Young Widow Forum

Time Frame => Beyond the First Year (1+ years) => Topic started by: SailorGirl on May 12, 2016, 06:29:16 PM

Title: In-Laws
Post by: SailorGirl on May 12, 2016, 06:29:16 PM
My in-laws really turned up the crazy yesterday.  We haven't had any sort of contact in over 6 months.  They called my mother on Monday and told her that they were coming by on Wednesday evening to pick up the two guitars that my husband had left at my parents' home.  I sent MIL a text yesterday saying that we would discuss it this weekend, as it was not a good day.  They disregarded my text, and MIL and SIL showed up anyway, demanding that my parents give them the guitars.  My parents refused, they got angry and cause a scene, and my parents asked them to leave.  They refused to leave until my parents gave them the guitars.  I was at work, it seems they timed this so, so I was not able to be of much assistance.  My mother was crying in the floor, and my dad was fearing that she may have a heart attack; all the while, these heartless people were demanding $200 worth of property that wasn't even theirs.  I finally told my parents to give them the guitars, as my mother's health was more important than property to me.  I really can't believe the audacity of these people.
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Mrskro on May 13, 2016, 06:13:14 AM
I have no real words except what the hell is the matter with people?

"my mother's health was more important than property to me"

And this is what it comes down to for me health is more important than property. 

Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Trying on May 13, 2016, 06:38:09 AM
Wow, just wow.  Grief is no excuse for people to act like insensitive a**holes.  I'm sorry you and your parents had to go through that. 
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Captains wife on May 13, 2016, 08:04:23 AM
Wow. What is wrong with some people! Sorry : ( You and your family have been through quite enough.
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: April on May 13, 2016, 08:26:19 AM
Death makes people act so strange.. After my husband passed I had a few weird inquiries.. someone asked if I was going to keep my dog!  I got letters in the mail about selling my house.. "sorry for your loss.. can we buy your house".. I don't know what goes through peoples minds!!

 I never got the obsession with possessions.. Families torn apart because they think they were entitled to a loved ones things.. I get you want something special that belonged to them.. But they in no way had the right to his possessions.. I really hate how people act when there is a death.. pure greed. After my father passed away.. my brother just assumed everything although I was the oldest.. He was the closest to my Dad.. lived with him.. worked with him.. took care of him when he was really sick.. I didn't dare fight him on it.. he is my brother and I love him way more than things.

On another note.. you'd be surprised at what you are not entitled to if your husband passes.. if there is not a will.. Everything doesn't automatically get passed down to you.. for instance.. I went to change my husbands car over to my name so I could insure it.. I had to go to surrogates court.. I think the limit is 15 thousand dollars.. if his possessions amounted to over 15 thousand dollars it would have to go in front of a judge who would decide and divide his assets among his dependents.. which wouldn't be HIS PARENTS!!  His wife and his children!!  The legal ramification of death is overwhelming.

Good luck and I am so sorry that you have to go through this on top of loosing your husband.

Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Mizpah on May 13, 2016, 11:06:35 AM
Yuck.  That's awful.  A week after DH died, his mother and sister came over and ransacked our apartment.  I was in a weakened state of course from grief and wasn't thinking straight and wasn't up to being assertive, so just let it happen.  I sat on a couch sobbing while they searched through drawers (even MY underwear drawer), looked under our mattress, in our oven, everywhere.  It was so insane.  It was so traumatizing.  They thought he had large amounts of cash in our apartment.  They slashed up his shoes using our scissors and knives, because rabbis told them to.  It seemed so violent and thieving.  I don't regret doing nothing - they were clearly out of their minds themselves - and I was absolutely incapable of standing up to anyone at that point, I was just destroyed inside.  But I wish so much it hadn't happened (of course!!!).  Your in-laws don't have the excuse of being mad with grief, as it's been months rather than days.  This was clearly orchestrated.  I feel bad for them, and feel bad for my in-laws: how horrible do you have to feel in order to treat people this way????!  It's sick.  It sucks having to be the bigger person, but hey, you're a better person, and that's a good thing.  I'm so sorry, for your mom too.  Such ugly behavior.  Making something already unthinkably terrible even worse somehow. 
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: KrypticKat on January 24, 2017, 04:27:30 PM
I can relate to crazy demanding MIL. She made me cut a lock of his hair while he was on life support after the accident. I wish she'd just taken it while I was out of the room. She tried to change our shared netflix password between the time of the death and visitation (which we paid for). Then she stole his memorabilia I brought to the visitation to set out (we all brought stuff) while I was crying in the corner. She scooped up all the flowers she felt were hers after the funeral without asking and finally tried to go behind my back to take his ashes from the funeral home two days after the funeral before I was prepared to deal with them. She told the funeral home director she knew him longer so she should get them. She only calls and fakes concern before providing me a list of what else she wants now. Most of its just things and in the end don't matter but it hurts so much when someone picks away at your life like a buzzard.
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Wheelerswife on January 24, 2017, 05:17:40 PM
Hugs to you, KrypticKat.

I'm sorry you have been through so much with losing your husband.  It is hard to understand that other people grieve as we do, but you were the person your husband chose to devote his life to...and you him.  Your MIL doesn't understand this, and her actions, while rooted in her own grief, are hurtful.

I have 2 hurting MIL's myself.  I have very limited contact with my second husband's family anymore.  It took me 2 1/2 years, but I finally came to the place where I was able to release many of his belongings to his brother.  Right after my husband died, his brother came from Alaska, planning to take over all of the preparations for a memorial service and I believe, take possession of his brother's property (which was now MY property!)  I had been down this road once before, so I knew I was going to have to set boundaries - quickly.  I shut his brother down pretty quickly, while trying to respect his loss, too.  He was bold enough to bring up taking care of his brother's will, thinking he was getting something out of it.  I only had to say one sentence:  "There is a will; everything goes to me, and I am the executor."  He was shocked, I think.  He did manage to sneak some bookmarks, of all things, belonging to his brother.  If he had had the courtesy to ask, I probably would have given them to him, as they were both used bookstore enthusiasts. 

I don't know if this can work for you, but perhaps you can try to have a conversation with his mother.  Tell her you have connected with some other people who were widowed young and talked to them about their experiences.  Many of us find solace in having their belongings with us and can't bear to part with them for quite some time, but eventually, most of us can let go of a lot of things.  Ask his mother to make a list of what is important to her, so that when the time comes when you can consider letting go, you can consult her list and give her first dibs on what she would like.  My BIL accepted this response, and this past summer, he took possession of a heap of things I would have truly thrown away.  He told me it was important for him to have everything he could get and he was grateful.  He doesn't know what he didn't get - there are just some things that should remain private for someone (like old financial records and love notes from old girlfriends!) but his brother took possession of childhood toys, hundreds of books, notes from college classes (why?) and a host of other things that I didn't have to dispose of.

I wish you well.  You really don't have to be best friends with his family.  I imagine over time, the connection to them will become more distant, but remember that they will grieve him, too, in a different way than you, but you were his chosen love.



Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: KrypticKat on January 24, 2017, 08:01:54 PM
Thank Maureen,

It's what makes it all so frustrating. She'll ask for things in one breath then when I say I'm not ready she replies I know, I couldn't touch my own husband's things for a year after he passed away. She's experienced this kind of loss herself but seems to lack empathy. It confuses me, makes me angry and worse I feel super guilty that I might be hurting her during her own grieving because I'm not prepared to handle it yet. But I can't just let her push me around. She really doesn't seem to care how I feel deep down.  :(
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: KrypticKat on March 24, 2017, 07:39:58 AM
Let me ask everyone a question. How reponsible do you feel for maintaining the relationships with your in-laws? At first I did make a concerted effort to stay in touch. I would call and text and even send birthday cards. Yet nobody ever really reached out to me unless they wanted something. I couldn't take it anymore being neglected and the fact that I was only being contacted when they wanted something so I stopped. Then I got a phone call four months later and I get chastised for not speaking to them for 4 months. It hardly seems fair. How much effort should you really have to put into relationship that wasn't strong to begin with and clearly there isn't any real concern for your well-being. At times I want to keep at least a certain connection out of love for my husband but there seems to be no good in doing this.
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: MR on March 24, 2017, 09:21:51 AM
I am in continuous touch with my MIL as she is only person other than me and kids who is in pain even after more than 6 months. Rest is if they call I call.
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Wheelerswife on March 24, 2017, 09:54:28 AM
I am still in contact with MIL #1.  I don't really have contact with his brother and sister, my nieces and nephews or their babies.  I watched my nieces and nephews grow up...watched them play sports, etc., but as the only non-Jewish person in that family, I was never truly as accepted as the other SIL and BIL.  It is what it is.  I cared for their disabled brother for 18 years...but I have my doubts that I will be remembered in the will - if you get my drift.  I accept that reality.  I also moved away a year after my husband died and I then remarried, so his family, save his mother, seem content to just let the connection drift apart.  My FIL died 2 years ago and nobody expected me to return to the area for the funeral, but I did.  I was not treated like a DIL...I sat behind the "family".  It hurt, but it is what it is.  It isn't worth any confrontation.  My husband has been gone for 7 1/2 years now.

My second husband has been gone for a little over 3 years.  My last contact with his mother was almost 2 years ago when I stopped to visit her on a cross-country trip.  She lives a 13 hour drive from me.  She was bitter and blamed me for my husband's death.  I didn't harp on him about his health and seeing therefore I am responsible...because I allowed him to be the adult that he was.  His mother was always a bitter person, but my husband and I were kind to her.  He hated her overbearing and intrusive behavior - and I wasn't about to be like her toward my husband.  I'm still distantly in touch with his surviving brother....but he lives in Alaska and we really don't need to have much contact.  As I continue to go through my husband's property, I send him things I know he would want and he writes long thank-you notes in response.  We have kept things cordial, even though we really don't necessarily like each other.

I think that in time, your contact with his family will diminish.  Don't fret over it.  If they ask you why you haven't been in touch, just tell them you are grieving in your own way and you don't mean any ill toward them.  If spending time with you brought them solace, they would be reaching out to you themselves.  Cordiality can go a long way.  I know they pressured you for some of his property.  I'm hoping that pressure has diminished over time as things have settled in for them.  Hold your ground, though, and only give things away when you are ready. 

Hang in there.  Hugs to you,

Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: Julester3 on March 24, 2017, 08:35:44 PM
I get along with my FIL and step-MIL very well. They have always been very flexible and honest. They give me space and we talk and text back and forth quite regularly. I would do anything for them.

My MIL on the other hand has been difficult. Very Jewish mother, narcissistic attitude where I am not good enough and I do not do enough. I started dating my husband while we were in college and she asked me to lunch so she could ask me to dump him and leave him alone so he can join a Jewish frat and meet a Jewish girl. Suffice to say he immediately derushed and wanted to be with me. She's been great with backhanded comments or lack of praise for me. When she sees us, it always starts with the intent to guilt me because she doesn't see the girls enough. They are teenagers and they are busy. I refuse to alter their schedules to pander to her and she pouts. I won't give in. My kids are the center of my universe not her. My husband was my buffer and now he's gone. I set boundaries and she needs to meet them. Sounds harsh but we don't have a great relationship. She assures everyone we are like mother and daughter but she is nothing like my mother was. I don't like her games so I don't subscribe. She sends relatives to me to try to sway me to her cause. She stole my Facebook pictures and gave me no credit for the pictures. This from a retired lady and her son was her only child. I de-friended her and her entire side of the family on FB. I don't want to be a pawn and I don't want her spying on me through FB. I would be very reluctant to do stuff for them. I've done things in the past for them because Josh asked me too and it never felt as though they appreciated or even really liked me much. The cousins don't even refer to me as family. I am friend to the family.

So depending on your relationship, that would be your guide on what kind of relationship to set with your inlaws. I have kids so I do try and be fair but if MIL is trying to manipulate me, I don't play. The boundaries are set and I stay consistent.
Title: Re: In-Laws
Post by: KrypticKat on August 01, 2017, 10:47:07 AM
Just found out from my husband's aunt that in order to avoid my mother-in-law causing another scene at a family event they won't invite me unless she's not going to be there. I guess crazy blood runs thicker than water. It's kind of annoying that they're feeding into her childish behavior as I've tried to be neutral an adult about all of this. I suppose the sort of an inevitability since she has way more years with them and she did actually get a chance to have children and has that biological link. I suppose things would have drifted eventually but it's still kind of annoying. Found this all out on the anniversary of my husband's death. When life gets you down I guess it kicks you in the teeth too. Feeling a bit like chopped liver.