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Very Good In Laws Albeit Unclean

Discussion in 'Relationship With In-Laws' started by ThanjavurPonnu, Jan 21, 2020.

  1. ThanjavurPonnu

    ThanjavurPonnu New IL'ite

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    Namaskaram/Namaste to all

    I'm newly married. It's been only 8 months.
    I come from a trad 'Namam wearing' family and married an Iyer.
    I don't have a MIL, died many years ago. DH and SIL were raised by grandparents and Appa. I had to give a background because what I'll be posting ahead has a connection to it.

    1. Good things
    They are very accepting. They have a cook for the last 10 years something I could have never imagined in my mother's house. (I was very close to my grandma and I grew up celebrating all festivals in grand manner.)
    They genuinely like me and my FIL openly praises me in front of relatives and enjoys my cooking too. My SIL is also a no nonsense girl and doesn't interfere. DH too doesn't bother much and is busy in his world. Relatives don't interfere. Athai/Mami etc aren't permitted to pass remarks. Thanks to my FIL for this
    We live a floor above. That's practically only our bedroom and whole day we spend time at FIL's house. I have a 93 yo grand mil with whom I get along well. She treats me like her granddaughter and she's my granny.

    2. The downside
    Unclean must be an understatement. I had to pester them to get rid of pests. House was filled with roaches and bed bugs. I have cleanliness OCD. I CAN'T imagine not bathing twice a day. Every single corner of their house is dirty. I wouldn't care much if it's unclean. I tried cleaning a lot in the beginning but they didn't appreciate it much. Their reply was - unclean environment bothers you, not us so make peace with it.
    I can't stand nor could I sleep because of bed bugs. With lot of difficulty and fight with DH I got pest control done in both homes. It came to our house because they travel. I must be spent a bomb in getting rid of them.
    My FIL is amused that I fear pests so much. I fake that I fear them. Truth is I HATE them. They are back again in FIL's house and this time they refusing to get pest control done. My FIL told me last time that I fear them because I'm not used to them. Idhula edho nalla gunam aa?? It's not like they are not wealthy. They have enough wealth and it doesn't cost much to be clean. It costs a lot to be dirty.
    They are happy in their dungeon. I care little to be honest because it's their space but I fear they'd travel again to my house as DH often sits on the bed infested with bugs. He doesn't care about these things.
    I empathise that the pest smell can be troublesome for oldies. But, how long am I going to make this stretch? Once kids come, I cannot imagine my children growing up in unclean environment. They don't mind dead roaches lying on their clothes. My SIL has stuffed so many of her items that it will take a lifetime to declutter.

    Is there anyone else who's gone through the same?
    Personal hygiene itself is very poor, forget about the house.

    They don't like celebrating festivals much as well. On the contrary I love festivals and was raised in such a household. Often I end up slogging alone.

    When I requested for pest control again and they refused, I didn't speak to them for 4 days and they thought that I'm unwell. I was disturbed that they don't see what I want to say at the same time I knew that they'd never ever know. As for my DH, he's clear that I should make peace with the way they are. Which is a smart response as changing ppl is impossible.

    Seeking solution to knock sense in either me or them.
    P.S. I try to keep my house clean but I'm sure that with time I'd have to move in with FIL as he will be alone. He's a genuinely nice person but I've given up that they'd change yet at the same time I get paranoid thinking what my children will face.
     
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  2. anika987

    anika987 Finest Post Winner

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    You are super lucky to have such a good family!

    Yeah bed bugs is something you guys need to get rid of but do not bother if they do not take bath twice a day.Honestly,not a big deal.

    Festivals just do your best.


    Just call pest control once.Your DH can understand..

    I think in your case things can be worked upon.Just relax and do things slowly
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2020
    Anu14, Sunshine04 and ThanjavurPonnu like this.
  3. ThanjavurPonnu

    ThanjavurPonnu New IL'ite

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    Bathing twice was to emphasize my OCD.
    As for BB, they are very cool with it and want me to make peace with it :)

     
    anika987 likes this.
  4. 1Sandhya

    1Sandhya Platinum IL'ite

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    Bedbugs is a huge problem. Reason they keep coming back is because they are into clothes and stuff. Just pest control wont work. You have to throw away or burn the infested items. Usually out here if you go to hotel with bedbugs and they get into your luggage they advice to burn or throw away all the items which you took. Even for throwing away there will be a procedure, you have to seal it in plastic so they dont escape and then put in garbage.

    The problem is that your inlaws have spent so many years without MIL who would take care of these things and gradually got used to this. Since they are nice it means they are ignorant of the true dangers. So educate them. Research in net for the problems with bedbugs, the health side-effects they cause and see if there is a match with health issues the family members are having. If so enlighten them as to real cause. It may open their eyes. download a few graphic pics of bedbug bites and show them also.
    You may end up depolluting room by room. Start with your room and the kitchen. Throw away any infested item quietly and buy new. Plastic is your best friend. Put all new items in tightly sealed NEW plastic bottles, if sit on bed, cover the place you sit with plastic and sit etc. Separate shoes to wear over there and leave outside before entering 'clean' place.
    Since they are nice, deal with them nicely and keep showing the pics, and your net research and explaining. And finally since you are now part of family and cooking, try to convey nicely that you also need to feel comfortable in the place to give your best to the family. Dont pretend you are scared of them if you are not. It will cause miscommunication. Tell the truth and express your concern in simple words. Keep invoking dead mil and saying if she were alive she would surely agree with me. She must be sad to see her family living among dead cockroaches.
     
  5. 1Sandhya

    1Sandhya Platinum IL'ite

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    I re-read your post and you seem to use cockroaches and bedbugs interchangeably. They are very very different with different set of problems. Please check net to educate yourself as to differences. Cockroach is lesser problem. Much easier to handle as you have control of kitchen. Hire a cleaner who will do deep cleaning, remove cobwebs and clean corners and sanitize the floors every month for first year and after that once every three months. Dont leave food lying outside etc. Gradually it will die out. So which is it? Cockroach or bed bugs? Let us know.
     
    anika987 likes this.
  6. SinghManisha

    SinghManisha Platinum IL'ite

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    There is no way to impose your standards of cleanliness without offending your in-laws. Are you willing to take that chance ? Your FIL will not praise you anymore but you won’t have bed bugs for company. The athai/ mami will also have plenty to chatter about.

    If not, you will have to work extra hard to keep your bedroom clean and make sure husband will not sit on the bed until he changes his clothes. Your SIL might not appreciate you telling her how to live, so I would not fight that battle. When it comes time for FIL to live with you, implement some more changes.

    Are you a housewife ? I appreciate my job more when I have guests that mess up my home . Staying out for a good chunk of the day may help you cope the mess at home.

    ( my shaitan mind is thinking you could also pretend you saw a creature other than bed bugs and cockroaches and initiate a emergency cleanup. Would rats or snakes make your in-laws uneasy ? )
     
    ThanjavurPonnu likes this.
  7. Laks09

    Laks09 Staff Member Finest Post Winner

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    OP - 7 months in. Pick your battles. This isn’t worth it. You get pest control in your house. You are not moving in tomorrow. You don’t have to worry about it now. The first few years are about building relationships. The latter years both you and FIL will adjust and let go of some things and start doing some things for each other. Don’t get on the wrong foot in seven months time. Especially since you have a separate unit you are living in now.
    Look at the positives. You have reasonably good inlaws and a separate place to stay as a newly wed. I’d call it a good situation to be in.
    Reg festivals, the women in the house usually slog alone while the rest of the family enjoys. You have fond memories because mom and grandma did all the work. Now it’s your turn to do it in your house. Festivals are a lot of work. Without your MIL in the house your FIL probably has hurtful memories and hence let festivals slide. I know my aunt stopped celebrating festivals because of the emotions it brought in her after losing my uncle. I suggest you do everything you want to and help bring about some festivities in the house. In time, everyone will be excited about it. Most likely, you will be doing the work. I think if you slowly start asking your spouse to help out during festivals and share a little load it will help. In seven months you’ve not hit all the festivals yet. Start again with the next festival.

    Btw, mentioning bugs, pests, not talking for four days etc is a sure shot way of distancing yourself from your in laws. You are still a newly wed and this will cause a rift with your spouse. Work on building a rapport with everyone and most importantly your relationship with your husband before venturing into decluttering their place. Keep your place upstairs clean and pest free and give each other some time to get closer before major cleaning ventures.
     
  8. sarvantaryamini

    sarvantaryamini Silver IL'ite

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    Dear TP,

    Personally I would never live in a place with bedbugs because I am severely allergic to them, yes that's right, I am allergic to them and I hate the other kind, simply hate them like you. You can't change your ILs. Since they are good people, you can say that you are allergic to bedbugs - if it's not too late. At least I am. We got to know that we had bedbugs because I started itching all over during the day and was having hives. You could have had that excuse in the beginning. Then they would have considered. As for the second kind, you don't have to call pest control, if you are the brave type, you can go on a killing mission, kill them whenever you see them. For bed bugs, take a vacuum cleaner and vacuum the bed (take the mattress out and vacuum it) and pick the remaining out, individually. That's what we did in my case. Don't call pest control. Take matters into your hands. Literally.
     
    ThanjavurPonnu likes this.
  9. kaluputti

    kaluputti Gold IL'ite

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    "Reg festivals, the women in the house usually slog alone while the rest of the family enjoys. You have fond memories because mom and grandma did all the work. Now it’s your turn to do it in your house. Festivals are a lot of work. Without your MIL in the house your FIL probably has hurtful memories and hence let festivals slide.":cheer:A little paradigm shift, und how much it helps in relationships!!!
     
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  10. ashneys

    ashneys Platinum IL'ite

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    Have you mentioned to your dh that it’s an unacceptable situation when your kid comes in to the picture ? Or is he ok with an infant being raised in that situation ?

    Your in laws self hygiene/ their excessive things : you can’t do anything, ignore

    Dirty house n pest control: send them out to somewhere nice for the whole day and call the deep cleaning n pest control guys n do it once a month or three months, depending on the situation. I don’t think asking for permission is gona help. First educate your hubby, use science to help you. Tell him you can do without anyone knowing to not offend your fil. If you have your dh on your side, you don’t need any permission, just keep doing it n get rid of the pests. Make sure to hire help to clean the place on a daily basis so no cobwebs n dust accumulates. Hire at a time when you fil is out for a walk or something.
    It’s not easy for some people to manage helps or they may see them as hindrance to supervise or jus to have them around, so you take the handle of this cleaning thing without making it look like you are supervising. N try to stay out of your Fil’s way. Do it like a silent ninja.

    They are nice folks, so you too handle this very nicely.
    You can tell them you are allergic to the “pests”, don’t comment on anything else.

    Understand that it will be very hard for them to accept your way initially because it will be accepting that they failed in their way of living n you have swooped into fix. It’s not easy for many to accept. So never say what’s wrong, just go in for a ‘smooth fix’. Be super nice about it.

    About festivals, you take the lead. Get people to start assisting you. Involve everyone from your hubby should be the first line of support then fil, sil, even grand mil. Understand it’s new for them so you have to put in the effort initially. Hire help if required, but just keep doing it, n ensure to involve them n they will come around on their own soon.
     
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