October 17, 2007,
B.R. asks from San Antonio, TX on October 11, 2007
I Dont Get Along with My Mother in Law
Every since my son was born ( July 06) my mother in law and I have not gotton along. We pretend to and it does not work. It started when I was giving birth and she wanted her whole family to be in the labor room. I was not ok with that. So ever since then she has been nothing but rude to me and my family. Then sortly after the birht we moved in with my parents while we where building a home. She would not vist but yell at my husband for never seeing the baby. When we would vist she would be rude to me ignor me. Even ignor my wishes for my baby when she would be with him. My son is now over a year old and we still have this tension and cant carry on a converstation, or feel natural around eachother. My husband is on the last straw with this issue. He is in th middle of this. But when I do try to talk to her or be nice she is so rude. I even give her very nice gifts or celberations and she said something ugly or rude. She is very disrecptful at times and when she is I just leave. Even if we are only there for 10 min I tell him that we have to go home. I dont know what to do anymore.
J.A. answers from San Antonio on October 12, 2007
B. I am so sorry for your pain. My own mother left the hospital before my son was born cause she didnt get her way in the delivery room. That was your moment. No one elses. Its a very private moment. She really needs to get over it. She shouldnt be holding a grudge about it. Its time your hubby steps up to the plate and puts a stop to this bitterness. He needs to tell his mom that it was your and his decision on who was in the delivery room. It was your and your hubbys private momemt. The celebration of a child being born for the family comes afterwards. Not in the delivery room with your legs propped up in stirups. So come on hubby! Step Up! Tell mom to chill out already. Holding a grudge is not going to change what happened. Move on. Be a women mom.
D.L. answers from Austin on October 13, 2007
B. this is an unfortunate situation. I think you need to sit down and talk to her and say, I know there has been tension with us since Ethans birth. I need to know why you are not treating me the same as you did prior to having him. Just get it out in the open that you are aware of the tension. Get her attention and make it known that your husband is very unhappy with this situation. So she knows it is not just you seeing it. Tell her this needs to end, and explain your wishes were nothing against her many people dont want a whole sloo of people in the delivery room. (Only me and my fiance were in the delivery room). Explain that it is hard to concentrate on the surroundings when there are lots of people talking it can get confusing. I know we just wanted a relaxed calm quite environment. I wish you the best of luck. Let us know how this unravels.
M.V. answers from College Station on October 13, 2007
Mothers in law are a challenge sometimes.
First remember that though she is your husband's mother, she is not your son's mother.
If she cannot be respectful to you infront of your son, do not go to her home. Your husband can take him for a visit, but do not let her be rude to you infront of your child, because he will see that and think it is ok to treat mommy that way.
What do you mean she does not respect your wishes when she is with your son? Is she offering small treats, this is granma's joy, to treat or spoil their grandchildren.
IF she is offering him unhealthy foods that ruin his appetite for a meal or you are concerned about his health, then ask her again or visit after meals.
Stop giving her gifts, it was your labor and delivery, you in a condition that many would agree was not suitable for visitors, no need to apologize.
She has the problem, let her get over it. IF you continue to try to appease her, you will just add fuel to the flames.
Know that your husband loves her and you and that having the two of you disputing is uncomfortable for him, but you do not have to beg for her approval.
S.B. answers from San Antonio on October 17, 2007
I understand your fustrations with your mother-n-law. I get along with mine for everyone's sake, although her know-it-all attitude drives me bananas! Anyway...this is how I believe you should handle this. Without your kids or husband or anyone else around sit down with her and openly discuss your feelings about what is going on. I did that and it really seemed to help ALOT! I just explained how I was feeling and she did the same and it helped.
Even if it doesn't at least YOU made the effort to make things better. In your husband's eyes he will see that you are trying to make things better. Is it possible that you can be over-reacting to her inappropriate communications? Maybe she doesn't mean to be coming across rude, maybe she doesn't realize what she is doing??
I hope you can get this settled for your kids sake and yours.
M.R. answers from McAllen on October 15, 2007
Just a Thought... talk to her with your husband in the same room and let her know that you were raised a certain way and nothing will change that... apologize for not letting her bring the whole family in the delivery room, but that in your family its personal.... let her know that it wasn't to make her mad or to disrespect her... that's just the way you were raised and nothing it going to change that... remind her that you are married to her son and she has a grandson... make it ALL about her... sometimes m-i-l feel left out, because her son will not be there anymore... maybe let your husband go visit her alone, and take the baby... no its not to leave you out or anything... just to try to make her understand that YOU are a part of him now and you would like for all of your family to be a part of eachother... I hope this makes sense and it helps
T.S. answers from Longview on October 13, 2007
While many people have been in your shoes, few seem to have worked it amicably.
My suggestion is to
1. Sit down and talk with hubby about it. First ask him what he thinks about the situation and how he feels. Then ask him if he has any suggestions on how to mend things. Hear him out first. He is the one caught in the middle.
2. Then you can make a list of his suggestions.
3. Air your side of it in as unemotional (no crying or yelling) way as possible. Men really like to hear the logical side of things and talk calmly.
4. Make your suggestions on how to solve the problem and add those to the list.
5. Go through the list together and decide in order of what to try first. Try to come up with at least 3 things you can do together to work on this problem.
6. Implement the plan.
[ My suggestions are- wife talks to MIL and asks her what specifically the mil finds offensive about the wife, her wifely duties, and her mothering duties. Have pen and paper ready where she can see it. ;-) . Then see if you can work on one thing and if she is willing to talk and work on things on her end.
If that does not work, then I suggest the hubby talk to his mother and say the same things. But in the process he needs to make it clear to his mom that he married you and not your clone. He needs to make it clear that he does not need her approval for his families way of doing things.]
Finally when MIl is in your home, your house rules apply no matter what. Kids may stay up to visit but they still brush their teeth, don't drink soda, or whatever you rules you have in place.
When in her house, her rules apply except regarding the safety and health of your child. Compromise and let little things roll off your back.
For instance my MIL would feed the kids left over fried chicken for lunch and although dd did not like it, I told her to eat what was served. But I did reheat it for them and she sneered at that, but I told her I personally don't like cold chicken and do not mind heating it for them. I did not make an issue of it and she did not either, although she did make her feelings known. I don't care if she does that. You have to have tough skin. ;-) She is not hitting on my parenting skills, just saying I am spoiling my kids a bit much, which is just fine if she wants to think that. LOL
G.B. answers from San Antonio on October 13, 2007
I know what you are going threw. I also have a mother-inlaw who I don't get along with and also would ignore my wishes when it came to treatment of my son. The only thing I could tell you is to either be direct w/her and tell her that it really bothers you at how rude she can and you don't want the tension between you and her. Don't be rude or confrontational when you speak to her because she will (assuming)take it defensively. Make sure that when you don't like something she is doing to or with your son that you let her know because we are that parents of our children and we are here to take care of and raise them the way we see fit not the way our inlaws do.
F.G. answers from Austin on October 13, 2007
I understand exactly how you feel. My mother in law was hard to get along with for a long time. But your husband must understand that he is NOT in the middle of this, you are. It does not matter what his mother does or says. You are his wife. You are the mother of his child. When you married eachother you left your families and became as one. And so it must be with this issue. When his mother does something rude to you, she is disrespecting him as well. I am sure he has had enough, but it is up to him to say something to her. It is not your place. This is his mother.
The only thing you can do is remain sweet to her, and try to be respectful. Remember, you are teaching your child how to respect his elders and so you must do this by example. You should never speak a wrong word about her around your son and you must show him how to be kind even to those that hurt him.
Your husband must stand up for you with his mother. You are his wife. You are the one he must put on a pedestal. If his mother is rude to you and you are trying to be sweet to her, then you are not in the wrong. I hope that your husband can understand his place in this and not put you in the middle of his family's drama. If he leaves this to you then it will only put resentment in your marriage and drive a wedge between the two of you. I wish you the best of luck and blessings. I hope that his mother can understand how much better it would be if she would just let it go.
M.M. answers from San Antonio on October 12, 2007
WOW do I totally feel your pain! But my prob w/the in-laws started when they retired and went from half a country away to the next neighbor hood over. I have to say that our pastor helped us alot. My husband really had to man up to the situation. Unfortunately they are in the middle because they've allowed it to get that far. It should never be allowed for anyone (especially mommy-dearest) to go against your wishes w/your child or disrespect you. My husband had to tell her that although he would love to have her in our life if she couldn't tolerate our rules (especially mine), and show me respect then she wouldn't be a part of our life. It was hard for him but It had gotten so bad that I had actually told him to choose between her and I. Then our pastor saved us. I do not go around my inlaws alone because she can twist what I say, Instead my husband always has to be there. If she says/does something I don't like my husband has to address it and if she doesnt' like it then he respectfully says he wishes she could be a part of our lives but she has to respct us and follow our wishes w/our son and we leave. It's gotten alot better. The other day she told my son to shutup and I told her not to talk to my son that way and she apologized and said I was right and it wouldn't happen again. I was upset w/my husband for not handling it but he said he didn't hear it. It takes time and work but your husband really has to be in on it. He's the only one she'll listen too.
S.S. answers from Wichita Falls on October 13, 2007
I'd talk to my husband if I were you, and see if he can come up with a solution... maybe he could explain to his mom that you are both his wife and the mother of her grandchild, and that her behavior is putting a strain on HIS marriage and HER relationship with her grandchild?
Out of curiosity, is your husband her only son?
ETA - I agree with everyone else, too.. don't let her be rude to you, but for now - maybe set the boundary there. Maybe, too, you could invite her on a play date for Ethan... let her know that, even though she's not your mom, she's still Ethan's grandma to you.
AND RE: not doing "what you want" with regards to your son, I second the fact that candy and goodies are what grandmas do - but if we're talking smoking, excessive drinking, cursing, or drugs - my son just wouldn't go over there.
AND RE visiting: Were I you, I'd just take Ethan and leave - your husband is a big boy who should be able to stay as long as he likes with his mom, you're a mom who shouldn't feel forced to stay where you or your child are treated unjustly.
FTR - I love my MIL... almost always have, likely always will - but we had some uncomfortable patches at the beginning.
C. answers from Longview on October 12, 2007
I am so sorry your baby's first year has been underlined with all of this nastiness. I assume that you have already done what I am about to suggest, so now it's time that your husband begin stepping in & taking care of this for you. It is his role, in your household to protect & defend you. Even if it is from his own mother. He should lovingly tell his mother that he knows that she is hurt over the whole labor room issue, but that it is childish of her to not move on. That he wants her to do whatever it takes to help herself change her outlook on all of it. He could say that she should consider that not all people weren't raised like she was. That you personally felt most comfortable in a more private setting, and that she shouldn't take it so personally. That she should put herself in your shoes. The way you were raised, etc. That it was your half-naked body there in that room, and your pain, and your moment. And that she should create a way to help herself feel more understanding & more compassionate toward you about it. That you didn't intend to hurt anyone by wanting more privacy. And he should let her know that she is putting him in a terrible position by constantly acting ugly toward you, and that her behavior has cast a nasty shadow over his family experience for the entire first year of his son's life by keeping everything stirred up like this. That if she cannot show more respect & common courtesy to his wife, then he plans to stop visiting. Because it is hurtful to him to see his wife treated this way. By anyone. Not just by her. Your family wants to have peaceful holidays. Not holiday visits that are full of bitterness and tension. And he intends to do whatever it takes to help his little family unit have peaceful holidays this year, and that if she doesn't figure out a way to change her perspective and behave with more kindness, then she will have to spend the holidays without him so that he & his wife can have more pleasant holidays. You guys should also read the "Boundaries" books by authors Cloud & Townsend. They are really good books that help you find the right words to say in sticky situations like this.
I'll pray for you all.
J.N. answers from Corpus Christi on October 14, 2007
Well.. in my experience with my mother in law.. who always expects us to travel 1800 miles to see her.. when it's definitely easier for her to travel to see us.. if she doesn't want to make the effort then she will miss out.
You need to put your foot down!! Tell her that you are tired of her childish attitude and will not tolerate it any longer. Hopefully, your husband will back you up. Even if he doesn't do NOT allow her to make you feel uncomfortable.. and stop rewarding her bad behavior with gifts and pleasantries. Remind her that her grandchild will only be little once and she needs to grow up and be a respectful grandmother - if she thinks that her grandchild isn't picking up on the tension then she's wrong. It won't help their relationship either.
R.C. answers from McAllen on October 15, 2007
I suggest that you hire a family counselor, sit down the three of you and handle this matter. This cannot go on for years and years, she likes it or not you are part of her family. You NEED to take care of this ASAP. Things will get worse and worse. A one time visit will not hurt and you will not regret it. Maybe shes not mad at you, you never know. You and your mother in law are gonna have to meet half way, if she doesn't like you, oh well, she has to bottle it up, for sake of your child. You do not want your child to see conflicts between you two, or do you? Do it for your child sweetie. it will be worth it.
L.F. answers from Austin on October 13, 2007
I hear ya, girl! I don't know what to say is that you and your hubby have to keep in the front of your mind that this woman has some serious issues with HERS! Sounds like my MIL who is a control freak and has to be in everything we did. SHe tolderated my dating and marrying her son - but once I has my first boy it was like she saw me as taking them away from her just by being there. Sometimes mothers can't seem to accept their little boys will find a 'replacement' for them, and once a child comes along they tend to freak that they are no longer 'part' of his life and more, being cut out of because of you and your bond with your child and your husband. She suddenly realizes she is not anyone's MOMMY here and can't handle the adjustment. They seem to think that everyone else is nuts and they actually do have control over these new lives.
L.S. answers from Odessa on October 14, 2007
It is so hard not being able to get along with inlaws. I like to jokingly call my inlaws "the outlaws". My own mother in law is wonderful, but my sister in laws are a very different set of people. Just remember that no matter what, the only person's behavior that you can change is your own. That seems very unfair, but you are not going to make your mother in law any different, even with your kind gestures. If I were you, I would try to stop paying attention to her as much as possible, and try to let your husband and child visit her without you. Just be honest and tell your husband that you don't feel comfortable with her, and that you are going to shop or do something else while they visit. You know that she has raised children, and is not going to do anything to harm her grandchild, so just find something else to do, and take some valuable mommy time off while they visit.
Have a Great Day!
L.C. answers from Killeen on October 13, 2007
My husband and mother don't get along, so don't feel like you're alone. The only thing I can say is to continue living your own life and leave it at that. You're not responsible for your MIL's emotions and responses. I know it's hard on your husband, because I'm in the middle as well, but he married you, not his mother. Let her continue to be a small person and you continue to be a loving mother, daughter and wife. Kill her with kindness. It's hard to be the better person, but when you have no other options, that's all you can do, unless you want to have it out with her and let her know how you feel about what she's doing. Both can be pretty effective if you don't let your anger get in the way of what you're trying to say. Don't get me wrong, it's really hard, but all you can do is try. Good luck with it all and remember, only you can control your own thoughts and emotions. Many blessings...