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DIL Perspective


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On 6/1/2022 at 2:00 PM, Lambert said:

I would try to have tougher skin. Or when she says subverting snarky call her out but in a kill you with kindness way... for example she says,  

lol... Sally, you can't deny a mother a chat with her children. 

 

Well, Sally we didn't invite any girlfriends back then.  but I'm glad you're with us now. 

My point is- address her comments in the moment in front of everyone in a light hearted way.  Just like a you do with a child. You calmly explain things in a nice way. This may make her re-think her passive aggressive bullcrap.

Do you think you might be the one being dramatic here? These are your feelings. You're giving your power away with them.  No one replaces one's own mother. 

The best thing you can do is find another outlet for these feelings and keep the peace.  She sounds annoying but harmless. keep it that way. 

My son said that I am alienating him and my DIL by continuing to do passive aggressive things to exclude her such as not including her in what is labeled as a family group chat and that when he married her she became my DIL which means she is also a member of my family.  He also wants to know what can't be discussed over the phone in front of his wife since she is family as well and he isn't going to keep secrets from his wife.

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17 minutes ago, onthego988 said:

My son said that I am alienating him and my DIL by continuing to do passive aggressive things

Take your advice from your son. You raised a good man who became a good husband, so listen to him or lose him.

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1 minute ago, Wiseman2 said:

Take you advice from your son. You raised a good man who became a good husband, so listen to him or lose him.

But being married doesn't mean that I should lose my independent relationship with my son.  While of course I care about my DIL she is my DIL and not my actual child who I birthed, raised, and saw group up.  That doesn't mean I don't like her just that she isn't my child.  I don't think it's that crazy to view your child in law as different then the child you raised.  It's just two different relationships.  My DIL has a wonderful mother and I would never in a million years expect her to treat me equal to her own mother because that would be expecting too much.  Her mother birthed and raised her and watched her grow from the time she was a tiny infant I didn't do all that for her.  It doesn't mean it's a negative thing just a different relationship.  

My son being married doesn't take away the fact that I may want to share some things in a group chat or share some memories that only the members of my family ( my children and I) who grew up together and were present for would want to share. It's not like I have my siblings and their children and the whole extended family on there it's literally just my immediate family.

My DIL is included in everything else as I would never dream of excluding her for family dinners or game nights but as a mother I am allowed to still want some one on one time with my children.  Whether that's via text or phone call.

The vacation thing my son said he was upset about because even though he wasn't married at the time of the vacation he was living with his now wife and they have been together for a long time and were serious and he felt she should have been included since they  were clearly serious since they were living together and has been his serious SO of many years and that I was treating them like some high school non serious couple instead of in an adult relationship where they were committed to each other.  I do realize regarding the vacation thing I did mess up and I apologized to my son and my DIL about that.  

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49 minutes ago, onthego988 said:

But being married doesn't mean that I should lose my independent relationship with my son.  While of course I care about my DIL she is my DIL and not my actual child who I birthed, raised, and saw group up.  That doesn't mean I don't like her just that she isn't my child.  I don't think it's that crazy to view your child in law as different then the child you raised.  It's just two different relationships.  My DIL has a wonderful mother and I would never in a million years expect her to treat me equal to her own mother because that would be expecting too much.  Her mother birthed and raised her and watched her grow from the time she was a tiny infant I didn't do all that for her.  It doesn't mean it's a negative thing just a different relationship.  

My son being married doesn't take away the fact that I may want to share some things in a group chat or share some memories that only the members of my family ( my children and I) who grew up together and were present for would want to share. It's not like I have my siblings and their children and the whole extended family on there it's literally just my immediate family.

My DIL is included in everything else as I would never dream of excluding her for family dinners or game nights but as a mother I am allowed to still want some one on one time with my children.  Whether that's via text or phone call.

The vacation thing my son said he was upset about because even though he wasn't married at the time of the vacation he was living with his now wife and they have been together for a long time and were serious and he felt she should have been included since they  were clearly serious since they were living together and has been his serious SO of many years and that I was treating them like some high school non serious couple instead of in an adult relationship where they were committed to each other.  I do realize regarding the vacation thing I did mess up and I apologized to my son and my DIL about that.  

With this divisive attitude don't be surprised if "their immediate family" doesn't include you. 

 

 

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Everyone is entitled to private one on one convos with a close friend and/or family member without the spouse present.  That's fine.  The issue I have here is the group chat -that's not a private one on one conversation.  At all.  I am very sensitive to the dynamics that change from a one on one conversation to when there is someone else there with whom one person is not as close with -but group text chats should include your DIL. If you want to maintain a good relationship with your son and his family.

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1 hour ago, onthego988 said:

I have spoken to my son and he says I may be your son but she is now also your DIL therefore also a member of this family so why can my unmarried SO who is not my dad be a part of the group chats but not your DIL who is actually your family?  

This is a very good question.  And what was your answer?

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5 hours ago, onthego988 said:

  What are your thoughts on a good explanation that is polite and doesn't cause drama or friction between me, my son, and my DIL.

There isn't one.  You are mean spirited for whatever reason and want to keep this girl from your convos for no valid reason that I can see.

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4 minutes ago, melancholy123 said:

There isn't one.  You are mean spirited for whatever reason and want to keep this girl from your convos for no valid reason that I can see.

Ohhhh... so sad.  Hope in the future things can be better. ❤️

 

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8 hours ago, onthego988 said:

I have spoken to my son and he says I may be your son but she is now also your DIL therefore also a member of this family so why can my unmarried SO who is not my dad be a part of the group chats but not your DIL who is actually your family?  My son also doesn't understand if he is married and his wife is also now my family why the phone calls have to be private he said what would I have to talk about that he has to keep secret from his wife.  Since she is the DIL she should be included as well.  What are your thoughts on a good explanation that is polite and doesn't cause drama or friction between me, my son, and my DIL.

I don't see the harm to include your DIL in the group chat since you're discussing vacations, funny FB memes and family pics.  Perhaps she feels left out or snubbed and wants to belong in the camaraderie.

As for phone calls, I agree, a private conversation with your son is not too much to ask.  I have private conversations with my sons.  I would never want my phone conversations with anyone to be announced on speaker.  If I wanted that, I'd have an in person conversation with a group instead of a 1:1 private conversation. 

I'd ask your son for a private 1:1 phone conversation once in a while and remind him that it will be infrequent, brief and you are mindful of exercising discretion.  Hopefully, this type of reassurance will cause him to cooperate with you.  If not, you'll just have to learn to yield a lot as opposed to escalating discord. 

You agree that the wife comes first and foremost. 

You remember the years and days when you were the apple of your son's eyes once upon a time.  When sons are 3 or 4 years old and early elementary school age, they absolutely adore their mothers.  As they grow up, they gravitate towards their fathers but mother holds near and dear to their hearts. 

Unfortunately, once the wife enters the picture, you have to step back a lot because now she runs the show.  I'm sorry for your reduced position and status in your son's life.  It happens and it's universal.

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5 hours ago, Cherylyn said:

'd ask your son for a private 1:1 phone conversation once in a while and remind him that it will be infrequent, brief and you are mindful of exercising discretion. 

I would do this to do damage control for now and the foreseeable future.  I think it's fine for a parent and child to have private conversations (I mean not daily especially if the spouse/kids are around) but in a normal regular way. I have private convos with my mom most days of the week.  I typically call her and I call when I'm not needed with the family.  If she calls we're totally cool if I can't talk then. 

My husband used to talk to his parents (they would call together) every few days and he tried to limit it to during his commute home so he could focus on us when he walked in.  One reason we each spoke to our parents that often is because our parents age range was late 70s-80 when we married and 3 of the 4 were disabled.  So it was also to check in.

  I had no issue with any private convos except if it went on too long and interfered with him helping me with the baby etc.  He didn't multitask like I did so if baby needed changing and it was "his turn" he wouldn't do it while chatting with his parents. It was a timing issue/logistics not that it was "private" -they always asked how I was doing and had I wanted to talk to it would have been completely welcome. 

(my son is 13 and he's been close with both of us his whole life -possibly a little more attached to me when I was home with him the first 7 years and my husband had to travel/work a great deal).

I called his parents on my own to share stories about their grandson and say hi!  OP - do damage control now by limiting the private convos and showing your DIL with your actions she is part of the family.  Offer to help her in whatever way makes sense (meaning given schedules and geography) and be as inclusive as possible. Make amends.  

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My husband talks to his mom every Sunday after dinner. 

Excluding your daughter-in-law  and making her feel unwelcome in the family I can guarantee will come back to bite you . This isn’t about chat groups and phone calls. Men go off and are not glued to mom anymore. They are not like daughters in that regard. Maybe inside you are upset and jealous you aren’t the star of his universe anymore. 

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I have a MIL and I'm a mother of sons.  I know what it feels like to be a DIL because my husband is close to his mother.  He was such an easy baby, never fussed, her firstborn son and she favors my husband out of her three children.  My husband always helped his sickly mother ever since he was a young boy.  He helped take care of his younger siblings, cleaned the house, grocery shopped, ran errands, cooked, did laundry, fixed cars and did yard work.  She depended on him.  You name it, he did it without complaint. 

During our early years of marriage, I remember my MIL asking my husband to run errands for her during his work's lunch hour!  My husband didn't get a chance to eat lunch!  I finally put my foot down and put an end to that!  Granted, it wasn't a popular decision with my MIL but oh well. 🙄  What I say goes (within reason).

I'm very close to my sons.  I know there will come a day when I'm no longer the only lady in my sons' lives.  I will have to step aside, yield and acquiesce endlessly.  It's a given. 

Most of the time and traditionally, mothers and daughters remain close and have a close bond of sisterhood once the daughter becomes a mother.  Daughters ask their mothers for advice, tips, hints, recipes, perhaps daycare help, shopping, do meals together, etc. 

Sons gravitate towards their wives and as your son's mother, you'll be lucky if you receive a postal Mother's Day card, a phone call on your birthday or a visit several times a year.  It's the natural course of life.  Or, many sons reside thousands of miles away from their mothers and it feels painfully distant. 

I'm sorry that you're experiencing this new role and shift in your life as the MIL.  I hope you can divert yourself towards healthy distractions so that your DIL and son aren't your whole life anymore. 

Even though I'm on peaceful terms with my MIL, she's NOT my mother.  I'm civil towards her but there's always been a cool distance between us which is quite universal.  It's not a shocking revelation.  It's very normal and commonplace.  Grow accustomed to it. 

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*****Most of the time and traditionally, mothers and daughters remain close and have a close bond of sisterhood once the daughter becomes a mother.  Daughters ask their mothers for advice, tips, hints, recipes, perhaps daycare help, shopping, do meals together, etc. *****

Hahaha  I gotta laugh at that, and I don't mean to be rude but holy cow my life was just the opposite of this.  From the time I was a little kid I was not close to my mother, never did any of those things you mentioned above.  It would have been nice, but no sisterhood for me.

I am a MIL and I worked hard to be the opposite of my mother and sort of like the idea above and I do have a good relationship with my own daughter and SIL.

 

 

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Just to underscore what others have said -this is a delicate situation because you've refused, OP, to respect proper boundaries in a number of ways and adjust to the shifting role here.

I loved my MIL and miss her. My husband is an only child and bore the brunt of caring for his parents when they were elderly and disabled.  Brunt -he did this with love - I am just stating the reality.  I wasn't always a fan of how close they were.  It annoyed me at times.  But I loved my inlaws especially my MIL. 

One day we were sitting on her porch and she was telling a story about a road trip they took with my husband when he was in his 20s (right after grad school, like mid 20s).  She said "he got a bad headache so I gave him [pain reliever]".  Then she looked at me (I hadn't said a word but yes was cringing a bit at "gave him", paused and said with total humility - I mean - he was [mid 20s] - I didn't "give him" medicine - I had it with me -he took it.  Lightbulb moment.  

Have some lightbulb moments.  Good luck.

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9 hours ago, melancholy123 said:

*****Most of the time and traditionally, mothers and daughters remain close and have a close bond of sisterhood once the daughter becomes a mother.  Daughters ask their mothers for advice, tips, hints, recipes, perhaps daycare help, shopping, do meals together, etc. *****

Hahaha  I gotta laugh at that, and I don't mean to be rude but holy cow my life was just the opposite of this.  From the time I was a little kid I was not close to my mother, never did any of those things you mentioned above.  It would have been nice, but no sisterhood for me.

I am a MIL and I worked hard to be the opposite of my mother and sort of like the idea above and I do have a good relationship with my own daughter and SIL.

 

 

I'm sorry you didn't have a close relationship with your mother the way I could call my mother for wise counsel and advice anytime.  Granted, I don't agree with her on all levels but during times of distress, she has always been there for me.  She has always imparted and instilled her pearls of wisdom to me ever since I was a young girl.  I've since learned a lot of invaluable lessons from her. 

In her own way, my mother helped me a lot whenever I needed her the most.  She worked full time yet somehow found the time and energy to bring delicious home cooked dinners to my doorstep for the first several years of both of my sons' lives!  I don't know how many mothers would do that for their daughters as new mothers!  Later, we would cook together in my kitchen.  She cooked feasts for my husband, sons and me.  My mother bought me beautiful, very chic, timeless classic clothes which I still wear to this day. 

As for my MIL and SIL (sister-in-law), we're at peace but I wouldn't go so far as to say we're old chums.  I have a pleasant rapport with them whenever we socialize with our local in-laws.  However, I've always maintained a polite, very well mannered, deliberate distance.  It works. 

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