Mother in Law Plays Victim

posted 2 years ago in Family
Post # 17
Member
1217 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

janejoe94 :  If I were you I would go straight into couples’ therapy. Calmly tell your DH that you have some concerns regarding the lack of boundaries that are currently in place with your Mother-In-Law and you think that the two of you could benefit from talking it out with a therapist. Then before you go to therapy make a list of examples (like you’ve given us) of things she’s done that you’re not ok with so that you’re prepared.

Post # 18
Member
3467 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

YOURself? So instead of “honey, I need you to stand up to your mother and be more firm with her when she tries to wiggle into our vacations,” it becomes “Honey, I’ve realized that rooming with your mother doesn’t work for me. Going forward, if she wants to join us on a trip, I will book a separate room. If you want to sleep with her, I don’t want to come between that, but I will need my own space.”

Likewise with the crashing with your parents: “I am not comfortable with imposing your mother on my parents this way. It’s hard on them and they don’t deserve it. So the next time she mentions coming out here, I’ll let her know right away that staying with my folks is not an option” as opposed to telling him that he needs to tell her to back off.  Eventually, he should realize how ridiculous it is to keep bending to her the way he does.

My husband is not enmeshed with his mother. But early in our relationship she showed a few red flags (primarily related to attempting to control us) and I looked to him to correct all her issues. My husband is used to her behavior, so he finds it easier to overlook/avoid (as long as it’s nothing too egregrious) than to have a whole “talk” with her about every single annoyance. At some point, I realized that while she’s *his* mother, this is *our* marriage and *our* life and we are both equally entitled to neutralize any threats we perceive. I now have no problem being the “bad guy” when it comes to preserving my own sanity and the strenth of my marriage.  When she comes over unannounced, I’ll sweetly stand at the door and say “how sweet of you to drop by; listen I wasn’t expecting you and I’m busy with something in the house so I’m afraid I don’t have time to entertain you right now. Next time, why don’t you give me a call beforehand so I can accomodate you. Oh, Ryan? He’s won’t be available to chat until later. Enjoy the rest of your afternoon, now. Love you!” as I walk her toward the gate. Waiting for my husband to feel as strongly about these things as I do, or for him to develop a similar motivation to put a stop to it, I might have lost my mind. 

Post # 20
Member
1217 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

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janejoe94 :  It sounds like the talk was a good start but you’re right – him paying for an apartment for her is totally inappropriate. You definitely need to get into therapy. And definitely still go post this on DWIL – they can tell you exactly what to say and do because they’ve seen this situation a million times before.

Post # 21
Member
226 posts
Helper bee

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janejoe94 :  This woman is batshit crazy toxic. This is defcon 5 manipulation. Hollllllyyyyy hell.  There is so much nope I don’t even know where to start. You have to set boundaries with your husband and you have to start telling her no consistently. Don’t even let her stay one night on the house hunting trip. You can’t bring children into this disaster. Hot damn. She sounds mentally ill fyi.

Post # 22
Member
226 posts
Helper bee

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janejoe94 :  also she is not his responsibility! At all! Period! He needs therapy. 

Post # 24
Member
2371 posts
Buzzing bee

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janejoe94 :  From your update, unfortunately, it sounds like your husband has a LOT of issues of his own.

It’s not surprising, really, considering she’s been warping his reality to fit her desires his entire life. This sort of manipulation is incredibly hard to overcome in adulthood, and pretty much your ONLY solution at this point is therapy.

She has demanding that everyone around her take responsibility for HER emotional state for so long that they all now see that as perfectly reasonable. 

She has demanded that her two sons stand in as surrogate husbands to her for so long that they both do it reflexively.

Whereas in a HEALTHY, UNENMESHED relationship, everyone would be pointing out to her that SHE is the only person responsible for her emotional state, and that it’s terrible parenting to guilt your own sons into fulfilling the husband role.

It sounds like this woman has never stood on her own two feet before, or taken responsibility for her own role in why her life has ended up this way. 

I’m incredibly lucky that Fi is not enmeshed with his mother, but even HE still has a hard time drawing the distinction between healthy and unhealthy behavior displayed by his mom, because his reality has been skewed by her his entire life. Since he’s not enmeshed, it’s pretty easy for me to educate him on what she’s doing, and we stay united. 

Since your husband is INCREDIBLY enmeshed, you are going to be the enemy from this point onward. He was reasonable-ISH this time only because you didn’t press your point. He’s still stubbornly insisting on fulfilling the husband role, and he’s still clearly oblivious to how unhealthy this dynamic is. 

And. Sorry to say, he is STILL placing her over you on his list of priorities.

So the more you push from here on out, the more he will see you as the enemy and double down. 

At this point, you REALLY need to see a therapist. 

And definitely do NOT bring children into the relationship until this is resolved.

These two books may help to educate you further:

https://www.amazon.com/When-Hes-Married-Mom-Mother-Enmeshed/dp/0743291387/ref=pd_sbs_14_4?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=0743291387&pd_rd_r=727eefb3-6421-11e8-8ce9-a3e8d727e07b&pd_rd_w=12q80&pd_rd_wg=ZOQi7&pf_rd_i=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_p=5825442648805390339&pf_rd_r=1Q804J7H5AE66VMKP4D7&pf_rd_s=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_t=40701&psc=1&refRID=1Q804J7H5AE66VMKP4D7

https://www.amazon.com/Toxic-Laws-Strategies-Protecting-Marriage/dp/0060507853/ref=sr_1_12?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1527616422&sr=1-12&keywords=toxic+mothers

Post # 26
Member
971 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

oh bee sorry to hear you are going through this. i hope he is able to come around i think what you wrote is very good at softening the blow. I would be very very uncomfortable and i got a bit of anxiety reading about the things you go through. for your health and the of your marriage, it is important he weens off the nipple. Im sorry but you are going to have to be the bad guy. i would give my husband al ulitmatum. either he fix his relationship with his mom or i would stop holding back my thoughts and she is going to know how i really feel. no grown ass woman deserves a bandaid from me, I would stop caring about her feelings because it doesnt matter shes going to bad mouth you anyway. 

sometimes we dont know we are dating a mommas boy, until what you thought was cute is not cute anymore. nip it in the bud or get over it and become roomies

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