Thread: Dealing with my live-in in-laws
Dealing with my live-in in-laws
Okay, so here goes my story after yet another big session of outbursts between in-laws and me.
INTRODUCTION (all characters based in New Delhi, India)
Father-in-Law (FIL) - a 58 yr old man with a job and a mental condition - Bipolar Affective Disorder (BAD) that makes him act way too extreme in every situation
Mother-in-Law (MIL) - a 63 year old stay-at-home, manipulative woman with no life of her own really. Just keeps acting in weird, egoistic ways all the time, fills up FIL with half made-up, exaggerated things and causes him to burst all the time
Brother-in-Law (BIL) - mostly out-of-town, harmless; cheerful
Husband - out-of-town 4-5 days every 2 weeks, very loving, supportive and understanding
Baby - 16 month old little baby boy who is growing up to understand and pick things up faster than I ever imagined
Maid - Full-time maid - 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Ours was a love marriage with much convincing of parents (in-law), who were against it until the time wedding functions began. And then, they finally gave in, we got married, stayed in Mumbai for a bit and went on to Netherlands to stay. In our four years of marriage, when I was 7 months pregnant, we thought it was great to have the child grow up with his/her grandparents. So we came back to live with in-laws 1.5 years ago.
I do everything I possibly can to keep my in-laws happy, but I have not managed to keep them happy yet. I start my day at 5 a.m., cook for everyone - 2 meals for in-laws, hubby and 4 for my son, send my hubby off to work, get my son ready, give him a massage and a bath, give him his first meal and then leave for work at about 9:30 a.m. and come back at 5-6 p.m. During that time, my son stays with my MIL. And then after I am back, I like to spend all my time with my child until next day, and I think it's fair.
But my MIL and FIL (in-laws) have a deep-rooted belief that I am incapable of doing anything well. Their basic problem is that I take care of my son more than I take care of them. Which is fair too according to me because my son is far more dependent on me than my in-laws are.
Right now (today), my son has had conjunctivitis for a full week and I have been so worried that I have taken off from work all of this week to put my son's eye drops on time (because MIL conveniently forgets when she has to do it). Although I made all food as I do everyday, MIL's problem is - that for whatever reason I've stayed home, why have I not gone after her asking about her health, meals, needs blah blah blah all day (I did that twice btw at breakfast and lunch time, but that is not enough)
Now FIL, who is really another MIL only. Anyway, he sent a bouquet of flowers for a neighbor's daughter's birthday today at about 11:00 a.m. that I had to deliver. My son was really cranky all day and it was such a task to put his eye drops (9-doses a day). So I missed delivering it in the morning, but I gave it to the birthday girl at about 4-4:30 p.m. with a detailed apology on why I could not get it to her earlier even when FIL had sent it in the morning.
A delay of about 5 hours - I say big deal - she still received it on her birthday. It's not like I missed the day or delivered it at a weird hour.
Nonetheless, FIL first blasted me on phone from his office for the delay. Never mind. Then he came home and started shouting all over again about how the delay caused him so much heartache that he almost had a heart-attack and died. He struggled with the ache for over an hour (because the bouquet din't reach in the morning!!, sure dude, I believe you)
Then he shouted about why I hadn't bothered asking about MIL's health and needs every hour of the day, even though the house maid was around all day and was regularly asking MIL about whatever she needed.
Throughout the day, the two times I went to ask MIL about breakfast and lunch, I asked her if she could see any improvement in my child's eyes. To which she replied, I can't say. Not even once did she or FIL bother to inquire about how my son is doing. The only response from my MIL was an ego tantrum that she would not keep my son for 1/2 hour while I go and take a bath. I had to send him out at the door with the maid in the Delhi, June heat so he would let me go to the bathroom.
Then FIL comes home, has an exchange of words with MIL and then bursts out at me - event 1. All the while, I kept very politely apologising about it all (the damn birthday bouquet and not being a nag to MIL), and I kept saying this will not happen again.
Event 2 - caustic remarks from FIL - "You make so many mistakes that I have started feeling embarassed to point all of them out to you. Sorry is your biggest excuse. You can't do anything in life because you have no life left. All you can ever see is your son......"
".....You are only and only a good mother, and nothing else. You are not a good Daughter-in-law, not a good sister, not a good friend, not a good wife. Nobody is happy with you - not us, not your husband"
All the while my son was in my lap listening to all of it. But do they care a damn!
THAT'S IT - That was the final straw. Who the hell are they to comment on what exists between me and my husband!! Just who the hell they are. And this is not the first time. They have made such comments, especially on me and my husband, at least 15 times in the past if not more. And they do not have the right to. If my husband has a problem, he will tell me, not them!
So, after all this for the 20th time probably in the last 1.5 years, I picked-up the courage and said "Do not go there, you have no right to comment on what exists between me and my husband. Because you don't know"
FIL said (sarcastically) - I am Sawrrryyyy!!
I said - Yes you should be, because this is not the first time.
That's it. Big Fight. I just picked my son and locked us up in our room. MIL and FIL kept banging the door and shouting for something like 5 minutes - "You will tell us what we should be sorry for. That is how you talk to your elders. That is how you talk to your in-laws. Telling them they should be sorry!!..... and so on"
Not even once did my in-laws bother to check on my child's health or medicines or well-being all day. While my husband, away on tour in Bombay, has constantly been with me on phone enquiring about our little one.
I doubt keeping my son in this kind of a hostile environment for his mom is going to do him any good - the reason we came back to live with them in the first place.
Everytime such an event of outbursts happens, I usually go and apologise even if I don't believe I am at fault, just to keep some harmony in the house. But this time I have had it. I don't want to go to them and say anything. For all the non-receptivity they have and the feeling that they are incapable of doing anything wrong, I might as well bang my head against a wall.
I have decided I can't take this any more. I am tired of giving in. And I am so going to tell my husband to shift out as soon as he is back after three days for the sake of our son and my sanity. I don't want to end up like my FIL telling people that a bouquet delivered 5-hours late almost killed me with a heart-attack! Clearly, staying with my MIL for ~30 years has had its take on poor FIL.
I have lost all respect and sensitivity for my in-laws. I am afraid, if I continue to live here, I will very soon start hating them altogether. And I don't want to raise my son in a hostile and hateful house. And my in-laws do such things only and only when my husband is away. Obviously, they have to cut-out an ever-so-nice-and-accommodating picture in front of my husband!
So that's it. I am just worried that my husband is going to be so torn leaving his parents. Because for everything said and done, they do love my husband and my husband does want to be with them. I have tried with all I could in the last 1.5 years to get myself to adjust to my in-laws. But clearly, whatever I do, is wrong, totally wrong as long as they are not what I am thinking of and working for all day. I don't know how to go about it.
I am still going to wake-up early tomorrow and do the cooking etc. I know for a fact that my in-laws are not going to touch the food I cook. But I still will.
Any suggestions, ideas, similar stories anyone?
It did help to put it all down here as I can't talk to anyone in such detail yet (not until husband dear is back).
I wish I could fast forward these three days and be with my husband!
--------------------Ye thi ek aur Bahurani_ki_Kahani-------------------------------
I don't know what your name is.. But I feel very pity on you..
My suggestion is that, donít make your husband to worry more about you and his parents.. Donít complain about your in-laws to him again and again.. He may believe you or he may not because of his love towards his parents..
No you have to take care of your kid.. The best solution is that convince your husband to search a new home for three of you.. Stay away from your in-laws.. Let them realize about you.. And donít listen to their words.. Donít care about them at all.. Act in front of your husband as if you are taking so much care of your in-laws..
If you move to a new house, you can live peacefully there by spending good time with your kid..
All the best for your peaceful life..
I did speak to my husband, and so did my in-laws about this latest incident. My husband says that I should give it at least two more months and not reply back or show my anger to his parents at all during this time, whatever they say or do. Even if after two months things remain as bad, or become worse, he has agreed that we will move on. So that's that, I hope all this will end soon.
But you are right, I should not complain to my husband about his parents. They are his parents after all. And to him, they are really nice.
Thanks once again for your reply, it does make a lot of sense to me.
i do agree with Bhaargavi suggestion moving to a new house, but let us not forget about the baby. you have said that you will will leave for you work 9:30 a.m. and you will only be back after 5 or 6 p.m. moving to a new house may look lika a good idea but you cannot leave your babya lone at home alone I GUESS YOU HAVE TO THINK ABOUT IT.
Yuvraj you are correct..
Bahurani, I donít know why you are going for a job by leaving your baby at home?? This is the time your baby needs you.. Not only you but many parents are doing the same mistakes.. Why you are giving birth to your baby when you canít spend time with them? Many Parents leave their babies at baby care centers or they make their in-laws or Parents to take care.. But this is not the correct way to bought up your child.. Father doesnít have any options.. He has to earn money to secure the life of his family.. But it is not necessary for a mother to go for a job.. She can take care of her baby.. She can spend time with her baby..
Bahurani, if your husband is earning handsome amount, then you can quit your job and take care of your baby.. Try to spend time with your in-laws.. Because they are growing old and may need some support.. I hope you can support them.. Donít get angry for any matter.. Sort the matters coolly.. Try this for at least one week.. See the changes..
Hi Narmada, going for a job is important, because you never know when times change. And working and independence give you more choices in life. And it's when I spend only about 15 hours at home, we have so many differences. Imagine 24 hours at home!! :O... I know my son needs me, but then, my in-laws love him dearly too, except in their ego fits and that is only when I am around. So I am sure while I am away, my son is happy here (and me too because I get some space)..... We should never have come back to stay here with them. But done is done, let's see what happens .
Yuvraj, true. I guess this is the best arrangement for my son. If only I would learn to control myself and not say or show what I really feel.
After reading your story I have few things to tell you. In law's problem is existing in many houses. Though we are good to them in all the ways the young ladies are suffering a lot. I would tell you one thing is please don't panic for unwanted things. Take care of your husband and your little ones as well. They are the very important people in your life and remaining are always the third parties. As the time goes things would definitely change and let's keep a positive thought on it. All the very best f or your future and live happily in a new home with your husband and kid.
thanks Surya.rockstar... that is a helpful comment, trying to move on