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Dealing with mother-in-law betrayal

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LadyLove posted 9/13/2013 15:38 PM

I want to start by saying it's been almost a year since DD, we are in R, my WS is doing and saying all the right things, he's incredibly remorseful and working hard to repair the damage he's wreaked on our marriage. We were having problems in our marriage at the time of the A, but our problems were just an excuse to have the A. There's been NC for almost a year. Although the MOW has sent me several facebook messages as to which she got nothing from me but crickets in return (including one where she wanted me to give my WS a message (oh, the balls!)).

My WS had his mothers full support during his 4 month A. The MOW was his former high school GF. What I thought was just some cooling off time spent sporadically over-night (several days in a row at one point) at his mom's house while we were having problems was actually his mom enabling the affair to be carried on at her home. She stroked his ego by saying things like 'You deserve to be happy, not miserable', 'You worry about you, that's all that matters', 'Stay as long as you want'.. etc. She lives an hour away, so she would even go out and buy him clothes so he wouldn't have to drive home and get clean ones. There would be family gatherings, a graduation party, a birthday party, a barbecue.. He was already at her house, so his mom encouraged him to bring the MOW along, which he said he was reluctant to do at first, but did anyway. We were never close to his other family members, so we didn't ever really have contact with them other than funerals etc.. so it was not unusual for me to be unaware of these functions. I was never aware through our 16 year marriage of his mother's obvious dislike for me, so it hit me hard.

It sometimes still amazes me that he's here with me. Afterall, he had 2 women stroking his ego and telling him everything he wanted to hear.. I was fighting 2 women for my husband and I didn't even know it. He says 'I woke up and said wtf am I doing?'

I told him to choose, either me or his mom. He chose me, which means never going to her house again, ever. This is the house he grew up in. It means no more private phone conversations with her, he speaks to her in front of me. He used to talk to her for an average of an hour and half once or twice a week, he'd go over there at least once or twice a month. He hasn't seen her in just over a year. We invited her over for christmas (I would've left the house so as not to beat the shit out of her), she declined the invite, citing other plans. I have not spoken to her in well over a year. I never confronted her once I found out, I just cut her out of my life.

My problem, is I'm morally torn. My WS seems to have had an epiphany about his mother. He's not blaming her for his affair (he owns it 100%), he's angry with her for encouraging it along, for giving him bad advice and for not using her lifelong considerable influence over him to make him question what he was doing. She endorsed it wholeheartedly and justified his feelings about everything.. she told him everything he wanted to hear to make it all okay.. Which he now sees was so terribly wrong. He hasn't returned her calls and has not spoken to her in about 5 months now. She's in her 70's and while she may not have morals or values, I do. Do I encourage my WS to call her or do I let her suffer? I can't imagine not speaking to my mom for 5 months.. or not seeing her for over a year. It just feels wrong to me.

I get that you need to remove people from your lives if they are not friends of the marriage, which she is definitely not, but she's his mother.. how the hell do I deal with her and what she's done? I will never forgive her nor do I want to. Any suggestions?

Skan posted 9/13/2013 17:55 PM

Toxic people are toxic people. There is no reason to have them in your life, no matter if they are parents, siblings, church members, bums, co-workers, etc. YOU have not cut her out of his life. A healthy decision was made that he would only talk to her with you being present. She has been invited to your house and declined. Your WH made the decision to completely cut her out of your lives and frankly, I think that that is a healthy one.

If she had shot you, you would feel no remorse for never seeing her again. If she had stuck a knife in you, you would feel no remorse for having cut her out of your life. She tried to murder your marriage. She actively assisted in your marriage's attempted murder. IMO, the bare, absolutely bare minimum for the two of you to allow her limited access to you would be a heartfelt apology to you.

summerain posted 9/13/2013 18:15 PM

Your conscience should be clean. Blood really does not mean anything, especially if they are toxic

Simple posted 9/13/2013 19:02 PM

I cannot emphasize enough how right Skan is.

It's his family. He's dealing with his family his way. Your focus should be on R. Your MIL is not part of that marriage. Only you and H.

Hugs your way.

Hearthache again posted 9/13/2013 22:04 PM

I know how you feel. My MIL was not that active in the A, but she allowed OW in her house even while I was there. She would ask my H to have contact with her. MIL and SIL were a go between when H wanted nothing to do with OW. He just was unable to tell MIL because of FOO issues.

She never apologized, never will. We started with very strict boundaries and have relaxed them after a while of her following them and seeing that she will no longer be allowed to become a wedge in our M. I think she has changed. Her actions say that.

You learn over time that she is not worth the energy it takes to be mad at her. I hope you figure out what is best for you and your marriage.

LadyLove posted 9/13/2013 22:46 PM

Thanks so much! My conscience is clear! My WH is dealing with it his way, and if that means cutting her out of his life, then so be it. I will never speak to her again, and I know she would never apologize because she sees herself as a victim and doesn't believe she's done anything wrong. and Skan, you are so right! Heartache again, I know she isn't worth the energy to be mad at her, but I am just filled with rage towards her. I have never hated anyone as much as I hate her.. irrational, maybe.. I hope it fades with time

[This message edited by LadyLove at 10:49 PM, September 13th (Friday)]

mchercheur posted 9/13/2013 22:48 PM

Have not spoken to my MIL for the past 2 yrs. after she made the following comments to me:

1.” Honey, what do you expect him to do, grovel?”
2. “Honey, I blame you --you drove him to it”
3.” Honey, your children will never forgive you for betraying them if you don't take him back” (how have I betrayed them? I am not the one who was unfaithful---WH admits this one is wrong)
4.” Well honey, if you had kept the house cleaner & worn makeup more, this wouldn't have happened.” (I have 4 children & work outside of the home, & have no help from her, her son, or any family member, because my family lives far away----not that that matters, even if I were a lady of leisure without kids, how dare she try to blame me for the atrocious thing her son did!)
5. “Honey, if you don't take him back, there will be 20 women lined up at the door for him”
6. “Honey, it was just 1 little mistake.”
7. “Get over it honey”
8. (During the first few months after D day, during which he would not stop contact with OW--- I would not take him back until he did.) “Honey, he HAS to go out for lunch with OW alone, they work together” (WH has never gone out for lunch alone with any other woman he has ever worked with)
BTW, WH's mother is an unremorseful OW & cheater herself, can you tell?

heartache101 posted 9/13/2013 22:55 PM

Well I am odd man out.
I think he should call mom and the both of you together need to speak to her.
She may be batshit crazy but she is his mom.
He doesnt need to be at mommys house alone. But maybe invite her out for dinner. To have a warm no serious talk get together. Not at her house but at a restaurant. You two together.
Yes I had a not so nice MIL.
To me she was cold and distant.
I never shut her out. I figured I would be the better person.
To others she was sweet and nicer. Oh well cant have everything in life.
She is dead now and I am thankful I was nice.

LadyLove posted 9/13/2013 22:58 PM

mchercheur.. oh my.. I've not spoken to my MIL since I found out, so she's been given no chance to say anything to me. I would have to be physically restrained from her if she said anything even remotely stupid to me. Being so toxic, does your husband still have regular contact with her? Are there boundaries?

[This message edited by LadyLove at 10:59 PM, September 13th (Friday)]

mchercheur posted 9/13/2013 23:06 PM

I have been working working working on this in IC, for quite some time, & trying to get WH to look at it in MC. He SAYS his primary loyalty is to me, but I don't feel that that is true. I think he is just going thru the motions---trying to be Switzerland. He is afraid to confront her because she was such a bully his whole life. She is very disrespectful to him too, but he just says "Well, that's Mom." I think she has caused irreparable damage to our marriage. She has never been a friend to our marriage.
WH has a lot of work to do , to separate from her & her control of him.

LadyLove posted 9/13/2013 23:07 PM

heartache101 - no way will I ever speak to her again. The last time I spoke to her I had called her house and asked to speak to my husband and she promptly hung up on me. She encouraged my WH to leave me for the OW. She has never made any attempt to apologize to me or contact me in any way. I refuse to reach out to her. She's already dead to me.

mchercheur posted 9/13/2013 23:08 PM

LadyLove, Don't let this toxic person into your marriage any more.

LadyLove posted 9/13/2013 23:13 PM

mchercheur - hugs to you and everyone else.. thanks for all the responses

Dare2Trust posted 9/13/2013 23:13 PM


Can I ask:

I will never forgive her nor do I want to. Any suggestions?

Has this MIL ever apologized to you - or asked for your forgiveness?
If not...I'd continue to ignore and avoid her!

LadyLove posted 9/13/2013 23:24 PM

No, never has she to attempted to apologize or contact me in anyway.

mchercheur posted 9/13/2013 23:26 PM

Even if my MIL did apologize, sincerely, I do not want to have a relationship with her anymore.

When God made the Garden of Eden, he did not put a man & his mother in it, he put a man & his wife. That says it all.

caring4me posted 9/14/2013 01:10 AM

Nowhere near what others have dealt with, but when WH's affair was brought up, his mother basically told me I couldn't be upset because I am not perfect, there are probably things I do he doesn't like. Really? And that equates to cheating being ok?

Gr8Lady posted 9/14/2013 09:30 AM

First, I am so sorry for your pain and betrayal by your MIL.
My understanding this is two fold, first as a BS that was betrayed horribly by MIL and as the mother of an adult son I "am" a MIL. My perspective is from 2 different positions.
Your husband, initiated a choice as directed by your ultimatum. I understand completely how you felt when you made this directive.
This is his mother, he should have the right to choose if he can speak to her or not. His choice. You can choose not to interact with her, that is her consequence for disrespecting you.
I spoke to my MIL weekly, until May 2013 when she did the same thing yours did. So I get it. 35 years of getting it actually.

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