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Question
Posted by: Oh help! | 2010-04-09

Mother in law

My mother in law is 56 years old. Late last year my hubby, my mother in law and I talked about her retiring and coming to love with us. She had a job where she was required to be on her feet all day. She also struggled financially.
She''s been living with us now since middle November. We even sold our old house and bought a bigger one so they''re be enough space.

The thing is that she doesn''t respect me and husband''s privacy at all. in the morning she''ll come bursting in our room - sometimes at very inappropriate times. We can''t lock our door because we have a 4 year old son. At least he knocks on the door before coming in. We agreed that she will look after our son when I have exam prep (right before exams). He goes to preschool until 4, so I only need her during exam time.

She''s become hooked on television. She never had dstv and now has " her programme"  on every hour of the day, so asking her to help me with supper is such a mission that I''ve just dropped it.

Everywhere we go she will go with. I don''t mind that so much, but I do miss just having my husband and son for an hour to myself.

She has told me that I''m " slow"  - just because I''m still finishing my degree (final year) and her daughter which is 2 years younger than me already has a job and finished her degree before me. I''m 30 years old and decided to do my degree while looking after my son.

I have Bipolar and we discussed this with her before she moved in with us. Now, all of a sudden, she starts telling me that to be depressed is all made up and that there really isn''t such a thing. This from a woman whose husband was so depressed that he commited suicide.

She always puts me down and will never do this in front of my husband. Luckily he has noticed on the few occations that she thought he was out of earshot. He feels bad about the situation, but we agreed that we''ll just try a bit harder.

How do I handle this situation? I love her dearly and I''m really embarresed that she''s getting to me like this. I''ve always felt that she doesn''t think I''m good enough for her son. But, I''ve never given her a reason to think so as hubby and I have a very loving relationship and I treat him like a king.

Did we make a mistake in asking her to come and live with us? We only tried to do good...

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Phew !
Guys, please do try to keep the length of postings down by some careful editing, which will in itself be useful for you.
ou should have, before she moved in, and should now, agree basic rules with your husband, and then have a famil meeting with her and explain the rules very clearly - it is YOUR home and she must keeop to your rules while under your roof, and respect your privacy. And she must take her full share of chores, whatever is on TV. DSTV is so full of repeats, there's no excuse to avoid helping with supper - give her a copy of dish and tell her to figure out the timing of repeats, and if its not repeated soon, it will ceertainly be so, in a month or 2.
Tell her that you won't listen to her comments on your studies until she has completed her degree, nor listen to her comments on depression till she is a fully qualified psychiatrist. Maybe she feels guilt about her husband's suicide, and prefers to deny the existence of depression, as she probably ignored his as well.
Its not that YOU need to try harder - but SHe has to try harder to be amenable to your household rules and simple politeness.
Maybe it was a mistake to invite her to join you, but that's already done. Now set up the house rules. If she moved to a hotel and kept annoying the manager, she'd soon be asked to leave

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3
Our users say:
Posted by: wow | 2010-04-13

cs is really pissed off, but i agree with him. She needs to be reminded (by your actions) that she is not in a hotel but she is being " accommodated"  in your house!

don''t cook - make your husband to eat something on the way home - make a surprise reservation just for the 3 of you and it will sort her out! she is taking full advantage of you!!!!

Reply to wow
Posted by: Leigh | 2010-04-12

How many times in life do we make decisions that look so good in theory but turn out to be disasterous!
I was in a similar situation but with my daughter and her family. Please set conditions in place right now- things will only get worse. Adults, just like children, need to know the rules, and the more they get away with, the more they will push.
You and your husband are going to get more and more unhappy and eventually get to dislike your mother-in-law, which is not what you want.
Discuss what you want with your husband and then chat with your mother-in-law. You will all be so much happier.

Reply to Leigh
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010-04-10

Phew !
Guys, please do try to keep the length of postings down by some careful editing, which will in itself be useful for you.
ou should have, before she moved in, and should now, agree basic rules with your husband, and then have a famil meeting with her and explain the rules very clearly - it is YOUR home and she must keeop to your rules while under your roof, and respect your privacy. And she must take her full share of chores, whatever is on TV. DSTV is so full of repeats, there's no excuse to avoid helping with supper - give her a copy of dish and tell her to figure out the timing of repeats, and if its not repeated soon, it will ceertainly be so, in a month or 2.
Tell her that you won't listen to her comments on your studies until she has completed her degree, nor listen to her comments on depression till she is a fully qualified psychiatrist. Maybe she feels guilt about her husband's suicide, and prefers to deny the existence of depression, as she probably ignored his as well.
Its not that YOU need to try harder - but SHe has to try harder to be amenable to your household rules and simple politeness.
Maybe it was a mistake to invite her to join you, but that's already done. Now set up the house rules. If she moved to a hotel and kept annoying the manager, she'd soon be asked to leave

Reply to cybershrink

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