Post # 1
I have a very sweet Mother-In-Law and in many ways we get along very well. However, I find myself feeling sensitive when she gives me opinions and suggestions on how to run my home. I just want some space to figure out what works without anyone being pushy or interfering. I usually smile and nod and say thank you, I’ll think about that, but most of the time I prefer not to take her advice. Part of this is because I don’t want to feel dominated by her opinions or make her feel that she can control me or remote control our home. I know she doesn’t see it that way — she sees it as just being helpful and feels that b/c she has years of experience as a married woman that her opinion should be heard. Still, sometimes I just want to figure things out on my own. A problem is when my husband hears his mother make a suggestion, he almost always wants to do the thing she suggested, even if I’m against it. If I resist it, he’ll say, “you’re resisting because my mother suggested that, aren’t you?” and then it becomes a source of tension.
The latest thing is that my husband doesn’t want to use our clothes dryer b/c it uses tons of energy and is expensive to run. I’m sure I’m a spoiled American, but this is the first time in my life I have not had a dryer so the length of time it takes to do laundry has taken some getting used to. I’ve found that it takes things 2-3 days to dry in-doors on a metal drying rack, which is just too long. We have been looking into a drying rack that is heated, which will make clothes dry much quicker. His mother learned of this in a conversation with my husband, and suggested we instead use the small cupboard that contains our boiler to dry our clothes. She thinks that we should run string/wire across the cupboard and remove the shelves and since it is always warm b/c of the boiler, just dry things by hanging them in the cupboard. In my opinion this is a horrible idea b/c it will cause me to lose an entire cupboard and our most convenient storage space. My husband thinks this is a great idea b/c it will save us the 5p per hour that the heated drying rack would have cost. (My husband hates to waste money, which is something I admire about him– but sometimes he carries analyses so far that he is no longer practical about it.) He can’t believe I’m not on board with the idea and that I don’t care more about saving energy and money. As the person who does the laundry, I feel that the 5p per hour used by the drying rack is money well spent, and I don’t want to lose an entire cupboard to become a “drying cupboard” with strings running across it, as we don’t have much in-house storage space.
This boiler cupboard issue is just one of many issues with my Mother-In-Law and suggestions. I wish my own family were closer to help buffer the situation and help my DH see what is is like to have in-laws meddle, or offer suggestions to him, but that is no the case.
How have some of you been able to handle ongoing suggestions?
Post # 3
Mhm, when Mother-In-Law gives me any suggestions that I don’t agree with or don’t like, I just tell her straight out, but in a polite way of course. There is no need for being snarky or rude about it, I just brush it off and explain why and there is nothing more to it.
We’ve had soem suggestions towards the wedding, and she has backed down which is really nice of her when we tell her what we want. In that way it’s really great she is understanding.
Post # 4
@Mithralia: Thanks — and yes, I do this, too. I often thank her and then explain why I’ve done what I’ve done. The issue for me is that she offers so many suggestions that it’s exhausting . . . . after a while, instead of giving her 10 “no”s in a row, I just say, “I’ll think about that” and try to change the topic. Then she follows up. I’m just trying to get a feel for our relationship. she is nice, but really, really pushy — even though she’s cheerful about it. . . . I wish she would just take a little break from telling me what I should do and just get to know me a bit and support what i am doing.
Post # 5
My Mother-In-Law gives “suggestions” every five minutes. Luckily, she’s not here that often and we don’t have to listen to her. Unfortunately, if you don’t agree with her or do things the way she does them, then you’re wrong. It causes lots of tension and some arguments. We’ll usually just say we’ll think about it and leave it at that. DH has told her to stop, but she has a very controlling personality and I don’t think she can help herself.
Post # 6
commenting to save this thread.
Post # 7
Just saw your PM, I’ll write you there okay? 😀
Post # 8
Ok if my Mother-In-Law suggested the things in the OP, i would have told her and her son to pound sand… or given him the wet clothes to hang up in the cupboard.
My Mother-In-Law listens to me when I talk and I kind of bounce things off her, she doesn’t ever tell me how to do things and she knows I have no problem telling her to back off. I haven’t ever had to, but I didn’t marry into a stupid family. I think you need to have a chat with your hubs.
Post # 9
My Future Mother-In-Law always says “If thats what you want to do” it drives my Fiance up the wall when she says that because he always feels like she is being critical without just openly disagreeing. His mom is really very sweet though.
Post # 10
I’d be glad if my Mother-In-Law ever suggested anything. That might mean, to me, that she actually cared about anything. But, she doesn’t. In fact, I never hear from her at all. And she only lives 5 minutes away AND we’re pregnant. Lol – can you tell I’m a bit touchy about it? haha
HOWEVER, that being said, I gotta say that I think a boiler cupboard is the strangest suggestion I’ve heard in a long time. I would talk to DH about it.
Post # 11
Honestly, that sounds like a fire hazard to me! I would not do it just for that reason alone.
Post # 13
You’re going to have to sit down and talk with your hubbs and tell him how you feel and have him tell your Mother-In-Law to chill out because the longer you wait the more annoyed you’ll be and might cause you to blow up. (That happened with me)
Post # 14
I wish i had my beloved Mother-In-Law around to give me a ton of advises..we lost her in March and i miss her daily..she was 87 years old, a beautiful, charming, funny, social lady, always ready to tell a story of long ago an di was a eager listener. Learned a LOT from her.
Post # 15
Let your husband do his own laundry for a while. That should do the trick.
Post # 16
So maybe I’m just crazy but I don’t see anything wrong with a Mother-In-Law giving suggestions. They ARE older and one would hope they learned something in their years (not always the case though). You don’t want to make her nervous about saying things to you. Then she will feel like she has to tip toe around you.
I feel that its fine for her to make a suggestion and for you to say No. I assume she’s making a suggestion because someone is complaining about something right?
She shouldn’t be”following up” I mean that’s weird. She doesn’t need to know what you decided to do to your laundry or household stuff. That should stop I think. That puts weird pressure on you.
It sounds like you want to say no about some things just to establish yourself as a couple. Which isn’t the healthiest way to go about it. Unless your hubby just says that to get his way….??
The whole time I read your post it just sounded like you were just annoyed with your husband. I don’t think you owe your Mother-In-Law any explanition as to what you decide to do with your laundry. I think you explained your reasons for not wanting the cupboard solution just fine. And you should just tell him that and tell him that he is being silly. If he hits you with its just because of my mother (and hes just making that up) you can turn it around to say You just want to do this because your mother suggested it 😛 And when he gets upset that you said that you can tell him thats how he makes you feel- and you would rather just talk about the REAL REASON why you don’t want to do whatever.