Should I keep trying to have a relationship with my MIL?

A little background.. My husband and I have been married 6 years together for 9 and we have 2 children. My husband has always tried to push his mom out of our life and at first I was okay with it.. She didn’t really seem fond of me and always acted like everything between her and I was a competition for him. We both noticed and thought it was weird, not normal mother behavior. Flash forward him and I continue seeing each other, get married, have kids and I kind of stop him from pushing her out at this point. In my eyes she’s his mom and my children’s grandma so we need this to work and everyone to get along. Her and I have formed a relationship and we’re more like friends and have a good mother - daughter relationship now... my only problem is it’s so on and off.. some days she seems normal and we can really get along and I love her. Other days I feel like my head is going to explode on her. There will be times where she’ll change every single thing that’s brought up to something about her son and what he did when he was younger or how much he use to love her... she doesn’t understand how he could ever replace her etc... asks why he never seems happy and why I can’t make him happy? When he’s literally always happy - so I’m so taken off guard like who or what are you seeing? Other than that she’ll sit there some days and tell my toddlers to tell her she’s beautiful or ask if they love her hair and almost cry if they say no or ever disagree about her being “beautiful”.. she brags to me about other men who want her and need her in their life other than her boyfriend. Tonight she called and told me that she looks better than me, her son, her own daughters and my parents and she’s been through hell in her life so how does she look this good... lol I just didn’t even know what to say and I never do. She’s almost 50 and we’re in our late 20’s... It’s so weird to me, I’ve never been around anyone who talks like that! And I’m not saying she looks bad but it’s just a really far stretch to say what she’s saying. My husband barely talks to her unless it’s necessary almost or just a casual group conversation but never anything deeper. Her daughters don’t really give her the time of day either. She’ll talk down about me and then try to retract what she said and talk higher of me than anyone ever has like it’s way over the top and obvious. I just don’t understand what she’s doing. When my husband and his siblings were younger she would put her needs and feelings over theirs and act sad to get what she wanted from them. She still tries this but it doesn’t work anymore, then she’ll just get mad and storm off or go cry and blame them for whatever is going on in the situation. Like I said this isn’t every time I’m around her but randomly occurs usually once a week give or take.. Anyways, I’m just not sure how to handle this? Do I push forward and love the good days and except the bad ones? Is this narcissistic behavior? Insecurities? Do I try and cut ties? Try helping her somehow? It seems anytime I try to talk about something deeper or say anything back to kind of get into a conversation about why this is happening she either cries or completely disregards what I’m saying and talks about something else about her life like I didn’t even say anything

If her own kids don’t really talk to her then there’s most likely a reason. She sounds a little off, I’m not sure what kind of mom would talk more highly of herself while putting her children down. I know it’s your children’s grandma, but some people don’t need to be in your child’s life. If it were me, just personally, I would stop talking to her. It’s too much stress to worry about how she’ll be that day, I mean your own husband won’t even talk to her unless absolutely needed. It sounds like she’s a narcissist, has insecurities and maybe even bipolar.

As women we usually try to fix things, but you need to remind yourself that you have to trust your husband’s judgement when it comes to his family, stop pushing things and if you want to ger you MIL’s calls, then go ahead, but you already know there’s something off with her, it’s up to you to decide how much you’ll put up with her, she sounds like she’s got some mental issues, but only a professional will be able to determine that… I would limit the exposure to your kids to about once a week and that’s it…

Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. Should I keep trying to have a relationship with my MIL?

Sounds like she has some mental health issues.


Sounds like she has some emotional issues . Maybe your husband can help get her into counseling


It’s hard for some moms especially when they go from being number one to top 5. She feels like he isn’t going to love her and I see that. It doesn’t make it okay but she’s hurting

Sounds like Bipolar disorder


Presents as schizoaffective schizophrenia which is more treatable than bi-polar disorder but even if successfully medicated is a lifetime sentence, good luck

Menopause? Could be why she’s crazy…


Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. Should I keep trying to have a relationship with my MIL?

I can understand why you are doing what you are doing as I think we’d all like to have good relationships with relatives but unfortunately it sounds like the reasons why your husband didn’t talk to his mother are coming back two fold to you and your children… from someone who has cut off a narassisist parent, I would just let it fizzle out, after all it’s not your responsibility to keep it going and if your husband doesn’t want to be involved with his own mother, I’d say that was a big red flag and you’ve tried all you can to make it work to no avail. It’s very kind of you to want the relationship to keep going the sake of kids, feelings etc but it will consume you and cause problems (if not already) and it will be harder for you to say anything the longer is goes on it’s not your mum! Sounds like she is self absorbed which sometimes cannot be changed xx

While I’m not surprised people are leaning straight to narcissism, I’m wondering if there may be more going on for her given the sporadicness of what you’ve said. I wonder if you can bring it up with her on a more level day or is her bf someone you can enquire with perhaps

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Your first clue was when her own children didn’t want her involved. You got yourself a narcissist. It’s always going to be about her validation. It’s never going to be about her kids, about her grandkids, or even you. It will always be her. Sometimes it’s civil and even pleasant, other times it will be weird and uncomfortable, and others toxic. You just gotta figure out if you can keep her contribution to your family healthy or toxic

Absolutely sounds like narcissistic behaviour! No wonder all of her children don’t give her the time of day. You can never reason with a narcissist unfortunately as they think they are always in the right :pensive:

Respect your husband’s decision! Let her go and don’t bother with her at all!! Not something or someone you want in your life. Your kids do not need that crap either! My 2 year old acts better then this.

She doesn’t sound mentally well to me to be honest.


Perhaps she has some mental issues?

Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. Should I keep trying to have a relationship with my MIL?

Protect yourself and family. It’s nice that you care but do yourself a favour and run


Sounds like severe BPD to me. Research it, ask your husband to look into it. I know back in her day people didn’t do talk therapy or get medicated for anything unless they wanted to be locked up in a psych ward. She’s clearly codependent on your husband and has been for a long time. It’s not her fault. She needs help.


I think you take your cues from your husband. I also think once a year you could excuse that behavior… not once a week.


I was about to say narcissist as well! Same exact thing here. Hubs was no contact before me, we had kids and I stupidly pushed him to have a relationship with her and he went no contact again but I stayed in contact. Did everything we could to help her etc when I finally realized what a vile person she was and my husband was right about her. We cut our money train off and it got so ugly that we are both no contact and I feel bad for not listening to my hubs. I say trust your man he knows he’s best and if a grown adult doesn’t want anything to do with their own parent that says a lot and
Tells you right there she is no good. Be prepared if you go no contact to have her bash y’all to anyone that can as that’s totally how narcissistic people are. Good luck, ignore and stay strong. It sucks sometimes but life will be sooo much more peaceful!!


You’re a very strong and kind person for trying, but I think if your husband doesn’t really want her in your lives and you’re not enjoying it that much either you should back off the relationship with her. Plus it’s probably causing your husband some discomfort and I think in trying to be empathetic towards everyone else’s feelings, you’re not being empathetic towards his :heart:


Definitely sounds like she’s bipolar. Medication may help but from my experience, cutting the cord is best. You don’t need that level of toxicity in your lives and your kids definitely don’t need it either.


Cut ties and never look back. We dealt with a similar situation except it was both my MIL and SIL, they kept trying to get him back with his ex who had cheated on him and did a bunch of other messed up things. Not saying he was perfect in that situation either and I have nothing bad to say about her, they just were not good together. And his mother and sister could not understand that apparently so they put me down every chance they got, he finally had enough and cut ties on his own (I couldn’t tell him to do that and wouldn’t. In my eyes, even though they hurt me, that was still his family). But we never looked back and we are so much happier without the toxicity around us. People like this will never change, they will say they will and make tons of false promises, but at the end of the day, they are who they are and you will never be good enough in their eyes, so run and live happily ever after :heart:

I think she may need some professional help sounds like she may be suffering from some mental health problems. The hard part would be how to broach that conversation and try get her to seek help though. I mean if your feeling like you may need to cut her off anyway there’s no harm in trying to make her see what’s she’s doing and that perhaps she needs help if it blows up in your face and you lose the relationship after that atleast you can’t say you never tried. Does seem your husband may of had a good reason to cut her out and if she’s not willing to change you need to get that energy and behaviour away from your family asap

In a world where everyone screams to protect mental health but literally every comment is saying run from this woman…very sad.

Obviously, she has some form of mental health issue. She needs help, she does not need her family to desert her.

Depending on what is wrong with her, you should want to know. A tremendous amount of MH issues are hereditary, so you could be dealing with this later on.

In today’s world we should all try to give each other more grace and mercy.


If your husband doesn’t want contact with his own mother that speaks VOLUMES! Trust your man!


Personally to me it sounds like bipolar disorder. Or multiple personality disorder. It’s up to you on how you want to handle it. I would probably have very minimal contact. Or no contact at all. But that’s just me. I’ve dealt with this a lot in life. And growing up it’s caused a lot of hardships. I still don’t have the best relationship with either of my parents. And my kids don’t either. My husband sees how much it effects me and how lasting that effect is. It’s not something I want to put my kids through either. Good luck.


Huge well done for keep trying an still now wanting to help her but I think while ur children are still young you need to protect them from this situation as she’s not a positive roll model at all x

Should have listened to your husband, and allowed the distancing between y’all, and his mother.


From how you’ve described her, she sounds narcissistic. I’d take the cues from your husband and keep her at a distance. Seems like the relationship is taking a toll on your mental clarity so much that you felt the need to reach out , with that said, I feel like you already know what you need to do and now you just need to act on it. It’s hard to form a solid genuine relationship when someone acts like that. Hope things work out either way!


You can’t fix this. You can’t fix her. Keeping a toxic person in your children’s lives is not fair to them. They don’t get to choose. You have to do it for them. Boundaries don’t work for narcissistic people. Time to move on and focus on the happiness of your family and leave the drama behind.


Classic narcissistic and bipolar behavior. She needs counseling and medication to help her balance out.

My MIL was a paranoid schizophrenic and my husband was cared for intermittently by his grandparents as she was hospitalized and my FIL was an alcoholic. My husband blamed her for his Dad’s early death and my FIL had passed by the time we married. His Mom pulled her “stunts” but i was always kind to her. My husband was blatantly indifferent to her which broke her heart, but he was still a hurt little boy. He finally decided to move us across the country, which was good for him but not me, because i loved my family. I guess i’m asking you to do what you have to to save your own family from the emotional abuse. Best wishes to you in whatever choice you make. Get your husband on board with your choices, it won’t be easy. :smiling_face_with_three_hearts::grin::pray::pray::pray:

Sounds like narcissistic behavior mixed with bipolar disorder. She doesn’t sound stable, I’d definitely keep contact to a minimum. Try not to feed into it and look up tactics to deal with these types of people. It’s not easy and you may find it’s too much like your husband clearly has. It’s no one’s responsibility to “just deal” with a person because they’re family. She has to realize she’s the problem and seek help. But seeing as her whole family has alienated her, I highly doubt she’ll want to change or seek help.

Definitely narcissistic behavior. If your husband doesn’t want a relationship with her it’s probably for a good reason. I know it’s easier said than done but you may want to stop trying

I feel she is going through menopause and the change in a woman’s hormones can make some women exactly what your describing. Maybe you could gently bring it up to her and suggest that she goes and talks her doctor she may be unaware of what she is doing. Good luck

This sounds like my mom, it just gets worse. I’ve had to cut her off multiple times it’s to the point where non of her kids and family want to be around her bc it’s too toxic. I feel for you it’s a tough situation to be in.

Let her go.
It’s not healthy for your children to be around someone like that. Even if she only acts like it once a week. That is too much.

As you described her my mind screamed narcissist. You’re an awesome person too try make things work. But in all honesty. If she hasn’t changed 50years on she isn’t going too. My daughters father acts the exact same. It took me 11years too realise things will never change. It didn’t matter how love or help you give. His emotions are always up and down, nothing ever made sense, he always needed help but didn’t want it at the same time, and it’s always everyone else’s fault. The way her children are towards her speaks volumes. I wish you all the best as these situations are never easy x

Sounds like my mother in law. See except her son and I are divorced. We’ve had quite the rocky relationship. My best advice is stay away lol keep the kids away. She may be their gma but being a part of their lives is a privilege not a requirement. I only allow my MIL to have the girls over once a month due to her behavior. Long 9 years with that bunch. Dont waste your time hun. I still have her blocked on social media and the only way she can contact me is through her son or husband. Both of whom know I do not want her in my life. Ive actually had to call the cops on mine several times. Needless to say, it’s not worth your time or trouble


You can’t bargain with a narcissist and stop forcing a relationship between your husband and his mother. He knows why his distancing her. You’ve only known her a few years. This is not your fight.

While I was reading, I was thinking, it sounds like she has maybe mental issues. Then as I continued reading, I was thinking it was more like someone who is a narcissist. If it was mental issues, I would try to maybe seek needed help. But if she is aware of her behavior and it’s just narcissism, I’d just have to cut the relationship.


Narcissistic behavior. And as long as she’s in denial about it, you’re not gonna get thru to her and the behavior will continue.

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She may be lonely and looking for compensation. It’s not always a good way to do it.

Honestly if he was pushing her out of his life from the beginning there has got to be a reason and honestly I wouldn’t want to open that can of worms. I would also sit down with him and ask him specifically why he has not wanted to have a relationship with his mom. Get some context because there might be something going on you have no idea about then later on may regret ever letting her in.

Not worth it! It affects you now….your kids as they get older and understand more……poor babies

This woman sounds like my mother… fucking toxic as HELL. I had no choice to to stop talking to my mom. It was just too much stress.

Why would you want to be around a selfish woman

Kinda sounds 2 me like she might need 2 be put on some antidepressants might b bipolar or something the way you describe things! Just some food for thought!

I don’t mean this to be ugly but it sounds like she may have some mental issues going on…

Most definitely bipolar. Unless it’s something that will hurt your kids, always be 100 with your husband! I just realized this myself. My kids come first and then no matter what your spouse!

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Bipolar: my MIL was institutionalized several times for it and she acts just like that. I finally cussed her out husband and I changed our numbers and moved 800 miles away (after 10+ years of her insane actions)


It sounds like she needs psychiatric help.

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Sounds like my mom. I just finally cut ties a couple months ago. Just turned 39, wish I would have done it sooner. Tried but always felt bad, and Everytime was worse than the last. My daughter’s are getting older and started noticing so I had to end it. Toxic is toxic and it comes in many forms and is never easy to get rid of but it’s always necessary.


Yeah that’s so weird and definitely unhealthy!!
Emeshment 100%
I would draw back from her… that’s not good for anyone.

She’s complicated ! Lordy ! I’d stay away . Scary situation .

You have to protect you and your children…she’s mentally unstable
She’s trying to do what she did to her children to your children and that’s a mind game, that’s not fair at all for them to have to deal with her narcissistic behavior, even if it is every now and then…still not okay. I
I’d cut ties and stick to it

Borderline personality disorder, sounds just like my EX mil.

I don’t know where the line is between sticking up for yourself and trying to justify yourself to someone who has judged you negatively and falsely and probably won’t change their mind no matter what you say or who you really are.
But I also don’t think it’s a clear cut thing. If you feel like you will be standing up for yourself, I say do it, but also detach from the outcome.
If the person still stays committed to their judgment, then let them think what they want to think.
No reply at all can sometimes be perceived as an admission of guilt, but who cares anyways-over explaining will only leave you frustrated and exhausted.
I learned at a young age to just walk away from those people.
Because the reality is that those people WANT TO believe it!
That is why it does no good to argue with them about it. If you had photos & concrete evidence they were incorrect in their judgement or against what was told about ya to them - it really would change absolutely nothing because it’s not even about you really - just another method to get you out of their environment.
You may pose a problem to them if you are around because they have told you one thing & others something different. Or they could be using you as an excuse/escape goat to others so they would get sympathy/empathy or leniency- who knows.
The only thing for sure is they have already made up their minds about you & nothing you could say or do will change that!
Do what you feel is right for you in any given circumstance. :100::sunglasses::kissing_heart:

Narcissistic, bipolar, and I’d bet a touch of munchausen syndrome from when your husband was young. I know this personality well, I have someone in my family like this. There is no fixing her. I wouldn’t maybe cut all ties, but just distance yourself and family from her a bit.

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The woman sounds like a Narcissist and they have their good days but the underlying issues will always be there. I suggest just humour her on the odd occasion and slowly retreat from the relationship. She will be negative and want attention and you have the right mind frame to want to be civil with her so just do the “good mum” job and let her be a grandmother but minimise it. And knowing your husband and his family back you up is all the peace of mind you need. They obviously know what she’s like abd have backed away too. Thats her problem not yours

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Sounds like she has some very serious untreated mental illness. I would push for her to get therapy and the help she needs. If she is unwilling, I would pull away like your husband has. Respect his wishes because his mother are already treating your children in bad ways and manipulating them like she did her own children and it WILL get worse if you don’t put a stop to it. Protect your children above all else, but do try to get her help. She’s damaged her children to the point where they have washed their hands of her, clearly.

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She’s a manipulative narcissist and even if he didn’t call it by term your husband knows she’s toxic and has tried to distance. You keeping her around because of her position/ role is only hurting your family. Minimize time with and around all people like that. It will NEVER change. Also look up love bombing. Anyone’s capable not just a significant other.

I feel like she is guilty for how she raised her kids up. She knows she should’ve done ABC chose to be selfish and did otherwise because they are her kids and they love her. Kind of taking advantage. But as child you grow and end up seeing things for what they really are. Sounds like the children are just putting up with her because she is a mom. Sounds like she has been making bad choice that affected her kids but has never owned up to it nor showed remorse. Boys are close to their mothers so she must’ve been a horrible parent then. And now that she’s older with nobody but the kids she failed to fully care for right she is bitter and fails to accept the consequence of her actions. If it were up to me I wouldn’t try so hard with having a good relationship with her. Have boundaries.

So you’ve heard it all…not wrong either. She’s Bipolar and a narcissist. That’s some toxic crap. She needs help. You can either sit her down and let her know she needs help, which she may lose her crap about this. Or get the family together for an intervention ( I doubt anyone will want to participate). But ultimately you need to set boundaries because she’s toxic, and you know it! Your kids deserve a better grandma. Your husband deserves a better mother, ultimately it’s her choice to change.

She’s a narcissist. Honestly I get your thought process of trying to mend husbands and hers relationship for your family but he’s been dealing w her his whole life. Ppl that don’t grow up w toxic household parents don’t really understand why a child doesn’t want their parent. My step mil is a narcissist abuser and none of her own daughters have relationship w her nor do we. I respect my husband for not wanting to deal w her and don’t want our children to be exposed to her either. My advice don’t push this if your husband doesn’t want it. Don’t let your children be exposed to this toxic environment. Narcissist never change

So many people who know narcissist will say narcissistic. But you can’t always slap the label on everything that may be a trait. It also sounds like many other things. Manic episodes, bi polar… anything. Low self esteem than bpd lows of hurting those around you and pushing them away. If you did something harmless that she perceived as hurtful then it’s now im better than you and I’m going to demean you for what pain you caused that you didn’t mean to but you did it. You either except that she is not well and have to tell yourself she is having episodes basically when she does this. Telling people he is not happy is her possibly trying to convince herself you don’t make him happy because she is jealous and wants her son all to herself or she knows she wasn’t a great mother so she has to feel like your not a great wife. So you need to figure out if you can deal w it and understand she’s not ok. If it really causes you to ever question yourself and your relationship than she probably needs to go and just agree to say hi around the holidays at least. Something because once she is gone no matter how toxic will you wish you hadn’t pushed her all the way away?

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She sounds like my husband’s mom whom we have NOTHING to do with. She’s a narcissist and bipolar. When my husband and his brother were little she would say to them…" tell me I’m a great mommy" yet was a horrible mom. Reading this made me cringe cuz they sound so much alike. She wanted all his attention too and has NEVER liked anyone he’s dated cuz she didn’t like sharing him. Weirdest thing ever.

It’s NPD, narcisstic personality disorder. SHE WILL NEVER CHANGE

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Karlie Mason Williams :heart:

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Narcissistic mil. Cut off contact

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She appears to have an unthreatened mental illness.

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She’s got daddy issues

Narcissist FOR SURE!!! Only keep her in your life if she gets counseling

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No. Research narcissists and stay away.


Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. Should I keep trying to have a relationship with my MIL?

This is narcissistic behaviour - self promotion, need for constant validation and approval, criticising of others but then when they think they’ve gone too far and pushed you away too much they love bomb you to suck you back in.


Sounds like your husband knew about all this behavior and made a choice as any adult has the right to do with toxic behavior, and you forced him to allow her back around, you can’t change people if that’s how she is that’s how she will continue to be, especially if she chooses not to get help… seems like you should have respected his wishes on this issue as there’s obviously a reason he made that choice to begin with.


Is she bipolar? She needs an evaluation. I would also trust your husband’s judgment. What she did to her kids she will try to do to your kids. I have a sister just like her. Please don’t let her be mentally abusive or manipulate your children.


This dynamic is called a narcissistic mother with a victim complex


Look into BPD sounds like she might have this. It’s a mental health disorder, obviously don’t go telling her she has it because she may very well not and it can be damaging to just self diagnose however I do come from a family that struggle with mental health disorders so she sounds similar to some of my relatives.


Maybe your husband is trying to protect you , kids and himself from the inconsistency and selfishness it’s not a good cycle the hot and cold


She sounds like a narassist to me


she could use a neurological and mental health evaluation to determine what is happening.

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You let him make his own decision about his mother. He knows her way better than you and if he doesn’t want her around, there are lots of reasons for it. It takes a LOT for a person to be like “I’m done with my MOM” so if they are, respect that and support them.


This is definitely narcissistic behavior - I am happy that her children were able to see that she’s not healthy, and do what it takes to remove themselves from that toxic relationship. I am concerned about the relationship that she has with your kids - they might start to just agree with her in order to appease her, and I think that could potentially impact how they interact with others. They might not be as open to sharing their true thoughts and ideas with people. Anyways… she sounds very manipulative, so I would slowly pull away or become completely “uninteresting” & she’ll eventually get tired of interacting with you. Don’t share any of your personal information, and basically just acknowledge what she’s saying to you. Essentially, if you’re like a “boring little rock”, she’ll move onto the next person who will be her supply.


This is a mental health issue. She needs to see a doctor more than anything


Aaaaaaaand now you know why they don’t want a relationship with her …


Sounds like she just wants attention and is jealous of you.

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POINT SIMPLE… If you love him. You should love the women who made him… I’m sure he talks to his mom when you are not around they all do. She may know more then what you think she knows… but yeah… you have to love the person that made him… love is positive energy, you don’t want know negative energy…

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Protect your peace Sis.

I got a few wacky sisters that act just like that! Get away from your mother in law! She’s toxic and enjoys the mind games. Your husband must know what she’s about if he doesn’t even want bothered with her. I wouldn’t be rude or ignorant but I would just cut the bonding and not have her around as much! Nobody got time to deal with that regardless of who they are! Some people just simply suck!


I feel like you should trust your husband’s judgement on his own mother. If he doesn’t want her in his families life that should be good enough for you. And you’re already seeing why he feels that way.


Yeah she’s for sure got mental health issues and nobody can help that but her. You can be kind but still stay distant. Keep STRONG boundaries…don’t try to get deep because she likely doesn’t wanna face all that.


Well shes a narcissist.

Cut her off again. This is personality disordered behavior. Can’t be fixed, never gets better, only worse.

Just bc someone is related to your kids doesn’t mean they should automatically be involved in your kid’s lives. Sometimes it’s best to shield them from the toxic and inappropriate behavior. Also you do not have to put up being disrespected, manipulated, gaslighted, insulted etc just bc she’s your MIL. I’d shut that down real quick. Especially think about what kind of message that sends to your kids… it’s possible they can see these interactions and think it’s ok for someone to treat them like grandma treats mom. Or worse, that they’ll think it’s ok to behave like grandma. Also as your kids get older grandma will begin to gaslight, manipulate, and abuse them just the way she does you and her own children. I’d go no contact or very low contact- only at every other holiday every other year if it were me! :smile: But regardless, whatever you decide to do you are not a bad person, bad mom, bad dil if you keep her at arms length.