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SnoBaby

My First Trip To The Mil's Since Diagnosis

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Thank you, each of you, for taking the time to respond with your individual perspectives. I truly appreciate it. I think there are overlapping issues to consider from last week, from my husband's passivity in not informing his mother before we arrived, to the fact that I did not speak up as soon as I was being treated in a manner I wasn't comfortable with. It's given me a lot to think about, and it has helped me to process my feelings, so I can begin to move on from them and make behavioral changes in myself such as requiring people to respect my boundaries (even if I am a guest in their home).

Thank you.

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I agree that your husband should have told his mother about your diet needs long before you got there. And I agree that she was probably taken aback by suddenly having to deal with it.

BUT! -- I totally disagree with how she responded. I was having a flashback to my MIL and the very first time we visited her after we'd had our first child. He was maybe seven or eight months at the time. Eating solid food but still in the baby food stage. We showed up and I had a small bag of things we'd brought for the baby that needed to be refrigerated. Her first words to me were "I hope that doesn't need to go in the refrigerator." um.. okay.

Seems to me that when you have guests in your house who have some special diet need -- a baby, or celiac, or diabetes, whatever -- you say "here, use this shelf for your things. Is that enough room?"

She didn't do it in the room where we stayed either. We lived out of our suitcases for a week because she couldn't clear out even half a drawer (of her sewing stuff) for us to use. -- Next time we visited with a toddler she said right away "I hope he won't break anything." Well...I'll do my best but could you be the least bit accommodating and move the *glass* figurines from the coffee table while we're here? You know, the coffee table that's just right at ds's level. :angry:

Anyway, sorry didn't mean to sidetrack the thread. :) On paper those comments that you've written don't sound too bad, but it's the tone that tells the true meaning. And making guests feel welcome. Which is sounds like she did not do.

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I agree that your husband should have told his mother about your diet needs long before you got there. And I agree that she was probably taken aback by suddenly having to deal with it.

BUT! -- I totally disagree with how she responded. I was having a flashback to my MIL and the very first time we visited her after we'd had our first child. He was maybe seven or eight months at the time. Eating solid food but still in the baby food stage. We showed up and I had a small bag of things we'd brought for the baby that needed to be refrigerated. Her first words to me were "I hope that doesn't need to go in the refrigerator." um.. okay.

Seems to me that when you have guests in your house who have some special diet need -- a baby, or celiac, or diabetes, whatever -- you say "here, use this shelf for your things. Is that enough room?"

She didn't do it in the room where we stayed either. We lived out of our suitcases for a week because she couldn't clear out even half a drawer (of her sewing stuff) for us to use. -- Next time we visited with a toddler she said right away "I hope he won't break anything." Well...I'll do my best but could you be the least bit accommodating and move the *glass* figurines from the coffee table while we're here? You know, the coffee table that's just right at ds's level. :angry:

Anyway, sorry didn't mean to sidetrack the thread. :) On paper those comments that you've written don't sound too bad, but it's the tone that tells the true meaning. And making guests feel welcome. Which is sounds like she did not do.

This post makes me wonder if perhaps you are my SIL and I didn't know you were on this board...(JK) But this sounds a lot like my MIL. SAME experiences, esp the "Hoping the visiting toddler didn't touch anything at her eye level"

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I think you found the problem yourself - you came and disrupted her routine without ANY word or notification. Honestly, I'd be a bit put out too if someone came and expected something very different without even mentioning it. (And you were expecting a big change in *her* routine even if just in "invading" her kitchen with a bunch of your supplies.)

Did she handle it poorly? Absolutely. And it's fair to feel hurt by what she said! But I think you guys didn't handle it well too. (Seriously, YOU could have called and told her. It's a pet peeve of mine to expect only the biologic child of a parent to interact with the parent for the whole family.) So, and this is totally my own opinion and I understand if you don't agree with it, you should call her, apologize for not giving advance notice, and explain that her comments hurt your feelings, but you also understand that it was a big change for her routine. Ask her and discuss with her how you two can make it work better next time.

I want to clarify one point. It's not that I 'expcted' my husband to communicate this to them so much as it was the fact that he was on the phone with them a few days before our trip, and when I walked in, he said, "Mom wants to know what you need from the store." I interpreted this to mean he had told her about my being gluten-free and she wanted to stock up on my needs. I told him to let her know we would do a grocery run ourselves and not to worry about it. (Having said this, could she really have been so put out by my need for shelf space?) I realize I could have done more to make sure she was informed. I don't remove myself from all responsibility, but I made some assumptions based on that information and the conversation 'I thought' he had with them.

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Oh man this thread just made me realize our trip to the in-laws' this summer is going to be more complicated than usual. We (me, hubby, and two picky kids) are vegan and my MIL already cooks vegan food for us, which is so sweet of her. I can't expect her to now cook separate vegan gluten-free meals for me now too. I don't know what I'm going to do...

I guess I'll go to the grocery store when I get there and tell her I'll make my own meals. I just hope I don't accidentally eat any gluten while I'm there since that would mean I'd have to stay close to the bathroom. (We usually do a lot of outdoorsy stuff while we're there like hiking and going out on the lake.) I'm getting anxiety just thinking about it... Ugh.

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I think you found the problem yourself - you came and disrupted her routine without ANY word or notification. Honestly, I'd be a bit put out too if someone came and expected something very different without even mentioning it. (And you were expecting a big change in *her* routine even if just in "invading" her kitchen with a bunch of your supplies.)

Did she handle it poorly? Absolutely. And it's fair to feel hurt by what she said! But I think you guys didn't handle it well too. (Seriously, YOU could have called and told her. It's a pet peeve of mine to expect only the biologic child of a parent to interact with the parent for the whole family.) So, and this is totally my own opinion and I understand if you don't agree with it, you should call her, apologize for not giving advance notice, and explain that her comments hurt your feelings, but you also understand that it was a big change for her routine. Ask her and discuss with her how you two can make it work better next time.

I tend to agree. Also speaking as someone who keeps a seriously packed fridge and has little kitchen space I would have a really hard time finding room if a guest came with bags of groceries and I wasn't prepared! So yes, your MIL could have been more sensitive but really the whole gluten CC issues is kind of a big deal and someone should have given her a heads up.

Maybe I'm just cutting her some slack because recently my own MIL made apple turnovers knowing I couldn't eat them and then sat right beside me eating going on and on about how good they were. I'm talking long drawn out yuuummms. I was biting my tongue...HARD. lol

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