Mother in law too interfering

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  • #38481
    Profile photo of Carly C
    Carly C
    Member

    Am I being over sensitive here, but my mother in law is driving me insane. She treats my husband like a baby, he’s given her a key to our house so she lets herself in and tidy’s things she thinks are a mess (usually stuff I’ve left out for a reason!) she’s even been in our room and cleaned out our bedside draws on my side and my husbands!! She has been through our washing and thrown clothes that she thinks are old – for example I have a really tatty tracksuit that I just used for slobbing about the house and she had been over while I was at work and when I got home it was gone! She’s been through my fridge and thrown out food for the family that she said was out of date, but they’d actually been in the freezer and just defrosted so were perfectly fine, then leave a sarcastic note saying how she’d had to throw out ALL the mouldy food so we don’t get food poisoning!!
    I’ve told my husband he needs to have a word and get that key back from her but whenever he’s mentioned it, she bursts into tears saying she’s trying to help and can’t understand why we’re so ungrateful! I know if I was to ‘have a word’ it would be very firm but then my husband would get it in the neck from her. Should I bite my lip and put up with her or try and nip this in the bud now?

    #38482
    Profile photo of Helen
    Helen
    Member

    Oh dear! She sounds like a right one! It’s a really difficult one for both you and your Husband. It’s like the mother/son relationship that’s gone too far. I can see from both points of view, she’s trying to ‘help out’ as she thinks but is going to far, you feel that she is invading your privacy and personal space which I totally agree.

    Why don’t you suggest some jobs for her to do and maybe leave a list, tell her to ask before she throws things away and not to clean your bedroom! She may well feel offended but you have to put your foot down a bit here. Better still why not suggest gardening? It would be a way of getting her out of the house and out of your private space.

    I think ‘in laws forget their place sometimes, I certainly wouldn’t feel comfortable with what she is doing, almost taking over your life!

    Just another thought, if she has all this time on her hands why not suggest she does some voluntary or charity work? This would give you a break maybe. Good luck with this one.

    #38500
    Profile photo of Tori
    Tori
    Member

    Oh god I would HATE that! I can’t believe she went through your bedside drawers, my MIL would have a heart attack if she went through mine. I agree with the other advice, suggest some jobs for her to do. If she’s a little over emotional try playing up how grateful you are ‘hi MIL, thank you so much for clearing up XYZ, we really appreciate you giving your time to help out. THere’s absolutely no need to go in our bedroom though, please don’t feel the need to move anything in there and if you could leave the food in the fridge, it’s usually been in the freezer so the use by dates are irrelevant. If you want to be really helpful then maybe do the kids laundry or some ironing instead?’
    Failing that, make up an excuse to get the key back – you need to get a copy cut or something and then ‘forget’ to give it back?

    #38504
    Profile photo of emfish
    emfish
    Member

    I think it needs to be nipped in the bud NOW! She sounds like she doesn’t take the hint and clearly has no bounds on want is socially acceptable – really, tidying through your bedside drawers? What if she found sex toys or saucy undies?! You have the right to be comfortable in your own home, not worrying what the MIL is up to! I’d have to be straight and say, please don’t go in our bedroom again, it’s really not appropriate and please do not throw away any of our clothes or food in future, we’re adults and perfectly capable of deciding when something is fit for the bin. If we could have our key back then I’ll make sure you can a copy if we go on holiday. If she cries, she cries. It’s either her upset because she’s over-sensitive or you that’s upset because your mother in law has decided to throw away your rampant rabbit!!

    #38505
    Profile photo of MrsRobbo
    MrsRobbo
    Member

    Oh dear she sounds like someone I knows mother in law! She used to just let herself in with a key even if my friend was home, no knock at the door or anything! She would take over with the kids and was especially bad when they had their first child. She wanted to be at the birth, wanted to move in for 2 weeks after baby was born, bought everything without asking and totally took over. She even had a go at her when her husband lost weight and accused her of not feeding her boy properly and if he had a ‘proper’ wife, he wouldn’t look so skinny!!! My friend and her hubby both work full time and he was so overweight and wanted to lose a few stone, the MIL loved chubby kids apparently, setting her husband up to be fat as an adult. In the end she had to be blunt with her before it got out of hand.

    She was so pissed off when she was pregnant with their second child and the MIL was pulling faces at all the names they’d shortlisted for new baby, saying stuff like ‘oh god, that’s a horrid name, if you call him that I will just call him something else!’ – she snapped and said ‘listen, when you have another baby you can call it whatever the hell you want, this is OUR baby that WE will name and if you don’t like it, you’re welcome not to ever see him!” I think the shock of being stood up to and told she might not see her grandchild made her shut up. Admittedly, there were tears and she stormed out and didn’t speak for a few weeks, but ever since it’s been loads better and she seems to respect her a little more.
    I agree, do you want to be upset all the time or face the music and just tell her what she’s doing isn’t really acceptable?

    #38513
    Profile photo of Jones
    Jones
    Member

    Ahhh, I feel sorry for you, it’s not nice when people interfere and believe they are helping out. It’s nice to get help especially if you have children and work, but this is taking things a little to far! You have to remember this is your and your families home not you MIL, be grateful for the help but PUT YOUR FOOT DOWN before it gets out of hand!

    #38685

    Have you been writing about my mother in law? Sounds just like her.She’s got a key, lets herself in even if we’re home, helps herself to anything without asking, told me everything I was doing with the kids when they were younger was ‘wrong’, she had a right strop when I told her she wasn’t comin on holiday with us (my wife and kids hadn’t been away for 8 years and she invited herself along as she’d not been abroad for ages!) and is generally a pain in the ass. My advice, nip it in the bud now before you either end up having a huge row or end up hating her guts and building even more resentment.

    #38826

    Oh heck! You all sound like you have MIL from hell, I must say mine has been a godsend to me. Since me and my wife split (after she went off with someone else), her mother has been really kind to me and my Daughter. She helps me out a lot with childcare and shopping etc. because I have always worked it’s been hard to adjust to be a full time mum and dad. Without my family and my MIL I don’t think I would of coped. I guess I’m lucky in that respect.

    #39792
    Profile photo of hazel
    hazel
    Member

    Feel so sorry for you.

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