Author Topic: DILs...What goes around comes around.  (Read 6439 times)

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Offline miamilady

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DILs...What goes around comes around.
« on: December 08, 2013, 09:43:19 AM »
Hello all,

I've been reading a few of the topics here and thought I'd write one myself. One of the things that caught my eye was a few comments by MILs of sons, who pointed out what goes around comes around. The premise is that one day their DILs would be mothers of DS and then they would know what its like to have a bad DIL. Or, perhaps they'd one day have a DS who completely leaves his FOO.

I've been thinking about this concept for a while and wanted to write a topic on it, but didn't bc I didn't want to offend anyone. But, after careful consideration, I've decided to take the chance & write on it with the hopes that I might shed light.

I agree wholeheartedly in Karma. I believe if you mistreat someone (whether you're a MIL, DIL, or whatever)  you'll have to pay the piper. BUT, I also believe that perhaps there are MILs in here that are experiencing karma for some of YOUR actions.

I'm a DIL, and to make a long story short, I don't care for my MIL. I'm respectful and cordial. But I can only take her in small doses. If you listen to her side of the story, she'd probably say that I used to be nicer when DH and I were dating, but over the years I've distanced myself for no reason... When in reality, I've distanced myself bc she wasn't  willing to give me the respect that I deserved as wife and mother. Her son has also distanced himself. NOT bc I want him to, but he has told me that he doesn’t feel the need to be around his mom as much anymore. He's still a great son & he loves his mom dearly, he just doesn't go around her as much as he did before we were married. I do encourage him to spend time with her (just not with me).

Interestingly enough, DH told me that MIL and her MIL never got along. They never spent the holidays together, never called her etc. Well, maybe what goes around does come around... BUT that goes for everyone, doesn't it?

Even though I’m not a MIL, I do believe we are all in the same boat. Someday my DSs will be adults (their toddlers now). I have to ask myself, would  I want a DIL like myself? Even though I’m not perfect, I think I’m a pretty good deal… Time will tell. Ask me again in 20 years. But for now, what are your thoughts?

Offline luise.volta

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2013, 09:50:52 AM »
Welcome, M - Please go to our HomePage and under Read Me First read the posts there for new members. Please pay special attention to the Forum Agreement to see if it's a fit. We aren't so much a discussion board as we're a place to bring and work on current issues.

Is there something that you want to change in your situation or learn to adapt to?
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline herbalescapes

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2013, 10:01:43 AM »
I've always wondered if my ILs ever considered that their kids grew up in a family where the paternal FOO was majorly sidelined.  All holidays were spent with the maternal relatives.  If the paternal GPs came to visit, they were dragged along to one of my MIL's relative's home for the celebration.  My FIL's siblings were never part of the holidays.  I don't know if there was some type of crisis or my MIL was a DILFH like my ILs consider me or if it's because my FIL is tempermentally more in sync with my MIL's family than his own.  I don't say that as a criticism of my FIL or his relatives, they are just very different. 

It's tempting to wish what goes around comes around onto your AC/DIL/SIL, but think about what you are wishing for your GC's futures.  I've always said if I end up with a DIL (or SIL) like me, we'll butt heads, but do ok. My nightmare would be to end up with the DIL (or SIL) my own ILs would want.  Then I'll have to start following my own advice and bite my tongue a lot.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2013, 10:21:36 AM »
I'm coming from a lot of retrospect here. I'm 86 years old. It seems to me in my case...that it was very personal and individualistic. There were no Web-forums, of course, since there was no Web. My original in-laws had two sons and yearned for a daughter. They had known of me since I was a toddler because we were neighbors but there was no interaction between our families. I have posted, I think under the Success Stories category about what my MIL put up with...which was a great deal and how we became lifelong friends, my divorce from her DS notwithstanding. My take is that you sound like you are handling your situation in a very mature way and factoring in history sounds wise. Feelings are what often drive many of us more than logic. As far as the future goes...who knows? The dynamics shift like drifting sands.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline MountainGirl

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2013, 10:28:06 AM »
I have a very personal example of where DH's parents sidelined themselves. They lived in the same city as us, but never offered to help, babysit or have the GC's for sleepovers. They felt that their children were grown and their parenting stopped. They were more interested in having dinner parties with their friends than getting to know my children. When one child got seriously ill and needed medical attention out of state, they still did not offer to help care for my oldest while I was away. The final straw was when my FIL, who had drinking problems, got drunk and told me I knew nothing about parenting as I was adopted myself. At that point, DH cut off communication with them until they apologized. They did eventually but the relationship was always strained.

IL's on both sides need to remember that our children chose to marry and start their own family.  When the FOO offends, it's up to the DH/DW to support and stand up for their partner, which my DH rightfully did and it strengthened our own marriage. My parents have become closer to DH as a result, because the relationship was built on mutual respect.

Having one side of the family in the shadows, and your children not knowing their grandparents, is not something I'd wish on anyone. Thankfully I was raised by a wonderful mother, and will follow her approach with my DS, not my MIL's!

Offline miamilady

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2013, 12:27:24 PM »
thanks guys for your responses.

I think its a great topic, bc it forces us to look at ourselves and possibly make amends in an effort to change things for the better. Now some moms might not be able to relate to my story at. Some moms simply have bad DILs or DSs. I'm sure everyones situation/family is different. I really do feel bad for moms who don't have a great relationship with their DS, DIL, or GC... But when reading these stories, i really can't help but wonder what my relationship will be like with my DS when their older, or if I'm creating bad karma for myself. In other words, when is it ok to distance yourself from someone? After all, my MIL distanced herself from her MIL; and sadly, I feel the need to create some distance from her.

Offline Stilllearning

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2013, 01:45:03 PM »
Miamilady, have you ever heard people say that girls pick out a man like their father?  I thought that I had avoided that but now 35 years later I realize that I was wrong.  My DH is so much like my Dad in so many respects it is incredible.  I loved my Dad until the day he died so I guess our marriage is intact.   ;D 

If I unknowingly picked out a man so much like my father it stands to reason that your DS's might unknowingly pick out someone like you.  That is a possibility that you should consider when you deal with your MIL.  Actually I am surprised by how much like my MIL I am......


Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline miamilady

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2013, 03:13:37 PM »
thats a pretty good point. my mil and i do have a lot of similarities.

Offline Stilllearning

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2013, 04:14:52 PM »
Yep Miamilady.....that is only one of the things I have to ponder while I have so many issues with my DIL.  Things are getting better for us though.  I found out during Thanksgiving dinner (first holiday they have spent with me since my son moved out) that her Dad's Mom, who passed away recently, demanded that her children and grandchildren spend every holiday with her.  There must have been a lot of resentment in that family about being so controlled (she had lots of money so she threatened disowning them) by their Dad's mom.  I think some of that was transferred to me.......Now that she is gone maybe there is hope.  My DIL is like a different person.  I cannot imagine how emotionally impoverished that woman must have been.  I guess they are right.....money does not make you happy.
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline luise.volta

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2013, 05:21:32 PM »
In the retirement center where I live...I see some of that. Not about money so much as obligation.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline Stilllearning

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2013, 06:37:56 PM »
None of us want to have our children visit us out of obligation but a lot of parents fall on that as a last resort.  The only way to avoid it is to let them go.  There was a poem about that wasn't there? 

http://quoteinvestigator.com/2012/04/08/love-set-free/

It sounds a lot easier than it is!!
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline Pooh

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2013, 06:03:03 AM »
I totally believe in Karma.  It can happen to anyone, no matter what the title.  I see most of our MIL's and DIL's in here readily admit that they didn't do everything right and could have done some things better. 
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell

Offline Footloose

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2013, 08:00:03 AM »
The very saddest thing that comes from this FOO cutoff is to the children who are cut off from relationships from other adults who LOVE them. 

I do not get the cut off thing and never will!  It all boils down to CONTROL.  My DIL can control her own world to include DS but cannot control me and that's the biggest rub to her.  I miss DS and GCs so much as they are growing so fast w/o me but I know that they do have a very loving mom and dad who are doing a fine job as parents.  Just a cruddy job at being FOO family.

I get on w/ my own life and keep it full....I get comments fr DS that I am too busy for them and brag too much about my and DH's happiness and good life.  I have tried it on her terms and on my terms but it never worked because it takes BOTH parties to be interested in making things work.  I always felt I was doing all the work and when i stopped and let it go, I started to really heal. 

I learned that it wasn't about DIL, it was about me.  Not getting what is needed or wanted but never asking for anything either.  Just wait until the other party "sees the effort and will do the right thing by including me, or giving me that promotion" or what ever. 

If we want it it is up to us to work towards it and be clear about our own needs and wants w/o putting the other on a guilt trip.  Just a matter of fact....u ask me to get back on FB and I do so I can see the pics of the GCs.  DS and DIL are just too busy to send me any.  I must go fetch with the masses of their 2555 closest "friends".  So I am on their for less than 2 weeks and am happy to see into their world a bit.  Then my thoughtful DIL makes it a point to announce GPs day and how her kids just love her parents so.  Not a mention to me or about me.  So why wouldn't she simply give them a private shout out?  a personal email, card or gift?  Well I think it was to get my goad and I deleted the FB account the same day and unfriended all contacts, deleted all personal info so I wouldn't be tempted at future voyeurism.

A cpl weeks later, my son asked  if I saw the newest kid pics and I told him I had to excuse myself from social media as it was not a fit for me.  He asked what happened and I told him a person on the site was not nice.  He told me I could block the offender but I wasn't going to give. I know enough about this dynamic to tell him what happened.  It would only lead to denial and hurt feelings.   

People cannot read our minds but they do note the behavior and I made it easy for them to treat me like they did.  Now I have dropped the tug o war rope and simply live my life for me and DH.  That is enough for me.  Yes I am saddened and disappointed but I am not dead and I still have a lot of love to give away.  I am working on that and in giving my love and time to others who have the capacity to reciprocate in kind respect and love.

I too came over to WWU from another site that was supposedly for grandparents but it was just a forum for DILs to vent and bash.  So glad I found THIS site and am thankful for our administrators who keep the blamers and bashers OFF of this pure site for sharing and healing!!!

Offline Lillycache

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2013, 08:12:32 AM »
Absolutely Karma is real..  I have experienced it.  I can look back to times when I was thoughtless or selfish or self-absorbed and note how I NOW understand how hurtful that was to the other person.   Since, my only MIL died shortly after I was married, my reflection into the "Karma Big Bite"  comes from my own mother.  I understand how hurtful an adult child can be  but only because I was once a hurtful adult child.  So.. in answer to the OP.. YES.. Karma is real.. it WILL get everyone of us.  It's up to us to learn from it..  Unfortunately, those lessons come too late, because by the time we understand how wrong we were, that other person is usually gone and there is no chance for amends. 

Offline luise.volta

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Re: DILs...What goes around comes around.
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2013, 09:12:25 AM »
Monday Musings: The term 'believe in' sometimes is a red flag...since belief systems are so personal. The last time I referred to Karma with someone I got into deep trouble. So I have renamed it...'Life.'  ;) What I put out there is a mirror and mirrors reflect back; lessons come, imperfections reign, learnings are usually in retrospect....Life. Since I will be 87 in less than three months, I find it really interesting that I am still making mistakes and learning. When I keep making the same mistake over and over again, it's is invariably because I got stuck (again) in being right and refused to learn. The way around that, for me, was/is to take responsibility for my part in 'whatever' while accepting that others will do that when (and if) they do. Their learnings are their business...even when they are my own (adult) kids!

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama