Don't know what to do with the in laws. AGAIN. Warning: a bit long


Hello everyone

First and foremost I have to warn you that this is a bit long, but if you have the time to read, I would greatly apprechiate it because my husband and I need a lot of help.

Almost a year ago my Step-mother in law put something on my facebook which I foundto be rather personal. It was about mine and my husband’s finances and it sounded very sarcastic and we were both very upset. I will admit I could have reacted differently, but I was very offended and angry. I replied to her telling her that I didn’t think it was funny and that she better not do anything like that ever again. Next thing I know, she deletes and blocks me from facebook.I made an attempt to get a hold of her a month later on her birthday. She ignored me. I sent her a text saying happy birthday. Didn’t even get a thanks. So I let it go. This was July 2012.

Let’s fast forward to September 2012. My husband was getting ready to go away to school until the end of April. He wanted to try to get this patched up before he left. He and I agreed that we could forgive and forget and move on but we needed to have some boundaries put in place. His father and stepmother live in the building beside us so he went to talk to them. He explained that we felt that there was a lot of ongoing issues which became bigger ones with much tension and that he wanted to get them resolved because life was short. He asked if they would come over and have dinner with us. His stepmom asked him if he felt that things were worse before she came along or after. He told her the truth, after. This woman at the time was 50 yrs old. She got up from her chair, crying, and screaming that everyone hates her, stomping her feet, and went to the room and slammed the door. A short time later she came out with a bag and walked out of the apartment, but came home later that night.

In October my husband flew home for 2 nights for thanksgiving. His Dad knew that he was coming home and would not stop texting him from the minute we got in the door after I picked him up from the airport. My husband called him and explained that he just got in the door to please be patient. He said he was spending the day with me, that he would call him the next morning, but even then, his father kept talking over him on the phone, barely letting him get 2 words in. His Father did come over the next night, drunk as a skunk with 2 beers in his hand. He stayed for only about 45 minutes and his wife texted him something like 3 times.

Christmas was getting close and we were stressed.We just wanted this to end. I tried talking to my Father in law online and over the phone. I will admit, I did say some stuff that I really should not have, about him, and about her. I’m just as much to blame. However I did apologize to him over the phone a few days before my husband came home for Christmas break. When my husband came home, I do believe it was around the 16th of Dec, he had a hard time getting a hold of his Dad. It took me sending him an email explaining to him that how he and his wife feel about me should not affect his relationship with his son. I said that I could put all my feelings aside and be civil for the sake of my husband. I also reminded him that my husband is in the Navy and if he was going to wait until we got a posting to try and patch things up, it would be a little late. He then texted my husband and agreed to meet him at the tavern up the street for some pool and a drink.
We all met at my Sister in law’s house up the street on Xmas Eve. We were sitting in the living room, however, not my husband’s stepmom. She went right into the bedroom and didn’t say a word or come out at all for the whole 3 hours. My father in law was half in the bag and was saying that she was tired and had not got much sleep. I felt she could have at least come out and said merry xmas but did not. If she wanted my father in law for something she would text his phone and he was literally 10 feet away.

When my husband’s stepsister got married in april I couldn’t attend because it was down in the carribean, but thy had a party when they came back. I was not asked to attend.

I ran into my father in law and step mother in law on good Friday on the way to church. He slowed down to talk to me, but she took off down toward the ocean. Sad because if she had of stayed beside him on the walkway I would have been polite and at least said hello and happy Easter to her. Anyway this was the first time I had seen my father in law in almost 2 months and it felt like I was talking to a stranger.

My husband came home on April 26th.Since he has been home my Father in law has not come over, called, or anything. My husband went over to talk to him a few days ago. He asked him why he hasn’t been in touch and he replied that he thought he’d give us some space. Also he and my husband work in the same building. My husband is a cook. He asked hi why he never sticks his head in the kitchen to say hi. My father in law used to work in that kitchen too about 15 years ago. He told him that he felt that he was never treated good when he worked there. Also his stepmom stayed in the bedroom most of the time and only came out to say hi once.

We don’t know what to do. My husband has tried talking to the both of them and gets no where. I apologized to my father in law, but step mother in law ignores me and won’t come near me. I have gone to therapy to learn how to grow a thicker skin, to work on my thinking, etc. I pray, but nothing. We just want this to end. We want to get long. We want peace. We would like for them to be involved in our children’s lives when we have some down the road. Any feedback,prayers, etc would be greatly apprechiated. Thanks.


the worst combination in a person is "rude" and "easily offended". What your stepmother-in-law did (commenting on your finances) was very rude and inappropriate, if she was a decent person, she would have realized it and offered an apology. I see that she also holds grudges so an apology will very likely never come. She also has a personality disorder as was evidenced by her hysterical reaction when your husband answered her question honestly. In an ideal world, we could have deep, meaningful, give-and-take, mutually enriching and edifying interpersonal relations with just about everyone. However, this is not possible with everyone. Ditto for his father from what I gather. You don't have to cut ties with these people if they aren't abusive, you just see them once every so often and stay on the surface. I deal with my father as if he were a distant uncle, I keep civil and cordial but nothing in the way of a true father-son relationship. Hope I was of help.

Praying for ya!

It’s taken 47 year of existence on this planet, but I have come to realise that I cannot control, nor am I responsible for, other people’s actions. It’s looks as though you have done all you can, and really the ball is the in-laws court.

Here are the first few lines of the Serenity Prayer (you can find the rest with a simple google search):

God, grant me the serenity to ACCEPT the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

God Bless.

THAT is my favorite prayer I even have a keychain with that text engraved :smiley:

I love the serenity prayer and say it often, thanks :wink:

We just want this to end. We want to get long. We want peace. We would like for them to be involved in our children’s lives when we have some down the road. Any feedback,prayers, etc would be greatly apprechiated. Thanks.

Yes, what you want is good and healthy, but it requires cooperation from your father in law and his wife, and they do not seem to want the same things you want, so they will not cooperate. You may have to learn to let go of your hopes regarding yoir family’s relationship with them, because it doesn’t seem to be something you can fix.

There are spoiled people out there who do not have personality disorders. There are people who fly off the handle easily and yet carry grudges when others act rashly who do not have personality disorders. Some people give themselves liberties that they give to no one else, and sometimes it isn’t a diagnosable condition so much as a malformed or under-formed conscience that is the problem. Maybe it is, but may it isn’t.

You can’t conclude, after all, that a horse that tries to kick you when you put a saddle onto it that it has a thing wrong with its temperament until you know what kind of training it has had. If the animal is pretty much straight off the range, well, that’s what can be expected. “Straight off the range” is essentially the kind of parenting some people got, and once your parents loose you on the world, how many of us evade the “remedial training” we so much need and deserve?

When around an insufficiently-civilized person, it is very much worthwhile to taste your words carefully and to err on the side of discretion before letting them out of your mouth. Choose your battles and pass over what you can pass over without abdicating your dignity or your boundaries. This is only sensible until you know that more than one of you will be doing that! Other than that, you cannot go through life blaming yourself that you can’t walk a mile on a carpet of eggs without breaking an eggshell.

Still, if an adult doesn’t take the part of the civilized world when their spouse is blowing it in the manners department, I wouldn’t get my hopes up that the errant spouse will ever be “broken to saddle”. You, OP, not even being the blood relative of the man she married, are really in no position to influence this situation, except to keep sparks out of the tinderbox. If MIL goes into the bedroom and won’t come out, act as you would if she were sick: express concern for her welfare, but besides that let her go and think that perhaps that is for the best.

We have been having on-going issues with my MIL (especially since my FIL passed away). We have offered to pay for our share of joint counseling, we have begged her to at least modify her methods of communication (she is P-A and we are direct). However, some people are just difficult. In my case, hubby and I didn’t want to deal with a mostly shallow, self-absorbed person who takes no pains to understand the difficulties we have raising a son with autism. We just had to stop verbal contact with her. It is sad, but we did what we could.

The other person or persons have to want to change as well.

Thanks very much for your input. We greatly apprechiate it. We will pray for you and your son.

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