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Difficult in-laws

(23 Posts)
Pintofbest Wed 15-Nov-17 12:54:33

Good afternoon, I'm new to Gransnet and to forums generally but I would very much appreciate advice about a vexing matter that has just cropped up. Our sister-in-law recently sent us a text hinting that she wants to stay with us while she visits her new grandson who lives with our son and daughter-in-law nearby. We are rarely in touch with our in-laws and are not yet ready to open our doors to her and presumably her family when they want to visit the area. We expect that both son and daughter-in-law will browbeat us (a frequent occurrence) if we don't extend an invitation and we don't know how best to respond when they do. Your comments and advice will be welcome.

Eglantine21 Wed 15-Nov-17 12:59:16

Sorry I'm a bit muddled. You mean your daughter in laws parents?

Christinefrance Wed 15-Nov-17 13:03:52

I wondered why she cannot stay with your son and family ?
However you are in a difficult position if she can't, could you limit it to a short stay of say two nights. Failing that send details of local B&B's or hotels to your sister in law.

vampirequeen Wed 15-Nov-17 13:48:27

My in-laws have tried to use our house as free accommodation several times. We tell them it's not feasible due to the size of our house and give them the details of local hotels.

I don't like people staying. My home is my safe space and I want it to stay that way.

Pintofbest Wed 15-Nov-17 14:49:21

Dear Eglantine, you're right, I meant the mother of our daughter-in-law. She rarely visits her daughter and when she does she usually doesn't tell us she's in town. We've never argued with her but it seems we have little in common. When she hinted she might stay with us she made it clear it was because she could save the expense of a hotel.

Pintofbest Wed 15-Nov-17 14:53:09

Dear Christinefrance, our son and daughter-in-law live in a two-bedroom flat but discourage visitors.

M0nica Wed 15-Nov-17 15:13:33

Just ignore the hint. If that is what she wants she should come straight out and ask, then you can express regret and say 'no'. Make up some spurious excuse like you sleep very badly and often use the visitors room, You often get up in the night for the same reason and have a bath, turn the tv on or do something noisy, or you get up very early and do all of the above. You should be able to think of something.

Pintofbest Wed 15-Nov-17 15:21:35

Dear Monica, I agree with you and we have ignored the hint, however we expect a backlash from our daughter-in-law (and son) and I dread the unpleasant scene! I will tell her that it is our home and we will decide who we want to invite and when.

janeainsworth Wed 15-Nov-17 15:29:02

If I’ve got this right, you’re the co-grandmother of this woman you don’t know very well, and for the sake of family harmony may have to maintain a pleasant relationship for the next several years.
If you have space in your house, and provided the visit is going to be a few days and not a few weeks, why not invite her?
If you don’t have space, that’s your excuse.
But if you do, it will be an opportunity to get to know her better and you will appear generous and welcoming.
If you have space and don’t invite her, you risk appearing unfriendly and perhaps setting the scene for grandparent rivalry in the future

janeainsworth Wed 15-Nov-17 15:31:44

I’ve just seen your last post
I will tell her that it is our home and we will decide who we want to invite and when
Good luck with that shock

Eglantine21 Wed 15-Nov-17 15:33:53

Must admit I'd just do it for a few days. But everyone feels differently about their personal space. Invite someone you do like to fill up the house?

M0nica Wed 15-Nov-17 15:37:14

Will your DD and DSiL not accept an excuse about poor sleeping patterns?

I do understand the problems of staying over when one's DC's house is small. When we visit our DS and family we do usually stay with DDiL's mother. We are good friends and get on very well, but when I went up at half term, she was under the weather so I stayed with DS and family, it was a bit of a squash but we managed. DDiL would never even consider pressurising her mother if she could not or would not have us. We have, on occasion stayed in a B&B. when it was not convenient for us to stay.

pintifbest I think your reaction is absolutely right.

paddyann Wed 15-Nov-17 15:45:43

my daughters in laws have an open invitation to stay with us when they travel the 350 miles to visit our GD.The've only stayed once though for a few days and tend to find somewhere a bit nearer to my daughters who is 35 miles from us.Its much nicer to be welcoming and kind to the other GP's as we see the little one much more than thay do.She's really all we have in common but surely your GC is important enough to put your feelings for them aside for a weekend or so

Baggs Wed 15-Nov-17 15:53:31

All you are politely obliged to say is that it's not convenient for you. If anyone asks why it's not convenient they are being rude. It's also rude of them to drop hints.

Not everyone relishes having visitors other than immediate family staying in their house and other people should accept that without making negative judgments. Someone who doesn't find such visits very stressful wouldn't understand but they could try to.

Baggs Wed 15-Nov-17 15:55:38

PS Good luck with the backlash and haranguing! (That's rude too).

M0nica Wed 15-Nov-17 17:20:39

I once asked my MiL whether she could put up my DM and DS for a night. I never did it again. She had never in her life had a visitor staying other than her DS and his family. The visit caused her so much worry and stress we never suggested she do it again. She knew and was fond of both my DM and DS, but had just never entertained visitors before. Our DS's MiL has poor health and we do not stay if she is unwell, which seems to me a common courtesy.

But not all of us are the same. There is no virtue in holding open house, when you enjoy it, nor anything wrong in not receiving visitors if you do not.

vampirequeen Wed 15-Nov-17 17:31:20

Recommend a Travelodge or a Premier Inn.

maryeliza54 Wed 15-Nov-17 17:38:09

Don’t you think you are lucky to live near your dgc? Why not be kind and let her stay this time and see how it goes. If you really cant, I think you should be polite in refusing and not phrase it as you suggest. Do you really want a family row and your dd-in-law being piggy in the middle?

MissAdventure Wed 15-Nov-17 17:47:07

I would let her stay. Its nice to be nice (apparently!)

Norah Thu 16-Nov-17 16:42:44

Though she wants to save the expense to a hotel, you don't need to care about her savings. She is being a bit greedy.

judypark Thu 16-Nov-17 18:14:01

You state that you are not ready to open your doors to her yet. What hoops does she have to jump through to qualify for entry into your home?
Like janeainsworth, I was gobsmacked by that last sentence!
The arrival of a grandchild should be a joy and celebration for both families not a stand off situation.
I would imagine that DIL s mum will want to spend her days with with her DD and new GS so you would not be seeing much of her anyway.
This scenario has the potential to escalate and remember that it is likely that your son will stand by his wife.

wildswan16 Thu 16-Nov-17 18:41:35

So you both are new grandmothers to a new child in your combined family. I think it would be nice on this occasion to have the opportunity to enjoy this time together and maybe get to know each other better. It really does not commit you to having her to stay again if you can't stand each other. She may be hinting, but also may be trying to get to know you.

Coolgran65 Thu 16-Nov-17 19:07:19

I wouldn't say No because of 'what ifs'. I'd give it a go and hope that it went well.

If you then feel that you never want a repeat you can always find a reason. Who knows, if other Gran stays with you she may also feel that it wasn't suitable and may never ask again.

You will at least have made an effort.