Mothers-In-Law From Hell Are Stressing Us Out!

Remember that nasty email that recently went viral this summer from a British mother to her future daughter-in-law? The subject line read “Your lack of manners” and the email itself went on to attack this young woman for being a picky eater, lacking humor and having “cheap”parents (never mind that they were unemployed). Oh, mothers-in-law. They can really destroy a person, you know?

I just happen to love mine, but not everyone’s so lucky. In fact, one in four women think their relationship with their mother-in-law is the most stressful part of being a parent. Yikes! A survey of 2,000 mothers by Netmums, an online support group, suggests that a third of them regularly argue with their partners as a result of MIL meddling.

When asked to describe their mother-in-law, a quarter of women polled said, “controlling, interfering and bitchy.” And one third say they’re made to feel like they’re not good enough for their partner, no matter how hard they try. Some went so far as to pick up and move into a new home in order to distance themselves from their in-laws (could you imagine?).

We all know that mother-daughter relationships are complex, but few people speak openly about the MIL-daughter relationship that often involves a whole other layer of complexity and stress. For example, you can tell your own mom to mind her own business (in whatever terms you deem inappropriate), but I have yet to find a woman who’d feel comfortable doing so with her mother-in-law. It’s just an unwritten rule that you grit your teeth and remain sweet and calm when she makes back-handed comments and offers unsolicited parenting advice.

How about you? Do you have a mother-in-law from hell? Or are you one of the lucky ones?


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