Post # 1
Every time I spend any amount of time near my FIL, I wish I lived in Germany or another part of the world where a 10+ flight is needed to get there. He is so sexist and he treats his dogs better than he treats my MIL. I get it, he’s older and yada, yada, yada. My grandpa is older than him and he helps around the house and is very respectful and loving to my grandma so age is never an excuse for sexism.
My FIL spilled something on the floor and my MIL was trying to figure out what it was and so my FIL tells her to shut up and just clean it up. DH and SIL told him how unbelievably rude and unnecessary that was and he thought it was funny. He is always putting women down saying that women should be waiting tables at restaurants instead of men and other outrageous things like that. He gets visibly annoyed when DH is doing what he deems to be a woman’s job such as doing dishes and cooking. I can ignore it, but I just can’t take the way that he humiliates my MIL in front of everybody. I know that my MIL is old fashioned and divorce is not even an option but I just feel for her. I just can’t stand the way that he refers to women, specially his wife. He has daughters too and I can’t believe he is setting this kind of example for his grandchildren. I just wish that I did not have to spend any time with him at all. We don’t have a bad relationship because I usually just stay mum but it’s only been 3 years and I don’t know how long I will be able to keep my mouth shut. DH disagrees with him but he says that he is his dad and he will not change him now and we can only ignore him. I hate to feel this way because I feel I despise him even more every time I spend any time with him :@
Post # 3
Ugh, that sucks. I think your husband is right, though.. what can really be done aside from limiting the time you spend with him? Or moving far away? Lol.
I would try to focus on his good qualities… he must have something, right??
Getting into a debate with him will likely get you nowhere and he may take it out on your MIL.
Don’t forget that your MIL is an adult too and unless he is somehow abusing her, she has willingly put up with this for many years.
Post # 4
@amoret11: My best advice is to just limit the amount of time you spend with him. Maybe go out for coffee with your MIL or SIL when you are visiting? Getting into debates/arguments is useless unfortunately and will only make you more angry.
I have some old world sexist distant relatives, and I haven’t seen them in years and prefer it that way. They were horrified that I wasn’t married off at age 22 and would probably freak if they saw me still single at 30. These are the types of relatives that would never ask a woman about her career, but have no issues asking her SO that they barely know about his (::Fume::) and then wondering why the woman is not getting excited over the babies at the place (not a fan of children). I have found that limiting contact is the best thing to do in these situations.
Post # 5
I wouldn’t let FIL speak to my DH that way. Not sure it’s your place to interfere in his marriage (but nice that your DH tries!) but for damn sure, I wouldn’t allow him to talk to me in that way.
Post # 6
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
I would not allow my daughter to spend any time at that man’s house and I would require that my FI be on the same page. I would also start limiting the time I spend at the FIL’s house to the bare minimum. If they don’t like it then the FIL needs to learn how to keep his mouth shut when you do visit. If he can’t behave, then I wouldn’t visit and as soon as he says something offensive, I would leave immediately. I did that to my FIL once when he said something offensive and since then, he has behaved much better when we visit.
If your FI doesn’t support you in this then you need to reconsider marrying him because to an extent you are marrying into that family and your children will have some contact and visitation with them.
Post # 7
@amoret11: i’d encourage my FI to say ‘dad, you saying x, y and z is completely unacceptable and innapropriate. how do you think that makes sisters a and b feel? you may not agree, and may not change, but i will be limiting my time here because of your disrespect to mom’.
i mean – you fi can’t stand up for his MOTHER? and you both sitting there biting your tongues is only encouraging his awful behaviour – i would straight up tell him that i don’t plan to waste my time off, birthdays, holidays etc with a man who thinks that i am less valuable or less worth respect than a man. period.
so WHAT if your fil doesn’t change – at least your poor MIL will know that someone cares about her, good grief, she has an asshat for a husband and watches as her family tacitly agrees with him. imagine how alone she must feel!
Post # 8
@peonyinlove: Everyone has told him something along those lines at some point and they definitely call him up on it when they’re there. All siblings have given my MIL “asylum” when she gets too fed up but she only stays away for a week or two, Then he would ask her to come back home because he cannot cook or do any chores if his life depended on it. Then my MIL goes back, he’s nice to her for about two minutes and then the cycle starts over. I see how she feels like running away but for her, marriage is forever. DH does not want to threaten him to cut all ties if he continues because, well, he is his dad. I see how frustrated he gets though.
Post # 9
@amoret11: That sounds like a quasi-, if not full on, abusive relationship.
I’m a hardcore feminist. I would say something. I would say A LOT. But maybe you have to start small. No one gets to be mistreated because of biological identity. He’s your FIL? She’s your MIL. Now, she’s obviously brainwashed, so you can’t be too pushy or she’ll defend him/deflect the blame. But next time she spills something, you get on the floor and you tell FI to get on the floor and you clean it for her. Offer her support, support, support. Let her vent, do chores for her, help her with her “female” duties, and I’ll bet she’ll start to open up to you and get stronger. Demonstrate how an egalitarian couple interacts. I bet she’ll be very proud of her son and it will show her the shit she is putting up with. Hopefully she still has time to stop being a servant.
“He has daughters too and I can’t believe he is setting this kind of example for his grandchildren.” Because he doesn’t like/respect women. He would obviously be comfortable with a man treating your future daughter the way he treats your fiance’s mother.
FIL is his father, fine. But this is a man who draws strength from feeling “better” than women (and apparently, POC?) Your FI has more of a duty to his mistreated mother than he does to his father. And if not passively allowing his mother to be treated like shit alienates his dad, so be it.
Post # 10
@amoret11: The whole “FIL can’t do chores to save his life” is BULLSHIT (not yelling at you though haha). Everyone can boil fucking water and turn on a washing machine. She needs to stay away a hell of a lot longer than a couple weeks. She needs to stay away for several MONTHS and do whatever the hell she wants to do. She is a grandmother. She has the right to be fully free and worshipped in her home. Make him take care of himself for a few months and gain a little appreciation for what she does for him.
And as for your future children (if you have any), start the feminism convos early (especially with boys). If you feel compelled to visit your ILs and they still have this dynamic, use their dynamic to show your children how NOT to treat their spouse.
Post # 11
@Syzygy88: I’ve done that in the past. When my MIL is not around, I tell my FIL that I never let guest at my house do dishes so I don’t have to do dishes when I’m a guest, he gets it and if no one touches the dishes he’ll do it himself. However, when my MIL is around, he’ll yell at her until she does it even if someoene else is doing it for her.
He won’t listen to me because to him, I’m another worthless woman. He listens to his sons though, that’s why I urge my DH to just give him an ultimatum. Stop talking to my mom like that or I’ll stop speaking to you. He’s the opposite of his dad because he grew up despising how his dad treated his mom. But then mom jumps on to dad’s defense so it’s a never ending story.
Post # 12
@amoret11: Man, I am sorry to hear that. Hopefully the cycle at least breaks with his kids. We have so much further to go but maybe one day men like FIL will be extinct and men like ours will be the standard!