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Discussion Starter #1
My MIL wanted to see the kids yesterday, which she usually does every Wednesday on her usual day off of work. When she came over she also asked if she could borrow back my SIL/BIL lawn mower before it rains this weekend.

This giant heavy lawn mower situation was a complete stupid waste of time. Her and I are outside trying to figure out how to fold it down, lift it into her car, while the little kids are running around between the inside and outside of the house.

When she relaizes its probably not going to fit, and I tell her this is probably not a good time, She says, "where is Tim when we need him," I give her my husbands pager number at work, and when he comes home to help her, and offers to drive the mower to her home and get it out of her car for her she denies his offer and decides she is going to leave it.

I almost feel like she drove me nuts after a while. I was helping my daughter with homework, getting snacks and baking dinner. I kept having to re-direct my kids. After a while, she started to get on them, she even yelled at them really loud. I started to notice that our stress was probably steming from her visit with us.

I am in the mood to call my therapist who I havent seen in months, but I just don't have the means right now (co pay, sitter, time) possibly in a few more weeks.

Not only did she kinda manipulate us all day, she also had my husband busy searching the internet for her new/old sweetheart and ignoring my daughter when she wanted them to see something she created.

This ignoring her, made her act out (daughter, age 5 mooned them), and my husband spanked her! I'm going nuts not knowing what is right or wrong here and if I need to get my kids the hell away from that family! (him and my in laws)

Am I over re-acting? Which is usually something my husband will tell me, is my MIL being a bully? or is it all in my head? Any suggestions?
 

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Ya'll need some lessons in boundary setting. :)

My whole family is like that but I stopped putting up with it years ago. Don't be bringing that chaos to my house. I don't like it.
 

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how do I set boundaries without upsetting anyone? Sometimes in the past I just tried screening the calls or stop communication when my MIL would come over and be critical or overbearing. Then I felt like we shouldn't be so "distant," or whatever and started going out to dinner or lunches together, bc she just likes to come over late mostly.

Last week she wanted to come over late in the evening around 6ish when my husband gets home, well we had a lot to do and her being there didn't stop us; mow the yard, vacuum, do dishes, laundry, cook, homeowork, and bath times. trying to show her we are busy and have our own things going on in the late evening.

Yesterday I had the house perfect so we didn't have to act so busy, but then she had us still goining.

I know my kids wouldn't act that awful usually, and we typically don't spank or yell. My husband and I have agreed on this, and I'm mad that he chose to spank, her especailly in front of his own mom.

So I agree about boundaries have been invaded or broke, do you have any tips or what has worked?
 

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how do I set boundaries without upsetting anyone?
If you figure that out let me know. LOL I'm as nice as can be when I set boundaries and I still end up upsetting someone. It seems its only the healthy people that respect my boundaries the rest just get mad. I figure it's either them or me and I choose them. :)

The best book on the subject is boundaries by Cloud and Townsend.
 

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okay thanks I will look into that book.

I have a feeling its going to take some time to figure it out, and I will look into that book. Ya normal people know better most times.

hicks- I want to get our very own lawn mower plus never borrow anything again from them bc it seems to complicate things.

Plus I was wondering if you can explain more into having H manage her...
 

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Hicks bc I always feel like we are entertaining her, or she is managing us. Should I not answer the calls or plans?
 

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okay here is another rant please dont mind,

we almost NEVER go to her place and hang out as a family bc she keeps her place SO filthy its almost unsafe. We have even cleaned for her in order to go spend time there. Its such a handicap I think she sets up for her self.
 

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I have a brother-in-law who is very irrational and makes embarassing scenes. He ruined Thanksgiving by screaming and swearing at his mother.

He and his wife live very far away and we took a very long drive to see them TWICE, only to have my BIL make his mother and his wife cry with his antics on the second visit as well. My BIL weeps and apologizes and then does the same thing.

My husband finally told his brother he needs to see a shrink. We will not be visiting for a long while because we are tired of his brother's nonsense. We refuse to ride the drama train and going through the cycle of abuse with my husband's brother.

Stop letting your MIL walk all over you. Set boundaries while still being polite and respectful. Your husband should be drawing the lines with his family. He can start the boundary conversations with "You know I love you Mom....". That helps a lot.

The reason why you are worried about your MIL's feelings is you are a kind and loving person. It is possible to care too much about other's reactions to your boundary setting. How about continuing to screen calls if you or husband would rather not confront her directly?
 

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Your husband's mother is disrupting your and your husband's marriage. It's his job to deal with his mother, and protect his marriage, not yours.
 

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I agree with the boundary thing. "Now is not a good time" is a perfectly acceptable answer.

However she was borrowing BACK a lawn mower? Why wasn't it returned in the first place? Couldn't that scene been avoided had it been used and returned?
 

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Boundaries should be set by both you and Hubs; then it's up to him to deliver the boundary message to his Mother and it's HIS job to enforce them with her.

Borrowing: oh yes, my Sister is famous for this.......she can come pick it up when she wants to use it; but unless we go get it, we don't get it back. Needless to say, she hasn't borrowed anything in a very long time, because we won't let her. Sounds mean, but if you're kind enough to lend it out, the borrower should be considerate enough to return it when done with it. Sorry for the RANT! I feel better now.
 
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