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Mother-In-Law Stories
March 3, 2002
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MARCH 2002
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Help!!  My grandmother is driving me crazy!  I am 13 weeks pregnant, and she gives me advice almost every day.  I know that she means well, and that she really does love me, but her outdated ideas are insane.  Last night, she told me that I'll probably get cervical or uterine cancer, because it runs in the family.  And, to prevent it, I needed to douche.  She also said that, when the baby is born, I need to bathe it in alcohol to prevent skin problems.  My family has tried correcting her for years.  We've even called her doctor to tell him about some stupid things she does (drinks Epsom salt!).  He calls and tries to tell her that these things are potentially lethal, and to stop immediately.  She says, "Oh, really?  Of course I'll stop."  Then, she gets off the phone, and turns to one of us and says, "Don't you listen to those doctors.  They don't know anything.  My ideas have been working for years, and I'm just fine."  I will never leave my baby alone with this woman.  I love her, but she's crazy.  Any advice?  What do I say when she gives me some other stupid piece of advice?  I don't want to offend her.  But, she doesn't listen when I disagree, and we end up arguing.  Then, she says that I'm just upset because I'm pregnant, and that I need to calm down or I'll have a nervous baby.  AAAAggggghhhh!!!!!

        Signed - I'm Gonna Scream!

RESPONSE:  I'm Gonna Scream!
I feel for you.  I, myself, am 22 weeks pregnant, and I will share some advice that I got from my own mother.  If anyone gives you advice, politely thank them for their concern for you and your new baby.  Don't disagree with them or tell them they are wrong (especially if you know it will start an argument).  You can even mention how you are looking forward to raising your child on your own.  Maybe if you repeat, "Thank you so much for caring about our new baby.  DH and I are very excited for the chance to bring up OUR child, and your support is great," every time she gives you advice, she will catch on.  This way, there will be no arguments and no discussions, and you don't lose your head.  I don't know about having a nervous baby from being stressed, but I do know it makes for a frantic mom.  Take care of yourself.  You are the important one here.  Take care.

RESPONSE:  I'm Gonna Scream!
My grandma is the same.  I used to argue with her, but now I just nod and say thanks for the advice.  Of course, I never use it, but at least there is no fight!

I HAVE A SOLUTION!!!  After many sleepless nights over my MIL, I have finally come to terms with how these women work!  A few weeks ago, my MIL and I finally had a knockdown fight.  It was a long time coming, and I have written my story in here only to have so many responses tell me that she is an awful, mean lady who is seriously mentally disturbed.  Well, the fight finally brewed and exploded, and, after I had said all that has been brewing for 8 years, she was (for the 1st time ever) speechless.  I set rules for my household, my children, and the way she treats me.  If these rules are in any way broken, then she loses the right to see them, and we simply won't be around her any longer.  Now, keep in mind that I am married to a huge momma's boy.  But, once these women push long enough (8 years), then they, too, will come around, trust me!  If anything came from our discussion, she now knows that I am an adult, and she can't treat me like a little girl, especially in my own house.  Believe me, it was the worst conversation, and hardest thing I've ever done.  But, people (in-laws or not) just can't treat each other the way the MILs posted about here treat all of us.  They are strong women, but we, too, are strong.  Good luck!

        Signed - Set Rules and Be Strong

My MIL is not a very nice woman.  Before we were married, I had people come up to me from her small town telling me things that she was saying about me.  Well, I went on and ignored her, because I always thought that she had a self-esteem problem.  The week after we were married, I was telling her that my parents were so happy that I married my DH, and that they just adore him.  She then said, "Ya, DS knew that he would never marry a supermodel."  First of all, what does that have to do with what I was talking about?  And, second of all, how could someone say that to their DIL?  Well, the day that I finally broke was the day that she went to my best friend and started telling her lies about me:  About how badly I treat her, how I never make the bed when we visit, how I am jealous of her grandson, and that I need to grow up (there were so many more things).  Well, of course, my best friend was going to tell me.  When I found out, I was FURIOUS and HURT!!!  I told my husband that he better confront her, and that he wants to know that this wasn't going to go on anymore.  Well, he did, and she denied it all.  She said that my friend was lying.  Then, the other day, her sister told me that she told her that she gave us $1,000/month while my husband was in grad school, that they paid for our wedding, and that my parents never paid them back.  Oh my goodness, I blew up.  First of all, we have $75,000 in student loans, and she never gave us $1,000/month.  And, second of all, my parents paid for every bit of the wedding, and she never helped at all.  I think that she has a mental problem.  I could go on forever with so many stories, but I don't have the time.  I have never disliked someone the way that I dislike her, and sometimes I find myself taking it out on my husband.  I feel so sorry for him.  He has never been told, "I love you," by either of his parents.  I can't seem to get rid of the anger.  What do I do?

        Signed - What Do I Do?


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