For whatever reason, some mothers-in-law firmly believe they should have an equal part in their children's marriages. But no, that is literally never the case! That's something these MIL's did not learn.
People on Quora share the meanest thing their mother-in-law ever did to them. Content has been edited for clarity.
"My husband is from Romania, and his mother came to live with us for a year while waiting for her green card; the plan was she would then spend six months a year with us in America and six months a year in Romania.
No matter what I did, this woman hated me on sight. She said the most awful things to me, like how I was too young, too pretty to be with her son for anything other than his money. She would do things like go through my purse when I wasn’t looking and throw out my $40 Chanel lipstick. One of the most hurtful things she would do was turn around the pictures I had in the house of my mom, who died at age 34 when I was 12. She pitted my husband against me- she made it out like I was setting her up and lying about it.
The final straw came when I came home from a long, stressful day at work. I sat down at the kitchen table to go through the mail. Over the course of the 10 months she was with us by then, downstairs became 'her domain.' I would retreat immediately upstairs to our bedroom and watch TV or read until my husband came home. She made him dinner every night (which I wasn’t allowed to eat with them). He would sit with her and have dinner and eventually come upstairs to greet me. When she went to bed, we were free to go downstairs and watch TV, etc.
She was most unhappy that I had the nerve to sit at 'her' kitchen table. She picked up my sunglasses from where they were on the table and threw them against the wall; then she started berating me in Romanian. I ignored her and continued going through the mail, which infuriated her. She stood over me and continued yelling.
My dog, a little Yorkipoo who weighs all of eight pounds, was very upset about this. We went through a lot together during my previous marriage, and she was still very sensitive to fighting or yelling of any kind. She stood next to my feet and started barking. As I reached down to calm her, my mother-in-law kicked her. Right in the face. My dog yelped and I could hear her teeth crack together.
I stood up so fast I knocked over the chair. I grabbed my dog and my purse and left in my car. I called my husband at work- slightly hysterical, I will admit.
I told him, 'This is it. I am going to a hotel. Either she goes, or I go.'
She flew home to Romania three days later. I can handle a bully but I cannot handle abuse of my dog, and my husband couldn’t either.
When it came time for her to have to return to the US due to her green card, I absolutely refused. Her green card was invalidated because she stayed outside the US for too long. I don’t know if we will try to sponsor her again in the future but it hasn’t come up in discussion lately."
"I was married with two children, in-laws living with us. In 2008, I experienced pain in my stomach. I had a feeling I was pregnant, but it was not good. However, I needed to know what was going on so I could bear the pain.
My then-husband took me to the doctor to have my blood work and urine checked. My urine showed no sign of pregnancy, but the blood work showed I was pregnant. I had to go to the hospital for further tests. Results confirmed that it was an ectopic pregnancy. My ovary was providing a home for this fetus.
The pain was pretty unbearable, but I did not want to do any harm to this child. It turns out I had no choice and was given a shot of chemotherapy. It was supposed to kill the cells that were feeding the fetus so it would just stop developing.
Fast-forward a week later, everyone was out and I was home alone. I was in the most unbearable amount of pain and knew it was related to my pregnancy.
I was advised by my then-husband to take an ambulance because he wouldn't be home for a half-hour to take me. Once the ambulance arrived and I was leaving, my then mother-in-law and husband arrived.
Once I got to the hospital, I was told that the fetus had grown to a point that my right fallopian tube had ruptured; there was internal bleeding causing the pain. I was told by a nurse that my belly would no longer be flat and they would pump me with gas to perform laparoscopic surgery and burn off the end of my tube and tie it up.
Once the surgery had been completed, I was advised to take two weeks of bed rest before returning to work. I recovered fairly quickly after my pregnancies, so didn't anticipate I would need two weeks.
My then-husband took zero time off work and my then mother-in-law was watching my children but rarely brought them into the bedroom to see mommy. I remember one time that she did, they jumped all over the bed and she was telling them to stop. I actually didn't mind because if it bothered me, I would tell them at that time.
When she took the kids out of the room she told me to stop feeling sorry for myself because she had her tubes tied. Clearly, she was resentful for her situation but taking her anger out on me wasn't going to resolve her issues.
Now my children are with their father and his parents…while my ex loves his mother, they do not teach my children to love me. Double standards and hypocritical."
"My husband’s grandmother raised him after he was abandoned by his mother at 11 years old. Anyway, everything was fine between her and me until she found out that we had gone to the Justice of the Peace one afternoon and got married. We had been living together for several months, but he was going to be deployed and wanted to make sure that we were all taken care of. She made my life a nightmare while he was away! Constantly belittling me in front of my son and my new stepchildren (from his previous marriage). Complained about my cooking, cleaning, even how I did the dishes. Mind you, this is coming from a woman who left food out all over the house, never washed her hands, and used a leaf blower to blow trash from her room out into the kitchen for me to clean up!
One day, I received an emergency message from my husband’s command saying that he had had a heart attack and was being sent to Singapore for treatment. I was beside myself with worry! However, my grandmother-in-law's niece had invited us to her house that very same weekend. I wanted to stay home by the phone in case there was more news, but she threw a fit. She said I was being selfish and besides, no one could love my husband more than she did and she wanted to go. I was doing the driving, so without me, she couldn’t go. I borrowed my daughter’s cell phone and left the number with everyone that could possibly need it and left. It stormed the whole way there. My stepson was a brat the whole time, and I just wanted to be home. While my GMIL (grandmother-in-law) ignored me, her niece and husband were more than cordial, but that weekend couldn’t end soon enough. My husband came home a week later to recover.
She was a mean, spiteful old woman until the day she died. I was her sole caregiver for seven years, three of them with her completely bedridden. Never a kind word. Never a thank-you. Nothing."
"I had a terrible pregnancy that ended with me having my son a month and a half early. I had an emergency c section. It was a terrifying experience; I had to be put completely out because I was so scared, and I couldn’t stop shaking. When I came to, a nurse was pulling an X-ray pad off of me. I was really confused, and I was told my baby boy was doing fine and I had pneumonia.
I spent almost a week in the hospital recovering. My son was in the neonatal intensive care in an isolette. I was told my son would be there for at least another 4 weeks.
On Friday, my husband came to visit me. He was excited that his hockey team was to play the championship game on Sunday. That’s when I told him the doctor had come to see me and let me know I would be released on Sunday.
We ended up having a huge argument. I didn’t think I was being unreasonable, expecting my husband to take me home from the hospital. I knew it was going to be really hard leaving my baby at the hospital when I went home and I needed support. My husband told me I was a selfish brat.
The next day, in trooped my husband, father-in-law, and mother-in-law. The men quickly excused themselves to go get coffee, leaving me alone with my mother-in-law. As soon as they left she started on me about this stupid hockey game. I should also point out this was a 'fun' league, nothing serious. She went on to tell me how hard my pregnancy and the birth of our child was on her son, and that he needed something for him. She told me everyone focuses on the mother and the father is on the sideline. She told me not to be selfish, and to give him this little thing that was so important. She spent the better part of an hour attempting to convince me.
Quite a while later, my husband and father-in-law came back in discussing this stupid frigging hockey game. I don’t know if I’ve ever been that angry in my whole life. The three of them sat there talking about it while I sit in the bed getting angrier by the second, I was on the verge of having a flip out. They were talking around me like I wasn’t even in the room.
Thankfully, my mom and my sister showed up. The room was crowded so my in-laws and husband decided to leave. Good riddance!
I told my mother what had just happened and she was furious! She told me not to worry, and she and my stepdad would be happy to take me home.
Later in the evening, my husband came back to let me know he would in fact be playing hockey the next day. He told me again that I was being selfish, and that his mother agreed with him and said he should do what was right for him regardless of how I felt.
My mother-in-law justified my husband's terrible behavior over and over, but this is the one that hurt the most."
"When my husband and I first got together, I had a lot of issues with my mother-in-law.
One incident I won’t ever forget was when we were moving back to Houston from San Marcos. We were basically broke at the time, only having enough to pay for the moving truck back to Houston and maybe $100 leftover for food for the week. We packed and loaded and unloaded everything by ourselves, with no help from anyone but my brother who came to help with the bigger items.
During that time, one of his sisters (all his siblings live with his mother) wanted to move out and in with us. Mind you, I was working with an apartment management company so I was able to get a three or two-bedroom apartment. Well, she told us the day before the move she wanted to move in with us, so I called around to all the properties to find us a three-bedroom. I found one and finalized it for move-in.
We found out that night she hadn’t told her mother about wanting to move yet, so we told her she needed to if she wanted to move in with us because it was not up to us.
She told her mother and her mother told her it was fine, but she couldn’t take anything with her but her body and the clothes on her back. She needed to leave all her clothes, bed, electronics, and belongings at the house. She hoped my husband and I would be able to help provide her with those things, as she’s been raising and paying for everything. Mind you, my sister-in-law had a job at that point and all her paychecks were taken by the mother.
She then proceeded to call my husband and disown him. So I took it upon myself to text her a very respectful message asking why she had to say and do that as her daughter was just trying to be independent (she was 21 at that point). I told her I understood her concerns as a mother but treating her daughter like that was not right. She told me to stop talking to her kids, and this was a family matter and it had nothing to do with me and for me to never contact or speak to her again.
She ended up calling us around seven pm the day of the move (after we were already done) and asked if we needed any help, even though she knew we had been moving since four am that day.
A month later, she came to give us her old couches and she apologized to me saying, 'I know you weren’t going to be the bigger person and apologize to me, but I know that Josh loves you very much and you won’t be going anywhere so we need to get along, next time just don’t go about it like that.'
Since then, I’ve kept my distance from her since this wasn’t the first incident that we’ve had with her. And it makes me sad because I wanted to be close with her and have a relationship with her, but you can’t force that love on anybody."
"When my husband and I got married, I was 33 and he was 34. I had been married before him, for two years, and we had to wait for my divorce and annulment were final before we could marry.
I did not have any kids with my first husband. My new husband had never been married and had no kids either.
We decided not to wait to have kids after the wedding. My life doesn’t usually go smoothly, so I assumed that I might have issues conceiving. Turns out, when we got back from our honeymoon, I was pregnant. I took a pregnancy test, it was positive, so I made an appointment with my gynecologist for a week later. We were floored, and excited.
A few days later, I awoke to my bedsheets drenched in blood. I was freaking out, and my husband took me to the doctor. He called my parents and his own, to say I was bleeding a lot and he was taking me to the doctor. At the doctor’s office, a sonogram confirmed I was miscarrying. The sac was there, but it was not viable. They recommended we go to the hospital and get a D&C, so we did. The day was a haze of pain and sadness.
I awoke from the anesthesia, and my husband took me home. We were home maybe 10 minutes, I was still groggy from the anesthesia when the phone rang. It was my mother-in-law, and she wanted to know what happened and why I had to go to the hospital.
I told her that I’d had a miscarriage. She was quiet for a second, then she started SCREAMING AT ME.
'YOU JUST GOT MARRIED!! YOU SHOULDN'T BE HAVING KIDS YET! KIDS ARE A LOT OF WORK, AND THEY NEVER GO AWAY! DON’T YOU WANT TO LIVE A GOOD LIFE?' she screeched.
I was so stunned and upset, I dropped the phone and my husband picked it up, where he began arguing with her, telling her we didn’t need her permission to start a family and we thought we’d like to have kids before all the grandparents were dead. Keep in mind she was 65-years-old, and my father-in-law was 72. She said she felt too young to be a grandmother. The joke of the century, right? After more yelling by my husband, some of which I don’t remember because of the anesthesia, he hung up and I avoided her for a few weeks. She never apologized for saying that. I was told, 'Oh that’s how she is, just drop it.'"
"I had caught my husband living a double life…while traveling for 'work' (he was self-employed, so his travel was completely self-imposed), he was busy cheating on me and spending what little savings we had accumulated over our 17-year marriage on his selfish escapades.
The last time he spent at our home, I gave birth to our fourth child almost six weeks early while my mother-in-law was visiting. I left the other three children in her care while I went to the hospital. It was my longest labor, and postpartum, I had serious complications that almost took my life. During this time I spent in the hospital alone while my husband was somewhere FaceTiming with his latest girlfriend, my mother-in-law was at my home screaming at my children. She told them I had no business getting myself pregnant with their new sibling and should have been focusing on getting a decent job so I could support them all financially. She told them they had no right being happy about the baby and she hoped I 'learned my lesson' by having a preemie.
All this time, my children were not told anything about the baby’s condition (she was healthy) nor about when I would be coming home. When I finally did come home with the baby three days later, they did not know when she was born, why I spent extra time in the hospital, or I was sent home on the condition I would be on strict bed rest for two weeks. After greeting them, introducing the baby, and telling my then 14-year-old what was going on, my husband rushed the kids out of the room. He told me he had purchased tickets for another trip and would be leaving within a few hours for at least a week. My mother-in-law’s flight back home was two days after this, and she very happily packed her bags and left after waking me up that morning to demand I call her a taxi if I wouldn’t be getting up to drive her to the airport.
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I then told my husband not to bother coming back and haven't spoken to my mother-in-law again. She emailed me a few months later saying, 'I know that you think my son is a bad husband but I don’t want to talk about that. I want to still be friends with you and have a relationship with the children blah blah blah'
That blatant denial of leaving me alone to care for 3 children and a newborn by myself when in the middle of a medical emergency solidified my decision to never waste another word on her."
"My husband passed away October 22, 2019, at 6:10 pm, and what my mother-in-law did was unforgivable.
Bobby had been on and off intubation for weeks. His mother was visiting him every day at this point. She’d decided to blame me for his sickness a couple of years before while he was recovering from a quadruple bypass and they discovered cancer. I was somehow responsible for him being so ill, and so she turned NASTY towards me. When we were both there with him, she was snarky and rude to me, to the point it made him uncomfortable and stressed him. Many times he asked her to not act like that… but she did. So I didn’t want to ruin his visits with her or cause him stress when he was needing to focus on getting better and stronger.
I’d been away from him for a week because I had a respiratory chest cold thing, with a fever - and that’s a huge no-no to come around someone as ill as he was. Because he was intubated, they kept him pretty sedated plus he couldn’t speak on the phone. So, we hadn’t spoken in eight days. On Sunday, the fever broke and I went to visit him. As far as I know, he wasn’t aware I was there, he was heavily sedated that night. Monday, I woke up with a fever back just under 100. I debated going but was scared to put him at risk. That Tuesday morning, he was back off the vent but (according to my mother-in-law) he’d had enough and told them to put a 'Do Not Resuscitate' on him. She said they asked him several times over the course of an hour and he kept true to his request. They then gave him some morphine to relax him and make him comfortable. It still took several more hours after that before he passed away. I got the call at 6:40 pm from the hospital staff when I was about to walk out the door to come see him. She couldn’t even be bothered to tell me herself.
All that time she was there with him and never called to tell me what was going on so I could come and see him one last time or say goodbye."
"The meanest thing my MIL did to me was making sure I ate only plain rice during a huge part of my pregnancy. Yes, just plain boiled rice for lunch and dinner in the first two trimesters of my pregnancy.
I had a high-risk pregnancy and was advised complete bed-rest. I was only allowed to move to go to the washroom and visit the doctor. Otherwise, I was a beached whale. My husband wasn’t comfortable with me being alone in the house while he was at work, so he asked his mom to move in for a few months. And those months were horrible. The only respite I had was when my parents were able to visit from time to time, especially in the last trimester.
So everything was hunky-dory in front of my husband, but the moment he left, my mother-in-law would be a completely different person. She wouldn’t come out of her room and would be on her phone. She wouldn’t talk to me. She did everything she was NOT supposed to do while 'taking care' of me.
I think she agreed to move in to show the world she was such a nice lady because she’s moved in to help poor me!
The first few times when I had to eat plain rice for lunch and dinner, she gave the excuse she wasn’t aware of what made me sick and what didn’t. Because of my unfortunate 'delicate' pregnancy, my morning sickness was more visible, and she didn’t know how to handle it. She usually cried on her son’s shoulder while blubbering this excuse, while I was the one eating plain rice and puking out my guts every day.
By month four, my husband finally woke up from her spell, and let her go back to her own home. My parents were back, and I finally managed to eat right. I had multiple hospital stays due to this bad diet, and that’s a nightmare I’ll never forget.
And then, unfortunately, by month six, my parents had to leave again and my mother-in-law was back. She back to her old tricks, and I was back on the plain rice therapy.
I never want to feel so helpless like the way I felt during those times. I couldn’t fend for myself, and my husband couldn’t see how nasty my mother-in-law was (still is). I had cravings and I couldn’t do anything about it because I didn’t want the stress of seeing her make a show out of it.
Now I’m just glad it’s all over."
"While I was still pregnant with my youngest, my mother-in-law's husband tested positive for the flu. My twins were born at 22 weeks and, while they were thriving, they had weaker lungs and immune systems. So we asked her NOT to come around me (still pregnant) and them if she had been around him. LITERALLY, 24 hours later, she comes into my house, loves on BOTH the twins AND hugs me, then mentions her FLU-RIDDEN husband is waiting IN HER CAR. We were struggling financially at that point in time, and she had brought 'groceries' (read: all stuff that had been sitting in the back of her cabinet for God knows how long and ended up getting thrown away—stale bread, expired cans), so I didn’t say anything. Then, about a week later, we had my stepdaughter for the weekend. They stopped by (unannounced) right after my husband told my stepdaughter he was going to take her outside. But since they showed up, we wanted her to spend some time with them. She, being an impatient seven-year-old on the Spectrum, kept asking to go outside and play. I GENTLY told her to stop asking and to spend time with her grandmother, then told her if she kept asking, she wasn’t going to get to go outside. She asked again, so I told her no, she couldn’t go outside at all. That’s all that happened.
Fast-forward another week to when I gave birth. I had a c-section. I came out of surgery, and my brother-in-law was there. My baby girl had some blood sugar issues, so she ended up having to go to the nursery that night and got put on IV sugars. My mother-in-law called my husband the next morning and said her, her husband, AND my other brother-in-law were all coming up there so she could hold my baby. We told her no because of the IV (plus I didn’t want all those people there). My baby got her IV pulled the next morning, and we didn’t discharge until later in the day the following day, and she knew all that. So, she could have come any time in those last two days and held her with no issues, but she didn’t. The day after we discharged, we took the baby to a doctor’s appointment, then stopped by a friend’s house. Well of course, that friend’s mother held my baby for TWO SECONDS, took a picture, and posted it on Facebook. Didn’t even realize it had happened until my mother-in-law started pitching a fit about it. Instead of being an adult and talking to ME, she ran to her mother and told her all kinds of lies. Her mother is bipolar schizophrenic, so I started getting threatening text messages. Then, my mother-in-law said she was going to drive all over our town to find my stepdaughter and give my stepdaughter her Christmas presents, but she’s taking the twins’ and my youngest’s presents back.
The next month, she kisses up to my stepdaughter’s mother by giving her all kinds of money, then tells her that I was mistreating my stepdaughter the day they showed up unannounced (even though I was trying to get my stepdaughter to spend time WITH HER). So now we haven’t seen my stepdaughter since Christmas, despite a court order, and I just had to threaten to call the cops on my mother-in-law because she was driving up and down my road rubbing it in mine and my husband’s faces that she had my stepdaughter. All because I won’t let her run my life."