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How do I solve these Issues with my IN-LAWS??

Discussion in 'Relationship With In-Laws' started by galmysterios, May 5, 2010.

  1. galmysterios

    galmysterios New IL'ite

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    Hi there!

    It seems to me, that we Asians, especially us; Indian women have major issues when it comes to Parent-In-Laws (PIL). I realised that when I visited this website. Many of us seem to be facing this problem. Maybe its our upbringing and the emphasis that elders have to always be treated with respect.

    Well, my story....My marriage was a arranged cum love marriage. I knew my husband and is family from young. We were just family friends...more of a 'hi' & 'bye' kind of relation. My husband is the eldest and his got a younger brother and elderly parents.

    I have been married for 2 years now. Both my husband and I have an age difference of 9yrs. He is a wonderful husband and a terrific father to my 13mth old son. His parents have been living with us. We have never got on well from the beginning itself. His parents are of the conservative sort, while I am more of the modern type of gal. They are those who are very disorganised, messy kind of people, while I am a very orderly, disciplined and neat kind of person. So you can understand when my MIL use the kitchen she messes it up really bad, and just do 'surface' cleaning and walks off. My FIL is a male chavinist. He doesn't even wash his own plate after having a meal or worse still bring it to the wash basin and leave it there. And usual alot of disagreement goes on between the three of us (MIL, FIL & myself). To solve the main problem, I employed a maid to help with the household chores and to maintain the house as I am in the workforce. But they had problems with my maid too, gave her a hard time and I had to send her off coz it was just causing so much of problems between my husband n myself. My husband all the while have been updated abt the problems that I am facing with his parents. He'll talk to them but the change is only for a couple of days and then they are back to normal again. So this time I really lost it. I packed my bag, together with my son, I left my martial home for my parents house. I told my husband that I am not coming back till he gets another place for his parents to stay. His parents do not have a place of their own coz they had not paid the loan & interest for their house for a couple of years to the HDB (S'pore's flats are own by the govt). Hence, they had to sell their house and settle the payment with HDB. Now, they can't purchase a flat as both of them are not working. My husband talked to his grandma who stays in a 2room flat with her daughter, to take in his parents as they are causing a strain on our marriage. Grandmother agreed. Now the problem is everyone from my husbands' side; his uncles, aunties and grandma are upset with him for doing this to his homeless parents. I feel really bad for my husband. He is in this situation becoz he loves me so much. I really want to do some remedy for what happened. I don't want his relatives to look down at him. He have been a wonderful son, he took this decision becoz he had no choice. How can I make his people understand that we are not washing our hands of his parents but simply placing them at another place of residenc and still fullfil our duties to them? I definitely can't take in his parents again coz they are affecting me mentally and emotionally and in turn it affects me at work and also my relationship with my husband.

    And I know its kinda too late to ask but was what I did right or wrong? :idea
    Regards;
    Anu
     
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  2. mathanggi

    mathanggi New IL'ite

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    Hello Anu,

    do not get stressed on these issues...you have a understanding DH ..

    my point is as soon as you dont want your in-laws under one roof you could have directly said your DH to look for some rented home or such kind for your in-laws to stay...

    one more point is,for this your DH action of going to his grand mother requesting for his parents to stay is not a good idea..for these issues to walk out of marital home is not fair on your part as you would have hurted a loving heart (ur DH's heart) right..

    even now you can search for a separate rented home for your in-laws and you both(you &your DH) can help them in their expenses too, visit them often....etc...so that you both have a peace of mind that you take care of them to some extend you can...What ever you do others will blame for one or the other erason so do not worry about what others think about you or your DH....
     
  3. Malyatha

    Malyatha Gold IL'ite

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    First of all, your in-laws, no matter how difficult, are still his parents. So, while you don't have to tolerate any nonsense from them, you do owe them SOME consideration and respect. IMO, the way you handled the situation was really terrible.

    I also do not understand what kind of 'problems' you had with them, aside from the fact that they are conservative (our previous generation almost invariably are), your MIL is messy and disorganized and your FIL does not pick up after himself. If MIL was picking up after him and as long as YOU were not expected to do so, then I don't get what your problem was. Regarding the maid, how did they give her a tough time? From what I read, the maid did not quit - rather YOU fired her - and I also don't get how the MIL - maid dynamics would have affected your marriage??? I simply don't!

    Secondly, you walked out of your home with your son??? Why??? Instead of having a FAMILY dialog and directly telling your in-laws / husband that they needed to find another place to live, you chose to bring MORE drama into the situation by walking out with your son and emotionally blackmailing your husband to get his parents out of the house? Please note that I don't really have an issue with you wanting to live separately but I DO have an issue with how your husband reacted. BTW, I don't understand why you felt that you could move your son to your parents' house with you. Your son has TWO parents. So, you had no right to move your son to your parents' place without his father's consent. You further have NO right to dictate your husband's access to his son, unless he is abusive or a drug addict or a criminal. In the US, this would be considered PARENTAL KIDNAPPING and a form of child abuse. Don't do this again.

    Instead of getting them a rental place to live in separately, he palmed them off to his GRANDMOTHER???? Was he expecting HER to provide for HIS parents??? Did he ask his parents if they WANTED to live with his grandmother and aunt? Did he give them the option of living separately in a rental home? Who is he to decide where they should live and how can he approach his grandmother without consulting his parents first??

    No wonder your relatives are condemning his actions!!! And when they realize that you are behind this, you are being jointly condemned too. What if this had happened to your parents??? Will you simply send them off to live with someone else? Would you like it if tomorrow your son moves you and your husband into your in-laws' home without even asking you, simply because his wife has a problem with you???? Wouldn't you want to be at least consulted in the decision of where YOU should live????

    The solution I propose is simple. LET THEM choose a rented place to live in. Help them with the rent and necessities of life. Your husband and son should visit them regularly so they don't feel that they have been shut out from their son's and grandson's life. In time, they will get used to living separately and may in fact be happier without having to worry about how you have an issue with their personalities and expect them to do things YOUR way all the time.

    But, please, whatever it is, in the future, don't palm off your responsibilities to anyone else. It is not his grandmother's problem that you have issues with your in-laws. And, treat his parents as ADULTS. This means that you should not be making any decisions for them without consulting them first just like you would not want them to make decisions about / for you without asking / talking to you first. It was unfair for them to be moved out of their house into someone else's house without even being asked for their opinion / interest / comfort level in this regard.



    My response above should be more than clear as to what I think of your actions.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2010
  4. asuitablegirl

    asuitablegirl Gold IL'ite

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    Yeah Anu, I agree with Malyatha here.

    I totally understand your desire to live seperately. I think you should be able to live seperately if you want, even if your reason is 'just because I feel like it'. I hate the joint family and would not guilt anyone into feeling bad for leaving it. So I feel you are not wrong in what you want. But the how you got it is a totally different story.

    You ran away from the house with your son... who also happens to be your husband's son. See the problem? Malyatha is right, you basically kidnapped the kid. If I were your husband, I would have been incredibly angry. Not to mention, how upsetting that is for your child! Please think before you take such rash decisions in the future. Like Malyatha said, an open dialogue with your husband would have been much better than running away to your parents house and causing this type of drama. Don't even get me started on your parents, I don't even understand how they being 'elders', could let you do such a thing and support your wrong actions.

    Also, your husband should have discussed this topic in a mature fashion with his parents. Which would include: calmly and peacefully explaining your decision to live seperate, and asking where they would like to live.

    Unfortunately, we all have regrets and we all make mistakes. Just consider this a life lesson learned. Hope you see by now that even if what we want is right (in your case, living seperately) the road to get there must also be done right. JMO.
     
  5. Rihana

    Rihana IL Hall of Fame

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    Anu, what you did was not entirely wrong or entirely right. IMO, when you saw that even after reasonable attempts like hiring a maid servant and your husband talking to his parents, things were not working out, you still continued to live in the same arrangement, perhaps hoping things will change. They did not change, things piled up, and you blew your top, and left in a huff.

    Since your husband understands your position, you could have talked to him about living separately. Leaving marital home is a big no-no unless there is serious physical or mental abuse involved. Maybe the realization that if they don't shape up, they'll have to live separately would have caused your in-laws to change their habits a bit.

    All this is in glorious hindsight. Maybe many of us in your shoes would have done the same as you, especially when married for only two years. Not to calculate, but if you have a 13 month old child, then it means you and husband didn't have much time together before becoming parents. What is done is done. What you can do now is work towards maintaining an amicable Hi-bye/how-are-you relationship, and helping your husband take care of his parents, without having them live with you or too close to you, and also make sure you don't let all this negatively impact their relationship with their grandchild.

    Above all, stop blaming yourself if you are doing so, or soon others will start doing the same. Like mathanggi said, "What ever you do others will blame for one or the other erason so do not worry about what others think about you or your DH...."

    -Rihana
     
  6. tinku

    tinku Silver IL'ite

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    I can see clearly that you want to live alone with your DH and son. Your MIL may be a little disorganised and causing some problems but you need to take things easily.

    And it is very clear that you made your husband to be looked down by his relatives. And now you feel for it.

    You have to adjust certain things in life. Only then life would go smooth. For what you have done, people will definitely look down upon your husband.

    Though you may be highly organised, you cant expect everyone to be your kind. So try to take things easily.

    There is a saying :
    Try to find love rather than faults.

    Adjust with your in-laws. Give them their space. They are sort of old people. You cant change them. You need to adapt to circumstances.
     
  7. galmysterios

    galmysterios New IL'ite

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    Dear All,

    Thanks for taking the time to give your opinions about my issue. I really appreciate it...both the negative and postive comments that were posted here. If only I had come across this website along time back, I might have solved my issues smoothly with lesser heartache for everybody.

    Well, as alot of you mentioned here...I did discuss the problems with my DH of having his parents stay together with us after our marriage. He did agree that there would be problems especially since we are both working. And also since ours was a inter-religion marriage; I am a Christian while my husband's a Hindhu. So having his parents stay over at my place was just a temproray arrangement till his brother gets a house and the parents shift over there. Everytime we faced issues with my PIL, I did discuss them with my husband. He tried talking to them but they never really understood the impact that their problem was creating on our marriage, especially since my husband work is shift work, mine is office hours. We really dun get to see each other often, and when we do get to see each other its these issues that gets in the way and we start arguing and quarrelling. Issues my PIL have with me, just a few to give an idea of whats happening.....to do with religion, the way we lead our lives, they way I am bringing up my son, problems with the type and way I cook food for my husband, issues abt who's cooking to give my husband (my MIL cooks her own food coz she prefers her own style of cooking not too comfy with my cooking. While I cook is becoz DH insisted that I still continue to cook even if PIL do not want to eat but he wants to eat my cooking), when both DH and I go out, FIL had asked my maid to check on where we are going....these are just some of the issues.

    And I actually did not run away to my parents place with my son. I discuss it with DH and he was the one who said that I really need the break and he personally send me to my parents' place and he spoke to my dad. So I did not kidnap my son and run away from my DH. And my parents, got the assurance from DH before they took me and my son in. We had a mutual understanding. But that doesn't mean, he does not love his parents. He love them very much but he is just torn between his filial piety and his duties as a husband.

    As for my BIL........I don't really know what is on his mind. But very time when DH call's him to ask how is the search for a house is coming up...he just says that he doesn't have the money (he is working as a teacher). The property prices in Singapore are currently very high. Hence, getting my PIL a rental flat in the open market is just gonna be so expensive. Thats why we went to HDB (the govt here have houses for those who can't afford a home at a very cheap rate compared to the open property market) but they owe arrears for their previous house. Hence, they have to settle the amount owed before they can get a rental flat from HDB. If its a small amount, I don't mind settling it for them but is a 5 figure, which we can't afford.

    And both my PIL have health issues. They can't help me take of my son or help me out with the household chores. Now with my maid gone, I got to send my son to my mum's place in the morning and fetch him home after work everyday. Its really taxing, and on top of that both DH and I have got to do the household chores. That was why DH decided to put them in his grandmother's place temprorarily till we both can work out something for them. And since his aunty is staying with his grandmother, there's someone to look after them, in case any of them fall ill.

    This is to just answer some of your queries. But yeah, I do agree that I did not handle this issue at the best possible way I should have. But I was seriosuly at my wits-end and like they always say decison made in a haste will always be made to regret. And so here I am, regretting how things turned out. Which I seriously never intended for it to happen this way. I guess like what some of you mentioned here I'll try to maintain a amicable relationship with PIL and also help my husband in taking care of his parents.

    Thank you everyone.......my mind is alot more clearer now. And thanks Mathanggi, what you said is very true...."What ever you do others will blame for one or the other reason so do not worry about what others think about you or your DH". I'll definitely stick to that. :)
     
  8. asuitablegirl

    asuitablegirl Gold IL'ite

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    Wow, wish you had gone into more detail in your first post! I take back what I said about kidnapping your kid or leaving in a wrong way. Sounds like you discussed in a proper way and left (rather, just took a break) at your parents house in a proper way too.

    If I were in your shoes, I also would want to live seperate. Frankly, if I had the choice of living seperate but relatives frowning on me, or living jointly and relatives praising me..... I would 100% chose living seperate no matter what. Sometimes we have to pay a price for mental peace.
     
  9. Happysoul1234

    Happysoul1234 Gold IL'ite

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    Thanks for the additional explanations. Sounds to me like you behaved in a calm and rational manner throughout. Kudos!

    So you have 2 choices.

    1. Continue living with IL's at the sake of your mental peace. They will not change and you should not expect them to.
    2. Have them live separately and endure comments from extended family.

    I'd choose option 2. See people will talk no matter what you say or do. The more you try to explain yourself, the more they will assume you are guilty. So it's always better to just do what's best for you and your family and let people talk. Sooner or later, something new will happen elsewhere and they will start talking about that instead.

    Anyways, these talkers/commenters don't have to walk a day in your shoes. If they did, they would do what you are thinking to do in a heartbeat, without enduring the guilt pangs you are.

    So just go ahead and move them out, but make sure to visit them and let your kids/husband meet them on a regular basis. It's a good compromise all the way around.
     

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