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Inlaws and husband! Help!

Amber - posted on 12/10/2009 ( 20 moms have responded )




I'm not sure were to begin! I feel like my husband thinks his parents are better than mine; because they have more money than mine. My husband and I fight about our parents all the time. This worse time of year is the holidays. I have got to were I hate the holidays. I feel like it is my job to make everyone happy; went all I want to do is spend time with my 4 and 2 year old. One year I told Stephen (husband) that I was going to make out a calendar for the holidays and would alternate whose house we were going to go to on which day. It was like this; Thanksgiving Day=my parents; X-mas=his parents, and the next year it would be the other way around. The reason I wanted to do it that way is, because it is so much trouble having two places to go on one day. I thought it was a good idea, but his mom totally flipped out and started crying when he told her. My parents had no problem with it. They said they had to problem with it, because they understood. They went through the same thing. His family lives all over the U.S., and the only family he has in here is his mom, dad, grandmother (lives with his parents), sister and brother. So they don't have to deal with going to two places in one day. Not to start a fight, but his mother also believes that X-mas is Jesus birthday and I taught it wasn't; so she gets mad when other people don't believe the same way she does. I feel like X-mas should be spent with my boys and not try to make everyone happy. I get so stressed during the holidays I don't enjoy them anymore. If anyone has any advice on what I should do it would be appreciated.


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Kayla - posted on 12/11/2011




Put your foot down. It's putting way to much stress on you and your husband. You should just put your foot down though tell her that if she insists on throwing a fit about it then she should plan the holidays for a different day. Maybe do every holiday a week later, so it's less stress. Thats the way me and my husband are if there is more than one family having a holiday on the same day, we decide which one to go to without the help of the rest of the family. Just me and him and then the family that has holidays on a different day every year we go to those.

Iysha - posted on 12/21/2010




I can tell you that you are not alone in hating the holidays. We had a full out fight last year during the mom, me and my fiance. It was our daughter's first xmas and my fiance never really saw his mom or his dad and we decided thanksgiving that we would go over to his mom's place since her and his two sisters all have their birthdays thanksgiving week. We were there for the whole week. Christmas comes around and he throws a fit because xmas eve I was wanting to spend with my family since my mom has a big party and then spen xmas day to past new years with his mom. She lives 3+ hours away so I figured it would make our drive worth while. Apparently it was a bad idea but it still happened. This year, we had thanksgiving on our own since we were across the country but this year, we arent going to be able to visit his mom since we dont have relyable transportation and My fiance mad it seem as if it was up to me if I could find a way to get there...nice. I know that his grandma and grandpa just move into the area and we are invited for xmas eve so hopefully he wont be too bummed out...he doesnt get to see his dad's side of the family much and well, i like them more, so hopefully we will have a good time. My side of the family is celebrating on xmas day so that we can see his dad's family.

The holidays are tricky and it sucks....I cant wait until we own a big house so we can just invite everyone for the holidays and they can come to us..everyone from both sides.

MaryBeth - posted on 12/21/2010




I totally understand where your coming from. We have three sets of grandparents to please and it always seems like my boys come last. We have tried everything and with us it just seemed like we told them how it was and if they didn't like it they lost out on time with their grandkids. Luckily my husband was supportive. Good luck

Jenny - posted on 12/21/2010




We ran into the same problems but luckily his family tries to work with mine. For Thanksgiving we go see his family and the Saturday after we go see mine and for Christmas Eve we see his and mine Christmas day. That way everyone is happy.

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I don't like the holidays with my husband's family. They eat and talk and on Christmas open presents. They literally hand out the presents and have an opening frenzy. It's hard to even thank the person you got the gift from. Not to mention take pictures. The entire Christmas event lasts maybe 4 hours.

Where as with my family it is a full day event. We cook together, make jokes, my brother shows off his latest gadget, we play games, there are presents but its smoother.

I would just do the swap every year and let your MIL be mad about it. Whether its Jesus' Birthday or just a time to give and spend time with family it should be done with those you love. That's what's important. If she can't see that than I guess she isn't listening very well at church.

Nikkole - posted on 12/21/2010




Yea im pretty lucky my husbands family usually has there xmas a week after the next weekend! And his mom does not really celebrate xmas and give presents or put up a tree or anything! But i would just do what your doing or celebrate one christams one one day then the next the other day or next weekend it is so much easier than running everywhere in one day!

Andrea - posted on 12/21/2010




I understand what you're going through, in-laws can be a real pain sometimes...Just do what you wish like doing, but always be sure to do it for yourself and your kids, and not to please your husband or his family. Happy Holidays.

Amanda - posted on 12/21/2010




I feel so bad for you! I love Christmas and I know this time of year gets super stressful for a lot of people but the thing to remember here is that you have your boys to be thankful for. If you really can't stand the way his mother is which I don't blame you she sounds like a royal pain in the butt!! Tell your husband if she doesn't want to compromise neither do you! It's about spending time with family! If she can't accept that you guys need to alternate to please everyone than you guys don't need to be in her company. You shouldn't be stressing about pleasing her every year. If she was that concerned she'd meet you guys halfway with things, like accepting the way you feel. She sounds really selfish...if I were you I'd put my foot down to my husband and say if your mom can't accept the arrangment made than we won't be visiting her at all. It's time she grows up and realizes that life isn't all about her...Merry Christmas to you and hope all works out!

Tamara - posted on 12/21/2010




I kinda had the same problem with my family as well, but that's kinda what we do. My mom lives in a different state than us and his are just down the road. We decided to do what you thought of, but when we can we at least swing by for a few hours before heading out. My mom this year actually had her christmas dinner a week before and we're going to spend the eve of eve with my dad in the morning and his mom in the evening. He also has a daughter from a previous marriage and her mommy is getting her on christmas eve, and my husband had to work christmas this year so in the evening is when we're going to have our time. If you want to spend christmas with just you're kids and hubby perhaps you should start your own thing at home instead of traveling. I learned a while back that you're not going to make everything happy. Someone is going to get unhappy unless you spend all the time with them always. I would try talking to your husband again and then maybe talk to your in-law again about it. I believe myself that it's the celebration of Jesus, but it's about family nowadays and all the details that I won't go into with it. You and your husband need to be a team. And in seperate families (and even divorced parents) you may just have to alternate years. You could even tell your inlaw that you're gonna start doing your own family thing at home. Do whatever feels right and what you think is best. All we can do is give advice. But I'd try your plan again. Tell her about how you feel when you, maybe if you can't spend as much time with your family because you're afraid that it's going to hurt her feelings, and let her know that it's your guys of way of trying to be fair and they'll get to see you one holiday and you spend time with them the whole day and next year it'll be reversed. Either way you and your hub need to be a team on this.

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we're going through the same thing... this year we're spending xmas eve at my husbands parents, xmas day at our house and boxing day at my parents. i dont really like christmas, even less since i started dating my husband. his mom makes it all about the presents and says all the time how guilty she feels when she doesnt spend hundreds of dollars on each person. it drives me insane. she seriously spent at least 500 bucks this year on each of her grandkids (2 are mine, 1 is my sil's). and most of the stuff are stupid toys that i dont have room for. she bought my son (2 months) a little people airplane/boat set thats 18 months+ like he's 2 months hes not going to play with it... anyway, i just found out that my husband told his mom that she could come visit on xmas day, because she was upset (literally crying and pouting) that we werent going to be there on christmas day. i wanted the day to just be my family. ugh, its frustrating, but its only 1 day so i guess im just going to have to suck it up lol

Stifler's - posted on 12/21/2010




I totally DON'T visit family at Christmas. If we do it's only because Damian has 10 days off every year.

Kathryn - posted on 12/21/2010




I know this is easy to say but you should do what you want to do. You will be happier, your children will grow up to respect for being that person. If your in-laws are that non-understanding then theyre not the type of people you want to be spending the holiday season with. I have the same issues as you. My parents are fine with whatever I decide to do, my mother never saw her parents at christmas but my b/f mum is very selfish and would have us live with her if she could. Do what you want to do.....after all your in-laws always have.....good luck & happy christmas x

Jody-Maree - posted on 12/20/2010




I have similiar issue about my husband thinking his family are better than mine. I bothered me alot to start with, but I started saying (and I believe this of everyone): 'That's who they are and you can't like everyone." I would also say things like 'you grew up with your family and you're used to them - same for me and my family. I don't expect that you know my family like I do and you should remember that with your family.'

I'm seeing that you have justified issues with your MIL. In that she is not respecting the opinions, beleifs and wishes, etc of others - including yourself. What would happen if you said to her straight, when a conversation arrises about say 'Jesus and christmas' - "you have your beleifs, I have mine. I do not want to change yours and this is what I believe."

Can you say it's just too much for your young children to cope with - doing big family occasions twice in one day? Could you say you aren't coping well with young children and two big family events in one day? or maybe use any scape goat?

Sometimes families have christmas day the next day or the previous day make things work better for all. Christmas eve would be a very special day for your MIL - remind her about her beliefs around Jesus and the eve also being a very special day.

Heather - posted on 12/11/2009




I can totally understand how you feel. My suggestion would be maybe you could do both families over the holidays but do it this way: day before thanksgiving be at his parents, thanksgiving day at your parents. xmas eve your parents, xmas day his parents? i dont know. I know my mom understands that its hard to be at 2 palces in one day too and always does holiday meals the weekend before the holiday so we dont have to be everywhere in one day! my fiance's mom and dad are divirced, so we would have 3 houses to be at in one day if my mom and dad were to do holiday dinners and get togethers the day of the holiday. hope this helped

Shelby - posted on 12/11/2009




this sounds like something that will only be worked out by loving communication between your husband and yourself. you have to decide what is best for your immediate family (not best for your parents or his parents or anyone else). that being said, your MIL will be family for the rest of your life, so better not to tick her off already as a newlywed. whatever you decide to do, having the "right" answer for this question is irrelevent. it's about finding what works for you, your husband, and both families. i've heard of families beginning to have their own xmases shortly after having kids to avoid this kind of stress; we've been married 5 years and now have 2 kids, and we still travel to both sides of the family for xmas (alternating years). but we're considering stopping that next year and being home as our own family on xmas. there comes a time when each family JUST does their own xmas, but it's different for everyone. sounds like you need to get ont eh same page with your husband; not by fighting and "proving" your points, but by truly seeking to understand each other's needs. he loves his family too; it's not just about them being "better" than yours, although men sometimes can't come up with the words to express themselves. just a thought.

Gladys - posted on 12/11/2009




hi amber,holidays r d only time 1 have to relax after spending a whole year running around.u need to talk to your husband and really make him understand how you feel.then its his place to make his family know that all of this getting to you. if you are stressed then it will affect your relationship with your husband and holidays are the worse times to be at odds in a relationship.make him understand that it time you both become assertive about the issue.try to let him know that you care 4 his family but cant handle the competition. between your family and his.since they cant get along and you are in the middle there should be a compromise for your sake and the kids sake. its wrong for children to be subjected to rancor between people they are both adults,yes be respectful to your parents but when you have to draw the line please do.i hope you find a solution to your problem.have a happy holiday

Amber - posted on 12/11/2009




Thank you all for your help. I am the one doing all the giving and I hate it. My mom and dad understand, but my husbands family doesn't understand. I hope we can sit down and talk about it, but in the past that has not gone so well, but now after 5 years of putting up with it I'm tired of it. As for having it at my house with both sides that wouldn't go so well. For one my house is not big enough for both sides, ad there is always competition for the kids attention when both sides are together. I wish they would all grow up. I'm 25 and act more like an adult then they do. lol!

Ashley - posted on 12/10/2009




I am pretty lucky that my b/f family is on teh east coast and don't expect us to come there at all! My family is also very flexible... but my b/f father lives in the same city and has voiced his displeasure at us leaving the city to go to my parents even though this Christmas is huge since my sister and her kids from floirida are coming as well! We live in Canada btw :) I don't think that you should have to please everyone at the holidays... I am sure if I was as stressed as you are I would lock the doors and celebrate alone with my family! :)

Constance - posted on 12/10/2009




I refuse to try to be two places at once for the holidays because both sides (and my husband and I) want to be there all night. So I make them each choose different days based on when my husband and I can both be there. My in-laws get Christmas Eve, and my parents get whatever day my dad's off. If they want to celebrate a holiday on a day when I can't be there, I don't go and they just have to understand.

Holidays are about being happy with loved ones. If it doesn't make you happy, something's got to give. And it sounds like you're the only one giving. You need to stand up and ask that things be done for you for once.

Amy - posted on 12/10/2009




I understand how hard it is, lucky we haven't had to deal with it at all. My parents have officially decided that we have our thanksgiving in the summer, that way every thanksgiving we can spend with my husbands family. We also alternate for Christmas as well, there really isn't any other way around it with out being too stressed out.

Also, I remember my parents fighting about the in-laws all the time. My mom's side of the family wasn't as educated as my fathers side, my mom's side is very traditional in there roles, and my fathers side is very open to everything. As a child it was hard to hear your parents fight about there parents, and even harder when going to my grandmas on my mom's side and feel the tension between my dad and grandma. To this day I still hear complaining from my grandmas about how we spent more time with the other side, etc. What we've been doing is try to get both sides of the family on a schedule, so all the siblings are there on the same day we decide on.

As a child that grew up with parents/grandparents in a similar situation I REALLY hope that you can find a way to get along with your in-laws (which I understand can be impossible!).

Do you know why your mother in law is so upset? If she's the one who's so upset about the situation maybe you, your husband and husbands parents can sit down and see if you can find something that works for all of you. Find a way to make the holidays special for each side of the family. I know it may be hard, but you really need to sit down and try to come to an arrangement that works for both sides.

I don't know how your sides get along, but you could always try having a Christmas at your place with both sides of the family?

Other than talking to them I can't really think of other options. I hope you two can find a way to get along with both in-laws!

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