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MIL - What to do?

Posted by on Dec. 5, 2012 at 12:21 AM
  • 25 Replies

My mother in law is lonely.  I know she's lonely.  I used to speak to her all the time, several times a day and then things went really sour about 4 years ago.  Then her husband passed away and I still don't think she forgives him for leaving her like that.  She berates everyone who attempts to have any type of conversation with her, pushes her family away.

I just found out that hubby is not the only child she does this to, she does it to all of them.  Then she friends me on facebook and she's restricted.  In other words she only sees the things that I put up as public for the world to see which isn't much, pics of my fish, funny little pictures of weird animals, etc.

She has gone from hateful to remorseful and yes I know she needs professional help.  She has hurt me and my family for years but hubby wants to have a relationship with her.  My stepson also lives with her and I did hear her tell him to tell me hi. 

I know she's lonely and I feel bad about that (yes I know not my problem) but should I attempt to speak to her?  I refuse the phone because you cannot log it so hubby can know EXACTLY what she says but is facebook chat ok?

by on Dec. 5, 2012 at 12:21 AM
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Replies (1-10):
sabrtooth1
by on Dec. 5, 2012 at 12:39 AM
1 mom liked this

Be a decent human being.  TALK to the woman.  Her son wants a relationship with his mother.  Don't stand in his way.  If you KNOW she needs professional help, then you know enough to not take her bitter comments to heart.  It won't kill you, and will put a little in the plus column when the final accounting comes.

fantasticfour
by Grumpy on Dec. 5, 2012 at 12:53 AM

I won't talk to her on the phone.  With everything that's been said and done I can be civil with her but I just feel like I am setting myself up to be shot in the foot.  She "extended" the olive branch a month or so ago when I asked her why she friended me, and then she proceeded to tell me what a pos I am.  I can handle her crap, it's hubby who takes it to heart.  She tells him all the time that he never cared about his father and that his father went to the grave hating him.  To me that's just about the meanest thing you could ever do to someone.

Quoting sabrtooth1:

Be a decent human being.  TALK to the woman.  Her son wants a relationship with his mother.  Don't stand in his way.  If you KNOW she needs professional help, then you know enough to not take her bitter comments to heart.  It won't kill you, and will put a little in the plus column when the final accounting comes.


sabrtooth1
by on Dec. 5, 2012 at 1:00 AM

You and your husband should be able to understand that his mother has a mental problem, and let it roll off your backs.  The day may come when age and dementia make YOU less than pleasant to be around also.  Would you like YOUR children to abandon you because you are ill?

fantasticfour
by Grumpy on Dec. 5, 2012 at 1:11 AM

No I wouldn't want my children to abandon me because of a mental illness but I also wouldn't want to be miserable every day.  I would want someone to insist I see a doctor about it or if I refused to admit a problem (like mil) I would want them to speak to my doctors on my behaf.

As far as abandoning her because of a mental illness, she took a few choice words my husband said about grounding his son for not turning in his homework, blew them all out of porportion, called the exwife and insisted on having custody changed to her (who was proven unfit) and even sent her gobs of money for it.  This was BEFORE she was showing the signs of someone who desperately needs greif counseling (before fil died).  She called me a child abuser because I sent my child to bed without supper one night for actually throwing the food at me.

I understand where you are coming from, but I don't want to talk to someone who is going to turn everything around on me, is only speaking to me to "get information" for the ex, and yell at me all the time.  Shouldn't I be allowed to be a little cautious?

Quoting sabrtooth1:

You and your husband should be able to understand that his mother has a mental problem, and let it roll off your backs.  The day may come when age and dementia make YOU less than pleasant to be around also.  Would you like YOUR children to abandon you because you are ill?


atlmom2
by Susie on Dec. 5, 2012 at 11:55 AM

Maybe write her a letter and see what happens. 

luckysevenwow
by Platinum Member on Dec. 5, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Baby steps seem like a good idea to me.

fantasticfour
by Grumpy on Dec. 5, 2012 at 2:58 PM

I did 2 years ago.  Things went from bad to worse.  Apparently I said something in there that wasn't nice (though no one can tell me what I said).

Quoting atlmom2:

Maybe write her a letter and see what happens. 


atlmom2
by Susie on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:00 PM

Maybe write another and tell her you are willing to wipe the slate clean if she is and start anew. 

Quoting fantasticfour:

I did 2 years ago.  Things went from bad to worse.  Apparently I said something in there that wasn't nice (though no one can tell me what I said).

Quoting atlmom2:

Maybe write her a letter and see what happens. 



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bizzeemom2717
by Jen on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:10 PM
I have to agree, I am just recovering from emergency surgery myself and reading through all of this it seems a little petty to me, she's your husband's mother, life is just too short. If you can't handle the mental illness, ect then don't but the back and forth stuff ? Idk, just be the better person, it's certainly not worth your stress. Idk, before this scary surgery I may have felt different even 2 days ago, but hugging and kissing my dh and kids before surgery yesterday, I hope if I'm ever a crazy lady one day my kids can still have a relationship with me. It's sad.

Quoting sabrtooth1:

Be a decent human being.  TALK to the woman.  Her son wants a relationship with his mother.  Don't stand in his way.  If you KNOW she needs professional help, then you know enough to not take her bitter comments to heart.  It won't kill you, and will put a little in the plus column when the final accounting comes.

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drfink
by Emily on Dec. 5, 2012 at 6:00 PM
1 mom liked this

Let your husband form his relationship with his mom.He is a grown up ,I know you love him and want to protect him from her harshness but he can take care of himself.If he chooses to be closer or further emotionally from her that is his to carry.I would keep all your communication with her in the open...no texting or calls just be FB with her.Ignore any crap ,,just be open about the trivial day to day stuff.Only be pleasant.

Finally realized there was nothing I could do to get my mil to like me.My  sil's that came before me came from active alcoholic families and they clung to my in laws and didn't look back.I was close to my grand parents and sister ,they lived in the next neighborhood so oddly I thought we should share holidays ,bdays etc with everyone.Anyway I learned to refuse to be sucked into her bitterness ,let my husband deal with her crap on his own ...never stood in their way.His mom ...his issues.

I hadn't seen my mil in several months when she died .My husband and children had often .I actually organized a couple of the visits ,picked out herMother's day gifts ,felt no guilt when she died and my husband and kids felt good about seeing her often.Protect yourself but let him find his own path with her.


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