Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Sister-in-law is driving me nuts

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Viewing 7 posts - 13 through 19 (of 19 total)
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  • #859055 Reply

    Ok, if she’s having literal freakouts and using your refusal to badmouth you, that’s more serious then her just expressing disappointment. I agree that from now on your husband definitely needs to handle her. If she tries to bait you into conversation via text then stay radio silent. Husband does all the communicating. And if you hear she’s been badmouthing you to family then your husband needs to stick up for you by calling her up, setting her straight, and telling her that if she won’t stop being hateful to his wife then he won’t be seeing her during the Christmas season at all.

    #859060 Reply

    I don’t get this statement at all:

    “The fact of the matter is, we are so far down the list in terms of who is really important in her life to spend Christmas with, why is she making such a big stink about it?!”

    It’s very presumptuous to assume you’re and your husband not important to her around the holidays. Her behavior has made it clear she enjoys your family’s presence during the holidays. Just because she’s low on YOUR list doesn’t mean it’s the same for her.

    #859063 Reply

    Nothing makes me happier to be Jewish/Christian intermarried than crap like this. My favorite was the year we decided to spend Christmas in the woods.

    Anyways, seems to me like a bunch of people refusing to be flexible and then fighting over it. You have to stay home EVERY year. Her granddaughter has to be with her father EVERY year. She can’t miss a Christmas with her granddaughter EVERY year. Any one of you could grow up and say “hey this year its alright if we do something different” but you don’t. Until you change something, nothing will change.

    #859073 Reply

    Those of you who said we are all being inflexible are right; at this point we are. I definitely don’t want to travel such a long distance in notoriously bad weather with young children, and there is no way she will miss the time on Christmas with her grandchildren, nor should she, if that’s what she wants. Which leads into my next reply regarding my assumptions about who’s really important to her during the holidays. She has made it very clear that her daughter and granddaughters are the most important people to her in the world, and she will not miss out on that time with them. She also gets her husband, obviously, and her parents. Her past behaviour and comments demonstrate that these people are non-negotiables. That’s 6 people she absolutely can’t have Christmas without. Judging by that, how many other extended family members is she allowed to demand that time of year, and how important could they possibly be? She can’t possibly pretend, nor would she, that we are as important as her children and grandchildren. I don’t speak for everyone, but my kid(s) and husband are the most important people in the world to me and are my non-negotiables at Christmas. I don’t feel entitled to demand or expect anyone else’s presence, not even my parent’s.
    And a word on her disability; she has an issue with her back but is still very mobile; rides a motorcycle and does most things, but she does have bad days. It is a condition that will worsen. Perhaps in later years when my kids are older I’ll feel more up to travelling but for now I have no interest.
    Thanks again for the good advice and kind words, it means a lot. And for the questions; I don’t want to be unreasonable and it’s sometimes hard to see other’s points of view when you’re in it.

    #859074 Reply

    Sorry, double post.

    #859253 Reply

    Sometimes being flexible is too much, especially when children are very young and the drive is too far and your parents would be excluded.

    Do the best you can for now with the idea that in the future things may change.

    #870261 Reply

    Your husband should be leading all discussions with her.

    Have you ever considered doing a summer trip with his parents to her house? A new tradition perhaps around a summer birthday or July 4th (if you’re in the US). Take a look to see if there are airbnbs midway between you and her that would fit the whole family. Let your husband bring the idea to his family.

    I don’t really get the craziness people put into Christmas but then again before the holidays a barista asked me if I was in the holiday spirit and I just responded “Well, I’m Jewish and child free – so I’m good.”

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