Author Topic: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer  (Read 53215 times)

SKL-HOU

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #100 on: December 16, 2015, 10:59:52 AM »
I didn't read all the posts.
So your wife basically got her Mrs. degree and she is now done with school because of that. I cannot blame the MIL for wanting her daughter to finish school. While you are newly weds, you never know what will happen in the future. It will never hurt her to get the diploma while not getting it may. It seems the hard part is done so I do not understand why she is being such a baby.
No matter how much pressure your MIL is putting on you, it is not nice to call her a bitch. What she is asking for is not unreasonable and it really is in the best interest of her kid (your wife).

asauer

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #101 on: December 17, 2015, 07:44:25 AM »
This isn't a money problem- it's an MIL problem.  She'll find something else to complain about.  Keep the 80k, finish the degree and establish a low contact relationship.

TomTX

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #102 on: December 17, 2015, 07:58:42 AM »
This isn't a money problem- it's an MIL problem.  She'll find something else to complain about.  Keep the 80k, finish the degree and establish a low contact relationship.

A "low contact relationship" with a Russian Jewish MIL while everyone is living in Israel? Good luck!

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #103 on: December 18, 2015, 02:36:11 PM »
Bullies will bully until someone stands up to them.  But for the love of god, get the degree finished.
+1!!!!!!!!!!

TomTX

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #104 on: December 19, 2015, 06:09:42 AM »
OP hasn't responded since July. Maybe the MIL is holding them hostage until the thesis is defended - otherwise, what a waste of $80k! ;)

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #105 on: December 19, 2015, 08:31:41 AM »
I suspect the OP wanted sympathy and a chorus of voices telling him that wasting all the money for the thesis makes lots of sense.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #106 on: December 19, 2015, 10:41:56 PM »
Hello all! I haven't checked on this thread in a while... And I'm sad to say that thesis has not been defended. Yet. not for lack of me trying gently to remind DW, asking for updates, encouraging her. We are 8 months pregnant with a boy now and I am being very patient with DW and trying not to nag. We have had quite a few discussions on the topic and she did clearly stated that she wants to finish this. But, her professor is VERY slow in setting up the defense. As I expected. And she is preoccupied with her current job and the pregnancy. I don't want to be as nagging as MIL, but this is really dragging. DW /MIL relationship continues to be strained, all through pregnancy. We have moved to DW's hometown (closer to her job, but further from mine, 1/4 mile from MIL) this was planned but happened earlier than expected. . DW still hasn't figured out how to stand up to her mother or completely ignore the comments. I haven't put myself in the middle yet. Not planning on it anytime soon. I am supportive of DW when she goes through a rough patch. This is where it stands. Thanks for all your advice  and support. Can't agree more but since I am not looking for a fight I haven't been pushing these issues forward

Doubleh

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #107 on: December 20, 2015, 06:26:26 AM »
Congratulations on the pregnancy! Yes it's disappointing that the defence hasn't happened yet but it sounds like at least concrete steps are being taken to make it happen - it's important to keep them in track. For the purpose of clarity I do think your Mil has a pretty fair point about the degree, but it sounds like the family problems go pretty deep and this is just one manifestation of a wider issue

Apologies for the long response but we experienced somewhat similar issues with a parent when my daughter was born. At the worst I thought we may need to cut off contact, but we were able to turn things around and in doing so transformed the relationship with the parent. Seeing how much they love and care for my daughter has also helped us appreciate them more than we ever did. But you do need to address this situation and do it now, not in 6 weeks time when you're both sleep deprived, exhausted, hormonal and Mil is making things harder for you not easier.

Having recently lived through the early parenthood days they are wonderful and rewarding but will put a lot of strain on you, your wife and your relationship. Having family near by can be a huge blessing and is not to be underestimated. However if things have been difficult to this point don't think a kid will make them easier. There are lots of touch points that can cause disruption - but on the plus side it is a great opportunity to reframe your relationships with MIL. She's evidently big on parental authority - good, use that. You're the parents now. You can explain that you want her to be a big part of her grandchild's life, but that she needs to respect your roles as the parents and not undermine you both.

Basically what you need to do is to set healthy boundaries - I'd urge you to read up on this or even if you can to attend a session or two with a counsellor who can help you do this, along with your wife as it's something you need to do together. Up thread you said that your Mil doesn't like to be educated - the beauty of setting boundaries is that you don't need to educate her. You don't need her permission or her buy in to do it. Setting boundaries is something you and your wife do together, for yourselves. You don't need mil to change her behavior or understand how she makes you feel. It isn't even about the Mil, its just about the two of you deciding what behaviors you will and won't tolerate.

So for example, you don't ask her not to nag your wife, or try and explain how much it hurts your wife when she does. You don't try and change her, because you can't. Instead you decide a boundary and what your response is, and explain that to her dispassionately. For example tell her firmly but non emotionally that the defence is being scheduled and you'll tell her when you have news. In the meantime its not a topic you're prepared to discuss. Explain the consequences of she does raise it, for example youll politely remind her that it's off the table but if she persists you will have to disengage from the conversation by leaving the house of hanging up the phone. If this happens you follow through, not just in an emotional way. It's just the unavoidable logical consequence of your boundary being over stepped.

It's easy in theory but does take commitment - from both you and your wife to implement. It can be scary at first and initially she is likely to escalate her negative behavior in the hope of eliciting a response. This is where it's really important that you stick to your guns, don't be swayed and don't get drawn into am argument. Firm and dispassionate. Most likely she will pretty quickly learn to play by the new rules, her desire to spend time with her grandchild will help her find a way. This can get messy in the short term which is why I suggest counselling or at the very least reading proper books written by people with qualifications rather than random strangers on the Internet. But it can be life changing.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2015, 07:07:39 AM by Doubleh »

Miss Prim

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #108 on: December 20, 2015, 06:53:07 AM »
This is why my husband and I only paid for a Bachelor's degree and not a Master's with our two kids.  Honestly, if I paid $80,000 for my kids education, I would be upset too if they were that close to finishing and chose not to. 

Just have your wife finish her degree and I'm sure the MIL will back off.  Or pay them back.

Just a different prospective on this. 

                                                                                      Miss Prim

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #109 on: December 20, 2015, 07:31:00 AM »
I agree with your perspective regarding MIL's right to be angry or upset. However the disproportionate response all involved had to this situation was and is quite overwhelming. after all DW had no intention of not finishing or quitting just before the finish. I am also growing to know the usual scripts MIL is using to manage her reality and the conditioned response DW has to these scripts. Also her complete inability (in my eyes it's a won't disguised as a can't) to stand up for herself in front of the MILs shenanigans.
I've tried talking about this with her and I'm tired of the usual "ignore her and it will go away" routine. Setting boundaries is not easy and I keep trying to offer ideas and experience in the matter, all the while practicing compassion towards all involved. It's not easy.

Doubleh

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #110 on: December 20, 2015, 08:49:10 AM »
Properly song healthy boundaries is not the same as talking to her or ignoring it and hoping it will go away. You're correct though that our is not easy but it is worth the effort. That's why I'd suggest a couple of seasons of counselling or at the very least a good book to guide you.

LeRainDrop

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #111 on: December 21, 2015, 03:21:03 PM »
Thanks for providing an update, whybe.  Congratulations on becoming a dad!  Wishing you and your wife luck with the inlaws and whatever impact the new grandbaby has on that relationship.

Frankies Girl

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #112 on: December 21, 2015, 04:40:44 PM »
I personally really hate this update. Everything about it makes me really sad. Basically your wife is not doing jack as far as establishing healthy boundaries or completing her degree, and you are hiding your feelings because you are afraid of her reaction and swallowing all that resentment is just going to fester and eventually have to come up at some point. And you are adding a child to that mess, AND you moved closer to the inlaws you claim are the problem (they're not; it's your wife) which is just insane.

I honestly think your wife has no intention of finishing her degree and never has. I don't care what she says, she's not going to and I'm sure that once this kid is here, her world with be all about him and her job, and then a year or two down the road (just in time to maybe start thinking about tackling that degree) it will be time for kid #2 and maybe she'll have to stay home with the kids and quit the job somewhere in there, and before you know it, 10 years gone and she won't be able to even tell you a summary of what her thesis was about.

She is on a path to get what she wants and will ignore any and all attempts to do things that are too complicated, and you are not comfortable even having a serious discussion with your spouse to come to be able to come up with a compromise since she sees it as "fighting words" if you dare to question anything she does. And everything is always someone else's fault why she can't do things she's supposed to be doing (but actually that she just doesn't want to do and would rather be doing something else). Her mother, the instructor, her job, now the baby - she will use any excuse in the book to avoid responsibility and face her issues head-on. You should be very aware of this pattern NOW because it will only get worse if she refuses to recognize this major issue.

And you are walking on eggshells - making excuses for her selfish behavior, and going along with whatever she decides she wants to do regardless if it is a good decision.

I would love to be proven wrong, but I honestly think that will not happen.


I wish you much luck, because you are definitely going to need it.


whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #113 on: December 22, 2015, 06:02:19 AM »
I believe that your face punch is in order and it is well received. Well deserved too.

PhrugalPhan

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #114 on: December 22, 2015, 09:05:20 AM »
+1 to Frankies Girl's response.  When someone is happy with their environment, its very unlikely they will change it, even if it will make things better.  Hopefully we're wrong, but I doubt it.

Frankies Girl

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #115 on: December 22, 2015, 03:40:59 PM »


She is on a path to get what she wants and will ignore any and all attempts to do things that are too complicated, and you are not comfortable even having a serious discussion with your spouse to come to be able to come up with a compromise since she sees it as "fighting words" if you dare to question anything she does. And everything is always someone else's fault why she can't do things she's supposed to be doing (but actually that she just doesn't want to do and would rather be doing something else). Her mother, the instructor, her job, now the baby - she will use any excuse in the book to avoid responsibility and face her issues head-on. You should be very aware of this pattern NOW because it will only get worse if she refuses to recognize this major issue.


Anyone have advice on getting past the bolded portion? My DH does not take words very well.... Anything I mention different to what they're doing or thinking gets a very harsh angry response. He seems to take everything as a deep criticism to himself and then responds with anger. Later its usually followed with bashing himself. I've resorted to just keeping my mouth shut. But this also messes with me as I feel unable to discuss anything at all. Everything turns into a fight no matter how little or big the topic. We can't talk about anything at all let alone real pressing money issues. Of course not talking about future plans or actionable changes leaves me deeply unfulfilled and just going with whatever comes along. But really any resources would help!

Counseling ASAP. If he won't go, then go by yourself to see if you can work on your own responses (and also if you even want to repair this relationship since it sounds very lonely and sad where you are).

The anger is a "no way am I listening to you - how dare you think your opinion matters" move, and then followed by the "I'll put myself down so bad you'll feel like you have to pretend it is all okay and comfort me and just ignore that I got my way again" move. Not good, extremely manipulative.

If you do think he's a good person somewhere in there and your relationship could be saved, then I'd explain to your spouse that you love them, want to have a better relationship with them and are tired of not being able to have a real conversation about things concerning your relationship/future without it dissolving into a fight, but you need professional help and want to see a counselor/therapist. Make sure and say that you both need help in figuring out how to communicate without anyone feeling blamed or shamed. Some people just don't have good communication skills when it comes to expressing worries and fears and really deep stuff. That's not anyone's fault. Come to them from a place of love and support, and they may be amendable to counseling.

Something along the lines of "Honey, I think we need help... aren't you tired of us never being able to talk about stuff without it turning into a fight? I love you and I know you love me, and it makes me so sad that we keep messing this up. I want to see about going to a counselor who might be able to help us fix this and make us a stronger couple and feel safe and comfortable about talking things through no matter what comes up in our lives..." (big thing is to not make it sound like it's all the spouse - you are a team, so lots of "we" statements and how you want to make things better)

I'd suggest also reading the book Stop Walking On Eggshells as well. Even if your spouse isn't a BPD (although yours does kind of hit the warning bells), the book is really nice for learning how to navigate a relationship when you have a partner that is manipulative/controlling. Or at the very least, giving you some coping mechanisms and deciding if this is how you want to live your life going forward.



Pigeon

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #116 on: December 22, 2015, 07:37:33 PM »
What a gigantic waste of your MIL's money, and your MIL has every right to be completely disgusted.  I agree with Frankies Girl's assessment of the situation. Your wife had no intention of finishing up.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #117 on: December 22, 2015, 10:51:34 PM »
What a gigantic waste of your MIL's money, and your MIL has every right to be completely disgusted.  I agree with Frankies Girl's assessment of the situation. Your wife had no intention of finishing up.

let's look at the facts for a minute:

A. Money is not yet wasted. How is it wasted if DW already has a job in her field on the premise of her completing the MA?
B. DW is on track to defend the thesis. She will receive her three articles this week.
C.whether she finishes or not remains to be seen.


Have a lot more to say about the situation. But the rest is either my analysis of it or my opinion. So we'll leave it at that.

hoping2retire35

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #118 on: December 23, 2015, 08:21:55 AM »
1) your mouth is shut for the next month until baby is born, DW needs no extra stress while pregnant. you must bear this burden.EDIT: put that goofy fake smile on your face and make sure DW thinks you are in baby heaven, even if you are really pissed

I am not sure if your MIL is just pissed about the money or is toxic, but it is probably both.

after baby is born you will want a few days of bliss and happy memories, but then you will need to not just be dad and DH but DAD and HUSBAND. accept no compromise, be stubborn as hell and always right(this means thinking a lot about a situation and being sure they cannot corner you, mentally/psychologically). I have some very toxic relationships with mother and in laws; currently mother is on not talking(or any communication) terms and MIL and FIL are on the avoid anything other than cordial talk(and they know it). Make it clear sometime between 3days and 1 week of birth to your DW that you will no longer speak or even be in the presence of her mother. If you have to see her in passing do not speak only glare. If your MIL is watching the baby or "helping" then do what I do, leave. see video below
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36s1yEdb5QI

You will have to keep this up for a while, maybe years. My DW only confronted her parents 8 months ago (been married over 9 years and oldest kid is 3 1/2). But this will take you being strong and able to back her up and talking to her so she can be comfortable doing this. maybe consult an aunt or older sibling, you will need allies. Sounds like you did this but maybe your mother was the type to listen to reason. Spending $80k and not seeing her graduate would make anyone pissed so maybe MIL is not hopeless. so my next point is...

DO NOT pay back money, just get the degree. Everyone will be happier with this and MIL will have less ammunition.

keep us up to date.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2015, 08:34:09 AM by hoping2retire35 »

Frugalman19

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #119 on: December 23, 2015, 08:30:35 AM »
I agree with others, leave the wife alone until the baby is born.

I would be soo pissed too if I paid all that money and my child decided not defend her thesis. Offering to pay the money back is childish and will only cause more resentment, so get that out of your head. Just have her finish already, it's better for her and her mom will be happy, it's what we call in America a "win win". For the record, my MIL is a bitch, and my grandmother was to my dad as well. It's pretty common here in the US haha.

zephyr911

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #120 on: December 23, 2015, 08:40:52 AM »
Anyone have advice on getting past the bolded portion?
What bolded portion?

I'm a red panda

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #121 on: December 23, 2015, 09:02:48 AM »
There's this amazing stuff called "contraception", and it will actually prevent pregnancy until after college degrees are completed.

There's also this amazing thing called "multi-tasking" which allows one to finish college degrees even when pregnant.  (My next door neighbor is a medical intern and is a Mom of 3. She had her first while completing her undergrad and the second two while in med school. It can be done.)

Defend the thesis; ignore the MIL.

I did my Master's in a traditionally female field. At least three-quarters, if not more, of the cohort was pregnant sometime during the program, or had multiple children, and all of us worked full time. Me not having kids was the rare exception. (The two men in the cohort had kids too.)

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #122 on: December 23, 2015, 10:12:31 PM »
after baby is born you will want a few days of bliss and happy memories, but then you will need to not just be dad and DH but DAD and HUSBAND. accept no compromise, be stubborn as hell and always right(this means thinking a lot about a situation and being sure they cannot corner you, mentally/psychologically). I have some very toxic relationships with mother and in laws; currently mother is on not talking(or any communication) terms and MIL and FIL are on the avoid anything other than cordial talk(and they know it). Make it clear sometime between 3days and 1 week of birth to your DW that you will no longer speak or even be in the presence of her mother. If you have to see her in passing do not speak only glare. If your MIL is watching the baby or "helping" then do what I do, leave. see video below
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36s1yEdb5QI

You will have to keep this up for a while, maybe years. My DW only confronted her parents 8 months ago (been married over 9 years and oldest kid is 3 1/2). But this will take you being strong and able to back her up and talking to her so she can be comfortable doing this. maybe consult an aunt or older sibling, you will need allies.

Just a bit of clarification - if I take this advice what's my endgame? Also how do I bridge this to DW? Just tell her in advance, then lead by example and hope she follows? How do I back her up without being there (again whenever I am not there she gets pestered by the family)?

Also, by allies you mean from her family? She's a bit of the black sheep in the family, and her mother is making sure everyone is ganging up on her. Even though she's not the eldest she did most of the trail blazing in front of the parents. Neither her or her sisters had a the chance of a teenage rebellion and I think this is kind of it. Sisters are out of the question, one is too resentful or seemingly apathetic to DW and the rest of the family, the youngest is too young to form her own opinion and runs to tell mom when DW has tried to confide in her (the opposite is never true).
Aunt is also a tentacle of the MILtopus, can't guarantee that she'll be on DW's side. So... A bit of a pickle.

former player

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #123 on: December 24, 2015, 06:59:42 AM »
You could try using the arrival of a new baby, as in: there have been difficulties recently apparent in the relationship between DW and her mother, it would be better if that were not added to the big job of being new parents and if the baby were not exposed to family strife in the future, and can the two of you together develop a way of managing the relationship between DW and her mother which will make everyone happier?

Assuming that MIL wants to see the baby, you and DW can then discuss saying something along the lines of "We would love it if you see the baby, but new parenthood is hitting us both hard and we can't deal with anything else at the moment.  Our plans at the moment are to enjoy the baby and settle into our new life as parents.  We'll get back to you on anything else as soon as we can."  Repeat final sentence as necessary, and close down the conversation immediately if you've had to say it more than once.

hoping2retire35

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #124 on: December 24, 2015, 08:31:30 AM »
after baby is born you will want a few days of bliss and happy memories, but then you will need to not just be dad and DH but DAD and HUSBAND. accept no compromise, be stubborn as hell and always right(this means thinking a lot about a situation and being sure they cannot corner you, mentally/psychologically). I have some very toxic relationships with mother and in laws; currently mother is on not talking(or any communication) terms and MIL and FIL are on the avoid anything other than cordial talk(and they know it). Make it clear sometime between 3days and 1 week of birth to your DW that you will no longer speak or even be in the presence of her mother. If you have to see her in passing do not speak only glare. If your MIL is watching the baby or "helping" then do what I do, leave. see video below
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36s1yEdb5QI

You will have to keep this up for a while, maybe years. My DW only confronted her parents 8 months ago (been married over 9 years and oldest kid is 3 1/2). But this will take you being strong and able to back her up and talking to her so she can be comfortable doing this. maybe consult an aunt or older sibling, you will need allies.



Just a bit of clarification - if I take this advice what's my endgame? Also how do I bridge this to DW? Just tell her in advance, then lead by example and hope she follows? How do I back her up without being there (again whenever I am not there she gets pestered by the family)?

Also, by allies you mean from her family? She's a bit of the black sheep in the family, and her mother is making sure everyone is ganging up on her. Even though she's not the eldest she did most of the trail blazing in front of the parents. Neither her or her sisters had a the chance of a teenage rebellion and I think this is kind of it. Sisters are out of the question, one is too resentful or seemingly apathetic to DW and the rest of the family, the youngest is too young to form her own opinion and runs to tell mom when DW has tried to confide in her (the opposite is never true).
Aunt is also a tentacle of the MILtopus, can't guarantee that she'll be on DW's side. So... A bit of a pickle.

Well, the only endgame you can singlehandly bring by doing this is establishing some boudaries and giving yourself and DW some space form her mother. This will not "fix" the situation. Doesn't help by moving closer to MIL. I had the advantage that my siblings and DWs siblings were already antagonistic to our parents, and we were both sorta the 'favorites' in our families, so when we made this confrontation is was a little easier to establish the boundaries and the 'balance of power', if you will. So your situation my be a little different than mine.

If your DW is the black sheep of her family then you will need to work to do some one-upmanship and the above strategy will not be very effective for your situation. Making the best dish at family gatherings and making sure everyone knows; complementing DW in front of family. Make her little sister your new family bestie. Figure out if you can get aunt on your side. Try to indirectly make fissures between MIL and her family. Getting that degree will make a big difference.

Your situation sounds a little to complicated to offer many suggestions on an Internet forum that would really be helpful. I would suggest you get some books on narcissism, co-dependency and do some internet searches on what exactly is going on in your family and then reading about that disorder or family dynamic. Once I did that I understood our situation a lot better.

Cassie

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #125 on: December 25, 2015, 12:14:50 PM »
Finish the degree or pay the $ back. It really is that simple.  I don't blame the MIL for being upset at this point.  The smart thing to do is finish the degree. She will regret it later if she does not.

MrsPete

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #126 on: December 25, 2015, 07:48:55 PM »
Honestly, if I paid $80,000 for my kids education, I would be upset too if they were that close to finishing and chose not to. 
Yeah, as a mother currently paying for two children to attend college classes, I am HAPPY to be able to provide my children with a college education ... but I skimped and saved for years, did without things I wanted, traveled less than I would've liked ... and I expect my kids to respect the sacrifices I made by making the most of my financial investment.  I totally understand a mother being upset that those sacrifices didn't end in a degree. 

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #127 on: December 26, 2015, 07:10:06 PM »
Again emphasizing - didn't end in a degree in a timely manner according to a previously-never-discussed schedule. The degree will be completed.

hoping2retire35

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #128 on: December 26, 2015, 07:37:36 PM »

My Brothers and I went through this a few years back with our own mother, and it only stopped once we sat her down and told her she needed to stop acting the way she did. I shared this story with DW on several occasions, and with my MIL some time ago. It did not go well, but not to my face. MIL has expressed her disdain and disapproval of the whole "kids educating their parents" thing, and believes and acts as if this is a one-way street and that children of all ages should obey and respect their parents. For some reason my DW's family refrains from putting the shit to the fan while I'm there and always does it when DW is there on her own. I only get to hear about it when my reaction has no effect (can't stand up alongside DW as support). DW also insists I stay passive on this since she "doesn't want to bring me into it", doesn't matter that by our relationship (and marriage) we are already knee-deep "into it"...
I'm basically trying to find the way to communicate this to my DW without doing the work for her. I want to find the way to make her see that this step is both necessary and feasible for her own development, without getting in between her and her mother.

This was the most telling post, and I think when people say something along the lines of get the degree and everything will better they are ignoring how toxic the situation is.
Could she not go there unless you are there? What about spending time with your family instead of going their as much?
Will this be MILs first grandchild? That will change a lot of family dynamics, even if not.
May be best to sit and wait and see what happens, the child may remove some of the black sheep aspect. It would be good of you to pay close attention to how different people react to both of you and the child, after the child is born. Do others in the family know what is going on?

kathrynd

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #129 on: December 27, 2015, 08:18:11 AM »
When it comes down to it, this situation is between the mother and your wife.

MIL rightfully is upset. She gave a huge amount of money to pay for a specific purpose.
The daughter is either going to fulfill her end of the bargain....or she isn't.
At the moment,it sounds like she isn't.

Until she either finishes, or pays the money back....the situation will not change.
The money or the degree isn't even the issue...that is just the  subject, there is always an underlying issue.
Disrespect?...

hoping2retire35

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #130 on: December 27, 2015, 01:47:43 PM »
When it comes down to it, this situation is between the mother and your wife.

MIL rightfully is upset. She gave a huge amount of money to pay for a specific purpose.
The daughter is either going to fulfill her end of the bargain....or she isn't.
At the moment,it sounds like she isn't.

Until she either finishes, or pays the money back....the situation will not change.
The money or the degree isn't even the issue...that is just the  subject, there is always an underlying issue.
Disrespect?...

This is what I was getting at. People who haven't had family like this I believe just don't get it, even those of us who had were pretty confused for a long time until we made sense of the situation. Of course, the OP and his wife will continue to have problems until the degree is gotten, really no getting around that. Sorry, but he is married and about to have their first child, pretty much any problem either one has the other one also has, no problem is exclusive to just one.

TomTX

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #131 on: December 27, 2015, 04:03:36 PM »
Again emphasizing - didn't end in a degree in a timely manner according to a previously-never-discussed schedule. The degree will be completed.

Oh really? Lets go back to the beginning of your very first post in this thread:


We're a young couple, recently married. My DMIL is putting DW through an emotional hell over not finishing MA degree on schedule, which is basically a technicality since she has handed in her thesis last April. She was supposed to defend her thesis last April (last stage before getting her diploma), but since then we got married, traveled for a few weeks, then she got a job and had to go through training and a state exam for her position, which kind of swamped her schedule and prevented her from going through the defence.

Bolded by me for emphasis.

Instead of defending, she fucked around instead of completing her planned defense on time. And I mean "fucked around" both figuratively and literally. She's 8 months pregnant and April was 8 months ago. Apparently y'all never heard of a condom. Or birth control pills. Or the IUD. Or a damn calendar, since you just needed to avoid a single week that month you were fucking around.

My wife was still doing Taekwondo 3 nights a week while she was 8 months pregnant, and successfully tested for a belt while 8 months pregnant. She did get an accommodation and the sparring was non-contact (ie, you throw the kicks, evade, etc - but you stay a few inches away from actually hitting) - I bet the committee would let your wife sit in a chair for the defense or something.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #132 on: December 28, 2015, 08:35:09 AM »
Valid point, even if you are using a tone that I do not approve of. How about we had a plan for our family growth that stated we wanted to "get busy" when we did. DW has had enough high scientific education to equip her with the knowledge of human biology and physiology to know she wanted to be done having babies before age 35, when the chance of defects and all sorts of genetic maladies increases significantly. Seeing she wanted more than 1 child it was sensible to start earlier than not.
Not that I have to justify my family planning to a grumpy troll like you ToTomTX. I appreciate all y'all's help but seriously this is a lot out of line.
Not that I have any fucks to give you after I gave em all to my wife.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #133 on: December 28, 2015, 08:40:39 AM »
How about, since the baby is coming, y'all stop shitting on them for getting pregnant.

I'm disappointed that the degree isn't finished yet, but it sounds like OP is too.

SU

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #134 on: December 28, 2015, 09:25:33 AM »
The money spent on a degree is a sunk cost. Also, it's MIL's sunk cost. As far as defending the thesis goes, your wife has a job, a family and a great partner. As of today, will defending the thesis increase her current or future happiness and earning power? Would she start the same course today, given that she already has a job? If not, just leave it unfinished. You know, like Bill Gates did.

MIL issues are separate, but it sounds like they are a longer term project than just defending a thesis.

TomTX

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #135 on: December 28, 2015, 10:27:19 AM »
Valid point, even if you are using a tone that I do not approve of. How about we had a plan for our family growth that stated we wanted to "get busy" when we did. DW has had enough high scientific education to equip her with the knowledge of human biology and physiology to know she wanted to be done having babies before age 35, when the chance of defects and all sorts of genetic maladies increases significantly. Seeing she wanted more than 1 child it was sensible to start earlier than not.
Not that I have to justify my family planning to a grumpy troll like you ToTomTX. I appreciate all y'all's help but seriously this is a lot out of line.
Not that I have any fucks to give you after I gave em all to my wife.

*shrug* Y'all deserve facepunches. If you want a sweeter response, I suggest Bogleheads.

Maladies and defects only go up slightly after 35, moderately after 40. As scientists ourselves, we researched it in depth, and any scientist should be able to do the same. Popular magazines have the drama of defects after 35, but the reality is different.

And y'all only had to wait a month. Irrelevant for issues.

soupcxan

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #136 on: December 28, 2015, 01:26:34 PM »
The money spent on a degree is a sunk cost.

When you are 99% through with something, the 99% is a sunk cost, but if you can complete it for only 1% more effort, you should put in the 1% and get it done.

You know, like Bill Gates did.

That's the worst strawman argument I've read in a while. Both Melinda Gates and Priscilla Chan (Zuckerberg) finished their masters degrees.
« Last Edit: December 28, 2015, 01:33:15 PM by soupcxan »

deborah

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #137 on: December 28, 2015, 01:46:46 PM »
And y'all only had to wait a month. Irrelevant for issues.
Yes! This is the crux of the matter. And I have yet to find anyone who has needed to leave work the instant they get pregnant. The pregnancy is almost totally irrelevant to the issue of whether she has finished her degree. She is just stalling. And this thread was started in JULY, so she has managed to stall for another six months.

TomTX

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #138 on: December 28, 2015, 03:52:20 PM »
And y'all only had to wait a month. Irrelevant for issues.
Yes! This is the crux of the matter. And I have yet to find anyone who has needed to leave work the instant they get pregnant. The pregnancy is almost totally irrelevant to the issue of whether she has finished her degree. She is just stalling. And this thread was started in JULY, so she has managed to stall for another six months.

Hell, he could have still gotten her pregnant, they just needed to delay their several weeks vacation/party time so that she could defend in April.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #139 on: December 29, 2015, 11:32:35 PM »
UPDATE
===========

the articles for the defense came through. No more than 30 days to the defense. Yey!

Ann

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #140 on: December 30, 2015, 03:13:09 AM »
Happy to hear that!

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #141 on: December 30, 2015, 10:35:53 AM »
UPDATE
===========

the articles for the defense came through. No more than 30 days to the defense. Yey!

Progress!

Apples

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #142 on: December 30, 2015, 12:54:39 PM »
Whybe, does you wife actually believe she can have a better relationship with her mom/parents?  Does she believe she is going to be able to establish boundaries, play the long game of a few times shutting down toxic conversations so that later on they can have a healthy relationship?  Does she really, deep down, want to go through the short term unfun things to get to hopefully greener pastures?  That might be the tact you take with her to help convince her to start establishing boundaries, not going over on her own, and shutting down the guilt tripping.  That is not nagging.  That's support of a spouse.  But if she isn't confident in her ability to turn things around, or doesn't think there will be greener pastures, then your "encouragement" of her will definitely feel like nagging.

Also, to the person who can't have real conversations because their spouse gets angry...I have been known to be that spouse on occasion, but usually only when I'm stressed or at a certain time of the month where I just can't handle it and I'm immediately defensive and lash out for no real reason.  It really helps when my husband frames our whole conversation as a "we" discussion, not you vs. me.  We need to figure out what we want to do about this money thing.  We need to figure out how we can visit your/my parents for the holidays.  We need to to laundry - I can't get to it tonight, can you?  We want to do x thing, do you want to sit down and do that?  However, you sound like you definitely need some counseling to really set a foundation you guys can use to communicate.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #143 on: January 30, 2016, 12:11:56 AM »
UPDATE
========
DW WENT THROUGH THE FINAL STAGE OF THESIS! woohoo!
Baby not here yet, we are at 39th week. She was so underwhelmed by the whole thing, I was trying to root for her and encourage her, all she's feeling right now is the discomfort and pains of carrying the child.  So now we wait for the results and getting the diploma from the university. And we can move on to other things,  like having a child (!)

deborah

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #144 on: January 30, 2016, 01:57:13 AM »
Well Done!!!

Ann

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #145 on: January 30, 2016, 02:12:37 AM »
Wonderful!

TomTX

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #146 on: January 30, 2016, 05:31:18 AM »
Congratulations!

Miss Prim

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #147 on: January 30, 2016, 05:40:59 AM »
Yay!  So happy to hear this!

                                                                              Miss Prim

Dee

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #148 on: January 30, 2016, 06:22:10 AM »
That's wonderful! Thanks for updating us and congratulations to your wife!

Tabitha

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #149 on: January 30, 2016, 07:06:40 AM »
Congratulations. Hopefully with the elephant conquered the rest of what's in the room can be seen.