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Advice about MIL
October 11, 2012 at 11:24 PM

I was hoping for some feedback. I'm wondering how to respond to my MIL. I make jewelry and made her some earrings and she gave a couple of them away to someone who was visiting her. She messaged me saying "I hope you don't mind, etc". She's not a mean person but she does stupid things like this and doesn't understand how she alienates people. Last year my husband was deployed and I realized she was having a tough time so I sent her a long, very private letter about how I was dealing with him being gone and tips to help her cope. Then she sent the email without my knowledge to all of her siblings and my brother-in-law, which of course mortified me. How do you explain to someone that what they did is hurtful. I'm afraid it may be futile since my husband says she does this over and over and he's long given up trying to explain things since she doesn't listen and she goes and does what she wants anyway. I don't know how to explain it, but she doesn't seem to have a sense of privacy or self I guess. I give her something, she wants to continue giving, yet it's to people I don't know (the letter, the jewelry, and other small things). So do I ignore it and just don't give her any more jewlery ever again, do I say something to her, and how?


  • RLT2
    by RLT2
    October 11, 2012 at 11:27 PM

    Honestly, it sounds like she may be proud of you. She gave away the earrings, not to slight you, but because she was proud of what you made and wanted to show them off. Maybe she thought the letter was beautiful and well written, and wanted everyone to see it too. I'm not saying it's okay, but maybe her heart is in the right place.

  • cara124
    by cara124
    October 11, 2012 at 11:28 PM
    Just keep loving her & listen to your husband and just back off giving her things or sharing private things with her
  • Chellie13
    October 11, 2012 at 11:30 PM

    If even your husband says he's tried and gave up talking to her about it, I'd say let it go.  And don't give her anything that you wouldn't mind being given away.  She is who she is.  I'm sure you're not going to change her at this point in her life. 

    Good luck!

    ps: I would also have been very horrified over the letter.  I'm a rather private person and I've tried to open up to people only to have stuff repeated.  Makes me all the more private, and not so trusting anymore :-/

  • prieta05
    October 11, 2012 at 11:35 PM
    Listen to your husband and ignore her thats the best way you can avoid problems. She sounds toxic in a certain way that you actually dont wanna see it.
  • kirita323
    October 11, 2012 at 11:37 PM

    I know her hearts in the right place. She doesn't have a mean bone in her body. But what should I do still? Respond or don't respond. I don't plan on giving her things, especially things I work really hard on and barely have time to do with a busy toddler who also really likes beads. But do I explain to her anything? I explained last year about the letter because I was furious and had every right to be and haven't shared things with her since then. But it's been important to me to keep some sort of relationship with her so I kept giving gifts. Personally, I prefer to know if I've hurt someone in some way so I don't do it again. It hurts but it keeps from ruining relationships. I don't know if other people are that way though.

  • CoeyG
    by CoeyG
    October 12, 2012 at 12:26 AM

    What is stupid about her hoping you didn't mind that she chose to give something you gave her as a gift to someone else?  And what is the problem about her sending  something you sent to her via email to toher people in her family?  I'm trying to figure out why you have such a problem with your Mother In law.  She sounds like a very nice woman.  You need to learn that if you don't want other people to see what you put on the interent then don't put it there to begin with.  Once you send an email it is no longer in your possession.  Just like when you mail something to someone.  Once it reaches their mailbox it is there's they own it and they can do whatever they want to with it.  Also when you give someone a gift, you don't get to maintain control on what that person does with it, even if they get up and take it to the garbage.  Once you give it it is their's no longer your's.   

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