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In defense of SOME MIL'S!

Started by JaneF, November 19, 2012, 08:57:09 pm

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Hello once again.  Notice in my subject line I said SOME MIL'S!  I have seen from reading here it is quite common for their to be an issue with one side of the family being left out.  Usually, but not always, it is the DIL'S family that gets to share in the family things, while her husbands side is totally excluded (as in my case).  I must say in my defense as a mother in law that it isn't always the MIL'S fault.  I know there are cases where they are a problem.  My ex husbands mother was one of my best friends, and I was blessed to be able to help care for her when she was dying of cancer at age 62.  My husband also liked her a lot and did things for her!  (he is a wonderful man).  My husbands mother is a different story!  DIFFICULT to deal with, and sadly even though I tried to help care for her (dementia), she got it in her head I was stealing her bible book mark, and lotion...oh dear.  So I gracefully bowed out so as not to cause her upset, because to her that was truth (even though she is driving neighbor lady nuts by calling police constantly accusing her of stealing her towels!).  Sad.  Anyway, back to my point about in my defense as a MIL...my oldest son had a child 11 years ago with a lady he wasn't married to.  She and I get along beautifully!  Always have.  I am invited to school plays and programs, baseball games, and ALWAYS birthday parties.  I get school photos as well.  I am allowed to take him camping for lengths of time or have him just come overnight to visit.  He has a little sister (she is not my biological grandchild), and I treat her exactly the same...ALWAYS!  I get the same invitations with her, and she has no idea I am not her real grandmother.  She is 5 years old.  My point is there are good and bad with MIL'S as well as DIL'S.  My oldest son is now with a lady that has children from a previous marriage.  We also get along fine, and I give those children Christmas gifts as well.  They are coming for the holidays.  When my daughter was married to first husband I also invited his family for things to make them feel a part of our family.  I think if people would just try to treat others like they like to be treated it would be a great improvement.  Maybe this is why I may have been so dumbfounded by the way my DIL and her family treat us...I just don't understand why it has to be that way when there could be a tiny bit of compromise by all involved.  I guess some folks are able to be fair and reasonable and kind, while others do not have the ability.  My own mother is a very mean, cold, selfish person.  I just chose to NOT be like her because it is hurtful to be treated that way.  Blessings to all of you, and thanks for allowing me to rattle on!   J


QuoteUsually, but not always, it is the DIL'S family that gets to share in the family things, while her husbands side is totally excluded (as in my case).

My case too.  However, Dr. Phil says that if you are "mean" to someone or try to exclude them, it will come back to bite you in the behind.  And that is what happened in our situation.  Our now ex DIL remarried and is treating her FOO the same way she treated us (she apparently has bonded with her new husband's family).  So the family who always saw the grandchildren at every holiday (and the holiday stretched for days leaving no time for us) rarely see the grandchildren.  You see, our ex DIL not only "left" our son but also "abandoned" her children.  We still don't see our grandchildren as often as we would like but we are not excluded anymore.  Our son, in good conscience, makes sure his children see their "other" grandparents, although it may not be for holidays as before.  Funny, I don't feel "redemption"; I just feel "sad" for the family of our ex DIL.  There is no joy in what appears to be a "just reward".


JaneF - it just goes to show you that we are dealing with the same kind of people.  I completely agree with you about the idea that a little bit of compromise (or effort) would make a world of difference!

As for your grandkids, they *ARE* all your *REAL* grandkids!  I'm so glad that you're not showing favouritism and that you're so welcoming to all of the little children.

Take care of yourself JaneF and focus on these people who appreciate you!


Thank you scoop...I will do just that!  A few of my grandchildren are due to arrive any minute to spend a few days here...hooray!  My daughter and her husband have been doing much, much better I am thrilled to say.  Hope it continues.  The grandsons seem to be happy, and are in school.  I agree we need to surround ourselves with those that treat us kindly, and with respect...and avoid ones that cannot manage to behave that way!  lol  I must not be too bad as a MIL because I have been told by son in laws and other daughter in laws that I am indeed good to them and ALL the children biological and not biological.  I believe we should treat others how we want to be treated.  The children learn from our examples!  Have a great Thanksgiving.  J


Thank you jtdm.  I appreciate your response.  I hope you have a great holiday.  I am so looking forward to my house being full of friends and family the next few days.  What a blessing!  Then I will be glad when they all go back home too I'm sure!  A few days is enough for a wonderful visit I think.  J


Quote from: JaneF on November 19, 2012, 08:57:09 pm
I just don't understand why it has to be that way when there could be a tiny bit of compromise by all involved.  I guess some folks are able to be fair and reasonable and kind, while others do not have the ability.

It is a mystery to me too! Why do some children grow up to be the kind we write about here while their siblings are normal caring individuals able to consider the feelings and needs of others? Why does a child start out as the perfect child and morph into someone we've never met before, seemingly overnight?  How can a spouse have so much influence that a lifetime of love and support is forgotten?  These are questions we'll never have an answer to. It is what it is!  Learning to let go of our expectations and dreams is very difficult.  I had always hoped that DS would come around and see the error of his ways but I have let go of that too.  I have not not seen him or my GC or heard from him in almost 6 months.  I ran into DIL in the store and the hate for me in her voice was stronger than ever.  I politely said hello and kept on walking.  Yes, finding a new focus for your love and generosity is what helps in the healing.  But we have to be careful that we don't over compensate with the "good" child.  They know about the issues with the other child and don't want regular updates and they don't want to be smothered either.  It's a fine line to walk.  My outside focus is my job as a school bus driver.  I try to be kind and patient and willing to listen to what the children have to say.  I have driven for 17 years and recently have developed a greater appreciation for the trust and affection of the children who ride with me every day.  I still have a long way to go but at least I'm moving forward! 
Change the changeable, accept the unchangeable, and remove yourself from the unacceptable.   
~ Denis Waitley ~


I doubt we will ever really understand the whys? when it comes to the way some of our adult children treat us.  It took me a long time to figure out I needed to let it go, for my sanity and my health.  In my case I THINK my son has just now "gotten it" as far as how I have felt because of the way we have been treated all these years.  Sadly, he waited too long because I do not feel the awful pain anymore, I do not sit and wonder what I did, or what I did not do right, or try to tiptoe around DIL so I can talk to or see my DS and GC.  I have moved past that thankfully.  Now in my opinion he has figured out that he has sacrificed his family in order to keep his wife happy, and he isn't enjoying the fallout of those choices!  I had lots of friends and other family here for the Thanksgiving holidays.  We all got along great, we laughed, shared stories, and my oldest DS took his "sons" who are really step sons..(but treated the same as our other grandkids) as well as his nephews (my DD's sons), and they played basketball as the weather was glorious!  The children played on GD piano (keyboard), colored pictures, and played some hand held games.  My YS of course did not call or contact us at all as the holidays are all reserved for DIL's family...this was one of the things I told him that had caused me pain over the last 14 years.  They could not even bother giving us a day the week before the holidays, or a day a week after???  There was absolutely no compromise on their part at all even though we were more than willing to have a whole different day.  I have never before now said anything negative or mean about DIL or her family, but it did not seem to change the situation.  They are STRANGE....lol  But as I said, I have learned to let it go.  And now he wants to give me "a few scraps?"  No thanks.  Respect should be mutual, in my opinion of course!  Have a most joyous day!  I am once again planning to do my exercise routine since I am not at all stiff or sore from yesterday  HOORAY!  I am trying very hard to stick to my new routine...thanks for the info on my fitness pal Luise!  I think it will be a very helpful tool!   J


When my DS/DIL situation became unbearable, I knew I had to do something to empower myself. Pooh passed along the info re: MFP and a bunch of us joined up. I figured I'd be there maybe 2 weeks tops while everyone else would sail on to meet their goals. Surprise! I'm one of the most faithful loggers, 1-1/2 years &  minus over 30 lbs later. Slow, steady & consistent works for me. I finally figured out that it's a lifestyle change, not a quick fix.

I cannot control DS/DIL. I can control my fitness & health. It was amazing to see how my attitude towards DS/DIL changed when I became stronger physically. They noticed my improved looks, but didn't say much...and I think perhaps DIL saw a challenge there (or maybe it's a coincidence.) She has since begun a rigorous diet & exercise program herself, lol! She looks terrific. If I can inspire someone, maybe even my DIL, to be healthier that's great!
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


I am so impressed with your progress at weight loss!  You really inspire me, as does Luise!  I am so motivated to do this, and I even made myself up a folder ONLY for diet and exercise progress notes that I can look at frequently and take with me if I need to eat somewhere besides home.  I was so pleased to wake up after really putting a lot of exercise in yesterday, and did not feel even a bit sore!  Wow.  So I guess I am walk at a faster pace today then, and perhaps do another rep of weights and do 5 more minutes of stretching exercises.  You are so right in what you say as far as DIL and that situation.  It is great to finally reach that point and feel weight is lifted off isn't it?  I know I am feeling so much lighter now because I changed MY attitudes about it.  Trying to drink the required water recommended daily almost makes my teeth float!  My water bill may raise due to flushing and hand washing increase as well...oh well, it's for a great cause!  Have a most fabulous day ladies!   J