What do I do if I can't stand my MIL.....???

[deleted account] ( 7 moms have responded )

Okay I could write for hours about all the crappy stuff my MIL has done to me over the years starting with the day of my wedding. She has issues. She lies all the time and manipulates. I am a psychologist and when I met my hubby I was young and fairly naive and she thought she could just do it to me and well, let's just say I am a boat rocker. But I am NOT mean... I am just always honest and strive to be authentic and generous and emotionally integrated with everything that I am and everything I do. I'm a trauma survivor and I do everything I have to do to keep myself from being retraumatized and it doesn't always work with my MIL. My husband sees it so the problem is not that he is upset with me but he's had 32 years to come to the point of just accepting her and feeling sorry for her and moving on. I can't seem to do it. She has done so much to hurt me and she also hurt my family (mom, dad, sister) who live 3000 miles away but she is so selfish... that is really the root of it. She is the most selfish person I've ever met and she is also deeply insecure. I do feel sorry for her but it doesn't matter how hard I try I can't come to a point of extending compassion towards her and I cringe at the thought of my children being alone with her. So that brings me to the real issue... yes, now we have kids and we're going to have more. Right now we have 2 daughters (28 months and 5 months) and they are absolutely spectacular girls... such a complete joy to be around - both are performers and super cuddly and happy girls. My 2 year old is REALLY verbal and smart and she picks up on things and I just simply don't trust my MIL to be with her. It's a real bummer because I need help sometimes and my parents and extended family are all 3000 miles away + some. The question is not about what do I do though because I can manage... I love my life and I am fine cutting her out of it and my husband wants to do what is best for my health and happiness but I don't want to be unfair. I mean, we all have problems, right? But she has done some really nasty stuff and her husband too and my hubby's brother has really done some crappy stuff to hurt us - he is incahoots with his mom. My hubby's dad is great though - he is a significant part of our life. This is weird for me because I have literally never dealt with this kind of stuff before. It was easy before kids and now I question my motives sometimes like I intentionally do whatever I can to keep my kids away from her when she does love them and she is good with them and I want them to have a grandma and uncle/aunt/cousins nearby. But what the heck do I do? Let me stop you too before saying I need to confront her and converse.... that is what I do for a LIVING - I mediate conflicts between governments and large organizations, consult for ngos and nonprofits, mediate nasty family court battles, etc.... and every stinkin' conversation I've had with her and her husband and the others is like falling on deaf ears. So.... is it fair to be so stingy with time? Should I just get over myself and face the fact that I am going to get hurt and be hurt but it's life? Should I keep trying to confront with her? I dunno I dunno I dunno..... this all takes WAY too much of my energy and emotions.


Katherine - posted on 12/02/2010




Hey, I have the perfect community for you where you can vent, and vent, and vent!!!! It's actually called "Mom's who need to Vent." http://www.circleofmoms.com/moms-who-nee...

That aside, I'm a psychology major too. One thing I've learned about people like that, is: They are NOT going to change. My mom is like that. She is horrible!! I always keep that glimmer of hope that maybe today, she'll get it. Nope. I have to come to terms with the fact that that is ow sheis and she will never veer away from that personality. Soooo, either I can ignoe her, or try to change a few things myself. Just to kee the peace ya know? I have oppositional defiance disorder in regards to my mom. I HATE being told what to do. I've ruined many, many relationships because of it. The thing you need to figure out is, what does this woman want?
Is she looking for more appreciation? Praise? Affection? She must be a miserable person IMO.

So anyways join the community and vent all you want ;)

[deleted account]

maybe I should start by WATCHING Monster in Law!?!?!? hahaha.... lemme be clear... I HAVE confronted her MULTIPLE times. She just burst into tears and acts like she has no clue what i could possibly be upset about.... and i wanna put my fist through the wall holding in how frustrated i am sometimes.


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Laura - posted on 12/03/2010




As a Psychologist you should be able to ubderstand her behaviors and why she might act the way she does. /she seems to like to play the victim, is quite manipulative, and passive/aggresive. It's also understandable that you want to at least be civil with her for your husband and children's sake. As previously mentioned--you will not be able to change her behavior; you can only control how you respond to hers. She behaves like any spoiled child; you wouldn't accept that kind of behavior from a child, why accept it from an adult? At least you can talk to you husband about setting limits and expectations of behavior while she is at your house. Control what you can and try to not take what she says and does too personally. Remember, she's the one who has the behavioral issues, not you. She will most likely never treat you respectfully and that is just the way she is. Confront her behavior only when she visits your house, otherwise let it be. She isn't someone worth investing a lot of your emotional time in; she will only feed on it like a vampire on blood and you know how vampire victims usually wind up! It sad actually that some people can only feel good by hurting others and being mean, but that is what bullies do...hope this helps a bit and good luck to you!

Sharon - posted on 12/02/2010




You're not being selfish, you're being proactive for the mental health of yourself and kids. Get rid of the witch.

Barb - posted on 12/02/2010




I have the funny feeling that MIL has just been reincarnated as yours. Good luck girl...she can be a real _itch. I shed so many tears over her and how she treated me AND my daughter. I guarantee if she treats you this way, she will also treat your kids with jabs as they get older. Mine would send $ for Christmas. My daughter got 1 dollar in quarters. The rest of the grandchildren received $100 ea. She made no secret of what she did either. Like you, her sons and daughter took her side and stirred the pot as well. I even developed migraines during this time. Like your husband, mine saw what she was doing BUT never had the backbone to confront her on it. I was fortunate that they moved 1500 miles away to Fla when my daughter was in 3rd grade. While she no longer heard from Grandma about how unfair she was, my daughter was well aware of it. I can only hope for you that they pick up and move. On the better side, like you, I love my FIL. I talk to him regularly and try to convenience him to move in with us. I wish I had seen the movie 'MONSTER IN LAW". Had I seen it, I would of handled her very differently. Kid gloves would have been off and I would have confronted her head on.
This goes to the "I BET YOU CAN'T BEAT THIS MIL STORY" My MIL called me at work and invited us (husband and I) up for dinner. I accepted with a thank you very much and will see you after work. When we got there she proceeded to the upstairs bathroom and stayed there until we left...6 hours later. I hope her a$$ hurt for a month! Can you top that? See what you have to look forward to if you don't confront her. Best of luck.

Vanessa - posted on 12/02/2010




My first MIL was pretty much exactly as you describe yours!
I left my husband the day I was chatting to her at the top of a staircase - and I actually pictured myself pushing her down the stairs and wanted to do it.
It was my sign the marriage was over :-(

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