In laws rant…again :(

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I am so mad at my MIL. I know she is not my favourite person in the world, but I know she is not a bad person. She is just who she is and she is a nice woman, just not to me. So when you read my rant, it is my rant, on not a reflection on her.

I was talking to my Mom last night and the topic of the in laws coming to visit came up. I mentioned that Hubby has applied for his leave and as soon as it is approved we will buy the tickets for them to come visit us.

My Mom had spoken to MIL last week. My Mom is like that. She calls up people and has long chats because she says someone has to keep relationships alive. My parents still host huge family functions and visit people for tea.

My Mom said to me that MIL told her she does not want to come visit us because the last time they were at our house they had to stay in our little house the whole time. It is boring at our house and there is nowhere to go. I was blown away! MIL told my Mom we should come to them and if I cannot come then it is OK. Hubby and Honeybear can go visit at their house in the middle of nowhere. There are a number of reasons we did not want to go there:

  1. They live in the middle of nowhere so it is three hours from the airport to their house by car, after you land. The bus/train is a 19hours trip (the train can be two days) and the station is still an hour from their house. They always complain they have no petrol money and the car is broken so they cannot fetch us. Which means we have to hire a car. Car hire is not cheap, and we are going to drive somewhere the roads are junk.
  2. We could drive ourselves and we have done it before. It is 16 hours by car if you do not get stuck in the roadworks. We could stay overnight somewhere, which is a must with a 3 year old in the car. That is another expense.
  3. We can write off four days of traveling to get there…so how much leave do we have to take to have time to spend with them?
  4. The have serious water restrictions so having 3 extra people bathing and flushing is an issue. We will also have to leave money for the extra water and electricity we will use.
  5. We have to buy all our own food and groceries because they cannot afford to host us.
  6. If Hubby goes alone, without me, it is not going to be easy for him with Honeybear alone. I often travel with Honeybear alone, and I am used to it, but I know it is not easy to travel alone with a child.

We thought they might enjoy a break in Pretoria. To come see some civilisation and just be somewhere different. It is way easier for them to come to us . They often go to visit with Hubby’s aunt who lives ten minutes away from the airport, so we thought it would not be an issue for them to get to the airport. The car seems to work perfectly when they are visiting the aunt and they have enough money. We said we would send petrol money too, for the airport trips.

The last time they came to us (Honeybear’s first birthday which we forced them to come to). They were supposed to stay one week only because we only had that much time off work. The stayed two weeks. We took them around every day for the week we were off work. The next week when we had to work, we offered to let them have my car to drive around to wherever they wanted to go. They did not want to drive the car because they said the Pretoria traffic is scary for them. They do not want the car. So then they stayed at home in our boring house while we went to work.

They wanted to go visit Hubby’s uncle who lives about 1.5 hours from us. I was not invited so Honeybear and I stayed home. Hubby drove them there and back twice. We live in a huge security estate with: a clubhouse, squash courts , tennis courts, cricket pitch, two swimming pools, a nine hole golf putting green and all the gardens so they could have taken a walk outside our unit and it would not have been that bad. They could have safely walked outside the estate too, to the nearby zoo or nursery. We do own a TV. The big thing is they came to spend time with us, not for us to entertain them 24/7.

I am very upset after all the efforts we went through to make a plan for them to see their grandchild once again, the do not want to come. At this point in time I really think they can stay in their dorpie forever and if I never see them or if they never see Honeybear, it will not bother me at all. It is not like we have endless money or time off work. We saved for the last six months so that we can buy plane tickets and send them the extra money for petrol and we have to buy a new bed for them to sleep comfortably. We could happily use that extra money to pay for things we want for ourselves.

They make me so mad! I can only imagine how Hubby feels about all this. He once said to me, his mother would rather live in the middle of nowhere instead of staying near him. It hurts me that my child does not seem good enough for them. They have never made any attempt to visit him or see him. I can have a two hour conversation with MIL on the phone, and not once will she ask about Honeybear. Sometimes it seems like she does not remember we have a child. If I do bring up Honeybear and I mention he is talking better. Off she goes about her other grandchild and how well he doing and all the new words he is saying and how he speaks to her on the phone (this is a child who unfortunately cannot speak; that sad state is another blog ). That other grandchild lives on another continent. I guess there is a good enough excuse for not visiting him.

I am so angry with her, instead of telling us she does not want to visit, she tells my Mom. She knew my Mom would tell me. I wonder who else she has been telling instead of telling us so we can resolve this issue. If she does not want to visit, but would like the money to go stay with her sister then she should tell us. We can do that. We can even stop mentioning our child and I can stop speaking to her, because it seems I am the huge issue here. Maybe I am the one that is bad and she does not want to stay in our house because I am there. Fine, we will try to organise other accommodation. I will not go out with them. It is fine. Hubby and Honeybear can visit with them. I am quite happy to not have to see the in laws. My FIL just sits there and does not have an opinion about much, unless MIL is not there. Whatever. I wonder if she realises the fight Hubby and I have every time I have to force him to call his parents. That it is me that is trying to organise a visit? I should just stop because it is not making her happy.

I know why she does not like me. I do not accept her opinions like Hubby and FIL. I speak my mind.   In my house, I will do as I please and I will not be told how to raise my child. If you do not respect my views about raising my child then I will not ever leave him alone with you. Also, you cannot leave a child alone with two old people, one of which has Alzheimer’s. It would be irresponsible as a parent. I bite my tongue but I too have my breaking point and there are no compromises around my child.

I am so mad!

This is completely my opinion and I am sure she is a brilliant mother, wife and grandmother to other people. I am not a saint either, but I was trying to do the right thing. Maybe we should just suck it up and drive to their house. I could live in the car for the days we are there because I am not welcome. (The ton is so small, there is no hotel or anything)

I have never had this much negativity sent my way before.

MIL and I have met only a few times because they live so far away, but I have been bad enough to leave a bad impression in those few times. I have never mentioned it to Hubby and I never will…or anyone else I know… but a small part of me wonders if the dislike does not stem from racism? Hubby and I are what SA calls a mixed marriage. It is an ugly thought on my part, but it does rear its ugly head sometimes. It would simpler if I know she does not like me because I said something insulting to her (which in her opinion, I probably have).

OK I will stop now and just rant in my head.

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11 responses »

  1. Ohh no how awful? Can I be honest with you, please tell me if I’m out of line but the whole time I’m reading your post and the more you say about the circumstances they live in etc – the more I was thinking – this is a racist thing…, sorry.

    I do think you should stop trying, it is not worth your marriage, your child’s happiness or your mental well being to try and connect to people who has obviously no desire to part of your lives. Their loss… but I know it is hard.

  2. Grrrrrrrr, how infuriating. Makes you just want to just throw in the towel and forget about any kind of relationship with MIL
    Maybe you should phone her and say you bought HB a really nice toy with the money you’ve been saving up for their trip because you hear they aren’t interested anymore.
    How rude, I’m upset on your behalf.
    Forget it, forget MIL. If she can’t make the effort………

    • That is a really good idea…HB would love some fancy new toy. Lol…I can just see the next installment about the evil daughter-in-law.
      I think we will just call and find out where they stand and then I am done.

  3. Oh no MC! What a state of affairs. I would be very very upset too … she should have just told you and hubby what she thought.
    Wow, I never actually thought about the racist angle before but sadly, you may have touched a bit on the truth there. Most of the older generation (including large parts of my own family sadly) still have that very old school way of thinking. Maybe that’s tainting her relationship with you and HB! How sad would that be?? 😦 SO sorry MC … I agree with RM and Helen … may be time to just let go if that relationship …

    • Thanks for the support Nusha. Hubby and I talked about it and we thought it best he sorts it out, because I seem to be way more upset than he is.
      I think this is the last time I will try, then I am done.

  4. Wow this is some crazy shizz… sounds exactly like my ex MIL…. If it wasn’t for the mention of grandchildren, I would honestly think you were talking about her.

    For your own sanity, I would say keep your distance. I found with my ex MIL, the moment she opened her mouth myself and the Ex Husband would start to fight.

    I’m glad you guys are able to talk it through,

    Stay strong xxx

    I’ve moved my blog to theurbanheartsa.blogspot.com if you would still like to follow a long.
    (eyes of spies and all that you know)

    • In laws have a law unto themselves. I am hoping I never do this to my kid and his partner one day. As I say she is not a bad human being, just something kicks in when you are a MIL maybe?
      Thanks for the blog address. I hope you manage to keep your privacy.

  5. Im so sorry to hear – sounds like she does have an issue with the mixed race thing. Ag you know she can stay in her klein dorpies till the end of days.
    I would agree with the others, dont invest too much effort in this – like you said you can use the money for better purposes at home too. Just keep it civil and thats it. Hope it doesnt affect your marriage in any way – but its sad that your hubby feels like they dont care either for him or his child…

    • Hubby and I are fine. We are big on talking things through (I think that is more me, but Hubby talks too). I am done with them for now. I will just make up their package and send it so they know we have not disappeared.

  6. Very difficult situation,I’m sorry that they just can’t be more understanding and accepting,but often it’s an age thing.My Mom is still very much from the racial aware age group and she is even judgemental of Afrikaans people!All we can do is hope that our children can all get along without issues.

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