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Difficult daughter-in-laws

(110 Posts)
Bea Tue 10-May-11 14:42:37

I have always been nice to my daughter-in-law and never interfere but she has always disliked me and now prefers my grandson to spend more time with her family than ours does anyone else have this problem and how do they deal with it?

nanapippa Tue 10-May-11 16:19:01

A son is a son 'till he finds him a wife a daughter's a daughter for the rest of your life. Sadly that old saying is invariably true and daughter in law issues just seem to be comon place, unless one is very lucky. Just keep being nice and know that you have done your best. Things may change as the children grow up and as long as you are always there you know you have done the right thing. Good luck.

Cornflake Tue 10-May-11 18:41:06

I think we will always be second best to the girls mum,it is something we have to understand and except. I have an ok relationship with my dl. A wonderful relationship with the two grandaughters as often look after them as her mum is still working.When it comes to weekends etc I have learnd that they will be at her mums for dinner or she will be with them. It can sometimes be lonely as I would like to see more of my son as am a widow and alone, but I just need to make a life for myself as well,early days yet,but am learning.

Bea Tue 10-May-11 18:56:22

Thanks for that, i will keep at it.

crimson Wed 11-May-11 01:32:43

Gosh, Cornflake, it does seem unfair that you do the childminding but don't get the nice weekendy bits, but that's how it seems to be. My son has just come out of a long term relationship [no children] and he spent most of that time with his girlfriends family. We have to spend a lot of time not saying things, don't we! Having said that, perhaps they feel that, having looked after the children in the week, you're probably feeling tired and need a break and some time to yourself? I really felt my age when I started looking after my grandchildren.

lucyjordan Wed 11-May-11 16:50:31

If the Mum is still working perhaps she feels that as you get to see the children during the week time, its only fair that the children get to see there other granny at weekends. Perhaps the other granny works as well and weekends is the only time she has free.

My husband spent more time at my mothers house than he did his mothers house, it wasnt because he liked my mother better than his, or that i didnt like his mother, i got on very well with her, but because my mum in law generally worked weekends, my mum didnt, and we always went to her house for sunday lunch.


If you dont get along with your daughter in law then what is stopping your son paying you a visit and bringing the children with him? Its not just daughter in laws that are at fault, when it comes to this sort of thing, many sons could do more to make sure their children see as much of both sets of grandparents, and im sure that many of the daughter in laws would appreciate a little bit of free time to themselves.

maxgran Fri 13-May-11 13:54:47

My DiL is quite possessive of my son and doesn't like him having friends, let alone a mother !
I get on quite well with her on a one to one basis but if my son is there she is not as friendly.
On mothers day she insists my son goes with her to visit her mothers grave and will do anything to make sure the rest of the day is taken up so he cannot come and see me.

I have one grandson with them but I only ever see him if I go there or my son brings him to see me - she never comes with them, claiming she has too much to do !
I don't take offence at any of this,.. My DiL is probably insecure and I just accept her the way she is. I know my son loves me very much - but he has to put her and his son first and sometimes he has to let me down to keep her happy !
Mind you, if she was nasty or rude to me in any way I would not take it !

Bea Fri 13-May-11 15:05:14

Same here my DL is totally possesive with my son and doesnt like him to visit us or my other son for more than 45 minutes she has a very insecure nature and sees us as a threat although none of us are. At the same time she spends full days with her family. I am learning to just enjoy visits if they happen but it is a pity. She has never confronted me but gives me evil looks when my son is not looking.

Bea Fri 13-May-11 15:11:35

lucyjordan Thanks I have suggested him bringing my grandson over while she has a break sometimes he does but sometimes he cancels at short notice all very difficult.

maxgran Fri 13-May-11 15:43:11

It IS difficult Bea,... I have always been determined to get on with my DiL because she is the mother of my grandson and because my son loves her..
She actually reminds me of how I was myself when I first got married. I was very insecure and saw my MiL as competition ! I understand how she feels because I used to feel like that - and I feel guilty now for being unreasonable with my own MiL !
I have a lovely relationship my my grandson - which I wouldn't have if I was hostile in any way to his Mum

GtGran Fri 13-May-11 18:42:20

My older daughterin laws,I was very close to. But these younger ones are the total limit.
My sons and grandsons cook wash and clean even wash and dry the girls clothes,we were all on holiday once and one particular daughter in law stayed in bed while my son packed and decanted hundreds of small items in plastic bags for security.
I alwasy say the only thing these modern girls seem able to do is "get Ready" then they rush out leaving a mess everywhere. I even held a weekend once what my grandson called a grannys sleepover. We discussed all weekend how being feminists we had made our sons too nice and a complete walkover because these young women didnt understand the politics of liberation just the opportunity for an easy life.
Many of us are amazed at the young men we have brought up being absolute skivvies whilst their girlfriends plaster their faces with make up or sit for hours on facebook

Harrypotterfan Fri 13-May-11 23:23:14

Ha ha ha gtgran!!!!!
Imagine that. The men doing the work. Call the police quick
Maybe their wives deserve a break on holiday

Uabvvvvvvu. My god!

GrannyTunnocks Fri 13-May-11 23:30:18

I am very lucky as I get on very well with my DIL and she lets me see the grandchildren as much as I want. As my daughter lives abroad I enjoy having the company of my DIL.

GreyHairedWorrier Fri 13-May-11 23:31:46

Harrypotterfan, are you on the right forum? I think bratsnet is -> that way.

Harrypotterfan Sat 14-May-11 10:27:05

Sorry gr gran is being ridiculous!
Have you read her comments. "even wash And dry the girls clothes" shock horror!!!!!

In our house we have an equal division of labour. I suspect gt gran only sees what she wants to see!

GreyHairedWorrier Sat 14-May-11 18:44:59

Yes, I read her comments, and I agree, she's a little old-fashioned. What do you expect on "gransnet"? The notion of an equal split of work is new; although there have always been some men who willingly took on household tasks, it's not that long ago that a man pushing a pram in public was an amazing sight, to be gossiped about for hours (much of it questioning his masculinity.)

If he actually changed nappies (especially a daughters), there would be wondering looks. And anything as intimate as handling a woman's dirty laundry, well!

Society has changed at an amazing rate, just in the past 50 years or so. When I was a child (I'm 49) most people still went to church on Sundays, and all the shops were shut. Sunday afternoons were for quietly reading indoors, there was no daytime TV. Women were expected to give up work upon marriage, and a divorcee had failed to keep her man. "Unmarried mums" were beyond the Pale.

I'm glad we've moved on from a lot of that, but can't you see how strange it all seems to some people nowadays? You've no need to be rude about it.

lucyjordan Sat 14-May-11 19:41:33

Im 63 i was born in 1947, my father pushed me in my pram every sunday morning, so my mum could prepare lunch and have a bit of peace. When in 1960 my mother gave birth to twins, he changed nappies, washed clothes and did housework and always shared with the cooking. My mother was a housewife and only returned to work when all her children were in school, and old enough to look after themselves

My own husband pushed my childrens prams in 68 nd 71, he too was a good cook, and contributed his fair share to the housework as well, I was a housewife too, and i would often take the children out to visit friends for the day, and come home and find he had hoovered right through and washed the kitchen floor.

I dont think it has anything to do with the times, its more to do with the environment some people grew up in. We all live by example, and i blame the women who have allowed their husbands to continue with an antiquated attitude to women, and rearing their male offspring to believe that women are only there to look after them.

After WW II many women were not prepared to go back to being the slave of the household and there husbands, and many men appreciated that women were equally as capable, (sometimes more so) and certainly equal in status to men. The days of women pandering to the whims of their husbands, has long gone, but there will still be some who are still living in the age of the dinosaur, and thats the fault of their mothers, because they have allowed their sons to see their own subservient behaviour towards their own husbands and have allowed their own sons to believe this is how things should be.

GreyHairedWorrier Sat 14-May-11 19:45:25

But GtGran's complaint was that the younger men were doing all the domestic stuff, while the young women sat about painting their nails/fbing. grin

lucyjordan Sat 14-May-11 20:09:06

I know one husband who paints his wifes toenails for her

Harrypotterfan Sat 14-May-11 20:22:13

Fair point grey haired. You have put it more eloquently than me.

grannyrosie Sat 14-May-11 21:06:06

Am loving reading all this!

I have a lovely daughter-in-law who sadly lost her first baby last year - he lived for six days. Both she and my son have been incredibly brave over the whole situation and together raised £11,000 for the premature baby unit. She is now 14 weeks pregnant and we are all crossing our fingers.

She works full time and I shall be around to help when she returns to work - she wouldn't expect me to do it all the time as the baby will go to nursery. We discuss what suits us all best. Her mum doesn't live locally.

I look after their dog on and off during the day and their way of thanking me is to take me out for a meal now and then or I might get a surprise present - if there was any sort of friction I would be very sad. What they do in their home is their business, but I know that they are a good team - a friend and I have a good motto - "zip it", ie keep your thoughts to yourself!

harrigran Sat 14-May-11 21:44:38

Since my husband retired he has taken over the ironing and he really is very good at it.

glassortwo Sat 14-May-11 22:17:10

I think the old saying " A son is a son 'till he finds him a wife a daughter's a daughter for the rest of your life." is so true, my children are so typical to this saying.

My dear Mil was very nice when we were "courting" but as soon as we announced our engagement she went on the defensive and even to the point she was not coming to the wedding.

It took us until my Ds was born to get over our differences and we became the best of friends, I miss her so much since she has passed away, all I can say to all mother in laws and daughter in laws, learn to live with each other as individuals and not enemy's fighting for the sons attention, you might find your best friend!!!!

Nonna2 Sun 15-May-11 09:37:34

Having had difficulties with both of my MILs I've always been profoundly aware that one day it will be my turn to be 'the wicked witch of the West" to my son's future partner.... when he was first born I actually used to say to him "one day your wife is going to hate me" LOL.

My Grandson is my daughter's child and I'm lucky in that we have a very close Mother/Daughter relationship and she lives very close by. I was there when Kaylum was born and I get to see him most days even if it's just for 10 minutes or so.

BUT I'm always aware that he has another Nanny who loves him just as much as I do grin and that she needs to be included by me if my daughter and son in law aren't to feel torn and she isn't to feel left out.... so I made friends with her: If we are having a family BBQ then his other Grandparents are invited, she pops in for coffee if she's passing and we keep in touch and collaborate on helping our kids out, on surprises and presents and generally try to be a kind of support tag team so that we can both fit in work and other commitments smile (for example my daughter is expecting our 2nd Grandchild in October ... I've booked a 4D scan as a surprise for them but I can't go - so she is going instead - I'll watch the DVD lol).

I can't help but think that us mothers of the dreaded daughter in laws have a responsibility to make sure that all of our grandchildren's relatives are included in their lives where possible. If we can make their partner's mothers welcome into our own families then they will too. Personally, having had parents who were not really interested in my children, I get a real kick out of having all of the people who love Kaylum best around him and seeing just how surrounded by family he is grin

Leticia Sun 15-May-11 09:58:03

I agree entirely Nonna2. I never understand keeping families separate and the DIL never seeing her MIL on her own-always with DH because 'she has to'. I often had both lots together and my mother saw my PIL on her own. Make friends-long before there are any children. The important thing, in my mind, is to have a relationship of your own that has nothing to do with your partner.
I think 'only a son until he gets a wife' is utter rubbish! (unless you get a controlling, insecure DIL)