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Wife convinced 'toxic' MIL is sabotaging her marriage; 'she constantly mocks my job and weight.'

Wife convinced 'toxic' MIL is sabotaging her marriage; 'she constantly mocks my job and weight.'


'My MIL is a toxic ocean and I don’t know what to do'


I’m of Indian ethnicity (born in India, raised in Dubai, and moved to the UK last year because DH missed his home, got offered his dream job, and the UK has better long-term benefits than Dubai). My husband is Scottish-English.

His mother comes from a family that is landed gentry. His father from a line of potato pickers who diverged into the horse business about 30 years ago.

His parents are divorced, and his father maintains the lowest mode of a relationship with my MIL. She is one of the cruelest people I’ve met in a personal capacity.

She was a single mother during the entirety of their childhood, and even now there’s a weird sense of it just being her and her kids and her grandson (our son). And the rest of the world is something to be protected from because only she knows what’s best for her and her kids.

The only time she was nice to me was when I was pregnant, and since then she keeps insinuating that I’m not a good mother, that my son only gets nurtured when she’s around.

During the pregnancy (when I foolishly thought she may have turned a new leaf), I had told her that I was scared of my son having disabilities because we weren’t financially in a position to provide him with the best care, and I didn’t know if I was capable enough to raise him because of my depression and severe anxiety.

Since then, every time she’d be around him and me, she’d say stuff like ‘hmmm…he may be on the spectrum’ or ‘my kids were doing x, y and z by this age. It’s interesting that (my son) isn’t developing at the same rate’.

I was going through severe post-natal depression (which I didn’t realise at the time) and I was convinced that any delay was my fault. Since then, I’ve gotten help but I still struggle with guilt because I can’t get her words out of my head.

Lately, she’s been insinuating that I am creating issues because there’s no way that anyone would be offended by her calling my mother tongue ‘malalalala’ (malayalam) even after DH told her that it is offensive, or by imitating the Apu accent, or mock ‘singing’ along with Indian music.

She has suggested that without the colonials, India wouldn’t have the printing press or education. To me, that sounds horrible. But I’m not allowed to say that because she doesn’t think it is. Her adopted brother and sister are Korean so she says she will not allow anyone to call her out for her behavior.

She had come down to stay with us for a week, and after she messaged DH saying she’d like for him and our son to join her on a holiday. When DH asked what about me, she ignored him and changed the topic.

He asked her again and she kept refusing to answer. He finally called her and she flipped her nut! She said that she’s sorry that she asked him to join her on holiday because she wanted to spend time with her son.

When asked how having a boisterous 21 month old in tow would equate to quality time for them (even though they got plenty of that when she was with us). She said that she really only wanted DH but she didn’t think I would want to spend even 2 days with my son and that she doubted if DH would even want to leave him with me.

She then said: ‘What is so wrong with wanting to spend time with my son? I go on holidays with my daughter and her partner never says no, (assuming I said DH wasn’t allowed to go, which I didn’t, and no one said that they weren’t going), and that if I was aware that it’s okay for people of the opposite sex to go on holiday together.' (I’ll leave it to you to divine from that what you will).

She b*tches about me behind my back, called me fat (6 months after giving birth I was 60kgs and had a tough time losing the baby weight), incredibly insensitive comments, tells me that any digital art or design isn’t real art(I’m a graphic designer professionally), keeps asking my husband what his plans are for our son and himself if I die, keeps asking if our son will be like her like that’s a great thing.

And that’s nothing compared to how she responds to her own children if they’re upset with her. In fact, they’ve rarely brought stuff up because they were scared of how she’d react.

She mocks them, tells them they’re wrong about what they’re feeling, gaslights them, and then asks them if she’s truly the worst mother on the planet.

Her kids have a habit of apologising profusely even if they didn’t do anything wrong with everyone. They freeze and have no memory of difficult conversations, believe her reactions are their fault because they’re sure they approached her in a way that was wrong (her kids are incredibly polite and considerate with everyone).

I really do think she’s either a narcissist or she’s insane. She accused my husband yesterday of using her for her money (DH hates borrowing money from even banks).

These things are just the tip of the iceberg.

Oh and she is, according to her, one of the last true Christians in the UK because the churches here are too 'woke.' She wants to move to Florida for fellowship. That should give you a hint about her stance on a lot of things.

I don’t know what to do but I know I do not want her in mine or my son’s life. No one has come out better for knowing her.

Here were the top rated comments after reading the OP's post:


Your husband is the hugest a**hole. He is perfectly fine with his AWFUL mother around your son? Are you kidding? That woman should NEVER see him and definitely never unsupervised. She is going to f*ck with that kids head so bad by sh*t talking you and your culture.

She is truly vile and your husband is right behind her. He should have shut this crap down a ling time ago. I don’t like ultimatums but this situation screams for your husband to shut her up or go no contact to protect you and his son. If not, I’d leave asap.

The OP responded here:


He’s trying to undo years of brainwashing as quickly as he can. But there is a theory that DH and SIL are entertaining, which is that maybe she’s completely unaware of the weight of what she says (socially unaware). I don’t think it’s likely, but i suppose they need to hope?


Dh needs to tell her to stop the bs or she's not seeing him or the baby.

You have a way to control her, but your dh needs to grow a spine.


Let’s suspend reality that she, a woman from the UK, doesn’t understand the wildly intolerant things she says about her Indian DIL are hurtful. Why don’t they tell her? Especially your husband? Does he not realize your son is half of you and as a result, half of your heritage and that the offensive things she says apply to him to?

We only have an obligation to one category of people in our lives: those we create. He has zero obligation to make his mother comfortable at the expense of his child. And part of that is ensuring that your family (husband, you, and baby) remains happy, healthy, and in tact.

You’re not overreacting. The emotional abuse is not acceptable. The intolerance is a dealbreaker.


I'd say she can't move soon enough. Bye! Have fun in Florida!

Is there any way to calm this situation or is it a losing battle?

Sources: Reddit
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