(Closed) FMIL acts like I don't exist/doesn't like me?

posted 6 years ago in Family
Post # 2
165 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I’m sorry to hear that you’re being judged unfairly by his mother. She is obviously an insecure and unkind woman. However, your situation kind of sounds great to me. She lives far away, she wants nothing to do with you, and your boyfriend wants very little to do with her at all. My future mother in law has literally been stalking me for years. Example: I have to keep my curtains shut at all times because she will come up to my window and stare at me as I cook dinner, etc. She is insecure and controlling too. To make herself feel needed, she uses her “love for me” as an excuse to take over my life. I would prefer your situation. His dad and step mom are great, and you don’t really need to deal with his mom. Just because she’s visiting doesn’t mean you need to be there. You do not have to sit around and be abused just because you love your boyfriend. He seems to understand that she’s a terrible person so I’m sure he won’t put up too much of a fight when you tell him you won’t be around for her visits. Let her have her adult son “all to herself” (pathetic). After you’re married you will have holidays as husband and wife. He can visit her the day after Christmas or something. Bee, once you realize you don’t HAVE to be mistreated you will feel so free. I haven’t spoken to Future Mother-In-Law in almost three months. My anxiety is at its lowest ever. My relationship with Fiance is better. I’m really living! Yes, there are times we will have to see our in laws but visits should be extremely infrequent and short. Spending time together is a privilege. If she misbehaves, she loses her privilege. Just think of her as an overgrown child, which she is, and it will be easier to set boundaries. Good luck and keep us updated πŸ™‚

Post # 3
1099 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

View original reply
penguinally:  First off, welcome to the Bee! I hope you’ll have lots of fun reading through these boards and enjoying the more fun parts of wedding planning when the time comes…

In the meantime, I’m really sorry to hear about your situation. I can understand how hurtful it must be and these things can take a large emotional toll. 

At the end of the day, we have no control over what other people do or think. We can only make our own decisions and stand tall with confidence in the way we handle ourselves and treat other people. You could try discussing things directly with your Future Mother-In-Law, but I highly highly doubt that this would be at all constructive, and will more than likely just cause you more grief and give her more ammunition. If I were you, I would kill her with kindness. I wouldn’t go out of my way for her, but I’d say ‘Hello’ and ‘See you soon’ in my friendliest voice with my biggest smile everytime I saw her. I’d laugh at all her jokes and compliment her cooking. Then, I’d go home, hug my partner, and get a good night’s sleep knowing any complaints she tried to make to others would be extremely petty and only reflect poorly on her. 

I think it’s also important that your partner doesn’t put up with her speaking poorly about you, no matter the context. Next time she starts having a go, he needs to tell her that he has no interest in that conversation and shut it down. If he has to hang up on her or walk away, so be it. The better he keeps his cool, the more powerful a message it will send. She will get no enjoyment from not being able to rattle either of you.

Remember to focus on the positives. You have a great relationship with the rest of the family and lots to look forward to. Don’t let her unpleasantness dampen your happiness – that part you can control! Afterall, what does the opinion of a woman who is clearly this petty really count for anyway?

Best of luck!

Post # 4
128 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

Kill her with kindness – it really does work. It drives my Future Mother-In-Law up the wall because if she has anything to complain about everyone just looks at her like ‘eh…what?’

It’s never nice to have someone blatantly have an issue with you but it sounds like the rest of his family love you to bits and that’s the bit to try and focus on.

Post # 6
2979 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

I hate to break it to you, but it probably won’t get better. She is just one of those people. Just be polite. Your BF sounds awesome, and obviously sticks up for you, and his Dads family sounds nice too. I think 1 bad apple shouldn’t ruin the bunch, and OVERALL sounds like a good situation to be marrying into. Luckily she lives far away haha.

Post # 8
1157 posts
Bumble bee

Most people would say to kill her with kindness, but that doesn’t seem to be working in your case. I would just let it go and not even bother. Don’t antagonize her, but don’t go out of your way to talk to her or be involved in her life. If you have a chance to be nice to her in front of people, do it, because it will just make her look like a nutcase whenever she talks shit.

Post # 9
1708 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

View original reply
penguinally:  you are not alone! Lots of mothers have trouble letting go of their “little” boys. My Mother-In-Law was certainly not thrilled when my now-husband and I moved in together (mind you, he was 29 years old at the time), acted super stand-offish when we first met, and made little snippy remarks towards me. She wanted him all to herself and my presense bothered/annoyed her. I just continued to be civil and polite, and ignored her little barbs (I’d just vent endlessly to my friends). Ultimately, my husband was always on my side, and that’s what mattered to me. Now that we are married and she realizes I’m not going anywhere, she’s trying to be all loving, but I know what she is like underneath and will always be civil and friendly, but guarded and distant. 

Just remember this is not about you – it’s about her insecurity about her relationship with her son. Stay civil and keep your eyes on the prize – your wonderful man. πŸ™‚

Post # 12
3170 posts
Sugar bee

Maybe she mistakes your shyness for standoffishness and is responding to what she perceives as your lack of friendliness by putting up a wall. As PPs suggested, killing her with kindness may just work.

I’m a naturally reserved person, and I’ve had friends tell me that when they first met me, they thought I didn’t like them or were intimidated by me or both. I definitely liked them and I’m far from an intimidating person once you talk to me, but it goes to show how people can misinterpret certain personality traits. 

Post # 13
1202 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

my Mother-In-Law is a peach… I just try to minimize contact with her whenever possible. Whenever we go to visit for long periods of time, I make sure a friend, my mom, etc., can listen to me vent via text so I don’t lose it! Actually, over Christmas this year I created a running thread and vented to the Bees about MILs ridiculous behavior daily.

bottom line is you’re not going to change her, and she’s probably going to continue to act the way she is currently acting. All you can change is your reaction to it. I finally just had to throw my hands up. She is who she is. No sense in me making myself physically ill or crying about it. Wasted too much energy on that in the forest four years!

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