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Woman cries after son calls his MIL 'mom'; son says 'she's more my mom than you were.'

Woman cries after son calls his MIL 'mom'; son says 'she's more my mom than you were.'


"AITA for crying when I learned my son call’s his in-laws 'mom' and 'dad' when he calls us, his own parents, by our names?"

My son has been referring to us by our first names, or otherwise sarcastically, as sir or ma’am since he was a teenager, and it is something I have always despised. I hoped he would outgrow this phase, but unfortunately, it has been his habit for over two decades.

My husband and I are on a cross-country trip and have stopped for a few days to visit our son and his partner. While we were present, they discussed their plans with his partner’s family in the area. My son asked his partner to 'let mom and dad know we’ll be over by 3 PM on Monday' about his partner's parents.

At first, I was in shock before the wave of emotions overtook me, and I started to cry. No one offered to comfort me for a while before my son-in-law asked me if I was okay or needed anything.

I decided to be open with them and explain how it hurt me that my son refuses to call me 'mom' but will happily do so to someone else. He even made a point to do so right before me. Meanwhile, my husband just decided to step outside because it's overwhelming for him when I cry.

My son just asked me to calm down and even felt it necessary to tell me I could either collect myself or otherwise we were free to leave. He seems to think I was so emotional as a ploy to manipulate him rather than honestly displaying how I feel. I don’t know what happened to my once sweet little boy.

OP posted an update:

I spoke with my son over the phone this morning to see if we are welcome back and to apologize and explain myself. He said he wasn't sure yesterday why I was crying because it seemed random, and he felt he was walking on eggshells with me.

I told him why I was so distraught that he insisted on calling me my name when he called his mother-in-law 'mom.' He just explained bluntly that’s what they are to him, and I asked him why we aren’t his mom and dad.

He said he couldn’t get into it right now, but if we were coming over, he gave me a time and said, 'We’ll discuss it later.' He learned that habit from his father, exact wording and all. In our family, that means let’s never discuss this again.

Here are some of the top comments:

DogsReadingBooks says:

IN/FO: what are the missing reasons? My gut feeling tells me you were homophobic when your son came out. Perhaps when he was a teen? When did this start?

DeliciousKitty2998 says:

YTA (You're the A%#hole). Here's the thing: there's a reason he calls you by your first name. And to keep it up for 20 years, not just in a moment of teenage attitude, means it is a big, important reason that would have been impossible for a healthy person to miss.

You need to stop having emotional outbursts (which everyone, even your husband, is clearly tired of) and honestly evaluate yourself. Get a professional (therapist) to help you dig through it all and to help you work on emotional regulation and self-awareness.

In the meantime, work to minimize the impact of your outbursts on other people. Don't wait for your husband to leave the room; leave before you start leaking. Take a walk, journal, quietly reflect, and return when you're ready to interact with people in a healthy way.

thektqt says:

YTA, it seems your crying episodes are frequent enough that your husband leaves to avoid dealing with whatever drama you’ve just instigated, and your son is over it and let you know to fix yourself or leave. Your outburst and over-the-top reaction probably took aback his partner. Stop asking others to validate you and make better choices.

Do we think OP was justified in being upset or is something missing in this story?

Sources: Reddit
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