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How best to handle new in law situation


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Wish4me, I now remember your threads. What your mother-in-law is doing is very invasive but the REAL issue here is your husband who has chosen not to put his foot down. He needs to be the one to tell them to give you two some privacy...not only because you are newlyweds, but also because it is just a normal thing to do. You don't invite yourself all the time and invade other people's private space..but your husband is the one who needs to lay down the law with them and understand your point of view. There needs to be a happy medium between satisfying his desire to be close to his family while respecting the fact that you are more introverted and need your alone time/couple time. I don't think you did anything wrong by not going...you had a priority to make sure your children were taken care of...she was only giving birth, she was not in a life-threatening intensive care situation. You need to make sure your children's needs count as well. I am actually somewhat shocked at how little support you are getting on here especially since you had to make sure you took care of your children.

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I'm not sure where your getting the 'lack of support' CAD. I personally said more than once that she handled the delivery issue very well.


I just don't see how it's helpful to all nod and say "Your MIL is an interfering Cow" It's not going to change anything, and won't help the OP


If she tries to build a positive relationship with her MIL, shows her some respect for her values, she might see some reciprocation..Arguing about who is 'right' serves no one.


If the MIL were here complaining that her DIL wasn't interested in family traditions and was 'freezing' the family out, I'd be telling her to respect the DIL, and try to build a relationship...


The MIL isn't here asking for advice. The OP is. She won't get the MIL to respect her boundaries until she shows the MIL that she is also respected and that the OP will also make an effort to consider the MIL and family traditions where possible.


Again - with the hospital, the OP did the right thing. She did what she felt she needed to do and felt was appropriate, but let her husband decide for himself what was appropriate for him. Telling them their 'traditions' are wrong, (even though I personally agree - I'd have FLIPPED OUT if my entire family showed up at the hospital when I was giving birth) won't do ANYTHING but fuel resentment and push the MIL to lock down harder to try to force 'her way'

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Sounds to me like the OP has indeed bent over backwards to follow many of the family traditions...I am not sure how people are saying, based simply on the fact that she chose to not go to the big birthing party, that she is not cooperating. That is just ONE thing she chose not to go to and there is an assumption, based on this ONE event, that the OP is not cooperating and is shutting out her mother-in-law, when the OP has clearly stated that she has indeed been doing many of the family stuff. I think the mother-in-law is out of line here and it sounds like the Mother-in-law might be a little passive aggressive when someone does not conform to her idea of what family is about.

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Your correct CAD. I try not to invade other peoples privacy. I'm not pushy but I am also concerned for the well being of my children. I would have crawled up the walls if I had that many people at my bedside straight after a long labor.


I know families have different traditions. Now, I must admit my husband has also told me that his Mom likes to portray that she's the best host having people over but deep down she really gets aggravated. She tries to be the person she's not. She loves to bake and satisfy everyone's needs and then gets very upset if someone refuses to take home left overs. She's constantly going on about how we need to invite his sister over to our house, even tho we have told his sister to stop by anytime. His Mom's opinion is "they are a couple that prefer to be invited". Well, I feel like we should be the one's to decide when and what time to have them over to eat supper. We have already told his sister but his Mom thinks that we need to go about it differently...Don't you agree?

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With regards to the supper I see both your points. On the one hand it should be up to you and your husband to decide...however, I will say that leaving something open ended "stop by anytime" is not really a proper invitation. You should extend a real invitation to come over, if not for dinner, but for lunch for dessert whatever. So I can see your MIL's point on this, however, it is sufficient to say it once and then leave it up to you. She is way too overbearing and meddling.

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The point is, this is who she is. It's easy to see how you probably both (you and her) feel really irritated. But to keep repeating 'this isn't what I would have wanted' isn't useful here... it wasn't about you and presumably either the woman didn't mind OR she has taken a different approach from you in dealing with the family (in fact she's the blood relative I think?)


One thing - you don't need to worry about this overly because you aren't ever going to BE in the position of having just given birth in this family - a good thing! If your husband has no other children then his mum is probably sad about this. However overbearing she is, it's probably mostly done out of love. My Mum was very similar and I did find her very difficult indeed - we clashed loads - but in the end I came to see that she was as she was because she had been treated so badly as a little girl that she had HAD to invent or elaborate these dramatic situations where she was at the centre just to convince herself of the love she'd never got as a child.


Didn't make it any less irritating but it made me feel less threatened by it; able to see it as HER issue rather than OURS or MINE.


See her as a little girl trying to boss her friends round in the playground. Now - you don't want to play the same game, but it's ok to go to the Library and read a book. They will all be along later...


I feel sorry for your husband AND for you. He should set some boundaries, no doubt about it - but it will be hard for him to do that without causing hurt. You could help him by being really positive so that he doesn't feel that your 'demands' are the thin end of a wedge which will end up with him never seeing his family.


The thing here is - and I'm saying this again - you are all perfectly be entitled to be exactly who you are. This could even be a case of someone else's behaviour irritating you because it mirrors something about YOU that you'd prefer wasn't there.


Haven't you dramatised all this a teentsy bit? Has anyone told you you are a disgrace to the family, or thrown you out of the house over this? No. Has anybody told you that you are a dreadful woman for not inviting people over? No. Are you irritated as hell because your husband allowed family contact on honeymoon? Yes (and very understandably so!)


Be adult here and don't blow this out of proportion. However inconceivable you find it, everyone else found it acceptable that all those people should want to be there.


Have you dared to consider you might even be jealous pf their closeness at some level, and feel threatened by it?


Playing Devil's Advocate a little here to get you unstuck from this repeating pattern of 'knowing I'd hate it if it were me'.


It wasn't you.

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If you were in your 20s, I'd say this is like telling your in-laws for the first time that you are going to celebrate Christmas morning at YOUR house, instead of driving to THEIR house this time. It's hard, but sometime you have to do it, so you can start your own traditions.

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