Sunday, September 21, 2008

Save the drama

Why oh why do things have to be so difficult.  My brother in law (BIL) and sister in law (his wife) are expecting their first baby.  And of course this is a wonderful event for the family.  But it just happened that they announced their pregnancy a few days after I found out that I would need a 3rd myomectomy to remove uterine fibroids.  I was very emotional and very jealous.  But I was happy for them too.  But the hurt I was feeling for myself took over everything.  But I made myself send them a congratulatory card and a few baby gifts.  And it took a lot of me to do it.  A lot.  I think only those of you who have experienced these types of feelings can understand.

Lets go back in time a bit-  BIL has always had it in for me.  Didn't congratulate me for getting my PhD.  Didn't want me to be in the family only wedding photos even though I had already been a member of their family for 3 years at the time (My husband and his grandma made me stand in the photos anyway).  I have many more examples of this behavior.  The other thing is he is very self-centered.  If he has done well at something we all better bow down to his majesty.  He sent us out a Christmas List every year even though he is an adult, and called to ask my husband if something was wrong because he hadn't recieved his annual birthday gift on time (it was in themail).  Good grief.

Fast forward to now-  So I didn't shower him and his wife with praise for managing to get pregnant on the first try.  So I haven't actually talked to them about it.  But I did send something.  Well I had the afore mentioned surgery two weeks ago, still managed to send him out a thoughtful birthday gift (on-time), and I have heard nothing from him or his wife.  I don't expect them to call me.  At this point they may even be trying to shield me in some way and that is why they haven't called to see what is going on with me.  Haven't sent an email.  A text.  Anything would be acceptable by me.  But nothing.  Perhaps I deserve this.  But I really thought by sending the card and gift it would have been enough for them to know I care.  

Fast forward to last years surgery-  When thinking about it I really don't remember them calling or anything after that surgery either.  So maybe it isn't that they are mad at me now.  Maybe they just don't really care one way or the other.

Back to now- I really don't know what is going to happen to this family.  I do not want to be the one responsible for all the drama.  But I don't really know how to fix this.  I don't know if I can.  Believe me when I say talking to them about this will not do a thing.  The only thing that could possibly work is me calling them and asking detailed questions about their pregnancy and sending lavish gifts and cash.  But that only helps one side.  I don't think that they will ever really treat me with kindness, ever.  
My mother in law is coming next weekend to "show her support" of my IF and surgery and all that.  I wonder if it would do any good to explain any of this to her.  What do you think?  Will this just make things worse.  My poor husband is stuck in the middle.  


Michelle said...

I think you did all you need to do. I know problems with BIL, I do not get along with mine either. He told the whole family I am just with my husband (who I have been with for 15 years) for his money. I am still waiting to see what money he is talking about because the last time I checked we were broke (unless my husband is hiding it from me hehehe). If talking to your MIL will make you feel better then I say do it but try to work it into a conversation some how so it doesn't really seem like you are defending yourself because I don't think you need to defend yourself at all. Good Luck! I hope things go well for you I definitely know how you feel. ((HUGS))

theworms said...

First of all BIG ((((HUGS))). IL's are such a pain in the ass and I share your pain. Do you think telling her will improve the situation? Does she get your side or does she only side with her kids? Whatever you do I hope it helps. Ultimately you may need to accept the fact that they will never be kind to you they way you want them to be and if you do reach out to them, they may never do the same to you. GL

Megs said...

Sorry to hear about another surgery. I think you have done everything that you should do at this point in letting them know you care and are supportive of them. Maybe one of these days they will come around. Not really sure about talking to your MIL. If you feel it would help then go for it. :) I hope things work out. Hang in there!

Here from ICLW! :)

Anniep said...

Family can be such a pain, huh? My BIL is weird, too. Completely self centered, at the expense of MIL/FIL and us. Wouldn't come to the family reunion (with ONLY grandkid) because they had been there before on vacation once. Hell-o? Like it might not be all about you for once? Really?
Anywho, you are not alone.
(from ICLW)

junebug said...

HUGS! I've had four people (family and friends) have babies or announce in the past four months. So far I have only sent cards and gifts. It is all I can do and all I should be expected to do. I've decided that if they can't understand my position then they are not caring enough about me to mess with. I will continue to do what I can and move on. I shall kill them with kindness whenever I possibly can. Wish you the best of luck. In-laws can be a real pain or learning experience whichever way you like to look at it.
Here via ICLW.

Anonymous said...

I think that your BIL is being unreasonable. You sent a card and some stuff. What more does he want??? Seriously! He sounds like a spoiled jerk. He's not a toddler who just used the potty for the first time! He's a grown man... yay, he managed to make a baby... now he needs to stop acting like one himself!

SAHW said...

Ugh...I hate in-law drama. You have done your part and done it don't worry about it anymore. I probably wouldn't bring it up, but depends on what your MIL is like...for mine, I would casually say something about being happy about their good news and that I sent them something but didn't hear back, guess they're, I would let her know I had sent something and not heard back, and leave it at that.
Sorry you have to deal with this on top of everything else. :(

Cassandra said...

Thanks for your ICLW comment (BTW, I also posted about culture and IF last month, )...

I'm wondering why you are trying as hard as you are? Because your husband wants to, to protect his relationship with his brother, or something else? In my house, relatives who demand gifts and/or don't thank us for thoughtful gifts stop receiving gifts. You have given your BIL far more leeway than I would have. Good luck working it out, esp. with their new announcement.