Question: Dear Luise: My husband’s grandmother is jealous of my relationship with his mom; her daughter! She hates me. She just told my MIL that I stole her away from her. I have been with my husband for 33 years… married 27 and his mother and I are best friends. We live in different states. When she comes here she likes to stay with us because here it’s “like home” and then her guilt kicks in. Her mother really hates it and says she is a bad mother. After all, she has two other DILs and I get all her time. My MIL is at her house now, taking care of her. She has some back problems. I went to visit yesterday. I knew there was something wrong; grandma was cold. She said she wasn’t up to company. Then she made something to eat and washed the dishes that MIL was supposed to do. I really felt uncomfortable for the first time ever being there because I could feel my MIL’s pain. Then she said how she has been crying for the past couple of days. Her mother is beating her down with guilt. I have three BILs that think of me as their sister and I have always been there for them. Two of them are in 2nd marriages and very are happy and one has been divorced for years. So yes, I have been here through it all. I take my vacations with my MIL. We can spend 3 months together and it still feels like only a week. I lost my own mother 12 years ago and MIL has always been there for me and loves me like her own. I take good care of my husband and our 2 girls, 24 and 19 years old. We have 1 grandson age 5 that we adore. He is our life. Grandma hates the fact that my MIL has a special bond with our grandson because she has other grand children and he is the one she always talks about. This is her first GREAT grandchild…the others re grandchildren. I call her “mom”. What do I do with her mother? She treats us both like we did something wrong and all we ever did was enjoy each other. She hates the fact we have this unconditional love…a real mother -daughter relationship. I am so heart broken. Now, after 33 years of being in this family, I am even the trustee of grandma’s will. Now, more then ever, the glare she gives is full of hate. I am scared that when it’s her time to see the Lord I am only going to remember the hurt from the glares. It’s so sad. My MIL knows she can’t even think about coming to visit us. We are talking about a 88 year old women, a 65 year old MIL and I am 47. What do we do? Please help. J.
Answer: Dear J.: As far as I know, there is nothing you can do except to know that the woman’s perceptions are way off. You can’t change her and you can’t change the havoc she has brought to the family with her insecurity.
All you can do is put up with her and try not to set her off. If you can, try to forgive her for what she has piled on everyone. No one in the family deserves it. Know that all is well in her heart even if it doesn’t show up in her life…due to the fact that all is not well in her emotions. Whatever pain others have experienced as a result of her behavior, it doesn’t begin in to touch the pain she has brought on herself. Blessings, Luise