Users in a popular internet thread gathered to recount their mother-in-law horror stories and how they went about setting strict boundaries.
The Quora thread titled, “When have you had to confront your mother-in-law and put your foot down, and how did you do it?” garnered more than 100 comments from users.
The thread can be found here.
A recent study published in the Evolutionary Psychological Science journal found that both men and women experienced more conflict with their mothers-in-law than with their actual mothers.
Oftentimes these conflicts are the result of in-laws crossing boundaries and feeling entitled to certain aspects of the relationship, whether that be their child or grandchildren.
One user recounted the first time she had to put her foot down with her mother-in-law. She said her first child was about 3-months-old and her mother-in-law was going to watch him for a few hours on Valentine’s Day.
“She had a large piece of solid milk chocolate & was going to give it to him,” the comment read. “I said ‘please do not give that to him, as I don’t want to be changing s**tty diapers for days’ she said fine I will feed it to him when you’re gone.”
The woman then told her she would not be allowed to babysit the baby if she was not willing to respect her rules.
“She was p**sed right off with me but it’s my child and she wasn’t willing to follow my rules about not feeding him chocolate at a few months old,” the user wrote.
Another user recounted the time their family transferred from the countryside to the suburbs for her husband’s job as a teacher.
They told his parents about the school and area they were renting and said she decided to visit the school and attempt to tour their future home.
“She knocked on the door and asked [if] could she look through the place. The landlord said no and then informed us and, boy, did I see red,” the comment read. “I wrote her a letter (we didn’t have a phone) and told her that she made her son look like an idiot who needs his mother’s help. I told her to butt out.”
A few weeks later, the woman said they bumped into her at a relative’s funeral and she blatantly ignored her 2-year-old grandson.
One commenter said that when she was pregnant, her mother-in-law would complain to people about how ultrasounds weren’t available when she was pregnant and that she wasn’t allowed to learn the baby’s sex but when the woman asked her to stop, she refused.
“The last time, she said this to a complete stranger she had just met. I just got up and walked out of the room and refused to come back in until she was gone,” the post read. “[W]hen I’d calmed down, with my husband’s blessing, I told her that if she did that one more time she would not hear from me or see me until after the baby was born.”
After the baby was born, she asked her mother-in-law to not smoke in the car when she had the kids with her.
“She promised up and down she never smoked around the kids. One day she took the baby and my oldest Christmas shopping and when they left I reminded her about not smoking in the car. When I got home from work my son came to me, p**sed off, and said ‘Grandma started smoking before we got to the freeway and told me not to tell you.'”
The woman said that was the last time her mother-in-law was allowed to be alone with the kids until she quit smoking a few years later.
But one commenter used the thread to positively reminisce on their mother-in-law.
“The closest thing we had to a confrontation was one time, when she was visiting, I arranged to pay for a meal that she had declared she was paying for. I thought I was being gallant,” the comment read. “She made it very clear that she did not appreciate my gesture and I was never to do that again. It was her foot that was put down, not mine, and quite firmly. She was quite dear and I miss her very much.”
Another man recently went viral on Reddit after sharing a sign he made to ensure his mother-in-law doesn’t enter his bedroom.
In another Reddit post, users criticized a woman for having “no boundaries” after her child-in-law took to the popular “Am I The A**hole” forum for advice.
One woman was praised in the same forum after recounting how she made her mother-in-law stay at a hotel after she requested to sleep in her and her husband’s bedroom.
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