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Frequent Fry HerTM
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frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 7-DEC-02
Thanks for all your advice everybody.  I got the responses to three of my posts in two days!  Quite a bit to digest.  I thought that I'd keep you up to date on the stories.  About my FMIL lying about my DF's educational background:  There seemed to be quite the consensus that my DF and I shouldn't be backing up FMIL's lies.  Truthfully, I had felt the same way, but since he had been doing this since before I came into the picture, and it was more about his relationship with his mother, I had let him have his way about it.  You guys emboldened me a bit, and I showed DF everybody's responses.  He says that, in principle we're all right, but that he chooses his battles with his mother, and that this just isn't on the top of his list of priorities.  And, he thinks that, as long as these people don't find out, nobody's getting hurt by any of it.  I think that, at some point, someone is going to find out, and someone will be hurt.  But, I understand that my DF can't fight with FMIL over every little thing, and I'd like him to save some of his battles for defending me (which he does).  About my FMIL lying about her ex-husband's death:  I was surprised about how many of you disagreed with me on how dysfunctional that is.  Maybe I wasn't as compassionate as I could have been about the situation that she found herself in.  I also just wanted to clarify that I found that web page before my DF and I were seriously dating.  I didn't know a thing about his father, and was just doing a search on a guy I had a big crush on (now my DF).  I happened to come across a page about a person with a very similar name.  I showed it to DF, just to ask if he knew this person.  It was he who decided to bring it up with FMIL.  I don't expect him to start a relationship with this biological "father" at all.  Of course I don't want him involved with this drug addicted, physically abusive man.  Although I'm not sure that his alcoholic, physically abusive mother is much better!  About my FMIL telling me that she wanted the ring back when we split up:  Everybody who said it was an honest expression of an understandable feeling was right, and I knew that too.  I just found it a little off-putting.  Partly because of your advice, I'm really going to work hard at putting it out of my mind.

        Signed - Willing to Listen

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 19-NOV-02
I'm worried about how my FMIL will behave at our wedding.  At my DF's ex-girlfriend's wedding, she cried, LOUDLY, all the way through the ceremony.  She then bawled on the bride's shoulder, "I still think of you as my daughter!"  Keep in mind that she did not seem to particularly like this ex-girlfriend when she and my DF were dating.  She's actually fairly nice to me, although controlling, demanding, and often drunk.  Does anybody have any tips on keeping this hysterical woman a little calmer throughout our wedding?

        Signed - Anxious Bride

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 7-NOV-02
My FMIL seems very attached to material things.  This wouldn't bother me, except that she tries to impose that ethic on us.  She asked where we were going to do our bridal registry.  I said, "A big, national department store (my relatives live on the other coast)."  She thought that we should register at the most expensive boutique store in town.  My relatives and our university friends couldn't possibly afford even the cheapest thing they sell.  She said that we have to pick out a china pattern.  My DF said that we'd register for everyday things, but we weren't planning on getting anything that gets put on display in a cabinet and never used.  And, anyway, she has THREE sets of expensive china which DF is going to inherit some day (he's an only child).  She said that some day we'd regret that choice, and that at some point it was going to become important to us to have these nice things.  My DF is 30.  When exactly are we going to grow up and adopt her values?  She mentioned how important it is to invite HER friends, and for me to meet them before the wedding, because they're going to buy expensive gifts.  I mentioned the brand of dishes my family used while we were growing up, and she snickered and called it "cheap".

        Signed - So I Don't Have Expensive Tastes, Shoot Me

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 4-NOV-02
I thought I was clever, and that I had figured out a way to help keep my FMIL from getting intrusive and controlling about our wedding.  I was wrong.  Apparently, crazy people don't follow the rules of logic.  Since both my parents will be walking me down the aisle, my FMIL will be the last one seated by my DF.  I'm not even going to be around at that point.  And, since I don't have strong opinions on classical music, I don't care what music is playing at that point.  I suggested to FMIL that she choose a song that she liked.  I thought it might make her feel included, without DF and I having to give up any decisions that are important to us.  She resisted strongly, saying that it was OUR wedding, and WE have to chose the music.  I said fine, and told her that I just thought it was a decision she might want input into.  She kept going on about how she couldn't possibly make that kind of decision for us.  Fine, whatever.  She can be seated to whichever song happens to come up at that point on the prelude CD that I'll put together.  She then moved on to the music for the processional.  DF and I would like a good friend of ours to sing a favorite love song during the processional.  FMIL started telling us what a TERRIBLE idea it was to have vocal music for a processional.  She feels that if people are listening to the lyrics, it might distract from my entrance.  I don't like any of the traditional processional music, and DF and I are pretty attached to the idea of our friend singing for us.  So, I said I hadn't thought of that point, but we'd consider it.  She just kept on talking, telling us when the appropriate times to have vocal solos were, and being very insistent.  So, she can't make decisions when we don't care, but if the decision is possibly important to us, she has to have her way.

        Signed - Couldn't POSSIBLY Interfere

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 30-OCT-02
My DF and I have discussed having the congregation take a vow at our wedding.  This site has given me inspiration for some of the wording.  I was thinking something like:  "We, the family and friends of (groom) and (bride), give our love and blessings to their marriage.  We understand and respect that (bride) is the most important person in (groom)'s life, and that (groom) is the most important person in (bride)'s life.  We vow to provide our support and encouragement as (bride) and (groom) work to build and sustain an eternal, loving, and fulfilling marriage."  Do you think that anyone will be offended?  Will it have any effect on those people who may be inclined to meddle?

        Signed - Bride With Foresight

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 23-OCT-02
My FMIL has not spoken to her brother, who lives on the opposite coast, in over a decade.  This was due to some kind of dispute.  My DF used to visit this uncle and his cousins at Christmas as a child.  But, he stopped talking to them shortly after his mother did because she harped on him every time he talked to them, and that just started getting to be too much.  Recently, one of these cousins died in an accident.  On the phone, my DF found his mother to be overemotional and very fake about how upset she was about this death.  I defended her to him, saying that, even if she wasn't talking to this family, it was still her niece - she had known her as a little girl, and I could understand that she would be very affected by it.  A few days later, we visited FMIL for dinner.  As soon as we got there, she told us how horribly upset she was.  She then explained that she wanted my DF to go across the continent and attend the funeral.  She said that her brother was "an @sshole, but even he doesn't deserve this."  She wasn't willing to visit her brother, but she figured she could halfway visit him by sending DF in her place.  My DF explained that he hadn't talked to these people in years, barely knew his cousin, and didn't feel that a funeral was the appropriate time to try to sort out family issues.  She kept explaining how, "this is the time for families to come together," but my DF stood his ground.  Then, she sighed and said, "Well, it's your choice."  She was silent for a while as she chopped vegetables or something, and then she said, "I just thought that it might be a good idea, because this was such a horrible tragedy."  My DF repeated that he didn't want to go.  This cycle - her claiming to respect his choice and then starting in with, "I just thought," repeated about 4 or 5 times.  When she FINALLY figured out that she wasn't going to get her way, she immediately stopped behaving sad and depressed.  She brightened right up and said, "Well, on to happier topics.  How's the wedding planning going?"  And she got into her standard mode of quizzing us on our wedding, and making tons of very insistent "suggestions".

        Signed - At Least He Can Stand Up To Her

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 21-OCT-02
My DF is still good friends with his ex-girlfriend (also, briefly, fiancé).  She and I get along well, and she is going to be the best woman at our wedding.  My FMIL did not like this woman at all when she was dating my DF.  During their ten year relationship (much of which my DF and his mother were not on speaking terms), she insisted that the ex call her "Mrs. _____".  And, when they were engaged, the ex was never offered the beautiful heirloom engagement ring that I now have.  I guess I'm lucky, since I get to call FMIL by her first name, and was given the ring.  The ex recently got married, and FMIL, FSFIL, DF, and I attended the wedding.  All the way through the ceremony FMIL sobbed, loudly.  Nobody else was crying, and FMIL was being a little distracting.  My DF's ex later told us that after the ceremony, my FMIL went up to her, and through her tears, managed to choke out, "I still think of you as my daughter!"

        Signed - I Still Think of You as Hysterical!

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink Frequent Fry Her TM - moink /Posted: 18-OCT-02
Shortly after we were engaged, my FMIL had a talk with my DF.  She's not speaking to any of her siblings, etc., because of various petty fights.  "We're the only family we have," she said.  "It's just the two of us.  My husband isn't nearly as important as you."  DF is sure that she expected to hear that I wouldn't ever be as important as she is.  He didn't say anything, and later told me that he found the conversation quite disturbing.  He expects to be second to FSFIL (they've only been married three years), and says that *I* will always be the most important person in his life.

        Signed - Winning the "Competition" Without Even Trying

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink, 1 of 4 needed Frequent Fry Her TM - moink, 1 of 4 needed /Posted: 10-OCT-02
When my FMIL was over for dinner the other day, out of the blue she asked when my birthday was.  I told her the month, and she wanted the specific day.  Fine.  This had its intended effect when my DF said to her, "Yes, and your birthday is coming up soon, isn't it?"  She answered, "That's right.  Three more shopping days.  And you'd better get me something expensive."  DF called her today to wish her a happy birthday.  Apparently, he also invited her over for dinner, again.  The look I gave him when he told me this prompted a, "Well, okay, maybe I can take her out for lunch - alone."

        Signed - At Least He Gets It

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink, 2 of 4 needed Frequent Fry Her TM - moink, 2 of 4 needed /Posted: 14-OCT-02
I am engaged to an absolutely wonderful man.  He has been to he!! and back with his crazy mother.  Partly because of the physical and emotional abuse he suffered from her as a child and teenager, he didn't graduate from high school.  When child protective services could no longer take care of him, because he was 16, he ended up briefly living on the street.  He then got a job as a waiter, and worked his way up to managing the restaurant in a large hotel.  During this process, he reopened a relationship with his mother.  He left that job to get his high-school equivalency and start a university degree.  At 30 years old, he's working on his bachelor's degree.  The weird part is that FMIL lied to all her friends about his life.  When he got to about the right age, she told them all that he had graduated high school and started university.  A few years later, she told them that he started his master's degree.  Then, she said that he got his Ph.D..  In the last few years, several people have asked him what his topic was for his doctoral thesis.  My DF is not a pushover at all with his mother, but it was just too weird to tell these people that FMIL lied and embarrass her, so he "borrowed" a thesis topic from a Ph.D.. candidate friend of his.  We're looking forward to the interesting scene at our wedding when one of our university friends gets into a conversation with one of these misled people.

        Signed - Should I Call Him Doctor?

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink, 3 of 4 needed Frequent Fry Her TM - moink, 3 of 4 needed /Posted: 15-OCT-02
My DF has never known his father.  He was apparently a drug user and was abusive towards my FMIL.  When my DF was eight months old, my FMIL kicked her husband out.  In exchange for not asking him for alimony and child support, she had him promise to never contact them again.  When I first started seeing my DF, I looked up his name on a search engine.  I found a business page of someone whose first name was the same as my DF's (unusually spelled) middle name, and his last name was the same as my DF's.  I showed it to DF, and he said that yes, this was his father's name.  But, he vaguely remembered being told (at eight years old) that his father had died in a car accident.  At dinner with me, FMIL, and FSFIL, he told his mother that he had found the page (it include an address), and wondered if this was, in fact, his father.  His mother quickly changed the subject.  The next time she saw him alone, she admitted that she knew that his father was living there, and that she had lied to DF about his father's death.  She didn't think that it would be good for him to seek out this person, and she figured that if he thought his father was dead, DF would never try to make contact.  My DF doesn't think this is all that bad.  He just laughs and says that it's very much like his mother.  He also thinks that during his rebellious teenage years he might have tried to contact his father, but he's glad he didn't because he's not interested in a relationship with the sperm donor who had nothing to do with raising him.  I agree that DF has no reason to want to know this person, but I think it's still pretty dysfunctional that his mother had to concoct his father's death.

        Signed - Can I Tell My Future Children That Grandma's Dead?

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )

frequent fry her - moink, 4 of 4 needed Frequent Fry Her TM - moink, 4 of 4 needed /Posted: 15-OCT-02
My FMIL is actually not all bad.  I don't know whether or not she likes me, but since appearances are very important to her, she behaves as if she does, which I appreciate.  DF and I are both students, and we live on a very limited budget.  When we got engaged, we agreed that we didn't need an engagement ring for me.  After DF told her that we were engaged, she offered me a ring that had once belonged to her grandmother.  She brought it over and showed it to me.  It is a very beautiful ring, and I appreciate the sentiment of giving me a family heirloom.  There was only one strange moment.  While I was thanking her and telling her how beautiful it was (my DF has told me that if I want to be on her good side, I have to thank her profusely and repeatedly for anything she gives me), she suddenly got very serious, looked me straight in the face, and said, "If you two break up, you have to give it back."  Since I was a bit unsure of what to do in this situation, I just gave a little nervous laugh.  She said, "I'm serious.  If you break up, I want it back."  Now, I realize that, yes, when an engagement is broken off, etiquette says that the bride gives the ring back.  I would never be so rude and greedy as to try to keep an engagement ring if the wedding doesn't happen.  And, I guess it was open and honest of her to make her expectations clear.  I'm just not sure that it was an appropriate thing to say at that moment.  Anyway, I'm trying to be appreciative of the ring and forget that weird, awkward moment.

        Signed - Trying to Only See the Sparkle, Not the Flaws

( I want my own Frequent Fry Her TM Page )


The Sister Knot, Apter
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Why We Fight, Why We're Jealous, and Why We'll Love Each Other No Matter What

Secret Paths: Women in the New Midlife
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Women in the New Midlife

Working Women Don't Have Wives, Dr. Terri Apter Working Women Don't Have Wives
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