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MIL takes over

(63 Posts)
afar Tue 10-Jan-12 12:11:35

I am starting to get really annoyed with my MIL and I trying very hard to ignore it an not make an issue out of it. My LB is 3 and I think quite well mannered, considering that he is only 3. When we go there for dinner he will sit next to me on one side and MIL will sit on my other side. While he is eating she will lean over me and tell my 3yr old to use his napkin or wipe his face and will also correct him when he talks before I even get a chance. It's like I'm not there. I like to think that it's my place to teach and decide when he needs to be corrected but apparently that makes me possesive? I didn't ask for help in mothering my child. And it just seems to be getting worse....

Annika Tue 10-Jan-12 12:23:58

Its hard I know, have you have you tried telling her how you feel or there some other member of your family who will put in a word for you.
Do you get on with her in other ways is she the sort of person you can talk to ?
Its hard for me to come up with any ideas to help as my MIL didn't care if any of my children were well mannered or if they had food on their faces, its not that she was easy going, it was that she had no intrest in me ,my DH(her son) or our children. If she didn't see us from one year to the other she wasn't bothered sad

Nsube Tue 10-Jan-12 12:53:00

I suppose she's doing what she thinks is best for your little boy and sees it as being helpful. Why don't you enlist your husband's help in this? She's his mum after all. Is he as irritated as you, or does it all go over his head? I think you and he need to agree on what is acceptable at the table and what is not and then HE needs to gently explain to his Mum that that is what you have agreed and the little one needs consistency. He should make sure the little one sits between you both as well!

afar Tue 10-Jan-12 12:55:38

Unfortunately not the kind of person you can talk to as everything gets taken as a personal attack, which is why I've been trying to ignore it. Can't deal witha huge blow-out now....

Nsube Tue 10-Jan-12 12:56:57

Is that your husband or your MiL? I still think it's a matter for him.

JessM Tue 10-Jan-12 13:03:00

Hi afar, you have started a previous thread about your MIL, back in October.
Still getting you down obviously. Does it upset your little boy these days? Or put him off eating?

afar Tue 10-Jan-12 13:06:45

We have in between us but it makes no difference, it annoys my hubby even more than it does reaaly feels like we are not supposed to be there?

JessM Tue 10-Jan-12 13:10:38

Does she play with him etc?

tanith Tue 10-Jan-12 13:17:06

I think you're doing a great job by ignoring her even though its hard. If its only happening in her home then just try to ignore her or get your husband to have a word. It sounds like no matter how diplomatic you are she is going to take umbrage(is that a word?) so best you keep out of it for the short time that its going to affect you all and let him deal with it. Maybe it would be better if you left him with her for a short time and you and hubby get some time together.. then its not going to affect you at all.

jingl Tue 10-Jan-12 13:24:25

This is like groundhog day.

There was another thread a while back about the Granny wiping the little'un's face.

You could do a search afar.

jingl Tue 10-Jan-12 13:25:52

Actually, if you put your name in the search box, you will find it quite easily.

It was in October.

afar Tue 10-Jan-12 13:26:48

To answer Jess, not playing with him but a constant stream of "wipe your face, use your napkin, do u want this, do u want that, u can't have ice cream until you've eaten all your food, all while leaning over me. We were almost cut-off before (they wanted to cut us off) the last time we tried telling them we had a problem with something..and we were so polite about it as well...leaving him with her will just encourage her and add to her sense of entitlement. I would just like to be his mom and not have MIL trying to be co-mommy.

jingl Tue 10-Jan-12 13:27:15

Here you are smile

afar Tue 10-Jan-12 13:32:11

Thank you jingl, if u read the other post u would see that was only about wiping the face, not about giving my child directions and lessons in manners.

jingl Tue 10-Jan-12 13:36:05


GoldenGran Tue 10-Jan-12 13:52:02

As a Granny, there are many times I want to correct something to suggest something to my daughter, (actually she is a very good Mum), but it is the golden rule, sit on your hands , button your lip, just don't do it. I s there any way your DH can just gently point this ouy to her? I realise how irritating it must be for you.

Nsube Tue 10-Jan-12 13:57:22

Is it a case of 'granny's house, granny's rules' or does she do it at your house too? You and your OH need to discuss this together and establish ground rules. Otherwise there may be a falling out, and, however irritating she is, it is very sad if grandchildren are estranged from their grandparents.

greenmossgiel Tue 10-Jan-12 14:00:52

My own mother was an absolute horror when we used to take the children there for meals. My father wasn't much better, really, come to think of it. Every mealtime was a nightmare. If they didn't eat all of their food they were nagged at, and weren't allowed pudding unless every last morsel had been eaten from the first course. One day, when my mother was wittering away at my son, who was 4-years-old at the time, my husband leaned over and removed the plate from the table, saying, "For God's sake, he's only 4. Leave the child alone!" There was a stony silence for the rest of the meal, and it didn't happen again. In fact, if I remember rightly, I don't think we went back very often to eat with them until the children were older. I think my mother actually quite enjoyed the nagging, and that was what was so upsetting. I do understand how you'll be feeling, I think. You're trying very hard, and perhaps she doesn't deserve it! However, if your husband can have a quiet word with her and let her know that you all want her in your lives, perhaps that will soften her ways a bit? Good luck - it's not an easy one.

maxgran Tue 10-Jan-12 14:05:52

I don't think you should ignore it. Can't you have a quiet word to tell MiL that you are already teaching him good manners as an ongoing thing and he may get confused if she does not leave it to you ?
I don't see why you should sit there allowing her to take over in a domineering way.
Sometimes I correct my 4 yr old grandson,.. but mostly when his parents have not bothered ! However, if I overstep the mark my son will ask me to leave it and I respect that. If my DiL said the same I would not be offended.

JessM Tue 10-Jan-12 14:45:36

Presumably this is how she behaved when your DH was that age. How did he turn out?
I correct my GKds e.g. say please and I will think about it. If I overstepped the mark I know there would be a very quick "Butt out mother!" from my son and something a bit more tactful from DIL.

bagitha Tue 10-Jan-12 15:35:32

Why do you go for meals there if it's so awful and your OH doesn't like it either? I would just stop going. Say no thank you. And when she asks why, tell her you can't stand the interference any more and you want her to leave the child alone at meal times.

Forthright? Who, me?

But nobody has EVER been that rude to me so I haven't had to be that forthright.

I really think you need to confront the problem (not necessarily your MIL, which is why I'm suggesting not going there for meals until she agrees to stop it) by asserting yourself as the mum, and your OH as the dad.

glammanana Tue 10-Jan-12 15:41:28

I think if you just confine your visits to an hour or two without staying for meals that the situation will soon be resolved without any unpleasentness,did you not mention your annoyance of her interferring when you spoke to her about wiping your DSs face at mealtimes when you asked for thoughts about her behaviour in October ? I would have thought she would have taken the hint then to avoid any further conflict.

supernana Tue 10-Jan-12 15:46:26

bagitha ear-splitting grin

bagitha Tue 10-Jan-12 15:52:08

Yes, well, I guess if, as a mum, you look as if you'll bite people's heads off if they interfere, they tend not to. Worked for me. Never had to lose my cool but I would have done if necessary. Grr.

bagitha Tue 10-Jan-12 15:55:23

Grandfather did once try to negotiate for DD1 when she was being a tawrag. But MIL supported me and, as I was saying She'll do as she's told, MIL was placing her hand on his shoulder and gently pulling him away. But then, my MIL was a saint. smile