- 4 years ago
- Wedding: July 2012
To start, I have a lot of mother in law issues that I am currently dealing with, and actually her and I have been pretty good right now. I have a slew of old posts you can dig through, but in short, everything is fine now, I go to counseling, and I have been learning to cope with my feelings regarding her. Trust me, it isn’t a pretty issue.
But now someone has made even my MIL look like a saint. My aunt…
Some backstory: My aunt is a wonderful woman in a lot of ways. She is a very giving, generous person, and she has always been a big part of our lives. My aunt didn’t raise me, but I spent a lot of time with her when I was little (5 day stretches at a time during the summer sometimes). My brother and I LOVED it. She could never have kids of her own, so she treated us like we were her’s. She lives just down the street from my parents and she and my mom do nearly everything together. I was even just talking on a separate board about how the one gift I’m excited to receive at my shower this weekend is a twinkle the mouse on the moon nightlight and storybook. Every night she would tuck us in, read us the story (or rather we’d recite it) with the nightlight beaming on the walls, and we would fall asleep. It is the most beautiful memory I have with her and of my childhood.
In recent years, my aunt, who is 66 years old, has become very gossipy. I used to live in a small town of about 150 people. You cannot go up to someone and expect them to keep a secret. Everyone knows everbody else’s business. She works as a bartender at the local bar, and she likes to gossip. A lot, whether the info is true or not. So I choose not to tell her certain things I want to be kept a secret. For instance, I didn’t tell her about my pregnancy until after 12 weeks when everyone else knew because I didn’t want her spreading it around. She wasn’t happy I didn’t tell her sooner, but what do you do? Knowing what she’s like, I wasn’t willing to risk it.
I am 33 weeks pregnant. I have been happily married to DH since July 2012 (together since 2010), and I have a Saint Bernard named Napoleon that I love to death. We own our own home, have no debt, and we both have great jobs and support ourselves 100%.
When I moved in with DH when we got engaged, I had no choice but to give my then dog, Furby (RIP, buddy), to my parents to care for because he not only couldn’t climb steps but the apt. wouldn’t accept him. I offered to pay for all his medical expenses and food for my parents. They declined and cared for him as if he were their own. When DH and I moved into our house we were faced again with steps and couldn’t take Furby. WITH MY PARENT’S BLESSING we got a different dog, our Saint Bernard Napoleon. I offered to take Furby back, but my parents were attached. He also would be an only dog (I wouldn’t have gotten another dog if I had kept Furby) and have to stay in the garage alone, which they felt wouldn’t be a good life for him especially since he was used to being with their dog, a black lab, so they kept him.
So here is where the problem comes in: My aunt talks shit about everyone that walks through the bar doors. I know so many stories, I can’t even begin to tell you what I know. I see her once a week, on Sundays, at my parent’s house when we all eat breakfast together. That’s it. Otherwise I do not go to this bar, and I do not talk to my aunt. Not because I don’t like her, but because she works a lot and I have my own life obviously. Now in my adult life and my brother’s we are able to understand my aunt’s personality, and we challenge her a lot more on current events, morals, etc and that bothers her because she expects us to still be naive kids who love our aunt enough to agree with everything she says. So she gets mad at us often. To our face, she will treat us really nice, but she will make snide remarks about us to each other. For instance, she was talking about my brother to me about meeting his GF on Plenty of Fish, how it will never last and its “sick” that he has to waste his life meeting people online. Having never told her I met DH on eHarmony (because she had already expressed how online dating is stupid, risky, and relationships never last and all you meet on there are pedophiles), I got mad at her slandering my brother so I said, “Well, DH and I met on eHarmony, and we have been together 4 years.” She was very taken aback that I never told her and said nothing more to me, but she did tell my mom she couldn’t believe I would resort to online dating. By the way, her other nephew met his wife on Match, and they have been married for over 6 years.
My friend and I were talking last night, and she said my aunt, who actually talked crap about my friend’s husband and her to me one day (I shut that shit down pretty fast by telling her not to talk about my friends to me like that) was saying some stuff about my pregnancy. She said that my aunt was saying how I shouldn’t have such a big dog around a baby, how I shouldn’t have a baby if I couldn’t even take care of Furby and that my parents will probably end up raising the baby just like they did with Furby.
My friend, who has known my aunt forever, was shocked. She tried changing the subject, telling my aunt she didn’t want to hear stuff like that about her friend, and my aunt kept on harping about it. Had it just been said to my friend that would be one thing, but she said it where multiple other people heard her…people I have known my whole life and people that gossip equally as much.
So here I sit, 3 days before my baby shower, knowing that my aunt said something like this about me. About my baby. About my ability to be a parent. I am beyond mad. I’m hurt. Hurt that a woman who was like a MOM to me growing up could say something so awful. Hurt that she is so nice and loving to my face and then says that crap behind my back. I am so hurt, I don’t even want the stupid nightlight anymore. I don’t even want her to come. I wouldn’t even care if I ever saw her again. I mean, what will she continue to say and assume about me and my parenting abilities? What more will she say about my baby? My dog? My life? To people I have known my whole life. At a bar, nonetheless.
So I am faced with a dilemma: If I say something, she will deny it. I know that to be absolutely true because she always has and then she says “how could you take their side over your own family’s?” She always throws the “we’re related. you should believe everything I am saying” bullshit flag at me. Family can stab you in the back too. They shouldn’t, but they can.
So if I say something I run the risk of not only having her not come to the shower and ruining my relationship with her (which again, I don’t care) but also with my parents, and I am not sure if I want to do that. She and my mom are close, but my mom also knows what she’s like and my mom knows how she talks (and mom often just keeps her mouth shut and nods so not to cause conflict). Coincidentally, my aunt did this SAME bullcrap to my parents when they got married and had kids: said my parents weren’t fit to be parents because they didn’t have enough space, complained about the BM dresses, said my mom’s hair looked greasy and disgusting for the wedding, they shouldn’t get married because my mom lived in a fantasy world about love, etc.
If I don’t say something not only does she think this was ok to say, but I have to try to pretend this never happened on Saturday. I have to put on a happy face, look at that fucking nightlight, and try to look that woman in the face and say thank you for the memories, the best memories of my childhood. How awkward could it be if I am tense and cold towards her? My mom, who is also bringing my aunt down that day, will have to ignore the fact that my aunt said these things about me and her grandson.
I’m just at a loss for what to do. My dad thinks it should be addressed (not giving away who told me) before the shower and just tell her that we heard she said some untrue, hurtful things, and I am not happy about it and want to talk to her about it. If she doesn’t come, then she doesn’t come, but that’s her choice. He said with the way I’m feeling it will be tense and awkward with her there. And then if the truth comes out later, she will know I faked happy that day to get through it, and I’ll be just as bad as her if you think about it. My dad said I have been through a lot with my MIL already, and he doesn’t understand why everyone is doing this to me at 33 weeks pregnant when I don’t deserve it.
I’d still like to hear the Bees perspective on what I should do and maybe gather some ideas. She should have been cut out of my life a long time ago I think, but a part of me wanted her there despite what she does because it really never directly affected me. Well, now it does.