I get to see my inlaws tomorrow....yay!!!

<p>That was sarcastic by the way.</p>

<p>My MIL (mother-in-law) for some reason likes to brag on and on about niece. She won't stop going on and on and on about how wonderful, and perfect, and above all my niece supposedly is. In reality, my niece is a nasty trashy cruel disgusting mean girl who will probably end up on drugs and is incredibly over the top spoiled. She does things like sits next to my daughter at dinner and then proceeds to tell my daughter that she can see magots in her food. Then she will start sticking her fingers in my daughter's food saying there is one, there is another. Another thing she does is spends a large portion of her time chatting online on her Alienware computer. She brags about how her best of friends on there do drugs while they chat and she thinks it is funny. Oh, and apparently, several of them are in their 20's or older. Niece is 15 yrs old. Niece also goes to an expensive private school, but it is not a very good one. She has a rotten attendance record. My MIL donates a lot of money to help maintain her grades. (I don't know if it works, but they claim she gets straight A's). My MIL talks like this private school is MIT. Reality is, my children actually could not attend that school because they were too advanced. My children were on the accelerated track. All 9th graders take the same classes at that school as well as the 10th graders. Therefore, since my children were already ahead of grade level in math and science, they could not attend the school. (however, it is a Catholic school which is run by the diocese so they did refer our children over to different schools that were known to be better schools, and also offered the more advanced courses). Our local public schools actually have higher SAT scores and higher AP passing rates. But regardless....even if she did attend MIT, it is wrong and horrible to treat anyone the way my children have been treated by this girl and my MIL. </p>

<p>So I heard from MIL the other day. She informs me again that niece is going to go to Texas A&M. (niece is only in 10th grade, she has not applied or been accepted, it is a couple years away). Then she asks where my children are going to go. Texas A&M is not on their lists. Unlike my niece, who has unlimited funds, we are limiting our school prospects to places where my children can get scholarships or other aid so we can afford it. Also, A&M would not have my daughter's major. And my son could not do what he wants to do there either. </p>

<p>So..when I say no, my children are not planning to go there, my MIL then tells me they must not be able to get in because it is the best school and they would obviously go there if they could. </p>


<p>My children are harder working, kinder, better people. They COULD get in to A&M. OK, so my daughter would be an automatic admit to both A&M and UT Austin. My son would not be an automatic admit. But I am sooooo tired of her!!!</p>

<p>I know I need to focus on being a good person. I need to work on not seeing red when I deal with her. She is not a good person, but letting her get to me only hurts me. Maybe I need to write down all the wise wisdom statements I have heard through the years and stick them in my pocket and pull them out repeatedly to read when dealing with her.</p>

<p>I just hope my niece is not there. uggghhh!!!</p>

<p>Download a few pages from the brochures and viewbooks of Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, etc, and accidentally remove them from your purse while looking for keys or phone. Then comment how annoying the schools have been in relentlessly pursuing your kids and sending all those emails about applying. Then add something about how the schools are experts are tracking high scorers. </p>

<p>And let the MIL wonder about what happened.</p>


As a mom, I would call your niece out on it. I would also ask your kid to throw the food out and make herself another plate. </p>

<p>You MIL seem to have a soft spot for your niece and it bothers you. Is your niece really that horrible?<br>

I can’t imagine thinking any of my niece/nephew (my siblings children) that way.</p>

<p>I can. There is a young woman in my family who killed a young man in a car accident while under the influence of drugs. After her family spent a fortune keeping her out of jail, she was angry that her grandmother wouldn’t buy her another car. And she exhibited these charming traits when she was younger than 15.</p>

<p>Does your niece have parents? I would talk with them, or the girl directly, about the rude behavior. Preferably in private, but if you have to, do it at the dinner table in front of everyone. Even if you have to just say, “Gosh, Susie, aren’t we a little old for ‘gross-out’ conversations about bugs in food?” or something like that. Right now everyone seems to be allowing the bad behavior–it is as though the niece holds some kind of power over everyone in the family. </p>

<p>As for your mother in law, I think another private conversation is in order. Tell her how you feel when she praises the niece (while presumably ignoring the many accomplishments of your own nice, normal kids–her grandchildren, right?). OR, let your husband do it. In my experience few men will stand up to their mothers but maybe he will. </p>

<p>The last option is just to minimize contact with the MIL and niece, or declare that conversations about college are off-limits. I have heard of other families doing that successfully. I don’t know if it will work in your case, though. It seems as though a few of the family members lack restraint.</p>

<p>lmkh70, you have given your MIL much too much power over how you feel. Your niece, her successes or failures, the schools she goes to, what she does on-line – none of this has anything to do with your or your daughter. You need to see them from time to time, but try to pretend they’re people you’re sitting next to on an airplane and that you’ll never see them again.</p>

<p>It wouldn’t hurt to teach your kids to stand up to their cousin either. Would they allow another kid to stick finger in their food at school?</p>


This. It sucks to deal with someone like your MIL. But as you know, you can only control your own behavior. You can’t keep your MIL from preferring your niece or talking about her as if she’s far more accomplished than your own kids. You can refuse to take the bait. You can even avoid your MIL unless you absolutely must see her at an important family event. You can choose not to call her, and to give her only 5 minutes when she calls you before you have to answer the door or take something out of the oven or leave for an appointment. You really can! </p>

<p>Or you could vent IRL as you have here, but that’s unlikely to change either the niece or the MIL. You can’t fix mean or stupid. Think about it. Your kids will have terrific choices when they’re choosing colleges. What difference will your niece’s situation, or what your MIL thinks, make in the greater scheme of things?</p>

<p>I agree with oldfort that it’s time for your kids to work out a more adult relationship with their cousin. As high school kids thinking about college, they aren’t too young to set limits with difficult peers.</p>

<p>So this is your MOTHER IN LAW? Where is your spouse? This is his/ her mother. Why does he/she not speak up?</p>

<p>When my MIL has done “unacceptable things” it is my HUSBAND…her son who speaks up, and it has worked every time. My husband and I present a united front…together…but my husband does most of the talking.</p>

<p>With regards to bragging…just say “that’s nice” after the first phrase and walk away. Repeat as often as needed.</p>

<p>Next time there is a family dinner, switch seating places with your daughter Donahue can eat in peace. You can put it in the house of “I wanted to have the chance to talk to niecey poo” who likely won’t talk to you anyway…and if she sticks her fingers in YOUR food , you can deal with it.</p>

<p>I couldn’t help but notice that while the OP began as a post about MIL, it was really a hateagram directed at the 15 yo destined to become a drug whore. Sounds like a lovely family dynamic. There are TWO problems going on here. One is that the spouse needs to stand up to MIL and tell her to just stop. Stop bragging, stop comparing, stop one-upping. If she continues, the family should exist the scene as soon as and as gracefully as possible.</p>

<p>Second problem is the OP’s relationship with the niece. OP seems far too invested in how much better her kids are than the niece and how terrible the niece is. If niece acts improperly, OP should speak up, but also tell her kids how to speak for themselves. Even little kids know right from wrong. The rest- what she’s posting to whom, whatever alienware is, whether the kid goes to a crappy school or at least one that’s not as good as HER kids, and so forth really has no impact on HER or her kids. As bad as MIL is regarding comparing grandchildren, seems like OP’s doing quite a bit of comparing herself.</p>

<p>Revenge is a plate best eaten cold.</p>

<p>In a few years when your daughter is successful in college you will have satisfaction. If the niece continues on the path she is on then it is likely she will not do well in college no matter how much money Grandma donates.</p>

<p>Chill, time will take care of this issue.</p>

<p>Good advice here. Switch the seating at meal time. Talk to your daughter about not being a doormat for this brat. And ignore your MIL. The “that’s nice” response, with a hasty departure sounds like a good approach. She obviously doesn’t know what she’s talking about - so why give what she says any weight.</p>

<p>My husband is adopted and mil has spent her life rubbing that in to my husbands face, then mine. My husband says he is sick of it too, but it is as if he is afraid to stand up to her. I told my children to not respond to niece, just walk away. Niece gets great joy out of getting in to my children’s faces. Mil has stood there, laughing, egging it on. </p>

<p>My son has been very stressed over having to see them today. I told him he could stay home and I will tell them he has homework. My husband used to get ulcers when he was growing up from the stress of them. We ended up spending several years out of contact. At this point, we see them just a handful of times a year. They told my husband that because he is adopted, he is not “real” family. They prefer to spend their time with bio family. Which is insulting, but fine because they are not pleasant to be around. My daughter has shown amazing grace in how she deals with them. MIL is nasty to my daughter.</p>

<p>I have told my dh that he needs to be the one to deal with them. We even went to counseling over this situation years ago. However, my dh just emotionally cannot handle things with them the scars run too deep. He actually pretty much blanks out when there. Not kidding on that either. Even my teens have noticed that dh sits there, staring off in to space, not responding to anyone the entire time.</p>

<p>There is little need to cut off contact at this point. We hear from them maybe 6 times a year, and go over for a couple hours. </p>

<p>As far as nieces parents go…sil is a single parent basically, who doesn’t feel like parenting. Partying takes precedence over her daughter in sil’s life. I know that is sad. But I lost my mom to a brain aneurysm when I was younger than niece (my mom lived, but spent years in the hospital, has multiple surgeries, etc). At her age, regardless of what you grow up with, it is still a choice to treat people the way she does. </p>

<p>We agreed years ago that dh would deal with this, but I am just going to tell dh that if he does not step in today, I will. I think I need to go mentally prepare myself for this visit today. I think this relationship would have permanently ended years ago, but FIL is disabled, with major brain damage, and seems to really want to see dh. He even cries sometimes when we arrive or leave. Mil claims its just the stroke damage, but I think it is nice to believe (and accurate) that someone in that family gives a crap about my adopted husband.</p>

<p>OMG. What a horrible story. I had a feeling there was more to it. I am so sorry. For your husband to grow up with a mother who doesn’t love him the way she does her other kids is just beyond comprehension. It astonishes me how terrible people can be, even (especially?) to those they are supposed to love. Good luck.</p>

<p>Wow! Interesting in-laws.</p>

<p>I’d tell MIL that DD and DS are auto admits to whereever, but they have many other options as well. And then change the subject. And my kids would not sit down to a meal next to the niece. Put your kids between your DH and yourself. No other sitting option…or sit next to the niece yourself (you on one side, DH on the other).</p>

<p>I’d likely deal for the handfull of times a year, especially given FIL’s situation. But I would vent about it. Good Luck</p>

<p>After making my last post, I went to my husband and laid it out there everything I said here. He looked pensive, but did not respond. So, I just left it out there that if he doesn’t stand up for us today, I will. And if I do, it will likely not go over as well as it would if he does. And I left. </p>

<p>Then, he comes up to me a short bit later and tells me he understands and agrees. He is working hard on this and he WILL do what needs to be done today if there are any issues. I don’t think we will have as many issues today because my teens won’t be there for MIL and niece to harass. But I am sure MIL will take opportunities to put her jabs in. We will see. I am just going to be prepared to respond to her usual jabs and help dh prepare. Mostly, dh just wants to visit with FIL.</p>

<p>I have a wretched niece, as well. There are two whole threads devoted to her wedding. She has been a miserable human being since she was a toddler, and we always comforted ourselves that karma would eventually catch up with her. It didn’t. She is a wealthy, attractive, successful professional woman married to a wonderful young man and living the high life. She still has no soul.</p>

<p>What I don’t understand is why you didn’t get in niece’s face over the food thing. A serious threat to knock her on her backside should put an end to that. Alternatively, pick up her plate and rub it in her face. It’s really ok to be the bad guy. I’m that person with my niece and she walks a wide path around me and my kids.</p>

<p>Much to my amusement, my niece has decided she wants to follow the same career path as my D1, who is employed in her field thanks to the intervention of CC poster Sybbie, and now want advice and help from my D. My told her to pack salt.</p>

<p>The reason I did not say anything about the maggot incident is that I was not close enough to know what was going on. All I know is my daughter got up from the table and left. I had previously coached my children to walk away when niece is doing that stuff. The situation with my niece grabbing the food from my daughter, the entire plate while my daughter ate, I was there for and kick myself for not doing something. I have reached the point where I am not going to stay quiet. It is clear my dh is not going to deal with any of this (he says he will today, but I will step in after a two second pause if he does not today). There likely won’t be much to step in on today as my teens won’t be there.</p>

<p>If the only reason to visit, is so that your H can spend time with is dad, why doesn’t he just do that on his own? Is it too far away to reach easily without a second driver?</p>

<p>I don’t understand why you feel that you must make this trip. Do you want to visit with your FIL too?</p>

<p>I agree with Happy, why not either have just DH or you and DH make short (no meal) visits with the FIL?</p>

<p>Also, I agree with Frazzled, you cannot change sick or stupid, so you can only change yourself. In my experience the best way to deal with this is to a} protect your kids, simply avoid interactions for them b} find the way to give them no power over you. You do not respect or honor her, so you don’t really care about her opinion. But it is easy to get sucked in.</p>

<p>I find that protecting your children and consciously remembering that you don’t care what they think is helpful in emotionally distancing yourself from hurtful people.</p>