Originally Posted by Pirogi
This is the situation with my DH and his parents too. They think and verbalize that they are responsible for EVERY good thing that has happened in his life. His two advanced degrees? Well, thank god they were around (... or 100 miles away). His very existence in the US? All due to my MIL's sacrifice in leaving her home country and her friends and her job and moving to this country. Nothing is ever good enough to repay the debts.
What helped my DH was to read Toxic Parents. It really highlighted that particular manipulation tactic ("You owe me because ...") and helped him come to a place where he could be grateful for their help without being indebted to them.
Mil is like this too. Dh worked something like 80 hours a week during the summers and off semesters to save $ to put himself through school in his early 20's. At that time he was still living @ home and mil charged him more than she paid in rent for her apt - for his rent/food. Still she likes to tell everyone who will listen that she was so happy to be able to make the sacrifices of 80 hour work weeks herself to make sure that dh didn't have to work while he went to school. She neglects to mention that he paid for everything from his savings. She will also tell everyone she put him through medic school - during the first few years of our marriage. BUT I distinctly remember working MY butt off, eating lots of ramen noodles, driving dh all over for his school/vehiculars because we only had one vehicle @ the time and doing laundry every Friday after work at my mom's to save $. If anything, my mom would slip me $20 to help pay for gas or let me 'shop' at her house for groceries once in a while. But it was allllll mil, right?
Mil likes to rub it in my face that we don't have any living kiddos. She decided that dh couldn't father any kids until he turned 25, because she was too young to be a grandma until then. But as soon as he turned 25, right around the 1 year anniversary of our first mc - she started buying toys and books and even a new car 'for my grandbabies' - talk about a slap in a grieving mother's face. Ten years later, she still doesn't have any and she is a jerk about it. For the most part I have learned to walk away when she's on a tirade or talking about how she's such a great influence on the latest toddler in her apartment complex. She did invite us to her house this weekend to spend time w/ dh's cousin and his new wife/baby whom we haven't met yet and we'd love to see them, but the pressure/heart ache/annoyance of having to put up with mil's attitude and squeeze up to 6 adults into her tiny 2 bedroom apartment (not to mention that I tend to get staph infections after visiting her apartment since she's colonized) was just more than dh and I could bare today. So, we opted to stay home and I baked bread instead. Much better use of time. Grateful for a dh who after nearly 10 years of marriage 'gets' it alot of the time.