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Religious in law issues
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orin34 posted:
Okay, I am going to start off saying that I DO NOT want to debate religion. If that is your intention, keep it to yourself.

That said, My MIL has been pressuring DH to have our son baptized since before he was born (he is 19months). I personally do not care. I was baptized as a baby, but my family is non practicing catholic. My parents taught us that god was all around us and not only found in a building or institution. DH went through the whole process of being confirmed ect.... but he stopped going after that and is now non practicing as well.
MIL pressured DH and DH got fed up with it and said "we will talk about it in January" (he was putting it off because he was too busy to talk with her about it... and he is STILL to busy). So, since MIL can't discuss it with DH.... she decides to come over and discuss it with me. I guess she talked with the priest at her church and they sounded wishy washy and didn't want to baptize unless they were going to get a "religious commitment" out of us.
I told MIL that I didn't care if he was baptized or not and that I left it up to DH and it is still up to DH. I said that I would be supportive and go to the classes if need be, but I don't think it was necessary. This is where it gets kind of nasty.... She told me that she was taught "children who don't get baptized die and go to limbo which is worse than hell and since you are baptized he will be separated from you forever". Now, I have taken comparative religion and I know that it says that.... but I don't believe that at all.
It irked me to no end that it she would try and scare me into having our son baptized.
I told DH about it just now (a couple days later... it had slipped my mind... if I wasn't on my period I would say I had preggo brain) . . . and he was PISSED that she would say that to me. I have to give the guy props on a united front, he called her to yell at her but she didn't pick up. I actually had to calm him down about it and make it sound like it wasn't a big deal (even though it IS) because he was ready to write her out of our life all together right then and there. He was beyond livid that she would say that to me.
Did I do the wrong thing by "ratting her out" to DH? DH is still super pissed at her. . . I told him about the incident through text, he then called me and had a few choice words for his mother and I felt really bad about ratting her out like that so I tried to blow it off and just tell him "it's not a big deal... she was just trying to scare me.... she just wants to try and nudge us into it... ect"... even though it IS a big deal to me and I am just as mad about it than he is.

*I would also like to note that I suspect DH was going to baptize him because he wanted to make his mom happy. But his mom is non practicing as well (lies to DH's grandmother that she goes to church every week) and only wants it done so that she can 'earn points' with HER mom (DH's grandmother) who is super religious... hence scoring her more points (or $) than her siblings when the grandmother dies.

So........ how would you have handled that? Did I do a bad thing by telling DH about it?
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phoenix31674 responded:
You were right to tell DH about it. And he was right to be PO'd over it.

Baptism should be the personal choice of the parents if you are in a religion that does infant baptism. There are Protestant sects out there that do not believe in infant baptism because the person should be consciously making the commitment to Christ, not just through a proxy.

I am a non-practicing Catholic as well, so I know how serious a commitment this is to the Church. The parent needs to be committed to the religion as well as selecting Godparents who feel the same way.

It's a shame that MIL cannot respect your (plural) wishes. If GMIL's only interest is religious fronts for deciding who gets what (or that's what MIL thinks), I do feel sorry for her in a way for being so petty.

Do what you and DH think is right. Religious commitments should be taken seriously and not just to placate a relative
 
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phoenixsong responded:
I would have told my husband in the same situation. You are the parents, not her, and it is up to you how you raise your son. Maybe you and your husband should sit down and discuss boundaries with your mother-in-law to give everyone some peace.
 
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An_240941 responded:
Well I have a pretty close relationship with both my mom & my MIL, & gauging by your other post, you already have a awkward relationship with your MIL to say the least. Personally I don't think it was wrong for you to tell him. He is your husband so why would you keep anything from him? I think his reaction was appropriate too. He has the right to protect his wife & son's well being. But I also think you could just handle this yourself too. I don't see why you can't just tell her that you & DH discussed it & he is your guys' son & you don't want him baptized. Just tell her you don't believe the same absurd crap that she does. Between this & your last post I think I would seriously have put her in her place by now. My MIL & I didn't always get along. It took time & lots of fights & me taking the kids away from her at one point (for their well being, not for spite). He is yours, PERIOD! She doesn't get a say so, PERIOD! She raised her kids already & has no say so in their lives either at this point, PERIOD! & I'd tell her just that. I'm atheist, so I don't believe in all that to begin with. Don't get me wrong, I respect religion & other peoples choices in the matter....it's just not for me. I'm not raising my kids to believe in religion, but when they are old enough to research different religions themselves & make an informed decision I will support whatever choice they make. At some point they have to choose their own life paths & it isn't up to me....I don't have to like it, but I do have to respect it even if I don't agree. Well same goes for your MIL. She doesn't have to like it or agree with it, but she does have to respect your choices for your son until he is old enough to make his own.
 
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orin34 replied to An_240941's response:
DH was so fed up with her that we did talk about not doing it at all and letting HIM (DS) make the decision when he is old enough. . .
As far as MIL and putting her in her place...... would you believe that I have tried? This is one of the main issues that I have with her: She doesn't listen to a thing I say and does whatever she wants anyway. It started when she found out I was preggo.... She went crazy. I am VERY modest and don't let anyone besides DH or the doctor see any skin other than arms and legs. She insisted on going to my preggo dr exams after I told her flat out "NO". She even tried to weasel the info (time and place) from DH so she could just show up and 'surprise' me. I laid out my birth plan for her (no one except DH, me, and my mom... my mom was a nurse)... I told her again... flat out... I don't want you there. What happens? DH intercepts her on her way through my hospital room door. Yet again, we laid it out for her... "don't come to the hospital to see the baby until DH calls you and tells you its okay!".... I get into my room at 5:30AM with no sleep in two days and she comes walking in at 7AM.. DH did NOT call her.
So......... how do you handle someone that doesn't understand no? I try to deal with her as little as possible and only see her once a month. Don't know what else I can do.....
We gave the hospital her name under the "don't admit" list... but it was fathers day and the nurse shift turnover was CRAZY. Next time I will be making a note to inform every nurse and doctor on the fricken floor that I don't want that woman anywhere near me. There are countless other stories just as bad.... and SIL is not above the behavior either... if you ask me the whole family is nuts (I'm not just saying that... DH agrees that his family is very trying on the nerves)
 
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An_240941 replied to orin34's response:
LOL I'm sorry, but his family sounds like either a comedy act or a soap opera! I read your other post about your sons delivery & her forcing her way into it all.

I'm not as modest as you, & for me I let my MIL in the delivery with my 1st born DD. At 1st I didn't really want to cause back then we weren't as close, but after talking with my husband & finding out he wanted her there I let her in. After all it may be my body, but it is his kid too & the birth was his experience too, so if I wanted my mom it was only fair for me to allow his mom as well. Our problem was everyone from his side & my side was sitting in the waiting room coming in & out of the delivery room all the way until I went into the last phase of labor! So I had some 50-60 people in & out of my 1st delivery! (aunts/uncles/cousins/friends/everyone) By the time I had my epidural I stopped caring. For our 2nd DD's birth NO ONE was allowed. My MIL was pissed, but she got over it.

So how do you deal with someone who doesn't understand no? Um...you could change your #'s or ignore her calls. Not give her any info at all (or anyone else). Maybe distance yourselves from her completely for a while? I don't know, with my MIL the only way she got it was through lots of fights. I dealt with all my issues with her myself(with DH's support of course). I kicked her out of my house, I stopped letting her see my kids (because of how she behaved around them), I changed me #....all kinds of stuff. Eventually she got it. There are repercussions for her actions. I guess you just got to keep trying (or call the show monster in laws! ) Just don't let her come between you & your DH or your DS. Honestly my relationship with my DH has never been better. We moved to another state! Got away from everyone! Now it's just our little family. I wish you luck though, really. What she is doing to you & has said to you is so out of line.

It could be worse. My mom had a son before she had me. He died at 3months old from SIDS(sudden infant death syndrome). My grandma (my mom's mom) ran to the priest (also catholic) horrified that the baby would go to hell because he wasn't baptized & asked if there was something he could do! He told her she was crazy! He was an infant & incapable of sin. This lady, now so concerned about his after life, when she wouldn't even go to my mom's baby shower because the baby was a "bastard" ( born out of wedlock) ! At least you don't have to deal with that....

Anyhow, I hope things get better with your MIL. Do what you want with your DS, don't let her pissing you guys off get you to just give into her....then she ultimately wins...you know?
 
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orin34 replied to An_240941's response:
I guess looking at it from the outside I can see how funny it may seem.... but actually going through it is anything but. With all the stuff MIL has put me through and all the stuff the rest of the in laws have put me through... it's a miracle they see us at all. The birth thing was a big fight and it did get a little heated between DH and I.... so I asked him if he wanted my mother looking over his private parts if he got various doctors appointments for a vasectomy and that put an end to the argument. . . we had my mom in there because she was a nurse (which was a good thing because while the nurse was getting the baby station ready I laughed and my son 'fell out'.... and she was able keep us informed about what the nurses weren't saying... I almost hemorhaged because the placenta had to be forced off my uterus). With our next one it will be just DH and I.... she can stuff it for all I care. And I will be putting off telling them until the last possible moment because I don't want to have to go through the same battles all over again.
I will be focusing a lot of my time and energy this year working (I am a sub teacher in hopes of landing a permanent spot next year) and hopefully I can just say I am exhausted and not have to bother with them (that isn't a stretch, I am VERY exhausted for some reason....I can hardly keep my eyes open after work.).
When I was on the pregnancy boards the stories I would tell about the in laws were a constant source of amusement for the other ladies.
 
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An_240941 replied to orin34's response:
I'm so sorry. I meant no disrespect. I only meant it was comical in the frustrating sense...you know, when it's so bad all you can do is stop & laugh for a minute? Honestly for me it's funny because I have been there with my MIL, even had some similar things occur between her & I. It sounds as though you are just overwhelmingly frustrated & I legitimately feel bad, not that you need any "pity" from me. For me, it was a little bit of give and take...she went to almost all my dr.s apts for both pregnancy's, but when it came down to the um....naked parts, I asked her to leave the room & of course she HAD to because if she didn't the dr. made her (because of privacy laws). That way she got what she wanted & I got my privacy...it made things easier. I let her in the birthing room for the delivery of my 1st born out of love & respect for my husband...for me it was something I was ok with giving in on because of his perspective on it (but I'm not as modest as you, so it's different). Some times the feuds aren't worth it...so on little things I give in (but for my MIL they may not seem so little) & on big issues (like religion) I hold my ground no matter what other people think or say or how they react. I just had to find my middle ground with his family (including his brother who we now don't associate with & his sister). Once I figured out how to compromise in a way that usually satisfied all to some extent things got a little easier. But I have a dramatic family myself, so it's not like I'm the only one who went through some hell. How long have you been married/ together? may I ask?
 
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orin34 replied to An_240941's response:
I wasn't offended in the least. I am aware that it totally sounds like a monster in law episode... like I said, the ladies on the preggo boards got some big time comic relief and some perspective on how their in laws could be worse.
My DH and I have been together since I was 18 (I am 29 now)... so a long time. We got married when I was 24. (lol... sorry, I have a really bad memory for numbers and get them really mixed up so it is easier to remember events in terms of age). . .
From 18-21 I practically lived at his moms house with him, I was always spending the night....she was cool back then to a certain extent. There were certain things I was offended about: for example, she would constantly "cheat" DH out of money in addition to what he helped out with in rent... his sister would go over on the text bill and DH would have to pay for it... insurance is only paid 9 out of 12 months, but she would charge him the insurance money even though there was no bill that month. Things like that, but DH didn't know any different so he didn't really get the injustice of it all... until he really got immersed and taken in by MY family.
When I was 21 she gave DH an ultimatum to move out or give her more $$ so we moved in together. After that we only heard from her if she wanted money (DH still had a cell phone contract with her). but after she found out I was preggo? that is when it started to go insane. We told her when I was 9 weeks along.... now that we know what we know... next time we will be holding off as LONG as possible (I wasn't really showing until I was full term.... so maybe we will call her after the baby is born...lol).
My family isn't perfect either... I have aunts and uncles that drive me crazy, cousins that I can't stand.... but when it comes down to it... we are a straight forward bunch and if you tell someone "NO" they will probably get huffy, but they won't completely ignore you and do what they want.... in my family we do have some sort of respect for one another.
So.... in summary... it was really odd to go from "okay" relationship (while I was over all the time), to non existent (after DH and I moved out). The non existent/minimal faze lasted 7-8 YEARS in which we only talked to her on christmas eve or other larger events (our wedding).... other than that? pretty much nothing except "I want money for the cell bill" calls. It was a lot to handle going from no contact to in your face psycho MIL.
In reflection DH now realizes the immense difference in our upbringing and he really resents his parents for not giving him the childhood he should have had. DH's parents had problems all his young life and they finally got divorced when he was 12. They never did anything (camping ect.), they lived beyond their means and have always had money problems. Since the divorce he has been the "father figure" to his three other younger siblings. One was recently a drug addict, the other one threatened to commit suicide when she broke up with her boyfriend (she was a juvenile delinquent, and currently is screwing up her life elsewhere. She is 21 and acts like she is still 13). So....... DH's family is the picture of disfunctional. It is amazing that he escaped the "curse" and ended up normal. DH is great, he backs me up 100% . He knows how his mom is and it frustrates him as well that she can't understand simple things like "No" or "give us a few days notice". She is a master manipulator and is known to leave messages that make it sound like someone is in the hospital so we will call her back (she will then try and request 'visitation' for that afternoon). The problem with her is that if you do compromise, she will push for more and more and more. So it will cause more frustration in the long run as she starts to haggle with you (DH warned me about this one.....since he had gotten financially screwed from this behavior).
 
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An_240941 replied to orin34's response:
LOL. My MIL use to threaten to kill herself if she didn't get what she wanted! She is so fear driven that she hardly leaves her bed because she is afraid something will happen. She is always freaking out about the way we raise our kids. Like if there is rain & we go play in it she about has a heart attack because the kids might get sick. When she did come over (when we lived in the same state) she would sit on my couch & change my t.v. to the news & zone out into it & some how relate all the fear driven stories to something in our lives. She would tell my kids to go to their rooms because she didn't feel good & that she couldn't play & yelled at them for acting like kids. I kicked her out & told her her only reason to come to my house was to see my kids & if she couldn't play with them then she didn't need to be there. I told her she has t.v. with the news on it at her own house & that she should go & crawl back into her bed so she could be "safe" again. I'm telling you I get it. I have had plenty of off again on again issues with my MIL. Now I live in a different state & don't have as many problems. Mostly we have a good relationship, but when she goes all bipolar its nuts.
 
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orin34 replied to An_240941's response:
I wish my MIL would move to another state. As it is, she used to live 10 minutes away when DS was born and moved to an hour and a half away (thank god)... and now she is talking about moving BACK so she can be close to us again. I am in total fear, when she mentioned that little tidbit of information I totally had a "dear in the headlights" look on my face lol.
What is it about MIL's and using the children as an EXCUSE to come over and bug you? My MIL complains all the time about not seeing DS and when she does come over she perches herself on my couch and tells me all about her life, completely ignoring DS.
Your MIL sounds just as bizaar as mine with her issues.
 
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5ylver replied to orin34's response:
My in-laws are driving me crazy with the same exact thing. DH is non-practicing however if it meant a lot to him to have our kids baptized I would agree to it with no argument. however he hasn't suggested it. His parents on the other hand keep pushing it onto him and I've explained to them, in front of DH, that we would do it if HE made the choice to do so. I told them it was our decision but it's not very important to me, as I'm not very religious. Their response to me was "it doesn't matter if YOU aren't religious" YES IT DOES! We attended DH's niece's baptism a week ago and they continuously said "you guys need to get the girls done now" I don't think they will ever get it! I understand how you feel in this situation lol
 
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An_240941 replied to orin34's response:
She can be...but she has her good moments too. My MIL use to complain about never seeing my kids & then when ever I would ask her to come over to see them or to babysit she would be "busy" or say I was using her! So she didn't see them because she would never come over! So stupid. Yet when her son was home she was always available. When she would call me it was only to ask about her son, because he would never call her or answer her calls because she drives him nuts. I called her on all of it & my husband stepped in & told her she either needed to call me to talk to me or don't call me. He told her to stop disrespecting his wife or he would be done with her. I stopped talk to her for a few months all together & she realized no relationship with me meant none with her son or our kids...now her & I get along just fine, but now she knows her place. Oh my MIL told me she was working on moving to the city we live in...the only reason I didn't freak out is because I know it will never happen. Trust me though, you're not the only one with a psycho MIL, so if we laugh it's because we get it.
 
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orin34 replied to An_240941's response:
LMAO. We have the SAME mother in law!!!!! I stopped using MIL as a babysitter because she would bug me ALL THE TIME to babysit, and when I finally offer to let her....... she is busy, she wants me to drive the hour and a half to her (even though where I am going is an hour north of ME and I would be getting out late), she wants him overnight, she wants this... she wants that.... I told her forget it because she makes to many demands. I use my dad instead now (she was pissy when I told her that. She doesn't like hearing that my parents spend time with him.) She started texting me for the first time since this religious incident this morning... wanting to know my schedule so we can get together. ummmmm... I am a SUBSTITUTE TEACHER, I don't know my schedule sometimes until 5AM that same morning. She said "well just block out some days".... So she wants me to throw away $$$ so she can spend a couple days with DS (I would never have her watch DS while I am at work because she couldn't get here at a reliable time, and DS's daycare needs to have him come in at least once or twice a week to keep his spot).

5ylver: LOL to the "it doesn't matter is YOU aren't religious". Sometimes you really got to wonder what in the world people are thinking when they open their mouth and say something like that. MIL has said something similar to me about the issue when the baptism thing first got brought up. No matter what the argument or issue is it boils down to this: I don't matter even though I am his mother. She made a very telling statement when I first had him in the hospital and I was dead tired and DH asked her to leave. She said "But he's MY grandson". She has said this same thing over and over again at various times over the course of the last two years. I have even heard passing comments about her getting a court order to see DS (lol........ good luck lady... that will only work if DH was deceased). We should totally make a book about the stupid things MIL's do and say
 
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An_240941 replied to orin34's response:
Yea my MIL would want my kids to stay at her house overnight too & I told her if she wants to be with my kids through the night she had to stay at our house for the evening, but she lived in a bad neighborhood and we are from Las Vegas (where she still lives & we were smart enough to get out of). That's so stupid that she would just expect you to not work so she could see the baby. With the economy the way it is we can all use a bit of extra $, so that's like asking you to give up buying milk for your kiddo. How dumb. She seems to think she is so entitled. My MIL is like that. She thinks she shouldn't have to work again the rest of her life & her kids should support her & pay for her to have a car & health insurance & a cell phone. She actually gets mad that her daughter makes her pay rent...her unemployment is running out so I wonder what she is going to do then since she wont work. Oh & she gets mad because her daughter only takes $15 a day off her rent when she babysits! They are her grand-kids, she should be thrilled to watch them not upset about what she gets back...but then again watching them means she has to get up at 8am instead of noon!

5ylver, It so does matter that you aren't religious! I can't believe some people could be so ignorant as to make remarks like that. My MIL use to tell me that..." But I'm their Grandma! They are my Grand-daughters!" I would just tell her they are me kids & I'm their mother & that means a whole lot more that you being their grandma! I brought them into the world! Me & her son. Not her. She didn't make them or birth them, so why she thinks she should have any right over their lives is beyond me & I would tell my MIL that too.

So tonight my MIL & her daughter are fighting & bad, so she is crying on the phone to me about how she wishes she was here & lived with us instead of there with her daughter. I told her it sucked that she didn't have any other options (the only people that would take her in was her daughter & son in law) & I told her if she wanted to move here she would have to go get a job in Vegas, save her $ so she could afford to move her & rent her own place & get her utilities put in her own name (she has bad credit) & find a job out here to support herself or there would be no way she could come here. She said well all that is impossible. Funny how she use to not even want to talk to me or be around unless her son was home & now she wants to move in with me (& my husband is an over the road trucker, so he is only home 2 days a wk). Funny how quick things change. I straight up told her she can never live with us. I told her I couldn't deal with her 24/7 & it wouldn't be healthy for my kids. Sorry to say, but I'm not the nicest person sometimes & I do not candy coat things for anyone.

Anyway ladies wish you all luck with your MIL's. TTYL.


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