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Disrespectful son in law

(94 Posts)
Fran3325 Sun 30-Apr-23 19:34:36

Since my husband died 17 months ago I’ve found that my son in law (and my son and daughter to a lesser extent) treats me like a useless and thick elderly person. e.g making fun of me being a little deaf (though I’ve had a responsible and demanding job on the past). I’m 74. Am I being too sensitive or should I say something to him?

CanadianGran Sun 30-Apr-23 20:02:06

Yes, have a word. Try not to snap at him, just remind him you are capable. Practice using 'the look' to set him straight!

aggie Sun 30-Apr-23 20:03:16

Get a hearing aid ,

Primrose53 Sun 30-Apr-23 20:15:45

aww that sounds horrible Fran.

If I Were in that position I would tell them straight that their comments are very upsetting.

VioletSky Sun 30-Apr-23 20:26:14

I'd just ask them to explain what's funny until they got uncomfortable

NanaDana Sun 30-Apr-23 20:27:46

Tell them how they make you feel, Fran. They may be under the misapprehension that they are being humorous. Put them straight.

Septimia Sun 30-Apr-23 21:29:22

"I might be a bit deaf, but I'm not daft. Show a little more respect, please."

SuzieHi Sun 30-Apr-23 21:39:39

They are being very thoughtless and unkind. Tell them individually how it makes you feel. Hopefully they’ll have the courtesy to apologise.


Grammaretto Sun 30-Apr-23 21:42:23

I am sorry to hear that
There is a shift in the family dynamics, even power, when someone dies especially if your DH was the patriarch.

My DH died 2 years ago and I have also noticed a shift.
Luckily they are kind to me but i am outnumbered so can't turn to DH for support. He wouldn't have allowed any teasing or rudeness to me.
What upsets me is if they quarrel with eachother.
I long for them to love and appreciate their siblings and spouses

Redhead56 Sun 30-Apr-23 21:55:19

I would question why all of a sudden they are disrespectful. Tell them it's hurtful and if they feel the need to insult someone then pick on someone else.
You really don't this in your life you need a supportive family not a critical one.

Redhead56 Sun 30-Apr-23 22:00:43

Sorry I also meant to say you really don't NEED this in your life you need a supportive family not a critical one. Mean what you say don't be a push over.

M0nica Sun 30-Apr-23 22:05:11

Fran3325 is there any reason why you caanot remedy your deafness with a hearing aid.

I m shocked that your own family should make fun of you because of this, but deaf people do have a mountain to climb, so that if you can get hearing aids it is so much better.

One of my friends has had hearing aids in both ears for decades and for years I didn't realise. Her hair covered them and she got them so quickly when she began to develop hearing problems that I never really noticed the change.

crazyH Sun 30-Apr-23 22:05:18

One of my ds.I.l. has always been very disrespectful to me. I used to get quite upset, but recently, I just couldn’t be bothered. She is an only child and very spoiled. But regardless, I am very fair to both of them

Fran3325 Sun 30-Apr-23 22:06:51

I have a hearing aid

Luckygirl3 Sun 30-Apr-23 22:14:21

Others are right - I am aware of a shift in family dynamics since my OH died 3 years ago - but it is in a well-intentioned way. They are concerned for me being alone - and I think they sometimes forget that up until OH died I was responsible for all his care and was basically "in charge" and he was incapacitated.

Is your SIL's teasing good-natured maybe? My family joke a bit if do not hear things - although my DD also wears hearing aids so it is pretty normal for us all.

There are times when I have to say to them - really I'm OK - I haven't changed - my life circumstances have, but I am still me! Could you find some way to make that point to them?

It is hard I know to go from the matriarch to the person who needs the concern of others.

Luckygirl3 Sun 30-Apr-23 22:15:55

Actually I would rephrase that: I do not need the concern of others, but seem to be the object of it - which in some ways is good.

Fran3325 Sun 30-Apr-23 22:46:09

I like your reply- the joking is maybe good natured and they are all supportive but I feel infantilised/useless at times by their joking. I’ll try and practice ‘the look’! 🤣

Foxygloves Mon 01-May-23 03:58:59

^My DH died 2 years ago and I have also noticed a shift.
Luckily they are kind to me but i am outnumbered so can't turn to DH for support. He wouldn't have allowed any teasing or rudeness to me.
What upsets me is if they quarrel with each other^

My feelings exactly
"Teasing" may be affectionate but you either have to head it off (hearing aids) or call it out.

M0nica Tue 02-May-23 11:10:17

We all say that we do not intend to be burdens on our children abd expect them to look after us in old age, but we also have the face the fact that like it or not, if we have loving children they will worry about us as we get older whether we want them to or not.

My father was a widower for 10 years and lived to be 92, living independently, driving, still active on the committees of three local organisations. He organised his own cleaners and gardeners, he was anything but old and vulnerable. But, for those last ten years My sister and I were conscious that he could at any time need help and were alert the whole time to his welfare, ready to do whatever was needed if he did become vulneraable.

I am conscious that we have reached that stage with our children. We are both 80 this year, DH had a heart attack and bypass surgery, 3 years ago. I have a few minor health problems, but nothing that limits my life in any way. Yet I can tell from our DC's ractions to any minor problem that they have now reached the 'watchful' stage in their lives. Keeping an eye open for signs that we are having any difficulties in everyday life. There is nothing we can do about it, anymore than there was anything my father could do about it in the same situation.

Aldom Tue 02-May-23 11:20:42

So true MOnica re your post 11.10.

Dickens Tue 02-May-23 12:15:37

Fix them with a stare and remind them...

As you are now, so once was I
As I am now, so you will be

sodapop Tue 02-May-23 12:56:30

I'll remember that Dickens so true and succinctly put.

Dickens Tue 02-May-23 13:44:08


I'll remember that Dickens so true and succinctly put.

M0nica Tue 02-May-23 14:36:44

I find the idea of needing a husband/partner to keep AC under control and stop them disrespecting you, disconcerting and rather odd.

In the unlikely case of my AC treating me in an unacceptable way, I am more than capable of putting them in their place and insisting they treat me with respect, whether my DH is around or not.

HousePlantQueen Tue 02-May-23 14:43:44

I have been known to ask, in a semi-joking manner 'Now, you wouldn't be patronising me, would you?' This usually works.