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In-Law Problems

KayKay23
Community Member

Hi,

This is a long story, so I’ll try and keep it short.

My fiancé’s sister absolutely hates me, for no reason at all. She told me that she didn’t want me at her wedding, even though I had been engaged for nearly a year by the time her wedding happened.

She constantly says horrible things behind my back and is extremely competitive. She is that competitive that she told me she got pregnant so she could have a child before me. She also can’t handle other people having attention on them. At my engagement party she announced her pregnancy- which then made the whole night about her instead of my fiancé and myself.

The part that makes it worse, she is having this baby at her parents house with her husband. She brags about the $90K she has in her bank account, she does not pay for anything at her parents house and expects them to pay for everything with this baby. The parents are that ‘blind’ in this situation that they kicked my fiancé and I out, even though we are both uni students with no income and no savings in our bank accounts. They also kicked out my fiancé’s other sibling who is in a very similar situation as us.

Im at the point where I avoid my future sister in law as I can’t stand her constantly talking about herself in a competitive way.

But sometimes I can’t avoid her, with Christmas coming up and the baby’s due date soon.

I want to cut her out of my life completely, but I am aware that at this stage it is impossible.

Ive tried everything to ignore her and not let it get to me. But it has, that’s way I’m writing here today. I don’t know what to do anymore. I feel like she tries to rule my life and currently makes me feel unhappy and gives me so much anxiety.

7 Replies 7

GoodWitch
Community Member

KayKay,

Hi, it sounds like you have quite the future sister in law! I'm sorry she is like this and its causing you stress. My questions are this:

How does your fiance feel about his sister? Does he see what she is like or can she 'do no wrong' in his eyes? These would be two very different situations in my view.

It seems to me, for whatever reason, she is very jealous of you or your fiance--more likely the problem stems from her relationship with him, not you. Has she always been competitive with him? It's possible you've walked into something that's been a long standing rivalry between the two of them and you are just the unfortunate bistander. It's hard to know without knowing more about the family dynamics, but it sounds like she's got her entire family running around after her. I wonder why. Is she a narcicist, or a bully or is there some history there that explains this?

however, you can handle anything if your fiance understands and supports you, not his sister when she's being unreasonable. Does he? I know I've had my share of difficulties with in-laws, and for a long time it was very stressful but once my husband understood his loyalty was to me, I felt supported at least. I hope this is the case for you.

If not, you have a more complex problem than just a nasty in-law, one you'll need to sort out with your fiance.

I hope this helps. Please let me know if I've misunderstood anything, am happy to chat further.

GW

Thank you for your reply!

My fiancé has the same views as me and supports me very much in this situation- which I am extremely lucky.

He tells me that she’s a narcissist and that the problem is either because she’s a middle child or because she hates him.

Sometimes I believe strongly that it is because she hates him, but she rarely takes it out on him, she’ll take it out on me instead which leaves me feeling hopeless.

I have no idea why the family run after her or why they think she is the golden child. Of course they have every right to love their child, but to go to this degree?

I’ve muted his whole family on social media so that none of them can send me messages that’ll cause anxiety etc. I wouldn’t block them only because that’ll start another fight.

I just still feel so helpless in this situation. It’s hard to ignore things when they are constantly in your face.

I'm relieved to hear your fiance sees his sister clearly and isn't blinded by her the way some of the rest of the family seem to be. That is the most important thing and I think it means you can get through this. Unfortunately, we can't choose family and there will be people you can't cut out of our life completely although you'll wish you could. If you and your fiance love each other though, and he supports you, it's worth the inconvenience.

It sounds like muting the family issues on SM is a great idea. the less you are drawn into it, the less stressful this will be. and perhaps you can take heart from the fact your to be S-I-L is simply not a happy or fulfilled person. If she was, she wouldn't feel the need to be the way she is. It's sad really. I've had issues with my M-I-L for years bc she is very self-involved and bitter, still not over her divorce 20yrs later, a racist and just a nasty person all round. It's hard. But mostly I just feel sorry for her. Imagine being that unhappy 24hrs a day? At least I only have to see her for a day every couple of weeks.

Imagine being so petty and needing attention that you want to get pregnant before someone else just to be 'first'? Honestly she must be miserable.

maybe one day you'll be able to laugh at her nonsense. In the meantime, live your own best life, that's all you can do.

Best of luck

GW

MummaPetal
Community Member

I am sorry for what you're going through. I have a sister in law exactly like yours. I've been married for 10 years and her behaviour hasn't changed. It never will.

All you can do is protect yourself. Avoid family situations if you have to. You need to keep happy and healthy for your family. There is nothing you can do to try and resolve it. It's really tough, I know. I've wanted to with mine and my mother in law can be difficult too. These are THEIR problems. It would be nice to sit down like adults to talk it out but with these type of personalities, they are always right no matter what.

I've had years of counselling to get to this point. I too have a supportive partner and you need to stand together as a unit. Actions are stronger than words. You can say you'll busy with your wedding and honeymoon preparations to have time for some family gatherings.

Try to find something that makes you feel happy and fulfilled. I know the hurt and anxiety you feel.

Ruby__2
Community Member

HiKayKay23.

Welcome to the forum. All are here to offer support.

I and my husband decided once we started to have children, that what mattered was the people who could have an impact on their lives or mental health.

My mother was the only grandparent who bothered. She has passed but our children (adults now) want nothing to do with the toxic side of our family. Your responsibility lies with what you want for your family.

We have been "estranged "for close to 20yrs.Honestley,I am at peace.

You are under no obligation to anyone .Life will go on.

I don't know if I have offered anything to you, but I have been in your situation.

Ruby2

PJ99
Community Member

Hi KayKay,

Your husband is right, she is a narcissist, you won't win with her, she has the parents fooled, you are lucky your partner can see it. Separate your self from her, and them if needed, and stop all contact, tell your husband he can still see them if he wants, but you don't want to be involved. The SIL will bad mouth you, but is probably doing this already, it's nothing personal towards you, it's because she is so insecure, she needs to have any attention, good or bad, to justify her sham of an existence. Just love and treat your partner the way you have been, tell him about how it makes you feel, then move on and live a happy life ( it's the best defence)

It took me over a decade to realise this about my FIL

PJ

therising
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi KayKay23

Wondering what has led your SIL to behave in such an immature way in life. Also wondering whether she's always been a bit of a princess (constantly enabled, by her parents especially).

It can definitely be uncomfortable standing up to certain people but it can pay off in the way of establishing boundaries. When I married my husband almost 17 years ago, we invited his uncle to our wedding. Based on a variety of reasons, we stated 'no kids' at the wedding/reception. His uncle, who is a pretentious twat insisted his child was coming to the wedding. I felt super uncomfortable, seeing I'm a fairly shy person, but I told him 'Don't come'. It turned out that my husband's family congratulated me and agreed he's a fairly rude sort of guy. My MIL, who I get along with famously, said she had always wanted to put him in his place but never wanted to rock the boat. He's always had a habit of putting her down, which grinds my gears because she's an absolute angel.

KayKay23, I gotta ask 'What is wrong with all the people around your SIL?!' The reason I ask is because this is how I felt/feel about my husband's uncle. With that phone conversation about our wedding, I'd asked my husband to kindly speak to his uncle, which he refused so as not to upset anyone. Hmmm. I thought 'For goodness sake man, grow some!!!' Why does my MIL still visit this man, based on my FIL's insistence (which is rather selfish on his part)? Why doesn't anyone speak up?!

There are many forms of intelligence KayKay, including social intelligence. Your SIL, for whatever reason, sounds a little lacking in this area. She just doesn't seem to get it. I would suggest you see your self as having the right to insist on a greater social intelligence from her when you are in her presence. Consider developing some statements which are easily blurted out such as 'Not interested' (in what she has to say) or shift attention to someone else, saying ''_______(insert name here), what's going on in your life at the moment?' It will agitate your SIL greatly but that's something she'll need to learn to deal with/take responsibility for. At the moment, everyone else seems to be taking responsibility for her behaviour - catering to it in some way.

I know I sound a little harsh but I feel so agitated for you. You deserve much better than this. You know it too, which is why you're so frustrated.

Speaking up may initially cause anxiety but you go for it. You might just be surprised by the support you receive.