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PPD and In-laws

Posted by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 9:39 AM
  • 18 Replies

My husband and I dated for several years prior to getting engaged and married. During that time I met his mother and father once. Over the period of approximately 6 years I just came to accept that his family did not like to be involved and that I was just one more of the many things that he would keep from them (he occasionally drinks, his friend had a child outside of wedlock, etc.). Then we got married and in the same year had a child and everything changed.

Now my husband’s family insists on visiting us and us visiting them every 3 months (we are a 2.5 hour flight and 10 hour drive away). During each visit his parents state that in India the women cook and clean. My husband and I both work. I am primarily responsible for feeding, clothing, and bathing our child. I typically vacuum, dust, do laundry, and clean the restrooms weekly. I take their comments personally. I have told them on multiple occasions that I do not enjoy cooking and that my husband takes that role. However, every time they come the comment remains. When we go over to his parents’ house they always have Indian food some of it mild and others not. I pick out what I can eat which is typically rice and some type of mild vegetable; however, I am never fully satisfied and go get snacks for myself later. Each time I am told by his mother that she works with this woman who can eat all types of Indian foods. I again take this personally. I was not raised on Indian cuisine and feel that their disappointment that I do not like many of the dishes is a way of expressing disappointment in me.

Recently his cousins relocated to our area. Every time we see his cousin he states that he knows my husband is missing his mother food and that when he starts to craves Indian food to let him know, that his wife knows how to cook. Despite my best ability I also take this personally. I feel like his comment is pointed and a way of saying I cannot provide properly for my husband. I have expressed my concern to my husband and he continuously tells me that his parents do not mean it that way, that I take things to personally, and that I am imagining things.

I have been diagnosed with post-partum depression and am taking anti-depressants. I constantly battle with whether I am crazy and these comments are not hurtful or whether I have a legitimate reason to be upset. I feel like I have no support from my husband and his family and that I am being rejected by both.

I know some of it is the PPD, but I really do not think that all of it is. I love my husband; however, his parents actions make me feel a sense of loss. I never expected to have strong bond with my in-laws, but I did not expect to feel constantly attacked by them. I do not know what to do and how to overcome this situation. The more my husband and I talk about it, the more we drift apart. What would you do?

by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 9:39 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Greenbird15
by Bronze Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:11 PM
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Just know that a lot of people judge everything that you do when you have your first child. Please don't take it personally. In India things are done a certain way-my friend said that you would have to live with your in-laws and OBEY them, they would control every part of your life and even be in charge of your child and how your child is raised. You would have absolutely no power or say in your life or your child's. Enjoy your child and this precious time! My advice is the best come back is to just enjoy your life, they may know that they are getting under your skin. Kudos for getting treatment for PPD you should be proud of yourself! If you have another baby in the future judgy people should back off a bit. I saw everyone judging my SIL when my nephew was born several yrs ago & experienced it when our 7yo was born. I have an almost 11mo old now & since its like I've been there done that no one is whispering behind my back or questioning my decisions.

Marivilla
by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:23 PM
1 mom liked this
Be honest with your husband and tell him how you feel. I would also be direct with his family and tell them what they're saying is rude.
Jesser215
by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:29 PM
3 moms liked this
What does his friend having a baby out of wedlock have to do with anything??? Anyway. Yes, I think they're being rude and judgemental. I'd be irritated too. It's kinda like when my bil used to come over and say your basement is a mess. Umm thanks for telling me something I already know! Go clean it of it bothers u so much! People are so rude.
GorgeyM
by Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:38 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting Greenbird15:

Just know that a lot of people judge everything that you do when you have your first child. Please don't take it personally. In India things are done a certain way-my friend said that you would have to live with your in-laws and OBEY them, they would control every part of your life and even be in charge of your child and how your child is raised. You would have absolutely no power or say in your life or your child's. Enjoy your child and this precious time! My advice is the best come back is to just enjoy your life, they may know that they are getting under your skin. Kudos for getting treatment for PPD you should be proud of yourself! If you have another baby in the future judgy people should back off a bit. I saw everyone judging my SIL when my nephew was born several yrs ago & experienced it when our 7yo was born. I have an almost 11mo old now & since its like I've been there done that no one is whispering behind my back or questioning my decisions.

Thanks Greenbird for the reply. I appreciate your kind words. I understand that judgment will happen. My main struggle is thinking that my son will be exposed to the misogynistic behavior and watching my husband hide during these interactions. I was not raised in India. Quite the opposite, I was raised in an all female household (by my grandmother and with my sister). I was taught to be independent and stand my ground.  I wish I had the opportunity to get to know my husband's family prior to our marriage. If I had I seriously doubt I would have gone through with the marriage, as I learned early in life you will not be happy if you surround yourself with negative people. That being said I take marriage seriously. I made a commitment to my husband and I have a duty to my son. I am seeking a way to deal with the situation while continuing to honor these comittments. 

GorgeyM
by Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:45 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting Jesser215: What does his friend having a baby out of wedlock have to do with anything??? Anyway. Yes, I think they're being rude and judgemental. I'd be irritated too. It's kinda like when my bil used to come over and say your basement is a mess. Umm thanks for telling me something I already know! Go clean it of it bothers u so much! People are so rude.

I say that because I have come to realize over time that his parents are very conservative and he hides anything that could be considered "inappropriate" from them. I add it as I am not familiar with this family dynamic. After around 20 yo I did not feel the need to hide anything from my grandmother. Our relationship is much more tell me about your life and I will tell you about mine. I no longer fear that I will receive discipline from her and know that she would never stop speaking to me over something as trivial as me not following her direct orders. I show her respect by showing her who I am and allowing her to get to know the person she raised. 

mama_danetta
by Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:45 PM
1 mom liked this
Why isn't your husband sticking up for you?
Jesser215
by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:48 PM
1 mom liked this
Oh ok, I understand now. That through me off. Yeah I don't tell certain family members things just because I don't wanna be lectured, I'm an adult. I can drink and get tattoos if I want to. My grandma will call me if I post something she doesn't like on my fb. Now, I still love her, and am very close to her. That's just how she is.

Quoting GorgeyM:

Quoting Jesser215: What does his friend having a baby out of wedlock have to do with anything??? Anyway. Yes, I think they're being rude and judgemental. I'd be irritated too. It's kinda like when my bil used to come over and say your basement is a mess. Umm thanks for telling me something I already know! Go clean it of it bothers u so much! People are so rude.

I say that because I have come to realize over time that his parents are very conservative and he hides anything that could be considered "inappropriate" from them. I add it as I am not familiar with this family dynamic. After around 20 yo I did not feel the need to hide anything from my grandmother. Our relationship is much more tell me about your life and I will tell you about mine. I no longer fear that I will receive discipline from her and know that she would never stop speaking to me over something as trivial as me not following her direct orders. I show her respect by showing her who I am and allowing her to get to know the person she raised. 

belle2780
by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 2:07 PM
1 mom liked this
My husband is Nepali but he hides certain things as well from his family, the ones who are more open minded are the ones I have met and despite the language barrier we get along very well. His oldest brother and some of the others I will not meet because they don't get along and dislike me because I am white. A few of his family members even commented when our kids were born that they hoped they were his and he didn't say nothing back to them which had me jumping on his ass because he was sending them money that came from our joint account. Sorry you don't get to take my money and doubt the kids are his. I am not familiar with Indian and Nepali cooking but when my inlaws do visit, I offer to help cook as the females do a lot of the cooking and depending who is visiting I will add to the grocery list to make sure there is food they can eat. However my inlaws treat me with the same respect I give them, they eat more vegetarian or seafood dishes or chicken,
I can't cook their dishes as I grew up on Italian mostly for homecooked meals but they always try what I cook just like when they cook I try some of their food. My husband tones the spices down if he is cooking and knows I will eat. Occasionally he gets in a frame of mind where he feels I should do everything and he shouldn't have to do more then mow the lawn but I put him back in his place and tell him if he loves Nepal so much there's the door but this is America and in our house if he has 3 Days off one of those days are going to be spent helping me because we are a partnership.
fullxbusymom
by Bronze Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 2:37 PM
1 mom liked this

Yes, you are being overly sensitive and taking things way to personally. I don't think one single thing said was an insult to you. 

GorgeyM
by Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 3:01 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting fullxbusymom:

Yes, you are being overly sensitive and taking things way to personally. I don't think one single thing said was an insult to you. 

My husband agrees with you. The first time his mother told me she works with a woman who eats all kind of indian foods, I told her I am sorry I do not eat everything you cook. She remained silent and we did not discuss it further. The same situation happened this time. 

As you have similar views as my husband how would you expect me to communicate my feelings of exclusion and what could I say to you to make you feel as if I should no longer be compared to the friend?

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