Create or destroy- power of MIL.

Before I write anything , let me confess its stupid me who has given her rights to play with my emotions, or I have still no excelled the art of ignoring. The one and only reason being “Bunty”.

Now that hubby is returning back to India, I am not sure if I need to be happy or sad. I know I am thinking too much, but I can’t stop myself from foreseeing the trouble which would come when hubby is going to stay with us.


I think a couple shares the responsibility of sharing the work in household. But in my case as I am away from hubby, need to mange everything.

I have to do regular stuff like others, paying bills( rent, milk wala, electricity, internet, landline, mobile, cable, watchman etc etc), buying grocery, cooking and cleaning the house. I also run behind banks, finding the best interest rates, taking loans, repaying them, discussing about it with hubby. I need to save, buy gold, property, and make investments in short. I need to think of tax savings, policy’s, premiums too. I need to keep track of Bunty’s health, vaccinations, regular check-ups.  In between had to learn driving as I couldn’t run, share autos, or take buses. I had to go and visit so many secondhand car dealers, see cars, bargain, take them to car technicians and finally bought one. As if all this is not enough, take MIL and Bunty out on every weekend, to park, mall or exhibition or anything they demand.

I have to cook. Mil had stopped cooking long back. I make a breakfast( proper south indian onces like idili, dosa, pongal, upma etc etc),chutney, dry curry, rasam, dal everyday. I also make sure I give something extra to eat every day. Say sweet potato, sprouts, or fruits and fresh home made juice.

I also work at office. i.e. deadlines, discussions and being an Architect I am asked to be creative. This drains half my energy.  keep in touch with ex-colleagues, remember b’days and wish all, send cards etc etc.

Once back home, cook rice for Bunty, and make tiffin for MIL and me. Feed Bunty, play with her, read stories for her,at times even give her bath . finally put her to sleep. And the routine follows. ( cant imagine doing homework with her when she goes to school).

Doing all these doesn’t pain me. The only things hurts me is after I all these, even if I don’t get appreciation, I don’t feel bad. But MIL complains to hubby that I am not taking care of her, and he stays countries away and scolds me on phone without knowing the truth. I feel hurt.

I don’t mind her telling around people, that she takes good care of her Bunty, does everything and forced to stay away from Chennai because of my work , and bitch about me as I am her DIL etc etc. I am hurt when she blackmails that she would leave me and go if I don’t treat her properly.

I don’t mind getting up extra hour before or sleeping an hour late and cleaning things when maids don’t turn up, or save extra money and buy her saree instead of buying something for me. I am hurt when she says that her son would leave me if she tells the truth about me( god only knows what is that). I am hurt that, after all I do everything, she keeps telling people that I treat her like maid.

Please someone tell me, what else I need to do, to make this DIL-MIL relation work?

Now that I have poured my heart, I am feeling light. What else to do, when my own ego stops me from crying.

27 thoughts on “Create or destroy- power of MIL.

  1. Drama queen MILs are India’s contribution to global society and culture. Sorry to be flippant, but I’ve had enough of these silver-haired sari-clad tyrants. Everytime I see a little old lady, I imagine what havoc she unleashes in her son’s life. 🙂

    Your MIL is probably frustrated insecure and emotionally immature. There’s nothing you can do to change her. The best you can do is limit your interactions with her and minimise her influence on your family’s life. Such people are toxic and are beyond reason or help

  2. Stand up for yourself, don’t take nonsense from anyone. They won’t respect you ever. People like your MIL will never change. Make life changes on that assumption. I don’t agree with comments that say your husband will “see” things eventually. No, he won’t. He scolded you in spite of knowing about things. That is not the mark of a person who eventually will “see”and understand things.
    Sorry for giving you a reality check.I have been there,done that. ONLY in movies do people understand sacrifice done by the heroine and change drastically and everything ends happily ever after. In real life, they all take advantage of the one who is docile till the day you or they die. So stand up for yourself, NOW.
    Momofors has given you good advice.

    1. Ok, I might be a bit harsh but I fully agree with Shail. We are missing the point if we say that you should just show him all the work you do and he will understand when he sees. Makes it sound like he is the boss, you and MIL are employees competing in sacrifices/ manipulation to find favour with him. I agree with Shail that the martyr approach only works in movies. This is not about your husband, this is about you. I’m not saying it’s his fault, just bringing up the dynamics going on here. 🙂

      Him seeing and understanding things will not and should not matter here. If he suspects you are genuinely harassing his mother, then there are deeper trust issues here and you need to talk through those first. If he generally trusts you wouldn’t do that, then he needs to stop acting like your supervisor with respect to MIL.

      I suspect her ‘I can make my son leave you..’ threats are rooted in this chain of command that is operating here. She sees that she can go around you and complain to her son and he will discipline you. If his mother cries to him, he needs to ask her to sort our her issues with you personally. He can check with you what the situation is, but not interfere (not scold you, scolding in private will still upset you and affirm the chain of command). If this becomes you Vs MIL with him as the judge, it will never end because he can’t be objective about either of you. Also it takes power away from you and you then need to hope that he will ‘see’ how much you do. She sees him as the person she has to be good to and not you because she can achieve her means by going around you. The buck should stop with you. This needs you and husband to trust each other.

  3. I’m sorry, Ashreyamom, that you have to go through so much despite doing all that you can. I know its easy to advice you to ignore your MIL’s taunts and threats. I’d also suggest you to share your concerns with your husband and make him see the truth. As long as you have your husband beside you believing in you I’m sure your MIL would also realize the uselessness of fabricating all those lies about you to her son.

    Take care, and stay positive.

  4. I think you have to set boundaries here – just do what you feel like and ignore the rest. And stop giving her importance. If hubby comes and takes her side, put your foot down firmly and tell him he is here only for a short time, and so should keep his nose out of the business and she has to learn to deal with you. Unless she knows that the buck stops with you, she will not behave well with you. Take power, grab it and make it yours. She will back off pretty fast once she senses she cant pit you and husband against each other

  5. Goodness Woman!! Are you human or a robot! The things you do!!
    I’m terribly rankled by your MIL’s behavior, but this is characteristic of most women of her generation. The best way to improve relations with her is to remove the dependency on her. If your daughter is not too young, I would advise you to keep her in a day-care. Believe me, kids enjoy a lot there, with other kids their age and size. Your MIL is not contributing much towards you or your child’s care, so her presence OR absence should not make much of a difference.
    Plus, I think she clearly believes that you should be around to take care of her! Since you are also a working woman, this is next to impossible. Next time she mentions she will pack up and leave, lift your chin and say,”Jaisi aapki marzi”.
    Okay, that sounded a bit filmi 😀 …..but seriously…Its my personal experience that my relations with my in-laws improved when they didn’t feel that we need them as maids to manage my kids. Earlier I had a full-time maid to look after the twins, after which I put them in day-care.
    And I can tell you….my kids are doing just fine 🙂
    Chin-up, cheer up. This is just a phase….either fight it out or wait for it to pass by.
    All the best and warm hugs to you.

  6. Hugs AM!!

    Can you show your hubby this post? Listen to his reaction and state that if MIL is complaining even if you are doing everything that is possible, what is to be done. When he is back, back biting will still occur.So the best thing is to keep him in the know of what is happening here. Once he understands that you are not wrong, ignore whatever MIL says.

  7. Hugs my dear, well it is definitely not easy to suggest you anything here. Please ignore and let these things don’t come between you and hubby and your relationship. I am sure things will be better when he is around.

    Is there any way for you to manage work and Bunty without her? Is there an option to send her to preschool/day care or have a nanny. May be MIL thinks she is doing you a favor by staying with you and taking care of Bunty. What I have learned in my experience is if I can manage my life, work, kid etc without anyone’s help it easy. I know I end up working a lot but I don’t have to make anyone else happy than myself..

  8. You have got a very manipulative MIL, just like my granny. She was so nice loving and caring to us, I really was shocked to see how bad an MIL she was, when I stayed with my uncle and aunty for my studies in B’lore. Now she doesn’t like me too because I always opposed what she was doing t her DIL, my aunty.
    I hope once your hubby is back he will see for himself what’s happening. If we complain, they see it as only witching MIL because we don’t like her. The best option is to let him see for himself. Give some time to him to realize it and even then if he is blindly on his mother’s side, you have to speak out and make things clear.

  9. hugs am.. yes learning to ignore is the best way… learn to ignore and do your duties.. your husband will understand the truth once he sees all this in person.. cheer up lady.. hugs again..

  10. Your MIL sound very much like my own in laws. They treated me like a maid but claimed that I was treating them as such! Funny people!

  11. A tight hug for you AM. It is a very difficult situation. But I think once your hubby will be here, he will see for himself how you take care of all the things. I would suggest talking openly with your husband about this because he needs to see both sides of the coin and not what your MIL is showing him.

  12. Hugs AM. I can understand your plight as I too have a MIL who does a lot of back biting. I have learnt to ignore her so as AV. I’m sure once your husband is back and stays with you, he will understand what is right from wrong. Till then just vent it out here and we are all there for you. Hugs.

  13. Tight hugs A!!! I am sure your hubby sees it himself about his mom when he starts living with you. I dont know how some MILs can be so bad like this. How can she say you havent been taking care of her, when you are running behind every task at home and outside. So so bad! 😦 Oru manasakshi illa, cha! Not your mistake, so dont you worry. Everything would be alright with your hubby at home, she cant play her dramas. Take care A, hugs again!

  14. Sigh!!! I understand your pain!!! It is not doing that much that hurts what hurts is that u r being taken for granted. not only that despite doing all that is possible & not possible u still get to here “u don’t don’t do anything”!

    I hope ur hubby sees the truth and juts doesn’t believe in hearsay. Once he moves back I am sure things improve.

    Why don’t you let go of yourself and cry when u r alone (if you are alone)? It will help!!!

    *tightest possible hug*

    Chin up…this too shall pass!!!

  15. Hugs!! It must be such a tough situation for you. I think you need to have a talk with your husband, explain your situation. Once your husband stops taking her complaints seriously, it will be much better. As for her complaining to others, you can’t do much, but atleast if she understands that she can’t complain to your husband, things will be much better. Hugs!!

    1. hugs back .. thanks dear.. poor hubby, what can he do when she just cries when he calls..i just want to cry,cry out loudly.. for which i am not getting a chance.. :(..

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