Post # 1
Hello. I recently became married last week and MIL and I get along and treat each other well but there have been a few occassions where I can sense the tension and underming. The first time I met her she called me by then boyfriend’s Ex’s name (which she only met once). And ever since there has been a few more things: posting on Ex’s wall, commenting about my weight, asking for pictures of just her, FIL and then fiance for Emmy Awards and I even had to cancel wedding and plan something smaller that she could be a part of because she kept trying to invite people that we didn’t know. Never offer for any help in the wedding planning process and didn’t give a dime.
We chose to have an official ceremony in Paris, FR but had a civil wedding and dinner for about 30 guests here in the States. So we got married in the courthouse with my mom (is currently not working), 19 year-old sis, 17 year sis, my son, his mom and his dad. After we go and have lunch and they didn’t offer to pay for our lunch. They are well off not rich but could afford $70 as they were staying with us and didn’t rent a car. Next we have a small reception and I thought they did not give us a wedding gift when my mother mentions that his parents talked about a card. I finally ask him a few days later and he says that they gave him a card with $50 addressed only to him. I was very upset about the fact as I spoil this women rotten and buy her mani pedis, sunglasses, massage while she was here this time for her not to include me in OUR WEDDING CARD. She pulled something similar for Chistmas, sent hubby a $200.00 gift card, me a $5.00 bracelet and my 9 year old NOTHING. I don’t know what to do for this actions not to hurt me and always end up in a huge argument with my now husband over this. I dont know what to do or if I am overreacting. Please share your opinions..
Post # 2
I would be upset. I would tell you DH calmly that though it absolutely makes sense for her to shower you with presents and affection, on the occasions when the whole family should be included together (christmas or your wedding), it feels like MIL is excluding you by only directing her gifts and attention to him. You’re not trying to keep him from having a special relationship with his mom, but sometimes it feels like she either forgets you’re a family unit now or chooses to ignore that fact. You’re feeling a bit excluded, and you’re sure she’s not doing it on purpose (even though you are, it’d be better for him to come to that conclusion himself), but it’s just something that has been bothering you a bit. if it happens again, point it out and ask his opinion. if it’s truly egregious (like only directing your WEDDING GIFT to half of the couple. btw that’s absurd), then bring up your concerns again more strongly. ask him if he would consider it strange if someone else did that. your MIL should be MORE inclusive than other people in your lives, not less inclusive.
Post # 3
You can’t force her to change her behavior. You CAN emphasize that you two are a family unit. So when you send the thank you card for the cash, have it addressed from “Mr. and Mrs.”, and make sure you write something like ” Thank you for your generous gift! John and I will put it towards our house fund (or whatever).” Every time she gives a gift, make sure both your names are on the thank you. She’ll get it eventually. And if she doesn’t, the money all goes towards the same thing anyway.
Post # 4
MariContrary: +1. Yep. That’s what I would do!
Post # 5
And I guess if you are bothered by how much you give, it is time to stop the gravy train then. Quit treating her to all this nice stuff. Maybe she will get the hint.
Post # 6
I think H ought to tell his mother that her oversight was hurtful to you and that she may not have been intending to send a negative message, but that exactly is how it came across. I also don’t think it’s any accident that H got $200 for Christmas and $50 for his wedding. Unless she’s starting to be a bit out of it, these seem like some pretty passive aggressive messages.
I would also stop treating her to anything special. She probably thinks of all that as gifts from her son, not you.
Post # 7
MariContrary: Thanks so much for the advice.
Post # 8
marlaxr: Are your DH’s parents old school and sexist by any chance? I ask b/c something similar happened to me whenever I used to go visit my dad’s father (he was pretty absent as a grandfather hence I don’t really regard him as one). Whenever my younger brother would visit, they would give him an envelope stuffed with cash as a gift. Me? Crappy cheap jewelry. In addition to that, they never asked me about my job, but would ask the guy I was dating at the time what he did/about his career. Needless to say, I don’t visit/bother with them anymore. Just something to think about – it could just be them being old school and sexist. It’s extremely offensive nonetheless, but could explain why this is happening.