When to give up?

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2003
When to give up?
12
Mon, 11-22-2004 - 12:16am

My MIL is a toxic relationship. Plain and simple. And my DH had finally decided he's through.


I, as his wife and her DIL, am THRILLED. I cannot stand the woman. She's hateful and manipulative.


However, I am sad for Sean that he has come to these realizations about his mom. What can I do for him to make it easier? I have tried and tried at his behest to have a relationship with his mom - and it has failed every time. And so now that he has instructed me not to talk to her, email her, or call her, I would think I would be more excited. But I think it's okay for me to be at odds with her - but she is his MOM. Should I push him to stay after her to do what's right? Or should I just let it go? I mean it would seem odd for me to not want anything to do with her all the while trying to get him to maintain contact...


Any words of advice?


Jennie

MadsenFallSiggy3.png picture by jenniemadsen1

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2004
Mon, 11-22-2004 - 12:09pm
welcome to the board jen.I really dont know anything about the relationship between you and your mil,or the relationship between your dh and his mother.So i will give you advice the best way possible.I assume your mil doesnt treat you to well and your Dh notices the way she treats you??So he doesnt want either of you to have contact with her?My advice would be depending on how close the relationship is between DH and his mom is to tell DH that he doesnot have to cut contact with her because you dont want anything to do with her.What i mean is,tell him you want to cut any relationship u have with his mom off cause of the way she treats you,but tell him "since that is your mom ,i feel you should not cut contact off with her for me".Because he may resent you later down the road if he was close to his mom before you to were ever together. Please give more info on the relationships with your dh and his mom,and with you and mil,that way we can help you alot better....... :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2003
Mon, 11-22-2004 - 12:46pm

I have never in any way gotten in the middle of Dh and his mom. He has been free to have whatever relationship with her he wants and at one point I had an okay time of it with her too. They were NOT close growing up - she was always off with another BF, manipulating Sean's father with custody, and into drugs. (This is all known information)


Sean noticed from the start that she was threatened by me (his words not mine) and that is when she started to get clingy (again his words). She called him every day and took him to lunch once a week. I went when I could from work.


Sean has asked me not to call her or talk to her for the time being b/c of recent events and I told him it was up to him if he wanted to continue trying to work with her. He knows I would never ask him to cut off communication with his family. (I am not sure I think he should - but I know how HARD it is to keep up a relationship with them.)


However, today, I emailed everyone on my Abi update list a video clip of her crawling and she called Sean to thank him. He told her mom I don't have anything to do with the updates. I wasn't even here when she shot the video nor did I send it. If it weren't for Jennie you wouldn't get pictures (he's just forgetful about stuff like that). She said nothing. And will say nothing to me. She treats me as if I do not matter, I am unimportant - really all the things she accuses/claims I do to HER in relation to Sean is really what she is doing to me. I have not downplayed to Sean the fact that she is his mother. EVER. B/c I know what that would do to him.


I just got upset with Sean b/c he thinks it's okay. Regardless of whether or not we are in communication (and obviously we are on some level - I don't see keeping pics and updates about Abi from her) it is NOT OKAY for her to treat me like this. To make me feel unimportant. I know I know - I am in charge of my own happiness and I know I am importabnt - but I do not have a place in my life for people like this - and Sean says I don't have to talk to her - yet she is still a part of our lives - she is his mother, my MIL, and Abi's grandmother.


I guess the bottom line is that this is NOT how I want things to go. This is not the relationship I want any of us to have. What do I do??? I take the high road. I put in the time and it backfires and I get clobbered every time!!! DH gets it too.


Jennie

MadsenFallSiggy3.png picture by jenniemadsen1

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-23-2003
Mon, 11-22-2004 - 12:56pm

>>>Sean has asked me not to call her or talk to her for the time being b/c of recent events and I told him it was up to him if he wanted to continue trying to work with her. He knows I would never ask him to cut off communication with his family.<<<

This is your husband's decision, his mother, and his family. He's an adult and can handle them all the way he feels is best. I suggest that you do what he asks and not having contact with her. If you aren't sure about the pictures or videos that you email, then ask him if he wants you to stop sending them. If he does, then respect his wishes.

>>>I guess the bottom line is that this is NOT how I want things to go. This is not the relationship I want any of us to have.<<<

In this case, it doesn't matter that this isn't how you wanted things to go. This is between your husband and his mother. Letting the two of them work it out is the wisest thing to do. You can't control your husband and you can't control MIL, you can only control your reaction to it. Your husband can't control the way that his mother treats you, so he has given you the option of cutting her out of your life so you don't have to deal with her. He cares for you--if he didn't he wouldn't have done that.

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Avatar for cl_mugalug
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 11-22-2004 - 8:15pm

Hi Jennie. Welcome to the board. Here is my two cents on this. Be grateful that he is no longer allowing you to be subjected to his mother's crap. Most of the ladies on here are still putting up with it after years of abuse. I am one of them. I had to put up with MIL's crap for about 3 1/2 to 4 years. Way too long. Dh did little to nothing to stop what his mother was doing to me. Now I have taken control. Dh doesn't like it, but too bad. If he won't stand for it

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2004
Tue, 11-23-2004 - 10:17am
hi jen,im glad you explained more for us.i agree with what ubermedusa and cl mugalug have said.Also you said DH and his mom were not close as he was growing up,so it makes alot of sense that he tells you he wants you to have know contact with her at this time.As a child she probly emotionally hurt him by not being there for him and doesnt want to feel that hurt again and also tring to protect his child from that pain from her also.But yes i would respect DH wishes reguarding her,he knows his mom,i think he is dealing with her the best way he knows how.And although this is not the way you want things to go as you menioned in your post,i think that any futher contact weather through email and pictures should be discussed between you and dh before sending them.keep us posted (:
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2003
Tue, 11-23-2004 - 11:05am

Sean does want me to keep sending her pictures and videos (it's not really personal b/c I have a contact list of about 75 and everyone gets the weekly pic of video clip) It really helps with my lack of time that way... lol.


I realized something yesterday (I don't know if I posted this or not already) but I don't really want her to apologize to me, I don't want her comments, I am OK with not having anything to do with her and I am OK with her not liking me.


What I do want is for DH to care - and I think he is so initially caught off guard by her behavior that he doesn't react at all and I mistake that for not caring, or worse, him thinking that the way she behaves is OK. I now know that he does NOT think it is OK and he will not tolerate anyone treating his loved ones that way.


You ladies have given me some great advice - I think I will be sticking around - we haven't even gotten into my SMIL (stepMIL) and FIL yet.... :-) All is quiet on that front since 5 months ago when she kicked me and my in need of nursing baby out of her house....


Jennie

MadsenFallSiggy3.png picture by jenniemadsen1

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Sat, 11-27-2004 - 3:50pm

Hi Jenniemadsen, welcome to the board!!

I find it refreshing that a husband is actually able to stand up to his Mommy!! That is GREAT!!!!

I think you should let it be. If he doesn't want to have any contact with his mother and doesn't want you to either, let it go that way. It sounds like he is trying to protect you from his mother and that is GREAT!!! Most of the husbands that are talked about here wouldn't do such a thing.

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Avatar for kweenie97
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-09-2003
Mon, 12-27-2004 - 1:06pm

I have to say, I can identify in a way.

My husband also chooses not to have a relationship with his mother. But his case is a bit different. He was given up for adoption at birth and found his birth mother when he was 22. His adoptive parents where abusive and he was taken from them when he was 16 and they have since both died. He spent almost 2 years living with his birth mom and eventually after about 7 years going on her emotional roller coaster (she's a drug addict) decided he didn't want a relationship with her. Now I've never met the woman and have talked to her twice on the phone...once when she tried to call on his birthday and just two weeks ago when I tried to see if we could spend some time with his youngest sister (13) at her request over her Christmas break. I guess as his wife I feel like I should support whatever choice he has made about his family. Those are his relationships to have or not to have. Sometimes family is more than just DNA and just because you happen to share some doesn't entitle you to a relationship without good effort. Do what you can to be supportive and have faith that your husband is trying to do what is best for the family the two of you have created.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-28-2004
Tue, 12-28-2004 - 9:43am

Hi, ther,

Your mum in-law - sounds like mine! As soon as I started to be 'professioanl ' with her on a difficult subject and abit distant - that's works.I.e.: if she visits us ( which is ovten) I say her - please help yourself to a cup of te, coffee or jusice - you know where things are, instead of offfering and making one ( this simple jesture makes her feel superiour!) It is different on a proper occasion, even than I often ask my husband to take care of it.

Unfortuantely for me , I have another obstacle now - not with her, but a sister-in-law, who have a birthday on the same day as our mum-in-law , who drives a lux car and things she can get away giving me a cheap and nasty present on Xmas ( keeping my husband's presents nice). Anyway, this is a different question altogeher and I am sure somebody on iVillage will help with advise on her.

But what I want to say my mum-in-law behaviour better ( she knows not to fork her noise into our relationship now) - and she have no excuse to be unpolite to me - I have never lost my temper with her ( although I felt like). And My Xmas presents from her were great - a beutifull neclace from Svarovsky and other bits. So ignore her manipulation by putting it straight in a profeesional manner and spend you time on yourself. This is means respect. Good luck to you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-21-2004
Wed, 12-29-2004 - 5:51pm

I wish I'd listened when my DH told me his mother was always nuts, conniving and manipulative. I know better now. We have a full-on moratorium with her and my SIL(her protege). They are troubled and access to your son is not a good thing until she can behave. If she can't then, you do what you must. I wish I had known what they were saying to my daughter sooner. She is angry that they tried to convince her that I didn't love her and they did.

I'm standing my ground that no more than holidays and special occasions are necessary. Your family will be much happier without the unnecessary controversy. Remeber, misery loves company.

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