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Ok, some history before I start....

My mom history, background and attitude:
- A single mother who raised me since when I was still 7 years old
- Age 74 this year
- Prefer people to follow her way of doing things
- Don't talk much and picky in food (mostly due to health concern such as seafood, mushroom, seelcted fish type and selected green vege - she is a bit paranoid of healthy lifestyle and have this mindset of 'if I don't take good care of myself, and if I fall sick, I'm the 1 will be having pain - not others)
- A very good home cooker, cleaner
- Stay together with me and my wife


And for my wife:
- A bit more sensitive than most girls that I know of (about the same age)
- Easily stress and not the optimistic type of person
- Quite a bad temper
- Like to dig old issue that we already agreed not to do that (although we have discussed it and solved it as well)
- Not a good cooker (yet)
- been married to me for 1 year

Those listed are not the complete list, but are those I find it related to this topic.

The story:
Ok, about 2++ months ago, my mom undergo the 'total knee replacement' operation and due to that, both me and I need to re-arrange our time to spend more time with her. During the hospitalization time, there is no problem as 1 of our relative is here to help out. But when my mom come back from hospital,
our relative have to go back. Thus, leaving 2 of us to take care of her. But because both of us still need to work (our annual leave is not a lot), so I decided to take turn with my wife - such as Mon, Weds, and Fri I'll work from home. Tues and Thurs my wife will stay at home and work. During this time, whoever that are staying at home will need to prepare both lunch and dinner. Sometimes the lunch is not home cook but rather from outside (bought it) and the dinner will be home cook.
During this period of time, I can sense my wife feel more stress then before. Both of us have work to handle and sometimes we have no choice but still need to work the extra time at night.
As for me, I still can manage my time but, it is not that well for my wife. FYI, both of us work in the same company but different team.

When we were cooking the meal, my mom will sometime drop by the kitchen and take a look. Sometimes she feel the way we cook the dishes is not the right way, she will direct and give comment. Just that sometimes the way she talk, my wife couldn't take it. Well, she did try to understand that my mom is old...so just let it be. Myself also practice the same kind of approach when my wife share with me....to her is a stress, not saying her advice is bad, just that is a stress to her and the way my mom communicate, is hard to achieve my mom standard.

Last 2 week, there is a case problem. My wife decided to cook a dish and is her 1st time cooking it. She follow some receipt book or something from the Internet, and try to cook it for our dinner that night. She ask me not to help out ... but ya, I still try to help on cleaning up the plate and the ingredients accordingly. This is normal for me to do...more like accompany my wife. During the meal time, my mom asked whether the dish that my wife cooked, is it the ingredients that we used are from the fridge? I told her no, but is something bought from some shops by my wife. Then, my mom asked why we didn't use the ingredient that was already available in the fridge? So we told her we don't know there is....well, that is where my wife started to really piss off in her mind. She hinted me and I feel a mixture of 'i need to protect my wife' and at the same time the feeling of 'nevermind, my mom is old, let her talk'. So I did reply my mom that this is something different from the shop that my wife bought from and we don't know how to use the ingredients and mix it for the dish that my wife want to prepare for us.

That night, I believe apart from that* event, my wife reached her limit....she just very upset and feels I didn't protect her AND it is always something bad from my mom to whatever dishes she prepared throughout the time. Before this, I mean before my mom undergo the operation, my mom used to cook the dinner at home and when we back from work, we will have the dinner (sometime together, sometime due to late, she have it first). Then we we will clean the plate and table as well. My wife mostly cook only on weekend -cause that is the only time for us.

That night, she was so pissed of....that I have to sleep in another room. Things doesn't get better on the next morning. Starting that day, my wife just won't talk to my mom. My mom feel it and she did asked me. I just simply tell her that 'mom, sometimes I think you need to let other people to use their own way - rather than yours when preparing meals and if really there is comment, I think there are better way of expressing it. Not saying the comment is not helpful, but the way of expressing it...is not nice especially when someone that seldom cook is trying to do it. Some words of encouragement before any advice given.'
My mom feels weird and think why a comments will give stress to my wife and make her feeling ....down. Technically to speak, both of them don't know well each other which I think is normal...for a newly wed and spend most of the time in office.

She even posted her feeling and some story of it to Facebook, resulted her* family feel the heat and they called my phone. It was a nightmare as, I have to respect them as relative* and try to elaborate the details. Although the facebook post is only visible to selected 'family' members and some of our close friends, I feel it is too much and not needed.

Cut thing short, my wife want me to do something...she want me to talk to my mom about it. So I did, and 3 of us in the living hall where I talked the most. Instead of pointing finger to my mom, I told to both of them that starting today* I think this house should only have 1 leader and that should be me. Coming from Christian background, it was my mistake for not enforcing it at the beginning. So now I try to communicate it to both of them and indirectly tell my mom and my wife to give more encouragement words, and if there is part involve decision making, the final decision will still be me....well, both of them still can give ideas but the final call will still be me....and if the decision does not result good, none insult or bad comment should be given, in fact some type of encouragement words should be given.

Due to take event, my wife feels that my mom don't see face to face to her and because of that, she did the same to her. She feel stress at the home and want to go back to her mom place. Well she did, but due to certain reason, she still have to come back. Well, I did convince her to come back as well.

But she still very stress and prefer my mom to move out....and she just don't know how to face/deal with my mom.
And my wife keep on digging back the previous case where my mom give comment, or when she just give black face, etc, and basically anything bad about her, she will just nag about it again and again. I told her changes take time and we shouldn't bring back a very long issue when it was discussed and solved previously. I told her that not everyone is perfect, even both of us has our pro and cons,but she will still continue with it. I'll just keep quiet and find my time to reply her accordingly cause I feel at that time she just hate my mom...

By the way, to add on, we agreed to ask our church pastor to help us, guide us....and become our listener as well. He also talked to my mom about it.

The problem is, I feel that we have come to a point where my wife just really stress and hate it when at home...since my mom is around and also, my mom feels less to face/talk to my wife - scare she say the wrong words make the situation worsen.
I did tell my wife that is not my mother don't want to improve on things that we think can, but it just takes time. The problem is, my wife feel very stress when at home and expect my mom to talk to her first...or something....cause she just too stress to face her again.

Sorry for the long post, but I'm trying to put everything that might caused this. So if anyone have any idea on how to approach this I'll be grateful.
 

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There is no divided loyalty when you are married. Your loyalty should ALWAYS be to your spouse, not your parents. You need to TELL (not ask) your mother to stay out of the kitchen when your wife is cooking. Her opinion is not wanted or needed.

I have a critical, "helpful" MIL too and it is infuriating to have to deal with.

Why is your mother living with you? You've only been married a year, that's gotta be tough, especially on your wife.

I'm not saying completely disregard your mother, and I'm not saying confront her and say hurtful things to her either. You just have to say to her respectfully that your wife likes to do things her own way, and as the lady of the house that is her right.

Your mother will have to like it or lump it.
 

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There is no divided loyalty when you are married. Your loyalty should ALWAYS be to your spouse, not your parents. You need to TELL (not ask) your mother to stay out of the kitchen when your wife is cooking. Her opinion is not wanted or needed.

I have a critical, "helpful" MIL too and it is infuriating to have to deal with.

Why is your mother living with you? You've only been married a year, that's gotta be tough, especially on your wife.

I'm not saying completely disregard your mother, and I'm not saying confront her and say hurtful things to her either. You just have to say to her respectfully that your wife likes to do things her own way, and as the lady of the house that is her right.

Your mother will have to like it or lump it.
Yes, yes and yes. I'm sorry but you'll have to consider your mother as a guest. A guest deserving respect and kind treatment, but one who is not allowed to overstep the boundaries of being a guest. This means your wife is in charge. It's not your mom's house. Keep things simple.

Also, the stress caused to your wife is undermining your relationship. It's up to you to deal with your mother so that your wife doesn't feel as though she has to constantly defend herself.
 

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My mom feels weird and think why a comments will give stress to my wife and make her feeling ....down.
Because a woman always wants her husband's mother to respect her and see her as an equally capable woman, capable of taking care of you just as well as your mother did. Plus, a woman wants to feel like it's HER home that she's nesting in, not her mother in law's. If it doesn't feel like hers, she may always be on edge and waiting for the next insult and feeling she's not on an even level with your mother.
 

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My MIL was already living with DH when I moved in. I had a hard time 'belonging' there. It's a woman thing. And, yes, you DO have to protect your wife. You do pretty well, but you need to have more conversations with your mom about it.
 

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I had my mother-in-law living with us for 4 years because of serious illness, multiple strokes, amputation. I thought it was the right thing to do, gave my consent and didn't complain (my wife said its your choice, another family member said he couldn't do it). From that experience, let me note one very simple principle,

GENERALLY YOU DON'T HAVE PARENTS LIVING WITH YOU UNLESS YOU HAVE TO.

Actually, at the start of our marriage, my wife suggested a joint living arrangements with a new house and I said absolutely not.
Of course, your wife is stressed having apparently two bosses, with your mother siding with you in any dispute, when a new wife should be running her own house. What did you do, say how I can reduce her sex drive and create some more stress.
 

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(Comments in parenthesis)

Ok, some history before I start....

My mom history, background and attitude:
- A single mother who raised me since when I was still 7 years old
- Age 74 this year
- Prefer people to follow her way of doing things
- Don't talk much and picky in food (mostly due to health concern such as seafood, mushroom, seelcted fish type and selected green vege - she is a bit paranoid of healthy lifestyle and have this mindset of 'if I don't take good care of myself, and if I fall sick, I'm the 1 will be having pain - not others)
- A very good home cooker, cleaner
- Stay together with me and my wife

(Adoring mother, beloved son, wife/third wheel).


And for my wife:
- A bit more sensitive than most girls that I know of (about the same age) (NO, A HIDE OF STEEL TO DEAL WITH THIS SITUATION WHEN YOU DON'T HAVE TO).
- Easily stress and not the optimistic type of person (disagree, you placed her in an unusually stressful situation with a critical mother-in-law and she is far more tolerant and accommodating than the average American woman).
- Quite a bad temper
- Like to dig old issue that we already agreed not to do that (although we have discussed it and solved it as well, from what you wrote nothing was solved, the solution for most things is for your wife to allow being dominated and taking third place in her own home. I have been married for a 1/4 century and realize my wife runs her own home as my mother did also)
- Not a good cooker (yet) (you better learn to start complimenting your wife's cooking. Do you also go up to strange Rotweilers and smack them in the mouth)
- been married to me for 1 year

Those listed are not the complete list, but are those I find it related to this topic.

The story:
Ok, about 2++ months ago, my mom undergo the 'total knee replacement' operation and due to that, both me and I need to re-arrange our time to spend more time with her. During the hospitalization time, there is no problem as 1 of our relative is here to help out. But when my mom come back from hospital,
our relative have to go back. Thus, leaving 2 of us to take care of her. (No, leaving you and if need be a paid visiting nurse and if your wife agrees, some assistance, You don't order your wife to care for your mother) But because both of us still need to work (our annual leave is not a lot), so I decided to take turn with my wife - such as Mon, Weds, and Fri I'll work from home. Tues and Thurs my wife will stay at home and work. During this time, whoever that are staying at home will need to prepare both lunch and dinner. ( The words out of your mother's mouth here should be thank you so much for cooking, it's delicious, there's no one better than my daughter-in-law)

Sometimes the lunch is not home cook but rather from outside (bought it) and the dinner will be home cook.
During this period of time, I can sense my wife feel more stress then before. (Hey I'm stressed. Can you two {wife and husband} get a weekend away to relax).

Both of us have work to handle and sometimes we have no choice but still need to work the extra time at night. (again for her in addition to the apparently mandatory job of taking care of your mother)
As for me, I still can manage my time but, it is not that well for my wife. FYI, both of us work in the same company but different team.

When we were cooking the meal, my mom will sometime drop by the kitchen and take a look. Sometimes she feel the way we cook the dishes is not the right way, she will direct and give comment.
(you got to be f__ing kidding, your wife is taking care of her, and cooking dinner, and mom has a complaint. Fine you do it, get your son to do it, or get take-out is my response if I'm your wife).

Just that sometimes the way she talk, my wife couldn't take it. Well, she did try to understand that my mom is old...so just let it be.
(you should be providing compliments, taking your wife out for dinner, bringing flowers, and telling her you know its hard with mom hurt, and you can't tell her how much your appreciate all your wife has done).


Myself also practice the same kind of approach when my wife share with me....to her is a stress, not saying her advice is bad, just that is a stress to her and the way my mom communicate, is hard to achieve my mom standard.


Last 2 week, there is a case problem. My wife decided to cook a dish and is her 1st time cooking it. She follow some receipt book or something from the Internet, and try to cook it for our dinner that night. She ask me not to help out ... but ya, I still try to help on cleaning up the plate and the ingredients accordingly. This is normal for me to do...more like accompany my wife. During the meal time, my mom asked whether the dish that my wife cooked, is it the ingredients that we used are from the fridge? I told her no, but is something bought from some shops by my wife. Then, my mom asked why we didn't use the ingredient that was already available in the fridge? (Why can't your mother be quiet, why doesn't she have the basic common sense to appreciate and compliment someone who is cooking for her. I'm surprised your wife didn't take the dishes, throw them against the wall, and tell her to cook her own F-ing meal)

So we told her we don't know there is....well, that is where my wife started to really piss off in her mind. She hinted me and I feel a mixture of 'i need to protect my wife' and at the same time the feeling of 'nevermind, my mom is old, let her talk'. So I did reply my mom that this is something different from the shop that my wife bought from and we don't know how to use the ingredients and mix it for the dish that my wife want to prepare for us. (or mom, I love you but I care about my marriage, there just isn't working out, I would love to find you a nice place nearby. Alternatively, realize there is no place for a wife in third place and that you and your mom should spend the rest of her life with you together without some other woman as a competitor. )

That night, I believe apart from that* event, my wife reached her limit....she just very upset and feels I didn't protect her AND it is always something bad from my mom to whatever dishes she prepared throughout the time. Before this, I mean before my mom undergo the operation, my mom used to cook the dinner at home and when we back from work, we will have the dinner (sometime together, sometime due to late, she have it first). Then we we will clean the plate and table as well. My wife mostly cook only on weekend -cause that is the only time for us.

That night, she was so pissed of....that I have to sleep in another room. (could see that coming two paragraphs ago, did you check out the new book, how to get your wife out of the mood. )
Things doesn't get better on the next morning. Starting that day, my wife just won't talk to my mom. My mom feel it and she did asked me. I just simply tell her that 'mom, sometimes I think you need to let other people to use their own way - rather than yours when preparing meals and if really there is comment, I think there are better way of expressing it. Not saying the comment is not helpful, but the way of expressing it...is not nice especially when someone that seldom cook is trying to do it. Some words of encouragement before any advice given.' (good advice, but not surprisingly mom won't listen).
My mom feels weird and think why a comments will give stress to my wife and make her feeling ....down. (your mom complains, criticizes, complains more and is surprised. If your mom cannot shut her mouth, you need to find a nice apartment, nearby, or senior citizen's housing. Once there, she is free to complain about the food or other residents)

Technically to speak, both of them don't know well each other which I think is normal...for a newly wed and spend most of the time in office.

She even posted her feeling and some story of it to Facebook, resulted her* family feel the heat and they called my phone. It was a nightmare as, I have to respect them as relative* and try to elaborate the details. Although the facebook post is only visible to selected 'family' members and some of our close friends, I feel it is too much and not needed. (agree here, ventilating these problems can't help but she's obviously frustrated).

Cut thing short, my wife want me to do something...she want me to talk to my mom about it. So I did, and 3 of us in the living hall where I talked the most. Instead of pointing finger to my mom, I told to both of them that starting today* I think this house should only have 1 leader and that should be me. (It should be your wife, it is customary for a woman to run her own home). Coming from Christian background, it was my mistake for not enforcing it at the beginning. (you and your mom have been tough, allowing your wife
to be repeatedly criticized and dominated and you feel the problem is that you're too nice???)

So now I try to communicate it to both of them and indirectly tell my mom and my wife to give more encouragement words, and if there is part involve decision making, the final decision will still be me....well, both of them still can give ideas but the final call will still be me....and if the decision does not result good, none insult or bad comment should be given, in fact some type of encouragement words should be given.

Due to take event, my wife feels that my mom don't see face to face to her and because of that, she did the same to her. She feel stress at the home and want to go back to her mom place. Well she did, but due to certain reason, she still have to come back. Well, I did convince her to come back as well.

But she still very stress and prefer my mom to move out....and she just don't know how to face/deal with my mom. (Absolutely right. )
And my wife keep on digging back the previous case where my mom give comment, or when she just give black face, etc, and basically anything bad about her, she will just nag about it again and again. I told her changes take time and we shouldn't bring back a very long issue when it was discussed and solved previously. I told her that not everyone is perfect, even both of us has our pro and cons,but she will still continue with it. I'll just keep quiet and find my time to reply her accordingly cause I feel at that time she just hate my mom... (having everyone together prevents a normal relationship).

By the way, to add on, we agreed to ask our church pastor to help us, guide us....and become our listener as well. He also talked to my mom about it.

The problem is, I feel that we have come to a point where my wife just really stress and hate it when at home...since my mom is around and also, my mom feels less to face/talk to my wife - scare she say the wrong words make the situation worsen.
I did tell my wife that is not my mother don't want to improve on things that we think can, but it just takes time. The problem is, my wife feel very stress when at home and expect my mom to talk to her first...or something....cause she just too stress to face her again.

Sorry for the long post, but I'm trying to put everything that might caused this. So if anyone have any idea on how to approach this I'll be grateful.

(You seem pretty attached to your mom, you need to have the same level of feeling for your wife.).
 

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There is no divided loyalty when you are married. Your loyalty should ALWAYS be to your spouse, not your parents. You need to TELL (not ask) your mother to stay out of the kitchen when your wife is cooking. Her opinion is not wanted or needed....Your mother will have to like it or lump it.
:iagree:

Something not dissimilar happened very early in our relationship and I made no secret about it. My mother said something snide about either my wife or something to one of the kids and I had had enough, so out loud and in front of everyone I said something like: "Sorry - you dont get a vote on this. If you have something to say, say it to me and say it so that everyone can hear it. There are no secrets and I will not tolerate you undermining us directly to our children or you can leave. It is frankly none of your business."

Which of course went over like a lead balloon at first. But you know what - 3 things happened. 1) Nothing even close to that has ever happened ever again in 20 years since and 2) My wife knows in no uncertain terms where everyone stands and that I am on her side - she said as much once, and it matters. 3) My mother has always been perfectly fine ever since - which tells me this was all about posturing and power and control anyway.

these little turf wars and infightingneed to be nipped in the bud and firmly.
 
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