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see your position in the family as a "married relation" and therefore do not treat your MIL/FIL, etc., the same as your own parents?

 

I would say things to my own mother - not rudely but perhaps more to the point - but would not say them to my MIL. I feel the same about my dh's brothers. There are just certain things I would not say at all or phrase differently if I was talking to my brother.

 

Am I treating people "unevenly"?

 

I don't want to create the impression that I am rude with my family of origin but maintain some politeness with the in-laws. I just feel that my dh as the son or brother can say things I may be thinking but would not speak because I am the dil or sil. KWIM?

 

 

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I've flat refused to call MIL 'Mom' or anything but her name. She was offended, but too bad. I just couldn't do it.

 

I'm waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay blunt with my parents these days...and we're getting along for now *blink* No way could I ever be blunt w/MIL. She'd have a complete mental hysterical breakdown.

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Well, I am pretty polite even with my own parents. I will say something directly though to either my ILs or my parents but I try to say it in a way that they will receive it. If it is boundary issue, I will set the boundary even if it causes flack. So to answer your question, I see us all as family and treat everyone the same.

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I treat my in-laws differently than I treat my parents. Hubby and I met and married in Germany. We were married before we spent any significant time with either of our families as a couple. In the past, we had always spent more time with my family because they were closer to us. The past 4 years though we were in California and dh's family was only a couple of hours away. I am so thankful for that time. Our sons got to know his side of the family better. In fact, we all grew closer during that time.

 

Back to the topic though, I wouldn't say I'm more "rude" to my parents but I am more myself with them.

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I don't believe (hope) I was ever rude with my parents, but if I felt they were 'stepping over the line' I would somehow bring it up, and ask them not to. With my mil, I've never had the nerve to do that, and believe, there have been more opportunities than I can count. So I'd say I treated my own family different - I think I was probably more openly honest and frank with them. Simply because I trusted them and knew they would never hold it against me. I felt more comfortable. Although I feel much more comfortable with my in-laws, I don't think I will ever reach the level of comfort and trust I had with my own parents.

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I see myself as a married relation. So I don't speak up to my husband's parents the way I would my own.

 

The problem with this is that my MIL does talk to me the way she would to her own kids. But I don't feel comfortable responding in the same way her kids would. So I'm forced to bite my tongue a lot, and I get mad about it.

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I definitely treat my family differently than my inlaws (not better, just different). My family is mine, they have known me forever and will love me regardless. My inlaws are great but they are still my husbands family. They have a shared history that I am not a part of and there are things about me they do not know. They don't have to love me but they do (and I would like to keep it that way).

 

My inlaws and I are also very different. I am quite like my parents.

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My in-laws disagree with me more than my parents. Sometimes my FIL says things I find offensive, annoying, or objectionable just because he enjoys arguing and knows I am an easy target with a short fuse.

 

At Thanksgiving I was annoyed with him because he was saying he wouldn't vote for a woman and I made him tell dd that.

 

I am so glad to be going home for Christmas so I don't have to hear that nonsense. My mom would eat him for breakfast if he said some of that stuff around her.

 

 

I would say I am not super respectful around FIL cause he says stuff like "The Chinese certainly know what they are doing, they know how to build stuff and get things done." Of course I respond, "All the little babies with lead poisoning, great job China!"

 

But he does it on purpose, he likes to argue.

Edited by Sis
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Well, my family is very I-will-tell-you-exactly-what-I-think while DH's mom is extremely passive aggressive. The passive aggressive thing makes me *very* stressed out and irritable. So...I'm more likely to tell it to my parents straight vs. holding my tongue until I snap over something dumb and look like an insane person to my MIL. I realize this is to my detriment, I'm not sure how to fix it.

 

So, my answer is: I treat them differently because they are different.

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I would never call my inlaws "Mom" or "Dad." It is definitely a "married relationship." However, they lived with us for 6 mos and now they live literally 8 houses down the road from us so proximity and familiarity have definitely made our relationship much less formal. They've seen the real me. She rocks. :)

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My in-laws make it a point to never let me forget that I'm not really one of them. I will never be truly accepted as anything other than an outsider.

 

Ah! I've got some of them too!

 

It's a shame dh's extended family is in England. I might have liked some of them ;)

 

Rosie

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Guest CarolineUK
My in-laws make it a point to never let me forget that I'm not really one of them. I will never be truly accepted as anything other than an outsider.

 

 

Same here.

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My dh is the only child of single mother--there is no way I can compete with that! :lol: MIL and I get along well, but we share only a few interests. DH's family, esp. his dad's side is VERY different from me, and I always feel like an outsider--but it's not them, it's me--and, truthfully, I really think I prefer it that way. His mom's family, esp. his grandparents have accepted me from the get-go, and I call them Gram and Gramp, same as DH and the kids.

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...

see your position in the family as a "married relation" and therefore do not treat your MIL/FIL, etc., the same as your own parents?

 

I would say things to my own mother - not rudely but perhaps more to the point - but would not say them to my MIL. I feel the same about my dh's brothers. There are just certain things I would not say at all or phrase differently if I was talking to my brother.

 

Am I treating people "unevenly"?

 

I don't want to create the impression that I am rude with my family of origin but maintain some politeness with the in-laws. I just feel that my dh as the son or brother can say things I may be thinking but would not speak because I am the dil or sil. KWIM?

 

 

 

I don't consider this treating people unevenly. I think a little extra politeness on the ils side is wise--you don't have the number of years going for you that you do in your own family. W/ my sis, we've known ea other our whole lives, & have countless fights & tears & losses & celebrations to build a complicated & lasting relationship from.

 

I have almost all those things w/ my ils, but for 10 yrs as opposed to 30. We don't share blood. Iow, there's a threshold of closeness that I don't think marriage crosses. It can come close, but if dh & I divorced, I *know* their loyalty would lie w/ him, even if he was wrong. Honestly? I think my mom would do the same. I think that's just how family is, & as long as we're NOT divorced, lol, we ea have some measure of the other's families' loyalty, too. A large measure, I'd say.

 

But really, the things I wouldn't say to my ils are more based on their personalities--what they could or couldn't hear/accept/understand. And I treat my mom the same way, it's just that what I think she can hear/understand is different from what they can.

 

All of that said, I love my ils like family, & they've gone to great lengths to let me know that they feel the same way.

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My MIL is a person with her own personality, and our relationship is distinct from any other relationship in the history of all relationships. We all treat people "unevenly" because people are individuals, not defined in relation to us only.

 

So there are things I would say to my MIL but not my mother, and things I would say to my mother but not my MIL. I have two sisters and each is separate and different from the other. My relationship with each is different because they are different people.

 

I do try to treat my MIL with a lot of love and affection. I have less natural love for her than my own mother because she did not raise me. But I do love her, and I try to treat her as someone important to me (which she is). I call my mother almost every day because she is a widow and struggling. If I don't call her for a few days, it's fine, but I try to reach out to her. I call my MIL far less even though she is also a widow. I probably should call her more. I do try to call her and give her time. Today I took her dog for an entire afternoon so she could have a day off from puppy hell.

 

Anyway, I don't think "even" is really a goal. I think we have to figure out how to love each person best, and they will have different love languages, different needs, different desires.

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I definitely treat my family differently than my inlaws (not better, just different). My family is mine, they have known me forever and will love me regardless. My inlaws are great but they are still my husbands family. They have a shared history that I am not a part of and there are things about me they do not know. They don't have to love me but they do (and I would like to keep it that way).

 

My inlaws and I are also very different. I am quite like my parents.

 

This exactly describes how I feel about it.

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My relationship with my MIL is different, but mainly because she is a more formal person. FIL is deceased. I've been in the family for 20 years so I feel like I belong, it's just different. My dh is like a son to my parents, we're friends with my parents, they know our business, we have a more personal interaction with them. But MIL tends to be more hands off in the relationship with all of her kids.

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Absolutely married relation. I can't imagine it being any other way and I'm pretty sure it's me putting that feeling there. I haven't really thought about it but I'd say I'm always aware that I'll always, technically, the outsider. Hmmm... What does that say about me?

 

My family has a term for this. We call them "Outlaws." (Get it? In-laws? Outlaws?) Not that we intentionally treat those related by marriage differently. It's just how one perceives oneself when around one's spouse's family. And I absolutely feel like an "outlaw" around dh's family. Though, somehow, my family seems to expect him to behave like blood family around them. Weird. :001_huh:

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My in-laws make it a point to never let me forget that I'm not really one of them. I will never be truly accepted as anything other than an outsider.

 

Yes, this is exactly the way my relationship is with my IL's.

 

I actually would LOVE to be able to be accepted as a true daughter by them rather than just DIL. Both of my parents have past away and even though there is no way anyone could replace them, it would be nice to have that father and mother type figure in my life.

 

But not only am I the outsider, they are also just not very affectionate types anyway so it doesn't really dawn on them how cold their behavior is towards me. I mean, my MIL will make food for dh and tell me specifically that it is only for him to eat.

 

It's just so strange to me. I grew up in a very openly loving relationship with my parents, we hugged a lot, we told each other we loved each other every day, and my mom would never tell anyone they were not allowed to eat what she cooked.

 

So, no I would never be 'myself' around my IL's. There is always a bit of formality.

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I've lived in the US for 10 years now after. One thing that is shocking and confusing to me is that married women call their husbands' mothers in their faces by their first names.

I call my MIL mom and it feels so natural to me and I would never be able to imagine calling her by her first name. It is like putting her in the same position as any other woman in the world while she is in fact the mother of the person who is dearest to me in the world.

One thing that is truly amazingly is that I am from a very broken family, while my in-laws are the most loving couple and parents in the world. The Lord used them to heal my past wounds. They treat me like their own daughter. Dh is their only child. I always feel loved, respected, and cherished by them, which makes it very easy to call them mom and dad while my own parents disappeared/died when I was 6 and 16 in China.

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I think a lot of how one would respond to in-laws has to do with how the in-laws act toward them.

 

I can totally be myself, warts and all, with my 3 brothers-in-law and the girls they married. I can be more of myself with my FIL if my MIL isn't around. I'm totally walking on eggshells when I'm around MIL. She's not blunt about it but has a way of letting me know I'm not her daughter and that of the girls that married her 4 sons, I'm the least liked. I was the only one that didn't grow up in the state didn't know them before getting married. I met them the day before the wedding and they didn't like that dh and I met and married within 4 months (only having been physically in the same place for 10 days of that 4 months, we met online). Two of my BILs married their high school sweethearts so my inlaws saw these girls grow up as the town they live in has a K-12 school because it's so small. My other BIL married his college sweetheart, so she was known for years before they married. They seem to feel that I stole their son away, and that's why we don't live within walking distance of them, they don't seem to remember that dh was in the US Navy when he and I met, and that he still is, thus the moving far away. They are in IA, and last time I checked getting a warship up there isn't possible. Until recently I was the only SAHM of the bunch and they don't seem to think that's very responsible of me. When we started homeschooling, she thought I went off the deep end and was going to whisk my family away to live in a Hippie Commune and would never wear shoes again. Her words not mine.

 

All that to say I do treat them differently because they treat me differently. They make me very uncomfortable when we visit them and on the rare occasions they visit us (because I stole them all away remember, it has nothing to due with dh's job in the Navy) I can't wait for them to leave so I can relax.

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I am different with my in-laws than with my own parents, but the whole dynamic of the families is different. Dh's family is more...formal?...restrained?....not sure how to describe it...than my family. When in Rome, I do as the Romans. That doesn't mean I don't love both sets of parents, but I think it would make my in-laws uncomfortable of I was as informal with them as I am with my own parents, and I don't want to make them uncomfortable. Dh is also more formal with his parents than with mine. It's just the difference in overall family dynamic.

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I would never be able to call my in-laws Mom or Dad. They refer to themselves as Mom and Dad but I couldn't without being fake. I love them and they have completely accepted me and have always been kind and supportive but I'm not one of them and doubt I ever will feel as if I am. It's just my personality. My BIL (married to DHs sister) seems to feel the same as me but my SIL has completely assimilated in a way I don't think I could.

 

With my parents and extended family, I am much more relaxed. We are very open and informal. I think it is partly that I grew up with them so naturally I am more comfortable with those I've known for my whole life vs people I've known 10years and partly that we have different dynamics. DH's family is much more formal and stressed. His parents are divorced and things at big gatherings are always a little tense. MIL is so emotional that it's hard to have a frank conversation, and there's always some kind of in fighting that I don't understand.

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...

see your position in the family as a "married relation" and therefore do not treat your MIL/FIL, etc., the same as your own parents?

 

I would say things to my own mother - not rudely but perhaps more to the point - but would not say them to my MIL. I feel the same about my dh's brothers. There are just certain things I would not say at all or phrase differently if I was talking to my brother.

 

Am I treating people "unevenly"?

 

I don't want to create the impression that I am rude with my family of origin but maintain some politeness with the in-laws. I just feel that my dh as the son or brother can say things I may be thinking but would not speak because I am the dil or sil. KWIM?

 

 

I tend to be kinder/gentler to my MIL "to her face" -- and let DH be the blunt one. Conversely, I take the blunt force to my family/folks (well, except my older brother... but that's because I'm a woman :glare:, yeah he apologizes to my dh for offending me.)

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...

see your position in the family as a "married relation" and therefore do not treat your MIL/FIL, etc., the same as your own parents?

 

I would say things to my own mother - not rudely but perhaps more to the point - but would not say them to my MIL. I feel the same about my dh's brothers. There are just certain things I would not say at all or phrase differently if I was talking to my brother.

 

Am I treating people "unevenly"?

 

I don't want to create the impression that I am rude with my family of origin but maintain some politeness with the in-laws. I just feel that my dh as the son or brother can say things I may be thinking but would not speak because I am the dil or sil. KWIM?

 

 

 

I see my position as an in-law as part of the family equally. I am treated and counted as a daughter/sister/granddaughter by Dh's family the same as Dh. With my Dh's family I am a part of the family.

 

My family is way different than my in-laws. My family is not very close and can be very judgemental.

 

I do show different respect for my in-laws compared to my own family. There are some things I am very careful to not say or do around my in-laws... but out of respect for them because I know it would make them uncomfortable.

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I definitely treat my family differently than my inlaws (not better, just different). My family is mine, they have known me forever and will love me regardless. My inlaws are great but they are still my husbands family. They have a shared history that I am not a part of and there are things about me they do not know. They don't have to love me but they do (and I would like to keep it that way).

 

My inlaws and I are also very different. I am quite like my parents.

 

 

This is how it is for me and my in-laws. We are close, they treat me as one of their own. Dh can raz his family easily, I won't even try it. But that is more in my nature than anything. I am just more "reserved" so I think that I am the one who puts an invisable line that I don't cross.

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My in-laws practically raised me since Dh and I have been together *forever* and my parents were pretty... well, just not there due to their own falling apart world. So, I really DO consider my in-laws parents to me and sometimes forget that I am not their blood relative. I'm much closer to them than to my own parents.

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I am much less "familiar" with my FIL that I was with my parents. Not because I wanted to be uneven, but ... I didn't grow up with him. He isn't my parent. My SIL and BIL are wonderful people, but our relationships are different. I have to say I am closer to my SIL than I am to my own sisters, but that is because our relationship is not hampered by dysfunctional family history;).

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I don't know my in-laws as well as I know my parents, so of course our relationships are different. I love my parents in a different way than I love my in-laws, as well. Both my mother and my mil can drive me nuts, and I can tell my mom that, but I won't tell my mil.

 

There is a difference in boundaries. When my mom is here visiting (extended stays always), she'll pick up a load of laundry and start folding. She'll keep the washer/dryer going. MIL lives closer, but not around the corner, so it is odd for them to be here for a non-social visit. They were here last month for a few days to help as dh was in the hospital. She knew that laundry would be something she could help with, but didn't want to help herself. If I had put stuff in the washer or gave her a basket of wash, she'd do it, but she didn't want to overstep. :001_smile: They took a list and went to the grocery store, they cooked meals, but were careful to not overstep. It's a dance, and we try not to step on toes too often.

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Well, my family is very I-will-tell-you-exactly-what-I-think while DH's mom is extremely passive aggressive. The passive aggressive thing makes me *very* stressed out and irritable. So...I'm more likely to tell it to my parents straight vs. holding my tongue until I snap over something dumb and look like an insane person to my MIL. I realize this is to my detriment, I'm not sure how to fix it.

 

So, my answer is: I treat them differently because they are different.

 

Yup, this is the stance I am taking too.

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I treat people in particular ways based on our relationship.

 

I don't "let it all hang out" with my in laws or my parents. I'm just not that close to either of them.

 

My in laws live in another state and we see them maybe 2x a year for 3 days at a time. I'm polite and reserved as I would be with any guest.

 

I'm a lot more talkative with my mom.

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Definitely a married relation. I've never even thought to call my in-laws "Mom" and "Dad". My husband never did so with my parents either. Maybe it's because we were 29 and 34 when we married instead of 20?

 

On the other hand, my SIL calls my parents "Mom" and "Dad". She and my brother married about 3 years ago and she is 40. It really bugs me that she is calling my mother "Mom" for some reason even though I really like her a lot.

 

Lisa

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I avoid any and all issues with my in-laws. They are his parents and he gets to deal with issues. We have been family for almost 15 years but they are high maintenance and I simply do not have the energy. I would never say the right thing anyway so I save my energy for my kids, my husband and my parents. FWIW, dh is very comfortable with my parents and we always have a good time, nice and relaxed together.

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