How to manage toxic, overbearing & unreasonable In-Laws

Hi mommies, it’s a long sharing. Please bear with me. I contemplated very long before I had the courage to share this on a public platform as I really felt lost and doubted myself if I were really the one being difficult. Admin, feel free to remove if deemed inappropriate. I’m having issues with my entire in-laws family which started way before my marriage. Yes, I knw it’s a red flag and I might be silly to even consider such a marriage after tolerating for 7-8 yrs but I did it anyway out of love for my hub as he’s really a good bf & hub to me, and good father to my newborn. So please save on crude comments if you have any. Let’s start off with my SIL. I have a competitive narcissistic SIL, whom back then kept thinking everyone was after her hub (then bf). Even her own sister also couldn’t escape from her insecurities. Everytime when they came over for dinner, any younger female who sat next to her hub or wore the same coloured top would receive the death stare and cold shoulder from her. The guy, being a divorcee had to live in the shadows for a few months as he was going thru the divorce papers while dating her, and she warned us not to post any photos of them albeit those were being used as evidence of adultery. He had a son but heard he abandoned both wife n son, and even resorted to violence on his ex. She later got married to him within 6 months of dating and insisted the guy to buy her an EC just to prove that they self-claimed “well off”. She then started being arrogant, stalkish and cyber-bullying me but claimed it was not targeting at me. Initially I thought it was pure coincidence. But later realised her posts were always so happened to be in response or related to what I shared/ posted every single time. E.g. I shared happy moments, or when hub got me smth new, next moment she would post smth similar e.g. her hub got her smth similar of a different brand and #besthubever. OR if if something happened during our gathering that she felt insecure about she would indirectly lashed out using memes or quotes the very next moment. It happened for so many occasions and even on my wedding day, which I observed hence the conclusion. Not even any well-wishes btw, and just turned up for free food. I consulted Friends about this situation n they told me she has insecurity issues. But did not know why I became her target. Ever since then, I blocked her from my social accounts. Later did I know from her relatives and my hub that she was like this since young. She was also snubbing everyone around her especially me and her own brother for being “poorer” than her hub and couldn’t live up to their “atas” standards. And almost every meet-up was her giving critical comments about how we are not comparable to them, needing to treat them like “royalties” ,how other’s branded stuff are fakes, (she literally questioned the authenticity of her sister’s bff Branded bag at the table of her own sister’s wedding dinner! And said my stuff were fakes as I often visited Indo as I had close relative staying there. Little did she knew my parents fly to Europe yearly to help replenish my stash actually. I just put up with her nonsense seeing that she’s rather naive and a tad “crazy” obsessive of me and hub’s life back then. FYI I did not reveal anything about my financial status since dating time even till now hence they kept having the illusion that I’m just a poor girl who live off my bf/hub. Even when they visited my relative and hosted their entire family for meals and trips, there were no gratitude but made comment like “oh her relative business is only like that…” I have seen my fair share of crazy rich asians and I must say “the Fools” are not even close to any wealth ranking of my own relatives who own landed properties in Sg. Rude AF. Zero manners, zero culture, basically just a pair of cantankerous nutcase from the village. And this, even their own relatives openly agree. She kept boasting her in-laws are richer, etc tbh they are juz normal pple with normal income living in a 5rm flat juz that maybe they had a bit more savings to spare than her own parents. There were even moments she felt embarrassed of her own parents for not being able to fork out money to contribute to her EC and later had to resort to borrow from her in-laws for downpayment, and told all her siblings that her own parents are poor and did not have any money to spare. This SIL also had hygiene issues. She basically dipped her utensils into a shared hotpot knowing she was sick with flu but her flu was only disclosed to us after the 3 days trip! Eventually a few of us sharing the same pot too fell ill! I eventually had to spend hundreds on a few doc visits with injections! And yet she still has the audacity to say she and her hub are both “well brought up!”. Such crass. Basically her hub just stood by and watch her weird and ridiculous acts and attitudes. Which basically proved my point. This delusional pair definitely deserve each other. Despite doing all these, me and hub did attempt to try understand why she was feeling this way and being so passive aggressive and insecure. She basically manipulated the entire conversation, shed crocodile tears juz cuz she wanted her “follower” sister back by her side, because back then her sis also could not tolerate her and became distant with her, but closer to me and hub. So she became jealous. She spun and made up stories on how she did not want to see all of us like enemies etc. But after having her little follower back safely back by her side, She then continued with her attacks. And when confronted, even had the cheek to say she didn’t know what she did to trigger our hostility. Me and hub decided to leave them in their own self-delusional bubble and stayed exclusively away from them. My PIL basically put up with all her nonsense, stood by her and told me and hub that we were too petty for sharing our thoughts and concerns with them- (those are hers and my hub’s own parents), and that us being older than them, should give in to them instead of holding on to grudges. All these I’ve put up with for 7-8yrs, I even helped with my PILs’ finances when they were not doing well back then and they harboured quite huge debts. I was still work-studying, back then before getting married. And I kept mum about it as it’s in the name of my hub /my MiL then. So much for helping when I am not obliged to. After all these, We did try to avoid that SIL & her hub, ignoring them, and have nothing to do with them for a few years. I basically blocked all of them out of my social media and WhatsApp. The only contact were the few gatherings and my PILs boastings at almost every meal time. But his parents kept wanting us to “suck up” to them and even reprimanded us for not waiting for them to arrive on a “red carpet” during CNYs, or dinner gatherings, and demanded us to give them red packets during their special occasions. We eventually gave the Ang baos to them since my PILs insisted in order to avoid more drama. Despite the goodwill, we did not even receive a single simple “thank you” nor acknowledgement from them to say that they have received. Rude and such uncouth behaviour coming from full grown adults. But what to do ? Given that they are such money-minded 贪小便宜people. I later got married, and wanted to rent our own space while waiting for our new place to be ready. However after much persuasion from my hub, we moved in with my PIL because my MiL insisted. Almost every meal time my PIL had to bring up topic on their “rich” daughter and expected me to be awed by her “royal craziness” but I was so turned off that eventually I refused to have dinner with them and ordered my own meals and ate in my room instead. The loneliness and helplessness during that period was too painful. Worse still, they kept barging in saying things like “why do you need to work so hard? It’s already 5/6pm! “ halfway during my work meetings even after multiple reminders. Whenever I visit my parents on weekends my PIL would comment why I kept going back. Why can’t have meals with them. Yet, they kept asking and allowing their daughters to frequently come back for meals. What double standards. My parents kept asking me to go home for dinner to make sure I eat healthily instead of ordering from food delivery or having my PILs unhealthy meals (canned food, frozen preserved meat, overnight dishes etc) I became pregnant last year. During this period both my PILs contracted covid and refused to be isolated. I was anxious and felt lost and scared as I’ve heard about covid complications for pregnant women. My own parent’s place too had covid cases and told me not to go back hence, I had no choice but to spend thousands of bucks to book myself a hotel for one week, and isolated myself from them. Yet, they told their own daughter who just gave birth to avoid coming over so as not to infect them. My MIL has the habit of not using sharing utensils. When my MIL just got tested negative, she hosted some relatives for lunch and claimed she’s ok and used her own chopsticks to take food for people and proudly claimed “oh I don’t use sharing utensils one” then kept mixing the shared ingredients with her saliva. I immediately said I was full and stopped eating. Literally same as her daughter…上梁不正下梁歪。 I recently gave birth to my first born. My PILs had been longing to take care of my newborn but I engaged a confinement nanny and paid for the service myself, as I knew what they are like and there would definitely be conflicts. True enough, my MiL started telling neighbours, relatives, friends about how I did not want her to do my confinement when she volunteered. A neighbour later questioned me why I did not let my MIL do confinement. We confronted my PILs about this but they brushed us off by saying those people twisted their words and that was not what my MIL said. When my nanny came onboard, MIL questioned my nanny’s ability to take care of baby, kept interfering with nanny’s work process. She later kept asking nanny if I can eat certain food during confinement! So she basically had no knowledge on how to do confinement so I’m pretty glad I stuck with my decision. Everyday without fail, when I was trying to breastfeed she would barge in and asked “Are you done? We want to carry our grandson. Are you done? We haven’t carried him today. It’s our time to carry him. “ She even ranted to nanny about me being difficult and that DILs in the past are not so fussy, MiL say what they do what, MiL cook what they eat what. Excuse me, DIL last time do not need to work too nor pay for anything! And then went over to the relatives side to say that I am overly anxious about baby, as I did not allow them to touch baby without washing or sanitising their hands. They had a cockroach infested kitchen with unclean pots and pans stored away for goodness sakes. I later refused to eat my MiL’s cooking and she made it into another affair of me not appreciating her “good”cooking which even nanny disapproved of. Then got upset because I rather ordered grab food and nanny’s food over hers, whereby I totally have no control over my food cravings before and after birth! My PILs also literally shoved us parents aside while we were learning how to tend to baby and judging us if we even know how. My poor Baby cried while his diaper was being changed and they juz pushed us away and carried him up while we were changing halfway. We are first-time parents for goodness sake! That’s why we need to learn from nanny! They judged our “taste” of buying furnitures and necessities for baby and kept commenting on why we did not consult that narcissistic daughter of hers as she also had a newborn recently. I was already boiling then. The comparison with their newborn granddaughter with my son was also endless. With all these endless judgement and comments, I eventually became depressive and even had thoughts of suicide. My first two weeks at PILs’ place was a nightmare as I basically drowned myself in tears every waking moment. Together with my kid’s high level of jaundice, I literally did not do proper confinement for first 2 weeks. My hub saw me in this state and brought me back to my parent’s place to extend and complete my confinement proper for another extra month. And we thought the nightmare would end. No. My PILs continued to air their “grievances” to everyone they met and labelled me as a difficult DIL (at this point in time I really can’t be bothered. I was suffering from csect wound infection, sus PPD and had a newborn to care for). They even said they lose face as PIL cuz I had to move back to my parent’s place halfway thru confinement, and it’s a sign to others that they did not take care of me well. Then when we told them the issues, they kept being in denial and asked what did they do wrong for us to treat them this way. I had enough of their toxic behaviour, victimising themselves and bullying me, hence with that, I stayed away from them till date. All these were only a portion of what I went thru. There were many more traumatic incidents that happened and even till today it’s still happening. They labelled me as “哑狗咬死人”, (mute dog can bite a person to death) said things like if my hub listened to me he would “完蛋” (be gone case). We confronted them about these and as usual they conveniently denied and said we 无中生有(created a mountain out of molehill/ fabricated lies). Even my own mom got dragged into this lie fabrication machine and got slandered for things she did not do. My whole family were furious mad. Mom wanted to get her lawyer to sue them for defamation but I told her it’s not worth the hassle. So When we confronted them about the lies they spread, they basically lied through their teeth and denied everything. Me and hub finally moved into our own nest recently. My PIL called up and demanded to see my son as they said he carries their family name and that my son belongs to them. I was furious as they basically contributed NOTHING since my wedding to the birth of my son except trauma and drama to me and MY NUCLEUS FAMILY. Anyway My son gonna bear BOTH our surnames, not just theirs. They still felt they did nothing wrong (including their daughter) and I was being oversensitive. But over the years I’ve seen how they bullied the younger generations of their own relatives and juz swept it under the carpet in the name of wanting “peace and harmony” and that one should not bear grudges. But when it happened to them they literally made a big fuss out of it and demanded apology from the other party. I concluded the entire family of 6 all are max toxic level with mental health issues and the SILs & BILs definitely chips off the old blocks. I have no idea how to reconcile and do not wish to do so. Because I know this is not the kind of environment nor upbringing that I want my kid to be part of / grow up in. But i know I’m putting hub in a spot too as he felt he is being unfilial for limiting visitation from his own parents but he did reassure me that I have his support no matter my decision. I’m quite lost on what to do next..and would like to seek advices from fellow mommies here. Please do not judge and if you have no positive advices or comments to share, kindly scroll away. Thanks so much mommies ❤️ #pleasehelp #PleaseAdvice

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hey babe, reading thru ur story, ur in-laws have much similarity to mine.. its been 4yrs living with them and nothing short of hell on earth.. I lost count the number of times I had screaming matches with the in-laws, and my husband, separately and together.. I never thought it would come to tis and never knew it was possible to hate 2 old persons so much, sometimes I feel ashamed & guilty! but thinking back the things they did to me and my kids, I really wonder what I did in my past lives to deserve to be in the situation I am in... I told my husband that one day, when we call it quits (our marriage), its cos of his parents, nothing else.. I actually went to see a marriage counsellor and she actually told me to move out, there is no other way if I want to keep tis marriage.. so now I am counting down to the days left to getting keys to our own place 😊 I've no plans to reconcile or visit my in-laws, maybe only during special occasions? dun think they are thick skin enough to come visit thou our new place is just a stone throw away...

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hey there, it is really not easy for you, but there are couple of things you can do to keep yourself sane. just do what is necessary and avoid getting into conflicts with your in-laws. do not be bothered by what they told the neighbours, you don't live for the neighbours, you live for yourself. I also have a story to share. My grandmother told my mother to give my younger sister to her own daughter who is infertile. I know you feel terrible. but there are also people who had it worse but manage to hang in there. I am not trying to brush off what you are going through, but just wanted you to know that you are not alone. treat yourself well by ignoring all the unnecessary noises around you

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After reading what you shared, I too have to admit I feel similarly about my in laws. I am pregnant with my first child and very worried as I don’t agree with my in laws’ way of upbringing children. How I would love to cut contact with them 🥲 but out of respect for my husband, I have to quietly bear with whatever unhappiness I have. I think your in laws are toxic and it’s good that you’ve minimised contact with them. Think doubly hard about reconciling, especially since you’re treated as secondary class citizens.

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1y ago

I was like you before pregnancy. Out of respect for my husband, I put up with SIL and PIL. Upset but have to put up a smiling front in front of them and relatives and play along as if they are the best PIL ever, because they cared a lot about “face”. But eventually I realised it’s either I have sanity and be able to function well as a new mom to care for whole family proper or let them the supposed happiness they demand and you watching them suffer alone in unhappiness which will slowly lead to depression overtime. Not sure about the relationship u have with ur in-laws, but i would suggest once u deliver, stay away to recuperate physically and emotionally first before you face them with your newborn. They have all the time to meet newborn after that, but once you fall into PPD caused by them the emotional scar will always be there. Don’t be like me.

they are too toxic to be in your life. it’s not easy to manage this with your husband. i wouldn’t attempt to reconcile if i were you… because while you can try to change, they may not be ready to. with your own house comes a bit more peace. regarding visiting, what would you be comfortable with? would you be ok if he visits them alone? and you just meet them on festive/family occasions? do discuss this with your husband. your mental health is more important than anything.

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12mo ago

your FIL sounds just like mine! always cuts me off, never lets me finish my sentences, thinks I'm the dumbest person in the room...

For me, I really cannot act like I will be okay and face these toxic people. I won’t even try to understand them and consider the reconciliation. I would just hope they are gone from my life and husband can respect and support my decision.

Hang in there mummy! Kudos to ur husband for being so supportive!