Question: Dear Luise, I have being married for more than 5 years now. My husband has a son that is almost 8 years old. He used to have joint custody of him and was trying to get full custody. At the time his ex was making our life miserable. She was causing so much drama plus she was telling his son to hit me and not to listen to me because I wasn’t his mom. Then I become pregnant and things got worse. The problems with his son and ex were bad. At one point my husband decided to just have visitation and his mother got mad at us. Now, we have two beautiful kids, but his mother keeps asking why he doesn’t try to get full custody of his son. This year my mother in law just got out of line. It was Christmas morning and she told my husband that she was feeling bad and very angry because we didn’t have his son with us at the time. His ex agreed to let us see him the next day but my mother in law left Christmas morning. And then she sent us an email saying that she is not going to come to visit us unless his first son is here. And that she doesn’t want anything to do with our other kids. She favors the first grandson over the other grandkids and that hurts our feelings. My kids are to little to know what’s going on so that is good. I don’t care much. But seeing my husband hurts me. We tried several times to talk to my mother in law and make her understand my husband’s decision but it seems like every year gets worse. What can I do? How can I make her stop blaming me for his decision? She even said she wished we didn’t have kids together. Please help me. I.
Answer: Dear I.: You can’t do anything to change your MIL. She is the way she is. She was once in full charge of your husband and she can’t face the fact that those days are over.
What you can do is stand up for yourselves. Your home is a new family unit that she is not in charge of. You make the rules, she doesn’t. If she can accept that…fine but if she can’t, that is her problem. She needs to learn that. Call her on her threats. Say: “Suit yourself. That’s how it’s going to be.”
There is no reason why you and your husband (and your children) have to take your MIL’s abuse…or abuse from his ex and their son. That’s what it is. Blessings, Luise