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Re: In-Laws!
May 14, 2007
[QUOTE=Nikki1963;2981831]His response was, "Frig (nicer version)! Are you kidding me? What the frig are they doing here?" I told him to chill out before we walked over to their car. I figured I'm beat, I want to get done for the day, better to run into them here than @ the house. (BTW: This store is about 15 minutes from us, and 45 from them.)

He proceeded to avoid them as we shopped. I told him to go over with me & say goodbye. Then it was, "When are you going to be home? WHAT? Well, we can't hang around that long. Can't you shop later?" He said no, and they started the calls as soon as we got home.

However, on more than one occassion, I have witnessed him complain about them & proceed to tell them the opposite.[/QUOTE]

I know it's easy to take the 20/20 hindsight or Monday-morning quarterbaking stance, but you both need to sit down and evaluate what could have been done in this situation -- for the simple reason of how to deal with this better in the future. Maybe he needs to have a private discussion with his parents about boundaries. Then when things like this happen, he'll have something to refer them to.

[QUOTE=Nikki1963;2981831]Regarding setting aside space for their storage: Why do I have to at all? I wouldn't do it for anyone else, AND it's more reason for them to drop by. They've got their entire house full of their flea market things. The only clear space is their bed, the kitchen, and the living room. The two bedrooms & bathrooms are full. Their shed is full. Under their trailer is full. If I allot them a little, it'll mean more.

Sorry, I owe them nothing more than to love their son, treat him well, give them love, a smile on my face, graciousness, and an invitation here & there.[/QUOTE]

You certainly don't [B]have[/B] to do anything. Marriage is about compromise, though. You're expecting your DH and his family to compromise on certain things. This could be an area where you could come to the middle a bit. But you definitely don't have to. I was just trying to point out that asking a family member to house a few of your things isn't all that uncommon. We're doing it right now for both my family, as well as DH's. DH & I have needed this favor from family members in the past in between moves and during remodeling. There are certain things I absolutely cannot compromise on with my FIL. Keeping a drill press in the garage is something I can accept.

[QUOTE=Nikki1963;2981831]Think of it this way: Someone comes over or calls you a few times a day. It's almost never pleasant. You're put on the defense... criticized. Then ONE DAY you are not home. They wonder why you never call... why you haven't returned their call... why you haven't invited them over. AND they know it's a stressful time for you to begin with. Plus, they never do a thing to help / encourage you. It's just dig after dig after dig.

What would you want to do for them, or give them? Probably, not much.

Am I obligated to them, simply because I married their son? Sorry again... but I don't think I am.

I love my husband. Absolutely adore him.

What I don't understand is: Why did they call him a "*******", a "loser", and say "he's getting fat again" before we got this house, and rarely set foot in our apartment, now they want to be with us on the weekends?

I'm wondering if he may be speaking differently with them when I'm not around because he's feeling 'accepted' now.

I hope not, because he is the most perfect, acceptable person I've known next to my grandpop.[/QUOTE]

Hey, you're preaching to the choir here. While I'm blessed with a lot of DH's family, his father is a real sore spot. He's a bigot, a sexist, a racist, a con-man and a cheat. He always shows up unexpected and has actually expected us to put him up for a few months while he figures out his next "gig." He's always trying to unload all of his stuff on us. This week it's a dozen microwaves and high-definition televisions. I'm positive I'm going to see him on some Dateline special about suave men conning little old ladies. He's always got reasons how he gets this stuff, but it just never adds up.

He will not listen to women. He's told me, to my face, in my garage that my place is in the kitchen. After 16 years with my husband, the man cannot even come close to spelling my name correctly -- and he's a robotics engineer by trade. He turns his nose up when I cook him a meal. Usually takes a bite and then asks where the peanut butter, jelly and bread is. I'm a gourmet cook, BTW. He made a complete jerk of himself by using racial slurs at our wedding reception. I have Polish, as well as African-American people that have married into my family. It was just one derrogatory Polish joke after another, mixed with calling African-Americans "boogers." I truly though my wedding was going to end up like a bar brawl with the police being called.

Even with all of this, 16 years of nastiness with this man, he is still my husband's family. DH, thankfully, takes after his mother and doesn't care to spend too much time with his father, but, nevertheless, he does have to visit once in a while. In the beginning, I was flabergasted that I would have to do ANYTHING for this man, but soon I realized that DH & I are a team, and we needed to tackle this together. I needed to hear where he was coming from, and DH needed to hear where I was coming from.

We both made some compromises, came up with some game plans for when he shows up unexpected or calls from around the corner saying, "Hey, I'm town," came up with a "codeword" that I generally use when I just can't handle him anymore when we're with him somewhere other than our home. I mean, there are things you both can do. But you both need to see this from the other's perspective and then put your heads together.

As bad as I perceive my FIL, I don't share the childhood memories that DH does about him. Yes, he's turned into a cranky, racist, nasty old man, but he saw DH through a lot of milestones as a child. I needed to understand and accept this. DH, in turn, saw my point of view, and we compromised. That's why I house some of his (stress [I]his[/I], not someone else's) stuff, or make him a meal when he's in town. This is where I came to the table halfway. DH came to the table halfway in a lot of ways, too, such as telling him he can't stay with us when he's in between "gigs," we can't keep his animals and birds, we don't want his strange stuff he picks up, we're right in the middle of something when he calls and wants to come over unexpected -- but, hey, how about coming over for dinner tomorrow night? If he puts up a fight, DH has to get a little firm.

It's worked for us.

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