My inlaws is/are my friends - Spinoff - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Are Any of your parents-"inlaws" your friends?
Yes, with one in-law 4 12.90%
Yes, with two or more of my 4 12.90%
Yes, with all of my parents 3 9.68%
No freaking way!! Are you crazy? 13 41.94%
Other 7 22.58%
Voters: 31. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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you KNOW this was coming didnt ya?!!!


your parents in laws. i dont know what they would be called if you arent married. but just wanted to make clear i include all - married or not married. 


any of them your friends? 


all of them your friends?


i would love to hear the positive stories. but please feel free to vent if you would like to. 

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#2 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 06:21 PM
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Yep! smile.gif My FIL and I are friendly, but we don't call each other up just to chat or anything. But my MIL and I will go to the movies, call to say hi, etc. -- she's great. 

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#3 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 06:25 PM - Thread Starter
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DANG. lima you are SOOOO kind. my poll wording is so totally unedited. serves me right for getting distracted and not editing. duh.gif nono.gif


this is how the questions SHOULD read



  • Yes, with one in-law
    Yes, with two or more of my INLAWS
    Yes, with all of my INLAWS
    No freaking way!! Are you crazy?

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#4 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
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my response is the same as lima.


my FIL = more of a respect relationship but still friend. if i truly was torn on an intellectual topic he was my man. 


my StepMIL - indifferent


my MIL = to say she is my bestest friend of all is an understatement. sadly she lives 12 hours away otherwise we'd be spending time together everyday. the feeling is mutual. we talk for HOURS. 'hold the phone. i need to pee. brb' 

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#5 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 07:07 PM
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No! I don't even talk to them, Dh doesn't either. DH is friends with my dad. They are rafting, snowboarding, hiking, drinking buddies. 

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#6 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 09:11 PM
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I never talk to DP's parents on the phone or anything like that. DP barely talks to them, except for occasional emails. When we visit we're friendly.

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#7 of 27 Old 01-17-2012, 10:46 PM
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Mine have a serious mean streak and need for drama over minutia. I can't believe they raised my incredible dh. Thank goodness we've always lived several states away from them.
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#8 of 27 Old 01-18-2012, 09:45 AM
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My DH's father died about 30 years ago (before DH and I met) and my MIL died about 12 years ago (before DD was born).  I would have liked to have known DH's dad.  He was a chain-smoking, gin at 5:00, successful plumber who died on his way to the race track.  Not that I do any of these things, but he was definitely from a different era and DH speaks fondly of him.  I'm sorry I never got to meet him.


DH's mother, when she was alive, was...let's say...entertaining!  Even when she died in her late eighties, she had bright red hair (dyed) and a love of all things animal print (from furniture to clothing).  She pretty much lived up to a stereotype that you see in movies like "Married to the Mob."  I found her endearing more than anthing, because she seemed to be totally unaware of how others reacted to her.  I was never close to her (we lived far away and she was pushing 80 when I was in my late 20s, early 30s), so there wasn't a lot of common ground between us except DH. 


I'm great friends, however, with DH's other family members.  A lot of them are a little off-kilter, but I fit right in.

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#9 of 27 Old 01-18-2012, 10:27 AM
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I voted 'other' simply because I'm somewhere between 'No way!' and 'Yes, they're my friends.'  They're not my friends, they're mostly a pain in the neck, but we're friendly enough.  I do actually enjoy talking about mothering-type subjects with MIL, she had 7 kids and has a lot to share.


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#10 of 27 Old 01-19-2012, 06:15 AM
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I'm not, really. My MIL and I just don't have a personality to really be friends, though we can get along. She's not one to really have a good discussion with because she's got her opinions and that's that. Otherwise, she's a bit of an odd duck and doesn't really talk much except the most basic of chit chat. DH and I have been together for seven years and we still mainly chat about the weather and sports teams. lol.gif Doesn't help that she and DH had a rocky relationship in high school and she treats him very obviously like her least favorite child still. I resent her for it because DH is such an awesome guy. He just doesn't fit her idea of what a person is supposed to be. (9-5 job, church, marriage before kids, bachelors in a real field of study, not something artsy like culinary arts etc)


SFIL...yeah not so much. He's got very little personality, which is perfect for MIL. She tells him what to do and how to do it and he complies and everyone is happy! He likes to corner me and talk politics because I'm the only other "liberal" in the family, but that's about as far as it goes. Normally he eats and then falls asleep during family get togethers. On the couch. He snores. Its something between hilarious and extremely annoying!! go back and forth. Sometimes he's ok, sometimes he's a giant jerk. We had a rocky start because DH would go to FIL for everything when we first started our family and were trying to work things out. DH would get FIL's opinion/advice and that was that. DH has long since stopped that. But FIL doesn't seem to treat me too well. He rarely talks to me, normally its straight to DH or the DCs. There have been times that I've asked a question and he's answered it to DH. Now, when we do talk, we get along well and have similiar tastes and ways of seeing the world. I think he's pretty smart and does have good points of view and opinions. Its about half and half between him being a real jerk and marginally enjoying my time with him. Which is extremely frustrating. So I just limit my time with him. winky.gif

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#11 of 27 Old 01-19-2012, 01:53 PM
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I picked 'other'. Honestly, my inlaws and I have very little in common other than my DH. Also, they just aren't that interested in me. (I joke that my MIL would rather hear about the cats' latest adventures than hear about what I've been up to, but that may be accurate.) They aren't very interested in my husband (their only surviving child) either, so...? He calls about once a month and they are friendly and all, but I think the whole thing is weird. *shrugs* I could have done a lot worse though.

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#12 of 27 Old 01-19-2012, 03:33 PM
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I chose other -- there is nothing wrong with my inlaws & I don't think it would be 'crazy' to be friends with them... we just don't really share any common interests or anything, we don't click. We're friendly, and I like them, but we're not friends.

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#13 of 27 Old 01-19-2012, 04:30 PM
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Well, one part of the ILs is restraining-order crazy and the other part has little interest in us and we feel the same way.  It is sort of sad but you can't choose family......


It warms my heart to see great in-law relationships.  I have friends with fantastic ILs.  We would go on vacation with our friends and the ILs would be right there, hanging with the "kids."  These were people that truly enjoyed their children, their childred's spouses/partners, their friends, and later on, their grandkids and our children.  DH and I say that is the type of IL we want to be - warm, open, accepting.


My dad and DH were super close, Dad would call DH just to talk to him and them feel guilty that I might feel left out so he would call me seperately to talk.  My grandparents (mom's parents) were over the moon when I married DH, they viewed it as adding another grandchild to the family.  Thankfully, DH was thrilled by their love and affection.


DH likes my mom but they don't have a lot in common to have the type of bond he had with my dad.  My mom is remarried and while her husband is a great guy, he and DH don't have any shared interests either.  They all like each other well enough but aren't close and would never, for example, chat on the phone to each other before handing it over to me.

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#14 of 27 Old 01-19-2012, 04:43 PM
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I chose yes, I am friends with all of my IL's.


My DH's parents are absolute sweethearts. My MIL is pretty much my personal hero. She quit smoking cold turkey when she found out she was going to be a Grandma more than 4 years ago, and also picked up running. She has since become a marathoner! And is my inspiration to do the same. She is sooooo down to earth, country livin, wonder woman. She loves all things natural - but not because it's neat, just because that's the only way she's ever thought to do it. Bakes and cooks all of her meals fresh, raises her chickens, heats their house with a woodburning stove. She love, love, loves my kids and treats them wonderfully and plays with them and gives me a break when I need it, and has never made an attempt to overstep our parental boundaries. My DS thinks she is the coolest thing since sliced bread.


My FIL is a real hippie-type free lovin guy, a truck driver, and he is awesome. He's got a mullet. He loves it, and I do too. The only thing he loves more than his motorcycle is his wife and his grandkids. They like doing cookouts and hanging out with us, playing games, drinking beer, and playing cornhole. They like to take us camping in their RV in the summer. They like to go kayaking with us. Bottom line, my IL's are AWESOME. The vast majority of the time, I'd rather hang with the IL's than my own parents and half of my friends. They are more kind, more helpful, and more fun!


My dad is also a really close friend of mine, he likes football and jokes and my kids. He is always, always honest. He loves my DH. My parents and my IL's are also friends now too, they like to get together and have "driveway cookouts" (hello suburbia!). My mom can be kind of a downer because she is sooooo high strung and uptight and thinks everything needs to be perfect all the time, but usually the 3 of them can get her a drink and all that disappears. Haha!


Also my BIL is like a genius. He does some really amazing freelance lighting work and is a really nice guy. My new SIL, his wife, is awesome. She is a nanny, and an amazing one. She treats my kids wonderfully and they adore her. She's pregnant with their first baby and being SO nice about keeping the whole family involved in the pregnancy, which I really admire cause I was a cranky pregnant lady. 


My GIL (MIL's mom) is our friend too. We stay with her when we're in town. My DS is pretty much the light of her world. My other GIL (FIL's mom) is a sweetheart and pretty much the family matriarch. She seems serious but it's the quiet ones that get ya! So yes, there are a few of us out there on the planet... my entire family IN LAW is completely great. joy.gif



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#15 of 27 Old 01-20-2012, 09:14 AM
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I absolutely love my ex FIL. hes such a great guy.  he just taught me how to change my brakes. 

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#16 of 27 Old 01-21-2012, 01:47 PM
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my inlaws come from a culture with strict generational roles.  which has basically resulted in us only being able to have a very superficial relationship.  they are good people who cant relate to us at all and dont know what to do with sons and daughters that they cant boss around.  so i picked other.... i like them and love them and consider them my family but on a personal level we only really have the kids in common.

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#17 of 27 Old 01-21-2012, 03:51 PM
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Close with MIL and SFIL, but not FIL (who died a year ago) and SMIL. MIL and SFIL are really great people and have even become close with my parents and sister. My sister had even invited MIL, SFIL and the rest of MIL's family to her wedding because she likes them so much. FIL and SMIL are a whole other story, and I don't think they have ever liked me.


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#18 of 27 Old 01-21-2012, 11:43 PM
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No. No. No.


My MIL and SIL will suck your soul out simply by being in their presence.   And my FIL had his soul sucked out by the other 2 long ago and being near him is rather...depressing.


They have a really screwed up family dynamic and we try to keep away from the crazy as much as possible.

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#19 of 27 Old 01-22-2012, 11:43 AM
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I used to hang out with my old in-laws, but I didn't really have any respect for the way they raised my ex. If I met them now, I certainly wouldn't hang out with them, anymore - I'm not into the partying, drinking, pot, etc. anymore...


My current in-laws are wonderful people, but they live a long way from us (we're in Vancouver, and they're in Knoxville). They call every Sunday, and we see them one week a year, when they come here to visit. If we lived closer to them, I think my MIL and I would be reasonably close, as long as we continued to avoid discussing religious, and some social, issues. (My in-laws are deeply religious Christians, and also social conservatives...I'm semi-liberal, more so as I get older, and completely non-religious...I don't even consider myself to be a spiritual person - that entire aspect of life completely confuses me, and isn't on my radar at all.) I think my FIL and I would reach a state closely resembling an armed truce. He's a really good man in a lot of ways, but he likes to stir the pot (he and dh have semi-friendly arguments about everything) and doesn't know when to quit. I also think he's a bit of a control freak, in little ways. I tend to bite my tongue around him a lot, and I'd have trouble doing that if we saw them all the time.


So, I wouldn't really say my in-laws are my friends, but I love them to bits, think they raised an amazing man in dh, and think they're good people. They just come at a lot of aspects of life from the opposite direction to me. We do share quite a few values, but not so much on others. And, when I'm getting frustrated with my FIL, I tend to focus on the the fact that they've taken ds1 in as their grandson, 100%, with no reservations whatsoever, from the moment dh and I got together. I've read - and seen - enough blended family horror stories to know how precious that really is.


Actually...the Disney trip kind of summed up my contradictory feelings about them. Back in 2006, our Christmas present was a trip to Disney World, for the whole family. We went in March, 2007, and were actually there for ds1's 14th birthday. They paid for our airfare, accommodations, and theme park passes. The reason they did it when they did was because they felt that ds1 was on the cusp of being too teenage, too cool, too whatever, to enjoy it, and they wanted him to have the experience before he reached that stage (he never did, but this was based on the reactions of dh's younger brothers when they were teens). They plan to treat us again, when the other three are a bit older - I'd guess in the next couple of years. But ,this trip was really for ds1.


On the "pro" side (go in-laws!!): They went to huge trouble and expense to provide a once-in-a-lifetime experience for their son's stepson. They were all about following our lead while we were actually at the parks, and going to whichever theme park we wanted to visit, etc. They'd been before, so sort of acted as our hosts, and talked about options, etc. before we planned our days. They made a point of doing something really fun for ds1's actual birthday. I mean - it was huge.


On the "con" side (we're very different - ugh): I'm really not into Disney that much, and big crowded places like Disney World are my personal concept of hell. I simply didn't want to be there, at all. I never told them that (because I think throwing a multi-thousand dollar gift into someone's face is beyond churlish), but it just kind of underscored that we're not on the same page. They visit, as a couple, occasionally, and I can't even imagine myself doing that....maybe once, if dh really wanted to do it, but it certainly wouldn't be a regular thing. We treated them to a nice dinner in one of the decent restaurants on our last night, and my FIL insisted on paying for...think it was the drinks. He's done this before, and it really, really bothers me. They spend all this money on us, then when we try to do one nice thing (as a thank you of sorts), he'll get all "oh, you're a young family starting out" and pay for part of it. This isn't really a bad thing, as such - it's just something that I feel is rude. I have lots of things like that with my in-laws, because we're just very different people. Oh - and it doesn't help that I'm seven years older than dh. My FIL, in particular, looks at me as being his son's age. I'm not. When I met his son, I already had a failed marriage, and seven years of childrearing behind me. I wasn't a "young person just starting out". If anything, I was a semi-young person starting over. I'm just not even remotely in the place in my life that he sees me as being in, and sometimes, it causes a lot of friction...especially as he's the type to hand out fatherly advice, and it's frequently on things that I already have adult experience with and have already formed my own (different) views on.


So, yeah - overall - wonderful, wonderful people, even FIL. But...if we lived closer to them, I think FIL and I would be in a state of armed truce in very short order.

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#20 of 27 Old 01-22-2012, 12:27 PM
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My DS's paternal grandmother in one of my dearest friends. We were friends before I ever met my ex. She's the one that introduced us, which she has since apologized for profusely. lol She's moving in with us in a couple months. The rest of their family (at least the ones I've met) are psycho, gossipy, drama lovers, but she's wonderful.

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#21 of 27 Old 01-22-2012, 03:45 PM
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We're friendly.... not friends.

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#22 of 27 Old 01-22-2012, 10:05 PM
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No we are not friends. Nooooooooooo.


They are more like my grandparents, that I can't really stand and yet live one minute away from. banghead.gif

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#23 of 27 Old 01-22-2012, 10:18 PM
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I talk to dh's parents on a regular basis. They come to visit me and the kids (live about 2 hours away) every other week or so. Because dh works out of the house, they rarely see him (or they are going as he is walking in). I will call my MIL for cooking advice, to tell her about things going on, but not just usualy to say  hello. If FIL picks up we'll chat also. I'd say we have a nice conversation at least once a week, and see them usually every other week.

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#24 of 27 Old 01-22-2012, 10:20 PM
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my X-MIL is so awesome that i asked her to be my Godmother when i was baptized last year.


i've been divorced from her son for over 10 years, and we didn't have children together... but i still visit her every summer. 


i was really glad that she agreed to be my Godmother, since i now have a solid, permanent, "respectable" title for our relationship... instead of just referring to her as my "X-MIL."

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#25 of 27 Old 01-23-2012, 12:33 PM
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My ILs live on the other side of our town and we see them at least twice a week. Friends? Not like my friends but friendly family members. I look forward to seeing them, my kids are extremely close to them and I would not think twice about calling them for anything. I have done so many many times. DH says I am their 4th daughter (they have 6 sons, 3 daughters) because they tell me things and confide in me things they would never confide in some of their other in laws. For instance, last year they were taking a long trip out to visit my BIL and his new wife. She told me how nervous she was and not looking forward to it because she barely knew her new DIL and although this new DIL is nice, she is still in the gushing stage about everything and it puts my MIL on edge. Or maybe she is just used to our relationship and I am really very real and very honest with her, so she is comparing it. When another daughter was contemplating divorce, they sought out us for discussing it with them and how upset they were. I have seen FIL say one thing and when this person leaves the room, he gets real and says whats really on his mind. The first time that happened, I told DH, he replied- "Like I said, you're their daughter."


I do love both of them like my own parents. They have known me since I was a young teen, so they watched me grow into this 40 yr old woman and mother of their grandchildren and wife of their son who is happy. My parents love my DH, my dad tries to connect, talks about things that DH has interest in if my dad does and is comfortable etc but its not the same as the relationship I have with my FIL. Before my mother's dementia (oh shit, this is the first time I openly wrote that) she and DH had a great relationship as well.


So they are the parenting/grandparent role to us, but no doubt our best of friends too if that makes sense.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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#26 of 27 Old 01-23-2012, 05:56 PM
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DH's parents are our friends.  My parents are not.  I once asked them to try to be our friends and they refused, thinking friends are below parents, thus a demotion. :D

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#27 of 27 Old 01-24-2012, 08:17 AM
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Can't stand them.  They are selfish, self centered and live their lives the complete opposite way that dh and I want to and do live.  They don't understand us and we don't understand them.  One of the best things we've ever done was move away from them. After 17 years dh will still shock me with a story of how life was growing up I hate them just a little bit more.  They are utter failures at parenting and left all three of their kids so damaged it's tragic. Thankfully my dh had more outside influences than his younger brother and sister and is a fully functional adult (actually he's probably been an adult since he was 12 :( ) unlike his brother and sister.  

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