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What would you to a MIL who says she can not visit very often because you work? - Page 8

post #141 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulfaith View Post
Have you ever asked your MIL point-blank: "You spend a lot of time with (other grandkids), but you don't with (your son's name). Why is that?"

Perhaps phrasing it with the kids' names rather than making it about you vs. your SIL might help her to understand that it bugs you because it's about your son, not about you working vs. your SIL not, if that makes sense.


The genesis of this thread!!!! That [above] conversation is what started this! I asked my MIL point blank on the phone why they can't visit my son the same way they visit the other grandchildren (generally, within the same range).

And she replied, well you work, and SIL doesn't.

To which I replied SIL might disagree with that.

To which MIL responded "well, I mean, around the house and stuff. But you work out of the home a lot. You're not a stay-at-home mom."

By the way, I've never made this about SIL and me and never once articulated it that way to my MIL. It's always been about the kids, using their names, because that is truly what it's about.

If I didn't have a child, I wouldn't care that MIL never visited. I might even be relieved and/or pleased, given a lot of what she's done and said.

So, no, SIL has never enterered any conversation with MIL except when MIL brought it up.

I keep it focused on the kids and don't make cross-comparisons about the adults. I actually like my SIL and think she's one of the best people in our extended family, actually. I would never throw her under the bus like that. I never bring her up to MIL, ever, because MIL has been harsh on her at times too about certain things. It was MIL who brought her up. Not me.
post #142 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by EFmom View Post
Exactly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lolar2 View Post
Okay, NOW I understand your question. And no, I don't think your son is let down by your not doing the impossible. Do you fail as a mother if he wants the sky to be neon green today and it isn't?

I'm going to rephrase part of your middle paragraph to make it more accurate, using the three options you mentioned above:

Because if I ignore her, my son continues to get nothing and is treated as less.

Because if I take her at face value, my son continues to get nothing and is treated as less.

Because if I try to reason with her, my son continues to get nothing and is treated as less.

Does that make the situation clearer?

Is it OK that she is showing favoritism against your son? No. But can you do anything about it, beyond what you have already done (talking to her)? No. If you had the power to make people do things they don't feel like doing, we'd be seeing you on the news after you brokered peace in the Middle East. No one has that power.
Thanks guys.

You're probably right.

And, if I had such power, I wouldn't use it on silly, inconsquential stuff like this. Lolar, you are too clever. I loved your last paragraph.
post #143 of 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
What I don't get is that they don't see themselves as part of the solution. Our home is unwelcoming to them for x, y, and z reasons? Offer to do something to help us with that.

SIL is more relaxed and has more time to spend with you because she is a SAHM and her children are well provided for? Well, offer to do something for your other grandchild to make things easier around here. We are very strapped for cash and time and you are letting us hang to dry, all while criticizing this as a reason you can't visit an equitable amount.
As you said--they are speaking in code. It's not primarily that your home is unwelcoming to them for XYZ reasons. It goes a lot deeper. To start, it probably has to do with their relationship with your husband, then continues to their relationship with you. I bet you they can't really truly articulate why they don't like spending time at your house/with your family. It's just not black and white, not easily fixed, and most of all, they're not interested in fixing it. You are talking to a wall because there's no interest on the other side and never will be. Whether she "ought to" have interest or not--she doesn't.

I know it hurts; I've told you a bit about my relationship with my mom and it's the same way. She and I just turned out to be very different people with very different values (like you and your MIL). I think we have both been deeply disappointing to the other. My mom still makes an effort with me and me with her, probably because we have a much more primal relationship, but I well know she much prefers to spend time with my sister. They like all the same things and are comfortable around each other, hold the same political viewpoints and values, and my sister has lived exactly the life my mom imagined for us. You know what hurt the most? When I went to my parents' home (really far away) as an adult, wandered into their bedroom, and realized that every single photo (out of 10-12) was of my sister. Oh there are photos of me... in all the public spaces like the hallways and living rooms. It felt like I was included in the public life but not in her heart.

Anyway, a really long convoluted story to say that it's just not as simple as you don't have a guest room or a comfortable bed or you aren't there to do the heavy lifting as far as childcare while she plays doting grandma. It goes deep. It has to do with relationships. And probably more the relationship with your husband than with you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
No, they aren't going to change, most likely. You're probably all right about that.
Yes. I'm hoping if you hear it often enough from enough people that this will sink in better.
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
But the question was what would you do if your MIL said the reason she can't visit her grandchild an equitable amount, and by extension spend an equitable amount, is that you work and a SIL is a SAHM. Would you take that at face value, try to reason with her, or just ignore her?
I would ignore her. Because of all the things I've said already. Because I know that's not the real reason and because I know nothing is going to change, no matter what I do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
Because if I ignore her, my son continues to get nothing and is treated as less. And that makes me think I've failed as a mother.

Anyway, obviously, this matter takes up very little time and effort compared to the lift of working, raising a child, and living. But it sits in the back of my mind that I've let down my child because I'm letting him be treated by his grandparents this way.
I don't think you should feel like you've failed because you're "letting" him be treated a certain way. The only way you can prevent him from being treated this way is to cut her off entirely. All or nothing. I'm not sure that's really the better choice, but it's one only you can make. That's the only "letting" you can control. You can't make her be a more equitable grandparent. And what's more, your son might not know how unequitable it is or care about how unequitable it is if you don't continually obsess over it. I certainly don't know if my grandparents spent more time with me than the other grandkids--as a kid, how the heck would I know where grown ups spend their time when they're not with me, unless someone pointed it out to me? How would I know what presents the far away cousins got, unless someone told me? Seriously--I think you are going to give your son a complex if you continue down this path. And IMHO, that's a bigger failure-as-a-mother point than this ever could be. Don't let your drama rule his life.
post #144 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by poppan View Post
As you said--they are speaking in code. It's not primarily that your home is unwelcoming to them for XYZ reasons. It goes a lot deeper. To start, it probably has to do with their relationship with your husband, then continues to their relationship with you. I bet you they can't really truly articulate why they don't like spending time at your house/with your family. It's just not black and white, not easily fixed, and most of all, they're not interested in fixing it. You are talking to a wall because there's no interest on the other side and never will be. Whether she "ought to" have interest or not--she doesn't.

I know it hurts; I've told you a bit about my relationship with my mom and it's the same way. She and I just turned out to be very different people with very different values (like you and your MIL). I think we have both been deeply disappointing to the other. My mom still makes an effort with me and me with her, probably because we have a much more primal relationship, but I well know she much prefers to spend time with my sister. They like all the same things and are comfortable around each other, hold the same political viewpoints and values, and my sister has lived exactly the life my mom imagined for us. You know what hurt the most? When I went to my parents' home (really far away) as an adult, wandered into their bedroom, and realized that every single photo (out of 10-12) was of my sister. Oh there are photos of me... in all the public spaces like the hallways and living rooms. It felt like I was included in the public life but not in her heart.

Anyway, a really long convoluted story to say that it's just not as simple as you don't have a guest room or a comfortable bed or you aren't there to do the heavy lifting as far as childcare while she plays doting grandma. It goes deep. It has to do with relationships. And probably more the relationship with your husband than with you.

Yes. I'm hoping if you hear it often enough from enough people that this will sink in better.

I would ignore her. Because of all the things I've said already. Because I know that's not the real reason and because I know nothing is going to change, no matter what I do.


I don't think you should feel like you've failed because you're "letting" him be treated a certain way. The only way you can prevent him from being treated this way is to cut her off entirely. All or nothing. I'm not sure that's really the better choice, but it's one only you can make. That's the only "letting" you can control. You can't make her be a more equitable grandparent. And what's more, your son might not know how unequitable it is or care about how unequitable it is if you don't continually obsess over it. I certainly don't know if my grandparents spent more time with me than the other grandkids--as a kid, how the heck would I know where grown ups spend their time when they're not with me, unless someone pointed it out to me? How would I know what presents the far away cousins got, unless someone told me? Seriously--I think you are going to give your son a complex if you continue down this path. And IMHO, that's a bigger failure-as-a-mother point than this ever could be. Don't let your drama rule his life.
Thanks. Good post. I really appreciate it.
post #145 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by poppan View Post
When I went to my parents' home (really far away) as an adult, wandered into their bedroom, and realized that every single photo (out of 10-12) was of my sister. Oh there are photos of me... in all the public spaces like the hallways and living rooms. It felt like I was included in the public life but not in her heart.


I can relate somewhat to that. MIL and FIL have about 10 times more photos of their other grandkids around the house than of my son. That one I can let go. It's sort of obvious why, but I can let it go because it doesn't really mean anything to me how they decorate their home. Maybe SIL gives them 10 times as many photos...who knows (actually, she doesn't, because ironically most are photos that MIL and FIL print out themselves...so obvious).

We've overlooked those little kind of things many, many times for many, many years.

MIL is full of them. When she goes out to visit SIL and BIL and their kids, she dresses up. She wears jewelry. It really is like she's on vacation. When she comes to our house, she's in track pants or sweats. It's sort of comical. That doesn't bother me...just makes me giggle.

On some level, it might be that MIL and FIL are trying to impress? I don't know. Buy love? Hard to say.

On some level, I think they're impressed with the success and differences between their lives and BIL and SIL. Many times FIL in law has remarked how everything is very suburban and new development where BIL and SIL live and how he loves it there. Maybe FIL and MIL are trying to fit in. Who knows.

Whatever it is, there are plenty of subtle and not-so-subtle signals that they are interested in them and not interested in us.
post #146 of 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post


I'm intensely upset for you about this. I feel fire in my chest thinking about how wrong it is for any new mother attempting to breastfeed to be called a cow. How crude. How insensitive. How (and I'm sorry to say this because she is your mother...but) ignorant.
Oh yes. My mom is all of those things, and I think I can even say that objectively. What really upset me was not so much the cow part, as the follow up of "what would your husband think if he saw you". Because my mom manages to push all my buttons and I hated pumping and I did feel like a cow (not in making milk but in pumping it), and I hid in my room to pump because I didn't want anyone to see me. So naturally she walks in on me without knocking, and makes the exact comment I felt most sensitive about. What helped was when I told my husband and he was so deeply angry for me and how supportive he was of breastfeeding.

Sorry for going totally off topic. I never did fully understand why she was soooo extremely negative on breastfeeding and soooo pro formula. It took a lot of work for me to breastfeed two preemies and I really think she took my determination to do it (and "irrationally" anti-formula stance) as a rebuke on her own choices. That's my only explanation. I've tried to put it all out of my mind--that and all the rest of the bitter pills over the years--and I well know I am not blameless either, that it has gone both ways, that I have hurt her as much as she has hurt me. Your thread has actually really helped me remember and process many of these things that I've been sweeping under the rug, and get some perspective on it and on family in general. So thank you for that.
post #147 of 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
When she goes out to visit SIL and BIL and their kids, she dresses up. She wears jewelry. It really is like she's on vacation.
Some pages back someone suggested that your parents-in-law were going to SIL's house for vacation. I actually thought it rang true. I have a friend whose in-laws would show up every other month. They were retired and lived all the way across the country. I really think they were going there as a cheap vacation, although I'm sure they wanted to see friend's husband (their son) too. Friend had a pool, lived in southern California in warm weather, had a widescreen TV that her FIL would plant himself in front of and play very loudly, separate guest room, friend cleaned up after them (at first)... pretty good vacation right?

My friend always thought her in-laws were a bit loud and obnoxious and just... from a different class background. Maybe I'm projecting too much but it sounds so similar to your SIL/BIL's situation where the kids ended up being really successful in life, much more so than the parents. If your in-laws didn't give SIL a chance to get away from the kids for a few days, I bet they wouldn't be welcome to visit at all!
post #148 of 186
I see a lot of familiar things in this thread, I am glad I am not alone It is actually DH that is more annoyed with it, so over time I came up with explanations to make sense of it for him (and for me).
PIL have much more common interests with BIL/SIL. BIL/SIL also need more help (BIL has health issues and SIL also some issues herself), we have been more independent over the years not asking much help from them before we had kids. SIL has a more bossy character compared to DH, PIL don't say no very easily to her. And I think it is also a cycle, once they see the other grandkids more often they are also more attached to them. Out of sight out of the heart is one of the sayings we have in our language.
But it is hard, because my kids are innocent and I want them to feel equally treated.

I am curious what it will be like to be a grandparent. I hope I will be one someday. And I will try my very best to treat all my DIL/SIL/grandchildren equal

Carma
post #149 of 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post


The genesis of this thread!!!! That [above] conversation is what started this! I asked my MIL point blank on the phone why they can't visit my son the same way they visit the other grandchildren (generally, within the same range).

And she replied, well you work, and SIL doesn't.

To which I replied SIL might disagree with that.

To which MIL responded "well, I mean, around the house and stuff. But you work out of the home a lot. You're not a stay-at-home mom."
I totally get that - I didn't mean to restate the obvious. I'm just wondering -- if you decided to pursue this (and perhaps you shouldn't; lolar2's post was point-blank brilliant), what would happen if you pursued it to a more logical conclusion with her?

You: Why don't you come to see us...
MIL: Because you work; you're not a SAHM.
You: But that doesn't mean (your child) doesn't want to see you. He would love to see you and spend time with you.
MIL: ((But You Work refrain))
You: (Your son) would love to go swimming with you and read books. You can come to see us, even if I am working.
MIL: ????


...I am just confused because it simply doesn't make *sense* that MIL doesn't want to come because you work.



However, all that being said, I'm not sure I would totally pursue a relationship between your son and those grandparents. I wouldn't stop them from coming, but I wouldn't beg them. If they aren't that interested or vested in your son's life, he'll figure that out sooner or later. Their loss.
post #150 of 186
[QUOTE]Sure he is - as long as you think the trade off of his grandparents being offended to the point that they don't want to visit you was worth it.


I wonder if this is the case - that your in laws do not feel appreciated or welcome. My coworker is nearly 70. She has 2 sets of grandchildren that live within 10 minutes of each other. She flies out often, but while one set of parents are pretty open to her planned activities, the others have a very different lifestyle and pretty much decline all of her suggestions. She is older so she doesn't feel comfortable doing a lot of their outdoorsy stuff since she can't keep up and just doesn't enjoy it. So basically she spends most of the visit with grandchildren A (which she enjoys), but often complains that the other parents are purposely blocking her relationship with grandchildren B.

Also, does your MIL have health issues. My coworker also complains about the sleep arrangements in B's house (a couch in her case) which hurts her back so again, by default, she ends up spending most nights with A.
post #151 of 186
My parents live nearby, and I facilitate the relationship with their grandparents. They aren't likely to go out and do something, or even come over. They aren't the 'we'll babysit for the night while you go out' sort. In fact, they watched my daughter when ds1 was born, and they watched both my daughter and ds 1 when ds 2 was born- both for a day. Those are the only times they have watched them.

Once in a while I can coax them into coming over for dinner, but not usually... sooo... we go over there. It works well for us to get together for coffee with the kids- on the grandparent's territory. They are more comfortable at home than they are here, and that's ok. Sometimes frustrating, but we make it work.

Would it be possible for you to foster more grandparent time if you made the effort to go visit them?
post #152 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by poppan View Post
What really upset me was not so much the cow part, as the follow up of "what would your husband think if he saw you".

Your thread has actually really helped me remember and process many of these things that I've been sweeping under the rug, and get some perspective on it and on family in general. So thank you for that.
again.

Yeah, the "what would your husband" part bugs me, too. What would a husband think? Gosh, that I'm feeding our child? That my breasts are producing this milk naturally and I've got to pump/nurse to get some relief. That I'm saving uber cash by not buying formula??

Luckily DH was never against breastfeeding. He'd get a bit shy about it in public, but he's sort of introverted and has a very boxed comfort zone about everything so I think it was just par for the course. When we got to the two year point for BFing, he had a bit of a raised eyebrow, and thought it was time to wean, but he never felt negatively about pumping or breastfeeding. That's what breasts are for! Biologically, they aren't really for husbands.
post #153 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by confustication View Post
Would it be possible for you to foster more grandparent time if you made the effort to go visit them?
Oh, yes. Absolutely. We could make an effort and go visit them on their turf. It's a couple of hours away.

It doesn't explain why they can spend so much time traveling to fly across the country for a week to visit the other side of the family.



And it's not like I can take 4 weeks off from work during the year to go and visit my inlaws with my son.

But yes we could visit them.
post #154 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulfaith View Post
I totally get that - I didn't mean to restate the obvious. I'm just wondering -- if you decided to pursue this (and perhaps you shouldn't; lolar2's post was point-blank brilliant), what would happen if you pursued it to a more logical conclusion with her?

You: Why don't you come to see us...
MIL: Because you work; you're not a SAHM.
You: But that doesn't mean (your child) doesn't want to see you. He would love to see you and spend time with you.
MIL: ((But You Work refrain))
You: (Your son) would love to go swimming with you and read books. You can come to see us, even if I am working.
MIL: ????


...I am just confused because it simply doesn't make *sense* that MIL doesn't want to come because you work.



However, all that being said, I'm not sure I would totally pursue a relationship between your son and those grandparents. I wouldn't stop them from coming, but I wouldn't beg them. If they aren't that interested or vested in your son's life, he'll figure that out sooner or later. Their loss.
Exactly. Doesn't make sense. She's either talking in code or making things up completely at random.

Incidentally, I've had the above exchange with MIL and she hung up on me.
post #155 of 186
Thread Starter 
[QUOTE=Areia;15682375]
Quote:
Also, does your MIL have health issues.
No. No health issues. She's very healthy and not that old. She exercises regularly and she is in good health as far as I know. She has no illnesses or chronic conditions.

Also, she travels by plane at least 4 times a year for a week each time to go and visit the other family. In order to get to the airport, she has to drive almost as far as she does to come and visit us. Just to get to the airport. She usually drives the night before her flight and stays in a hotel.

Also, there are hotels in the city I live in. MIL could stay in a hotel and not at our house. There are ways around this, if she really wanted to find ways.
post #156 of 186
Thread Starter 
[QUOTE=Carma;15682338]we have been more independent over the years not asking much help from them before we had kids. SIL has a more bossy character compared to DH, PIL don't say no very easily to her. And I think it is also a cycle, once they see the other grandkids more often they are also more attached to them. Out of sight out of the heart is one of the sayings we have in our language.
But it is hard, because my kids are innocent and I want them to feel equally treated.[QUOTE]

Yes!

My BIL is much more comfortable asking the inlaws for things, I believe. There is a long history.

Also, it is very much a cycle now, very routine. Once they see the other grandkids and get into a cycle - routine - of visiting every 3 months for a week, the inlaws are very uninclined to change. They aren't really the type of people who change much. Once they have a history or pattern, they stick with it.

Out of sight, out of mind/heart is very much the deal here. That's what DH says. Our little boy is out of sight/out of mind.

Like I said, once an entire year lapsed where Grandpa didn't come to visit at all. And they didn't even seem away of that. They thought nothing of saying, "And do you know how long it took to put together the play equipment? Four days! What a funny story!"

Yeah, what a funny story indeed for them to share with us. They had gone out to visit the other kids for another week and purchased a large item for them that took Grandpa four days to put together at their house.

Well, four days was more time than Grandpa had spend with our little boy ALL YEAR!

Out of sight, out of mind.
post #157 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by poppan View Post
Some pages back someone suggested that your parents-in-law were going to SIL's house for vacation. I actually thought it rang true. I have a friend whose in-laws would show up every other month. They were retired and lived all the way across the country. I really think they were going there as a cheap vacation, although I'm sure they wanted to see friend's husband (their son) too. Friend had a pool, lived in southern California in warm weather, had a widescreen TV that her FIL would plant himself in front of and play very loudly, separate guest room, friend cleaned up after them (at first)... pretty good vacation right?
I think the vacation factor is relevant and not to be dismissed.

My inlaws have raved (almost swooned) over BIL's inground pool. They love it. Also BIL lives in a very warm climate and my inlaws LOVE that. Love it. They love grilling out and ordering in. They dress up and MIL wears jewelry. It's time to dress up and vacation. I think when my inlaws are on vacation they sort of have an open pocketbook mentality, too. Sure! Yeah, let's! We're on vacation, after all.

In some ways, I feel a little sorry for my SIL. I mean, in her place I might be posting Help! I think my inlaws are more interested in my pool than my kids! They come down, buy a cooler full of beer and alcohol, and sit out by the pool for a week.

But I know that she appreciates all the babysitting they do for them and all the things they buy them. She has stated she is happy with the amount of time they spend with her kids...four weeks a year visiting them and then whatever on top of that they visit the inlaws.

Whereas when they do come together for the rare visit here, it's always really short and Grandpa, mostly, but both Grandpa and Grandpa are always like "gotta get home before dark. Gotta mow the lawn. Gotta go shovel the snow. Gotta get this home improvement project done. Gotta do this, gotta do that."
post #158 of 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
...We don't own a lot of furniture. We got rid of a worn, sagging love seat/couch that was really too short about a year ago and I haven't replaced it due to finances and instability with DH. What am I going to do? Buy a new couch and then try to sell my house and move into an apartment? Now isn't the time to buy furniture.

But MIL mentions the missing couch...a lot. We have chairs. No couch. Sorry.
MIL also mentioned to my DH she doesn't like visiting because our home isn't homey. She noted the lack of pictures on the walls and a few storage boxes. She doesn't like it.

We have a very small tv by American standards. MIL also has pointed this out. We have a small, older 19 inch tv for the main, living room tv. I shut it in a cabinet. I don't think tv is important and I never want it to be the centerpiece of my living room, you know? With all furniture oriented around the tv? Nope. Not my style.

We also do not have a guest bedroom. And we have no plans to add one soon. When MIL comes, she uses an inflatable mattress. I don't see a problem with that.

By contrast, MIL and FIL have a giant television with all furniture oriented towards it. BIL does, too. MIL and FIL love the giant flat screen tv. It's something understand, as DH has said. They don't get a 19 inch tv. They think it's sort of crazy.

MIL and FIL love BIL's in ground pool. He lives in a warmer climate where it makes sense to have a pool, I guess. I on the other hand am an environmentalist and I probably would not have a personal play pool for water conservation reasons and money pit reasons. I like the public pool and splash park (free!). But MIL and FIL love in ground pools.

We don't have a grill. We don't grill a lot of food. I'm vegetarian and I don't buy meat for the house. MIL and FIL love to grill and to see a vegetarian meal as missing the main course. So, of course they love the grill BIL has and have spoken of it fondly.

Let's see...I'm sure there are other things.

Yes, we definitely have different lifestyles. FIL smokes and I don't allow smoking in my house. I have a child with asthma. My own dad smokes and when he visits, I treat him the same as I treat my FIL, but FIL gets offended and sullen while my dad takes it in stride. My son gets on both my dad and FIL to stop smoking because it's bad for your health. My dad responds by saying, "hey, kid, good job, maybe you'll save me money if I quit!" FIL gets mightily offended and thinks I'm feeding my kid lines.

But still to hear MIL say she can't visit because I'm not a SAHM and SIL is just is crazy!! That's not the real reason!
ETA: I haven't read the whole thread yet....so this may have already been mentioned or addressed.

I can see her point, honestly. When some people get to a certain age and go visiting family, they want to be somewhere that feels like home to them. Or a vacation. I have a few friends who do NOT have "homey" homes and while I love those friends, I hate visiting them in their homes. I am always uncomfortable, on edge and feel out of place.

If your mother in law finds nothing comforting in your home - no sofa, no TV, no bed, no personal space, no foods she likes, etc....then that's probably why she only visits a few hours at a time. Certainly, she could visit a few hours at a time more often than just a few times a year, but I can see why there is no lengthy stay. It's not comfortable for her.

That's probably also why she babysits the other grandkids while your SIL and BIL spend a weekend away, because it's comfortable for her in their home. She can kick up her feet by the pool, enjoy her own bathroom and private space, eat the foods she likes on a grill, her DH can smoke to his heart's content, watch tv on the big screen , etc.... and it makes babysitting more enjoyable.

I know this makes me sound shallow as though comfort overrides family and the people you are spending time with, but comfort is a big part of a vacation or an extended stay. If you're visiting someone and you never feel "comfy" the visit really is not enjoyable in the least, ESP if you work out of the home and all day she'd be "stuck" in the "uncomfy", "uninviting" home.
post #159 of 186
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anastasiya View Post
ETA: I haven't read the whole thread yet....so this may have already been mentioned or addressed.

I can see her point, honestly. When some people get to a certain age and go visiting family, they want to be somewhere that feels like home to them. Or a vacation. I have a few friends who do NOT have "homey" homes and while I love those friends, I hate visiting them in their homes. I am always uncomfortable, on edge and feel out of place.

If your mother in law finds nothing comforting in your home - no sofa, no TV, no bed, no personal space, no foods she likes, etc....then that's probably why she only visits a few hours at a time. Certainly, she could visit a few hours at a time more often than just a few times a year, but I can see why there is no lengthy stay. It's not comfortable for her.

That's probably also why she babysits the other grandkids while your SIL and BIL spend a weekend away, because it's comfortable for her in their home. She can kick up her feet by the pool, enjoy her own bathroom and private space, eat the foods she likes on a grill, her DH can smoke to his heart's content, watch tv on the big screen , etc.... and it makes babysitting more enjoyable.

I know this makes me sound shallow as though comfort overrides family and the people you are spending time with, but comfort is a big part of a vacation or an extended stay. If you're visiting someone and you never feel "comfy" the visit really is not enjoyable in the least, ESP if you work out of the home and all day she'd be "stuck" in the "uncomfy", "uninviting" home.
Thanks for the comment.

I think the solution is easy for my MIL: hotel. Hotel, hotel, hotel. They have some nice ones in my city. For the price she pays for airfare every year, she can surely afford a hotel.

Otherwise...I have this to say, which might not be that popular an idea, but here goes...

There is to a small extent philosophy at play here, but to a larger extent it is finances with reference to furnishings.

OK, so MIL doesn't like that we lack a couch (at the moment), a guest bed, a grill, a pool, what have you.

I guess it really hurts my heart that she chooses to not visit her lovely grandchild because of this. Shallow, yes. I understand the comfort point, but to me that is shallow nonetheless.

And, on top of that, it frustrates me, I guess, because it's more a financial issue. If I had the money, and time, and setting/environment, would I go out and attain a couch to MIL's liking? Yes. A guest bedroom? Sure. A larger tv? No, probably not (the philosophy part comes into play here), but maybe if it drew her to come more often.

Outside of installing an inground pool, I probably would acquire the other things if I had the money and if it would make a shred of difference and MIL would then visit her grandchild.

The frustrating thing is that SIL is a SAHM, right? Her husband - my MIL's son - makes the money and provides all this "stuff" that MIL seems to be drawn to.

So maybe MIL should take a look at DH. Does she love him? Does she love his son? Enough to overlook the fact that DH can't afford these things for his family?

I guess, on a very different plane, it feels like MIL is making judgements against us (not to visit) because of things her son (and I, too) can't provide. At least right now.

Why then would she spend more money on the family that is fairing better financially?

If the couch, whatever is SUCH an issue, then be part of the solution, not make the problem worse.



I mean, no, it's not her responsibility. But if she's going to snipe about it...

And, finally, I don't like that she makes bogus and lame excuses like "your work and SIL doesn't so we can't visit you and we can visit them."

I was just thinking about this, and came back to edit because I think perhaps my MIL's comment is to push the blame on me rather than having to take a hard look at her son, perhaps, and what he's not able to do. She wouldn't/couldn't come out and say something against her son. So, she makes up other lame excuses that don't really make a lot of sense.
post #160 of 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
And, on top of that, it frustrates me, I guess, because it's more a financial issue. If I had the money, and time, and setting/environment, would I go out and attain a couch to MIL's liking? Yes. A guest bedroom? Sure. A larger tv? No, probably not (the philosophy part comes into play here), but maybe if it drew her to come more often.

Outside of installing an inground pool, I probably would acquire the other things if I had the money and if it would make a shred of difference and MIL would then visit her grandchild.

The frustrating thing is that SIL is a SAHM, right? Her husband - my MIL's son - makes the money and provides all this "stuff" that MIL seems to be drawn to.

So maybe MIL should take a look at DH. Does she love him? Does she love his son? Enough to overlook the fact that DH can't afford these things for his family?

I guess, on a very different plane, it feels like MIL is making judgements against us (not to visit) because of things her son (and I, too) can't provide. At least right now.

Why then would she spend more money on the family that is fairing better financially?

If the couch, whatever is SUCH an issue, then be part of the solution, not make the problem worse.



I mean, no, it's not her responsibility. But if she's going to snipe about it...

And, finally, I don't like that she makes bogus and lame excuses like "your work and SIL doesn't so we can't visit you and we can visit them."

I was just thinking about this, and came back to edit because I think perhaps my MIL's comment is to push the blame on me rather than having to take a hard look at her son, perhaps, and what he's not able to do. She wouldn't/couldn't come out and say something against her son. So, she makes up other lame excuses that don't really make a lot of sense.
I can't help picking up that really for you this is all coming down to money more than anything else. You resent that your Dh does not earn enough for you to stay at home. You resent that your SIL can stay at home. You resent that your inlaws don't somehow contribute enough to your family for you to stay at home.

And then, your MIL makes the comment about visiting your SIL more because she stays at home, and it's like throwing a match into a barrell of oil that's already been simmering and seething for years....
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