REAL LIFE ISSUES | “When MIL = Manipulator-in-Law” By Miss S… The First Bloggista of Our In-Law Series!

Alison here.  Pretttttyyy pretty stoked about introducing this new series you’re about to experience, and to see it all coming together is nothing short of a dream come true.  I hear EVERY DAY from brides with in-law questions and issues, and this series was an inevitability.  

Now, I think we all know that there are lovely, kind, wonderful in-laws out there, as well as go-with-the-flow in-laws, and not-very-involved in-laws…. clearly, since in-laws are people, naturally they come in all shapes, sizes, and personalities.  And many make a bride’s transition from girlfriend to wife easy breezy beautiful – even delightful in many cases! – and for these types of in-laws we are beyond grateful.  They disprove the reigning stigma.  Trust me, great in-laws do exist!  

Unfortunately, they don’t exist in all cases.  Even more, they are hardly the exception to the rule.  

Now, without further adieu, I introduce you to Miss S, and her story…

Who am I?

I’m a hard working, chocolate-loving gal who met the love of her life in grad school. I never was the type of girl who daydreamed about her wedding – BUT I saw enough TV shows and heard enough stories to fear having a mean, evil mother-in-law. I promised myself at an early age that I would never, ever let myself marry a guy who had an evil mom…

Fast forward 15 years and here I am with, who I believe to be, the most manipulative mother-in-law on earth.  So much for sticking to my promises.

The problem is I didn’t realize how evil she was until after I got engaged.  I was happily engaged for exactly 7 days before my world crashed around me in ways I had never thought possible.

My mission is to share my story with the hope of helping my fellow ladies out there who are experiencing similar problems. It can be a depressing and heartbreaking time, but remember you are not alone and you can get through this. If I did, so can you!

And a little more about me - Things I love: chocolate, cabernet sauvignon, salsa dancing, eating good food with good company, traveling with my fiancé, the color whiteThings I hate: Obviously, Mean In-Laws

When MIL = Manipulator-in-Law

I used to describe my future mother-in-law as “controlling” and “overbearing.”  Then my fiancé and I met with a therapist who made me realize that she was more than that – she was a manipulator.  And thus, what I call a Manipulator-in-Law (“MIL”).

The art of manipulation is mysterious to those more simple-minded folks like me who would never even dream about purposely hurting others for selfish goals.  However, dealing with my MIL has helped me see what manipulation looks like in real life and how to wrangle yourself out of it, no matter how painful that process might be. A MIL not only makes you feel personally miserable, but can also ruin the relationship you have with your significant other. Trust me when I say it is important for the survival of your relationship and marriage to deal with the MIL before it is too late.

So you may ask, what does a Manipulator-in-law look like?

A MIL can take many different forms. Mine used the following two methods to manipulate my fiancé (1) money and (2) threats to hate me if my fiancé didn’t do as my MIL insisted. The most telling example of her manipulation is the story of my engagement ring. My fiancé used the money he had saved up throughout the years and sold some of his stock investments to buy me a beautiful engagement ring.  He spent months and months looking for the perfect rock for me.  Because his bank statements were being sent to my MIL’s home, my MIL found out how much he had spent on my rock… and was absolutely furious at how much he had spent. It is true that he spent way more than the typical rule of spending two or three-months of your annual salary because he based it on his future salary, not his current. Regardless, the point is that my fiancé spent his own money, not his parents so it shouldn’t matter.  However, my MIL insisted that the money in my fiancé’s bank account and stock investments were NOT his money for reasons that require an entirely separate blog post on how they used finances to control him.  My MIL told my fiancé that she would hate me more and more every time she saw me with that ring. Quite strange that she would hate ME, even though it was my fiancé who picked out the ring, but my MIL knew that my fiancé wanted her to like me so this was her way to manipulate him. She also threatened to not approve the engagement if my fiancé proposed with that ring.

My MIL told my fiancé that the only way she would approve the engagement would be under the following conditions: (1) my fiancé buys a SECOND less expensive ring at a price that my MIL sets, (2) my fiancé proposes to me with this second less expensive ring and (3) my fiancé hands over the FIRST nicer ring to my MIL.  My MIL said she would put the first nicer ring in a safe deposit box until she decided that my fiancé was making enough money to afford that ring, and at such time she would return the ring to my fiancé.  Crazy huh? Her plan especially makes no sense considering that the main reason she got mad in the first place was because my fiancé had spent a lot of money on the first ring! If she didn’t like how much money he spent, why in the world would she make my fiancé spend even MORE money to buy a second ring?  It doesn’t make any sense. My analysis is that it was more than about the money – she wanted to be in control of the entire proposal, and she could not stand the thought of my fiancé giving me such a nice ring and giving so much love to another woman. I joke that my fiancé is probably the only guy who had to buy two engagement rings to propose to one girl.

As crazy at this all sounds, my fiancé, a victim of her manipulation throughout the years, yielded to her demands in an effort to make sure she approved our engagement and continued to like me.  But he went along with the plan with an important twist – my fiancé gave me the first ring and gave my MIL the second one.  He was able to pull this off by buying a second ring that was on the large side but of lesser quality (and thus able to fit into the budget my MIL had set).  I’m surprised my MIL hasn’t gotten the ring she received appraised yet.  I can’t wait to see her flip out when she finds out that her little plan didn’t work.

And here’s the worst part – after my fiancé proposed, we called our respective parents to share the happy news.  My MIL asks me on the phone, and I quote, “Do you like the ring? My son spent so much time looking for it.” It makes me sick to my stomach that she would ask that question to my face after trying to manipulate the whole situation behind my back.

Looking back, it really amazes me that both my fiancé and I did not realize how manipulative my MIL was until I talked to my therapist.  We never thought about using that word “manipulator” to even describe her; we always just described her as overbearing.  I guess we were naïve about the whole situation.

So ladies, ask yourself, is your MIL simply overbearing or, in fact, manipulating you and your significant other? Remember, the first step to winning this battle is to recognize that you are in fact being manipulated.  And there’s no shame in admitting that you have been the victim of manipulation.  It’s not your fault that your MIL is so crazy.

So I’d love to hear from you all.  Have you had less than positive experiences with your in-laws?  … what has been your experience?

Thanks everyone, it’s so nice to share my story with all of you!

xoxo  - Miss S

Label(s): Popular *New*, Real Life Issues, The Bloggistas

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205 comments

  1. H on January 16, 2014

    I am sick and tired of my MIL , my partner and I are not married , but we decided to plan to have a baby together…we were super happy together until the news of the baby…

    She used to live 600km away, now she lives 30km from us. and is making my life a living hell. She takes every single possible opportunity to see her grandchild, so much, I sometimes feel I don’t spend enough time with him. When I talk to her about it, she calls me selfish. And states that I see her son and grandchild every day, why can she not see them when she prefers…

    she interferes in EVERYTHING WE do…recently she went a little too far…and now flipped at her…now I realize the father of my son is truly a mommies boy…he does EVERYTHING she wants and she is so use to him saying yes and amen to her, he does not know how to say no….and even, when MIL and I have a fight, he takes her side EVERYTIME…

    I am a the point where I am seriously considering leaving him….moving out and I know I will be just peachy… rather alone with my children, than with him and his mommy …

    she also goes SO FAR to include her manipulative behaviour and get his brothers to join in , in getting more time with my partner and son…

    it is now to the point where I realize, he has to choose, us or them…and the worst is…it seems like he is choosing them ….and is argument is ” I only want one BIG happy family” which means he want EVERYONE to join together and just be happy… but life does not work that way…and to be honest, he sounds EXACLTY like the MIL…

    SO tired of this…I now want peace and happiness and MIL will always be tolerated by me, NOT provide me happiness, she is just TO much of a Mil…and her best strategy for manipulation is to ” KILL me with kindness”, but I see RIGHT through her strategy…. like packing a little sleepover bag, while agreeing she wont be sleeping over, and MAY ONLY visit for the day ,but when she comes over, she places the sleepover bag very strategically in front for all toe see. Just ” In case”..

    She turns VERYTHING she does, into n honest meaning full friendly, no harm done, meant it well act…meanwhile she is VERY WELL aware of what irritates me the most and she will CONTINUE doing that until I feel like screaming !

    I honestly, cannot handle my partners MIL baggage any longer, I want leave him, so he can go move in with her….she can be a wife for him, and by looking at his behaviour, the 2 of them are emotionally married…

    her opinion means more than mine, her way of doing this are ALWAY better, so I told him to go sleep with her…. :) and after the sent him and e-mail containing information of a treatment centre, of which I don’t need help for…just cause she felt like helping and feels I might have a problem, …I lost it…not even informing my family what she is planning, she just took it on herself to NOTIFY him that SHE believes I have a problem…

    how devious is THAT ? how LOW CAN you go ??? how much more manipulative CAN you be ?

    I got rid of her, told her if she ever contacted me, my mother or my daughter I will get outside help to deal with her…cause I think she requires mental help, further, if she wants to see her grandchild, she can speak to my partner, I want no contact with her….:) feels better now!

    Reply
    • Kayla on March 9, 2014

      Hello, I can’t help but read your story and relate. I have a daughter with my boyfriend and we have another one on the way… Recently his grandmother bashed me on a birthday post I made for my cousin. Accusing me of being a racist and then his while fily jumped in. The funny this was out of respect for his didn’t say a thing, but the conversation seemed to continue regardless and awful this were said about me. My boyfriend seemed to feel really bad and said he was ashamed of his family for doing that, but I went through his messages to his family and he basically kissed his mothers ass and said I was in the wrong. I feel totally betrayed by him and feel that he is a coward… I to feel that she choices them over me all the time and they are also overbearing when it comes to my child… I feel like the females in his family try to take my place as mother… I guess my question to you is was it worth staying with him or is it better to leave ?

      Reply
  2. Mark on January 28, 2014

    Hope it’s okay if I as a guy weigh in. I think my MIL can pretty much top anyone’s. She’s a “retired” (was actually fired but that’s another story) college professor, was still working when we got married. Fancies herself a liberal, free spirit, so decided from the beginning that I am too “uptight”. Took an immediate dislike to my parents, tried to make my wife think I had cold feet four days before the wedding because my wife couldn’t get a hold of me (I was in the emergency room and couldn’t use my cell phone), and was going around badmouthing my parents to the staff at the reception venue on the day of the wedding. Then wrote my mother a really mean and nasty note for no reason out of the blue the day after the wedding. And that was all during our courtship and wedding. In the ten years since, she has been horrible to us, but especially my wife, who has been a saint to put up with her as long as she has. She cuts my wife down all the time, about her career, makes false accusations about my wife’s character. She makes disparaging comments when my wife gains any weight at all, made comments like we bought too much house (we have a 1 story 2200 square foot house built in 1965), was furious that we didn’t buy ourselves a golden retriever, her favorite breed, and called the dachshund we bought “a worm”. She bought my wife’s son a Wii even though we had said we didn’t want a video game system in the house, she bought my wife’s then 9 year old son a dirt bike rated for 14 year olds and up when he was up visiting her, and then lied to us and said it was an electric scooter. She has told my wife’s then-13 year old son stories about catching my wife having sex with her boyfriend when she was 16, She told my wife’s then 13 year old son that she wanted to smoke marijuana with him, and when we nicely asked her not to do that, she flew into a rage and nearly hit me. Even though my wife and I totally stayed calm and said we just needed to set that boundary, a year later she accused us of “battering” her. Then SHE cut off contact with US. I think it was a melodramatic move to get my wife to come crawling back to her, but we decided that we were much happier without her in our lives, so we just let it go. Of course, after a year, she emailed me, and at first it seemed like she might sincerely want reconciliation, but it quickly became clear she just wanted more shots at my wife, wanted to talk about all the supposed wrongs my wife had done her (all completely made up in her insane mind) and wanted us to pay for her and my wife to go to therapy together so she could unload all of these lies with a therapist to “protect” her from my wife, who “intimidates” her.

    Reply
  3. Jenna on January 29, 2014

    I’m pretty sure my mother AND father-in-law to be will put everyone’s story to shame….they’re absolutely crazy and I seriously think they need medical help. Close to one year ago my fiance proposed to me with an elaborate proposal, everything between us was great, things with his family were ok. We started planning the engagement party (keep in mind his family made it very clear that they wouldn’t be contributing a dime to anything, since my fiance supports them). The night of our engagement party my fiance picks me up and on the drive says to me, we have a problem…..my father would like you to put my sister as your MAID OF HONOR!!!!!!! To which I turned around and said, absolutely not, we have spoken about this from day one, it will be whoever I want it to be. His family pouted and looked sour the entire time during our engagement party, ruining my night and my fiance’s night. Granted my fiance told his father to but out and it’s none of his business who i choose to put. However, his father and mother then proceeded to threaten us to not come to the wedding. Things got so extremely bad that my fiance would come over every night in tears because his parents would not let this go. So i decided to take things into my own hands since this mama’s boy couldnt shut them down. I went over to their house and addressed his parents saying this is our wedding, our happines, and our life. Who i choose to have stand next to me on one of the most important days of my life is my decision and my decision only. His parents then turned to me and told me that if i dont do what they want, they will never allow this wedding to happen……his parents proceeded to also say that I’m the shit of the earth and told me to get the f#$% out of their house and never to dare to come back in. For months its been a complete nack and forth with his psychotic parents and my fiance. His mother has such a sick influence over him that he can’t tell her to back off…..he’s afraid of disappointing mommy.

    So my issue is, am I the crazy one for still sticking with him?????? our wedding is just a few months away and she’s managed to start another fight over something so stupid – thanks you cards. I mailed all the thank you cards for the engagement and she looked at my fiance and said, “am i not worthy of hand delivery, she’s marrying my son?” she cried and guilted him and of course my fiance fell right into her trap! Telling me that i disrespected him and his family.

    WTH do i do? Please help!

    Reply
    • Lisa on January 29, 2014

      I feel for you, I do. However, if this is what is going on before the wedding, on your day, it will only get worse afterwards, especially when children are added to the mix, if you intend to have. Your in-laws will feel they have some claim and right to their wants and opinions worse than before.

      It’s a cycle that will not end and really, the only one that can end it is your future husband. He can complain all he wants about them but unless HE is the one putting his foot down and HE is the one asserting and sticking to boundaries, your opinions to them mean nothing because to them, you don’t matter. BUT their son does.

      When things became so bad with my psychotic and verbally abusive mother in law, I told my husband straight up, “we are family and it’s up to you to tell your mother, if she bans me, she bans us all”. If not, she has an extra bedroom he can stay in until he figures that out. So, he reaffirmed the boundaries much to her hate and temper tantrums.

      When two people get married, they become each other’s priorities and his parents do not come before you. If he is not realizing that now, then I’m sorry but from what I read, the outlook does not look good unless he stands up and grows a spine and tells his parents the real score, no if, ands or buts.

      Reply
    • Annie on January 29, 2014

      Jenna…after 10 years, I still have issues with my MIL because I stood up to her. My husband still doesn’t. Everyone else is scared of her, so she controls them. Men don’t like to rock the boat, and your man is in an unhealthy pattern with his mom. It will get worse after marriage and kids. Moving far away helps, but it is not a cure. Read TOXIC IN-LAWS. Great book. Go to counseling with your man before the wedding so a counselor can explain his roles to you and his mom. Maybe it will help. Best wishes

      Reply
    • Renee on February 7, 2014

      Dear Jenna, I went through something similar. As a matter of fact my MIL told my now husband that he had to ask her permission to get married. I was told what I am allowed to do at my wedding even what flowers I might have. Luckily for me my husband stood by me and not his mom. She went so far that we (my husband and I) don’t talk to her anymore and that was his choice. I cannot tell you what to do but can you live like this for the rest of your life. Your man needs to own up and stand behind you. Just remember a wedding ring might even worsen their behaviour. Good luck hun

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      • Alyssa on February 25, 2014

        The others have stated it really well, Jenna. Things will most likely get worse after the wedding, but it can be bearable IF your fiancé stands behind you.

        We’ve dealt with pretty much non-stop BS since our marriage over 5 years ago. My father-in-law stole our wedding day; we had a 4.5-year mutual time-out for that one, and my husband supported me 100% throughout it. When we finally started working towards involving the family – primarily after our first child was born last year – my aunt-in-law went out of her way to support us. Everything was great until she became suffocatingly enmeshed in our lives just three (yes, three) months later, becoming hysterical every time we couldn’t follow her wishes. We pulled back; she threw tantrums and accused us of being mean, and spread lies to the rest of the family to portray us as the victimizers. (And she thinks this will encourage us to further develop our relationship with her!?) In a nutshell, everyone has always deferred to her wishes so that she doesn’t go crazy, and we’re the first in the family who has set limits with it. Our boundaries are simply unacceptable within the existing family dynamic.

        Despite all of this, my husband continues to support me and stand up to his family. I’m not saying it’s been easy for either of us – he never realized how boundary-stomping his family is, and I’m a people pleaser who can’t stand knowing that my very existence has caused turmoil. However, there’s no way that we could have survived as a couple without his backing me. Proceed with caution and ensure that you have your fiancé’s support in setting limits with your in-laws. Good luck and best wishes.

        Reply
    • Alyssa on February 25, 2014

      The others have stated it really well, Jenna. Things will most likely get worse after the wedding, but it can be bearable IF your fiancé stands behind you.

      We’ve dealt with pretty much non-stop BS since our marriage over 5 years ago. My father-in-law stole our wedding day; we had a 4.5-year mutual time-out for that one, and my husband supported me 100% throughout it. When we finally started working towards involving the family – primarily after our first child was born last year – my aunt-in-law went out of her way to support us. Everything was great until she became suffocatingly enmeshed in our lives just three (yes, three) months later, becoming hysterical every time we couldn’t follow her wishes and demands. We pulled back; she threw tantrums and accused us of being mean, and spread lies to the rest of the family to portray us as the victimizers. (And she thinks this will encourage us to further develop our relationship with her!?) In a nutshell, everyone has always deferred to her wishes so that she doesn’t go crazy, and we’re the first in the family who has set limits with it. Our boundaries are simply unacceptable within the existing family dynamic.

      Despite all of this, the one thing that’s enabled me to get through it is the 100% support of my husband. I’m not saying it’s been easy for either of us – he never realized how boundary-stomping his family is, and I’m a people pleaser who can’t stand knowing that my very existence has caused turmoil. Proceed with caution and ensure that you have your fiancé’s support in setting limits with your in-laws; if not, you’re in for a lot more heartache. Good luck and best wishes.

      Reply
    • helpless on April 1, 2014

      My partner and I have been together for 8 years. He’s loving and caring when his mom and brother are not around. He puts up a different persona in front of them..he becomes a MCP. His mom is very manipulative and greedy. She always uses her ‘widow’ card and cries crocodile tears in front of him. She’s always asking for money. My partner’s brother is weak and cannot take decisions. My partner’s brother is father of a son and a teenager while his wife is a neighbourhood watch and a never-worked in her life. While we worked hard and my partner always tells me that i do not contribute enough. I give more than half of my salary in the house. My partner tells me that his mother always comes first. Even if she’s wrong, she would be right. And instead of standing by me, when i am right, he joins with his mother for verbal abuse to me to make her happy. My partner is well-educated but I fail to understand how come he’s so cowardly. I am so emotionally close to my partner that I cannot imagine my life without him. But I know he would never stand by my truths while his stupid mom is around. I do know what to do. I have told him that I cannot take wrong things and I would speak up. He doesn’t like my saying that and threatens to leave me.

      Reply
    • Beth on April 15, 2014

      Did you end up getting married? I am going through this exact thing right now and can barely put one foot in front of the other. I’m reading your post and it’s like reading my life story. It sounds like your future in laws are like mine, and one may suffer from borderline personality disorder. My future MIL has this which makes our lives miserable. I am considering calling off the wedding but don’t want to lose him. What did you do? Whatever you did, I hope you are OK.

      Reply
  4. Beverley on February 9, 2014

    My MIL is takes the cake to all of these. This crazy lady has manipulated my husband and his brother forever. She had my husband arrested, charged and jailed for taking a pack of cigarettes at 14 and made him a ward of the court. He spent 6 months in a correctional facility where he was sexually assaulted by one of the attendants there and yes there was charges laid and she was a witness for the attendants side.(Attendant was found guilty) My husband at 15 got out of the facility and travelled across Canada working enough to eat. Being homeless in many cities. He did this for six years phoning her every once in a while asking if he could come home all she would do is send him $100 and tell him to stay where he was.
    I met him in a local truck stop in Saskatchewan where I got him a job and found him a place to live. After a couple of years he went and got his Class 1 licence to drive truck for a living. we eventually moved in together,
    4 years after we were living together his parents and brother show up on our doorstep. Nice as pie brought him his dirt bike from his childhood years. We have been together for 23 years and she has interfered continually throughout our lives. We bought a truck for his work, 2 months later the in laws show up with one of their logging trucks and told him to drive it for them, he did. We starved that season, she would never pay us, the next season she typed up a contract for him that we were buying the truck for $5000 a month. He did this for 4 years, we had 2 payments left and all of a sudden he was moving back to BC to run the truck here. We moved, she was pissed that I came along. They took the truck back over and left us high and dry with no job. A year later I bought the local store, a month later she was on our doorstep crying that they needed a diver, my husband dropped everything and went. We had a big argument over this and he moved out down to their house. 3 months later my husband rolled the truck and was banged up pretty good, he moved home to me that night and was unemployed. We did not speak to her for the next 2 years as the truck accident was apparently my fault. Don’t know why I was not even informed of it until 10 hours after it happened. She spread many rumors around our home town , that I took with a grain of salt.
    In the meantime she started picking on my sister in law who was losing her 17 year old son to cancer, telling her shit that it was cause he wasn’t her husbands son. MIL took their tractor and tried knocking the mobile home off of its foundation with my sister in law and their 2 children in it. My brother in law got some balls and moved his family and home away from their property after 13 years of living there. he also went and got another job and cut the apron strings totally.
    In July of last year we went and bought our own logging truck, we were finally getting ahead of the game. In September, our creek washed out and destroyed our house leaving us homeless, MIL offered to sell us their house so we had a place to live, my husband jumped right on it, I was very skeptical but went along with it. We moved in October 1/2013. I painted the whole house, MIL still hadn’t moved all her stuff out and started showing up at midnight work in the office, than at 6 am for coffee. I had not unpacked much as it was all in the garage. Then she changed her mind , she wanted her house back, I said NO. She went ballistic when my husband agreed with me. She punched him in the face twice, threw my shit all over, took pictures of my stuff still packed. We left the house and called the police as she was going beserk. We went back to house when police arrived and she had us locked out. The cops told her we had the right to be there, then told us we should find another place to sleep for the night to let her cool down.
    We decided we were not going to stay there cause she was nuts. we found another place, bought new furniture, moved the next day with police escort to remove our stuff.
    Now she is trying to find out who our landlord is trying to stir up shit. I beat her at her own game though, I was up front with the landlord and told them everything. MIL is just pissed cause I put a stop payment on all the postdated payment checks for their house. She is fucking LOCO. Thanks for listening to my tale of woe and no we have had no contact with the crazy bitch.

    Reply
  5. SaraSota on February 12, 2014

    I am not sure if I am overreacting or am playing the fool here or just flat out a weak pile of poo (which I have never been before I met these evil people and had children with their son). I believe I have not only a manipulative mother in law, but father in law also (Their son and I are not married, but they’re still in laws I guess). SOOOO what does a woman do, that has two children with a man, when the Pa MIL tells her…”You’re just not what we wanted, and maybe you’re just not the right fit for this family”. And Ma MIL tells me I need “hormone therapy” after my last child (he’s almost 11 months now). BUT while I was pregnant…we lived in their cabin, while we were trying to finish our house, which was 50 ft away and the boyfriend had to be over there every night and I had to listen to their crap and negativity…EVERY night. So no, I didn’t need “hormone therapy” but some kind of therapy!! Like a sharp object in my temple! I can’t even tell you how low and small I feel every time I am around them…They are perfect and Ma MIL is the best cook, the best mother, the hardest worker, the best at everything…and they both remind me of it. ALL THE TIME! The boyfriend and them are in biz together and I am very hesitant to work with them because of all the resentment already. It will only be worse I feel. Plus, we live close to them as we are all on the same property. But if I want “us, our family that we have created” to survive I need to put in some time..it’s our bread and butter. But I am extremely reluctant. I can only fake it so much…until I break. Which I think I am already broken. I am emotionally drained, a huge ball of anxiety and I am supposed to be strong and happy, at least for my children. The first time I even mentioned how crazy his parents make me and requested a little space from them…he accused me of wanting him to “disown them”. I would NEVER ask anyone to do that. WHAT DO I DO? Any advice would be helpful. I may end up going to a therapist just because I don’t want my life to end up in shambles because of two crappy people. I would like to think I am strong enough to overcome this, but it’s sucking the life right out of me. And it’s not only unhealthy for me but for my babies. And THEY are the most important aspect of this whole scenario…but the MILs just want to control them too. Because they did such a wonderful job with their two boys. Ha! ITS SICK! HELP!

    Reply
  6. Zendaya on February 13, 2014

    Hmmmm I feel so glad to have come across this blog and be able to share what I am feeling. My fiancé and I are getting married in two months. From the start, I have told him what kind of wedding I wanted and that I wanted something simple and intimate. However once we started planning the wedding he got on and on about involving his family and about how they are already complaining that I am not involving them. I left the food to his mother as I believed that was a very important part of the wedding. My parents are the easy going type and really don’t mind what we do. They are happy with whatever we decide and also as the groom is paying for the entire wedding they have given him the onus to have it the way he wants. I have been very understanding but what really sent me off the edge is that he called me this morning after he and I had agreed on the wording for the invitations and already sent them out for printing and just handed the phone to his mother who proceeded to say she needs to see the invitations and they need to be hosted by the parents. I specifically told my fiancé that I did not want that kind of invitation. After his mom finished he got back on the phone and said “I told you to involve my mom in the invitation and get her input” I almost screamed. I am sooo annoyed and upset with the whole thing I have just told them to go ahead and do what they want. I know my fiancé is the ultimate mama’s boy but I was willing to put up with it for the sake of love. I know he will never change. Her opinion is the best, he wants to move next door when we are married becaude he doesn’t want to leave his mother and I know that she comes first before me. It really bothers me but the day I tried to talk to him about it he went off and told me point blank that I cannot tell him how to relate with his family and his family comes first before anyone. He is very loving and caring but this is the only thing that scares me. He is a divorcee and from the things he has told me it seemd his ex wife had issues with the mother but he has never gone into detail. I want to be with him but I am very afraid of what the future holds. I am getting cold feet but with two months away from the wedding I CANNOT call it off. Please helpppp.

    Reply
    • Loni on February 13, 2014

      You can always call the wedding off up until you say I do. If you are ok with never being your future husbands priority and never having a say in your marriage then he is the man for you. It’s hard to imagine that sometimes love isn’t enough. Don’t be afraid to say you need more time, that your not ready to make this very serious commitment. Please don’t walk down that aisle with reservations my friend did and was divorced in six months. You want to be able to walk down the aisle knowing the man at the end is your future and he really has your back and you are the most important woman in his life. Good Luck and don’t be afraid to say hold on.

      Reply
    • Lisa on February 16, 2014

      Actually, you can call it off…more importantly it sounds like you should. Once you are married, you become his family…his top priority and if he is already saying you won’t be then it sounds like he should be marrying his mother, not you. Apparently, he is an ex-husband for a reason and divorces don’t come cheap. It’s better to call it off beforehand than go through the wedding as an uncertain bride and end up divorced.

      Reply
    • Kayla on March 9, 2014

      I would call off the wedding for now… It doesn’t sound like it’s going to get better anytime soon… You fiancé should be sticking up for you and by your side… It’s your special day not his mothers… But unfortunately from my experience momma boys are the worsed… Hope all works out for you though

      Reply
    • Liz on March 12, 2014

      I’m so sorry you are dealing with such a difficult situation. I’m sure your fiance can be a very nice and loving man (why else would you be marrying him?). I know it seems impossible, but unless things have changed drastically since you posted, I think you should very seriously consider postponing the wedding. Like a PP said, perhaps your fiance divorced for a reason. If your fiance’s ex had the same kind of issues you’re dealing with and his refusal to put her first was what lead to the divorce, he’s already said and shown that he doesn’t have a problem picking his mom over his wife and I would expect him to do it again, and again, and again, and again into the future. What about once you want kids (if you do)? Are you going to be ok with your fiance and his mom raising them and you having no say? What about vacations? Are you going to be ok with going on vacation wherever the two of them decide you will go? What about money? Are you going to be ok with his mom deciding how to spend your money without you getting any say? All of this for the rest of your life?! The list could go on. You are very wise to be terrified of marrying this man the way things are now. That is not cold feet, that is your smart little inner voice telling you what I think you already know if you were to be truly honest with yourself.

      Have you tried going to couples counselling with your fiance to deal with this? Has he shown any effort to work with you on this issue? You deserve sooooo much more than a marriage where you know that you will never come first! That is a divorce waiting to happen. You are worth more than that. You deserve someone who is going to love you and cherish you before all others (including his mom!).

      Reply
  7. Andrea on February 13, 2014

    It’s nice to hear, I am not the only woman dealing with a MIL like so….To just explain what Ive been going through, here it is..Me and my Husband have been together for 6 years. We now have a 7 month old boy.

    Throughout my whole pregnancy I involved my MIL with everything. She came to every doctors appointment for baby, joined me in going to stores to prepare for baby, was in the room and saw me give birth to baby.
    Before she found out I was pregnant though-we were not on the best terms. This is because her and her son (my husband) used to have a relationship in which if me and him had an arguement, she was always right there….them two, putting my back against the wall in a corner by myself with nothing to defend myself…she encouraged him to treat me the way he did….
    Anyways, so when she found out I was pregnant she wrote me a letter stating she’s not happy im pregnant but there is nothing she can do, so I felt bad and tried to involve her in everything.
    So, now…7 months after my sons birth, we are living with my MIL, father in law, and my husbands two younger sisters. My husband pays rent, I buy the groceries. I do all the dirty work for his sisters that my MIL should be doing. As well as taking care of my son, and being a Nanny (I bring my son) 5 days a week. She always feels the need to say myself and my husband are raising our son wrong, and just butt in and be overbearing. Last night, my husband and I brought our son to the mall and he was laying in his stroller on his stomach and was smiling, facing forward, having a blast….while we kept close eye on him, holding his hand. He was safe. My husband shared this with my MIL and she said “You really want to be those kind of parents?” WTF? So my husband says….”He was fine mom we were watching him! I was next to him, why do you always have to bash everything I say?” She stormed upstairs said nothing and broke things upstairs, slammed doors…I couldn’t tell you why she got so mad…
    We’ve been trying to move as well, because she is too much and we viewed a home yesterday and I told her over the phone it had a stand up shower with no bath and she says “Ew”…Well its all we can afford and I was a little upset, it was insulting.
    So today she has the nerve to email my husband and say that “You guys ave brought nothing to the table” Im so offended. I WANT TO MOVE OUT ASAP

    Reply
  8. Kat on February 15, 2014

    Hi
    I have the worst MIL possible. She knows which string of my husband’s to pull and uses emotional blackmail on him, like crying and talking in a sad voice.
    The last straw was when my dad passed on. She did not call me up to offer condolenses, and neither did she come see me at the prayer meeting. She straight went and sat on the chairs. My husband and me have two children. At my dad’s prayer meeting, my husband’s uncle was crrying my daughter and I went 7 got my daughter fromm him. My in-laws turned this whole thing around and told my husband that they felt insulted because of what I did. Do I need anybody’s permission to carry my own daughter from anybody’s arms when I want? They cried to my husband and my husband on the other hand fought with me because of his parents. He should have instead stood by my side and told his parents that I am going through a hard time and they should let it go.
    Now he wants to bring his parents over (they live in another country) to visit for about 3 months and I am not happy about it.
    The time we visited my in-laws my MIL made my daughter sit on her lap and my husbands neighbor was pushing my daughter down on MIL’s lap. They did not let my daughter get up & go even after she told them she wanted to get up & that they were hurting her.
    Am I crazy for not wanting my in-laws to come over? My husband is still a momma’s boy and doesn’t have the spine to tell his parents to their face that they are wrong sometimes. He has no backbone when it comes to his parents. My MIL is very manipulative, she tells my husband that she wants us both to be happy but then does things quite the opposite and makes my husband think I am the bad person.

    Any suggestions on how to deal with her will be welcomed with open arms. I feel a lil better after putting all this down here!

    Reply
    • Lisa on February 16, 2014

      Well, it’s your house too and no, I would not let them stay and if they do I would set up very clear boundaries and stick to them. Your husband should be backing you up not his parents.

      Reply
      • Kayla on March 10, 2014

        I wouldn’t let them stay. That is awful to force your daughter like that…

        Reply
  9. Tara on February 17, 2014

    Getting married this Saturday, 22nd, in Gatlinberg, TN. Destination wedding! We knew we were going to get married somewhere out of state for a long time (been together 6.5 years) and finally decided.

    Background:
    His mother (also my boss!) is what I would call, A.D.D., Bipolar, and everyone around suffers from her chronic procrastination. I mean she is late to everything, no matter how important it is, church, family gatherings, work, funerals, weddings, everyone is always waiting AT LEAST 30 minutes after time to eat for her to bring her dish, and a lot of the time we don’t even wait and when she brings it, no one will eat it because they are full. Yesterday, no lie, she arrived 40 minutes late to the church service. At work, since she is the boss, she believes she can come in whatever time she wants. She comes in usually around lunch, and makes herself look busy by jumping on the computer to play solitaire. But everyone thinks she is such a hard worker. I absolutely cannot stand this woman. As soon as I finish school in April, NEW JOB HERE I COME!

    Anyhow, addressing current issues… Since we announced we are getting married in Gatlinberg, she has been obsessed with the whole situation. First of all, it was only supposed to be me and him. As soon as she found out she immediately called family and said “come to the wedding!” Ok, so I wanted quiet privacy in the mountains but I can handle family too. Every time she tries to speak with me about the wedding, she is just down right condescending. Everything she does and thinks should be worshiped like we worship God. She did not like us having our wedding in Gatlinberg. My fiance told her from the start, if she didn’t want to go, she didn’t have to. HAH! But that went in one ear and out the other. So every time we have a conversation, she says, you need to have the wedding here (home). Yesterday, one week from the wedding, she told me this again. Really?? I always have a comment but I’m nice and I just let her say what she wants so she feels accomplished. I will not argue or try to tell her my opinion because it is simply useless and a waste of my breath. She don’t care what anyone wants and she is determined to show her level of control. No one can tell her anything. NO ONE! You can’t talk to this woman! But she is “so smart” and “such a good planner” BS! Clueless people! Yesterday when she wanted to talk about the wedding, first she gave me a gift. It seems to me that she buys me gifts so I will allow her to have her way. I won’t! I do things my way, weather she likes it or not, and my fiancé is NOT a momma’s boy. He don’t listen to her, he just proceeds with our plans like she never said “I’m going to do this”. Yesterday during our conversation we played 21 questions… I mean really. She said, “I want to make sure everything is in order”. She never has any order to her life or anything! She asked, “What are ‘we’ doing about plates and napkins and things?” I said I am going to get those today. She said well, I will get them. I said “no one volunteered you” she said “I know, I’m getting them.” She wants to show everyone her money and how much better everything will be when she is involved. For the shower she said “I want to get you something expensive that no one else would get you.”
    Its just little things like this all the time, showing her control, ADD, chronic procrastination, and bipolar when it kicks in. I see the bipolar at work. Is there a blog on manipulative in-law bosses??? That’s a whole different story.

    I know this isn’t top notch psycho in-law, but I just thought I would share. I mean, she seems to be a good person if she would just stay in her house and out of people’s business.

    Any advice? I think she just need to be diagnosed or admitted but that won’t happen for a long time. I believe I have outstanding patience for things like this because I see everyone else blow up and I just take deep breaths and remain calm. But one day I’m afraid I will explode, I will develop heart problems, and/or have a full head of gray before I’m 40.

    Reply
  10. B on February 17, 2014

    She’s isn’t my MIL yet, but someday.

    For over 5 years I have dealt with her disrespecting my boundaries… I have asked her multiple times to refrain from making accusations, making assumptions and saying untrue & overly critical comments about who I am and my life. I feel attacked and harassed. It’s very uncomfortable being around her.

    My boyfriend won’t talk to his mom because he says he doesn’t want to be in the middle which is completely fine with me, as I do put him there. Many times she tells on me for expressing how I feel on a few things I feel strongly about. He also says and I have that his mom and I are both capable adults to work out our own problems.

    I always see and hear her saying she don’t like drama, but these things start drama and negative vibes.

    I have also asked her to refrain from giving advice and opinion about who I am and my life. I do know what’s best for me and my life more than anyone. If I want advice or opinions, I will ask for them. I am very happy with who I am and my life. Thanks to my wonderful family, especially my parents who raised me very well and to life so far for teaching me valuable lessons to make me learn and grow as well.

    She has expressed to me that she finds conflicts as drama and negativity. I view conflicts as good tool to build stronger relationships/friendships and improve oneself.

    Whenever things have gotten miscommunicated with her rather it’s text form, over the phone or in person I have done my best to either clear up by expressing what I mean in a calm manner on the things I feel strongly about, or asking questions to better understand something, or leave whatever be that isn’t worth it.

    I take my responsibilities for my actions and words with anyone and anything. So, some of this is my fault because I should have sticked to my comfortable level in sharing less and keep clear on my boundaries in the very beginning. But, I shouldn’t be the only taking responsibilities for these situations between her and myself.

    I wish she would view some things from my view. I know I have view a few things from her view. I realize you are concerned for your son and trying to help.. but when in my opinion some of her ridiculous untrue comments about me are unnecessery and inappropraite, but I feel she shouldn’t worry as I have my drama job finally, I am on the right track to finish my college to obtain my BA in Early Childhood to own my own preschool someday, I treat her son very well, and I balance her son out yet have some similar personality traits. I feel she should be happy that I make she son happy and leave my life alone finally after 5 years and work on her own life.

    I feel I have tried for 5 years to build a positive friendship with her. I have been nothing, but respectful, kind, honest, patient, understanding, and considerate her or anyone for that matter. I have looked at things from her view, because I’m an open minded individual towards some things. I have included her in things just like she has to me. I have invited her and the rest of his family to do things with me or with my boyfriend and I. I have cooked many dinners for her like she have for us. I have asked if something is needed for a family get together. I have genuinely supported and cared when her mother passed away and when her father isn’t doing well as well as other stuff. I have gotten to know her likes, dislikes, etc.

    My boyfriend isn’t super close with his family as I guess from what he’s told me is his mom isn’t like this with him.

    I know I can’t change her or control her. But I feel she’s trying to control and change me into her expecations she wants for a DIL.

    Reply
    • B on February 17, 2014

      She always twists everything I say too. :/

      Reply
      • B on February 17, 2014

        It’s like she’s “Queen” and I need to bow down to her and she does NO wrong, and places ALL blame on me.

        I don’t get my boyfriend in the middle I mean. Sorry I was typing fast.

        I am not the victim and don’t play the card as I have tried and tried and I take responsibilities for my stuff. But she makes me want to drink every single time I am around her!

        Reply
        • B on February 18, 2014

          She can be a good person to others, but I wish she was too me a little bit more like get rid of the assumptions, accusations, saying untrue comments about me and my life and less opinions/advice give… I see and say good stuff about her like he likes, etc.

          Reply
  11. B on February 17, 2014

    It’s like she’s “Queen” and I need to bow down to her and she does NO wrong, and places ALL blame on me.

    Reply
  12. JayJay on February 18, 2014

    My husband and I have been married for 8 months and together for 8 years. In the beginning I was really close to his mom. Over the years I had reason to believe that she had stolen a large financial settlement awarded to my husband years before I was ever in the picture. She was his power of attorney at the time and my husband suffered a TBI and has little memory of the events following his accident. There is no way to prove this of course. Ends just don’t meet. When I met my husband he lived in a house he was flipping with his parents. It was completely bare. Just a toilet, studs, no heat and blankets on the floor. I felt sorry for him. Years later they bought more income properties and he began working for his mother full time. He is the most humble, giving man I have ever met and he basically worked for peanuts. He thought it was what needed to be done to build the business. He lived in one of the “apartments.” It had no running water. Not even a kitchen or a bathroom. His mother would dictate what needed to be done everyday and even though they had everything purchased to put a bathroom and kitchen in it was never a priority. The other properties and shops were more important. My husband worked 10-12 hours a day everyday for years! I was livid and was just out of college and couldn’t believe a mother was okay with her son living like this even if he was. She made it so he was completely dependent on her for everything! It hurt our relationship and we broke up for a while because I couldn’t be with someone who would let himself be taken advantage of like that. We did eventually get back together and I had a great job. I started home hunting and when his mother found out I was looking 30 minutes away from her she informed me that wouldn’t do. Her son needed to be close to her. I did purchase a home, my husband moved in, quit the family business and makes twice what I make because he is incredibly intelligent and hardworking. We got married and have a son. He is officially out from her thumb but now I am paying for it. She has done and said subtlety manipulative things to me. She is the master of coming across seemingly sweet while manipulating the crap out of you. She will tell me my husband’s 80 year old grandmother isn’t cooking a huge family dinner then call and say where are you in front of everyone. Of course she says in front of everyone she didn’t tell me that. She knocks me out of the way when changing my son’s diaper and tells me I’m not doing it right. Her newest thing is to crash my honeymoon! My husband and I had our son before we got married and skipped the dream reception we both always wanted. We decided to treat ourselves and rent a beach house. We have never been on a weeks vacation the entire time we have been together. We thought this will be our honeymoon/first little family vacay with our son. I told her out of excitement our plans and never anticipated she would invite herself. What was I thinking? She asked if we wanted her to come and watch our son. I told her no thank you but that is a nice offer but we weren’t planning on needing a babysitter. She pushes the issue again: “I can get a hotel room and babysit.” No thank you that is not necessary. This is our HONEYMOON. We are looking forward to just spending time together with our son on our first vacation as a couple well…… ever. She came over my house today and pressed the issue again and says she will only come for a day. I tell her again no thank you. We just want it to be our honeymoon. Then she presses me for the exact date to which I ignore. Presses me even more. I look at her and say the 20 or the 27th. She says what day Friday, Saturday? I say it is the 20th a Saturday. Now she is just going to rent a beach house the same time. I asked my husband to call her and tell her not to do this but she won’t answer. I asked him to nip this in the bud days ago and he wouldn’t. I fear tomorrow will be too late. She will book. Looks like we will be canceling our honeymoon.

    Reply
    • Lisa on February 19, 2014

      I’m sure you’re smacking yourself over the head for giving her the information in the first place and won’t ever make that mistake again. But all isn’t lost. Is it possible you can arrange to go somewhere else at the same time and never let her know? Of course, she will be livid when she gets to the beach house and realizes you went somewhere else but hey, you’re not obligated to tell her anything and you had already made it clear you didn’t want her presence. Just a thought and good luck. Unfortunately I am experienced with having a MIL that tries to sink in the tentacles of control every chance she gets. Unfortunately for her, I’m very stubborn and have no issue with telling her what’s what.

      Reply
  13. Karin on February 25, 2014

    Well, I’ve been married now for over 20 years. My father-in-law was verablly abusive ( as was my husband) and my ML came across as a saint. I had seen some severely manipulative behaviors in my husband, which he addressed and has stopped, and I could never figure out where they came from until my FL died. She had been pulling the strings for years through him…who knew? Now, I see my ML has been the master manipulator with whole time. She played me against her own daughter for years with flattery and fake words. I served her like a trained dog because I felt so sorry for her.” Meals, gifts, holidays, lunches out etc. “You are more of a daughter to me than my own daughter”. Which wasn’t true, her duaghter had long ago gotten sick of the manipulation.

    She’ll say nice things to your face and horrible mean things behind your back, depending on her needs that day. She is the mean queen bee of the retirement home and it is her mission to rule it with her manipulations and cruel remarks about other residents. It is her show, 100% of the time and the world MUST revolve around her. BUT, when you meet her she comes across as a very sweet, charming little old lady! She will never state what she really wants or how she really feels, but constantly manipulates people with fake emergencies, fake emotions and lies. she competes with me for my husbands effections and states that people often mistake her handsome son as her husband! EWE! She’ll make lunch plans with me for her birthday and then cancel them with a lie and manipulate her friend into taking her to lunch because her daughter-in-law doesn’t care about her. Seriously, she does this and really well. And the response is always…Oh…porr ML.

    Then, she’ll call me with a fake emergency and I take her to the doctor, like I am her personal driver, even though she just used me to manipulate her friends. There is nothing wrong with her, at all, and I’ve been manipulated to spending time with her. If I don’t do something the way she likes it, rather than simply telling me, she says, Oh, so and so does this for me and she never did it this way ( which is the way I was doing it)….” Yuck!

    I finally, 100% lost trust in her when she asked me to help her designate her jewelry before she dies, she’s as healthy as a horse and she wanted to know what my daughter and I wanted…which was NOTHING! I put her off for over a year and then she manipulated my husband into begging me to meet with her. I did. She spread her jewelry out on her bed and asked me what I wanted. I felt ill and told her, not a thing. I asked her to start with her own daughter and she told me her daughter would never wear any of it. I picked up a number of things for her daughter, and she just shrugged her shoulders. After making lists for hours she kept asking me what piece would make me happy. There were just a few pieces left and I told her to pick, but she said she wanted me to be happy. Stupid me, tired of the game, I picked up a piece her husband and I had picked out for her before he died. She immediately grabbed it from my hand with an indignant snarl and stated that this was for her one and only daughter. I was embarased and then she said, “I never got my mother’s jewelry because the person who was suppose to give to me kept it for herself.” I was confused and then I saw that the whole episode was a ruse she used to shame me and to make sure things were given away according to her wishes, which is all I ever wanted in the first place. I think her jewelry is ugly and I’d never wear it. Then she gave me back all the jewelry I had given her over the years, kindly, but with a snicker that none of it was her taste. I left feeling foolish and then she wrote me a letter, stating I didn’t deserve anything becase she had given me her one and only son. (the son who is NOW a good man, but who was verbally and emotionally abusive when I got him)

    Moral of the story, sometimes manipulative ML’s are sneaky. If you have an ML that seems to favor you over her own daughter, BEWARE. Don’t give her your heart. If she is full of flattery, be careful. Do what need to be done for her as the mother of your husband, but never, I mean never, trust her with your heart, because it isn’t about being loved with folks who manipulate, but about their being loved, or even just them getting the attention they crave and the power of being able to manipulate.

    Lastly, she has told me repeatedly that she likes to ‘mess’ with people, because she can, and it amuses her. She mainulates me because at the end of the day, my heart desires to love my fellow man, not because I’m good or perfect, but because life is short and painful, why inflict harm when you could give a blessing? But, not every one deserves our hearts or our love, especially manipulative ML’s!

    Reply
  14. Kellie on February 26, 2014

    I am both glad and sad to read all these comments. Sad because none of us should have to go through this (and by God will it make sure we are all GOOD MILs some day!), but glad because I can see that I am not the only one experiencing such psycho behaviour.

    Mine also went batshit crazy after our engagement, but I should have seen it coming since I had watched her close friendships collapse by way of her manipulation and sabotage.

    She became strangely close with my fiance’s highschool girlfriend (to the point they were doing lunch together – something they never did prior to our engagement and something she had and has never done with me).

    She always seemed to be comparing herself to me – I got the sense I was an unwitting competitor in her game of who was thinner, prettier, more popular or better dressed. Not to mention the toxicity of her shallowness – always commenting on other womens’ appearance or her disbelief that I would go to the grocery store sans makeup or in sweat pants! There also seemed to be some sick competition in her own mind for her son’s (my fiance) affection. She even took a seat on the sofa that I had vacated for a visit to the bathroom, just so she could sit next to my fiance and caress his head/neck/ear. It was a sickening spectacle. Of course, he didn’t flinch. In my experience, the boys rarely see whats happening before their eyes and often turn it around to be their wife’s/fiance’s issue.

    In planning our wedding, I tried to involve her as much as possible. She didn’t come to any of the dress fittings or shopping days I arranged, and then when asked by a family member, had the cheek to say “why would I be involved? I’m just the mother of the groom” in a way that implied I had excluded her. She resorts to martyrdom all the time: when we moved into our house, my folks helped with the move. She later claimed she ‘couldn’t get time off work’ (which I know is not true). It’s almost as if she deliberately sits things out so that people can then feel sorry for her that she missed out.

    Fast foward 5 years and I thought everything was going well. Sure, I thought she had issues, but I dealt with them in my own time and tried not to let them affect our relationship too much (which is hard for me as I am very outspoken and honest!) After many episodes of the silnet treatment, by husband had finally had enough (finally!). He decided to give her a taste of her own medicine.

    Turns out, she had bottled up years of resentment. She hated me. Hated my outgoing personality; my ability to speak my mind; my strength and intelligence. She hated that I was closer to my parents than I was to her (to this point – she said she felt the “inferior parents” because I am close with my folks and we went on a week-long holiday with them. Hypocritcial given the favourtism my husband’s brother gets, but thats another story!). I am highly-strung and must be changed before I ruin her son’s life.

    Needless to say, we did not respond kindly, but responded in kind. She did not expect the retaliation and I dare say she regrets starting that battle. It has been 10 months since we saw or spoke my inlaws, yet she continues the game via social media and family members. I have to laugh, as it is she who will miss out as we are expecting our first child. I cannot help but be sad for my child that it will have only one set of grnadparents, but perhaps it is better not to expose children to such a toxic environment.

    To be continued I guess…

    Reply
    • Virginia on March 2, 2014

      Katie,

      The wedding plans feels similar to my experience. My MIL complained I wasn’t including her. Yet we had only been engaged for a week or 2, nothing had happened. Then when I asked her to get her nails done with me, no response. When I asked her to go shoe and dress shopping, she went out and bought her dress the very next day. So she had an excuse for not going. It is a loose-loose situation sometimes.

      I wish they would sometimes see how we are trying to hard to be good DILs. I think the problem is we expect them to be more friendly to us and then it isn’t and are feelings get hurt.

      Reply
  15. Virginia on March 2, 2014

    I am about to be married and honestly, I have had cold feet because of my soon to be mother in law. First of all, she is single. She is divorced, her ex has moved on with another lady.

    It all started with little things. Like she never has every really asked about me. Has never asked what I do for a living, how my pets are doing, where I came from. She has never asked anything about me. I have given her gifts, just to never see them again. And if a gift is from both me and my fiance she looks straight at him and says thanks to him. Not me.

    She also refers to my unborn children as HER grandchildren. How she already expects them to come over and play, etc.

    One time she asked me if I like my fiance’s Dad, her ex. I said yes, he seemed nice. She answer, in an evil way. “Well now, but you will see. You don’t know but you will see.”

    She has also just plan out told me “I know more then you.” Drives me crazy.

    She constantly bothers me about how I take care of my animals! I have said nice things, like I got it, but she will intervene at any cost. When I tell her I feel tension and if there was something I could do to ease it she says everything is fine.

    If I send her an email she will jump to conclusions and it becomes obvious she doesn’t even bother to read my emails.

    Now with the wedding planning. Ugh. 2 weeks in and she is already crying to my fiance that I am excluding her. Ummm…we hadn’t even started yet! Then instead of asking me how it’s going or if I was looking at dresses she just talks about her dress. Then when we showed her the ring, it was my fiance’s ring. She would look at him and say “I like your ring”, never anything to me. I might as well not be in the picture, she just sees it as a tool.

    She also told us it was stupid to invite my sister and her husband to our rehearsal dinner. Excuse me, my sister is the matron of honor and she is my sister! But my fiance’s sister is invited.

    She also goes out of her way to tell my fiance how I am wrong. How I am manipulative and throw a fit. I try to see things from her point of view, but I just don’t see any justification for how she is treating me.

    My fiance and I were going insane. So we made this rule. Every time she did something that drove us crazy we would do something for each other. Like cook dinner for each other or go out to eat or buy a present for one another. :) Makes it less stressful.

    Reply
  16. Christina on March 7, 2014

    Yikes. So happy I found this. I feel like a bad person for having issues with my MIL.
    I dont get stressed but she is making me NOT want to have a wedding. She continues to tell people she does not approve of us and she may or may not come to the wedding! Who does that. Similar to you she has been checking his bank statements ect as his bill still make it to her house. I dont know what to do.. If she doesnt RSVP I feel fine not ordering her a plate! But what if she shows up! grrr Im lost and having a hard time with how sneaky she has been. Calling all the time asking him to call it off. Its just RUDE and CRAZY

    Reply
  17. Stella John on March 7, 2014

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    Reply
  18. Jeb2020 on March 18, 2014

    I’m so glad I found this blog, atleast I know Im not alone. Heres my story:

    My fiance and I have known each other for 9years, we have been a couple for 4 of those 9 years, we have been engaged for 2 years. Our wedding is just two months away, something we are both very excited about. My fiance comes from a close knit family, particularly to his mums family. His mum has three sisters and a brother. The brother (fiances uncle) is not so close to the rest of the family fand after getting to know the rest of the family I am not surprised why!) . But his aunts, grandparents and mum are very close, to a certain extent, over involved in each others lives. His grandparents were very active in his in his upbringing and he was close to his cousins. Initially, everyone was very nice to me, but shortly after our engagement I noticed their attitudes towards me changed. His aunt would get upset if he took me out instead of hanging out with her daughters (his cousins). She also accused me of breaking up his ex girlfriend (who it turna out ahe prefered over me) and him ( which is not true). After a year of mild bickering things exploded when his aunt called him and accused me of sleeping with another man. This ofcourse was not true, but I was still furious that she would make such an accusation against me. After this, my fiance gave her a chance to apologise and maybe meet up and discuss all the problems, but she refused to meet. So he told his folks that he will have nothing to do with the aunt and that she was not welcome at the wedding (she obviously was not happy for us and tried to cause a rift between us). Since then things have gotton ugly, The rest of the family have sided with this one aunt (“co-incidently” she pays for a lot of things for everyone else like holidays, fancy clothes etc) I have been publicly insulted on social media (called things like “a fat pig” by his aunt), his grandparents refuse to acknowledge me, and the other aunts have shunned me. Interesting to note is that it was my fiance who took the decision to cut the toxic aunt out, but it became clear that they blamed me for it. The worst came when my MIL, who pretended to support my fiance and me, one day flipped out. She started emotionally blackmailing him, saying things like he was not “allowed” to uninvite her, that his grandparents raised him and that they want the aunt at the wedding and for their sake he should go back on his decision. The MIL called me and blamed my parents for her sisters behaviour. She told me I will never be half the woman she is and basically accused me of causing my fiance stress. Again, she refuses to acknowledge that her son made the decision to cut out the crazy aunt, She blames me, my parents, everyone else! She also accused my parents for having the whole wedding their way. This is not true since my fiance and I made every deciaion together. Also, In our culture the girls family hosts the grooms family on the wedding day, the groom essentially comes as a guest, and my parents are paying for the entire wedding, so I dont see what her problem is. Fortunely my fiance has stood by me for the most part. He has not gone back in his decision yet despite his mothers emotional blackmailing, I do however feel that at some point in the future he needs to set some boundaries, which he seems reluctant to do now because he doesnt want to aggrevate the situation so close to the wedding. If we as a couple decide someone is toxic and that we don’t need to interact with them (the crazy aunt) then I think his mother needs to respect our decison. This whole issue has caused immense strain on our realtionship, we love each other but he also gets roped into his mothers sad stories at every turn! Does anyone have any advise on how to deal with this furthur?

    Reply
    • Lisa on March 18, 2014

      Well, the time to set boundaries is now, not later. It’s also one thing to set them but another to stick to them. Don’t get caught drawing lines in the sand only to erase them and draw another one further back…that’s how you end up falling off the edge. No, set them and stick to them from the get go. Also, it’s your future husband’s family. He’s the one that has to speak up and set the boundaries and he is the one that has to stick with them. He should always make you his priority not his aunt.

      Reply
  19. DIL on March 21, 2014

    I am so happy I found this blog, knowing that I am not alone, and that I am not crazy for feeling this way. Here is my story, the “short” version:
    I met my now husband 6yrs ago, and have been married for about 7months. The troubles with my MIL started a couple around the time we started planning our wedding, a month or so after getting engaged abput 2 yrs ago. My MIL and I had a good relationship before, we even went on vacations together. I had a good relationship with my SIL too, although sometimes rocky because she is a handful to be nice. The first signs of trouble was when my H and I decided to have a wedding without children present. My MIL got very upset saying that his younger cousins (the 8 and 9) should be allowed to come. We refused, saying it was our wishes. Then started all the comments. The food wasnt any good, the flowers were ugly, the color scheme was awful, the rings were to expensive, the venue wasn’t nice etc etc etc. I tried to include her, without making my husband and I unhappy. I even made his sister one of my ridesmaids to make them feel more involved (thinking that was the problem, them feeling left out). I kept thinking everything would work itself out in the end, and tried not to make a fuss about how upset she and my SIL were making me. They both ruined my bachelorette party, my SIL by getting really drunk and making a scene, my MIL by badmouthing my friends and family and encouraging my SIL to act badly. I decided not to make a scene about that either, even though it hurt. A week before the wedding I told my SIL (or rather my husband told) that she had to be supportive or not be in the wedding (I had already bought her dress and flowers) and you can guess what happened. My MIL took her side (as always). The day before the wedding we arranged a dinner at the hotel where a lot of the people from out of town were staying and my FIL and MIL came, my FIL was happy and talked to the other guests, my MIL barely said two words, besides complaining about the food. She then left without saying goodbye to anyone except my husband and me(not even my parents!) and left my running to the bathroom in tears about how awful she had been. The day of the wedding she just had a frown on her face the whole day, complaining about the food (we even had a special meal made for her since she didn’t approve of the menu) and saying stuff like “there is only one Mrs X (my new last name) and that is me” and writing in the guestbook that “there was only one good thing about the wedding, her son”. She ruined all the pictures that had her in them, when we were doing portraits she replied to the photographer that “she was going to smile over her dead body”. There are about 100 more things I could add to this list, but I don’t have the energy. Anyway my husband did actually stand up to here about a month after the wedding, saying that he and I were upset about what had happened, and she just denied everything, trying to say that we were the ones who made her upset (without clarifying). Long story short my husband said the we needed a break from her and my SIL so that they could think about what has happened, still no thoughts. He has gotten a few messages saying he should be ashamed and that he is missing everything with them. My FIL who is a great person has just “sided” with his wife and daughter (he actually said those words to me) and I don’t see an end to this. I really don’t understand why they would do this and it makes my crazy. I wish I could go ack in time and just put my foot down from the start and not think things would go away. Probably wouldnt change the current situation, but I maybe our day wouldnt have been as bad.

    Reply
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  21. Shae on March 30, 2014

    My mother in law is pretty strange. Her biggest issue is “overstepping” her way into my husband and mys life. My husband is an only child. My mother in law is obsessed with him. she even went as far as to mark my birth control shot dates to see the doc in her calander up until a year or 2 ago, among other personal dates for him or I. When we got married she wanted to help. But her help consisted of, if she paid then that meant she picked it out. Whether that be the place of the reception, which photographer we used, what food we got, etc. SO, we opted out on that deal and said wed handle it ourselves. ANYWAY….after that she sat us down and said look…..since we cant help then we want to pay for your honeymoon. SHE chose where we went, what hotel we stayed at, the dates in which we stayed AND added that her and her husband would be joining us same time same hotel. HA! I shot that one down real quick. She boo hooed for awhile but ultimatley still paid and sent us. ALONE. like a honeymoon should be! THE most recent thing was for xmas…..weve needed and wanted new furniture for a long time. Well we were informed by the MIL that wed be getting a special delivery for xmas. My husband ended up upsetting his motherso she canceled the delivery and we just got giftcards for xmas. Which was great. BUT recently found out that she had chosen furniture for us (living room) and was having that delivered. What I dont get Iis WHAT in her messed up mind made her think that chossing my husband and my furniture was ok? She never even asked us what type or color we would like….nothing. I am very greatful that she was willing to foot the bill. But I would have wanted to pick out furniture that would be in my own home. SHE just doesnt understand these things……she once told me that I didnt tell my husband we were expecting our baby “the right way” since it was over the phone……I just dont know what in the world her issue is. ONE minute her and I are able to laugh and talk for hours and the next……shes overstepping beyond belief! Someone help me figure this women out! please help…..

    Reply
  22. Fips on April 2, 2014

    Hi guys,
    I so can relate to the evil MIL stories. For about 14 years I tried to figure out what I did wrong or what I needed to do to make things better with me and the MIL. Similar stories to all of the above.

    Then, I bumped into this book and the lights went on:
    In Sheep’s Clothing, Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People by George Simon, PhD.

    I finally understand and have actual practical tools to manage MIL’s behavior. It is still not easy because I am emotionally involved and worry about her behavior when I see her, but at least I can see clearly now and am practicing how to manage her. I am getting there :-)

    Reply
  23. man and a van on April 6, 2014

    Why don’t we help local businesses by hiring a local ‘man and
    a van’ to transport our bulky packing cases.

    Reply
  24. Ann on April 8, 2014

    Hey my MIL is beyond manipulative and crazy me and my husband have been married for a year now and she makes us miserable she tries to treat him like a baby when he’s a grown man now, my husband and I both have told her she needs to quit being so obsessive with him but she just tries to make him feel guilty and puts a pity party on so she can try and control him.He loves his mom but he loves me also but it seems like no matter what we do if we tell her nicely,bluntly or what it don’t go through her head and she said she won’t change her ways.She calls 20 times in a row some days and when I try to have a conversation with her all she talks about his my husband and literally she asked me “Is he pooping good today?! ” I mean I don’t follow him in the bathroom and see what color it is or whatever. I mean she doesn’t understand how we feel about her annoying us 24/7, trying to control my husband,& her just wanting him to move back in with her.She also tries to make me mad on purpose by doing certain things that are literally crazy.My husband feels that he has to choose between my mil or me and I don’t want him to choose its just she won’t stop.So please any advice

    Reply
  25. jessica on April 13, 2014

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    Reply
  26. Dolly on April 16, 2014

    I can totally relate to some or all of these stories here. I am currently going through a situation with my MIL. I have been engaged for a year and a half and finally set a date and started planning our wedding. We got the surprise of our lives when my fiancés parents offered to pay for the wedding. We were delighted, but somewhere in my gut, I Knew that someday that can come bite me back in the rear. Well, we have been planning for 3 months, we are getting married in October of this year, and I have to say that its been a living hell! My MIL wants to be included in everything and every time I seem to make a choice its something she doesn’t like. She is having a fit for the flowers, she is having a fit because i wanted to have flower girls and doesn’t think i need too. she is having a fit about the colors that I’m choosing. she is having a fit with the DJ, that there shouldn’t be too “much” modern music played and he can’t be too loud. When we don’t include her and just pass her a bill she flips out, starts manipulating my fiancé behind my back and throwing in his face that they are paying for the wedding, so they have a say. I’m sorry but they got married 45years ago and had their time. Now when their son is getting married, its not even what he wants. They are inviting so much people that our invitation list doubled and now she wants to dissect our list because we have too many people. This is causing so much tension in our relationship that we want to call it quits and get married our way. We want an intimate wedding with a few of our closest family and friends. My own mother starts crying hysterically because she thinks I have no dignity, that this woman is humiliating me and my fiancé. the problem is that i know she’s right. it’s so hard because my fiance stands up to her but it doesn’t help, he is so used to her tantrums that he rather walk away. I guess i have to figure this out before I say I do!

    Reply
    • Lisa on April 16, 2014

      Dolly,

      There is one absolute way you can stop this madness and take back the control over your own wedding day and that is for you and your fiance to tell her, thanks but no thanks, that you have decided because of her actions that you will pay for your own wedding. And that’s it. I’m assuming the invites didn’t go out yet. If you have to make adjustments for your budget then do so, otherwise this is not only going to ruin your day and you will not look back on it with any fondness but it’s also going to follow you into your marriage with other things.

      Reply
  27. jlvn11 on April 17, 2014

    My MIL is definitely a manipulator. You can’t even have a rational conversation with the woman. Her mind she does no wrong. My husband showed her the door a year ago and she still runs her mouth to anyone that will listen and say how she wishes we never got married BC we have such a horrible marriage. This woman knows nothing about our marriage she wasn’t even invited to our wedding BC she told my husband she would just make it too our next one. We also have a 1 year old together. My husband has a son with his ex wife and she just adores my step son but never even makes an attempt to know our daughter but my husband’s ex wife just had a baby and she refers to that baby as her new grand baby and tells everyone how excited she is about it. She wouldn’t even come to the hospital when our daughter was born and my husband used to beg her to come see her.. I don’t know what else to do other than not having anything to do with her.

    Reply
    • jlvn11 on April 17, 2014

      Make it to HIS next wedding*

      Reply
  28. EC on April 18, 2014

    We’re pretty convinced my fiance’s mother has borderline personality disorder. She’s also been emotionally and verbally abusive; also pretends she hasn’t done anything wrong and acts confused when we try to have a conversation about how she’s hurt us. The great thing we have going for us is that we live far away from her. Any tips? Thank you for posting!

    Reply

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