Posted by: Annemarie | 2009-09-24

My Husband &  My mother in law

Aloha Doc! I have a problem and it' s really affecting my marriage. My m-i-l has never liked me (we didn' t meet under the best of circumstances and when I wouldn' t jump when she said how high it didn' t make it better). My husband sees his mother SIX TIMES A WEEK! He goes from his work straight to her work to fetch her then stays for a visit. Then he has to visit her on Sundays too! We have fights about it constantly and today we fought again and he was defending her! I told him if my 77 year old grandmother can get herself around, why the hell can' t his mom. Then he says, oh he doesn' t want his mom to walk in the dark and she' s had a hip replacement, bla bla bla. I don' t believe anything he says- if she would stop spending her money on pottery and other such classes and expensive furniture she would have more than enough money to buy a car (her ex husband pays the bond for the house- all she pays is the electricity and rates and obviously for groceries). My husband says she hasn' t driven since she got her licence, but why does my marriage have to suffer because she decided to become a dependant leech? So I eventually got him to agree to stop fetching her and she has two months to get a car (if she doesn' t get one buy the end of the year my husband stop fetching her). But now I feel bad. Why?

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Our expert says:
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Aloha mahalo, and namaste,
Pity your husband has never grown up. I see no problem whatever in any man remaining fond of and involved with his mother --- but for a married man to visit her 6 times a week is a bit over the top. OK, so there's presumably a good reason for him to take her home after her and his work, though maybe it's simply convvenient for her no to look at any other alternatives for transport, like doing it herself. Sounds like she's happy to spend on her pleasures and past-times. If she CAN drive, she needs to stay in practice. What would she do it your husband was injured or unavailable ?
Sounds like you were appropriately assertive ( rather than aggressive ) and the ultimatum to her makes good sense ( thougn whether he will actually follow through on it if she doesn't do what is required, one waits to see ).
YWhy do you feel bad ? Good question. Maybe because both of them have taught you to feel bad ? Maybe you grew up to feel that it was somehow bad for you to assert yourself and to be active in getting something you really needed, rather than just meeting other people's needs before your own.
If what you did made you a wicked witch, we need more such witches around. Mazeltov !

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Our users say:
Posted by: Kay in Gtown | 2009-09-24

... because you' re now ' the baddie' ? The ' wicked witch' , who was assertive enough to stand up for your own marriage and not buy into your MIL' s and her son' s game? Good for you, may it go well! Your MIL might even learn a thing or two - we' re never too old. :)

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