Family Matters
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Parent Relatioship

We have  37 year old son who has been married for 3 years. This is the second marriage for both him and his wife. His wife has a 10 year old son. They all went to counseling to form a blended family. It was a success and both my son's wife and her son were accepted into our family. We treated the wife's son as our own grandchild. They were all told by us we are so happy for all of them. We spent holidays with my son's new family including the in-laws. Both my wife and myself have liberal views when it comes to politics. My son's in-laws including his wife do not share the same views, which we respect. We have never had a conversation with the our daughter-in-law, or her family, but apparently social media has played a part in tearing our new happy family apart. My wife will post numerous political material on her Facebook account, which my son's wife and in-law has been following all along. Fast forward to the problem. My son and his wife are expecting a child in October. My daughter-in law and her mother has sent a cruel hurtful email and Facebook message belittling my wife's view. They became so angry, my son's mother-in -law threaten my wife and told her to stay out of her daughters life and stop sucking the life out of our son. We were dumbfounded at the entire situation. Instead of my son saying something to his wife about her behavior he stayed silent. At this point we have no contact with my son and his family, and with a baby due, which is our first grandchild we are worried we will never be able to see the baby. This all started over political views which were never discussed with any of them other than postings on social media. At this point we don't know how to handle this situation and get back into our son's life.

Re: Parent Relatioship

  • Wow, I wonder what she could have said to make them react like that ? 

  • Yeah, some more details would help. What exactly was the Facebook post your wife made that upset them so much?

    And what did they say to her in response - was it politics, or personal?

    If this is a run of the mill liberal vs. conservative disagreement I'd advise one way, but if its something more personal or potentially offensive then I'd advise differently. Can you share more?

     

  • I personally hate political rants on Facebook.  It isn't an appropriate forum for such a topic, especially when your "friends" with people of an opposing view and you know full well they're going to see it.  For some people politics is like religion, especially when you consider morally charged issues such as abortion and gay marriage.  You're asking for trouble putting that stuff out there.

    That said though, your DIL and her Mom took it way too far.  As much as I hate that commentary on Facebook, I'm able to look away.  I might piss and moan about to anyone who will listen but I would never allow it to create such a huge rift. 

    Look, you guys have something really special happening, the birth of your first grandkid, your son's first child.  If you want to be a part of that, just take the first step.  Reach out to your son.  Tell him you want to bury the hatchet and move on.  I would suggest your wife and DIL de-friend or ignore one another to avoid this in the future.  Make a deal to NEVER discuss politics again, under any circumstances.

    Normally I don't advise people to make these steps when they weren't wrong but JFC, a fight over left-wing versus right-wing is so f*cking insignificant.  All of you need to put the bullsh!t aside because a baby is coming into the world and the more people that live him or her, the better.

    I hope your DIL realizes how stupid this is.  And as far her Mom goes, screw it.  Your feelings toward one another shouldn't have any bearing on your relationship with your son, DIL, and grandkid.

     

     

  • As they say there are 3 subjects never to be discussed: money, politics or religion.

    We don't know what the post was. It could be anything from one of those dumb memes (or however it's spelled) from a link to a news story to just about anything.

    And it is very difficult to "read" emotion on the net. This whole thing could be just some dumb misunderstanding or something little that blew up into World War III.

    Maybe the 3 of you can just call a truce. JemmaWRX: nicely put.
  • What did your wife post? In this currant climate it isn't funny nor appropriate. I can ignore most of my FB feed but with family it's different. Your DIL is pregnant and she is thinking of the future. The future of her child and who will be around her child. Not good timing for your wife. 

    You are also putting your son in a bad spot. With my MIL, she wants my H to choose. Her or me. I'm the mother of his child and his wife. Who do you think he should choose? It's not a choice that a husband should choose, it shouldn't be a question. Knock that off. If you want to salvage ANYTHING going forward don't put your son in this position. It isn't right or fair to him. I actually think your son is one heck of a good guy.

    As for what to do, I don't really know. Again, we need to know what she said or posted. 

  • You raised a good man who is standing beside his wife, he should be commended.

    If you want a relationship swallow your pride and make the first move.

  • Hey, I feel for ya. About three years ago, I thought it was fun to post political/ anti-religious content on FB, and my FIL became very upset with me because of it. The sad part was, he actually misunderstood what I had posted, and was actually upset over something I hadn't really said. He wrote me (what I thought was) a condescending, all-over-the-place e-mail. I was genuinely confused (because again, I hadn't actually said what he was saying I said) so I asked him to clarify. He became very angry that I hadn't just apologized, so he unfriended me. We've never really discussed the whole thing, but we did both decide to just put it in the past and forget about it, because I think we both value our relationship above everything else. We are still not friends on FB, though, which is probably for the best. And I no longer post controversial things, partly because I've just plain lost interest, and partly because I have more and more older relatives who have friended me, and I really just don't feel like dealing with the fallout if they get offended.

    ANyway, I think your wife has every right to post what she likes on FB (assuming that she's not coming after anyone in real life, of course). ANd I think it's a shame that your DIL and her parents handled it as badly as they did (I might feel differently if I saw what your wife posted, but for now i'll give you the benefit of the doubt). Having said that, if you do post what you like, you have to accept that other people have the right not to like it. And if these are people that you can't afford to write off, you may have a problem.

    My advice is to pick up the phone and call your son, if you haven't already. You don't necessarily need to apologize, but you can say something like, "It was never our intention to attack or hurt anyone." THen, promise not to discuss these kinds of things with these family members ever again. If your wife wants to continue posting on FB, she should arrange things so that other family members can't see her posts. Honestly, I think it's a shame that other people are so sensitive (seriously, why can't we have open discussions about these things?) but that's how they are, so if you want to get along, you need to play the game.

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  • imageGreco1014:

    Hey, I feel for ya. About three years ago, I thought it was fun to post political/ anti-religious content on FB, and my FIL became very upset with me because of it. The sad part was, he actually misunderstood what I had posted, and was actually upset over something I hadn't really said. He wrote me (what I thought was) a condescending, all-over-the-place e-mail. I was genuinely confused (because again, I hadn't actually said what he was saying I said) so I asked him to clarify. He became very angry that I hadn't just apologized, so he unfriended me. We've never really discussed the whole thing, but we did both decide to just put it in the past and forget about it, because I think we both value our relationship above everything else. We are still not friends on FB, though, which is probably for the best. And I no longer post controversial things, partly because I've just plain lost interest, and partly because I have more and more older relatives who have friended me, and I really just don't feel like dealing with the fallout if they get offended.

    ANyway, I think your wife has every right to post what she likes on FB (assuming that she's not coming after anyone in real life, of course). ANd I think it's a shame that your DIL and her parents handled it as badly as they did (I might feel differently if I saw what your wife posted, but for now i'll give you the benefit of the doubt). Having said that, if you do post what you like, you have to accept that other people have the right not to like it. And if these are people that you can't afford to write off, you may have a problem.

    My advice is to pick up the phone and call your son, if you haven't already. You don't necessarily need to apologize, but you can say something like, "It was never our intention to attack or hurt anyone." THen, promise not to discuss these kinds of things with these family members ever again. If your wife wants to continue posting on FB, she should arrange things so that other family members can't see her posts. Honestly, I think it's a shame that other people are so sensitive (seriously, why can't we have open discussions about these things?) but that's how they are, so if you want to get along, you need to play the game.

    I'm kind of in line with this. You should be free to post what you want on Facebook - others have the option to not read it if they don't like it, block it in privacy settings so they don't see it, or unfriend you - it's that simple. You, in turn, can also set privacy settings so specific people only see specific things or just block them altogether. The way OP's DIL and her mother handled the situation was out of line - at the same time, you don't want to make an already tense situation worse by putting your son in the middle.  

    I once had my H say something to me about stuff I posted - saying that 'people' complained. I KNOW he meant his mother, but he refused to say it was her, so I basically said MY WALL - I am free to post what I want and those 'people' are also free to not read it or block me because I don't really care. For the record, I too am extremely liberal with my views, as is my H. My MIL, however, is not, and it doesn't stop her for imposing those views on us. I tune her out IRL, but my Facebook wall is off limits. 

  • I get the feeling that your wife posted something very anti-gay and you DIL has a gay brother or something. That's one of the only scenarios in which I can see this resulting in the mess you're in now.
  • imageCandaceLafleur:
    I get the feeling that your wife posted something very anti-gay and you DIL has a gay brother or something. That's one of the only scenarios in which I can see this resulting in the mess you're in now.

    The OP said he and his wife have "liberal" views when it comes to politics so I doubt it was an anti-gay remark.

  • imageJemmaWRX:

    imageCandaceLafleur:
    I get the feeling that your wife posted something very anti-gay and you DIL has a gay brother or something. That's one of the only scenarios in which I can see this resulting in the mess you're in now.

    The OP said he and his wife have "liberal" views when it comes to politics so I doubt it was an anti-gay remark.

    Good point, and I do agree with you - this is why I find the whole thing really strange. 

    image

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  • imageTofumonkey:
    imageJemmaWRX:

    imageCandaceLafleur:
    I get the feeling that your wife posted something very anti-gay and you DIL has a gay brother or something. That's one of the only scenarios in which I can see this resulting in the mess you're in now.

    The OP said he and his wife have "liberal" views when it comes to politics so I doubt it was an anti-gay remark.

    Good point, and I do agree with you - this is why I find the whole thing really strange. 

    Im going with pro-choice post that hit a nerve with a mother who not only religious, but anti-abortion for personal reasons.

    I have seen some nasti-grams aimed at the anti-abortionists that are personal attacks vs pro-choice information. If you have a mother, who turned to god after she had an abortion many moons ago and your SIL's mother is posting something about your character, I can see the hurt and anger.

    Or it could be someone who used a legal gun to save their lives only to read some of the baby killer posts out there.

    Or it could be the daughtet of a dead <insert American conflict> soldier who read a military baby killer comment.

    The point being, while what you post on your wall is your Constitutional right and all, it is not an anonymous medium. Just like any other form of communication, you are letting anyone with access to your page, know who you are and your beliefs. 

    And like any other type of communique, when you post something inflammatory about another Preston's belief that person can feel judged by you - along woth the chance that the other person may not like you for feeling judged or just that you have this belief to begin with.

    the reality is, if you feel strong enough about something to post about it a number of times on social media, then it really is a STRONG belief and therefor a STONG part of who you are.  

    Now, the MIL was totally rude and wrong with responding to whatever your wife wrote in this manner.  And the DIL was childish and wrong in allowing her mother to get in the middle OR act on her behalf. Finally, the son is a weakling and wrong for not, at least once, contacting his parents to express HIS feelings on the issue, whether he agrees with his wife or feels that he has to side with her becuase they are married. 

    But in the end, whatever your wife wrote that final time had to be THAT strong to have THAT strong of a response, given how long your differing views have been known (at least 3 years of them reading your wife's FB posts). At the very least an apology for making them feel that your wife's post was aimed at them might be in order. Though honestly, if you think all conservatives who beleive in <insert x belief> are evil. There is now way around saying that the MIL isn't evil, now is there. 

    [IMG]http://i633.photobucket.com/albums/uu52/Iluminespics/IMG_4759.jpg[/IMG]
    TofumonkeyManther1222
  • Wow, seems like someone is over sensitive. Your wife should be free to post whatever she wants!

    Facebook has an "ignore" button for a reason! I use it all the time and have even taken the friends out of my news feed that I know post political crap I don't want to see.

    If possible, in the future, she might want to change that "friends can see" button to "everyone except..." and put in the names of the people making a fuss

    But yeah, pick up the phone, and talk to your son!
  • I agree with PPs. Ask your son out for coffee and talk this over. Good luck!
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