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SIL can't stop bragging and one-upping everything, 'I want to end this vacation early.' AITA?

SIL can't stop bragging and one-upping everything, 'I want to end this vacation early.' AITA?

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"AITA for wanting to cut a vacation short because my sister-in-law can’t stop bragging and one-upping everything?"

My husband and I have had a really tough year. My brother passed away, and my other brother, who is a mean alcoholic stole valuable items from my deceased brother’s house instead of putting them in the storage unit I had arranged for probate purposes.

On top of that, I lost my job, and we’ve been struggling financially. My sister-in-law invited us to stay with her for a week to relax and regroup. She lives about 500 miles away, and although we don’t talk much, she’s generally been kind. Given everything we’ve been through, we thought this would be a great chance to unwind.

The moment we arrived, she launched into an hour-long monologue about her job, how important she is, and how much everyone loves her. She’s very type A and passionate about her work, so I tried to be understanding. However, every conversation since then has revolved around her career or her wealthy friends.

We had to go for a ride in her new Porsche and visit her friend’s multi-million-dollar home. Then, it was off to another friend’s fancy restaurant where she spent the entire time talking about that friend.

She has steamrolled us into going places we don't want to go. We just wanted to relax at her house. She insists we go out, have dinners, lunches, etc. I even said "I'd rather go to XYZ" and she says "ABC is better, we'll go there!" And that's that. I'm too depressed, exhausted and upset to argue.

Whenever my husband or I tried to discuss anything else, she would interrupt and steer the conversation back to herself or her friends. When I mentioned the difficulty of losing my job, she responded with, “Well, my friend Morgan lost her job AND she’s getting divorced!” and then went on for 25 minutes about Morgan’s troubles.

I mentioned in conversation that my niece was an ICU nurse, (we were talking about hospitals) and she chimed in "Well my friend is a doctor! Then 20 minutes about how important that friend is, his awards and accolades.

When my husband mentioned wanting to watch the F1 race while we were there, she said, “My friend Todd is at the race this weekend! He's a VIP and has paddock passes! We should FaceTime him! He’s always doing stuff like that because he has so much money and connections.”

This led to an hour-long spiel about Bob and his wife, their travels, their uber successful rich kids and their own wealth. We don’t know any of these people, and while I can handle a conversation, her nonstop, one-sided monologues are exhausting.

Last night, my husband was discussing our plans for the next day, and she interrupted to talk about her job for two hours. I’m not exaggerating—she talked about her promotions, her salary, her projects, her bonuses, and her perks. By the time she was finished, it was too late to even do what we planned on.

Every time we tried to cut the conversation off and leave, she'd keep talking or say "Just let me finish telling you about this big project!" We're staying here for free, so I don't feel like it's my place to actually say "please stop talking, we have somewhere to go" lol. Last night I was tired and just wanted to go to bed, but we were once again treated to stories about her upcoming vacation plans.

Her lovely husband was there one day, which was wonderful. He's compassionate, fun, and knows the meaning of having a two sided conversation. And he talks with us about the news, books we're all reading , pop culture, politics, our animals, and asks how we're doing. But then he went out of town for a conference. He's out of town a lot.

Meanwhile, I’m having daily panic attacks, grieving my deceased brother, dealing with attorneys for his estate, managing anxiety about my alcoholic brother, a career that's the toilet, and facing financial worries. She knows I've been struggling with all of this. Her complete lack of self-awareness is staggering.

We thought we were coming here to relax, but instead, I’m constantly bombarded with stories of her and her friend's success, and wealth. I should have known better—when my husband lost his job due to the pandemic, she called us giggling about spending $4,000 on wine during a trip to Napa. This is at a time we were wiped out financially. And she knew it. Ugh.

I’ve tried to check myself to ensure I’m not just being petty and envious, but I’m genuinely at my breaking point because it feels like she’s rubbing our faces in her (and her friend's) success. My husband finds the whole situation annoying and ridiculous. He’s okay with us leaving if that’s what I want—he hates seeing me this upset.

AITA for wanting to end this vacation early due to my sister-in-law’s incessant bragging and one-upping or am I just too soft and easily hurt and upset? It’s just making me more anxious and even more depressed about my job and financial situation.

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

Caspian4136 said:

NTA. I feel this lol This is why we're not going to my mom's this summer. She's not rich, she just does Not. Stop. Talking. It's exhausting for me as the second I sit down to relax, she's calling my name, wants me to drop everything to go to her for whatever. By the time we leave I'm wiped out, hate the sound of my own name and am just so done.

Maybe you need an "emergency" back home that you guys need to deal with so you can get out early. Your SIL means well, but she is just not aware at all. She probably thinks she's distracting you with all of this.

Tannim44 said:

NTA, but pack your bags tonight. First thing tomorrow morning, apologize profusely on your way out the door as you have to hurry home to deal with an emergency. Don't stop to talk, walk and talk.

Septic tanks are a great excuse, "the septic, it's a mess", nobody wants to hear anything else. Even if you don't have a septic tank, go with it, she'll never know. Go home and rest. You've got enough on your plate without being around someone who makes your anxiety worse.

Ambroisie_Cy said:

The only reason she invited you was so you could witness her grandness. NTA.

braywarshawsky said:

NTA. You're dealing with an energy vampire. They constantly suck the energy out of their victims by "one-upmanship" and talking nonstop about "how important they are..." Honestly, I feel bad for her. She probably is miserable that nobody listens to her after a while. Do what you gotta do for your mental well-being.

Illustrious_Stay1618 said:

NTA. You are never the ahole for advocating for your own mental well being. What an insufferable self absorbed piece of work. Time to head home.

uiam_ said:

NTA! We've sent our inlaws money, paid for things, etc, etc. Only to find out the whole time they were letting us subsidize them they were saving away but pretending like they couldn't afford to survive. Now they've started a business and want to talk to us CONSTANTLY about how well they think it's going and it's just not something I want to listen to.

mare__bare said:

NTA. Your husband should be handling this. Personally, I'd just start asking her for money. Tacky yes, but she'll definitely stutter and search for words to say no. At that point you can remind her of all the absolute sh$tshow you're going through.

And keep talking. Just. Don't. Stop. Drag it all out. I bet she'll have no problem leaving you two alone then and you can take a breath. Or just change your flights and go home.

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