Author Topic: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer  (Read 53179 times)

iris lily

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #150 on: January 30, 2016, 08:19:58 AM »
OP, this is great news indeed. Now you can move on to adulting, which means parenting your incoming infant and setting boundaries for MIL.

Cookie78

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #151 on: January 30, 2016, 11:10:17 AM »
Awesome!!

LeRainDrop

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #152 on: January 30, 2016, 11:33:43 AM »
What a fantastic update!  Congrats to you and your wife for getting through that, and best wishes for your new baby!

lhamo

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #153 on: January 30, 2016, 07:11:01 PM »
Congratulations!  Glad she managed to get through the academic stuff before the baby came.  Hope the delivery goes smoothly and that you all have a great time bonding soon.

Josiecat

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #154 on: January 30, 2016, 07:20:55 PM »
So happy for your wife!

DebtFreeBy25

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #155 on: January 30, 2016, 07:58:05 PM »
Congrats! Hopefully this good news, degree and new baby, will put MIL in the right frame of mind to see you both as capable adults.

I'd recommend that you start setting appropriate boundaries now. Some overly-involved parents like to tell their children how they should be raising their grandchildren. Don't let this happen to you. Standing your ground early and often will go a long way towards limiting the influence of your MIL.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #156 on: January 30, 2016, 11:07:28 PM »
DW still hasn't told MIL about this.

Psychstache

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #157 on: January 31, 2016, 08:03:19 AM »
Congrats! Hopefully this good news, degree and new baby, will put MIL in the right frame of mind to see you both as capable adults.

I'd recommend that you start setting appropriate boundaries now. Some overly-involved parents like to tell their children how they should be raising their grandchildren. Don't let this happen to you. Standing your ground early and often will go a long way towards limiting the influence of your MIL.
I hope so too, but, in my experience with Russian Jewish grandmothers, she will simple find something new about them to be disappointed in. Probably related to how they are raising the child.

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iris lily

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #158 on: January 31, 2016, 09:30:37 AM »
DW still hasn't told MIL about this.
Dont tell her until the thing is done and signed off and she's got the diploma.

Physicsteacher

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #159 on: January 31, 2016, 10:08:09 AM »
Great news! I am happy for both of you.

former player

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #160 on: January 31, 2016, 10:33:47 AM »
DW still hasn't told MIL about this.
Dont tell her until the thing is done and signed off and she's got the diploma.
Agreed.  It would also be good if when she does so your wife sends a formal but heartfelt letter saying thank you for the support which enabled her to get it.  As well as being an excellent display of good manners, it would help to draw a line under the whole episode.

elaine amj

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #161 on: February 01, 2016, 01:08:28 PM »
Awesome news :)

BFGirl

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #162 on: February 01, 2016, 01:49:31 PM »
Congratulations!!

Just try to make sure that if the MIL starts trying to interfere too much with your new family that you and your wife discuss setting some boundaries with the in-laws.  My ex wouldn't stand up to his parents and over time it caused a lot of problems in our relationship.  I always felt like he chose placating them over me, and whether right or wrong, I felt like I took second place to their wishes.  Ultimately, their passing eased that particular strain, but it was one of the things that adversely impacted our marriage.  Just my 2 cents.

Best of luck!

Daleth

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #163 on: February 04, 2016, 08:47:38 AM »
Fantastic. Yay to your wife, and best of luck with childbirth and the transition to parenthood!

Exflyboy

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #164 on: February 04, 2016, 10:27:40 AM »
Congratulations!!

Just try to make sure that if the MIL starts trying to interfere too much with your new family that you and your wife discuss setting some boundaries with the in-laws.  My ex wouldn't stand up to his parents and over time it caused a lot of problems in our relationship.  I always felt like he chose placating them over me, and whether right or wrong, I felt like I took second place to their wishes.  Ultimately, their passing eased that particular strain, but it was one of the things that adversely impacted our marriage.  Just my 2 cents.

Best of luck!

Agreed my Wife's mother is unbelievably abusive.. I had to bring the hammer down until they learned to behave. Registering her new car at my house to commit sales tax fraud (without telling me) was the last straw.

Naturally i turned her into the DMV.. That got her attention..:)

My Wife's wellbeing is Job #1 as far as I am concerned.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #165 on: February 24, 2016, 02:02:05 AM »
So,
Mini whybe has arrived! DW had our baby boy Saturday 13.2. Both went through the ordeal well and we ahad been adjusting to the new situation since. I will go back to work Friday.
Amazingly shenanigans are still up on DW's side of the family, although we can't be 100% sure... Someone clipped his nails right under our noses. And MIL is our immediate suspect. Here goes:

He was born with longer than average nails and a full head of hair. for his cousin (SIL's daughter) who was born 5 months ago, MIL clipped the nails at the hospital before checking out. We were against the idea, as were the medical staff at the hospital, recommending waiting until 1 month old. MIL expressed her discontent with his nails a few times but we told her we won't agree to it.

At the  baby's circumcision ceremony, last saturday, he was put under local anaesthesia (we spent on having a doctor perform the circumcision and not a traditional /mohel/), and was pretty happy during the whole thing. Everyone was happy and many people held him while we were taking care of things like payment and such. Later that night, DW notices he isn't scratching her so much during feeding and looked. We were shocked to see that all his nails in is hands have been cut short... We immediately asked all of the 30 people who attended if anyone saw anything. Of course no one confessed, but we have our suspicions. The only pair of baby nail clippers in the house is in my backpack, and not in plain sight. The only person with enough beef and chutzpah to do this is MIL.but why does she think it's OK to do that without telling? Then bluntly lying about it? We feel we can't trust MIL to stay alone with baby now. Nor with my mother. Vigilance is key.

Irishtache

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #166 on: February 24, 2016, 03:23:26 AM »
Congratulations on the new arrival. Hope mother and baby continue to be well. That was quite an invasive action by whoever clipped the baby's nails. I suppose she sees it as  grooming issue. Mothers (or MILs) huh?

I have to admit, though, that I squirmed more at the idea of the baby having his schmeckle clipped! Ouch.

former player

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #167 on: February 24, 2016, 03:55:52 AM »
Congratulations on your son, and on having a doctor perform his circumcision under anaesthetic.

Someone cutting your baby's nails when doctors had advised against it is intolerable.  Accusing MIL, or anyone else in particular, is unlikely to help.  You might think of sending a "more in sorrow than in anger" missive to everyone who might expect to be left alone with the baby saying something along the lines of -

"Here is the latest picture of our newborn son.  We were delighted you could come to the ceremony and celebrate him with us.  Unfortunately, while he was out of our hands someone cut his fingernails and toenails.  We had specifically asked his doctor about this, and were advised that for good medical reasons his nails should not be cut until he was at least a month old.   Because this procedure was carried out on our son without our knowledge and against medical advice by someone who held him at the ceremony, we have very sadly come to the conclusion that we will not be allowing unsupervised access to our son for the foreseeable future.  We know this will make some of you sad, but we are sure that you will understand that our son's welfare comes first."

iris lily

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #168 on: February 24, 2016, 05:37:56 AM »
Nailgate. That's crazy. I can't imagine a set of baby nails that is truly bothersome. But I am not around babies, so maybe I don't know. I also can't see how anyone could cut the nails while passing him around during a ceremony.

But anyway OP, your MIL'S action is inexcusable.

little_brown_dog

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #169 on: February 24, 2016, 05:57:59 AM »
There isn't much you can do except reiterate that you don't want the nails clipped. But honestly, I think revoking access to the baby over it is just as crazy and controlling as the person who did the unauthorized clipping. It isn't right to go against a parent's wishes for their child, but parents also need to pick their battles or else it is easy to blow something way out of proportion. A little bit of humor might also help you put this in perspective - for example, you just chose to cut skin off of his PENIS under general anesthesia...surely that was far more traumatic, medically risky, and life altering than one episode of unauthorized nail clipping. Sometimes seeing the irony in our own choices can make us more forgiving of others who piss us off.

As for the mystery clipping - you don't need clippers to trim a baby's nails. It's really easy to simply bite them off, and many parents prefer this method because they are too nervous using files and clippers on those tiny fingers. So it's possible the nails weren't actually clipped, but removed in another way.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2016, 10:32:00 AM by little_brown_dog »

Psychstache

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #170 on: February 24, 2016, 08:26:27 PM »
There isn't much you can do except reiterate that you don't want the nails clipped. But honestly, I think revoking access to the baby over it is just as crazy and controlling as the person who did the unauthorized clipping. It isn't right to go against a parent's wishes for their child, but parents also need to pick their battles or else it is easy to blow something way out of proportion. A little bit of humor might also help you put this in perspective - for example, you just chose to cut skin off of his PENIS under general anesthesia...surely that was far more traumatic, medically risky, and life altering than one episode of unauthorized nail clipping. Sometimes seeing the irony in our own choices can make us more forgiving of others who piss us off.

As for the mystery clipping - you don't need clippers to trim a baby's nails. It's really easy to simply bite them off, and many parents prefer this method because they are too nervous using files and clippers on those tiny fingers. So it's possible the nails weren't actually clipped, but removed in another way.

The issue isn't the particular action taken, it is the complete disregard for the parent's directly stated wishes. If I tell someone not to do something with my child, and they then go and do that exact thing, I have zero qualms about cutting them off.

former player

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #171 on: February 25, 2016, 02:05:23 AM »
There isn't much you can do except reiterate that you don't want the nails clipped. But honestly, I think revoking access to the baby over it is just as crazy and controlling as the person who did the unauthorized clipping. It isn't right to go against a parent's wishes for their child, but parents also need to pick their battles or else it is easy to blow something way out of proportion. A little bit of humor might also help you put this in perspective - for example, you just chose to cut skin off of his PENIS under general anesthesia...surely that was far more traumatic, medically risky, and life altering than one episode of unauthorized nail clipping. Sometimes seeing the irony in our own choices can make us more forgiving of others who piss us off.

As for the mystery clipping - you don't need clippers to trim a baby's nails. It's really easy to simply bite them off, and many parents prefer this method because they are too nervous using files and clippers on those tiny fingers. So it's possible the nails weren't actually clipped, but removed in another way.
Not much point saying "we don't want his nails clipped" after it has been done, is there?

It is not about being "crazy and controlling", it's about establishing and enforcing appropriate boundaries.  Which has been a serious problem in this relationship for a significant period of time, is ongoing, is unresolved and will cause difficulties throughout the whole upbringing of the child unless sorted.

Whatever your views on circumcision, describing a fundamental religious and cultural practice performed under anaesthetic by a medical doctor, on a jewish boy born in Israel, as "traumatic, medically risky and life-altering" is inaccurate.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #172 on: February 25, 2016, 08:51:12 AM »
Congratulations on your son. New babies are hard and it may be hard to enforce the "no unsupervised access to our son" plan. Setting boundaries is important, but setting a boundary you then don't enforce would make things worse. Consider that before acting.

partgypsy

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #173 on: February 25, 2016, 11:45:47 AM »
I absolutely agree that whoever cut the baby's nails without the parents' permission is in the wrong. However I do not understand why the doctor said that you had to wait for a month to trim them.  In fact with my oldest they cut her nails at the hospital before discharge because they were on the long side. They can also accidently scratch themselves with long nails.


Sibley

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #174 on: February 25, 2016, 08:00:16 PM »
OP, check out Captain Awkward's blog (in your copious spare time!).  She's got some very good advice and scripts for how to set and enforce boundaries.

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #175 on: February 28, 2016, 01:19:27 AM »
Thanks all for the support. Still in the getting to grips stage of the whole parenting thing. We are trying not to overreact on this whole thing. I am aware of captain Awkward, and personally think some of the stuff she writes is gold. but again, DW isn't in the place where she thinks resistance is going to bear fruit since she's automatically playing out a defeated script in her head, I.e. "I'd love to stand up to my mother, but to whatever I say she will say x y z and that will be the end of it. Just can't win." It's her internal struggle here first of all. Should I be encouraging her down this path or should I just let her be? It's a tough one.

BTDretire

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #176 on: February 28, 2016, 07:25:09 AM »


ETA: OMG... you just got married this year, and you are now saying in your latest post that you hope she's knocked up ASAP too. You both should just admit that she has no intention of completing the degree. And basically you both need to slow the hell down and get a handle on being married adults too - she can't have a decent relationship with her mother, and can't even stand up for herself, and popping out a kid right this minute isn't going to help matters. You think things are bad now with the wife basically acting like a child putting her fingers in her ears and ignoring the problems with her parents? Just wait until you add kids to mix... your life will SUCK and you and your wife will have so many fights over the inlaws' nagging and demands, and the wife will just cave each time since that's what she's always done. Good luck with that trainwreck.

Slow the hell down, figure out what both of you want, and then be honest with yourselves and her parents and set some damned boundaries. She needs to do this: as in "mom, I'm not completing that degree, so stop talking about it." and then enforce the boundaries NOW.

+1 on the above.
Finish the thesis, but it won't change MIL.
She will be a thorn, until your DW stands up to her
and puts an end to it.  MIL needs to know that there is a line, and when she crosses it,
DW will say mom, that crossed the line, I'm hanging up now, call me in a week. Bye.
 You wrote a pretty good description of the emotional upset MIL is causing, help your DW
write a letter about the upset mom is causing in her life and set some boundaries.

iris lily

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #177 on: February 28, 2016, 08:15:37 AM »
Thanks all for the support. Still in the getting to grips stage of the whole parenting thing. We are trying not to overreact on this whole thing. I am aware of captain Awkward, and personally think some of the stuff she writes is gold. but again, DW isn't in the place where she thinks resistance is going to bear fruit since she's automatically playing out a defeated script in her head, I.e. "I'd love to stand up to my mother, but to whatever I say she will say x y z and that will be the end of it. Just can't win." It's her internal struggle here first of all. Should I be encouraging her down this path or should I just let her be? It's a tough one.

Ok you DID ask, above.

Its not about "winning" as in your wife changes the mind of her mother.

Its about two adults having different opinions and retaining those different opinions, yet maintaining a relationship. Thats what boundaries are for.

Talk to your wife about honoring her mother by allowing mom to think what she thinks, wish what she wishes, but NOT allowing action that crosses your defined boundaries.

Boundaries are about actions, not thoughts. When mom says X (an action) you two do X. When mom shows up,at your house uninvited (an action) you two do X.

Apples

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #178 on: March 02, 2016, 08:15:01 AM »
Read a book on boundary setting.  There's a famous person in the money world who recommends the book "Boundaries" by Dr. Henry Cloud.  I've not read it, but I know people who have who found it really helpful.  I've read things similar to it (but on the internet) that have helped me figure out how to set boundaries.  I have a MIL that is passive aggressive and a guilt tripper.  My DH had to learn how to actively set boundaries to let her know when a line was crossed, but also that there will still be contact (hey, that's not ok so I'm going to hang up now, but I'll call you again next Sunday.  If you text me a lot between now and then I probably won't call --- b/c she'll send terrible long texts to try to get him to call her on a Tuesday at 7 am and Thursday at 10 pm-really inconvenient times).  It took DH a long time to see there was a whole grey area between the black of "mom's mad at me and everything is terrible b/c she makes it so" and white of "I do and let her do whatever she wants".  Setting a boundary in the first place takes courage, and not letting the "consequences" the person does b/c of the boundary takes some fortitude.  But it's so worth it!

Lock your doors to prevent random stopovers.  My friends had trouble with this, and eventually locked their doors and didn't answer.  "must have been busy upstairs and not heard the knock, we weren't expecting anyone".  Of course, people told them the other option was when they see the parents pull in the driveway, get naked and have sex (or look like you're having sex) on the couch/floor/table so that if parents open the door, they see you.  That'll stop them from "just stopping over"!  Of course your wife recently gave birth, so this probably isn't an option right now :p

whybe

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #179 on: March 05, 2016, 01:02:33 PM »
Nice... :-)

I will look into the book you mentioned. We need to strategize on the boundaries thing.

elaine amj

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Re: advice needed - wife's family putting us through ringer
« Reply #180 on: March 05, 2016, 02:52:02 PM »
Spend some time with each other discussing which battles you want to fight and what boundaries you want to set. My in-laws are a handful, and fully believe in their right to interfere in any and all matters, particularly as it relates to our children.

What helped me (my kids are in their teens now and we all survived with our relationships intact):

- My DH made it clear that he would support me in anything. I rarely argued with them - he fought all "battles".

- My DH eventually realizing that sometimes wives just need to grumble and complain - he didn't need to go yell at them or anything (my brother is still learning this one lol).

- I looked at them in love, accepting them with all their faults. They generally had the very best of intentions, even when those intentions were super annoying.

- I took a stand with my key issues, and let the rest go. Although there were some occasions where even if I took a firm stand, they would still cross the boundaries. When DD was a toddler, my MIL kept insisting on cutting her bangs. We would come home to find her bangs cut. No matter what we did, she just wouldn't stop. That was her battle that she was willing to fight me about *sigh*. The only thing that worked was for me to make sure I always took my DD for regular haircuts.

- we did what we could to give all of us some space. We lived the first couple of years with my inlaws. Eventually, I couldn't handle it and we moved out. Eventually my MIL moved in with us due to health issues but it was easier since it was our house.

We still had issues through the years, but it gradually declined. I am glad I didn't cut her out of our lives. She has received tremendous joy out of our kids and watching them grow...and I could never do something like that to a family member anyway. She did raise my super awesome DH :)

I know my way won't work for everyone. But family is super important to me and I was able to be as patient with them as possible. I won't say I was the best DIL - I have spent plenty of time avoiding them and keeping my distance (that helped my sanity though lol!.