Monday, August 27, 2007

Reflections on Relatives

This post is actually not about my mother! Can you believe it? Instead, it's about my MIL. (Can't get away from mothers of one kind or another, I guess.)

So I don't think it's necessary to go into the whole sordid situation here, but basically late last week--Thursday, I think--DH's sister called our house crying. I thought it had something to do with my dog--we have two dogs that we had given the ILs a year ago when we were in an apartment that didn't allow them, and MIL called Wednesday to say that one of them had died. Everyone is claiming not to know why, but it was obviously heatstroke due to negligence.

Anyway. SIL called crying, DH got home and called her back. Seems that MIL had, for some reason apparent to no one but herself, gone over to where SIL was and called her several names and said anything she could think of to hurt SIL. Including that she slept with SIL's boyfriend's dad. Why this was deemed to be hurtful to SIL I will never know.

So...DH calls MIL and leaves a very angry message, demanding to know why he's getting phone calls about her behavior, what the hell is she thinking, she needs to explain her actions, etc. He started out calm but he just kept getting angrier and angrier. Shockingly, the excessively needy MIL does not call back until Sunday night. She is incredibly rude to my mother, who answers the phone, and incredibly rude to DH. First she demands to know who is calling, then says she has told FIL everything and he's on her side. DH doesn't ask if she told him that she's going around bragging about cheating on him. He wishes he had. Then, she starts to tell DH "If you don't stop running your mouth..." At which point he cuts her off, says a certain rude two-word phrase, and tells her not to come up anymore. Then he hangs up on her. I'm about 100% sure we'll be getting a Crazy Letter (we've received them before) in the next day or two.

Hmm. Guess I did tell the whole sordid story anyway. But that wasn't the point of this blog. I was thinking after all this, and I've told DH this, but I think that they all need to cut ties with their mother. There is so much more going on than this--this is just the latest thing. My mother has had her share of crazy moments, but she has never actively tried to hinder the progress of any of her children. MIL has made children quit jobs, kept them from going to college, kept them from going to sports events that would have allowed them to excel in the field and probably get scholarships, pushed SIL (the same one) to have a baby at 18 before she was married instead of going to college...the list goes on. She has also gotten into physical altercations with at least two of her four children. I have told DH that I think she's jealous of her children. She herself is either a high school or junior high drop out. I don't think she wants her children to do better than that, even though all of them already have, and she's trying her best to keep them back.

We would all like to think that our relatives have only our best intentions at heart when they say or do things to us. We would especially like to believe this of our parents, namely our mothers, but sometimes that's just not the way it is. At that point, when you realize that that person is actively trying to hinder your progress in life, you should cut them out. It will be excessively hard if it's a parent, but it has to be done for your own sanity. What purpose is there in having them in your life? You know that they do nothing but hold you back, and you know that if they haven't changed over the last twenty or thirty years, it's not happening. That's just the way it is. If you realized that a food you were eating was poisonous, you would not continue to eat it. This is the same thing. She is leeching poison into her children and doing her best to rot them and make them shrivel up and die inside. Frankly, if I have anything to say about it, she will not be around my children anymore. She won't get her chance to poison them like she's poisoned the others. If they get rid of the poison now, they'll have a chance at recovery. If not, it'll ruin their lives.

Sorry if that seems a bit melodramatic, but it's the truth. I read a lot of self-improvement stuff, and the number one rule in almost everything is to surround yourself with helpful people that want you to succeed. MIL obviously doesn't want that for any of her children. Why I'll never know--I can't imagine ever doing the same thing to my children.

MIL almost got chewed out by my mother--MIL treated her like a secretary when she answered the phone and my mother almost did the same thing DH did--use a certain two-word phrase and hang up. My two sisters have been putting her in the middle of an argument about my youngest sister using her as a babysitting service when she "just needs a break," which is every other day; my older sister thinks this is ridiculous and doesn't hesitate to tell anyone, mother or younger sister included, and both of them rag on my mother for complaining or not complaining. Top it off with the fact that my brother called Sunday to tell her that he was shipping out for Iraq and it was about the worst day anyone could have picked to get an attitude with her.

I am fully expecting that MIL will show up at the boys' birthday party in three weeks. DH thinks she'll call up crying a few days before and beg to come up. I don't think so. I think there's a scene on the horizon, and I have no qualms about calling the police on such an occasion. I've done it before with others, I'll do it again with her. If it was at any time other than my children's birthday party, I'd be looking forward to it. It makes me sick that I could even imagine that she would do such a thing as ruin her own grandchildren's birthday party, just to be a vindictive witch.


kathyj333 said...

Is the MIL maybe bipolar? It kind of sounds like it to me.

Jessica said...

I've definitely considered that she has a chemical imbalance, and DH has mentioned the same thing. I don't think she would go get help even if someone did confront her with it. From her comments it seems that she thinks what she's doing is perfectly within her rights as a mother.