Interesting conversation with SIL

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-18-2008
Interesting conversation with SIL
Thu, 09-20-2012 - 10:25am

My MIL and one SIL love to start drama. So, they love to say things that cause problems when my husband is out of earshot. A lot of it used to be hurtful things directed at DH, and I wouldn't say anything to avoid hurting his feelings. I finally had enough and let them know that if it was something they didn't want repeated to DH, then not to bother talking to me about it. Then, when they said something and I told him, then they'd would turn it around to where I "misunderstood". Luckily, DH has always backed me up. They finally quit trying to engage me, and they few times they have slipped it was in front of DH. 

Recently, I was sitting with my SIL and MIL at a family wedding. SIL was intoxicated, and when my DH left the table she started in about how I horrible my FIL is and that I should never leave him alone with my children, but told me she couldn't say why. Then she sat there staring at me waiting for me to ask why. She just kept saying over and over that even if I asked, she couldn't tell me why. I didn't take the bait, and finally said, "Ok, I'm not asking". So then she says to make sure that I never leave him alone with DD, but that she can't tell me why, because if my DH ever found out the reason he would kill their father and she didn't want to be responsible for my DH going to prison. My MIL just sat there nodding in agreement the whole time. (My MIL and FIL have been divorced for several years, FIL had won custody of the kids after a long court battle where my SIL alleged physical abuse by her stepfather which she later admitted to lying about, and my FIL and SIL now live in the same city a few hours from where we live). I just responded to her that we hadn't talked to him in over a year, so it wasn't really an issue. My FIL has issues with drugs, and we don't maintain contact with when he's using. Then she said that we should have never left him alone with DS. I told her that we never have, for the above reasons, and she told me she didn't believe me. Then she made a comment about she would like my kids to come and stay with her and left the table. My MIL then started a conversation that I should never leave my kids alone with my SIL because she has an alcohol problem! I basically just laughed off the whole conversation, because I don't trust anything that comes out of SIL's mouth. I did tell my DH that she said we shouldn't leave our kids alone with FIL. He asked me why she said that, and I only told him that she told me she couldn't say, so I didn't ask. I left out all the other parts of the conversation because I felt like it would upset my DH for no reason. I also told him that MIL said not to leave our kids with SIL, and he just laughed off the conversation like I did.

A few weeks ago, my other SIL was over (my SILs have different fathers). The two SILs had a major falling out and had made up, but are still having issues. She was going on about SIL's drinking and how MIL won't confront her about it, and I told her about the above conversation I had with MIL and SIL. SIL asked me why I didn't ask her to elaborate about my FIL, and I told her that the way the story was being told it felt like SIL was just testing to me to see what I would tell DH. Then my SIL says, "Oh, she was probably going to tell you about her supposed molestation", and rolled her eyes. My friend then walked in, and SIL changed the subject.

My FIL is now sober again, and DH has started talking with him. I don't believe what my SIL insinuated, and my other SIL doesn't seem to either, so I don't feel like my children are in any danger. Like I said, we have never left them unsupervised with him and our contact with him is limited. We are all going to be together this weekend for the first time in years, and I'm nervous my SIL is going to try to bring this up again. I'm wondering why everyone in the family "knows" this story, except for my DH? My other SIL acted as if it was common knowledge. I have heard several horrible stories about my FIL, but SIL still allows her children to be around him. I'm starting to feel bad that I never told DH the full extent of the conversation now. But on the other hand, I know my DH won't believe my SIL, but he would still confront her and my FIL and a big argument would happen. Every fiber of my being tells me that SIL was just trying to start something, and it's better not to take the bait. I'm just wondering what someone else would have done in my situation? What would you do if it was brought up again?



iVillage Member
Registered: 02-14-2004
Thu, 09-20-2012 - 11:49pm

You already have reasons not to have your FIL alone with your children, so I don't see how it would change anything if you discussed the situation further other than to upset your husband over hinted accusations.  I would have a discussion with DH to remind him the reasons you already have agreed on not to have FIL alone with the kids and not get into what is basically gossip. 

Now if your DH suggested leaving the kids alone with dear old dad, I would bring up the problem SIL mentioned to be sure your kids aren't in an unsafe position, but unless there's a reason, I think I'd let sleeping dogs lie. 

If you KNEW he had done something, I'd call the cops, but it isn't like you could get him arrested for something he may or may not have done and since you know your SIL is problematic and not particularly trustworthy, I'd just let it go at this point.