Does anyone else's mother-in-law...

Bridget - posted on 11/21/2009 ( 288 moms have responded )

260

10

33

I'm venting here!!!! Out of curiousity, does anyone else's mother-in-law totally favor some of her grandchildren over the others? My MIL has 4 grandchildren, 2 are my husband (and my) children & 2 are my husband's sisters children. At Christmas, she will spend literally thousands on the other 2 & scrimp & save when it comes to my children. It's outrageous to me how much of a difference she makes. The bad thing is that the presents are all opened together at Christmas & my children can see how much of a difference she makes. It angers me & breaks my heart for my children who's feelings are being hurt.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Janet - posted on 11/28/2009

2

0

0

I used to take my children some extra presents to my in-laws and put them under the tree and I mark them from Santa. A sutle hint that did help the situation a little!!! I have several friends with the same problem and nothing worked. Talk to your in-laws and to your children about the problem, some hurts can't take away but talking about things help. God bless you and yours and I am sorry for your heartache!!! When your children hurt, it is the awful!!! My children are grown and as a mother I still want to take their hurt away and protect them. They have grown into great young men and still love their grandparents, that showed the partiality but are not as close to them as they are to my parents.

User - posted on 11/24/2009

2

26

0

The common thread here is mil favouring their daughters children. The theory behind this, scientifically, is that their daughters children are most definately their grandchildren, whereas their sons family may not actually be his biologically and he may not even know! It's very 'caveman' but is still going strong in the modern day!
This will not improve matters with the mil from hell but at least you know now lol.
i agree with many of the above posts refuse to go open presents at the same time as the in-laws offering an explanation if necessary. its a crying shame the kids realise whats going on and they should not be subjected to it any longer.........good luck! x

Donna - posted on 12/01/2009

5

0

0

I am a grandmother of 3 boys, with a girl due any day now1 I try to spend the same amount of money on each of my grandchildren. I would never never hurt my grandchildren like that. They are my life.

Natasha - posted on 11/30/2009

2

8

0

Two weeks ago, on Morgan's birthday, I received an sms from my mom to wish her a happy birthday. Not a word from her to Neil though (he turned 12 yesterday.) I weep for my son because his granny forgot him again...

[deleted account]

Children need to be protected from such heartless people!!! My ex-mil favors my second born son.....is sweet to my oldest her step-grand child and does not really take to my last born even though he is her blood.......I have made it clear that I will not tolerate the differences made. She still tries by inviting Tyrone to sleep over and not his brother....I told her both will sleep over or no one.......and she wonders why we do not visit..LOL

This conversation has been closed to further comments

288 Comments

View replies by

Donna - posted on 12/01/2009

5

0

0

I am a grandmother of 3 boys, with a girl due any day now1 I try to spend the same amount of money on each of my grandchildren. I would never never hurt my grandchildren like that. They are my life.

Donna - posted on 12/01/2009

5

0

0

I am a grandmother of 3 boys, with a girl due any day now1 I try to spend the same amount of money on each of my grandchildren. I would never never hurt my grandchildren like that. They are my life.

Donna - posted on 12/01/2009

5

0

0

I am a grandmother of 3 boys, with a girl due any day now1 I try to spend the same amount of money on each of my grandchildren. I would never never hurt my grandchildren like that. They are my life.

Donna - posted on 12/01/2009

5

0

0

I am a grandmother of 3 boys, with a girl due any day now1 I try to spend the same amount of money on each of my grandchildren. I would never never hurt my grandchildren like that. They are my life.

Kerri - posted on 12/01/2009

22

41

1

Have you or your husband tried talking to her about it? I would just let her know that it hurts the kids feelings and that if she is going to continue to do this you would appreciate it if she would give the kids their gifts at seperate times. Let her know it isn't about the gift or money spent but it is about the kids feeling loved less than the others.

Violet - posted on 12/01/2009

5

20

0

Yes, it is common for this stuff to happen...I'd speak to your mother-in-law and let her know that its obvious and that you and your children are being hurt if she doesn't stop maybe she can do it in confidence so that your kids don't see it...



My mom actually told my grand ma no thanks once and returned what she thought was an unfair gift distribution and let her know that she'd keep returning them if she continued...she definately slowed down..Good Luck this situation is definately not an easy one...

Kelly - posted on 12/01/2009

2

8

0

In ala-anon I've learned "you either accept it or don't" accept it AS IS; if you choose to accept it, you can not get bitter, resentful etc.. those will be your character defects. my daughters, now teens, have NO desire to see the paternal side of their family.

Kelly - posted on 12/01/2009

2

8

0

totally. my now EX MIL favored the oldest gchild by much by my EX husbands first marriage. In the end, she doesn't see that gchild, or our 2 daughters. it's basically if you don't kiss her butt, forget you. and she does it well. She never liked, actually resented my oldest child in fear that she would knock the other gchild out of the race. There just isn't enough love in her heart. Out of 5 gchildren, she sees 2. doesn't even try to contact the others. If she did, I suppose she would have to focus on herself and not be able to place the blame on everyone else. I feel your pain... straight from birth 13 yrs ago.

Jaclyn - posted on 12/01/2009

66

6

3

Well my mother in law has nothing to do with her 2 grand sons untill she has a boyfriend then play happy granny...we have told her to straighten herself out or she'll never see us again...she doesn't seem that worried...i hate her guts! I think its a mother in law thing lol.

Nakita - posted on 11/30/2009

121

26

18

same here i just had a baby girl 5 months ago, and my fiance sister is due today!! but anyways the baby is not even here yet and already their mother is favoring HER child. its crazy, like for my baby shower i got a coupe of sleepers and she made the bedding by hand for a craddle that some one had made us. for my fiance's sisters shower she got the bedding for the craddle (same person made her the same craddle) and all the bedding for her crib,bumper pads, wall hangings,sheets,blanket, dipper holder, curtins,you name it she got it! and she acting like shes more excited for my fiance's baby then she ever was for mine.

Karen - posted on 11/30/2009

3

7

0

I agree Dawn, as I said before. The children do know the difference and don't need to be subjected to that from any adult - especially their grandparents!

Dawn - posted on 11/30/2009

7

53

0

I have read several of the comments. Could you please tell me what has happened at this point? My advice would be a combination of some of the others. I personally think the first step is either yourself or your husband talking to her. Not sure how close ya'll are but if she is not willing to change, I would refuse to be there for Christmas with the family. Simply tell her that you will not put your kids through it.

Carolyn - posted on 11/30/2009

3

23

0

Quoting Laura:

I actually am on the other side of this...my mom always buys extra gifts for my kids cause I am a single mom and slightly broke...is it possible that she thinks the other kids NEED the help?



I agree that maybe she thinks the other kids NEED the help.  When there are those less fortunate enough not to get as much, or to get the love and care they should have  - then they are the ones that should be looked after more.  But I can understand why Bridget would be upset, especially if they are given the extra in front of the other children, because they may not understand why they get less. 

Frances - posted on 11/30/2009

2

2

0

I have three children and two of the children belong to my current husband and my MIL favors my daughter over my sons and gets mad when husband buys more toys for the boy than girl. For one she is only 18 months and my son is 5years old. I found out that she favors one son over the rest of her children and he gives her the most grief. I understand totally and that is why she lives in her own apartment and we continue treat our children the same and I hope you can explain to your husband and MIL that what pain she is causing. Good Luck!

Jeanette - posted on 11/30/2009

3

8

0

My mother-in-law has always favoured our daughter Krystal over our son David because she is the oldest grandaughter on my husbands side of the family. She also spends more money on her for her birthday and Christmas and this is starting to annoy me as I am her daughter-in-law. In the past she would also try to bribe David in to going out to the farm here in S.A. In 2006 my father-in-law got very upset wondering why his grandson David didn't want to go to the farm for a holiday like Krystal did. I did not want to tell him the reason why was because of his wife's behaviour in the past. Unfortunately, he passed away suddenly in April 2007.

Apple - posted on 11/30/2009

14

19

2

i was going to say i get it-til i read last comment about the shopping trip!!!!!

omg!!!

she sounds like a nitemare-divorce the woman-hey drew barrymore did it!

Apple - posted on 11/30/2009

14

19

2

i was going to say i get it-til i read last comment about the shopping trip!!!!!

omg!!!

she sounds like a nitemare-divorce the woman-hey drew barrymore did it!

Roshni - posted on 11/30/2009

3

7

0

just avoid going to meet the MIL at the same time the other kids are around. let them meet their cousins seperately at christmas. try and come to an agreement with your husband or the same. Spare them the heartburn, u are responsible for their happiness..

Sharleen - posted on 11/30/2009

12

12

0

yes mine wont even see hers we have 4 kids togther and one on the way she has not seen them in 3 years. she told my husbond that they r not his kids. my frist is my ex-husbonds. so as far as she is conserned im the wolds biggst you know what and she wont have any thing at all to do with them. at frist she did but not much and she would try and get my husbond to leve me and the kids.saying that there not urs so dont fill bad for leveing them.and to make things wore my bortherinlow and his partner had a baby 6 weaks after we had our baby girl they torned up here and took everthing that they ever gave my husbond for our kids and told him that it needs to stay in the faimly and that her kids meaning mine hade no rights to them. they give this kid everthing and anything and wont even talk to mine. and she looks after this kids 3 days a weak. and has made him his own room at her place. so this is what it is like to have a mother in low from hell !!!!!!!! hope things get better for you them me...

Joyce - posted on 11/29/2009

2

7

0

Well, I love all my grandchildren even my the two by another marriage, so I do not have a problem in that area. But I do know people who do and it is sad, as it is not the childrens fault. Someone really needs some healing as she should not be taking her feelings of anger out on the children. This individual really needs some prayer and counsel.

Adele - posted on 11/29/2009

3

11

0

Know that feeling, did try talking and explaining, but we are seeing things that does not exist. The best thing for me was not to be with them on x-mas. Someday she must not cry when the children are big and does not have any feelings for her. You have all my symphathy

Deborah - posted on 11/29/2009

2

11

0

What a great diplomatic idea! I love it....give presents in her name to the kids, LOL! It would certainly spare their feelings. Although, someone that tacky & mean will probably find a way to thwart that effort & get back at you for it.

Deborah - posted on 11/29/2009

2

11

0

This goes on for all kinds of reasons, but it doesn't matter why! This display of lack of consideration is unnecessary & you should put a stop to it! The children don't need to have it in their memories. Just stop opening presents together! You can be truthful or diplomatic, but just stop it! Many, many grown vindictive adults continue to play out their petty games at the expense of helpless children & others. If she can't/won't understand, then it is your responsibility to put a stop to it. Even if you recieve no presents.

Carrol - posted on 11/29/2009

1

14

0

This is one manipulative woman. Does your husband not see what is happening? It is HIS mother and he needs to say something to her, or say you will come over later when the others have left. Better still, invite only her to your home with her presents for your children!

Sarah - posted on 11/29/2009

185

8

5

I don't have in-laws, yet maybe someday,lol. However, my grandmother spoils only one grandchild- my aunts son "because he doesn't have a father" and that was my aunts choice.The daughter she faves is always making bad choices, has three kids from two guys and is divorcing a third guy (luckily her 1st marriage, so far -she says), she lives on drama and trashes her sister who has done nothing but helped her all the time. My gram even talks about one of her daughters and says that her daughter's husband family must have black in them because her sons are dark in the summer- their french! Yes my gram is unfortunately racist, which I HATE!!! My gram also never wants us to visit or come stay for a night, my other aunt and I wanted to go down for thanksgiving, maybe out somewhere nice (with our kids) and she said no, she doesn't have room. Then this year my aunt who she faves. asked to go down and it was Yes we love to have you and the kids. My daughter and I didn't have anywhere to go this thanksgiving!! My gram did call 2 days before, but its a long drive and didn't have money for a hotel, so I couldn't stay with her or one of my other aunts house even those that we're they were all staying. She now buys all the grand kids something for Christmas, but when we started having a family party she was in the name drawing for the kids and one kid would get one present while all the others got two because she would buy for all but didn't realise that she also had a name. that was once because we stopped that. But she still gives the grandchild she faves $100 gift card and everyone else $20 gifts. i agree its not about the gifts, its about what it stands for though.

One of my aunts, her mil would fave her oldest because he looked just like his dad. they have three boys. She buy them all shirts for a vaca the oldest say -I'm cool with a shark, and the other two got matching ones (their two years apart) that's said- I'm trouble! Come On!!

There should not be favs, but there are. I don't understand it and probaly never will.

Kathy - posted on 11/29/2009

688

32

24

My MIL doesn't, but shes only got one grand baby, BUT my grandma on my dads side of the family did that. It actually contributed to us kids really not liking her at all. It was a level of feeling left out and neglected, almost unloved. Not only would she do it at Christmases when the family was together and we could see it, I mean see what cool gifts the other kids got while we got something stupid, cheap and not worth more than about 25 cents, for the other kids she'd make cookies and do things with, us if she baked for us it was bran muffins. If you can find a way to stop it please do for your kids or they will grow to hate their grandmother, trust me, she's been gone years and we still refer to her as evil.

Sharon - posted on 11/29/2009

15

2

1

I have heard this story before. The Mother in law usually does gives more attention to the daughters children. Less attention the the daughter in laws children.

If it bothers your husband as much as it bothers you. Maybe you should say somethng. Or invite her to spend more time with you. Maybe she doesn't feel very close to you? You should just ask her. She may not realize she is doing it.

Bottom line is don't waste precious time being mad just ask her.

Beinda - posted on 11/29/2009

1

4

0

Yes. Although they make out they do not have favorites, it is always apparent to the Parents on the outside looking in. Does not go to the extreme of Value $ differences more time spent and patience. If you know what I mean...

Joni - posted on 11/29/2009

2

11

0

yeah my mil does the dame thing and now we are the only kid of hers out of the five that have a home and she wants to stay with us when she comes up i don't know what to tell her

Virginia - posted on 11/29/2009

7

5

0

Quoting Bridget:

Does anyone else's mother-in-law...

I'm venting here!!!! Out of curiousity, does anyone else's mother-in-law totally favor some of her grandchildren over the others? My MIL has 4 grandchildren, 2 are my husband (and my) children & 2 are my husband's sisters children. At Christmas, she will spend literally thousands on the other 2 & scrimp & save when it comes to my children. It's outrageous to me how much of a difference she makes. The bad thing is that the presents are all opened together at Christmas & my children can see how much of a difference she makes. It angers me & breaks my heart for my children who's feelings are being hurt.


Yes, I have watched it for 30 years and have just decided that is the way it is.  But the good news is that my middle son who was treated horifically has grown up to have the best forgiving attitude.  It has been such a witness to the mother of the child that got all the stuff.  I know it is hard for you to take the favortism and it isn't right but thank God that your children aren't the ones getting lavished on while other are slighted.  I watched that grandchild grow up to be totally self-absorbed, materialistic and spoiled.  In the long run you are in the best position but I know it is hard.  I pray great peace and contentment in learning and teaching your children that the best things are not things.  God bless.

Jean - posted on 11/29/2009

36

23

1

It is very unfair to your kids! My MIL passed away before any of my kids were born and my children are my parents only grandchildren, but I remember my own grandmother treating me and my sister worse than my cousins and even worse than my brothers (she didn't like girls and told me so one day) and eventually, we stopped visiting except for holidays. If your MIL wants to play favourites, eventually your kids will see the light and your MIL will lose out on two precious grandchildren. But, for now, maybe either you can be the bigger person and tell your kids that it's the thought that counts, or else tell your MIL that you'll visit the next day to open presents because you guys was to spend a quiet family Christmas at home together this year. Hopefully, she'll get the message and begin treating her grandchildren more fairly in future

Claire - posted on 11/29/2009

6

0

0

See we live in Scotland now and less than 2 hours away, but yet she's always too busy to travel up. She wouldn't even give us her new address, so any cards etc go to her friends address. My parents however travel up from Lancashire to see us. Then the cheeky mare moans at me because I don't send her any pictures! She wants to be the proud Nanna without being there!

Claire - posted on 11/29/2009

6

0

0

No hun, this is true of mu mother in law too. Her other 6 grandchildren she has only seen for a short time in their life, but yet when we had our son she was more intrested in my husbands girls (my step-children) who we don't see. She's had the chance to see our son from day one, I even offered to pay for her to fly down when we lived in Norfolk. At the moment my son is now nearly 15 months old and she's see him for a total of 2 and a half hours when he was 2 months old! We moved because of work and we were 2 hours away from her and still no visit. But before we moved here she was always up visiting my sister in law and her two boys. When it was our sons birthday it took her a week after his birthday to send a card and i had to remind her. My nephews, got presents and money on their birthday. I don't understand. My son is the only grandchild she is now alloud to see as her other children don't want anything to do with her, even my husband. I'm just waiting to see what Christmas brings now and that's her last chance!

Stacey - posted on 11/29/2009

15

53

1

oh thank god im not the only one mu mil is the same not that she will say it but u can tell. she never comes to our place but will always go to her daughters house and buy htm everything under the sun but when it comes to my kids they get nothing.

Jaymie - posted on 11/28/2009

14

2

2

Quoting Bridget:

Does anyone else's mother-in-law...

I'm venting here!!!! Out of curiousity, does anyone else's mother-in-law totally favor some of her grandchildren over the others? My MIL has 4 grandchildren, 2 are my husband (and my) children & 2 are my husband's sisters children. At Christmas, she will spend literally thousands on the other 2 & scrimp & save when it comes to my children. It's outrageous to me how much of a difference she makes. The bad thing is that the presents are all opened together at Christmas & my children can see how much of a difference she makes. It angers me & breaks my heart for my children who's feelings are being hurt.



Yeh man that's annoying because it leaves the other child thinking that they aren't as good, or that they have done something wrong. I don't think you are the only one who is feeling this and yeh its fucken annoying. The only thing I can suggest is that you tell her how you feel (which we all know probably wont go too well) and hope for a change. Good luck

User - posted on 11/28/2009

1

0

0

me and my sister are both single mothers and in very diferent situations i am a widow and her and bo.. broke up... my mom favors her bc shes the youngest and im more inependant so her child gets more attention than mine on my side. every situatuon is diferent it depends on how you both treat your cildren and how you teach them, if they know your special to you who else matters? im not trying to be rude but thats how i see it. i hope it helps...as far s chistmas say santa comes there bc they dont get alot at home.

Tanisha - posted on 11/28/2009

1

2

0

I went through this 11 years ago. I just told her if she couldn't treat all of the kids equally, don't treat my kids at all.

Ginny - posted on 11/28/2009

2

9

0

Thats My mother in law but it is my kids that gets the better gifts. It makes the other Aunts and Uncles hate my Kids. its not right

Lindsay - posted on 11/28/2009

45

28

0

I so understand,

My ex mother -n-law was like that , first off all she only seen my kids on holidays and birthdays and she lived like 10 min away but would see her daughters kids all the time who lived like 20 min away, now since me and ex split 5 years ago almost she hasnt tryed to see them once and even hangs the phone up on me and my daughter when we try to call, she hasnt seen my 5 year old since before her 1st b-day, i send her new pics all the time and she has blocked me from sending pics through her e-mail, my kids were always the outcast of the family because they simply didnt like me, Thank god since i have a new man his mother is GREAT and treats my other kids just as her own and everything is fair.

Janet - posted on 11/28/2009

2

0

0

Quoting Bridget:

Does anyone else's mother-in-law...

I'm venting here!!!! Out of curiousity, does anyone else's mother-in-law totally favor some of her grandchildren over the others? My MIL has 4 grandchildren, 2 are my husband (and my) children & 2 are my husband's sisters children. At Christmas, she will spend literally thousands on the other 2 & scrimp & save when it comes to my children. It's outrageous to me how much of a difference she makes. The bad thing is that the presents are all opened together at Christmas & my children can see how much of a difference she makes. It angers me & breaks my heart for my children who's feelings are being hurt.


 

Michelle - posted on 11/28/2009

1

8

0

I have the same problem, but it's not just at Christmas time...it's all year. Even my son who is 10 is realizing he is the favored one. She constantly buys him stuff and if he gets a good report card, he will get a video game. At Christmas she will spend more on him than my twins combined. Besides that she makes the twins share a DVD and buys him Wii games. My son even tells me to tell her not to get him anything. It makes me very upset and I tell my husband to talk to her about it, but he doesn't see the problem.

Ellen - posted on 11/28/2009

14

23

0

I can not believe there is a grandma out there that favors one grandchild over the other. I am a grandma of 3 and treat them all the same. My daughter owns two and my son owns one. I have a special spot for each of my grandchildren but do not favor one over the other. Birthdays I spend the same $ on each and this includes the parents also...I spend the same on them.Xmas time I give myself a budget devide it between all three and off I go. As a matter of fact they even get the same amount of gifts. If one gift is a little more expensive and I spent my quota I alotted I will buy maybe socks or mitts just so they open the same amount. Children are special little creatures we create and I think it is awful there is someone specially a grandma out there that would do that to them. My favorite saying is "if I knew grandchildren were so great I would never would of had children", LOL. Your best bet is grandma looses the privalage of all grandchildren together. Maybe hubby needs to talk to his mom. Enjoy your children.

Valerie - posted on 11/28/2009

5

11

0

my suggestion would be simply spend at home with your family...try to instill that christmas is not about how much gifts they get but give to others that do not have much..maybe do a family volunteer or find a family that needs gift and be secret santa to the family..i feel your pain but stir in a different direction and your family will grow...

Shekera - posted on 11/28/2009

1

0

0

most mil's seem to be more overbearing towards the offsprings of their daughter's compared to those of their son's!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! if their daughter gave birth to that child all is good and that shouldn't be , all grandkids deserve the same attention.

Shawn - posted on 11/28/2009

26

13

0

I wouldn't put my kids through that again - you and your husband know, the kids know...I wouldn't accept gifts from her and I wouldn't spend the holidays with her. Have you or your husband let her know that you are on to her nonsense? She is making your kids feel "less than" or not worthy of her love. To hell with the reason why. Good luck.

Beverly - posted on 11/28/2009

1

6

0

My MIL used to do the same with my 2 girls, which were both my husbands and mine, by the way. She would do it because the oldest is the first grandchild, and it was very obvious that she was favored. So we would buy extra gifts for the youngest so she wouldn't feel less important and label it from Santa. Finally, my husband put his foot down and had a firm talk with her and she started buying the same for each. Is your husband's sister a single mom or maybe not as well off as you and your husband? Maybe she does it for that reason, either way, maybe your husband needs to have a talk with her and let her know how she is making her other grandchildren feel. Or maybe you and your husband can do what we did, buy extra and label them from santa so they have the same to open.

Lori - posted on 11/28/2009

1

5

0

when my girls were little my mil gave the newest baby in the family a garbage bag full of presents right in front of them. and nothing for my girls. try listeneng to your kids ask how come, doesnt grandma like us. my girls were 7& 9. we never forgave her for that. we never even went to her funeral.

Marty - posted on 11/28/2009

1

21

0

mmmmmm.....I'm a mother in law and it seems to me that a lot of responses are focussing on comparisons of money being spent as a representation of the MIL's love/care/affection/attention/duty? Kids, in my experience, only know when they have been disadvantaged at christmases and birthdays when adulta have told them or discussed it openly in front of them. I guess I'm fortunate to have sons and daughters and in laws who teach the principle of gratitude regardless how much grandma has to spend from one year to the next.....there are other ways of giving/receiving and sharing and these need to be discussed if problems like the ones being voiced are encountered....it's not all about money!

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms