The relationship between in-laws, sons- and mothers-in-law, in particular, have been a subject for jokes and ironic stories for quite a while. In the modern world, the older generation often prefers not to interfere in their adult children's lives. However, there are still situations where one of the partners' mothers happens to be overly-controlling, aren't there?
In May 2019, one Reddit user shared his problem: his mother-in-law has absolutely no respect for the privacy of their family life and his wife can't go against her mother. Knowing that the woman is afraid of spiders, he considered buying a... tarantula. After getting the green light from his wife, he got the exotic pet.
You’re 100% justified. It will strengthen the marriage since her mother isn’t breathing down your neck 24/7.
She definitely knows but won’t say it out loud. Smart wife. Also I understand her, my husband’s parents can be very very present (father in law is on week 2 of a 3 day stay with us) and my husband would never dream of saying anything and I’ve just learnt to get use to it. However, I’m lucky, I like them - it’s just difficult for privacy.
Yeah, wife knows. Doesn't want to acknowledge it, that's all.
Modern problem require modern solutions...
NTA but you gotta give that little guy the life spiders dream of
A user of a different website, Winnie, has asked for advice on a similar problem. While she was pregnant, she and her husband didn't want to tell about it to other people, but her mother-in-law kept posting updates about her state on social media. Here's what other users think about it.
Maybe have a heart to heart with her in person and ask her to take it down and that she can re post when the timing is right.
Commiserate. My MIL spilled our baby's sex on Facebook the morning before our reveal party.
Stop sharing information with her.
Tell her she’ll never see your kid if she doesn’t stop immediately.
Comment how your feeling on the post. Just make sure your comment is from the heart.
People don't usually want to acknowledge that their relationship with their partner's parents is turning toxic. Nonetheless, you shouldn't just let it slide if they:
- turn you and your partner against each other;
- don't respect your boundaries;
- interfere in making decisions you and your partner should be making;
- make you feel bad;
- ignore or downplay you and your opinion;
- treat you like a child;
- gossip about you behind your back.
Here are a few effective tips to help you set the boundaries in the relationship.
- Try to put the stereotypes aside and think positively, as not all mothers-in-law are monsters.
- Make your partner an ally.
- Remember that you may one day be someone else's mother/father-in-law.
- Don't compete with them: love for parents is different from love for one's partner.
- Set the rules: visiting schedule, forbidden or uncomfortable topics, etc.
- Don't get in their way of bonding with their grandkids, rather give their energy the right direction.
- Sometimes, engage in activities your relatives like: this will mean something to them.
The hero of the tarantula story didn't mind his mother-in-law communicating with her daughter and grandkids, but the years of the woman's interference in their life made him look for other alternatives to solving the problem. Do you have your own ways of protecting your privacy?
The material in this article is for informational purposes only and does not replace the advice of a certified specialist.