in bullies not respecting you when you just "take it".  I haven't had much success in the "standing up for myself" department.  I hope I can grow from your experience along with you.  Love you, sister!

Offline luise.volta

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2010, 05:08:28 PM »
I agree on not hosting the pre-dinner but going to the event. And whoever said things like this are insignificant? Whatever concerns us is of concern. If you can be open and still sort of shield yourself...that's what makes sense to me. Sending love.

P.S. I am also far from being a neat-nick. I can't even make it out the front door in white pants!!!
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

cocobars

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2010, 01:16:08 PM »
Pen, I just wanted to tell you that your DS and DIL are missing out!  You have such a big heart, and that's something money will never pay for.  I know you know it too!  I can't get this off my mind this week and want you to know you are in my thoughts and my heart! 

Sending you lots of love and PINGS!!

Offline Pen

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Re: Stressful event coming up
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2010, 05:03:43 PM »
Thanks, Coco. There's a lot going on with people on this site; it's good to get perspective on my own stuff. I love that we're all here for each other! I'm feeling better and have decided to just let it ride for awhile. DH and I have a date tonight!
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb