My Dear Mother-in-Law

by Diana B about a year ago in extended family

Ugh

My Dear Mother-in-Law

Can we talk about mothers-in-law for a second? I know I left my last story half way there and I promise I will finish it, eventually. However, I wrote that story on my 5-hour flight to see my boyfriend since he started his PhD and moved 2000 miles away. I was so happy I was going to spend some time with him that it inspired me to tell our story. I’ve been here for two weeks and they have been bliss. It’s like our own little heaven where we help each other around the house and never wear pants just because we can. Now, his mother showed up Thursday and tomorrow, Sunday, is my last day here before I go back home and don’t see him again for god knows how long. She arrived and I already knew it was going to be difficult since I don’t particularly like her but I know he is happy she’s here and that’s all that matters to me.

EXCEPT I can’t stand this woman! I really try, I swear I do. I am a very flexible person and I get along with almost everyone just because I always try to see the good in people. However, this lady stands for everything that I dislike, especially her passive aggressive behavior towards me that my boyfriend is completely unaware of. She is so controlling. Since she’s gotten here she has been complaining about the food we have in the fridge, the fact that we don’t use the dishwasher every day, and how it's “disgusting” we make rice on a rice maker. She also tells him she needs to talk to him about family drama but refuses to say anything in front of me—which normally I don’t care about, I mean I’m not interested in her gossip—but it's rude that she makes it a point to make me feel left out. She never agrees with what I suggest, and she is more than happy to push me aside to get him alone.

Before she got here, the plan was for her to rent a car so we could all go help my boyfriend buy a table for his office since he doesn’t have a car and carrying such things in the train is difficult. However, she decided she wants to go to the airport with us tomorrow and rent a car after I leave so they can go around the city and see all the tourist and fun sites together, and she says this in front of me.

My favorite part is how she manipulates him by telling him she’s such a good mother to him and he should be thankful and I’m just in the background rolling my eyes and looking into the imaginary camera from The Office wanting to yell that you don’t applaud a fish for swimming, that’s what it’s supposed to do. You don’t do good things or are a good mother so you can use it against people later. What kind of messed up mentality is that? She is so rude and passive aggressive with me and he just thinks she is being nice because he can’t notice her real motives. I guess he is too close to it to realize it. Every time she is around our relationship suffers. We have been together for two years, lived together for one, and we have never fought about anything except her. I try to be understanding and to get along but it’s so difficult when she is so fake and I always end up looking like the crazy bad guy. Before you wonder or go and judge me, let me just clarify I love his dad and his dad’s girlfriend. They are the nicest, sweetest people in the world and we even have a group chat together. Same thing with the rest of the family, they all love me and I them.

Yesterday he was talking how he wanted to get my mom a fridge magnet from the university since they have a tradition that every time we travel or he travels, he always gets her something for the fridge and she just lost it and all defensively told him that he should get one for his sister instead. His sister was here when he moved. She helped him, if she wanted something she could have gotten it herself. As I said before, I’m leaving tomorrow and I wanted to go with him to the airport so we can properly say goodbye and maybe have some privacy. However, he refuses to tell her not to go. It is almost an hour trip on two different trains. Why is she going with us? Am I insane? I am really a bad guy for wanting to say goodbye to my boyfriend without his mother watching? We are not 12 and this isn’t our first date, for the love of god! Do you guys have similar problems? Any advice? I feel like I want to punch a wall and scream for 7 hours because of how frustrated I am. I really try to be understanding, but I am a painfully honest person and I can’t hide my emotions to save my life. I want to be as passive aggressive as she is and just annoy her too but I simply can’t. I can’t even talk to my best friend about it because he doesn’t understand, he doesn’t see it. I guess I understand since she is his mom and all, but I wish he could stop being so blind, I don’t expect him to stop loving her or anything like that—that is insane as she is his mom and he will love her regardless of anything. However, you can love someone and still recognize their flaws, especially how mean they are to someone else you love. In my case, I love my mom and she is the best person in the world but I recognize when she’s being unfair or acting out and I call her out on it. The point is, she ruined our last days together and now I’m going to go home feeling horrible and missing him terribly. I don’t want to fight, but I know it's impossible to avoid. I can’t hide how upset I am and he hates seeing me like this so he won’t stop until I tell him what’s wrong. Feel free to contact me and tell me your mother-in-law stories. We can all share the frustrations together!

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Diana B

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