Sister in-law a bully


Hello Everyone,
My sister in-law lives 200 miles away, is 10 year older than my husband and being a half sister was not raised with my husband.
He is not close with her and though i have always invited her almost never attended our family functions. We were rarely invited to her families functions either. I have a father who left our family and married the woman he was having an affair with so I know that sometimes family members are not close so I never questioned my husband relationship with her. Over the 25 years of our marriage she has never been anything but rude to me, ignoring me not offering me a beverage(she offered my husband one) when I come to visit, trying to leave me out of conversations, even not saying goodbye to me when she visited my home (she walked right past me).
Now she has started to ask if my 23 year old son is a homosexual because he is not dating. I just can’t take her attacking my son like that. I really want no contact with her except for an unavoidable sistuation like a wedding or funeral. I no longer want this woman in my home and will not visit her in hers. My husband just says she is crazy . I know not visiting her will add fuel to her fire but it won’t bother me because I won’t have to deal with her again. Should I cut off contact with her?


Maintain your charity, but you don’t have to be a glutton for punishment.


Keep your distance, blow off her ranting, and don’t think of it again.

BTW, don’t forget to pray for her… HARD. :slight_smile:


I agree with Shiann–keep your distance.

And keep her in your prayers! :thumbsup:


Tell your husband to man up and to stop making excuses for her! You and your children are more of a priority than she is. Men are called to Lead, Protect, and to Provide. He should be protecting you and your children by telling his sister that her attitude towards you is not welcome in your home. End of story!


She would never be welcome in my home again.

You are completely justified in cutting all contact with this person.


Quietly cut off contact with her. If you tell her, or any other family members why, she’ll use that as ammunition against you. It might be better if you just disappear into the woodwork.

If she invites you anywhere, politely inform her that you have plans for that day. (Your plan is to not spend time with her! :smiley: )

The less said, the better here. She needs to see that she can’t get a reaction from you.


Thank you all for your advice. I did feel uncharitable about cutting her off and I think my husband will be disappointed that I can’t overlook her rudeness but in 25 years I have tried and I feel she is just getting more abusive. The attack on my son’s chastity was just the straw that broke the camels back. I do and will continue to pray for her. I also feel badly that this will cut me off from her grown children who have begun to include me in an occassional family event. I know that they also see their mother’s rude behavior but they seem to be willing to excuse it as well. I know this because when I attended her son’s wedding, I apologized to her daughter for not being able to attend her wedding. I couldn’t attend because of the cost of the air fare (it was very expensive and we didn’t have it) I also mentioned to her that her mother got extremely upset and called us to tell us off. I left out the details( her mother was screaming at me and saying that she could never forgive us for not attending her daughters wedding.) As I later learned no family, except the immediate was able to attend because of the expense.She said “mom is just like that” So I know that behavior is something that they are aware of. And I don’t know them well enough to ask why this is acceptable to them. I will pray for their whole family. Thanks again for your input.



Just out of curiosity, has anyone ever asked her why she does or says the things you described? Or is she just too goofy to approach that way?

You know, I think I would be ok with having a relationship with the children and not with her. Is that possible?


I have a very similar situation in my marriage. My sister-in-law has always been disrespectful to me, and for many years I simply avoided her as much as possible. In fact, my husband had no idea that his sister and I don’t particularly like each other until about five years ago.

She and her family were visiting us during Thanksgiving that year. My only son, who was 19 at the time, was spending his last few days with us before leaving for his first military deployment to the middle east. Three of my son’s friends, also marines, were spending Thanksgiving with us too because they were unable to get leave to be with their own families for the holidays. After a long Thanksgiving Day, after the rest of our guests had gone home, we gathered to watch a movie.

My sister-in-law and I have vastly different political, social, and religious views. I tend not to push my views on others, yet my sister-in-law uses these differences to try and draw me into debate, which I usually don’t engage in.

What she did was to begin making derrogatory comments about the United States military and inferring that only a lesser class of people and those who are “too dumb for college” join the military. She made these comments brashly in front of everyone, including my son and his three colleagues who were invited guests in my home. I reacted to her comments and an extremely uncomfortable argument ensued. My sister-in-law defended her comments to the bitter end, and refused to apologize or even acknowledge that her comments were unnecessary and provocative. The tension in the home for the rest of the evening caused my son and his friends to leave and not return until my sister-in-law had left town.

She is no longer welcome to stay in my home. Now, however, five years later, my husband has invited her to visit. Although he agreed that she and her family will have to stay in a hotel, I still will have to put on a smile and be a gracious host in the interest of domestic tranquility. She is, after all, my husband’s sister. One thing is certain, though… she is not on thin ice. There is in fact no ice. She must behave or she must leave. Period. And I think that’s OK.


I have one of these too but she lives too close for me to cut contact so I choose to have very minimal contact and my life has become more peaceful for it.

I am constantly praying for her to let go of her anger and find peace but otherwise I have given it to God to handle as He sees fit and going on with my own life.


Quietly refuse to see her. 200 miles is about 4 hours drive even if you’re both right off the highway.

If she wants to see you she can drive, and then you lay down the rules of law in your house.

And on a side note. It’s kinda uncommon for a good looking 23yo not to be dating this day in age. Although my aunts and uncles were purely caring people they asked the same about my brother.


Thank you purplesunshine for your input. But I’m curious. What did you say when your Aunt and Uncle asked this question about your brother?
My SIL had her son’s girlfriend sleeping over at age 16. I witnessed this once when the two groggy teens came down the stairs together at my SILs home. I think serious dating should take place when one is ready to start looking for a spouse. 16 seems young to me. I agree 23 is old enough to be dating but I leave this up to my son.


If your son were a daughter I might be concerned but since dating is about looking for a mate then there could be a couple of things:

  1. Your son is involved in the military and has not started a signifigant relationship due to the number of deployments and schools and stability in his life

  2. Your son has not meant one he wants to bring home to mom

  3. Your son might feel called to another vocation

Why does everyone have to jump on the gay/straight bandwagon?


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