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Is MIL toxic? (race related, maybe sensitive)

I'm Asian-American, DH is black. We have a beautiful 3yo DD and my MIL is obsessed with her hair. There are other issues that make me wonder if she's toxic but this is on my mind right now.

She confuses me because she has made various conflicting comments at different times. Like in a jelous tone that her hair is going to be so pretty and long and the other kids will hate her and say she thinks she's all that. These sort of silly comments started when she was still in my uterus! Who wants their child to be hated? Or to be looked at as different? This is clearly not a positive thing, it's not really a compliment, it's more of a passive aggressive comment.

Other times she will say mean critical things like looking at pictures of DD, her hair is wirey and you'll have a hard time maintaining it, you need to put it in 6 ties or braid it, you can't leave it out.

Now, this was a picture from Christmas morning. He hair was a puffy mess because she just got up.
Her hair does not get wirey at all, it's soft and fluffy, just messy looking before I condition and comb it and then her curls look pretty.

I don't want DD to develop a complex or obsess bc grandma is so focused on it. Also, it doesn't sit well with me. MIL has opened up to me about her past and feeling like the ugly ducking for being dark skinned. She may be carrying some of that resentment over to her own granddaughter.

WDYT?

Re: Is MIL toxic? (race related, maybe sensitive)

  • H needs to be an active participant in putting a stop to any questionable behavior by your MIL. I would have him talk to her and tell her you both don't want her making comments to or in front of your daughter that might cause her to feel bad about her appearance. If she does say things in front of your daughter after that, tell her to knock it off.

    That being said, a couple weird comments about her hair and what she will look like doesn't seem like that big if a deal. It's a little odd that you would take her talking about your unborn child thinking she is all that and people will not like her so seriously. It's been over 3 years...time to let that go. If she makes a comment like that again say, "that's a weird thing to say, why would you say that?". 

    Grand parents and other family members say all sorts of weird annoying things to and about kids. Some of it is just part of life. 

    Where is your H in all this?


    PnkBride
  • I'm Asian-American, DH is black. We have a beautiful 3yo DD and my MIL is obsessed with her hair. There are other issues that make me wonder if she's toxic but this is on my mind right now. She confuses me because she has made various conflicting comments at different times. Like in a jealous tone that her hair is going to be so pretty and long and the other kids will hate her and say she thinks she's all that. These sort of silly comments started when she was still in my uterus!

    Silly comments?

    This is downright childish.

    Right here and right now, stand up for yourself and your kiddo and tell her to stop the comments and the bullshit.  I don't think this is anybody you can reason with.

    Who wants their child to be hated? Or to be looked at as different? This is clearly not a positive thing, it's not really a compliment, it's more of a passive aggressive comment. Other times she will say mean critical things like looking at pictures of DD, her hair is wirey and you'll have a hard time maintaining it, you need to put it in 6 ties or braid it, you can't leave it out.

    This is one thing to say somebody's got kinky wiry hair --- But the catty comments are quite another: nip this in the bud and tell her to cut it out -- I would even go as far as to say that if she does it again, she will never see her grandchild.

    Now, this was a picture from Christmas morning. He hair was a puffy mess because she just got up. Her hair does not get wirey at all, it's soft and fluffy, just messy looking before I condition and comb it and then her curls look pretty. I don't want DD to develop a complex or obsess bc grandma is so focused on it. Also, it doesn't sit well with me. MIL has opened up to me about her past and feeling like the ugly ducking for being dark skinned. She may be carrying some of that resentment over to her own granddaughter. WDYT?
    As I said, you tell her to cut it out.

    And if she does not like it, too bad.
  • My husband hates it. He knows that her POV on these issues affected his sisters growing up. The younger one gets the brunt of it (older one gets more grief about her weight), some of her features are more from their dad's side of the family and I've heard MIL laughing and poking fun at her for her hair and nose in particular.
  • I wouldn't be okay with that either. I totally understand wanting your DD to grow up knowing that her looks don't define her worth as a person, and to love herself as she is. I would also get your DH to tell your mom that you don't want to hear these kinds of comments, especially when your DD is present. It sounds like she's really insecure and letting that influence how she talks about others. All you can do is ask her to stop, and make sure that you're giving your DD lots of healthy messages about loving what makes her unique. (Which I'm sure you'll do.) If anything, she'll probably recognize that her grandma is being rude. I grew up with a grandma that was always commenting about other people's looks, and my mom just told me that people usually do that because they don't feel good about themselves. I really appreciated that. Good luck!
    bingbongsmama
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