Well done

Commenter Laura returned to describe how her changed attitude transformed her family dynamic and resolved the problems she was having with her mother-in-law (see here for previous post):

just an update and maybe this might help some others. Since I have last wrote things have been absolutely wonderful in our marriage!

I knew having his mother back in our lives would be horrible and unbearable but I also knew being the barrier between my husband and his mother trying to come back into our lives would also end in the same result. I decided to start sending her pictures trying to show her I was accepting her arrival back into our lives. She never responded not even one time but when my husband used my phone he seen the messages called her to ask why she never responded and she told him she had nothing to say or she would have.this continued with me offering to drive an hour away so she could see the baby and some other nice gestures but the more i accept the situation the more it ticks her off and now she no longer wants to come over or put her two cents in on anything negative.

So its been nice! Haven’t heard from her and my husband told her on the phone in front of me to not say anything negative about his wife to him or don’t bother calling. (this would never have happened in the past)

So nice gestures and letting my husband lead the situation fully, with no side comments on my part has helped greatly. Although yes this is exactly what I tried in the past and it didn’t help at all but this time around I guess bc now he doesn’t take small gestures like that for granted anymore.

Three quick observations:

  1. Laura starving her mother-in-law of drama by containing her own reactions caused her mother-in-law to lose interest in stirring up trouble.  Drama is like crack to a troublesome mother-in-law.  By withholding the drama, the incentive to stir up trouble was greatly reduced.
  2. Once her husband was no longer trying to manage being manipulated by women on both sides, he quite naturally became protective of his wife.
  3. Laura doesn’t say this outright, but her husband telling his mother to knock it off under his own authority caused his mother to settle down.  This isn’t always a given, but often mothers in this type of situation will demonstrate a sense of relief.

While Laura is obviously tempted to rationalize that letting her husband lead wasn’t what delivered the different results, clearly she was able to let him lead enough to get those different results.  Especially when something is counter intuitive, often we have to learn a particular lesson multiple times before we stop fighting reality and accept it.  I suspect this isn’t the end of Laura’s mother-in-law troubles, but even so she does have peace now, as well as a template she can go back to if she succumbs to temptation and starts trying to out manipulate her mother-in-law.

Well done Laura.

This entry was posted in Headship, Mother-in-law, Submission. Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to Well done

  1. Pingback: Well done | Neoreactive

  2. Pingback: Well done | Manosphere.com

  3. Laura says:

    As a reminder, I am NOT the Laura with the MIL problem. But I am very pleased to hear that things are working out for the other Laura.

  4. mmaier2112 says:

    Great to read. God bless the Laura in question and her family, even her bitchy MIL.

  5. Thanks for updating laura! It’s very encouraging to hear.

  6. Gunner Q says:

    Always good to hear a success story.

  7. Spike says:

    Encouraging. It shows that when men are allowed to be men, things happen for the better, just as they have for – oh, I don’t know – 5 000 to 10000 years!

  8. GeminiXcX says:

    Well done Laura

    Well done to her husband as well.


  9. GeminiXcX says:

    As a reminder, I am NOT the Laura with the MIL problem.

    I figured as much; her avatar is purple, with a diamond pattern. 😉


  10. I find with my MIL to be that we just can’t get along. The part of my character she doesn’t like is that I dislike emotionally heated arguments and am blunt with my opinions. She seems to love drama and is confused when I don’t talk. So we will be being courteous and then she will bring something up, if she doesn’t like my response she will stir and when I withhold emotional feedback she gets even angrier. If I stay completely calm throughout she winds herself up until she flips and says she doesn’t want to see me ever again. Right now I prefer the distance, to be honest. Unsure what will happen when kids appear.

  11. Julian O'Dea says:


    MILs not getting on with DILs is more common than people seem to think.

    I like to joke that my wife and my mother got along for all of about 15 minutes.

    From a man’s perspective, it is a lot better than having them “gang up” on you.

  12. Trust says:

    Glad to hear. It makes sense that a controlling DIL would have problems because a MIL outranks her in the matriarchy.

    One other complicating factor though is that a man’s mother may be the only woman that won’t give the wife a “you go girl’ for mistreating him. Very much like feminists who are just fine with stripping due process from men until it is their son who is hurt by it.

    In any case, best to let the man deal with his own mother. She’s not only the higher matriarch, but she will likely view the DIL as harming her son and fight all the harder.

  13. Novaseeker says:

    From a man’s perspective, it is a lot better than having them “gang up” on you.

    Yes, as long as it doesn’t go defcon 5, you don’t want them on the same team. It’s bad for any man.

  14. peregrinejohn says:

    As the proverb says, “If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you.”

    Works like a charm, and often (as the example above shows) for reasons unexpected.

    In unrelated news, “Defcon 5” is “Lowest state of readiness.”

  15. Men were created to be in the headship position(under Christ as their head).

    Women were created to be in the submissive position under Christ AND a man.

    Relationships never work right until the proper divine order is established and operated in.

  16. Marissa says:

    What kind of advice do you suggest for the opposite situation, where the parents of the wife don’t like the husband, criticize him to the husband and wife’s faces, etc.? Is it best to just stay quiet or maybe avoid them as much as possible? I won the lottery with my in-laws, but my husband didn’t with his.

  17. Boxer says:

    Very much like feminists who are just fine with stripping due process from men until it is their son who is hurt by it.

    From all the stories I’ve read, it’s far more likely for a man’s mother to side with his abusive wife. I imagine this often happens as a lame attempt to curry favor with the one who holds the keys to the grandchildren in divorce.

    Bill Price used to talk about this over on Spearhead. Many men find their parents instant turncoats in divorce or separation.


  18. feeriker says:

    From all the stories I’ve read, it’s far more likely for a man’s mother to side with his abusive wife. I imagine this often happens as a lame attempt to curry favor with the one who holds the keys to the grandchildren in divorce.

    Quite true. There’s also the mother who, after (pretending that she has been?) supporting her son while his wife is in “rebellious harridan” mode, starts in with “I told you again and again to stay away from that disgusting pyscho bitch, but you didn’t listen.* You’ve made your bed hard, now you get to sleep in it.”

    More than a few such mothers have fanned the flames of destruction of their sons’ marriages, deliberately or subconsciously.

    (*Even when she never said any such thing, ever, and when her daughter-in-law showed not a single sign of being a conniving, rebellious bitch, or indeed was even behaving like the polar opposite of such.)

  19. Gunner Q says:

    Marissa @ 12:25 pm:
    “What kind of advice do you suggest for the opposite situation, where the parents of the wife don’t like the husband, criticize him to the husband and wife’s faces, etc.?”

    Easy, back up your husband. Ways to do this:

    1. Ask your parents to respect your husband. Point out that he is, in fact, their son.

    2. Brag about your husband in casual conversation. This is a good habit anyway.

    3. Let your man handle any persisting drama. You don’t need to fix the problem. Relax and follow his lead.

  20. BradA says:

    My mother never would have tried stuff like that because I wouldn’t have put up with it. She never did have a real connection to my wife and would only talk to me even though they had more social-type activities in common. I don’t have to worry about it at all now though, so it doesn’t matter much there.

    My wife gets along reasonably well with the one d-i-l we have contact with.

  21. Marissa says:

    Thanks, Gunner Q. Simple yet sounds effective.

  22. Julian O'Dea says:

    If you, as a man, have a good MIL, she can be worth her weight in rubies (or some such biblical sounding thing).

    Mine is certainly a gem. I am fairly sure she has actually corrected my wife on a few occasions, along the lines of, you need to support your husband by … etc. Young wives are never really mature in their role and that is what older women are for, to help them settle.

    As my wife likes to say, you “marry a family”. Very true.

  23. >MILs not getting on with DILs is more common than people seem to think.

    Womminz not getting along. Say i’ taint so Dalrock. LOLOLLZZZ.

  24. Dragonfly says:

    “What kind of advice do you suggest for the opposite situation, where the parents of the wife don’t like the husband, criticize him to the husband and wife’s faces, etc.? ”

    I had a cousin like that… she’s a hard core feminist, hated that we got married young, hated the idea that I married as a virgin (actually asked me on my wedding day if I truly had). And so she felt she was able to make snide remarks to him or around him when we were at family gatherings. He handled it well, but I told her very strongly something that put her in her place, something about her comment being rude and insensitive. And then stared her down. (lol)….

    We didn’t come back for a year to see that side of her family. And when we did come back, her tone had done a 180… suddenly she loved him, a few years ago even pulled out a pic of us that first year saying how we were babies and in so in love.

    Just put your foot down that NO ONE will disrespect him. They either respect your husband, your leader of your NEW family you’re creating, or they lose you.

  25. Pingback: Revisiting the question of a troublesome mother-in-law. | Dalrock

  26. I am another Laura and when I read your article written about Laura’s MAIL issues it was like reading something written for me as well because aside from having the same name, the issues I’ve faced seem identical. Husband and I eloped this august to avoid the drama – husband’s mother is separated from his father (they broke up when my husband was five) , husband has a twin sister who is very much like his mother. When I began dating him the hate campaign against me didn’t take long and the mother brought his sister into it. They’ve both treated me horribly, I won’t go into it, I’ll just say they thrive on drama and have tried to create a lot of it in order to destabilise this relationship. Husband and I had a post elopement wedding reception end of this November and the whole event proved why it was right to elope. We didn’t want drama at the wedding, but the reception was like a wedding in which families came together from all over the country and Australia (we are in NZ) and it was the first time my family had met his mum sister and dad. The dad is lovely (though MIL and SIL always have a lot of hateful things to say about him)… My aunties who put together most of the reception set it up with his mum and his sister and after it was all said and done all three of my aunties said MIL was “horrible”. They are all Christian women who would never say something like this about someone else unless there were very good reasons to – she derailed their plans for the reception, had to have everything her way, was uncompromising and lied about what we had agreed she could do. Aunties were doing food for 50 odd guests (making it) was to be finger foods and not a traditional sit down, roving supper type thing and husband called his mother well before party to make sure she was on same page, we said she could help with decorations and provide supper stuff and snacks but in the end she put all these long tables to imply a sit down, made my aunt put all her hand made foods in the freezer because she had ordered catering for 70 people and didn’t want to compromise and told my aunties that husband and I had asked her to cater for 70 people (untrue). My dad and grandma did a speech at the reception, both welcome my husband to the family and said very warm and lovely things. His mum did a speech and never mentioned my name once, in fact started the speech by saying husband and his twin sister “are like chalk and cheese” (opposites) and that my husband is “welcome through her back door any time”… most people had no idea what the meant, husband said it just meant her back door at home is the only one she uses. I wondered if it meant doing things in covert ways. Another thing was my aunties wanted photos of my husband from when he was little to add to the family photo tree and husband asked her well in advance before the party and she said no, that she wouldn’t provide any such photos because I had apparently not wanted her as part of the family before so why start now? Husband said she had implied, however, that he would “probably” get some photos eventually. We didn’t push the matter, not wanting to beg her for photos of her son to add to the photo tree for the party. Most mother’s would be proud to provide this. In the end … At the party there was this beautiful tree thing my aunties had made with fairy lights around it and butterflies , it had pictures or me when I was little and a picture or my grandfather who is in heaven now. No pictures of my husband as a child. At the party I asked husband it he could enquire with her about the he pictures, he went and asked her and she told him that we were meant to get back to her about it…

    I’ve done what I can in the past to reach out by writing letters to both the mum and sister, I’ve given gifts… Perfume… photographs…even a restaurant voucher once for husband and his mum to have to go out together, just the two of them. Never receive thank you or acknowledgement. In the past when that happened, I would ask husband about it like did she get the gift, have to prompt… Then he’d act like mouthpiece only when prompted to say for her that she “says thank you”. I even wrote her a poem for her bday , put it on nice paper, painted it and framed it. Of course no thank you or acknowledgement.

    And I admit that I have dealt with this in ways that are counterintuitive by saying things like “talk to your mother” I would say “stand up for yourself” but clearly my actions have said the opposite because he is naturally more a pacifist who avoids conflict and like your article said, men who react this way have already been raised to be manipulated. My personality type is INFP (idealist) and usually quite passive myself unless my principles and values are disrespected. I do want my husband to stand up for himself but I know now that by telling him directions I am not allowing him to be a leader. I am not going to let go… I’ve already stopped responding to drama caused by these in laws, at the party I had a great time and didn’t give any notice to their antics but now I need to let go of needing to control how he responds to his family… Thanks for the insightful articles, they are very illuminating.

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