If you feel you've been beating a dead horse with me with regard to my mother in law...

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Shari, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Well, sometimes dead horses get up. :tongue:

    Ok, so they don't. This horse wasn't dead. It was hearing you and it was trying, it was just stuck in the muck. And finally has found some footing.

    I posted earlier about my mother in law buying easy child 2 a Nintendo DS and telling her to hide it from us. That was the final straw for this camel.

    husband had made a deal with me about going there for Thanksgiving and Christmas and he hadn't held up his end of it. We hadn't talked to the in-laws about any of the junk. But after this, I was so angry, I was physically shaking and ill, and apparently husband beleived that his second chance in this deal was over. I told him to make arrangements to see his daughter somewhere else. I called the tutor to cancel. I blocked his ex and his mom from my phone and email. If they were going to treat us like that, he could deal with it alone; I'd expect it from his ex and the options are limited as to what to do there; but if he's not willing to stand up to his mother for himself, his wife, his step-son (who's called him daddy for 4 of the 6 years of his life), and his DAUGHTER, I was done trying to have a positive impact on her at my expense (monetarily, emotionally, time-ly, in every way) - he could go it alone.

    He quietly said he did not blame me. Nothing more was said until Tuesday night, when he asked me to go to his folks' house to talk with them. I agreed.

    My husband stood up for me.

    His father was truly hurt that I felt as I do, I tried to explain it was mostly mother in law who did this. I will clarify with him this weekend when I see him.

    But I don't think mother in law got it. She took "don't encourage your granddaughter to lie and don't buy her carp when I say its something she can't have" to mean she can never buy easy child 2 anything. He went over it and over it and finally told her that yes, if the only two options she saw in this were to go against him and hide things or to not buy anything at all, she'd better not be buying anything.

    She kept saying I needed to learn to run my own house. husband kept telling her we could - and that's why we were there - to tell them to butt out.

    Very early on, when he told her she needed to either treat me the same as everyone else in the family or stop just expecting to use the things I brought to this relationship without asking me directly, she immediately said she would buy her own trailer. It came up later and she didn't jump to that solution, so hopefully, hopefully, something got thru to her.

    We also found out that mother in law bought the DS alone. She only wrangled easy child 2's mom and other grandma into it by giving it to easy child 2 in their presence. easy child 2 thinks mom and other grandma were in on it, tho.

    BUT - we covered a lot of ground that night. I know we didn't hit it all, but when we left, father in law said they would try harder and he was sorry. mother in law didn't say anything, but she did invite us to dinner last night, which is a night we don't have easy child 2. I went (despite being exhausted) and it was pleasant. I apologized for allowing it to take two full years before coming to a head. And I think mother in law is truly having a hard time grasping how "don't tell your dad" is the same as encouraging easy child 2 to lie. Certainly no excuse, but seriously, I don't think she gets it.

    We discussed wee difficult child, also, and some things were said about him that made me pretty angry (basically, he's spoiled - you know the routine). husband stuck up for us both, too. He said there are battles I'm not willing to fight, but that doesn't make difficult child spoiled - it means he has problems and we have to find a balance in order to live. They didn't buy it, but that's nothing new. So long as they are willing to try, so will I.

    If you've made it this far, I really was hearing you guys. I really was trying to do what you told me. This muck-stuck horse might be climbing out of the swamp.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2009
  2. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator


    It's not easy to deal with extended and blended families when everyone isn't on the same page. Most of those families just drift apart. I'm proud of you, husband, father in law and yes even mother in law. Just realize it isn't over yet. Not by a long shot. :winks:
  3. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Oh, no fear, TM. I have no doubt. I don't even expect mother in law to really change her ways. Tho now that father in law is aware, he may try to rein her in a little.

    I'm not even sure it will end when she's dead. That's probably my biggest fear.

    But easy child 2 knows right from wrong, and that if she lies to us again like this, even if grandma told her to, the price is hers to pay. I am prepared to step out of the picture regarding her and the rest of husband's family if need be. Doing that may cost me husband in the long run, but that's a risk I'll have to take.

    FWIW, I'm sure she will lie again. I just hope its typical teen stuff that we deal with and move on, I'm not so dead-set as to think she'll be truly easy child from here on. But I think she and husband understand that if this type scenario plays out again, there will be changes. I can't change my mother in law. I can't change anyone but me. But I won't put up with husband accepting it anymore, or easy child 2 playing with those kinds of rules.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2009
  4. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    :bravo: yay for husband. I'm glad he stood up for you. I despise that sort of behind your back behavior like m i l. By telling a child "don't tell your parents", they undermine your authority. I would have been furious too.
    Glad the dead horse is up and starting to move around.

    There is hope with in laws. We went through a 12 yr phase of me being polite with in laws because of some hurtful things m i l said. I withdrew and was not my usual self around them. I would never confront her or be rude out of respect for my husband but it was cool. For some reason in the last year or so, I have become their beloved d i l. I'm still shaking my head since I am not aware of doing anything different. So don't despair they may come around and think you are the best thing since sliced bread.
  5. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Shari YEA! For husband for standing up for you!!! That probably had more impact on mother in law than anything.

    Keeping fingers crossed that at the very least this mellows her out a little.

  6. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    I'm glad husband took a stand. It was a long time coming.

    I bet father in law had a talk with mother in law, too.
  7. ML

    ML Guest

    This was a huge clearing of the air. That husband stood up for you and that you presented a united front was HUGE. I am so happy, Shari. You are smart to keep expectations low too. I am very pleased with husband today. He gives me hope for the future of *man*kind lol.
  8. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I am so proud of you Shari. You may not be able to change anyone, but you can set up the standards of their behavior in your world. You can decide if lying and hiding things are accepted or not in your home. If they don't like it, they can stay away.

    I am appalled at her telling you that you need to run your own house. That is exactly what you have been doing all along. She is the one not listening to that. easy child 2 is part of your house and the decisions made must be upheld by mother in law. mother in law must stop trying to run your house.

    mother in law also has to learn that easy child 2 is husband's daughter - he gets to make the decisions with his ex. mother in law has no say in it, she had her chance of being a mom to husband, now it is husband's job to be the dad. Just like everyone else in the entire world, she must allow husband to parent as he sees fit and not interfer.

    No one is a perfect parent. However, if there is disagreements made known to the child (your parents said 'no' but there really is nothing wrong with doing this just don't tell them) it is just confusing to the kid. The child will take the two opposing views and choose the easiest/funnest one thus looking for a way out his/her entire life. "But mom/dad, so and so said it would be o.k." When that so and so is a relative, it is harder to fight. If it appears that a parent is wrong, it is not up to anyone else (MILs included) to destroy that decision by directing the child that mom/dad were wrong. They have to respect that decision and help the kid make the best of it. "I wish this wasn't hard for you, but your mom and dad are doing what they believe is right for you. Try to accept it."
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2009
  9. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    Shari, your mother in law is one horse that needs to be beaten over and over again--LOL. Seriously, I enjoy your posts because I am amazed at what she will do next. She just seems to top herself each week. I think your stand is a good one. My mother in law was much like yours. She always treated sister in law's children (who lived in her backyard) as the ugly stepsisters and my children were the Cinderella's. It got ugly several times over the years. My husband always stood up for me. Once he told her, if you make me choose, I will choose my wife. She finally stopped when she had her stroke. After that she was the sweetest woman to me. It's sad it took ill health to make her change.
  10. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Way to go!!! Me and the In-laws are in sorta the same boat!!! This is the year of growth!!!!
    Good for husband. There is hope
  11. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I have no doubt there will be more Stories from the Broom Closet. I will be sure to share because I actually find it ridiculously humerous, also.

    A little ironic update...just learned that easy child 2 is not allowed to speak on the phone with her friends or go to visit. Apparently she's been stealing the DS at her mom's and playing it in the middle of the night there, too.

    Great idea mom and grandmas. Enjoy dealing with it! You created it!
  12. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Yay, Shari! Glad husband stood up for you! Fingers crossed that things improve for you.
  13. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Way To Go!! You really made thoughtful adult choices that should lead to a happier extended family life for everyone. I'm proud of you. DDD
  14. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Oh, Shari, that was well done! Good for you, for making husband see your side and that he needed to develop a backbone, and good for you for holding it together in the face of your mother in law.

    Some people really don't get it. When we have to deal with other people,e that limits how well we can get done what wwe want, because other people are always able to throw a spanner in the works. But standing up to them politely but firmly - well done!

    Of course this doesn't mean everything is going to be perfect, and I fully expect more instalments in the Broom Closet stories. You can't teach an old b**** new tricks (I meant "broom", honest!). All you can do is what you are doing.

    Hang in there.