Obnoxious father-in-law - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 02-15-2014, 06:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Here's yet another in-law discussion, so sorry if this has been talked about already.

 

My husband and I bought a house in December for us and our four children. His father was instrumental in helping us choose the house, inspecting it (before and with the inspector), helping us clean the mold out, and more. Yesterday we were finally moving the final load from our old house when we wanted boxes. FIL spotted my crock pot box and decided to take out the styrofoam inside and throw it away. I had a big problem with that because 1) it's my packing material in my box, not his and 2) I've had a crock pot crack in the last year or two and I wanted to have that packing material for when we move the crock pot again to reduce the chances of this crock pot cracking. He made an "executive decision" and told the young man we hired to help us move to throw it away. When I went to take it out of the trash, he had broken it apart so I couldn't use it. This is obviously still bothering me and I need to resolve it in my mind and think of something else I could put around the crock pot in the box in a future move, and even more importantly, think of how to talk to my father-in-law better. He accused me of "micromanaging" and threatened to go home and stop helping me if it wasn't thrown away. I thought that was being even more controlling than me, especially since shortly after that I went up in the attic and brought down lots of empty boxes.

 

We're probably going to see him again today. I can't just not talk to him or busy myself with other things all day because he yells at my children and bosses me and my husband around. He is helpful too, but it is not that easy to be around him.

 

If you have any constructive advice (please go easy on me), please share it. Thanks!


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#2 of 7 Old 02-15-2014, 11:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Catholic Mama View Post
 

Here's yet another in-law discussion, so sorry if this has been talked about already.

 

My husband and I bought a house in December for us and our four children. His father was instrumental in helping us choose the house, inspecting it (before and with the inspector), helping us clean the mold out, and more. Yesterday we were finally moving the final load from our old house when we wanted boxes. FIL spotted my crock pot box and decided to take out the styrofoam inside and throw it away. I had a big problem with that because 1) it's my packing material in my box, not his and 2) I've had a crock pot crack in the last year or two and I wanted to have that packing material for when we move the crock pot again to reduce the chances of this crock pot cracking. He made an "executive decision" and told the young man we hired to help us move to throw it away. When I went to take it out of the trash, he had broken it apart so I couldn't use it. This is obviously still bothering me and I need to resolve it in my mind and think of something else I could put around the crock pot in the box in a future move, and even more importantly, think of how to talk to my father-in-law better. He accused me of "micromanaging" and threatened to go home and stop helping me if it wasn't thrown away. I thought that was being even more controlling than me, especially since shortly after that I went up in the attic and brought down lots of empty boxes.

 

We're probably going to see him again today. I can't just not talk to him or busy myself with other things all day because he yells at my children and bosses me and my husband around. He is helpful too, but it is not that easy to be around him.

 

If you have any constructive advice (please go easy on me), please share it. Thanks!

 

First off, it's your home.  You get to micromanage a move if you want to.  :-)  My constructive advice runs along the lines of saying something like, "I really need this packing material, though.  Thanks so much for your help today.  We'll see you another time!"

 

If that sounds snotty, it isn't meant to be.  What's so bad about your FIL leaving?  There is no amount of helpful worth that poisonous coin (and I mean the yelling and bullying).

 

You don't give this info in the background, so I'm addressing it from a start-from-scratch moment:  I think it would be really helpful if you were on the same page with your DH, perhaps talk about this and decide how to have something play out ahead of time.


Empty-nesting SAHM to DS1 (1989), DS2 (1992), an underachieving Bernese Mountain Dog (2006-2014), and an overachieving mother (1930).  Married to DH since 1986.
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#3 of 7 Old 02-19-2014, 06:42 AM
 
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Lesson learned - his help comes at a price. Begin gently minimizing opportunities for him to control your household.

In the meantime count your blessings and genuinely appreciate the help he has given.
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#4 of 7 Old 02-19-2014, 07:03 AM
 
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So he basically destroyed your property and then threatened you if you did not cooperate with him? Sounds like it is time for your husband to have a talk with him about respecting the autonomy of your family. Easier said than done I know. We have a similar situation going on and it doesn't seem that any amount of talking does much good in the long term.


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#5 of 7 Old 02-19-2014, 08:10 PM
 
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Let him leave, don't let him have the control he is trying to have.  If he walks out things might take a bit longer for you to do, but I would think you could do them with more self peace.  No one deserves to be belittled and yelled at all the time.

 

As far as what you can use next time to pack it with I would see if you could get some of the air pillow things like people use in mailing packages and pack them both inside the crockpot and around the outside. 


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#6 of 7 Old 02-20-2014, 05:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, MariaMadly. I saw my therapist last night and he told me my FIL is the one who was micromanaging, and yes I have the right to do was I want with my stuff, including the contents of the crock pot box. The reason I didn't say Thanks, see you next time is because I needed his continued help.

 

PumaBearClan, I do appreciate what he does and I thank him every time he helps. It would have been worth it to pay movers, though, to get some respect. However, as my therapist pointed out, if the crock pot does break for lack of packing material next move, we can buy another new crock pot with the money we saved from not hiring movers.

 

fruitfulmomma, I agree but my husband says he lets it go on / puts up with it because we are the ones who are benefitting from his dad helping us, not him.

 

ancoda, thanks for the suggestion. I might also use T-shirts I'm not wearing; that's how I packed most of our dishes this time.

 

Thank you all!


May God bless you and His Blessed Mother Mary keep you!  :-)

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#7 of 7 Old 02-28-2014, 04:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Catholic Mama View Post

The reason I didn't say Thanks, see you next time is because I needed his continued help.

(snip)

my husband says he lets it go on / puts up with it because we are the ones who are benefitting from his dad helping us, not him.

Sounds like you and your DH have both made up your minds then. You know the price to pay for your FIL's help, and you're both willing to pay it.
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