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Selfish and cruel DL.

(16 Posts)
gillyknits Fri 02-Sep-16 13:59:52

I cannot believe how selfish and cruel my DL is being. She has been married to my son for eleven years and they have two beautiful children 3 and 6. She seems to be having an early mid life crisis and has accused my son of neglecting her. ( This after he had spent 6 days on his own with us to give her a break and 4 more days later that month camping alone with them.)
She accused him of being lazy and disinterested. She nags him all the time because he is not what she wants him to be. He said that in that case they should part but he would fight for custody of the children.
Now she is harking back to a trip to Nepal that she took when she was 20. She was 'truly happy' doing things for herself. She is planning to go back in two years.Now that the children are not so dependent on her!! In the mean time she is going to do a another mountain challenge in this country. This is a woman who has to lie down if she cooks a meal.
Now she has changed her mind and doesn't want to split up with my son.He is in a dilemma as he knows he will take a long time to rebuild the relationship but is worried about the children.
My question is how we will cope ,if/when they get back together, when we come to see her again. (They live four hours away)!
Do we say what we think about her behaviour or keep quiet? Don't think D.H. will be able to be under the same roof as her ever again!

Anya Fri 02-Sep-16 14:08:59

Don't get involved and carry on as usual. Couples go through bad spells and often sort themselves out. It sounds as if your DiL has a tendancy to say how she feels and perhaps not think sbout the effect it has on others. But, they are back together again and you could best be employed supporting this and helping to rebuild the relationship.

tanith Fri 02-Sep-16 14:10:59

If you are only getting your sons side of the story then I would be wary things may be far more complicated than you know.
In your shoes I would keep quiet and just try to let them sort things out without taking sides because if eventually the worst happens and they split up if you have burnt bridges with her and she has custody you may lose close contact with the children. Similarly if you have bad mouthed her to your son and they are now getting back together it may make them think differently about their relationship with you.
However badly we feel our children are being treated it pays to hold our council about partners but try to stay impartial, not an easy thing to do I know.

Riverwalk Fri 02-Sep-16 14:12:20

No, you should keep your mouth shut.

It sounds like they're attempting to repair their marriage and as they have two young children you and DH should be supportive of this.

obieone Fri 02-Sep-16 15:24:35

I am a poster who normally says say something.
But not this time. Agree with the others, keep out.

Ana Fri 02-Sep-16 15:30:24

If you speak your mind you risk alienating your DIL and possibly your son, and it may jeopardise your relationship with your grandchildren.

I know it must be tempting to side with your son, but as others have said, you've only been told one side of the story and it would be much wiser to keep out of their marriage problems.

HildaW Fri 02-Sep-16 15:38:05

gillyknits.....sounds a minefield to me. You seem to know a lot about a very complicated situation - perhaps too much. I do think that sometimes parents should be the last to know about problems within their grown-up childrens' lives.
My Mum worked on the 'ignorance is bliss' rule and it served her well.
Seriously you can really only be a good listener if and when someone feels the need to off load their troubles and even then you must bear in mind that there are two sides to every story and even the person telling it can get their emotions and perceptions confused. Hearsay and second hand accounts are very dangerous.
Be a good shoulder to cry on, listen and love but only actually step in when asked specifically with such things as a bit of emergency child care if they need time alone.
Once something has been said in the heat of the moment it can never be unsaid.

HildaW Fri 02-Sep-16 15:42:52

P.S. its very telling to me that you headed your OP with 'Cruel and selfish DL'. You do not mince your words and she will have known for sometime you have a very low opinion of her so its especially important you let them sort this out themselves as I suspect she holds a similarly low opinion of you. I hate to sound so blunt but having been through the mill myself I do know what its like.

Mildred Fri 02-Sep-16 15:48:35

I think the same, wise advice given please think of your grandchildren they will need you if their parents' marriage is in trouble. If their parents do part it will be difficult for them to understand and you need to be there to provide stability in their lives.

Christinefrance Fri 02-Sep-16 15:48:57

Yes it's a minefield, anything you say is likely to come back and bite you at some point. You need to let your son know you will support him and the children whatever happens. Other than that bite your tongue.

BlueBelle Fri 02-Sep-16 16:07:54

Keep very quiet Gillyknits you do seem to have a preconceived idea and it sounds quite black and white sons good, daughter in law is bad, you may well be right but it's definitely for them and them only to sort out and really it's not that useful for your son to be telling you all this it would be a lot better if he talked to a mate if he needs to get things off his chest. It's natural for a mum and dad to feel protective of their child but you only get a one sided view so it's unfair on you all. Keep well away from it all and of course if the break up happens you will be there for your son and grandkids if it doesn't happen it will be hard but treat them as normal when you visit

Penstemmon Fri 02-Sep-16 16:53:44

Say is not your marriage! If it all smooths over and they build their relationship again you do not want to be the one who has taken a'side'! Be as neutral as you can be and be on stand by to either support the re-established partnership or your son if it does go pear shaped! I always advise trying couples can help!

annodomini Fri 02-Sep-16 17:18:12

I fully agree with Bluebelle. I wouldn't encourage either of my DSs to come crying to me about the cracks in a relationship. In fact I would tell him to go and sort it out or see a counsellor. You do have a very jaundiced view of your DiL. Maybe she just isn't your type of person and is going through a phase which many of us have probably gone through - previously independent and enterprising young women who find themselves bogged down in domesticity and long to spread their wings, no matter how much they love their children and partners.

gillyknits Fri 02-Sep-16 17:29:37

Thanks for the advice. I should perhaps add that this isn't the first time this has happened and we kept quiet also it isn't just a one-sided view as we have actually witnessed DL saying things to DS.and she has complained to us about him. Her attitude to us is that we are useful for child care and that's all.

Anya Fri 02-Sep-16 17:38:12

That alters nothing, the advice still stands.

MamaCaz Fri 02-Sep-16 17:41:48

I would suggest that the safest thing to do, even if asked directly for your opinion, is to stick to something along the lines of a heartfelt "I will support you whatever you decide to do".