I wrote this to MIL - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 05:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I wish you could set boundaries for yourself. All I asked is that you not concern yourself with our finances. You have the choice not to help, that is fine. No one will be upset if that is what you choose. But please stop asking about how much we spend on things or what we buy, it makes us uncomfortable. (my tone was very light and nonconfrontational) I called to invite her to Kailey's party and told her where we were having it and she scowled. It's $100- less than any other place. I am making the cake. There is no other expense.) She said in the snottiest voice, "oh!~How much is that going to cost?)

We are not getting new flooring, we are fixing the cars. We are however going to spend a little on Kailey's party. It will be less than anywhere else. We SAVED money doing it this way.

Just know your boundaries. It made me feel really used that you would not mind if Kailey was left at school and that you wanted to take her out of school so that you would not be inconvenienced by having to come back from Fayetteville by 2:30 to pick her up from school.

I cann't be at your house all the time, I have homework, housework, and Kailey to tend to. Please respect that we have our own life that YES hopefully will include YOU. We love you, but cannot be with you all the time.

You are greatly appreciated in all that you do for us. Your generosity is amazing. You are a wonderful person with so much to knowledge and experience. I truly value having you in my life.

Please just try to understand that we have things we need to do in our day/week.

We want you to come to Kailey's party and Kailey wants you to be there.
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#2 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 05:17 PM
 
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Eep. I hope that made you feel better to write down and I hope you didn't send it. Sorry you are feeling scrutinized.
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#3 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 05:43 PM
 
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For future reference you might try the following:

If she asks how much something will cost just ask her why she wants to know. If she answers that she is concerned over your finances, thinks it might be too much, etc. just tell her "thank you for your concern but we've budgeted for this."

If she wants to know anything about your money always answer with "why do you want to know." Then follow up to her reply that you've got your money under control.

Do not discuss money with her. The more you politely refuse to answer the quicker she will get the picture that it is none of her business. If she doesn't get the picutre at least you can always deflect her questions.

Again, do not discuss money with her, mention any money problems you might be having in front of her, and never ask her for money - she is the type that will attach strings for life to it.
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#4 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 06:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, yes, and yes.

I will never again mention anything about money.

Yes I sent it. Why wouldn't I?

We made the mistake with the car, but the car is now paid off.

She is an emotional leech. DH is planning on going to law school Fall 09 and she has been telling him he isn't smart enough...um...he maybe TOO smart for law school (only a slight exaggeration). The truth is, she doesn't want to see him succeed because then he won't "need" her anymore. Funny, we have never "needed" her. But we have wanted desparately for her to be a part of our lives. She has no respect for anyone other than herself.

She actually wanted to take Kailey out of school early so she wouldn't be inconvenienced with having to come back early from her shopping trip (no she doesn't watch Kailey but I was with her and told her I needed to be back by 2:30 to get Kailey).
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#5 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 06:39 PM
 
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We have the same MIL. I tried not telling her and then she just hounded me until I made up a number (I think I said $1,000,000) and then yelled at me that I was lying and how that was a sin (I wouldn't have lied had she not hounded me.) My SIL gets it worse than us though because she can afford a lot of things (2 incomes, one baby on the way, but not here yet, while we have 1 income and 2 kids.) BIL doesn't care so he just tells her and then MIL makes her snide little remarks that drive me up a wall (but I don't think they bother BIL, he's a lawyer, he's used to it.)

Mama of three.
 
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#6 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 06:46 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Potty Diva View Post
Yes, yes, and yes.
The truth is, she doesn't want to see him succeed because then he won't "need" her anymore. Funny, we have never "needed" her.
I TOTALLY understand. MIL is like this.

When DH got his promotion (which gave us approx. 30% more take-home pay!), she was all "Oh, are you SURE you can do this? Are you SURE you can be behind a desk all day? You're such a hands-on guy!" etc.

My MIL ALSO "needs" us at HER house ALL the time -- nothing can be hosted anywhere else. I understand you on that point as well. She is just so needy and it's annoying as heck.
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#7 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 07:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh I didn't tell her how much the party was. Didn't mention money. When she asked I said, "oh don't worry yourself with it. It was less expensive than having it at the health center." and she started hounding me and STILL I was all kind and happy. Not once during the conversation was I even hinting at being irked.

I then said, Kailey's home and I should probably get to her. I'll talk to you soon. Bye.

5 minutes later she calls and I let the machine get it and says "I wondered how long it would take..." and I turned off the answering machine.

She was going to say, "before I showed my true self." Yes, this is my true self. I am tired of sacrificing my time (and getting behind in classes) for her. To coddle and comfort her sorry self. She has another son and daughter who refuse to have anything to do with her. I felt sorry for her, felt she had come from a bad childhood and wanted to work through it and just be kind. Nothing has changed.

I was not rude to her on the phone, but because I suggested that it was not her business as to what money passes through our hands she threw a fit, like she always does when she doesn't get her way. A 71 year old woman throwing a fit. Nice.
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#8 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 07:43 PM
 
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Maybe that's what she's used to -- throwing a fit and having you respond. Maybe after a while of you not responding, she will stop throwing her fits.

My MIL has improved some, after I grew more of a backbone. She still pitches fits once in a while, but it doesn't bother me as much because I'm used to doing what I want and not bending over backwards to accomodate her neediness.
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#9 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 07:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I agree. We went for a year with no contact from her after she threw one of her fits. We did great without her. Then one day she calls and says she just can't live like this anymore and could we reconcile . I agreed and it has been rocky since. I need to put the mental health of me and my family above her needs. She sucks the life out of my husband.

I have wanted him to stand up to her (in thought, haven't said anything to him) but really he can't. He has been beaten down so much by her that he can't do it.

But I can. I will not allow her to belittle us and talk trash about our family because I am Catholic or that DH is an atheist, or that I'm fat or he's "gotten so fat since we got married".

If she thinks he's so fat stop offering to give him ice cream and candies to bring home!
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#10 of 23 Old 02-13-2008, 08:30 PM
 
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Oh wow we really do have similar MILs.

About 4 mos PP, my MIL asks me, in front of everyone, "SO! Have you tried to lose any weight yet? Done any exercising?!" And not 20 minutes later, offers me cake (and if I turn down the cake, she gets mad!)
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#11 of 23 Old 02-14-2008, 12:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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wow! We must have the same MIL- is your name Fran by any chance

She hasn't called, which is rare for her so maybe we'll be out of the mess for at least a little while.
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#12 of 23 Old 02-14-2008, 12:26 AM
 
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MIL's can be a frusterating bunch.

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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#13 of 23 Old 02-14-2008, 12:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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especially those who chase their son with a baseball bat and kitchen knife, oh, and then deny it (and this didn't come from my husband first, but from other family members).
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#14 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 06:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We had a nice dinner with Kailey and came home to, "Mark, bring me my heater and sewing machine, now I shouldn't have to ask you."

Um...yeah, if she wanted them back she could have asked for them. This is just another way for her to control some aspect of my life or Mark's. She had those things shipped to our house from QVC without asking us and only told us after they had been shipped. THey have been sitting on a shelf in our pantry- untouched. In fact we asked her NOT to send things to our house because we do not have any room to store it. She just kept on. Last I talked to her about the heater I said please don't we don't have room. She talked to Mark about it some time after that and he didn't respond to her- guess she took that as a sign it was ok to send it.

I called her when we got home from dinner and kindly said (in a message), "If you want the heater and sewing machine you can come get them. Thanks, bye."

She called later but I was on the other line and did not pick up. She called a few minutes ago, but I turned the phone on then turned it off quickly. I am not playing this time.

When my schoolwork and mental state is affected (and I really can't afford extra stressors) then I need to take drastic measures.
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#15 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 06:30 PM
 
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i'd refuse the packages she's sending if she can't stop sending things to your house.
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#16 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 06:32 PM
 
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MIL AND SIL were BOTH like this. MIL passed away (rest her soul) and we are in the process of distancing ourselves from SIL, though we do have to deal with her due to the will, etc.

Recently I told her how I felt. I have not felt this healthy and great in years. It's so important to stand up to these controlling manipulative people! Unless you have dealt with it, you might think it's crazy, but once you go through it you realize...manipulative controlling, always right people. Gotta love it, if you want to have them in your life, create healthy boundaries. ANd then, worry about things which really matter, like your life and children! Coz they don't.
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#17 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 10:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Potty Diva View Post
We had a nice dinner with Kailey and came home to, "Mark, bring me my heater and sewing machine, now I shouldn't have to ask you."
OMGosh this sounds JUST like my grandmother was. Shudder. She could be so charming and pleasant (particularly if you weren't family!) but gad, she sucked the joy out of so many things.
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#18 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 10:23 PM
 
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Maybe any time she makes you mad, say to yourself,

"Your name is NARF"

It makes ME giggle, at least. Not that there's anything wrong with "Fran" as a name. It's actually a rather pretty name. But this Fran sounds like a Narf.
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#19 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 10:55 PM
 
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.
oops wrong thread.
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#20 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 10:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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For my own sanity and the samity of those people I DO want to be around me I have cut her off. I won't be mean, but I will not allow her to be in my life. For 7 years we have done this rollercoaster ride and I can't do it anymore. My daughter is old enough to realize why I'm upset and I can't do that to her. It has started affecting my school work, family life, etc. NO MORE!

Whew- I feel liberated!
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#21 of 23 Old 02-15-2008, 11:10 PM
 
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Good for you!!

You have more than enough to deal with. Don't you feel lighter?
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#22 of 23 Old 02-17-2008, 12:06 AM
 
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OT not to be creepy or anything but I live in Fay. I just think it's cool when I see someone online who lives near me.
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#23 of 23 Old 02-17-2008, 12:43 AM
 
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Good for you for giving up your MIL for Lent! Hopefully it will be a permanant change that will make you all feel better!

Mama of three.
 
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