“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#1 Dec 16, 2013
DEAR AMY: My boyfriend and I have been happily living together for almost two years.

We moved in together early in our relationship to pursue our educations in the same city. We are in our mid-20s and felt that we were old enough to take this "risk." It has worked out well for us.

Upon announcing our decision to his family, we were not met with much acceptance. His mother quickly turned on me, calling me "manipulative" and "controlling" and began spreading hurtful lies about me to other family members.

My boyfriend confronted his mother. She agreed to a fresh start. We occasionally attend his family gatherings, but these are extremely awkward for me. I feel as though his mother still dislikes me, and she shows it. For instance, I have special dietary needs. She says she is more than willing to accommodate, but then she doesn't (despite reminders), leaving me unable to eat meals served at her home.

I am at the point that I don't want to attend these gatherings. My boyfriend really wants me to have a relationship with his family, but I am finding it increasingly difficult. With the holiday season around the corner, I am at a loss for what I should do! Ideas?-- Stuck

DEAR STUCK: Your boyfriend's mother may have promised a fresh start, but so far this seems to herald nothing more than a shift in tactics -- away from her more obviously aggressive maneuvers and toward a more passive guerrilla-style engagement. If you want her to "win" this war, then by all means, stay home. This is probably exactly what she wants.

One more course correction might be effective. This is where her son says: "Mom, really. If you're going to invite us over, it would be great if you could also serve something my girlfriend can eat. If you can't or don't want to do this, we'll bring our own food. But don't be insulted when we do."

Your own behavior while you're with her should be above reproach. Enter the house assuming that things will go well. Also, return the hospitality by inviting his family to your home. That'll show her.

DEAR AMY: I often host other mothers and their children in my home. The mothers chat while the kids play.

My house is very kid-friendly, and I don't mind the kids making a mess as long as they are having fun. We enjoy it.

I am trying to teach my sons that when you are the host, it is your job to make sure your guests have a great time and you will clean up the mess after they leave. I don't feel guests should have to pick up the toys before leaving. I want the kids to associate our house with fun.

We have an organized system for how the toys are stored. Unfortunately, there are several mothers who insist on making the kids clean up before they leave. I tell them they don't need to pick up the toys, but they ignore me. So then the kids and mothers start throwing all the toys into bins and containers, which mixes everything up and messes up our organization system, creating more work for us.

What is the best way to handle this? Am I wrong for asking them not to pick up?-- Let Them Play

DEAR LET: You should support other parents' efforts to promote respectful and responsible children by making it easier for them to participate in the cleanup. You sound like a very hospitable and organized person, so use these traits to everyone's advantage. Supervise some easy kid-sized cleanup that works with your system -- and stop judging other parents (and children) for behaving well.

DEAR AMY: "Resentful" was taking care of her fiance's incontinent dog and resented it. This broke my heart. This is a condition that can be treated, and I cannot believe their selfishness in not pursuing treatment.-- Dog Lover

DEAR LOVER: "Resentful" thought this question was about her boyfriend, but I think it's about the dog. This couple could be charged with animal cruelty and neglect. Plus, it's just wrong.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Silver Spring, MD

#2 Dec 16, 2013
1- She blames you for turning her son gay

2- Pull the dam stick out

“Where is Tonka?”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#3 Dec 16, 2013
1 Amy blew it! The mother is right.

2 Your pizzed because these other moms are messin with your system. Well, if you teach them the system, then everything will be cool.

3 It was the husband being resentful of taking care of his wife's fiance's dog.
liner

Brooklyn, NY

#4 Dec 16, 2013
L1: She probably will only eat goat toenail pie. Stay home.
L2: OCD?

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#5 Dec 16, 2013
L1 If you invite them over, keep it to cake and coffee. Otherwise she will get indigestion or food poisoning and blame you.

L2 Amy' answer is good; Edog's response is better

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#6 Dec 16, 2013
LW1: Are you sure you want a MIL like this? If that's where the relationship is headed, your bf needs to tell his mom to act like an adult. If she keeps it up, both of you should stop attending her parties.

LW2: I bet if you took a moment to explain to the kids and moms what your system was, they'd do a pretty good job of getting things put away the way you want them.

Our little downstairs neighbor girl comes up and tears our place apart. I finally told the kids if she comes up, you're responsible for putting away what she takes out. Now they put a limit on how much they'll let her dump out. She never gets mad about it, probably because it's coming from them.

LW3: Of course it's about the people, Amy you dolt! The dog cannot take itself to the vet.
Kuuipo

Marina, CA

#7 Dec 16, 2013
LW1: Team squishymama. BF's mom sounds like one of those "no woman is good enough for my son" moms. You have three choices.

1: Go to all the parties, bring your own food, and be phony-nice to her. Let everything she says and does roll off of you like water off a duck's back and do not give her the power to upset you. Basically Amy's approach.

2: Allow your boyfriend to go to the parties without you, stay home and watch a chick flick or read a book.

3: Both your boyfriend and you stay away from her gatherings.

You might try #1 first and fall back to #2 or #3 if you can't get that Zen about hanging with her. How often are these "occasional" gatherings? If it's once every 3 months or less, go and fake it for a couple of hours.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Silver Spring, MD

#8 Dec 16, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
go and fake it for a couple of hours.
Some people refuse. Everything must be catered around their level of comfort.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#9 Dec 16, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
Some people refuse. Everything must be catered around their level of comfort.
Would you expect the mom to fake it if the gf treated her the same way? Promised to have food she could eat, but consistently failed to deliver. Spread hurtful lies about her. Accused her of being a controlling and manipulative mother. Should mom just suck it up and just let it roll off her back?
Blunt Advice

West New York, NJ

#10 Dec 16, 2013
1. Squishy and Kuippo nailed this. #2 also.
Kuuipo

Marina, CA

#11 Dec 16, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
Some people refuse. Everything must be catered around their level of comfort.
I often quote my mother, "You're going to have to learn to work with all kinds of people in this world." The same goes for people outside of work. Learning how to deal with difficult people is a useful life skill, because sooner or later, you're going to meet one or two. I don't think blowing off your boyfriend's mother without making a strong effort to play nice is a good idea. But if she insists on being a batch and girlfriend can't hang, she always has the option of staying away.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#12 Dec 16, 2013
Mister Tonka wrote:
Would you expect the mom to fake it if the gf treated her the same way? Promised to have food she could eat, but consistently failed to deliver. Spread hurtful lies about her. Accused her of being a controlling and manipulative mother. Should mom just suck it up and just let it roll off her back?
Why do you often try to change the letter to suit your own arguments?

"We occasionally attend his family gatherings, but these are extremely awkward for me. I feel as though his mother still dislikes me, and she shows it."

Wah wah wah, it's all about HER.

They can BOTH fake it, how's that?

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#13 Dec 16, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
<quoted text>
I often quote my mother, "You're going to have to learn to work with all kinds of people in this world." The same goes for people outside of work. Learning how to deal with difficult people is a useful life skill, because sooner or later, you're going to meet one or two. I don't think blowing off your boyfriend's mother without making a strong effort to play nice is a good idea. But if she insists on being a batch and girlfriend can't hang, she always has the option of staying away.
That's some good advice.

Maybe the LW SHOULD stay away... but then the mother wins. She should show up just out of spite. And she can bring her own goat toe nail pie if that's such an issue. Isn't it possible that the LW is just a PITA, and the mom just doesn't want to cater to her hippie whims?
cheluzal

Plant City, FL

#14 Dec 16, 2013
1: BF sounded like he was speaking up, but he can't have it both ways. The script for mom is wise, so start bringing your own food.
Either mom is a shrew who can't cut a cord, or you DID manipulate him into moving in for your benefit and mom saw through it...

2: Wait...you're upset because moms are teaching their children to pick up after themslves? Listen to you.....geez....

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#15 Dec 16, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
Why do you often try to change the letter to suit your own arguments?
"We occasionally attend his family gatherings, but these are extremely awkward for me. I feel as though his mother still dislikes me, and she shows it."
Wah wah wah, it's all about HER.
They can BOTH fake it, how's that?
I don't change it to suit my own arguments. I present and identical scenario to see if you are consistent in your pov. Whenever parents are concerned, you seem to give the older generation a pass on their bad behavior and act like the ones being treated poorly are whiners. F that. I just want to see if you are consistent or contradict yourself. If you feel its ok for the GF in this scenario to have to endure and humor being treated poorly,, disrespected, and really enduring hostile behavior, then you need to be ok if the roles were reversed. To coin Sub's favorite phrase, what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. I highly doubt you would put up with a potential wife of yours disrespecting your mother.

I can tell you right now, if my future in-laws were treating me with disrespect on a regular and consistent basis, it would not be tolerated. My future wife would have to lay down the law with her parents, figure out how to deal with the fact that I would never visit them, or have me end it with her. There is no way I would willingly subject myself to that nonsense and jut keep my mouth shut. Its not "about me". Its about me being treated with the same respect they would expect from me.

I don't grin and bear it when someone chucks a chair at my head. I've got more self respect than that.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#16 Dec 16, 2013
Mister Tonka wrote:
I don't change it to suit my own arguments. I present and identical scenario to see if you are consistent in your pov. Whenever parents are concerned, you seem to give the older generation a pass on their bad behavior and act like the ones being treated poorly are whiners.
But you're not presenting identical scenarios. A dude dating a black girl is not the same as a gay dude dating another man. A dude's girlfriend badmouthing his mother is not the same as a mom not wanting to cater to her son's gf's ridiculous requests . You see those as identical. I do not. You're trying to compare apples to potato chips and then call me inconsistent when I have a different opinion for each. Fail.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#17 Dec 16, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
But you're not presenting identical scenarios.
Yes, I am.
edogxxx wrote:
A dude dating a black girl is not the same as a gay dude dating another man.
Both scenarios involved parents who disapproved based purely on their own prejudice.
edogxxx wrote:
A dude's girlfriend badmouthing his mother is not the same as a mom not wanting to cater to
her son's gf's ridiculous requests .
I never said those were.
What IS identical is what *I* presented.

What mom is doing: "His mother quickly turned on me, calling me "manipulative" and "controlling"
What I suggested as like treatment: "Accused her of being a controlling and manipulative mother"

What mom is doing: "began spreading hurtful lies about me to other family members."
What I suggested as like treatment: "Spread hurtful lies about her. "

What mom is doing: "For instance, I have special dietary needs. She says she is more than willing to accommodate, but then she doesn't (despite reminders), leaving me unable to eat meals served at her home.
What I suggested as like treatment: "Promised to have food she could eat, but consistently failed to deliver."

No one is suggesting that mom is a bitch for not catering to the gf's diet. She's a bitch for promising to do so, then not following thru. But you probably think someone claiming to have a specific food allergy is just a whiner that needs to suck it up. Tell that to my wife who ended up in the hospital twice unable to breathe because of an allergic reaction to a dish she did not know had something she's allergic to.
edogxxx wrote:
You see those as identical. I do not.
you have the reading comprehension of a doorknob and therefore have zero clue of what I am comparing.

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