Thursday, February 22, 2024

Mothers-in-Law From Hell.

May 20, 2023 by  
Filed under BM, News, Opinion, Relationships, Weekly Columns

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(ThyBlackMan.com) When you marry a woman, guys you marry into her family. Therefore, whether you like it or not, the mother-in-law is part of the package deal. But what you don’t marry into is a life of your wife’s mother making your life difficult much of the time and Hell the rest of the time. Of course she loves her daughter, wants to protect her and wants the best for her. That is completely normal. Any good mother would. But there is a big difference between a mother who wants what is best for her daughter and a nosey, intrusive, irritating, disrespectful mother-in-law from Hell. A huge difference.

But then there is the other side of the coin, the darker side. Where mothers-in-law are nosey, don’t mind there business when they should and want to tell you how to raise your children. When you despise  the holidays, birthdays and mother’s days when you have to see your mother-in-law and there is virtually no way to get around it. You know she is going to be difficult and down-right irritating. You know she will find something to say. But you have to be there because of your wife and/or kids. Stop the presses. A mother-in-law who does not respect the boundaries of your marriage is a mother-in-law who blatantly disrespects you and your marriage. And that cannot be allowed to happen. Ironically, if you stuck your nose into her relationship, she would be quick to tell you to stay out of it. Hypocrisy.

Black Man and Mother-In-Law.

When you and your wife disagree, her mother does not say what is right. She assumes her daughter is right and that you are as wrong as the big bad wolf and his brother. So your mother-in-law is a big part of the reason your wife never sees herself in the mirror. And that same mother-in-law, if the mother-in-law from Hell, is coming up with solutions for your wife that one day may NOT include you.

So what is a guy to do? You talk to your wife about the problem, hoping she will step up and address the issue with her mom. But what if she instead says “that is my mother and I am not going to tell her anything”?  What if your wife repeats the mother-in-law from Hell national anthem which is “men will come and go but your mama will always be there for you so don’t put no man ahead of your mama”? On that I have to agree with God about the order of the family, not any mother-in-law.

And if your wife does speak to her mother about the problem, you can expect your mother-in-law to retaliate by making it seem like YOU are the problem. You ask your own mom what you should do, but her answer is largely biased and likely to be advice which says confront your mother-in-law head on. Yet you have to realize that approach can pour gas on the fire while the wind is blowing in your direction. You ask your dad or other men, only to find they have been through the same chaos or they are going through it at the same time you are.

When you tell and teach your children one thing, you find out later that the seemingly innocent visit with your mother-in-law came with a package of her neutralizing what you have told YOUR own kids. Even in front of you, your mother-in-law countermands your position as head of household and how you discipline your children. You have tried to say nothing and suck it up, but that is not working either. Now you are even more frustrated and you need to find a solution before the lid blows off. And God forbid that your mother-in-law lives with you and your wife. What do you do? What can you do? What should you do?

Here is what you need to know. If you as the husband cannot be the head of the household (leader, not ruler), you don’t need to be there. The marriage covenant does NOT include your mother-in-law nor your mother either. So you will have to take a balanced approach to fix this problem. Start by having a long talk with your wife about her mother, boundaries, respect and what needs to be done. Ask your wife’s input and listen. But let her know that her mother’s behavior towards your household is unacceptable. Have some testicles or go buy some. Just remember, your wife will feel like she is stuck in the middle. And in many cases, the wife will take her mother’s side. Don’t be surprised, but if that happens, you and your wife need to reset the order of the household, that you must come before ALL others in her life and that she must come before ALL others in yours. So make sure you are displaying that example when it comes to your mother, your ex, your family and your friends. You do not want hypocrisy to be the example you set.

Still, as the head of your household, you should NEVER be made to feel small or second in your wife’s life. Your children must listen to you and your wife before they listen to anyone else. Even if you have to correct them in from of your mother or mother-in-law and tell the in-laws and outlaws to stay out of it. If you don’t take a stand early, by the time you decide to, the wrong order has been set up as a foundation. A foundation that has now become difficult to tear down.

Next, if you don’t see any MAJOR changes, hopefully after your wife speaks to her mom, you need a third party to hear what is happening. A pastor, a counselor or marriage and family therapist. Your wife needs to be there too. And whatever you do, make sure you select a balanced counselor who can see the problems objectively. If you pick the wrong type of counselor, everything can get even worse. Also ask others to observe her at family events. People who act unseemly don’t always like that side of them to be seen in public.

I say this as a current Advanced Life Coach and former marriage, relationship and financial counselor. All counselors are not created equal. Many are biased, have only book knowledge (not a gift for what they do), fail to follow up with clients as often as they should and cannot even live their own lives in good relationships. Some of them do not listen very well And many of them have tunnel vision solutions – focusing on theology, psychology or sociology, but not knowing when to mix these and when not to. Choose your counsel wisely and make sure you and your wife are meeting him or her TOGETHER. All this counseling each of you separately when your mother-in-law is the problem only blocks you from knowing what the counselor is telling your wife. Not good.

I cannot tell you everything you should know in one article. But I can say this article is a start, a step in the right direction on an issue that MUST be resolved. So get to it because the problem is not likely to go away by herself. And if you wife cannot clearly choose you over her mother, she should have married her mother.

Staff Writer; Trevo Craw

A Free Thinker, who loves to talk about PoliticsReligion, etc. Also, all about uplifting the Black Community even if it doesn’t fit your mindset. One may hit me up at; TrevoCraw@ThyBlackMan.com.


Comments

2 Responses to “Mothers-in-Law From Hell.”
  1. Andrea Robinson says:

    I fell this! My husband has always had a thing about my parents. Although they have lived up north until moving to Alabama in the last 4 years and we reside in Texas, he always seems bother by them. I’ve been married for 21 years and been with my husband for 25. The visits to my hometown has been very few and in between however, they would come visit or sometimes we would meet in mutual areas. My father passed last year so my mother has been trying to sell her home for the past 6 months and move to Texas. She is still quite independent; however, I can tell that a lot of wear and tear is upon her where she is starting to fall and forget things. I wanted to bring her here to help keep an eye on her. She may need to stay in our home for a few weeks until we find a home for her. I am nervous that my husband will feel uncomfortable for the entire time. She stayed with us for 3 months when I first had my son 17 years ago and my husband thought it was a total disaster. We always knew that we would be the siblings of our family that would have to respond respectfully when it comes to our parents in their fragile stages of life, but I want to ensure my family is maintain its peace and serenity. I don’t want my husband to feel uncomfortable in his own home. My mother is not the one to get all in your business, heck, they team up on me when we all come together anyways. I guess it’s the fact of her being there what has me so nervous. I love his parents and being that we are closer to them it was easier for me to earn the respect as respect was given, but to feel that they are welcome without me feeling uncomfortable. I am praying diligently that everything goes smoothly, and we can stick it out until she finds her happiness in her own living quarters as well.

    • Trevo Craw says:

      I am an advanced life coach, so I do have some experience in these areas. First of all, thank you for responding. Second of all, thank you for you and your husband being very big to step up and take care of her. It is the right thing to do but not without difficulty. If she is respectful and a sound mind, would you and your husband want to do it to lay down some ground rules. Stick to them. Never let her divide you because you must come first in front of everybody as his wife and he must come first as your husband, not your mother. She is not in the marriage covenant. If, and when there are problems, and they will be, you and your husband are going to have to talk those out and communicate, then approach her with a unified front, with patience, and with love, at least initially. If she keeps doing the same thing, is a matter of disrespect, and you and your husband will have to address her on a different level. Hopefully it won’t come to that, but it probably will at some point. Best wishes.

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