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Anyone else have Asian in-laws?.......... - Page 2

post #21 of 35
I'm not sure if what you mean by, "mixed" marriage. Caucasian and Asian? However, both DH and I are Asian American. I'm Taiwanese American, DH is Korean American. I do not get along with my mil at all, she is just one of those ppl who doesn't seem to get along with anyone (I don't even think other Koreans like her) and in the past five yrs I've pretty much stopped putting a big effort into my relationship with mil, b/c it seems totally impossible for us to have a, "normal" relationship and I always ended up feeling frustrated and angry. She always thinks that she is right, she basically expects everyone to kiss her butt and she is often insensitive to other ppl, but she herself is EXTREMELY sensitive, it is so easy to offend or upset her and if you do so, she will hold a massive grudge against you. She is EXTREMELY superficial, very judgemental, all she cares about is $, ppl's looks and status, what kinds of things they have, she's basically just an all around toxic, bitter, unhappy person who drags everyone down with her. FIL is a nice person, but basically is dominated over by MIL, and will take her abuse and enable her nasty behavior. The only ppl she is nice to are her two children (sons), they can do no wrong. I tell my DH, "Your mom acts like you and your brother sh*t gold." She also adores her grandkids. FWIW, I used to think my mil treated me poorly, b/c I was not Korean (she hates other Asians too btw, she is one of the biggest racists I have ever met). I often think that had my DH married white, my mil would have been happier, she has said rude things like, "At least if my son married a white girl, their children would have beautiful colored skin and big eyes." I guess I shouldn't be surprised, I think there is a lot of self-hate among Koreans about their looks. Koreans have THE highest % of plastic surgery in the WORLD, and they basically get the surgeries in order to look less Asian/Korean. Anyway, mil also has a KOREAN dil (not Korean American, but born and raised Korean who didn't come to the US until she was in her late 20's). They get along horribly. My Korean sil and I get along pretty well. She told me that our Korean mil is one of the worst that she has ever encountered and not to judge all Koreans from my exp, b/c we just got stuck with a really rotten one.

I can assure you that there are plenty of Korean dils who have problems with their Korean mils. Haven't you seen any of the K-dramas? I sometimes think my mil tries to hard to emulate the evil Korean mil stereotype...
post #22 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
Do any other mixed-marriage Mamas here have Asian in-laws? If so, how do you get along with them? How do they treat you? What do you call your MIL and FIL? How do you get along with your SILs and BILs?
I'm Irish/German American, and my husband is Kazakh and Tatar. (So my in-laws are Central Asian). They moved here in the 1980s, but my in-laws just moved away to Europe last year. Culturally, my in-laws seem to identify more as Russian/European than Kazakh or Asian.

I get along pretty well with my in-laws. Our families have similar values (health, family togetherness, etc.) so culturally our families don't seem to feel "foreign" to each other. I think that my in-laws treat me exactly like one of their kids--always giving me advice, and telling me what they think I should do. That REALLY gets on my nerves, but it's coming from a very loving place.

I call my MIL and FIL by their names. I call my DH's grandparents Apashka and Atashka (Kazakh for Grandma and Grandpa). My SIL and I get along wonderfully. She's the only other family member we have nearby, and she's one of my best friends.
post #23 of 35
I'm in a weird position. I have Asian-American in-laws, but my mother is of the same culture and generation as my in-laws. My father is Caucasian.

My maternal grandparents were pretty hard on my dad for the first 25 years of my parents marriage. When they first found out my parents got married, they actually disowned my mother. Mom only "got back into the family" because one of her aunts intervened and because her sister maintained contact. Their beef with my dad was that he wasn't a college educated professional making a lot of money.

Despite being half Asian myself, I still run into "culture clashes" with my in-laws. My mother's family is a bit more, um, assimilated into American culture than DH's family.
post #24 of 35
Thread Starter 
WC_hapamama -- what happened to your mother actually happened to my Korean SIL!!!!!

SIL is the oldest child (of two. my dh is the youngest.) and she married a white man. Her parents pretty much disowned her. They only really came back around into her life when she had a sudden and serious health problem & almost died. Only then did they "let her back in" so to speak. Also, and I know this sounds terrible, eventually her white husband started making a lot of money, and SIL would buy her Korean parents a lot of things, and I think that helped. Anyway, to this day I feel that my SIL is insecure about her position with my MIL. (FIL is deceased). I think SIL feels threatened by me as far as her mom goes. She has no reason to -- my MIL can't stand me and thinks I'm a failure in every way. I have no interest in taking MIL away from SIL. I have a close relationship with my own family and we live near my family. So, SIL really has nothing to worry about. But she does. I think that when she got married, they really considered her initially to have "married out of the family", like in the old days. See, my ILs came here in the 1970's, and MIL and FIL remained sort of stuck in 1970's Korean culture, if that makes any sense. They rejected American culture, and they weren't still in Korea so they didn't experience the normal and vibrant changes that happen in Korea (or any country) that change the cultural norms & the country becomes more "modern".........they just held onto the norms and values of Korea circa 1970's.

Anyway, I just thought it was really something that your mom and my SIL experienced a similar thing.

Question -- how does your mom get along with your in-laws?
post #25 of 35
I am Bulgarian American and DH is Chinese American. My in-laws came here for college: FIL is from Hong Kong and a lovely person, MIL is from Vietnam but mostly ethnically Chinese. I do not get along with MIL--she has serious psychological issues. She tried to break DH and me when we first got together and still thinks of me as the woman who stole her only child away. She is disrespectful and plain rude to all of us. FIL and I have a great relationship but unfortunately he is under MIL's slipper and cannot do as he pleases.

DH is having a hard time with his parents. He is staying away from them (MIL is very bossy and hurts DH regularly with what one would call emotional abuse),so we do not see them more than once a year. We see my side weekly, and my kids are super close to my mother. I feel bad they do not have that relationship with their paternal side, but there is not much that can be done about it.

The rest of DH's relatives are wonderful and they always rave about how talented and beautiful our children are, and how great it is that DH and I found each other. So this helps!

I wish I had a good relationship with MIL--I would take any of DH's aunts for the job...
post #26 of 35
Does it count if my DH is the one with Asian in-laws? I'm the one who's Asian (Chinese Canadian) and my late mother never really took a liking to the love of my life. My dad was reasonable and easy-going, but enabled my mom's less than healthy psychological issues and manipulative ways.

To this day, DH still hasn't found a suitable way to address my dad, but occasionally might mumble Mr. Dad's Lastname. Dad recently has a new girlfriend, and she is thoughtful and considerate. Even knit me a scarf for Christmas! ::

Thankfully, DH's family are close by, and helpful but by no means intrusive. We do not have MIL issues. Perhaps it might be because both my mother and DH's mom passed away?
post #27 of 35
I do! I'm white and my DH is Chinese. He came here at 20 and his parents came with him. However, they never learned English. They live in an area in which there are a lot of Asians and get by without speaking it. They treat me very well. In fact, my DH says they love me more than him since I, as if he had no part in it, gave them their first grandson that will carry their last name. Since they do not speak English, we are not close. I cannot communicate with them except to tell them I'm hungary or tired since I know very little Chinese. I call them YeYe and NeNe, which mean Grandpa and Grandma in Chinese. My DH says I should call them Mom and Dad, which is common in Chinese culture, but I'm not really comfortable with calling anyone Mom and Dad except my parents, so Grandma and Grandpa works. I have two SILs. One lives in China and I have only met her once when we went to China. She doesn't speak English either, so we got along well, but couldn't communicate. My other SIL lives in New York and is a doctor. She came to our wedding and we got along fine. I talk to her occasionally on the phone, but not often. She has two children, my niece and nephew, but I have never met them.
post #28 of 35
I wanted to add that I do think my in-laws were a bit disappointed that their only son married a white American girl. They definitely expected him to marry a Chinese girl. They have never treated me poorly though and adore their grandson.
post #29 of 35
I'm Euro-American and my husband is HK-Chinese and we live in Hk. My m-i-l lives 3/4 of the time in Toronto & 1/4 here in HK. My f-i-l passed away about 8 years before I met DH. 1/2 my s-i-l's live in HK and 1/2 in No. Am, as does b-i-l.

We get along fine, my in-laws and me. We're all pretty easy-going people. When we all get together it's usually to eat and relax. The biggest problem is language - my Cantonese isn't very good and m-i-l doesn't speak English. But we manage to have basic conversations and now that DD is older, she sometimes can help act as my translator.

I really love and admire my m-i-l - she is strong and independent and also loves to have fun. She bore and raised 9 children while also running a family business w/ my f-i-l. She spent most of her life working really hard and living in rough circumstances (like many HK people of her generation).

Now that she's retired, she really enjoys life. She likes to get together w/ hers kids and grand-kids, but she also likes to spend a lot of time w/ her own friends - meeting for breakfast, playing mahjong, window shopping, etc.

One of the things I love about DH is his wonderful relationship w/ his mom. When she's in town they talk on the phone at least once a day and both laugh a lot. When she's in Toronto, they talk a couple of times a week.

Maybe it's also because there's something similar between us (my m-i-l and me) although she REALLY reminds me a lot of my own paternal grandma, who I loved and respected.
post #30 of 35
South Asian in-laws here.

When DH and I decided that he would relocate to start our life together in the US, I made a trip to meet his parents as a gesture of respect. It was actually kind of humorous and sweet, because the two of them got in a squabble about what I should call them. He wanted me to say “Ma and Baba”, but she didn’t feel that was exactly appropriate until our Hindu wedding ceremony (not till May 2009) so I actually call them Auntie and Uncle.

They have always treated me well. DH is a little nutty about “protecting” me from them, he seems frightened all the time that if he doesn’t constantly mediate between us I’ll start hating them or they will start hating me. I know I’m not what they wanted as a DiL. They are not unkind people, but like many Indians of their generation, they hoped to arrange marriages for their children, just as marriages were arranged for them.

The effort to match is so minute that his father and mother are not only of the same ethnicity, language, religion, caste, sub-caste and career orientation, their two families come from the same area, have the same range of skin tone, and as a kicker, his mother was born with the same last name as his father. I’m a white American Neopagan, don’t speak Bengali, older than him (not done) OK, a lot older than him (never done!) and partially physically disabled (So why would he want ME?). And I’ve taken their son literally as far away as he could get on earth just when they are facing old age. I understand why the situation is hard for them, and I have compassion for them. I also think our relationship will grow closer after the babies come and DH feels more secure.

I exist pretty low on the drama meter, and I very much rely on a mindset of relaxed respect being a two way street. I let them have control of things that do me and my own little family no harm, like making all the decisions for our Hindu marriage celebrations, and keep personal control of things that could harm, like how to discipline my kids. They do offer far to much, and to strong of advice on personal issues like healthcare, religion, etc... but I keep in mind that it is only them treating me just as they would their own child in their own culture, so I give them gratitude and affection for caring so much about me, then tell them I've made the decision that works for me and won't change.

I would very much like to spend part of my kids childhood living in India to give them advantages in language, self-identity, and a sense of global community, so I remain motivated to build and maintain the best relationship possible with ILs.
post #31 of 35
Do any other mixed-marriage Mamas here have Asian in-laws? If so, how do you get along with them? How do they treat you? What do you call your MIL and FIL? How do you get along with your SILs and BILs?

Hi! I'm new here but didn't see an introduction thread so figured I'd just jump right in. Hope no one minds . Short intro though: DH is African-American/Japanese, I'm Polish/Caucasian and we have one DD who is 16 months.

My MIL is Japanese. I feel that we get along alright- although I think we're both trying to make it better. I was raised in the United States and she in Japan (although she's here now) so I think there are some cultural barriers we need to break through. Some might just be personality though- I find it difficult to get close to her because I'm a very warm, open, emotional person and she is more of a keep to herself type person so to speak. I care for her a lot though and she has taught me how to cook some Japanese dishes which I knew took her out of her comfort zone, that was really nice.

She treats me well but again I feel like she's closed off to me and seems more open with my BIL's girlfriend (who's been with my BIL longer than I've been with DH). I would love to have the relationship that they have with each other.

I call her by her name + san. She told DH (before we were married) that that's what she wanted me to call her so I have. However, BIL's gf calls her Mom. I don't feel quite comfortable with calling her that but I'd prefer to call her something more familial.

The whole family is very individualistic so to speak. They spend most of their time in their rooms so when we visit I rarely see them. That being said I'm as close to my BIL as I can be given that arrangement. We make small talk when I do see him and he no longer sees me as an intruder (I assume). SIL and I get along rather nicely (usually) although sometimes we have disagreements when we hang out. We both majored in psychology in college so through that we find lots to share. I do wish I was closer with his whole family though- I hope that will come with time and effort.
post #32 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
Question -- how does your mom get along with your in-laws?
Civil... my parents live 400 miles away, so they really only see my in-laws every 2-3 years. Usually we take the kids to go visit my parents rather than my parents coming up here.

I get the impression from my MIL that she thinks that my family is a little to "low class" for her, which bugs the crap out of me when she makes offhanded comments that are digs at my parents. My dad finds her kind of annoying.
post #33 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by BurgundyTulip View Post
I call her by her name + san. She told DH (before we were married) that that's what she wanted me to call her so I have. However, BIL's gf calls her Mom. I don't feel quite comfortable with calling her that but I'd prefer to call her something more familial.
My MIL tried to get me to call her "mom" when DH and I first got married, and I just wasn't comfortable with that. I already have a mom, tymv. I call her by her first name. I'm very close to my own mother, and it didn't seem right to call MIL "mom" because it would put her on equal footing with my own mother.

That said, my DH calls my parents "Mom and Dad"... but when I was growing up, half the neighborhood called my mother "Mom".
post #34 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by FelixMom View Post
Does it count if my DH is the one with Asian in-laws? I'm the one who's Asian (Chinese Canadian) and my late mother never really took a liking to the love of my life. My dad was reasonable and easy-going, but enabled my mom's less than healthy psychological issues and manipulative ways.

To this day, DH still hasn't found a suitable way to address my dad, but occasionally might mumble Mr. Dad's Lastname. Dad recently has a new girlfriend, and she is thoughtful and considerate. Even knit me a scarf for Christmas! ::

Thankfully, DH's family are close by, and helpful but by no means intrusive. We do not have MIL issues. Perhaps it might be because both my mother and DH's mom passed away?
Similar situation here. I'm the Asian American and DH is the one with the Asian in-laws.

He's pretty mellow and generally gets along with everyone including my mother who believe me could try ANYONE's patience. She's a lovely woman who just doesn't understand subtlety or minding her own business. Those are foreign concepts. She routinely offers unsolicited advice because ..well..that's how she is.

I think early on in our marriage, before we had DD, my mom felt that DH had stolen me away from them and made me part of his dysfunctional American family. Haha. As if we don't have any dysfuction in our family at all. My mom is not big on compliments (It's an Asian thing) so she doesn't say anything to DH's face about what a great dad he is to DD however I hear from my relatives that my mom talks about how great it is to have a SIL who cooks, cleans, and helps out with DD. My mom was raised in an era and in a culture where men just didn't do those things so she's happy to see how helpful DH is.
post #35 of 35
my mom is korean... dh is white he just calls my mom and dad by their first names......... yea its not going over too well with them... lol.....we been together 5 years and from day one my mom has been like- "my name is mom"... "call me mom"... but dh said this -- i have a mom, and a step mom, i dont need another mom..."

pissed off korean mom is not a pleasent thing to stand between.
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