Post # 16
This. Having a Mother-In-Law as a coworker is way too close for comfort.
I’m glad that you and your husband are in counseling. It sounds like he has some growing up to do and maybe he’s too attached to his mother. While I agree that sending your Mother-In-Law that text was not helpful, I do have sympathy for how angry and betrayed you must have felt. This is what happens when we bottle up our emotions.
Bringing up such a sensitive family issue at work would probably worsen the situation. If you want to talk to your Mother-In-Law about this problem, it’s probably best to do so in person and make the first move towards ending the argument.
Post # 17
Your Mother-In-Law should be apologizing to you. So should your Darling Husband. Apparently he came by his immaturity the honest way – from his parents.
Hopefully your counselor will help you and your Darling Husband set appropriate boundaries and he can overcome his desire for petty revenge, which ironically is really hurting his marriage as well as hurting you, so rather stupid on his part.
I wouldnt say anything else to her about this, you said your piece and she ignored it except to use against you – so she has responded in aggression, albeit passive aggression, which seems to be the family speciality. Be distant but civil at work, don’t give her any more power over your feelings or your marriage (more than she already has).
Post # 18
lmnop1984: fair enough on waiting until you have the baby to look for a new job!
Post # 19
My Darling Husband and I work with the family business and we agreed ages ago on not talking negatively about fights or anything else at work or with the family. We will tell of funny things the other has done (IE: Darling Husband putting his new socks in the laundry without taking them out of the package or thinking that I made chicken when I made pork, the dog knocking me over to attempt to ‘love on me’, etc) even if it’s a tad embarassing, but we will not out the other in any way that would hurt our relationship or busienss life. This is osmehting you obviously need to have a conversation about with Darling Husband and make it clear that his “telling” is not acceptable of a grown man.
Post # 20
Wow. No, just … no. Even with the baby coming I would be looking for a new job. If you don’t mind me asking, how far along are you? If you’re still early-on in your pregnancy, you may be able to find something else by the time baby comes, and not all jobs require that you be in them a year before qualifying for leave. It couldn’t hurt to at least look.
If that’s absolutely not an option – how about a transfer within your company? Is there a supervisor you could talk openly and honestly with, who might help you figure out a way to transfer you so that you don’t have to be in daily close contact with your MIL?
And of course, the counseling. What’s more worrysome that the “telling” on you, is that he does it to hurt you. That’s really sick behaviour. Beyond putting you in a terrible situation at work, it could genuinely hurt your career opportunities, thereby hurting your husband and future child/children.
Honestly, I would divorce someone who put my family in jeopardy on purpose, to get “revenge” on me. He sounds like a sick individual.
Post # 21
Thank you everyone for the suggestions! I would never bring this up at work. I pride myself on professionalism. I know it will be quite awkward tomorrow morning but I don’t believe anything I said was wrong. It was not the most helpful text ever but what’s done is done. The only thing it did possibly was add fuel to her fire when discussing me to her son.
Believe it or not, there haven’t been too many issues with Mother-In-Law working together until now. We had a few minor differences but this is the biggest rift. However, this whole situation has made me realize that as soon as I can, I must get a new job. I am pregnant (surprise!) and have to stay there until after the baby is born to qualify for FMLA. Getting a new job is the first thing on my list after that.
I really appreciate your responses. My biggest priority now is to work on my marriage. We will definitely keep going through counseling and I will be bringing this huge issue up then. Thanks bees!
Post # 22
lmnop1984: So sorry that you are in this complicated position! I would absolutely not put up with this sort of behavior. How immature and irresponsible of him! Especially since you work with your MIL! Was he always like this or did it start after you got married? Like other bees have said, I think all you can do is address it with him and call him out on it in counseling. If he isn’t willing to get his act together for you (and unborn baby!) then I would seriously consider leaving.
Post # 23
What are your agreements in regards to disclosing issues in a relationship. I’m not going to lie, I don’t like the thought that you shouldn’t disclose issues to family; that’s how an abusive ex kept me from getting support and help to make me realize that he was abusive. Additionally, if you can rant talk to your parents about relationship issues its fair game for him to do the same.
The big red flag though is why he’s doing this and it’s not to seek advice or support – he seems to do this to make you look bad which is not okay in any way shape or form. As for the Mother-In-Law, don’t take it out on her she is not the cause of this – it’s your husband. It’s easy to lash at her because you have no vested interest in her as opposed to your husband.
youre going to counceling which is great and I think your next session should centre in that: establishing agreements and boundaries as to what you can disclose to family. Be prepared though that the attitude you are facing is not easy to change and he will have to be fully engaged in changing this behaviour.
Post # 24
Soon2bmrs1: I can’t transfer as I’m in a specialized department based on my education and licensure. I’m currently 9 weeks pregnant so not far along. I’m really not too familiar with other options besides FMLA which does require employment for 1 year. I can research other options but I don’t know what’s out there in terms of leave for women who don’t qualify for FMLA. Divorce was definitely an option for more than just this issue but I want to give counseling a chance first.
SeeingSunshine: He did not engage in this type of behavior until just a couple months ago. Our first fight in which this happened actually started because of something she said to him about me and he told me he talked all about me and my “issues” to her and she agreed with him. This has since become a pattern in our relationship. This fight on Saturday was about chores.
Ettalie: I agree. I do believe family should know about serious issues. I vent to friends sometimes about non serious issues like he snores or he left the toilet seat up and I fell in. Heck im venting to strangers on the internet now! But I work with his mother and he’s doing it in a sick sadistic way. It’s causing problems professionally. I don’t want to take it out on Mother-In-Law and I regret sending her that text. But I believe she should tell her son she doesn’t want to be involved. However that will NEVER happen. He’s the only boy in a large family of girls and is treated like the little prince. She wants him to talk to her so she can make him feel better by making me look bad. It’s sick!
Post # 25
lmnop1984: Honestly I’m not an expert so probably won’t be much help, but my company doesn’t qualify for FMLA leave but we do have short and long term disability that we can use for maternity leave, and (in my case) I have the option of “purchasing additional time” via supplemental insurance (it was all explained to me when I started my job, but since I haven’t had a child and haven’t needed to use it, the details are fuzzy – sorry). I’m going to guess that it may also depend on what state you’re in, and if there are any state requirements around PTO that you might be able to take advantage of.
It’s a shitty situation, to feel like you’re stuck at a toxic job because of your pregnancy and maternity leave needs. This is a prime example of how the US trails behind other countries when it comes to parental leave (both for men and women). I won’t get onto a soap box about it, but stories like yours make me feel really sad.
Is there a supervisor you could talk to about limiting your contact with your Mother-In-Law, at the very least? Someone to whom you can openly explain the situation, and who might be able to run interference? If your company has an HR department, I would discreetly make them aware of what’s going on. I’m worried that if things get ugly between you and your husband, your Mother-In-Law may try to sabotage you at work. Having someone in the company aware of the dynamic may help protect you if she starts spreading rumors, accusing you of things, lying about you, or in some way trying to end your career.
Post # 26
Soon2bmrs1: yup this country is messed up. I’m right there with you on the soapbox! We need to get with the rest of the world.
I will think about speaking to my supervisor. I have never wanted my relationship with Mother-In-Law to be an issue in the workplace so I’ve always completely downplayed our relationship although everyone knows of course. It’s not a secret! It might be something I’d consider.
Post # 27
I see this as a husband issue much more than a Mother-In-Law issue. The fact that he’s deliberately spilling to her to “punish” you by making things awkward at work is cruel, manipulative, and disrespectful. If he can’t respect your wishes to leave his mother out of it, then that is a major road block. I hope that your counselor can support you on this. I wouldn’t even worry about your MIL’s reaction right now, it’s almost beside the point. Your husband is ultimately just using her to hurt you.
Post # 28
peridot456: I totally agree that the OP has* a husband issue rather than a Mother-In-Law issue (seriously – he’s being CRUEL and personally I would divorce the guy). However; I do think she needs to protect herself if she thinks, even for a second, that her Mother-In-Law may do something to harm her career if things between her and her husband go south.
The last thing she needs right now is to get fired because the Mother-In-Law does something to hurt her career while she’s going through all this with her husband.
I totally second the counseling (at a minimum), but I wouldn’t ignore MIL’s reaction.