Help! Big flight with DF...

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by chebrutta, Jul 1, 2009.

  1. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    over future MIL. This is gonna be a rant and a half with some pleas for advice at the end.

    I do not like MIL. She's very outspoken, rude, obnoxious, doesn't let anyone else talk, butts into finances, interrogates... you get the idea.

    I tried really hard to like her, but it's been two years and it's just not getting any better. She keeps telling me to call her mom and I've told her I'm not comfortable with that - yet she insists on it and introduces me to people as her daughter.

    She is always making herself out to be someone to be pitied - and believe me, I hope to God I never know the pain of losing a child and I do feel for her - so FIL and DF are always giving in to her demands.

    BIL had a degenerative disease; DF was left alone and basically neglected for most of his childhood while she took care of BIL. He passed away 11 years ago and I really don't think she's dealt with it.

    I've never heard a baby/childhood story about DF. I know every one about his brother. I asked her before what DF was like as a kid. She just said, "Oh. You know. Fine." and launched into another BIL story. She's gone as far as to tell me that she wishes BIL were still alive because I'd be so much better suited to him :dizzy:

    She's asked me about our sex life before. Ew.

    We're living in FL, in dire financial straits, because she couldn't bear for him to move out of state when I wanted to and gave him a HUGE guilt trip about it. We stayed home, both lost our jobs, and he ended up moving 6 hours away for work. But MIL was happy. until he moved. Now it's my fault.

    We can't get married in Vermont like we wanted because his parents have two dogs that can't be boarded and don't travel well.

    And on and on and on and on...

    He has stood up for me on occasion (most recent argument over why I don't drive up to see him more often), but usually with pleas to understand just how hard his mom's life was, how much she misses BIL, and can I please just deal with her?

    Then she called earlier. They are planning to move to St. Augustine in 2 years. I was "instructed" to look for a teaching job there, since they want DF to be close by. I have no intentions of moving to St. Augustine. Until today, neither did DF. We were planning on moving to NC. I reminded her about NC. She told me she knows what's best for us... because she's OUR mother.

    Anyway, I called DF (pissed, I admit it) and he took his mother's side... that it would make her happy and she's had a tragic life, that she looks at me as her daughter, blah blah blah. We argue on occasion, but we've never screamed at each other the way we did earlier.

    I kind of feel like we're at a cross-roads right now. I love DF more than anything else, but I'm not going to have my life railroaded by his mother. I'm really mad that she has "control" over our lives right now and I REALLY hate the fact that he can't seem to stick to standing up to her. I'm not saying he's got to give into me every time, either... but his mom is becoming a huge issue.

    So. Please. Help. Relationship advice. MIL advice. Anything.
     
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  3. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Wow!:hugs: Have you thought about couples therapy? I don't see it getting any better, you will always live your life around keeping your MIL happy.
     
  4. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Oh, my. You HAVE to work this out before you get married. Seriously, she's not going to change so something has to give. You shouldn't have to sacrifice your career, dreams, wishes because of your future MIL. Consider a SERIOUS discussion with df about your concerns for the future, how always putting aside your wishes as a couple will impact your relationship (and probably already is). Couples therapy might be a good idea but it will only work if you both buy into it...it's really not about his mom, it's about your relationship being a priority. So sorry, I know this can be a BIG issue in families...my MIL and FIL live 4 hours away so even though MIL can be a little 'passive aggressive' it doesn't wear away at us the way it might if we lived closer.
     
  5. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    We've actually agreed to couples therapy (whenever we're finally together again)... and a BIG part of me wants to move far away so she WON'T be a daily part of our lives. I'm more jittery around her than the time I found a cottonmouth on the porch.

    My dad doesn't particularly care for DF, either, but he keeps quiet and plays nice when he's around. It helps to get a couple of beers into the two of them and a couple of fishing poles in hand, too... but there really isn't any such ice-breaker for me and his mom.
     
  6. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    I agree go see a therapist. Last summer my family was having a huge issue with my sister's bf. My dad, mom, sister and myself went to talk with the therapist. And we are all doing so much better.
     
  7. melnm

    melnm Companion

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    Oh that sounds awful! I think your best bet would be to live as far away as possible! I agree, you need to work this out before you get married. And I hope you are able to get it all straightened out with your fiance. I know dealing with in-laws can be difficult sometimes.
     
  8. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    Therapy, good idea.
    He must stand up for you, always. He may not agree with you, but he can't let you be bullied.
     
  9. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Can I play Dear Abbey? Like some of the other posters have said, things are not going to change. If anything, they will get worse when you get married because BF will not be on his best behavior like when you are courting. BF has not learned that you are his priority, not his mother. I wouldn't wait until you are together to begin counseling, I would go now. You need to learn how to deal with MIL. She also needs some serious help, but probably would resist the idea of counseling because then she would lose the martyr status.
    If you want to get married in VT...go for it. This is the beginning of your new life and she has to learn to live with that. Give in to all her demands now and you will be miserable in that marriage.
    As far as MIL's tragic life..I feel sorry for her and I know firsthand the grief she feels upon losing a child. (We lost our son suddenly 2 years ago) I'm certainly not going to tell someone how they should move through the grieving process, but she has gone completely overboard and is trying to drag the rest of the family down with her.
     
  10. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    This is a huge red flag! Get the counseling. Make it happen even if you have to drive up to his area every week. This has to be addressed before you commit your life to him.

    What I have seen over the years is that it is best for a new married couple to move away from their families for a while, so they can focus on becoming "one" and being their own family, with their own way of doing things. You two have to work together then stand together. Yep.
     
  11. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    I completely agree!! I would go ahead and get married in VT as well because that's what both of you want. You give in to all she demands and she'sgoing to think she can continue to dictate your lives for you. I've been married to dh for 7 years, together almost 10 and I'm still not comfortable calling my MIL 'mom' and she understands that. My sister currently lives with her MIL and she's miserable!!!!!!! It has really put a strain in her marriage.
     
  12. yarnwoman

    yarnwoman Cohort

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    Just read your post to my mom (65 yrs old) and she said write her back and tell her to RUN!

    You see your story sounds just like my biological grandmother. She even went so far as to rearrange the house when my mom was at work so the house was set up just like hers. She instructed my mom how to feed her son etc. My mom and Biological father have been divorced for over 33 yrs.
     
  13. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I think it might help if you make your husband see that giving into every desire she has is only enabling her to continue to live a tragic and grief-striken life. HE is not allowing her to move through the grieving process.
     
  14. DallasTeacher

    DallasTeacher Companion

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    I agree with the RUN! If your df won't/can't realize that he doesn't owe his mother his entire life, you will be living with her wishes for as long as she lives. It's not something you can really argue about because when tempers get involved, the real issues get hidden. It's not about moving to ______, but allowing another person to determine your life as a couple. Is he feeling guilty that he is alive while his brother is deceased? Your posting reads like someone who hasn't cut the apron strings. I would be very, very leery of marrying someone who didn't put my wants and wishes first.
     
  15. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Especially since you are not asking for anything unreasonable! You have a dream location for a wedding - people usually bend over backwards to accomodate the bride and groom and make their day special; you want to move to an area where you can both get a job, what is unreasonable about that?

    I just have a sore spot with controlling people. I was not able to deal with them for so many years of my life until I started having ulcers! I spent many years like you said, as nervous as if there were a snake at my feet! When I got the ulcers, I started changing. Then I finally hit overload, and went into my "not gonna take it anymore!" stage. Now I am more balanced, but IT IS painful to stand up and tell controlling people you are not going down that road anymore.

    I really believe in Love and Logic. It works fairly well with difficult adults. I had to use it recently when a "friend" freaked out on me in public in front of my kids. So weird. This was someone I have bent over backwards for a million times, truly, and there was no basis for the freak out. sheesh.

    You have to ask yourself if you want to live like this for the rest of your life, and yes, it will get worse after the wedding unless your DF develops a backbone, sorry, and also starts refusing to let his mother control him. It is very difficult and painful at first, but once you start feeling empowered and in control of your own life it is so wonderful and freeing! And usually the controlling people just have to learn their lesson the hard way, but they will learn it if you stick to your guns.

    Glad you guys are getting the counselling. That is terrific!
     
  16. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    She sounds like a friend's mother. This woman has controlled our friend's life for a good 25 years now, throughout their whole marriage. It's a wonder the marriage has survived.

    Think very, VERY carefully about marrying this man. Loving him isn't enough. You have to be able to live with him and with the knowledge that he's always putting someone else's wishes above yours.

    When you go into labor, she'll pull out her back and need his help.

    Christmas Day will be spent at her house, not letting your kids play with their gifts.

    Mother's Day will be about HER, never YOU.

    I'm very fortunate that my Mother in Law isn't like this, but I've seen it from afar... it isn't pretty.
     

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