Xmas predicament

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-02-2004
Xmas predicament
Thu, 12-02-2004 - 8:06pm

Without going into all the details, i have been living with my partner for >12 months and together over 2 yrs. My relationship with the IL's has always been rocky. Last Xmas MIl and Dh had a huge fight which hurt him very badly. At the start of the year, i was told i was not invited along to MIL b'day. This was at a point when we were all supposed to be making an effort to get along. Frankly, i told her exactly what i thought of her and haven't spoken to her since except when she has picked fights with dh or me.

My Dh is a bit of a mummys boy (only child) and claims to have a close relationship with her. Since we've been dating this relationship has changed and they always fight over me. He has to visit her every week for dinner (to which i have never been invited) and she is always undermining 'us' and our relationship. I have told him he needs to change the way he deals with her, but he always tries to avoid conflict with her- so nothing changes

I know it hurts him that i dont get along with the IL, but personally i dont care about them. I've accepted that my relationship with the IL will never be friendly and i try to do what is best for DH and I. This year for Xmas, we thought if both our families came to us on Xmas day we wouldnt be alienating anyone. The IL decided to go out for lunch instead, but not without making Dh extremely guilty for not going with them. Now they want us to get together on Boxing day. I dont want to go as i hate MIL and i know she will end up picking a fight, if not that day later on. I'm getting pressured from Dh to go as he wants the "happy family" and doesnt / wont accept that it will never be.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-21-2004
In reply to: nohope_1
Fri, 12-03-2004 - 3:14pm

sorry to hear about all this. If can be hard...for the most part I get along with my IL's, that is until they decide they don't agree with me about something..they have very strong opinions (and you better agree with them).

Sorry I don't have to much advice to give, but maybe you should talk to your DH, because he should stuck up for you, he should not let his mother pick fights with you. Maybe you should go with your husband for the family get together, but maybe the two of you could come up with a code word, for when you have had a enough and would like to leave. (I don't know just an idea.)

cl for Ask Fit By Friday
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-23-2003
In reply to: nohope_1
Fri, 12-03-2004 - 3:33pm

I think ihappy's idea is a great one. You and your husband can decide on a signal or codeword and run when MIL starts to pick a fight. If you have to use it, then afterward thank your husband, but don't complain about the in-laws. Just to be sure that you give him positive feedback if he follows through on the agreement.

>>>>I'm getting pressured from Dh to go as he wants the "happy family" and doesnt / wont accept that it will never be.<<<<

Have you actually discussed his expectations and how they will not be fulfilled? It might be a good idea if you haven't. Even if at first he tries to cling to it, you can plant the seed that eventually leads to him giving up the expectation of "a happy family". Be gentle and compassionate if you still need to do this.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-02-2003
In reply to: nohope_1
Mon, 12-06-2004 - 2:44am

MIL needs to understand that you two are together and that is the way it is. I would go to any and all family gatherings, if you are not invited the DH should not go. I agree with the PP about having a code word when you have had enough.

And as far as the weekly dinners you should be invited or they should be cancelled.

I know how hard this must be on you and you have my complete sympathy, but you have got to work these things out with DH and stand by each other or nothing is going to get any better and this could end up causing unrepairable damage to you and DH's relationship!


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
In reply to: nohope_1
Fri, 12-10-2004 - 5:34pm

I agree with the other posters - you should go, but use it as a bargaining tool with your DH. Say you are happy to make an effort for his sake if he he will make an effort for your sake and a) agree to stick up for you more constructively and b) either reduce the frequency of the dinners with his mother, or make sure you are invited. You are a couple now, and both you, DH and the in-laws have to learn to deal with that!

good luck