Thursday, August 16, 2012

Freaking NMIL...

All I can say is thank the Lord for the Zoloft that I started last weekend otherwise I'd likely be hella more pissed off than I am presently. Freaking NMIL.

NMIL had asked dh - she's always asking dh instead of going through ME despite the fact that I'M the one home with ds all day and in charge of his daily schedule - a few weeks back if it would be okay for her and NSIL (and NSIL's kid) to take ds to a local splash pad sometime. (In case anyone doesn't know what a splash pad is, it's a very shallow water recreation area that has a host of sprinklers and spouts coming up out of the ground for young kids to play in.) Dh ran it by me and we both told NMIL that it should be fine, just to check with us down the road whenever she decided on an actual day and time. So, last night ds is talking on the phone with NMIL and I overhear her telling him that she's going to take him to this splash pad place tomorrow. (Ds prefers to talk on speaker phone and I don't mind as it enables me to hear what the other person might be saying, this latest incident being a perfect example of why that might be necessary.) I had a couple issues with this:

1) No one had said anything to ME about it.
2) NM had already called and scheduled to come visit with ds today.
3) As far as I knew, NMIL hadn't said anything to my dh about this either and just went straight to ds first. Not cool.

So I said to ds - and NMIL who could hear me - that I wasn't sure if that would work as NM had already made plans to come visit ds the following day, etc. NMIL gets all pissy and says to just "let her know" and then adds that Wednesday was the best day for NSIL to do it. Of course there was obviously ZERO concern as to whether or not it was a good time for ME. As soon as ds hung up with NMIL, I went into dh's studio and asked him quietly if his NM had called him earlier that day and said anything about taking ds to the splash pad place the following day. He said yes, his NM had called him and that he had told her it should be okay but to call me first to make sure. Dh says he was very clear that NMIL needed to call and check with me first.

Understandably, I was PISSED. NMIL had manipulated things and now *I* was going to be in trouble with someone no matter what. If I told ds he couldn't go, then he was going to be upset and quite possibly resent me and NM for him not being able to go. If I let ds go, then not only did NMIL get that she could get away with manipulating things but NM would eventually find out that we'd let NMIL take ds to a splash pad place after telling her just a couple weeks ago that she could not. (For the record, the place NMIL took ds too was JUST a splash pad place whereas the place NM wants to take DS has a deeper pool very nearby. Dh and I both agree that unless one or both of us is there, we don't want ds in any pools or larger bodies of water.)

Dh said he was going to call his NM and "give her hell" about the whole thing. I suppose I should be glad that he at least saw something wrong with her behavior. Unfortunately, his "kid gloved" approach to "giving his mom hell" kind of killed any pride I might have felt in him for standing up to her. To be fair, he DID firmly reiterate that NMIL was to go through ME for all future scheduling of anything and chastised her (albeit extremely mildly) for leaving me out of the loop. NMIL claims it wasn't intentional and that she just hadn't called me that morning because she didn't want to wake me if I was still sleeping. Okay. Fine. But what about the other 8 hours or so she knew I'd be up? Better still, how about asking to speak to ME, as dh had instructed her to do, when she called last night before she went blathering to ds about taking him to a water park? No, NMIL knew EXACTLY what she was doing and no one will ever convince me otherwise. Of course, dh believes that it wasn't intentional. He agrees it wasn't right but still believes that his NM is this innocent dunderhead that would never intentionally manipulate the situation or do anything nasty. I, of course, know better. NMIL is, at BEST, extremely passive aggressive. At her worst, she's an N through and through.

As expected, NMIL was late to pick ds up this morning for their visit and was late bringing him home. She was short and clipped in speaking to me and refused to make eye contact. I could tell she was pissed at me, likely because she's sure *I* was the one that put dh up to calling her and chewing her out last night. Of course dh could never think to do such a thing on his OWN. I wasn't surprised that she brought ds home late. What would have shocked me was if she HAD gotten him home on time. But instead, to get back at me for having dh call her up and chastise her, she went all passive aggressive and decided she was going to make ds late for his visit with my NM at 2 o'clock. Bitch.

It wound up that, against my better judgment, we let ds go. I know, I know. But ds told me he really, really wanted to go and begged asked if it was okay and what can I say? - I love my ds more than I hate my NMIL. Am still pissed off majorly at NMIL though and am seriously contemplating saying something to her myself. I find it awfully 
telling that NMIL apologized to dh last night for what she did but said NOTHING to me the two times she came into the house today when she was picking ds up and dropping him off or when she called to tell ds goodnight just a bit ago. If she was sincerely sorry, wouldn't you think she'd apologize to ME, the one she wronged? So wish I could come up with some concrete proof instead of it always being her word against mine. 

On a bit of a side note, I would also like to see how dh would feel if the situation were reversed. Had it been the other way around and his NM had already made plans and then my NM pulled a stunt like this and I said it was okay and let ds go, how would he feel? I strongly suspect he'd be pissed and not at all okay with it. But, as is most often the case, when it's his NM, it's all good. It's always, "I'm sure she didn't mean it like that." He just refuses to see her as anything other than this naive, innocent person who doesn't have a mean or manipulative bone in her body. 
I'll give NMIL credit for one thing though, she certainly has FIL and her two boys fooled with her act.


  1. Ugh, DA, what a bunch of crap. I totally feel for you. I'm always stuck in the little war between my NMIL and NM who use me and my kids like pawns. What your NMIL did was completely not OK.
    And I also completely understand the "I'm sure she didn't mean it like that" crap. I had the exact same conversation with my DH last night. I'm blown away how often she pulls stuff like she did and he can't see any of it. And how it's always my word against her's and I'm just 'over-analyzing" things.
    She sounds like a bitch. Good luck.

  2. Ack I'm angry for you! NMIL managed a trifecta of getting her way, causing trouble for you, and one-upping NM. She's definitely playing your DH and using him as an unwitting ally in her crazy-making game.
    Since you can't do anything about her antics, do you think you might be able to head her off by redefining things with you and DH? If both of you agree to speak with one another before giving anyone an answer about invitations or plans, maybe you could avoid the "gosh I meant to call her" from NMIL. You could explain that with this approach, neither of you would ever have an issue with confustion over what NMIL thought was acceptable.

  3. Blech...I hate lose-lose situations. No matter what you do to set boundaries they will push them and then scream that you are being mean to them. I wonder if either NM wondered if they were doing what was best for your family instead of themselves?

  4. @ Ruth - MY NM actually called ahead of time and asked if the following day was good for her to come visit with ds. She has her moments but there's still some good behavior there. As for NMIL, she knew exactly what she was doing and since then, she's been all pissy and P/A. Typical. SHE slights ME and then is angry at ME when she gets called out on it!