Family Matters
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For your Viewing Pleasure - Lurker with a Monster - In- Law


Re: For your Viewing Pleasure - Lurker with a Monster - In- Law

  • You sound like an absolute b**ch. 
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  • I think you need to chill a little bit. My ILs sign cards to just me & to H and me 'Mom & Dad'. I call them by their first names. They will never be mom & dad to me because I have my own parents.

    It is not a hill to die on.

  • I'm too tired from reading the OP to even try to do more than skim your 37 page response.

    Your MIL is nuts.  You are even more nuts.

    Why can't you guys just speak to one another like adults? Life is way too short for getting caught up in all this stupid crap.

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  • I really hope you didn't send that letter, because PPs are right that while you have valid points it comes off really really biitchy. You need to try and tune her out and ignore her. 
  • imageGreco1014:

    This whole things is giving me a headache...but here are a few thoughts:

    1) Based only on the letter you posted, your MIL sounds long winded, picky, and traditional, but not malicious.

    2) YOur letter comes across as way more rude and mean spirited than hers does. I would not send it. In fact, don't send a letter at all. If you want to respond, call her up so that you can talk like adults.

    3) Frankly, I do think it would be in your best interest to lighten up a bit. So what if she signs a card "Mom and Dad." I don't feel comfortable calling my IL's mom and dad, and they sign every card "Mom and Dad [last name]" What difference does it make? And if your IL's are sending a card to both of you, what are they supposed to do? Sign it twice, two different ways? SIgn it by their first names, even though it's addressed to their own son? Lighten up on this one, call them whatever you want, and let them address cards as they see fit.

    4) If your IL's want to send a letter just to their son, they should be allowed to do so, even if said letter is not a birthday card. If you and your husband want to read each other's mail, that's fine--but you can't demand that both your names be on all mail. That's just unreasonable.  

    5) You're sending out mixed signals here. You want your IL's to treat you more like one of the family, but you want to make sure they know that they are not your real mom and dad? It sounds like you are sabotaging your own cause here. 

     All of this.  I'd also add you are a bit hypocritical.  You told her not to go through your H if she has a problem with you, but you told H to tell his parents that you don't want to call them Mom and Dad.  She sounds a little crazy and controlling but you are being exactly the same if you respond to her in this way.  The only way to be better than her AND resolve your issues is to pick up the phone so tones are not misunderstood and calmly explain yourself.  Also, just address her letter, all the other stuff you need to get over if you didn't handle it before.  You say you're 25 years old and need to be treated like an adult but if you bring up past grudges you sound like a high schooler and they will treat you as such.  I really don't get why you are so uptight about the mom and dad thing.  You don't have to call them that.  They just see it as a term of endearment.  And, if she didn't like you, she wouldn't tell other people you are her daughter.  She clearly must be proud of you or she wouldn't use such an endearing label.  I'm not saying she's not at all in the wrong here but you are making your life worse by dragging this on.  You need to stand up for yourself but only when it is absolutely necessary (which from these letters the only thing I'd put my foot down on is if they pry into your health and sexual business, everythign else was trivial).  Otherwise you need to loosen up on this a lot or you'll end up with an estranged MIL (surely to the detriment of your H) or a divorce. 

    My grandma has been the MIL from hell to my mom and my aunt so I can see your side of things for sure.  But, also now that I have my parents and aunt and uncles 30+ years of marriage as wisdom, they both have been near divorces over these issues and now neither my dad or my uncle have a relationship with their mom.  They chose their wives but if I told you they don't have ulcers and extreme amounts of stress and guilt over it, it would be a lie.  For the sake of your H find some middle ground with her.

  • 1. I've never called my IL's by Mom and Dad, but they've never asked me to. I'm not comfortable doing that, but none of them seem to care. My advice on this is to just continue referring to them in the manner you prefer, and let them do the same. If you're ever with her and she introduces you as her daughter, you can say "Yes, I'm married to her son" or something like that if you feel you need to clarify.

    2. The whole bit she went on about with the greeting cards, I'm not completely following. I agree she's BSC on being that detailed in her habits on that, and I agree with you that you don't need to adopt any of her personal habits/customs/etc. Just leave it alone. If she asks you in person why you didn't send a greeting card to your third uncle twice removed, or two whoever, just tell her you don't send cards to everyone, or you phone in person, or just that it's not her problem to worry about and leave it at that. Repeat the same answer as needed.

    3. Has she asked you and your husband such personal questions about finances, sex life, etc.? If she has or does, I would just tell her at that moment she asks or comments, that the topic is off-limits for discussion. Keep repeating the same statement over and over if she presses, and DO NOT give in. Your husband needs to do the same.

    4. She does need to understand that you are your own person, and you and your DH are your own family now, and you will not be told how to live your lives. That last bit of her expecting you do to things their way, that would never fly with DH and I. DH and I make our own decisions, we don't do everything exactly as our families probably wish, and we don't care. Again, you and DH need to be in agreement on whatever it is you're addressing/deciding/choosing/etc., and present that united front when the issue comes up.

    5. I agree a face-to-face is in order here. Don't send that letter. You and DH need to sit down and have a face-to-face first, though. Make sure you're in agreement on everything, that you understand the others' position. Ensure you're ready to face the ILs together, and ready to stand your ground. Then the two of you together need to sit down with MIL and FIL together and hash this out.

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  • OP - If you have not already sent the response letter to your IL's, I am BEGGING you not to send it.  It comes across as extremely disrespectful and I think that it will create way bigger problems.  You have made some really hurtful statements in your letter. You don't have the right to talk to her that way.  I may be old fashioned, but you should respect your MIL simply because she's your elder and she's your H's mom.   

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