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Asian IL's disliking white DIL's - Page 3

post #41 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
I'm glad that in your case your husband's grandparents came to accept you and love you. As you said, they probably are great people. Just curious -- Were they ever rude to you in person in the beginning? Your husbands parents -- how did they accept you? Did they accept you right away, or did it take awhile? How did they react to the engagement?
My husband's grandparents were never rude to me, they were very polite but tentative in the beginning. My husband's parents and his entire family pretty much welcomed and embraced me with open arms because my husband's happiness was foremost in there mind so whoever made him happy, made them happy. I am the first non-caucasian and non-catholic to marry into that family and luckily it has not been an issue. Most of his extended family have been wonderful as well and I have been very blessed.

A very big for you AutumnWind, I am so sorry that you fell into the other category of having terrible IL's who inspite of trying your best with them it's just not good enough. It is so sad that they are so blinded that they are missing out on a wonderful, loving relationship. Kudos to you for encouraging a relationship between your children and them, even though your MIL and SIL do not deserve it. I don't think I would be so patient myself, especially if they tried to manipulate my children.

I have an Aunt who sounds just like your MIL and SIL and if they are anything like my Aunt it's not so much about cultural differences as it's simply about pettiness and jealousy.

My widowed Aunt has only one son and he lives in another state probably to be far away from her. When he started dating a girl and my Aunt few out to meet her (she’s Caucasian) I knew before she even left that she wasn’t even going to give this girl a chance. It seemed like no matter what she was going to find a reason to reject this girl for whatever reason she could dig up and all reasons were petty and hidden behind a manipulative veil of concern for her son. Last year my cousin brought his girlfriend to our family reunion and my Aunt’s rudeness and dislike for her was so barely disguised that we all took notice (and tried to make up for it, because we all adore her and clearly could see my cousin’s happiness). A few of my family members even tried to talk to my Aunt very gently about it, but it just made her hate her son’s girlfriend even more. Now that my cousin and his girlfriend want to marry, my Aunt is playing little manipulative games, basically a power play. But luckily my cousin isn’t the type to respond to it, but unfortunately he’s not the type to call her out on it either. His way of dealing with the situation is seeing/talking to her as little as possible and living far away.

I imagine my Aunt would probably reject any woman my cousin brought to meet her Chinese or not. She’d probably have some different excuses, because she tried to manipulate me with my DH when we were engaged. She’d tried to manipulate me in little ways, telling me that her friends thought my DH wasn’t handsome/rich/tall/educated enough and thought that I could do better. I was flabbergasted and I couldn’t very well respond because the way she did it was indirect so I couldn’t accuse her of anything because it was her friends that said it. I just shrugged it off and told her I was happy with my choice and that her friends don’t know my DH like I do and that he’s was the best of the best of men.

I was very pissed though because when my Uncle died (I’m the only one who lives by my Aunt, the rest of my family is on the West Coast) my DH helped clean, organize and move my Aunt out of her house. My DH busted his butt to help her out (because of me) and she didn't appreciate any of it. My DH is also a handy guy that when something goes wrong at her house we get called so he can fix it. It got to the point that I got irritated and simply didn't want my DH used like that so that I’d just deflect her calls and come up with excuses that he couldn't help her out.

We haven't written her off either, but boy would I like to sometimes because she can be a real jerk about stuff. But we very rarely see her and most times I'll just go see her without him.

I would imagine that your MIL and SIL would be hell on wheels for a Korean DIL because like you said they are just difficult people and probably thrive on games like this. The other sad thing is because you're not Korean with Korean family to back you up, they probably feel like they can get away with a lot more. Hopefully your DH has some Korean family members who are kind and nice.
post #42 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoingDoing:Julie View Post
SOOOO basicly my advice to you is cling to the loving parts of your familys. Dont pay much mind to those that refuse to love or like you. And make the best of it! :-)
I wholeheartedly agree!
post #43 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelachristin View Post
Thanks AutumnWind. It is really tough. Like I said, I don't know how much is cultural and how much is that she's just a rotten, miserable person. When I ask DH why he persists in catering to her and helping her when we ourselves can't make ends meet, he tells me "it's my culture, you don't understand," so maybe that is a component of it that some Filipino woman or someone else married to a Filipino man could help with. He trys to lead me to believe that in his culture the sons are supposed to take care of their mom, no matter what.

The real killer part is that she was a rotten mom to them growing up. Just really cold and distant. She spanked, and once she said to me, I kid you not, "Once, when I was beating Anthony (that's DH)..." And she never did normal things like read them stories, she didn't do Christmas, just took them to the store around Christmas time and told them "pick out a toy." I don't know. I really just...hate her, honestly. It is so hard for me to be around her because I just despise her. We are planning to move back to California soon and it can't come quick enough. I really want my DS away from her. I don't want her malevolent influence in his life. I know she loves him in her own demented way and I would never hurt DH by saying she can't see him since we live in the same city as her, but we NEED to be gone. I just don't want her around him. I acutally have another thread about her behavior with him here:
http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=957120

: Holy Cow angelachristin. Thank goodness you are moving far away, I would say RUN, RUN, RUN as far as you can!!!

Maybe you could try to encourage your DH to try what grumpybear suggested by providing her the basics, because I don't care what culture you are no culture teaches you to enable someone's bad habits.

I would be also seriously concerned about her using your DH's name without his permission and DH should not be allowing her to do that without discussing with you because if you're both legally married then everything (credit/taxes/finances) is pretty much tied together and you both are legally liable so it can and will bite you BIG TIME.

If any one thing you should put your foot down on (I really don't see any cultural angled argument for this) this would be it because it could directly affect you.

Good luck!

He should also put in a fraud alert with all three credit reporting agencies
post #44 of 52
angelachristin -- it's strange that she doesn't give gifts. Because, it's my impression that in most Asian cultures, gift giving is such an important part of the culture. It permeates family relationships, business relationships, church relationships, neighbors, etc...... My MIL is Korean, and we bring her a "gift" every time we come to her house, which is like every 2 months or so. After trying a lot of different gifts like flowers, candy, and that sort of thing - we settled on fruit because that's what she loves the most. Fruits and nuts. We stop at the grocery store near her house just before we get there, and we go in and get a nice sized bag full of different kinds of yummy fruits and if nuts are in season (around holidays) we'll get those, too and she roasts them in her toaster oven.

Anyway, I digress. It's just strange that she doesn't give gifts.

As for the money thing & borrowing -- in Korean culture (or Korean American culture, I guess, in my dh's case) , it's customary for the son, or the oldest (or ONLY son in our case) to give his parents 5-10% of his income per month. We probably give that much. HOWEVER -- here's how it works: we "give" it to her, but then she "gives" it back!!! Whenever we need to buy something big like a vehicle, she "gives" us the money. Then we start "paying her back". (???) It all works out, though. We eventually get it back. Now, with the way she and SIL treat me, I would of course NEVER do this money thing with her. I would rather put it in the bank and EARN INTEREST than to give it to her and have her give us the same amount back so that she feels like she's giving it to us and feels that she has a say in the decision of which car, etc... We don't "need" to borrow it from her -- we could easily buy it ourselves and just have a car payment. But my dh doesn't want to pay interest, understandably, so we do this hot potato thing with the money with MIL. Anyway, it's better than her living with us because that would be a huge strain on our marriage.

(side note -- when she is very old and cannot live alone, AND cannot cause problems in my marriage anymore, she will of course live with us. i would never put her in a nursing home. i'm just saying, she would have to be feeble and not able to reek havok on my life. in the meantime, we just take care of her from afar.)
post #45 of 52
Oh and angelachristin -- the fact that your MIL is using your dh's name and his brother's name for businesses, that's so scarey. YIKES. I really think this lady needs to be reigned in. Your dh has more pull with her than he thinks. All he has to do is set some limits. He can do it in a culturally acceptable way. I mean, he can say whatever he needs to say. But she's not going to "disown him" or anything. Who would take her to the casino? Sons do have A LOT OF PULL with their mothers. They are afraid to stand up to them because they've never HAD to till they were married. But he just needs to learn to do it in a way that's his style. If not, then it falls on you, and you'll be the bad guy. Oh well. I'm the bad guy with my ILs. I don't talk to them about money because they don't abuse us that way with money. But if they did, I would have to. I mean, my MIL is not gonna write off her son. It's not in her best interest. And your MIL is not gonna write of her son, either.
post #46 of 52
Pokeyrin -- yes, my MIL and SIL sound like your aunt. But my MIL and SIL dot it in an indirect, underhanded way, that makes things a little ambiguous in front of my dh. And, they do it with looks, like looks of disgust when they look me up and down - what I'm wearing, my body, etc., (i'm overweight). They do it with sneering smiles about cooking, and other stuff. SIL is more brave about it, and more obnoxious. She is threatened by me (for what reason??? i'm not gonna take her mother away -- i don't know why she feels this way..) and she makes sure that the relationship between MIL and I stays bad. When she's around, MIL is much worse toward me.

SIL does have one son. When he gets married, I wonder how she'll react. She may be okay - she's married to a white guy herself. I don't know. I don't think her husband would allow her to be mean to a DIL. He wouldn't put up with that, so she wouldn't get away with it in front of him, at least.

Anyway, MIL and SIL are the ONLY FAMILY MY DH HAS. He was young when he came here and doesn't know his relatives anymore in Korea. So they are it. He is protective of them and feels that I should suck it up because we don't see them much. I'm not good at sucking it up and he knew that when he married me. So, we just handle it by not seeing them much. It really is their loss, because I am a big family person. If they had been loving toward me and accepting, even after YEARS, I would've had a good relationship with them. I think the problem is, they want to have a KOREAN relationship with me. They want to treat me however, and then have me just take it because they are older. And I can't do that, unfortunately.
post #47 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
Pokeyrin -- yes, my MIL and SIL sound like your aunt. But my MIL and SIL dot it in an indirect, underhanded way, that makes things a little ambiguous in front of my dh. And, they do it with looks, like looks of disgust when they look me up and down - what I'm wearing, my body, etc., (i'm overweight). They do it with sneering smiles about cooking, and other stuff. SIL is more brave about it, and more obnoxious. She is threatened by me (for what reason??? i'm not gonna take her mother away -- i don't know why she feels this way..) and she makes sure that the relationship between MIL and I stays bad. When she's around, MIL is much worse toward me.

SIL does have one son. When he gets married, I wonder how she'll react. She may be okay - she's married to a white guy herself. I don't know. I don't think her husband would allow her to be mean to a DIL. He wouldn't put up with that, so she wouldn't get away with it in front of him, at least.

Anyway, MIL and SIL are the ONLY FAMILY MY DH HAS. He was young when he came here and doesn't know his relatives anymore in Korea. So they are it. He is protective of them and feels that I should suck it up because we don't see them much. I'm not good at sucking it up and he knew that when he married me. So, we just handle it by not seeing them much. It really is their loss, because I am a big family person. If they had been loving toward me and accepting, even after YEARS, I would've had a good relationship with them. I think the problem is, they want to have a KOREAN relationship with me. They want to treat me however, and then have me just take it because they are older. And I can't do that, unfortunately.
Egads! It's like a really bad Asian soap opera. Seriously.

When I was younger I was addicted to Chinese and Korean soap operas (I'm pretty familiar with Korean culture, my father's 2nd wife was Korean and I grew up with her. I also have two younger half-Chinese/half-Korean brothers and two of my best-friends are Korean).

I just remember these dramatic storylines revolved around the relationships between DIL and husband's family. The men were always clueless and the DIL basically had to suffer under a tyrannical/overly critical MIL and SIL's who were in cahoots with the MIL. Basically in the super olden days as a female you were married off into your husband's family and essentially became their property.

Your MIL and SIL sound like a piece of work and it sounds like they have what I call the "asian alpha female" syndrome. The thing in Chinese and Korean culture is power and respect is all based on age (whoever is older) and not necessarily on a person's character. The younger generation is taught to respect the older generation and we're taught to "suck it up" and we can never criticize because that's not our place to do so.

My Aunt pulls the same sneaky crap on me occasionally, because she's one of those serious, "I need to be alpha female" cases. I just had my shower this past weekend and I wore a form fitting dress that showed off my belly.

Well dear Aunt stood next to me and gave me one of those sneering up and down looks and says to me, "When I was pregnant with your cousin, your Grandmother made this clever dress for me and no one could tell I was pregnant. They just thought I gained a little weight." And ended with a look at my bulging belly and an eye roll.

I so wanted to tell her off, but if I did my entire family would be up in arms even if I was in the right and she in the wrong. So I just smiled sweetly at her and said, "Well back then you had to hide it, nowadays it's popular to show it off" and I walked away.

To this day I hate the fact that I just can't tell my Aunt off or tell her how horrible she is treating my cousin's girlfriend and how unfair she is. Something in the damned culture has been ingrained me to suck it in and up. But I do try to find creative ways to deal with her.

IMHO I just don't think it's fair that your DH asks you to suck it up, but if that's probably what he grew up with that's what he knows to do. Hopefully he realizes that it's unfair for him to ask you (because he knows you're not like that and didn't grow up that way) and that he should make it up or better for you.

My DH has to put up with my Aunt occasionally, but I make sure that I shield him from as much of her craziness as possible because it's just not fair for me to expect him to deal with it "just because".
post #48 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
I would rather put it in the bank and EARN INTEREST than to give it to her and have her give us the same amount back so that she feels like she's giving it to us and feels that she has a say in the decision of which car, etc....
Ooh this is all about control. There is never free money from elders without them giving you what appears to be "advice", but it's really just them telling you what they want you to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
(side note -- when she is very old and cannot live alone, AND cannot cause problems in my marriage anymore, she will of course live with us. i would never put her in a nursing home. i'm just saying, she would have to be feeble and not able to reek havok on my life. in the meantime, we just take care of her from afar.)
You are very, very brave and kind AutumnWind to even keep an open mind about your MIL moving in. I hate to sound cold about this, but I'd find a way to keep them out of my house in anyway.

Once they are in your home even if they are feeble and helpless it always has the potential to become a nightmare especially if they can open their mouth. At that point they have the "sympathy" trump card and you'll always be on the losing end after that. Because they will be allowed to get away with murder because they are old, feeble and in their last days and they'll know how to guilt trip their own child. I've known a few marriages that have been irreparably damaged after the IL moved in.
post #49 of 52
Yes, I do agree that our marriage would be completely strained if MIL moved in. I'm not sure we could get thru it. MIL and FIL wanted to move in when we first got married (!!!!!) and I said no. Then FIL passed on, and I know MIL would like to move in for part of the year at least. I suspect what might happen is, when the time comes, MIL might say she wants to live with SIL, so that my dh can save face. Since, culturally it should be dh that takes her in (by culturally, i mean culturally in korea 1976! ......now my understanding is that in modern korea the daughter sometimes takes care of the ageing mom. it makes sense. mother and daughter relationships in general are easier than MIL and DIL relationships. generally, i mean.).

I'm holding out for as long as I can. MIL is in good shape. She walks every day, she swims, she goes to church meetings @ the Korean church, goes to dinner at friends' houses, is very involved with her Korean community in her town. So, my perception right now is that she doesn't need to live with us. She has a senior apartment.

I can totally relate to your assessment of the Alpha Female Syndrome. My MIL and SIL have that. Moreso my SIL, though. She has it big time. I think if she and I were around each other much, things would get explosive. I think she knows that. She doesn't like to come here to my house, because it's my space and she doesn't feel comfortable here.

Also, my MIL and SIL do NOT like to be around my side of the family. They do everything they can to avoid it. They do not like to be surrounded by people who love me. I've noticed this over the past decade.
post #50 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnWind View Post
Yes, I do agree that our marriage would be completely strained if MIL moved in. I'm not sure we could get thru it. MIL and FIL wanted to move in when we first got married (!!!!!) and I said no. Then FIL passed on, and I know MIL would like to move in for part of the year at least. I suspect what might happen is, when the time comes, MIL might say she wants to live with SIL, so that my dh can save face. Since, culturally it should be dh that takes her in (by culturally, i mean culturally in korea 1976! ......now my understanding is that in modern korea the daughter sometimes takes care of the ageing mom. it makes sense. mother and daughter relationships in general are easier than MIL and DIL relationships. generally, i mean.).

I'm holding out for as long as I can. MIL is in good shape. She walks every day, she swims, she goes to church meetings @ the Korean church, goes to dinner at friends' houses, is very involved with her Korean community in her town. So, my perception right now is that she doesn't need to live with us. She has a senior apartment.

I can totally relate to your assessment of the Alpha Female Syndrome. My MIL and SIL have that. Moreso my SIL, though. She has it big time. I think if she and I were around each other much, things would get explosive. I think she knows that. She doesn't like to come here to my house, because it's my space and she doesn't feel comfortable here.

Also, my MIL and SIL do NOT like to be around my side of the family. They do everything they can to avoid it. They do not like to be surrounded by people who love me. I've noticed this over the past decade.
My MIL definitely has the Alpha Female Syndrome too. She ALWAYS comes over when my family is in town, though. I was as close as I have ever been to physically harming her the day my son came home from the hospital.

Now, you have to remember, we live in Las Vegas, and at that time, we lived nearly next door to MIL. The rest of MY family lives on the east coast. My mom and grandmother had come out for DS's birth. They came the day before his due date and were staying 2 weeks. Well, he was 4 days late, and then he was kept in the NICU for a full week (for no reason, but that is another post somewhere). He came home the day that my mom and grandmother had to fly back east. He came home about noon, and their flight was in the evening. You would think MIL could have stayed away and let my family have some time with him, let us try, although it wouldn't even be able to come close, to do all the things with him that we had hoped to do together the 3 of us during that week that he was instead kept in the NICU...like giving him his first bath...and just letting them hold him and try to enjoy him for the brief time they had. But no. He wasn't home an hour before YOU KNOW WHO is banging on the door. I mean, she has the whole rest of her life with him (or so she thinks anyway, she doesn't know we are planning to move). But she just couldn't let my mom and grandmother have that one day. She didn't stay all day...I made it pretty clear that she was unwelcome. But just that she even showed up at all. ANd she does it to this day. My family gets to visit once or maybe twice a year. she sees him at least once a week. but can she stay away when they are here and let them enjoy him? NOOOOOOOOO. She has to come in and act like she's the big know it all, the authority on my son. And it's hard cuz he knows her and goes to her, and I'm sure it must hurt my mom to see that when it always takes him a while to warm up to her because he hasn't seen her in months and months, KWIM? Ooh just thinking about it makes me want to strangle her.
post #51 of 52
Well - I hit the FIL jackpot! He is Vietnamese and escaped with his ds (dh), dd and dw when dh was 4. After almost 2 yrs in a malaysian refugee camp they got sponsered to America. So he loves America and americans. Guess I just lucked out! Don't know about his mom - she's been out of his life since he was 9.
post #52 of 52

The Alpha Female Syndrome........

started a new thread...
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