In-laws can either be great or horrific, but for most of us, it's the latter.
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"When my son was about one, my husband and I decided we wanted to get married. We went to our city hall, which was built about 600 years ago. It is a gorgeous building with ornate paintings and ceilings. I so wanted to have our civil ceremony there. The day we went to sign up for the pre-wedding publications ended up being the best part of getting married.
It all went downhill from there. I only wanted our three best friends and our son to be present at our civil ceremony and have a nice dinner later that evening. He wanted his parents to be present. I wasn’t thrilled at the idea, but I told him fine we could have our respective parents and siblings along with our three best friends. Once he told his family, they were not happy at all with our choice to have a civil ceremony instead of a church wedding. They didn’t want us to have our wedding where we lived as it meant that everyone had to travel there, whereas if we did it in my husband's home time it would be much easier. My parents are also originally from the same town and inherited my grandfather's house, they also vacation there every year because of this. My in-laws pointed out it would be easier and more cost-effective for my parents as well.
I didn’t want a party, a reception with tons of people. I had a lot of family in the US that wouldn’t be able to attend if I had a proper reception in Italy. I wanted to have my civil ceremony with our friends and then have a nice dinner in his hometown and one in the US so no one would feel left out. This was not a good enough solution for my in-laws. They all wanted to be present, including my sister-in-law and her kids and my mother-in-law.
We nearly made it three weeks before our wedding. They asked about preparations. I said there were none because we were just going to have a quiet dinner with his father, my parents, our son, and our friends. My father-in-law said no matter what, he would drive the six hours to our city to be present. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law said it was too expensive for them to attend. I understood this and didn’t mind. I was happy, as I didn’t want anyone there to begin with.
My sister-in-law was angry about my statement that we hadn’t planned anything really and it was going to be a quiet evening. She started shouting it made no sense we weren’t having some big lavish wedding with hundreds of people and a church in their hometown. She said I was being selfish because I knew that her family couldn’t afford to make the trip and pay for hotels, and I was intentionally excluding them. She said I was driving my father-in-law to the poor house because he was supporting us and then had to pay to see us get married on top of it.
She continued her rant saying I should have called his family and asked for permission to move in together with my husband, that I should have asked permission to marry my husband and I should have asked permission to have my son. She said that we should have had the wedding when I got pregnant because of the embarrassment and not after. She said it made no sense that we didn’t want a lavish wedding.
Her whole commentary of permission was bizarre to me. I told her I hadn’t asked my own parents' permission for anything since 18 and I had no intentions of asking her family at 26. I was so done with everything at that point when she brought my son into the conversation I told her to get lost, I told my SO and his family to do whatever the heck they wanted for our wedding and I would just show up on the day if I felt like it.
I did not plan a single thing. I didn’t know what we were going to do and where we were going. I only bought my outfit. That’s it. The day of, my husband, mother, and best friend had planned everything. They tried to do what something they thought I would like. My parents ended up paying for everything, which is not at all what I wanted.
It was a civil ceremony in his town with 40/50 people. A buffet lunch at a restaurant right next door to my parent's house where we were staying while they're on vacation with our son. They did this so if I felt like going home it wasn’t a big deal I literally had to walk 10 feet to the front door.
I hated it. I tried to be happy and plastered a fake smile, but my mother did flowers, a photographer, rice, and other typical wedding nonsense that I didn’t want. I definitely didn’t want 50 people there either, especially when my ideal wedding was originally eight people."
"My in-laws found out my husband's life insurance policy through his company was a very high amount. They asked my husband why it’s so much and the need to pay for it. My husband explained it doesn’t cost him much, and if something ever happened to us, my three kids’ guardians would need it to support them. My father-in-law then asked what would happen with the money if only he died and not me. He said I would use it to help raise and take care of our kids, and take care of myself too.
Then my father-in-law said, 'Well, how do we know what she’ll do with the money? She might spend it foolishly.'
Mind you, I was sitting right there as he said this. Before I could speak, my husband went off on his father (and mother, since she agreed with him).
I asked my father-in-law if he thought I was going to take a trip around the world with the money. I have three boys to take care of, and I’ve been a housewife for 15 years. Any job I get now would only give me a salary of about 25k. And that’s if I could work with my health issues. He didn’t reply nor look at me. The conversation ended.
The next day, my father-in-law said to me: 'You made him get this policy, right? I’m sure it wasn’t his idea.'
What? First, he’s always had life insurance, even the first four years we were married and didn’t have any kids. Second, this isn’t a separate policy either. It’s whatever his work provides. I told him this and again he walked away.
At dinner that night, my father-in-law brought it up again. I decided to call my husband’s sister right then. I put the call on speaker and asked her if her husband has any life insurance for her and/or their four kids. She said of course they did. I then told my father-in-law once he gets his daughter to remove their insurance, then we’ll consider doing the same (I knew this would never happen).
Over the years, I’ve found out my in-laws are the ones who want to be the beneficiaries of the policy. So they have money to live off of if my husband were to pass away (my husband pays them a very generous amount of money each month, pays for their vacations/trips, and buys them many things, like clothes, furniture, perfumes, and I’ve never said a word). They even say they’ll give me money from the policy monthly or randomly to help take care of the boys. They should let me have the entire amount plus help me separately since the boys are their blood. Giving me money even monthly from the policy is not helping me out. You’re just giving me money that was already ours, to begin with!"
"My wife (I'll call her 'Jane') and I have been married for a decade but been together for almost two decades. My wife has never had a good relationship with her mother and stepfather due to an abusive childhood. When my wife and I first started dating, she had only minimal contact with her mother.
When there was contact with her parents, I noticed there tended to be periods of depression afterward for my wife.
Very early in our relationship, my wife ended up having to go to the hospital. She was admitted for an illness and was later discharged after a couple of days. The hospital she was in happened to be the same hospital where her mother worked.
While in the emergency room waiting to complete the admissions' paperwork, I called my wife's mother to tell her Jane was in the hospital. We spoke for about 15 minutes, then hung up.
About a month later, my wife and her mother got into an argument. My wife brought up her mother didn't even care enough to stop into her hospital room to check up on her. Her mother claimed she was unaware Jane had been hospitalized and denied I called her. This was my final straw. If there had been any doubt about what my wife had told me of her abuse (and there never was any doubt in my mind), it would have been erased immediately. I saw firsthand how manipulative her mother is and how her mother lied about me.
We decided then and there to cut off all communication with her parents. I made sure to let my wife know it was her decision to make but I would back her 100%.
Just last year, her mother tried to contact my wife by sending a letter with a few photographs and trinkets her mother thought belonged to my wife (the majority of what was sent belonged to my wife's sister). My wife returned the items by mail with a note telling her mother to cease further contact.
My wife's siblings have sided with the parents. My wife reconnected with her biological father and they have a good relationship and we visit with him on occasion.
As for me, even if my wife and her mother reconnect one day, I'll never trust her mother again."
"I come from a very close-knit family and had a very close relationship with my grandmother, who at 98 was in failing health and had been moved into a hospice, and I had just received contact from my family she was fading quickly and to try to get a flight home ASAP.
My husband organized a flight for me for the next morning and during that day, he told me our neighbour (not family) had dropped dead suddenly.
That evening, my mother-in-law came into our house to speak to me and I mistakenly thought she was going to see if I was ok and dealing with everything. Instead, she demanded I accompany her next door to pay my respects to the widow and sit with her and the rest of the mourners (I have never met this woman in my life). I politely declined, saying I didn’t feel up to it and I would on my return.
I flew home, made it just in time, within hours of her passing, and stayed until the funeral. During this time, no phone calls, no text messages of condolence, nothing from my husband's parents or siblings. The only communication was a brief text message from my father-in-law to my dad saying 'sending condolences,' and it wasn’t even his mother!
Upon my return, the morning I arrived back home, my mother-in-law rushes into my house and yells from the doorway, 'Go to the neighbour's house and pay your respects.'
I thought to myself, this is the height of cruelty. She hasn’t said a word to me, her daughter-in-law about my loss but is worried she will lose face by me not showing up to the neighbours for her acquaintances to see.
So I said loudly and firmly, 'No!'
She slammed the door and leaves.
I told my husband I was not going to go to the neighbors until she said something acknowledging my grandmother passing to me and he said, 'Go ahead that’s fine.'
This charade went on for almost two weeks. Daily bursting into my house demanding my presence next door, sometimes twice daily and cursing me under her breath in her language when I refused. She has before and since said and done countless other things, but this one stands out as the most hurtful, narcissistic and callous example."
"My husband at the time and I drove several hours to have a Thanksgiving dinner with his family: sister, aunts/uncles/mom, etc. I made an old family favorite with is a sweetened dessert made with cranberries and other ingredients. They formed an assembly line for serving ourselves with everyone’s delicious foods. I heard his mother answer someone’s question about what the dish was. She insisted it was a bitter, cranberry relish. Then the discussion turned to awful cranberry dishes and no one like them. I tried interjecting, but with no success.
At another famous family function, his mother said to me about my daughter, 'There’s nothing wrong with disciplining her - you know time out or restriction, you know.'
I hadn’t a clue what she was talking about, as I frequently used time out, restriction as discipline tools. I did know my husband was insanely jealous of my daughter and did not like her being around. So, I asked her what she was referring to and she just gave me a look of complete astonishment, as if someone had just cut her fingers off or something. To this day, I still have no idea what she was talking about, yet I knew my husband had filled her with nonsense about my daughter since he was insanely jealous of her. Needless to say, that marriage did not last beyond five years.
My daughter still tells me things that I hadn’t a clue about - such as how he would ridicule her about being 15 pounds overweight, and how he’d drive right past her on a very hot day as she walked the one and a half miles from the school bus home, through a dirt, country road. He was a piece of work, and getting to know his mother, I had a strong suspicion as to why. He talked about her with disdain, saying she would hit him on the head and ridicule him and men, in general. After five years of trying to work with this, I finally did exactly what he used to yell at me to 'Get the heck out of my life.'
Oddly, he was surprised when I left - and begged me to stay!
I’ve never regretted leaving, and neither has my daughter."
"I was in my first serious relationship at 18 years old and was under the impression his family was fond of me. We had only been dating for a few months, but had been friends for years. I hung out at their house often, and had even been invited for dinner a few times.
One day while he was at work, his mom and I were having a pleasant conversation, until I mentioned we had discussed getting married someday. As soon as I said that, I found out just how she really felt about me.
She instantly started screaming that her son would never marry a brat like me, and she was disgusted with the fact he would ever even date me. She called me everything but my name, and at one point I really thought she might hit me. I was so stunned all I could do was cry. I didn't say a word back to her.
Fast-forward six months and I ended up pregnant with our only child. She was roughly nine months old when we got married. Throughout all of this, I dealt with A LOT of nonsense from both of his parents, until I eventually divorced my husband a few years later."
"On Mother’s Day two years ago, I planned a brunch for all the women in my family and kicked my hubby out for the day. It was meant to be filled with fun and of course appreciation for the mamas. My husband went to spend the day with his dad, with who he decided to repair a relationship with since he was a father himself. His father had a history of drinking, but swore he was now sober. When my husband got there, his father was hammered, and halfway through hanging out he attacked him with a knife! Stabbed him and was chasing him around the house. My husband successfully left and headed straight to the hospital.
While I was wrapping up my brunch, considering it was now ruined since I had a husband in the hospital, his dad showed up to our house looking for him and was literally trashed, bloody, and was screaming I am a brat, he hated me, I’m a nightmare, it was a mess. Everyone knew he was a heavy drinker so it wasn’t exactly surprising but he ruined my brunch and of course, absolutely broke my husbands' heart because he was looking forward to the idea of meeting his dad as a sober man and building a relationship as two dads. He still has a huge scar as well."
"When I was pregnant with my first child, I was still living with my family. My husband and I had already purchased a house, which would be ready in a couple of years.
I was still working at that point in time. My mom was more than happy to take care of her first grandchild while my husband and I went to work. Then my husband insisted the two grandmas take turns looking after our child so it would be fair.
I was a bit hesitant to let my mother-in-law take care of our child. The last baby my mother-in-law took care of was my husband who is a second child vs my mom who has been taking care of babies since I was born. I’ve got three younger brothers and in-between child number three and four, she’s taken care of my aunt’s children round the clock. And after having child number four, she babysat my other aunt’s children. My mother-in-law is also only older than my mom by about 5 years. Yet, she has old-fashioned views.
Anyway, I give in and on alternate weeks, the baby was being taken care of by both grandmas.
Over the months, my baby reached her milestones. At around eight months she learned to stand. She still needed support. It was around this time I began to notice a change. My baby loves baths. She’d splash around and whatnot. After fetching her from my mother-in-law, my mom says the baby doesn’t seem to enjoy her baths. Especially when she attempts to rinse her hair with the showerhead. The baby has never had issues with the showerhead raining on her. She’d grab onto my mom’s hand and scream. Not wanting water to get on her head and face. We figured something must have happened at my mother-in-law's house..
Then one day, my husband offhandedly said mother-in-law bathes with cold water. I went 'What?'
I tell him you’re not supposed to bathe babies with cold water. Husband easily gets offended when I say mother-in-law WAs in the wrong. I’d need proof to back up my claim. He says I should chill out and his mother knows what she’s doing. He continues by saying that in the olden day's village kids bathe in cold water from the river. I say that those are bigger kids that bathe in the cold river.
'Well where do they get warm water for babies?' he asked.
'You boil the water,' I said.
He fell silent.
Then it was MIL’s turn to watch the baby. She started to give the baby her evening bath and there I saw it. I watched as MIL scooped water from the bucket which was filled direct from the pipes.
To not directly offend her, I told my husband to tell his mom not to do it anymore. After that baby slowly started to enjoy her baths again."
"My sister-in-law started romantically, and creepily, stalking my uncle. Gross, right? She was following him home and sitting outside his house, sending him text messages asking for him to let her in for just one night of passion, saying she 'knows he wants her' and all sorts of other delusional nonsense. She joined a group at his work and would show up to events even after she had been 'banned.' It got pretty scary since we didn't know how far she might take it.
My brother found out about the stalking, and she responded by threatening to divorce him. He cowherd down and begged her to make things work. She convinced him he was letting our mother ruin their lives, and has been ruining his life since childhood. She forced him to write an email to my mother, letting her know all these things she had done wrong, but none of them were true.
In the midst of all this going down (after the stalking and before the letter), my mom had been paying rent to live in a home they owned, but after my sister-in-law had threatened to kick her out for the third time, she decided to move. She gave my brother 60 days' notice, and he said no problem. That night, my sister-in-law showed up at the house with the cops and tried to have my mom forcibly removed, and told the cops the story. The cops obviously told her they couldn't do anything.
Both my sister-in-law and brother have sent emails to every single employee and manager at both my mother's and uncle's work filled with lies and threats in order to attempt to damage my mom and uncle's reputation. The cops have been called on multiple occasions. It never got violent, but it got pretty aggressive from time to time.
The worst of it all, though... my mother and their daughter (my niece) had an extremely close relationship. Now they've cut my mom off from having any communication with her grandchildren. My mom knows my sister-in-law is crazy, and my brother is either whipped, or just as delusional, but it tears me apart to see my mother crying because she can't see her granddaughter. It tears me apart, even more, to think those poor kids have to grow up in such an insane household."
"It all started with the sister who has a lazy eye deciding she wanted to drive us all to a local mountain. My girlfriend, her mom and dad, and I all hop in. Sister informs us she can't see well and has bad depth perception. Que longest card ride where I am constantly warning her of impending traffic, she isn't in the right lane, and she should really pay attention to the road. Her father this entire time was regaling her with stories, using very animated hand gestures and even going so far as to stick his face in front of his daughters (while she was driving) to illustrate a particularly interesting point in his story.
After driving for a couple of hours, we find out dear sister has no idea where the mountain is! We proceed to bust out phones and google our way out of the situation, wherein we find we are about two hours off course. Yay.
Back on course, a few hours late, and lunchtime was rapidly approaching. My girlfriend and I hop out of the car as we stop and run over to a restaurant to get food, wherein her father announces he wants to take off immediately because he saw a novelty train exhibit sign and we must go see it! We refused, he pouted, then proceeded to be in a bad mood for the remainder of the day for us not humoring his train fetish.
Back in the card, almost to the mountain, when we then realize this wasn't the best planned day and no one knew where they wanted to go when we got there. I offered some suggestions as I'd been there previously, all of which were ignored. We continue driving, but by this point, it was getting late and we'd need to turn around soon if we wanted to get home at a reasonable time. I say this right as the decide they want to take the long way back to our home city (an extra three or four hours drive) and I just put my foot down and say no, we're going back the way we came and we're going now.
On the way home, we almost got hit by a semi truck."