Jump to content

Menu

I've had it with my MIL....


MommaOfalotta
 Share

Recommended Posts

I'm fed up. Actually, thats a huge understatement.

 

Dh and I are trying to relocate from Ohio to Florida.. well I knew shed have something to say about it..She has something to say about EVERYTHING. I could type all day and it wouldn't cover all of the craziness I've witnessed over the last eight years.

 

I say I love Harry Potter.. she tells Dh Harry Potter is evil.

I say Im trying for a VBAC, she lists 800 reasons why I don't really want a VBAC.

 

Literally anything and everything I say, she tells me why I'm wrong. I could call her right now and say Dh and I hit the lottery and she would have something to say about it...

 

Well when I was pregnant with ds we decided we would name him after my father. She hated the name.. which really infuriated me because its my DADS name. Well I figured she would drop it but now my son is 8 months and she is still making comments about the name. Most recently she has started commenting on pictures of him on facebook saying things about his name... like leaving short novels on my comments about how its an old name, and shes going to call him something else.. and if someone asks me what his name is I'm going to tell them he doesn't have one. Oh, yeah. Ive kept my mouth shut to "keep the peace" for 8 years because I know if I open my mouth... all "heck" is gonna break loose. I used to have a huge temper and I used to be horribly confrontational and Im trying to avoid that now. I made it clear to my husband the next comment she makes about his name, I dont care what she says, Im speaking up and setting her straight.

 

Now I come home today from co-op and he tells me about the IM's she was sending him last night about our decision to move to Fla. About how he has no loyalty to his family, hes "WHIPPED", how her mother warned her he would do this, and that hes "one of them now" <--Im thinking she means one of my family now? That Florida is horrible to live in (shes never lived there) that there are snakes, alligators, murderers, etc (shes never been to the area we want to live in either) blah blah blah. She keeps saying things like the kids need their grandparents (both of my parents will move if we move, and they could move too-easily) that hes making the biggest mistake of his life. I'm just furious right now. She says this all to dh but wont say anything to me about it.. I'm almost wanting her to say something to give me a reason to go off on her. She tells him he only wants to move because I do. She says things like "Thank God I have two sons, your brother is loyal to his family" Dont even get me started.. and by the way I'm an only child and neither one of my parents are trying to control our lives. If we move the grandkids away they will move too not matter how hard it may be for them.

 

Im just so sick of keeping my mouth shut when she gets to say anything that pops into her head, no matter how ignorant. I used to have to hear from this woman that "1 in 4 babies drown in the toilet."

 

She started giving ds food that I did not approve of when he was 4 months. She would make comments all the time about me starving him. My child is 8 months old and in size 12-18 months... he is not starved. My dh would say "Hes not allowed to have that." She would respond with "Well grandma says he can."

 

She tells my FIL that my son doesn't like him.

 

Im just done. How do I put her in her place? If I open my mouth its all going to come out. Im telling you it will be World War 3. Ive kept everything in for 8 years and Im fed up. I want to flip out on her and tell her just how CRAZY I think she is. Dh is a big boy now, hes a husband and a father.. she can't control him and it drives her crazy. Im sorry to vent so much... Im just so sick of it all. I dont know how to handle it.

 

P.S. I will be editing this later so please dont quote.

 

P.P.S. Wow, looking back at this post Im thinking her craziness has rubbed off on me... :crying:

 

ETA: Your first thought may be that dh needs to say something. He has before and she blows right over it. I had a long talk with him today about how he needs to stick up for me (she drives him nuts too but I guess hes used to it) he hugged me and said hes going to say something to her. Ive decided that if she keeps it up after that Im taking a crack at it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dh needs to put her in her place. At the very least he needs to tell her that she needs to keep her opinions to herself and any criticism from her will be met with him walking out of the room or hanging up on her. He needs to use phrases such as "WE don't allow..", "We've decided..." and take responsibility for the choices you two make together (such as moving, introducing foods, etc.). I'm sure she thinks YOU are the problem and not him. She needs constant reminding that that her son and you make these decisions together, that is why the "WE" talk is so important.

 

The only response other than that would be, "I'm sorry you feel that way. Pass the bean dip, please."

 

K

Link to comment
Share on other sites

She sounds awful.

 

But why haven't you said anything to her? If she makes snotty comments to you, you don't have to just stand there and take it.

 

I'm not saying you should yell and scream and curse at her, but you are certainly entitled to be very clear that you don't like what she said, and that you're not going to tolerate any more of her garbage.

 

She gets away with it because you and your dh allow it.

 

I'm not picking on you -- I'm very sorry that she's such an idiot -- but both you and your dh need to have a very serious conversation with her and set some serious boundaries -- as well as consequences for whenever she acts like a jerk.

 

Normally, I would say that you should let your dh deal with the problem because she's his mother, but it sounds like you have a lot of interaction with her, too, so I think a united front is important. It would definitely make it easier on you if he talked to her first, though -- as long as you know he's strong enough to stand up to her.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd be deleting every single FB comment that was not benign, supportive, kind or was in any way passive/aggressive.

 

I'd be setting firm boundaries about what you will listen to/allow. You can't STOP her from talking, but you can decide what you will listen to and allow in your space.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm running out the door, but one minor thing you can control is get her off your facebook ASAP. Anyone who made comments like that on mine would be out of there - that includes MILs, I don't like mine either but she's never been stupid brave enough to argue with me in a public setting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow. It sounds like moving could be the best thing ever. I am so sorry you are having to deal with this. I hope this doesn't sound harsh. I don't mean it to - I mean it to be encouraging. It is time to stop engaging. Tell her you disagree and move on. If she keeps talking, leave the room, hang up or whatever. Don't get angry - be super sweet and cheerful, but enforce those boundaries. If she is going to be so rude on facebook, tell her that you are going to unfriend her if she keeps it up and then follow through. Talk to her like you would a child. You would not argue with a child. You tell them something is not true and you move on. If she can't play nice, she doesn't get to play. You don't need her to like you. You don't need her approval. Tell your husband that you are DONE with this. He needs to deal with her. Remember, you hold all the cards. You have the grandchild:).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To be honest (and I've dealt with a MIL like that before) - stop giving her information. She is miserable and unhappy with her life, but making her happy isn't your responsibility. She has at least one son who is being loyal to his family - your DH. His immediate family, which is you, your husband, and his children.

 

Stop sharing information with her. Either block her or put her on your restricted list on Facebook - if she asks why, tell her outright, "You know, MIL, you've been incredibly rude in your comments on my postings, and I decided I didn't want that to happen anymore." It doesn't need to be a long, drawn out discussion. Just say your piece and be done (Sometimes, wanting to keep rehashing it is SO tempting, but it really is more effective to just say it simply and succinctly, and be done.).

 

Cut down on the time you spend with her - considerably. When she does make a rude statement during a visit, leave. Or, if she's in your home, let her know that the visit is over.

 

This doesn't need to be an all out war. If you keep your calm, and hold to your battle lines - that you aren't going to tolerate anymore rude, obnoxious behavior, it will help you find a better place. It really will.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dh needs to put her in her place. At the very least he needs to tell her that she needs to keep her opinions to herself and any criticism from her will be met with him walking out of the room or hanging up on her. He needs to use phrases such as "WE don't allow..", "We've decided..." and take responsibility for the choices you two make together (such as moving, introducing foods, etc.). I'm sure she thinks YOU are the problem and not him. She needs constant reminding that that her son and you make these decisions together, that is why the "WE" talk is so important.

 

The only response other than that would be, "I'm sorry you feel that way. Pass the bean dip, please."

 

K

 

 

Exactly!

 

Reading these replies are making me feel so much better. I agree with all of you. Things are going to change ASAP. Dh is really upset. She was trying to sway him to side with her on the moving issue but all she has done is push him away. Hes very aggravated and said "We can't move fast enough."

 

I can't thank you all enough for the support.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

Reading these replies are making me feel so much better. I agree with all of you. Things are going to change ASAP. Dh is really upset. She was trying to sway him to side with her on the moving issue but all she has done is push him away. Hes very aggravated and said "We can't move fast enough."

 

I can't thank you all enough for the support.

 

 

I think she's a horrible woman for putting your dh in the position of having to choose between his mother and his wife. HORRIBLE.

 

But I don't think your dh has any choice but to tell her exactly the way things stand, and that his wife will always come first. This is a major power play, and your dh needs to put a stop to it. NOW. And you need to stop tolerating her poor treatment of you, too, because if you let her treat you like a victim (and by not talking back to her, you've done just that -- and you appear weak in her eyes,) she will never stop trying to boss you around or make you feel like a loser.

 

I'm so sorry you have such a rotten MIL. :(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Why confront her? She's not going to change. You are moving across the country.

 

Aren't you glad MIL sent those messages to your dh rather than you? Let him handle it.

 

Give her no real information. Give very vague answers to any questions. Block her on Facebook and delete any inappropriate posts she has made in the past.

 

Direct inappropriate suggestions to dh. Her: "Your baby's name is old fashioned, and I'd like to rename him." You: "Why don't we ask your son and my dh what he thinks about that. Say, dh, what do you think about your mother's suggestion?"

 

She sounds lonely and sad and a little desperate.

 

Before you move, you and your dh should decide what boundaries you will have when she visits.

 

I admire the restraint you've shown so far. I think you just need to show it a little longer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Your MIL is frustrated because she can't control your every move. It's HER problem, she is wanting something she can't and shouldn't have. You are frustrated because you want to have a reasonable relationship with her. She is unreasonable and you are probably never going to have a good relationship with her I would really work on accepting the fact that you guys won't ever have a good relationship. That alone may help your frustration level, the awareness and acceptance of that, as silly as it sounds. I would also stop engaging with her as much as I possibly could. Don't have any more contact with her than you absolutely need to. You are never going to get her to act reasonably, I doubt anything you say will ever change her. All you can do it stop being a doormat and taking her abuse.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cut off her flow of information from you. Unfriend her or restrict her on facebook. If she emails you, add her email to your spam blockers. Delete her text messages - or better yet, use one of those Blacklist Apps that throw way texts/calls from her number without ever showing them to you. Get caller id and don't answer the phone. If she leaves a message, your DH can listen to it and call her back if it's important.

 

Stop leaving your kid(s) alone with her. Really. Then, just get on with your life and enjoy the silence.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Isn't it great that you are moving? I would focus on that positive thought and block her from your Facebook ASAP.

 

Try not to get frustrated about her and then take it out on your dh. You don't want her to drive a wedge between you. It sounds like he is your ally. Vent to us instead.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly, she's in her place. Her own Crazy Palace, and she built it herself and those who want to join her will. It does sound like your dh does not want to live in her Crazy Palace, so she is there alone with her other son and her own dh. I would NEVER leave your kids with her, even for ten minutes, even to go to the bathroom, lol. Don't take her seriously, and don't give her power she doesn't have. You don't need to tell her things, and you don't need to respond to her craziness. Just let her become the family nut. Practice a knowing smile when people bring up her nuttiness. Learn to love bean dip, move on with your own life.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You all are so wonderful. You totally GET the situation perfectly. I am reading all the posts to dh... proving my point that no one else would take this off of her. He agrees with you all.

 

PP hit the nail on the head perfectly saying that all she wants is to control dh.

 

I would focus on moving, if it were a for sure thing.. but we are hoping and praying we get to move. Dh is applying at jobs in the area, we have paid off a lot of debt and are saving every dime we can. I hope it happens soon. Dh would be leaving a really good job which scares me to death, but I really feel like our family needs this. Believe it or not, Im not sure who is worse.. her or my mother.

 

We need OUT.

 

Thank you all so much!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DWIL, google it :). I was part of this group for years while putting up with my MIL's particularly aggressive brand of BS. I cut her off six years ago when she just stepped over the line one too many times. Buh-bye, the peace has been amazing. I did follow a set of steps, boundary setting and time outs, which she promptly stomped on, so she really left me no choice but to cut her off. Get DH on board first, stop the info train, leave if she starts being passive aggressive, DH needs to man up and cut the cord if he hasn't already. Good luck! It wasn't pretty when our issues came to a head.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have btdt! My MIL actually has he opposite tactic- she'd be very supportive of any of our decisions in front of Dh and then corner me alone and criticize how we do things, what we want to do, why we want to do it, etc. Very passive/aggressive.

 

I agree that moving sounds like a good move for your family. I'd also recommend reading Toxic In-Laws. That book really helped me see that my problems with my MIL (and SIL for that matter) really have everything to do with boundaries. Dh was born into a family with certain dynamics and it brings out the worst in people when they can't continue their way of doing things with their grown children because spouses enter the picture and change the dynamic.

 

The book showed me how important it is for me to establish boundaries with my Dh support for our family. Unfortunately, the book also explains that toxic family members will not respect or appreciate these boundaries and will instead push against them screaming, manipulating, and threatening. It still doesn't change the fact that those boundaries need to be set though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And I thought my mil was bad. Boundaries. Very firm boundaries. Based on my personal experience, a confrontation would not work but could possibly makes things worse. If that's possible. Boundaries like a concrete wall.

 

Just my experience.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My MIL is afraid of me (it's a long story but basically she railroads people to the point of it being a family joke and I don't put up with it).

 

Block her on FB - no explanation. Delete all her comments. Don't speak to her at all - let her calls go to voicemail, let your husband deal with ALL communication with her.

 

Definitely don't let her near your baby.

 

Take a deep breath and get excited about your move.

 

If you must see her in person, be polite but distant. Don't be rude, but don't tell her anything either. Talk in circles and change the subject. If she tries to engage and start a fight, blink a few times as if you have no idea what she is talking about and say you don't know, maybe she should talk to DH. She'll either escalate to obviously certifiable or realize you've won and try a different tactic.

 

As a native Floridian who's currently living in the midwest, welcome to Florida! You're going to love it! Just for the mental health benefits of being far away from MIL alone. Spend time on the beach. Find good sunscreen but don't rely on it - learn to notice when your skin feels hot and get out of the sun. Keep your kids out of the ocean at dusk and dawn due to sharks. Take meat tenderizer in your beach bag in case there's a jellyfish sting (pineapple enzymes destroy the protein). If you get a chance, see some natural non-tourist beauty too - Go swimming at some springs (avoid really hot days though - because of protozoa).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow...she sounds so much like my mother (I have never met my mil so I don't know what to expect lol) we moved across country to get away from my Mom. The relationship is fine now but we needed space (I was her only child she just couldn't let go)

 

I'd make the move, and hopefully the space will stabilize the relationship.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:grouphug:

 

okay - breathe. set hard and fast boundaries. time limits are helpful. there really is something to be said for "agree with thine adversary".

 

Yes mil dear - that is an old-fashioned name. ((NEVERTHELESS)) it is his name, and it is what your dear son and I have chosen to call him. rinse, wash, repeat as often as needed.

 

yes FL is long way from Ohio (YEEHAA!!!! - oops, did I say that out loud?), and we know how much you will look forward to a visit. (try not to gag)

 

yes mil-dear, children do enjoy their grandparents. (NOT *need*. she is NOT the kind of grandmother children "need".) nevertheless, we need to move to florida (do not tell her if it is to get away from her. you've got the upper hand, you can afford to be gracious and not rub it in.)

 

anyway - I hope you get the picture. My grandmother was worse - and dh had a delightful time just being overly cheerful and positive with her. It drove her absolutely insane. how can she complain that someone is "assuming" (however incorrectly) that she should be *thrilled* to be declared cancer free after five years? (you know, like *rational* people would be.) she hardly ever talked to him because he was making her nuts.

 

for me with my grandmother - I eventually set a 15 minute once a week phone conversation. if she was out of line - I said goodbye and hung up. getting some serious distance between your dh and his mother should be very good for him. limit the im'ing, skype, phone, and facebook contact too.

 

Do not be afraid to say good-bye walk away when she is inappropriate. if she has any intellectual honesty, she'll eventually figure it out and shape up around you. if she wants to compare your dh to the brother who does what she say - so what? wouldn't you rather have your self-respect? since it wastes your time to try to teach the pig to sing - just walk away because nothing will annoy the pig as much.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have btdt, but it was my own mother yet worse. We moved to a different state just to get away from my parents. I ended up having to unfriend and block both of my parents and sister on facebook, and when we got new phone numbers they were only given DH's number. He is much better at dealing with them than I am, so any contact from them is filtered through him. I told him that unless it is serious, I don't even want to hear about it. There are some pretty serious reasons behind this beyond her behavior, but my mother is much like your MIL. There is no pleasing her or making her happy and like a PP said, once I realized that my frustration level is a lot lower. I just know I need a mediator.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Keeping the peace has trained her that you will put up w her nonsense. If she starts WW3...that is on her. Tell her directly in the moment to cut iy. Unfriend her and put her on very low contact. Life is way too short. Also have dh deal with her for any communication...aka drop the rope.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd be deleting every single FB comment that was not benign, supportive, kind or was in any way passive/aggressive.

 

I'd be setting firm boundaries about what you will listen to/allow. You can't STOP her from talking, but you can decide what you will listen to and allow in your space.

 

 

I would also block her from making any future FB comments, as clearly she has lost that privilege.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Keeping the peace has trained her that you will put up w her nonsense. If she starts WW3...that is on her. Tell her directly in the moment to cut iy. Unfriend her and put her on very low contact. Life is way too short. Also have dh deal with her for any communication...aka drop the rope.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My MIL is afraid of me (it's a long story but basically she railroads people to the point of it being a family joke and I don't put up with it).

 

Block her on FB - no explanation. Delete all her comments. Don't speak to her at all - let her calls go to voicemail, let your husband deal with ALL communication with her.

 

Definitely don't let her near your baby.

 

Take a deep breath and get excited about your move.

 

If you must see her in person, be polite but distant. Don't be rude, but don't tell her anything either. Talk in circles and change the subject. If she tries to engage and start a fight, blink a few times as if you have no idea what she is talking about and say you don't know, maybe she should talk to DH. She'll either escalate to obviously certifiable or realize you've won and try a different tactic.

 

As a native Floridian who's currently living in the midwest, welcome to Florida! You're going to love it! Just for the mental health benefits of being far away from MIL alone. Spend time on the beach. Find good sunscreen but don't rely on it - learn to notice when your skin feels hot and get out of the sun. Keep your kids out of the ocean at dusk and dawn due to sharks. Take meat tenderizer in your beach bag in case there's a jellyfish sting (pineapple enzymes destroy the protein). If you get a chance, see some natural non-tourist beauty too - Go swimming at some springs (avoid really hot days though - because of protozoa).

 

 

How sweet are you! Thank you for the welcome :) I've wanted to be a Floridian my entire life!

 

 

Oh ladies, I can't tell you how nice it is to read these replies! I feel a lot better (Ive even laughed at a few of you!) I love the btdt's. I thought my mother was as bad as it gets. I definitely spent my childhood with a crazy, mentally/emotionally/physically abusive person... but now I have MIL too. I hope and pray we are able to move soon!

 

I hate seeing so many others that have had to deal with similar MILs.. I dont get it.. when I think about dc growing up and getting married (tear), I would never dream of treating their spouse that way.

:confused1:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

She sounds seriously unhealthy for "you all." If you weren't planning a move anyway, I'd consider one to get away from the toxic influence! Kudos for keeping the peace this long and not committing any jailable offenses against her, but a person can only take so much. Distance is good, but I think a few barriers are needed. Like, this Facebook commentary getting in. She needs to be hidden or unfriended or something. I wouldn't want to read any of her words. I'd accept phone calls only while the conversation is pleasant and polite. The moment it grows insulting or intrusive, WHOOPS, you gotta go.

 

I've lived in both Ohio and am currently in Florida. Florida's weather is so nice that it's hard to generate a bad mood for any length of time. I don't care for "dangerous critters," but I don't encounter them much. (for example, I think "pools are for swimming" and "lakes are for looking at, boating on, and waving to the alligators."

 

Good luck putting SPACE between you and this woman. If hubby can't/won't help, tell him you need to do what you must to keep your sanity. Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Uh, yes. You need to move yourselves away as fast as humanly possible. I think your family will find it much easier to breath in Florida.

 

ETA: Early in our marriage, dh sensed some danger coming from his mom, based on a few mild comments and other stories he'd heard from his SIL (fairly mild compared to many stories here). Somehow (maybe a bit of "foolish" youthful courage?) he came right out and told her that if she ever said anything to upset me that she'd never see us or her future grandchildren again. She resents "having to walk on eggshells around me", but she did take it to heart and has been generally fine. I am eternally grateful for his willingness to stick up for me in that way, but I understand how difficult it is when you have grown up with that kind of manipulation - his brother and SIL lived next door to my in-laws and worked in their business and struggled for many many years until they pretty much cut off all contact with the exception of occasional family gatherings.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Block her on FB - no explanation. Delete all her comments. Don't speak to her at all - let her calls go to voicemail, let your husband deal with ALL communication with her.

 

Definitely don't let her near your baby.

 

Take a deep breath and get excited about your move.

 

If you must see her in person, be polite but distant. Don't be rude, but don't tell her anything either.

 

 

I completely agree with this advice. Don't give her the satisfaction of a response to her ridiculous controlling behavior. Your dh can decide how much contact he should have with her, but you should have none and the children should have minimal, supervised contact. Maybe in the future she will change her tune, but for now you need to protect your marriage and your immediate family.

 

Also I think you made a mistake telling her about the move before it was finalized... I would suggest not giving her the chance to think she has input. In this case, I wouldn't mention it until the contract is signed on the new house!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

. Distance is good, but I think a few barriers are needed. Like, this Facebook commentary getting in. She needs to be hidden or unfriended or something. I wouldn't want to read any of her words.

there was awhile I tried to do a 'family' e-mail to let them know what was going on with our family. when my dd got into a pretigious-in-some-circles college, my sister did a reply all with a whackadoodle rant about the school. (sorry, I didn't know it took anything away from your dd. grandmother has been dead these last eight years (20 now), I thought she was the one who was that competitive. She trained sissy well. poor dear.) I was getting e-mails from dh's side asking who the nutjob was. the nutjob was cut-off. iow: your other facebook friends are probably wondering who this harpy is and don't want to read her words either.

 

here are some links you might find most informative with helpful suggestions. even if they don't fit your mother and mil - they should give some insight and useful ideas. wish I'd heard about them 20 years ago.

 

daughters of narcisstic mothers more practical information

and my personal favorite name, I adore the name, so accurate - "harpys child." reading this one was a true lightbulb moment for me dealing with memories of my grandmother. (my mother was an only child - so we were reared to think she was the cat's meow.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is your father in law just going along with all her nonsense? Is the brother passively putting up with this too?

 

The best antidote to nonsense is cold hard reality.

 

Creating a parallel universe where there are no real life consequences for appallingly bad behavior like hers isn't going to help her or you. Accept that she will not change no matter what you do. Do what's best for your family. Your hubby and you need to set very clear, specific boundaries and consequences for her behavior. Both of you need to be rigid about enforcing them-with him in the lead.

 

In real life people who write obnoxious, critical comments on FB get blocked.

 

In real life the parent who has said a child cannot have something immediately removes if from the child's hand and replaces it with something the child can have when someone disregards limits parents have set.

 

In real life people who criticize lifestyle decisions are not given information on more than a need to know basis.

 

In real life people who undermine relationships between father and son, mother and child, brothers, and husband and wife are severely restricted in how long they can be around and what will cause people to immediately leave a gathering. People tell them, "I don't talk to you that way and I won't let you talk to me that way" and then hang up on them when they're rude on the phone.

 

She is clearly mentally off and accommodating her "I know what's best for you" delusion is the worst thing your family can do for her and for yourselves.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We lived in Florida for 14 years. Never had a bit of a problem with alligators or murderers. Try it, I'll bet you'll like it.

 

Re the MIL, and her rants about your dc's name: "You have made your displeasure at X's name quite clear. However, that changes nothing. X is his name and X it shall remain. If you wish to have a relationship with him, you will call him by the correct name."

 

Re her comments about the move: "You have made your displeasure at our impending move quite clear. However, that changes nothing. If we find a situation that we wish to pursue in Florida or Maine or the big island of Hawaii, we will make our own choice of whether or not to move there. We have no doubt about how you feel. However, we will move if and when we feel like it."

 

Re the inevitable flack from cutting her off from your FaceBook and email: "You have made your displeasure with my decision quite clear. However, that changes nothing. Your posts were rude, inappropriate and annoying and I am done with them. You only hurt yourself when you spew such ugliness. I refuse to allow it to upset me or my family any longer. We will notify you if anything happens with us that we feel you need to know."

 

Let her know that you are aware of her complaint, that you don't plan to change based on that, that such outbursts will only prevent her from getting what she wants, and that you will not be controlled by her disapproval. End.of.story. Just because she had the biological good fortune to be able to give birth to the son who became your dh does not entitle her to ruin his life, your life, and those of your dc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm coming in late, but I've been there.

 

My mother was quite a terror. She was a master at emotional manipulation, and believed in over-the-top corporal punishment until I got big enough to fight back. Somehow when I was in college, I got it in my mind that I had to make my own way and to cut her off when she got ugly. And I did, many, many times over the years. She wanted to control every aspect of my life that she could, including choice of spouse, career, where I lived, etc. etc.

 

And no regrets at all. Being a rebel isn't all bad if there is abuse going on. My sibling that remained involved with her has significant issues.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I completely agree with this advice. Don't give her the satisfaction of a response to her ridiculous controlling behavior. Your dh can decide how much contact he should have with her, but you should have none and the children should have minimal, supervised contact. Maybe in the future she will change her tune, but for now you need to protect your marriage and your immediate family.

 

Also I think you made a mistake telling her about the move before it was finalized... I would suggest not giving her the chance to think she has input. In this case, I wouldn't mention it until the contract is signed on the new house!

 

 

 

I agree! But I knew she would have plenty to say, and I needed to know that dh wouldn't change his mind about the move before I really set my heart on it. Ive been trying to talk him in to moving to Fla for pretty much our entire marriage. Good news is, shes helping me out! Her outbursts make him want to move that much more. I win.

 

there was awhile I tried to do a 'family' e-mail to let them know what was going on with our family. when my dd got into a pretigious-in-some-circles college, my sister did a reply all with a whackadoodle rant about the school. (sorry, I didn't know it took anything away from your dd. grandmother has been dead these last eight years (20 now), I thought she was the one who was that competitive. She trained sissy well. poor dear.) I was getting e-mails from dh's side asking who the nutjob was. the nutjob was cut-off. iow: your other facebook friends are probably wondering who this harpy is and don't want to read her words either.

 

here are some links you might find most informative with helpful suggestions. even if they don't fit your mother and mil - they should give some insight and useful ideas. wish I'd heard about them 20 years ago.

 

daughters of narcisstic mothers more practical information

and my personal favorite name, I adore the name, so accurate - "harpys child." reading this one was a true lightbulb moment for me dealing with memories of my grandmother. (my mother was an only child - so we were reared to think she was the cat's meow.)

 

 

Yes, people have asked. My wonderful friends from co-op have been going out of their way to comment on pics of ds telling me how much they love his name :) :)

 

Is your father in law just going along with all her nonsense? Is the brother passively putting up with this too?

 

The best antidote to nonsense is cold hard reality.

 

Creating a parallel universe where there are no real life consequences for appallingly bad behavior like hers isn't going to help her or you. Accept that she will not change no matter what you do. Do what's best for your family. Your hubby and you need to set very clear, specific boundaries and consequences for her behavior. Both of you need to be rigid about enforcing them-with him in the lead.

 

 

 

 

 

My words exactly! I told Dh, "the only reason she keeps saying things is because you all let her." She knows she can say whatever she wants and no one is going to stop her. Well, not anymore.

 

 

I'm coming in late, but I've been there.

 

My mother was quite a terror. She was a master at emotional manipulation, and believed in over-the-top corporal punishment until I got big enough to fight back. Somehow when I was in college, I got it in my mind that I had to make my own way and to cut her off when she got ugly. And I did, many, many times over the years. She wanted to control every aspect of my life that she could, including choice of spouse, career, where I lived, etc. etc.

 

And no regrets at all. Being a rebel isn't all bad if there is abuse going on. My sibling that remained involved with her has significant issues.

 

 

You just described MY mother perfectly!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My MIL is afraid of me (it's a long story but basically she railroads people to the point of it being a family joke and I don't put up with it).

 

Oh, wow! See, I thought I was the only one whose MIL was afraid of them. OP, looks like you can join our little club. You've gotten some really great advice. My motto when dealing with the in-laws is that we work on a need to know basis and have determined that there is very little the in-laws need to know. It won't make your MIL like you or what you do any better, but it will make things far easier for you. Cut off the Facebook, don't accept text messages, let the phone go to voicemail, and all of the other advice you've received.

 

When the husband and I were first dealing with his parents, my mom reminded me of the saying: " A daughter's a daughter for the rest of her life. A son's a son until he takes a wife." Sadly, we've found this to be true.

 

It does get better, but the boundaries are key.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am so sorry to hear of what you and your DH are going through. I can relate, as your MIL sounds exactly like my dad. I grew up as an only child with this kind of crazy, so I can really empathize with you *and* your husband.

 

I found a wonderful book as a thirty year old that turned on the lights in my world: "Boundaries" by Cloud & Townsend. Highly recommended. Also "Safe People" by the same authors.

 

If you haven't been raised by a malignant narcissist, you might not realize just how crazy crazy can get. Both of my parents are totally out of touch with reality, and will lie to me about events where I was present, things I said, and what I think. The level of denial is truly frightening with this kind of mental illness.

 

Thank God you are moving 1000 miles away! Woo hoo! Great start! I left no forwarding address when I moved. :-)

 

Since you're asking for advice from those who have been there, here's a start:

 

1. Your husband needs to separate himself from his toxic parents, and he will need a lot of love and support to do that. It sounds like he had a lot of the same toxic guilt I had growing up and as an adult (still do when I'm stupid enough to contact my parents). Statements about him being "disloyal" because he's moving away, etc. are ridiculous. I heard similar.

 

2. If you are a Christian, please seek out a healthy church to help him through this. Some Christian churches have some very toxic ideas about family unity and loyalty to parents. These churches just make it worse. Most are healthy, though. My own church, Fellowship Bible Church in Atlanta, just had a series on some of these topics online (www.fellowshiproswell.org). I've spoken with my pastor personally about my own situation, and he's very understanding and supportive. His sermons might be helpful.

 

3. My husband and I cut off all contact between my parents and our children when my oldest was 8 months old. My father was already making creepy sexual comments about my baby while we changed his diapers, he berated us constantly to feed/do everything the opposite of what we were doing, and refused to put his methadone out of reach of our baby at his house. Yes, you read that right.

 

4. You owe these people nothing. Absolutely nothing. They are adults. They should know how to respect other people. They have no business overriding your decisions for your child (name, food, etc.). Now, it's candy. Next, it will be toys you don't want him to have. Who knows what they may give your son or enable him to do when he's a teenager. Stop it now. No one should ever teach your child to ignore his own loving and responsible parents.

 

5. Watch your credit, etc. Narcissists are identified by their sense of entitlement. In my case, my parents used my identity to rack up a lot of debt in my name when I was a teenager. They see nothing wrong with that to this day. They are angry that I would even mind having to spend years to pay off over $50,000 in debt I didn't willingly incur. That said, you might want to make absolutely sure that your in laws don't have any tax info of your husband's (SS#, etc., if you can), and consider freezing your credit reports after you complete your move (mortgage, utilities, etc.). With them remaining in your hometown, they are in a good position to abuse your credit via your old address.

 

Please don't wait for an ugly surprise to find out just how bad it can get. Protect yourself.

 

6. Please find a real world support group for people who have been in these kinds of family situations.

 

7. Don't worry about your kids growing up without this set of grandparents. My father's parents were also crazy, and I can honestly say I wish I'd been kept away from them. They were abusive to me as a child. I worried for years about what my kids would think of me when they got older for keeping my parents out of their lives.

 

They have gotten old enough to ask about my parents, and I've told them the age appropriate truth. They accepted it just fine and were very understanding. It will be ok.

 

8. Moving is a great opportunity to cut off all contact. I disagree that confrontation will help. Your MIL is mentally ill. You might as well talk to a brick. I spent 10 years going to four separate counselors with my parents trying to heal that relationship, and it was a total waste of time and anxiety. The prognosis for adults with narcissistic personality disorder is pretty grim. Cut the ties and move on.

 

Set up your phone where they can't reach you on demand. My husband set up my phone where my mother can call me and leave a message, but it doesn't ring through. I have no idea she called until I check my messages. It has taken away her ability to shoot my day down with a phone call.

 

It can get better. Please cut these toxic people out of your life. I promise it's ok. God Bless you.

 

GA Cub Mom

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...