WWJS (long)

Hi everyone!!

I’m new here but I joined with a purpose. I have a problem and I do not know what Jesus would say as advice but I truly want to do the right thing.

I got married a year 19 months back and my husband and myself have a 7 month old baby.
My husband has a widowed mother who I agreed to have stay with us before marriage. We got along okay, two women coming from very different upbringings and mind sets. I always tried to keep her happy (she likes to be spoilt and I did that by re-decorating her room, giving her spa treatments, etc) we were happy. Once I got pregnant she helped me out with whatever she could but always mentioned that she wants me to have a boy, and a normal delivery. These things upset me and My husband told her it is not in my hands.

Things didn’t go her way but I have a beautiful baby girl and I had her through an emergency c-section which my MIL was not happy about and in fact delayed the process by not giving her consent immediately, saying that I will be forever fat and unable to have more children. This obviously soured things between her and myself. To add to it she also refused to hold my baby saying that she is scared and that she has forgotten how to hold a new born child

When baby turned two months old and I was sick one day she made an issue when I didn’t come out of my room and she didn’t get to see my baby. Since my baby, things have gotten sour for us. Mostly because she is used to having her own daughter and my husband bend to her will and because I pretty much do what I want.

To cut things short, she involved herself in an argument my husband and I were having and decided to tell me what she felt about me on that day. Things like, I made a mistake marrying her son, if her husband was alive it wouldn’t be me as his wife, i am a bad mom and so on. This hurt me tremendously because this was just after a weekend that I treated her along with my mum to a spa day and showered her with gifts. It hurt me more coz my husband didn’t stop her when she was saying these things to me.

Hubby comes from a family that has ingrained it in his head that he is solely responsible for his mother- not his sister but only him and if he doesn’t house his mother and take care of her he will be disowned from his family, because GOD has commanded that we take care of his parents and we will be cursed if we do not do so.

Due to the friction between MIL and I, we are planning on staying separately from my MIL. She is a working woman, healthy and completely able to take care of herself. But family is against us shifting out coz it means we are not taking care of her.

What would Jesus say? What do I do?

Please don’t ask me to pray. Since all these issues I’m very quickly becoming detached from God. Also, my Husband and I have a relationship that is just based on co-existence now. Please help?

It would be nice to be able to follow the family traditions but not if it ruins your marriage. Since you say you are Catholic would you consider discussing this with your parish priest? Sometimes the opportunity to speak with someone trained to counsel in these situations can really help. Please try to continue to pray as the power of prayer is so great. I will pray for you and your husband to be able to repair your marriage and move forward together.


REMEMBER, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. Inspired with this confidence, I fly to thee, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother; to thee do I come; before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me. Amen.

I’m glad to hear that you are planning to live separately from MIL, but sad to hear that relations are so chilly between you and your husband.

If the question is WWJS–the answer is easy–leave mom and follow his vocation wherever it took him. Also, as everybody is going to quote to you, Genesis says, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.” You’ll notice the “leave” mother and father. You’ll also notice that in the 10 Commandments, it says to “honor” your father and mother, not house and financially support them forever when they aren’t infirm or in need.

It’s good that your husband has such a strong view of his family duties, but I think he needs to think harder about his duties to his wife and child. Could you go talk to a priest together?

If you decide to live close, how about trying a different home configuration for a year (but telling MIL that if it doesn’t work, you’ll need to live further apart)? Two adjoining duplexes or neighboring apartments might work for you, or maybe just living on the same block. There’s also the traditional “MIL apartment” arrangement, where the MIL apartment has its own kitchen (very important!). If you did that, you could have regularly scheduled MIL hours (for instance, maybe Sunday dinner until kid’s bedtime) and maybe some regularly scheduled yard work or emergency help. The key word here is “regularly scheduled.” It would need to be by mutual agreement.

Tell your husband that very few newlyweds could successfully live with a MIL. It’s not an impossible situation, but I think that newlyweds in particular should not rush into living with a MIL–it makes it very difficult to develop the spousal relationship when you can’t even have a disagreement about taking out the trash without a third party joining in.

Best wishes!

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