mother in law still needs to have brick wall falling onto her (ventish)

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by SuZir, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Leave it to my mother in law to spoil my perfect weekend. I did ask tips for perfect murder last spring, when she tried to exclude difficult child from mother's day celebrations. I did let her live that time, because there was a stain in my funeral attire and no black clothes in stores. Now that problem is out of the way and I again feel like strangling her.

    difficult child is graduating soonish. He did have his finals (similar to International Baccalaureate finals)and while we don't know the final exam results yet (they are curved and exams are graded both by kids' own teachers and then national board), we do know he is graduating with really tippy top grades, likely to be best ones in his school at least in a year or two. High School graduations tend to be big parties around here. Up to hundred guests are not uncommon and to be honest, they tend to be quite a bragging parties. difficult child doesn't want anything like that. I have to admit I was upset about that first and luckily he did give me time to get used to the idea. Now I'm totally okay with him not going to his graduating ceremony (he has a game at the same day) and we having small dinner party after the game with only his closest people present. And I do admit mother in law didn't have that time to think it over, but still she managed to make me so mad over this.

    I told her difficult child will not have a big party, just dinner with us (me, husband and easy child), them (mother in law and father in law), his godparents and his girlfriend and maybe girlfriend's parents and sister. mother in law went ballistic. She ranted how difficult child of course had to screw also this up. That when my useless son once in his miserable life does something (those excellent grades) that is not a total embarrassment for her (mother in law), then that he wants to hide, when his every failure is so public. She also declared that she or father in law are not going to come and she will call her daughter (other of difficult child's godmothers) and tell her that they shouldn't come either. Well, that one won't fly, difficult child's godmother/aunt is not going to not come because her mother tells her so. But I don't really know if I should just laugh, cry and be hurt or simply strangle her.

    To be honest, in reality it will be easy to get her to participate or at least fake illness and send father in law (that would probably make a much nicer party, but difficult child would guess what is going on, he is a smart cookie after all even with all his defects and he knows mother in law), if I want to. I only have to wonder aloud what will difficult child's other godparents (my good friends, highly esteemed people if you ask mother in law) or difficult child's girlfriend's parents think, if mother in law and father in law are boycotting the graduation party of their oldest grandchild. That will make her change her mind. But right now I'm not sure if I want her there. And I don't want to tell anything about this to difficult child. In the end this is not so much about him. It is about me. mother in law really doesn't like me and because husband (her golden boy) stands up for me sooner or later when she harps on me, she tends to harp on difficult child (while pretending to be just a worried granny.) Luckily mostly when difficult child is not present.

    On the other hand I do know I should probably be worried about mother in law. She has always been a piece of work but this is extreme even for her. She was almost out of control when she kept on ranting about difficult child. And it is not only about me or difficult child. She has been really prickly with neighbours, her own unfavoured children other relatives etc. lately. I can't say I would had noticed any major memory issues with her and she is still on her sixties, but I have wondered about dementia few times before during last year.

  2. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Ugh. Wrt the dementia, when was her last physical? I'd deal with that first. She is being a total PITA. I'd be so tempted to just let her stay home, but what would difficult child want?
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I would bluntly remind mother in law that this has nothing to do with her and everything to do with celebrating difficult child's accomplishment. She can either participate or not. This is difficult child's moment to shine, the kid should be able to enjoy his moment the way he wants, not be miserable at some huge party meant to show him off like a prized cow.

    A smaller more quaint celebration doesn't prevent her from bragging to everyone she knows or who will listen, which is a grandparents right.

    Dementia? Maybe some early signs. But probably not since this is somewhat normal behavior for her. For some personality flaws intensify as they age and can grow even worse as they feel it is their right (due to age) to say whatever they happen to think regardless of the consequences.

    Be proud of difficult child. Personally, I'd smile that mother in law has a thorn in her side (I'm odd I know), and enjoy the moment as it only comes once.

    Way To Go difficult child!!!

  4. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Miss KT's grandmother tends to harp on her as well, and didn't bother to show up for her high school graduation (and she's the only grandchild), among other things. Miss KT is so disgusted with her she's ready to write her off. I'm to the point where I don't even react anymore...drives the old bat even crazier.

    It's difficult child's graduation, and I think he should have the kind of get-together he wants, no matter what the prevailing fashion is.
  5. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    I'm just going to say, "Heck no!". Tell her she needs to stay home. I would also laugh at her when she says something nasty. She sounds like she's trying to get you upset. Just laugh at her- she'll hate that, plus she'll hate that she's not getting under your skin. I know she is, don't show her that!
  6. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    I would like to do nothing more than tell mother in law she is not welcome with attitude like that. Unfortunately this is not my graduation party but difficult child's. difficult child is well aware mother in law keeps favourites and isn't shy on showing that. And that he is certainly not a favourite. But still not having his grandparents there would hurt. Especially then it is not just mother in law, but father in law is also likely to do as mother in law tells him to. And difficult child adores his grandpa.

    father in law is one of those silent guys who hate controversy. He does almost anything to keep the peace. And in that household only way to keep the peace is to do as mother in law wants to. father in law is smart but absent minded and introvert, much more of an observer than wanting to be middle of things. Quite a wise and perceptive guy if you take your time to get to know him. He and difficult child used to be very close. father in law was a part-time farmer and they live very near us. When difficult child was small, he would had followed father in law all day long when he was working on the fields. And father in law often took him with to 'help.' difficult child even had his own safety seat in both tractor and combine harvester. And when father in law was fixing something, difficult child was there keeping flash light and giving things for him.

    difficult child would be very disappointed if father in law wouldn't come and I'm not sure if father in law would man up and come against mother in law's wishes or not.
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2012
  7. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Truthfully I don't have any great advice. My only thoughts are (l) difficult child "knows" that she is a troubled woman and they she readily has negative opinions. So, is it possible to reference that in an off hand way like "your Grandmother isn't a compromiser, lol, so let's be prepared for her to boycott our small family party". (2) IF she continues to refuse to accept the intimate party, could you arrange for his Grandfather to share a man/man lunch with difficult child? Hugs DDD
  8. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    mother in law throwing a fit is certainly nothing new and difficult child is well aware of her behaviours. If I have to, I can tell him grandma decided to throw a fit again over something and I'm not sure how it will work out. Just now I just wouldn't like to bother difficult child with family drama. He has enough to deal with his own issues. mother in law has thrown fits in the past over much smaller things, but there is some subtle differences that kind of make me worried. I have always felt her fits are totally planned and she does have them to keep control of her children and father in law. I'm quite sure about that, because over the years I have become very good at predicting when she will throw a fit and how it will resolve itself. I can't guess what is an exact topic that causes a fit (it has been anything starting from colour of the napkins at sister in law's garden party), but timing and outcome I can often predict. But this one seemed somehow so uncontrolled and I don't really know what she could be after.

    I did expect some whining about the timing (it is inconvenient, next day is a holiday many do have plans for, fortunately usually for the evening, but fall graduating day has been the same closer to hundred years, they are not going to change that), having to drive six hours this time of the year, dinner being so late (because of the game) that we either have to drive back through night or have a night at a hotel there. I also did expect she would not be happy with no big parties. But I did expect her to use it to guilt something out of husband, not to go to full-blown fit.

    In the past I would had been sure that after we get her to come, she would behave herself at the party. Maybe some snide curve balls, but no biggies. And let's face it, these people know mother in law. We have spent difficult child's every birthday and every other party with these same people starting from his christening. Only difficult child's girlfriend and her parents/sister are new. Everyone else has seen mother in law going all kinds of worried grandma routines to bring up all difficult child's faults etc. Nothing new to anyone. And because of difficult child's other godparents and girlfriend's parents mother in law would probably be on her better behaviour, especially if I make husband talk to her beforehand and ask not to embarrass him or easy child by implying to difficult child's issues. And I do not believe she would want to hurt difficult child really. He is not her favoured grandchild and suffers the residues of mother in law's disliking me, but I can't believe mother in law wouldn't have some love and caring towards him too.

    I'm sure father in law would do something to make his absence up for difficult child. difficult child's adoration of his grandpa is not unrequited. But of course it wouldn't be the same.

    Luckily we still have few weeks time and I can work on this and push mother in law's buttons. I just hope she doesn't plan to keep me guessing till the last moment. Of course if she does that, it would likely mean she is coming, just wanting to make me squirm. I do hope there will be a day I don't have to play her games, but unfortunately cost of that would still be too high for husband and easy child. Maybe after easy child is an adult.
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Lord Im glad I dont have a mother in law. Of course I am a mother in I am betting I am not a mother in law that is well liked by at least one daughter in law. Cory's girlfriend likes me okay. Jamie's wife...well...we are on a "see each other as few times as possible" routine.
  10. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    I was about to say that I wouldn't mind not having a mother in law at all too. But then again, I would. I may not like her much and she certainly isn't a peach, but she is in fact very loving and good grandma to easy child. And fiercely loyal and adoring to husband (which is likely a part why she doesn't like me.) And she does have some amusement value when she is not after me or difficult child. And I can't deny that having her and father in law so close has helped us a lot with kids. And they really were very helpful. mother in law often looked after kids when they were sick and couldn't go to day care or school so I or husband didn't have to skip work and mother in law and father in law helped out with driving kids around to hobbies etc. when we couldn't make schedules work. I'm thankful for that.

    And of course, like in every relationship, there is two people in my and my mother in law's relationship and I certainly have to own part of the responsibility in how our relationship has turned out.