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So What Do I Do Now?

LikeMinded's picture

So I ended up on this board on Thursday wanting to run away from my own life and I immediately received support (thank you all), and then tried to give some support to others. I did a little bit of disengaging, baby steps because I have bio kids. I figured out I don't hate my SKIDS, I'm just exhausted and feeling a bit used. So disengaging even a little has been good.

One thing I did do, is stay home with BD4 instead of going up to the snow wiht MIL, FIL , DH and SKIDS. BD4 was sick and I thought this would be a good way to start disengaging from MIL.

See one of the things that made me come to this board is that my MIL called me a "drunk" in front of our kids. It was a joke, so at first I didn't take offense. I don't drink that much, so it wasn't true in any way shape or form, so it's not anything anyone would take seriously, but I guess it bothered me. After five years of her passive aggressive behavior, it bothered me.

To me a "drunk" is someone who sits on their butt drinking and does not help out. I am taking care of a householdl of six. I take care of her son, her grandchildren, and I work full time. I am exhausting myself... yet she reduces me to the title of "drunk" in front of my kids.

It stung.

The next evening, DH said something that I perceived as a criticism, and I freaked out. I blew up and threatened to leave. Way over the top, way out of character. After some digging, we realized MIL's comment really did a number on me.

So, without me there as a buffer, the trip to the snow turned into a huge fight between DH and his parents. To his credit he went to bat for me. It was a long conversation where DH confronted MIL about all her passive aggressive behavior towards me. Told her I was his wife and she was always trying to take over whenever I put anything together like a birthday party. He told her it was not ok to insult me.

The conversation went back to his first failed marriage and how much she had to do with that. He ended up confronting her and asking her if hshe was just trying to get rid of wife number two to see if wife number three would be any better.

Get this... she didn't deny it! She said, "well... you guys did get together kind of fast" (we've been together five years now, and I actually believe we're going to make it).

So there it is. I mean there were years of passive aggressive behavior pointing to this, but now it''s out in the open. At least I can look in the mirror and hold my head up high, because I did nothing to this woman except try to be part of her family. When she had surgery, I took a day off of work and cooked a pot of stew and went over to take care of her. I've tried to invite her to outings with my mom. I've tried to include MIL and FIL on every holiday.

It's never been enough. She just wanted in my house. She wanted to be buying my soon to be 50 DH socks and underwear. She wanted to be cooking in our kitchen. If she knew I was baking a BDay cake for someone, she'd bake a bigger, better cake. Silly territorial stuff like that.

I had to put my foot down when I came home from work at six one night to find that my MIL had taken up residence in my kitchen, made food, invited the neighbors, and started a dinner party with them and the kids before I got home. She saved me some, how great, lol! DH knew that was out of line because of this stuff happening in his previous marriage. So we didn't confront, but we made ourselves busy for a a while and didn't see them.

When my father died, MIL and FIL did the absolute minimum. They did not give my mom and I any support. Then, last year, they put pictures of all the kids on their Christmas tree... all except for BD13. And this was just after we lost my dad, her grandfather. Christmas morning at our house, I kept waiting for my MIL and FIL to do a toast to my dad on our first XMAS without him. Instead MIL started ranting at the table that we didn't welcome her enough in our home. THe meal DH cooked was ruined.

This is the same stuff she did to BM, so I guess I can't take it personally.

But this is so disappointing. We just went through years of custody battles, child abduction, and false accusations from BM. Things were finally starting to settle down because BM found a partner of her own... and now MIL is screwing everything up. It feels like the entire Universe is out to destroy this marriage, I swear. We have 3 kids with special needs.... frankly I don't know how were handling all this.

So what do I do now? MY DH is a good man, he is supportive, he loves me, and he's done nothing wrong. He just wants MIL and I to get along so we can have a healthy family, but I don't think I can see past this. Plus, she refuses to apologize for anything. She won't even apologize for leaving one kid of of the xmas tree. How can I forgive when there's neverr any ownership on what was said or done? For one thing, I'm keeping my daughter away from this woman because she has her own bio grandparents who adore her, and she doesn't need this crap.


LikeMinded's picture

They live 20 min away. Actually, they were just trying to buy a house in our neighborhood, DH put an end to that over the weekend... I hope.

Monchichi's picture

Sally, some do. Among many other things I have endured, which is why I no longer speak to the lovely unikitty.

LikeMinded's picture

Yeah, you're absolutely right. DH is trying, he's been through this before, I guess BM did me a favor in this respect.

HappilySelfish679's picture

What ?? MIL was in your kitchen cooking inviting neighbors without you knowing ? You gotta be kidding, right ??? wTF - She's lucky I'm not her DIL . Real lucky .
How about you growing a pair and establishing healthy boundaries ? I would have driven up there guns blazing fire spitting if she would have called me a drunk in front of my kids, not hiding behind DH and let him do batte for me . Good luck I would not allow MiL back in my house , ever . Stand up for yourself !

LikeMinded's picture

Crazy, right? I mean, who does that?

DH never let her get away with that again. She came under the guise of wanting to see the kids. The kids are now in after-school programs getting math tutoring, so there is no time for her to see them during the week. The last time she brought some cakes by, I actually put them down the disposal (DH saw, but kids didn't).

Letting DH handle it is actually is working in my favor. MIL has nothing against me--I mean I'm squeeky clean. I've been polite and courteous this entire time. She, on the other hand, is making an a$$ out of herself, and now, I have every right to disengage.

If I get in her face, she will berate me to the kids the way she talks to them about BM.

I'm ok with her being the bad guy.

Tuff Noogies's picture

hi, and welcome (sad as to why u're here, but happy that u found us!)

repeat after me - F*CK HER.
what? i said F*CK HER.

she is toxic to your marriage, and has pretty much come right out and said it. F*CK HER. she wants u and dh to fail as partners. F*CK HER.

my MIL is the same way. for years she cursed dumb@$$ for being a $#itty mom, called DFCS on her and all that. while taking her out to lunch (for the kids, of course!), going shopping together (for the kids, of course!) and inviting her to hang out by the pool (for the kids, of course!).

it all came to a head about four years ago, dh finally confronted her about all her passive aggressive bull$#it towards me. she actually screamed in his face that dumb@$$ was her family and will ALWAYS BE.

and u know what i said? F*CK HER. u know what dh said? F*CK HER. he's hurt as hell that the woman who raised him to be such a good man has rejected HIS choice of life partner, in favor of someone who ripped him apart and raked him over the coals. (PS - we've been together eight years. not like i'm the New Woman.)

we used to do everything together as a large family, MIL, FIL, dh, me, and the three kids. now we do nothing together. i havent talked to the bit@# since that day four yrs ago, and dh doesn talk to her except in regards to the kids. shortly before Christmas, when he was feeling a bit sappy about how nice things used to be, he asked his mother what could be done to bury the hatchet - she changed the subject. his response? F*CK HER.

some people are just born wicked. some people gradually become that way for one reason or another. either way, they are not someone u need to have in your life. F*CK 'EM! if your MIL falls into that category, F*CK HER TOO! let dh handle her, you write her off and have a happy life without that kind of poison.

LikeMinded's picture

Yeah, well I'm following in your foot steps.

Eight years? Wow, how obnoxious. I'm really sorry. It's hard to meet a man, and feel like you're gaining a new family, only to have one person completely Sh!t on it all.

I think in my case it was different. She actively participated in getting rid of BM. I know because when I met DH he told me he and BM had been to marriage counseling for 2 years and mostly talked about MIL and FIL.

So she was happy when BM left, even though her grandkids suffered a divorce. She started to come over to DH's and be the matriarch at his house, cleaning laundry, buying him clothes, etc. She was VERY happy to be the woman in charge of DH and SKIDS.

Mind you, this lovely period only lasted a couple months, because before you know it I was there. I, unknowingly, messed up her fantasies of control. Control over DH, control of the kids.

While we were dating, DH organized a bday party for SS who was turing 8. He paid all these tickets for this kiddie amusement park with a quaint carousel, petting zoo, little train, etc. MIL and FIL set up their camper in a neighboring camp area and actually MOVED THE PARTY. They moved all the guests to their camp spot where they had set up AN ENTIRE NEW PARTY, with an entire spread of food and additional guests! DH was so annoyed... unbelievable.

So we have been pushing back as a couple, and that's why she's pissed at me. BM didn't have DH on her side all the time, but I do. MIL has lost her power.

I think she was secretly hoping that I would disappear like BM did. And... she was poking at me once in a while to help me along my way. I see it clearly now.

But it's never been disrespectful before. I have to take an even harder stance and cut her out. DH is the one who's punished. There's no winning here Sad

Tuff Noogies's picture

*evil grin* YUP - "end the conversation with saying that you both hope she can respect your boundaries, that you love her and want to include her."

and if she doesnt like it? F*CK HER!!! }:)

LikeMinded's picture

Hahahaha! Thanks for the chuckle...

I think I'm past any conversation with her.

LikeMinded's picture

DH has been having these types of talks with his mom since before I was ever in the picture. She just doesn't get it. She denies doing anything wrong and then punishes DH by leaving town for a while and giving us the silent treatment.

Months later, we try again to do something with the in-laws, and she goes back to stepping on toes.

So she doesn't learn, she doesn't listen, she doesn't take responsibility for anything. She's like a toddler, only seeing her needs.

Believe it or not, she's the victim of callling me a "drunk". When DH called her out on it, she said that I couldn't take a joke and that now she has to watch everything she says. She's just not allowed to say anything. So she insults me, and once again, she's the poor victim.

My mom was not surprised at all, she said she heard FIL refer to DH as my "boyfriend". She also noticed MIL cringe lately when we hold hands or kiss.

So how to do this without punishing DH or the kdis. I mean, she wants my BS4 to go over there and visit, and I'm like "hell no!"

Also, I was talking to a buddy and we couldn't even come up with a scenario where it would be ok to call someone a "drunk" as a joke. Even as pals, even if we were drinking together, even if we were actually drunk, it would still hurt us if the other person called us a "drunk".

Am I wrong to feel disrespected? I mean, it was in front of all 4 kids... (and it will probably get back to BM).

Tuff Noogies's picture

NOPE. u are not wrong to feel how you do. everyone is entitled to their feelings.

she is toxic. she is poison to your family. F*CK HER!

it does hurt to see the man you love not have a decent relationship w/ the woman who raised him. it would hurt to not have a set of grandparents not involved in your bs's life. but this is how SHE is choosing for it to be. SHE has carefully constructed this. there's no one to blame but her. but it would hurt worse if your family was subjected to her toxicity time after time after time.

i totally get what you mean about being past talking! let dh handle anything to do with her from here on out. TOTAL disnegagement - dont even bring her up in conversation, and if someone else does just say "mmmhmmm, thats nice" and change the subject.

i refer to my MIL as the Queen of all Passive Aggressive. we used to spend weekends with them and the kids, in their house that dh grew up in. h3ll, we had our vow renewal ceremony on the front porch, because that home MEANT 'Family'. she stood up for me that day also. telling me i'm the best thing that's ever happened to dh and the kids, "you're an angel sent from God himself!" and all along she was stabbing a knife in my back, campaigning actively to turn the kids against me and trying to cause a rift between dh and i. the kids have even confirmed it.

screw her and the horse she rode in on. same goes for your MIL. i am done, she is no longer a part of my life. i am amused from time to time by some of her antics, but that's really the extent of it. the only reason i speak of her here is when there are others who are having similar MIL issues. u're not alone!!!

seriously, save your sanity and your mental health and just be done with her. dh asked me a few months ago if i'd ever get over what MIL said and did. i just shrugged and said "eh. that bridge burned a long time ago, and the ashes have long since blown away. if she wants to build a *new* bridge, she knows exactly where to find me. that's up to her."

save your peace of mind. F*CK HER! Biggrin Blum 3 Wink

LikeMinded's picture

Yep, you'e right, you're absolutely right.

And as far as your MIL is concerned, how short sighted. Doesn't she realize that some day she'll be elderly and need help from the two of you? Or that if she's unkind to mom, she's going to see the kids less? I'm amazed at these people and their short-term planning.

I'm sorry that happened to you too. I don't understand it really--I know when my son's grown, the last thing I'll want to do is cause trouble in his marriage... or go to anyone's house to cook for them! I plan to be real happy if they invite me to eat, and just show up with some flowers and a smile. I'll just be happy that someone was considerate enough to invite me (which is basically my mom's attitude... she's just grateful to be included).

ExArmydad's picture

And my DW wonders why I always put my mother in her place every single time she says something left-field or passive-aggressive. I'll go to bat and swing for the fence for the DW. I just can't have my mother try and run the show in my house.

She went to bat for me with hers last week. That felt great because she normally doesn't.

The way I put it to DW early on was that we're in control, not them. Nothing goes by us. No outside influences come in this house. It stung the MIL's at first but its calming down now.

I'm sorry about your loss!