(recently joined)
09/27/10 06:29 PM
Invasive Sister-in-Law

My ex's sister and he are exceptionally close, so much so that she hindered some reconciliation efforts on my part once we were separated, because I initiated proceedings. My daughter,20, who is very much like her father in temperament, has sided with him, and is very difficult to get along with, though I always take the high road and do not speak poorly of him or his sister, to her. I have tried very hard since the sep/divorce to have a better relationship with her, but it has not always been successful. My husband made out financially way better than I did in the divorce. He makes at least four times my salary and indulges her and her brother (though her brother and I have a much better, open, relationship). The big problem I have is my ex-sister-in-law. She has attempted to step into the role of me by buying my daughter very expensive gifts, showing up at all of her collegiate events (even those traditionally reserved for parents), and even buying her a membership to an auto club, something a parent should do. I can afford some things, but don't overly indulge her. I am not blaming my daughter, but my ex-sister-in-law is making it more difficult to maintain my composure at these events (which are often as she is involved in a college sport). My daughter shuts me out of any "serious" conversation; she only contacts me when she wants something. I want to confront the sister-in-law, but don't want to come off as "hysterical" or "needy", two words that my emotionally abusive ex always accused me of, and that I know (as do most who know me), is not true. I could use some tactics to handle her and my daughter. Talking to the ex does nothing, as he relishes the fact that my daughter doesn't talk to me...he feels it's payback. He does nothing to foster a good relationship between my daughter and me.

(Carpal \'Tunnel)
09/27/10 07:50 PM
Re: Invasive Sister-in-Law

Don't think the issue is with your ex SIL -- the true issue is with your daughter.

(Carpal \'Tunnel)
09/28/10 01:21 AM
Re: Invasive Sister-in-Law

Nothing you have mentioned sounds to me like she is really overstepping (like planning the babyshower if your dd was pregnant or going wedding dress shopping with her). It sounds more like you are super sensitive.....which I can understand given the poor relationship you currently have with your dd.

I would work on trying to get closer with your dd. I think if you talk to your ex s-i-l or talk to your dd about it it will blow up on you and make your relationship even worse.

09/29/10 01:13 PM
Re: Invasive Sister-in-Law

I don't think the things your sister-in-law has done for your daughter are over the top or inappropriate, but I do understand how you feel. My ex-SIL used to buy my children expensive gifts for x-mas and birthdays, and I would feel "upstaged" by her. But then I realized if she didn't have any children of her own, and if she has the money to do it then who was I to begrude her that joy? My children utimately benefited by getting the things I couldn't afford to get them myself.

I think the real issue is the relationship with your daughter. I would talk to your daughter and tell her that you feel she is shunning you or favoring her aunt over you. Maybe she has some resentment from the divorce or something else is bothering her. But you won't know until you ask your daughter why she is treating you the way she is.

10/02/10 02:53 PM
Re: Invasive Sister-in-Law

"maintain my composure"

what does that mean? Are you acting out in public because of your ex sister in law? The best thing for you to do is show your daughter that you love her and that you can remain calm and dignified at ALL times. So your daughter is being spoiled. This isnt your doing and you have no control over it. The way you behave will have more of an impression than anything else. If your daughter then chooses to behave badly or shun you than it is out of your hands and frankly doesnt say much for you daughter. At least however - you can go to bed at night knowing you took the high road.

(recently joined)
10/06/10 09:11 PM
Re: Invasive Sister-in-Law

What I mean by "maintaining my composure" is that I have been, but find myself bursting into tears as soon as I am alone...and I'm afraid I'm going to betray my feelings at some point. It should be noted that my sister-in-law has two adult children who she barely speaks to or sees. Additionally, she has stepped between (almost literally) my ex and me while we were still separated, perhaps to "protect" her brother in some misguided way. As far as I'm concerned, our divorce was OUR business, not hers. Against my wishes, he allowed her to be with us when I wanted to be alone on long trips to see our daughter at college games, in an effort to have time to talk things out with him. I resent her for these reasons, and also her presence at ALL of my daughter's collegiate events. It should also be noted that she and my daughter were not particularly close when I was married to her brother. I have always been there for my daughter. I feel sidelined by them...just as I always had during my marriage. The three of them have very similar personalities: stubborn, passive-aggressive. I can divorce my husband and his sister, but I love my daughter and want to be close to her. I just need to know if/how I should confront my ex-sister-in-law for what I feel is overstepping her boundaries, or, as you have said, continue to take the high road and hope my daughter sees it for what it is. I suppose time will be on my side...

(Carpal \'Tunnel)
10/07/10 09:54 AM
Re: Invasive Sister-in-Law

Someone is inviting her to those events. If it's not your dtr, it's your ex. Maybe that's his passive agressive way of dealing with you.

The four of us who have responded to your posts have all said you seem to be misguided in blaming your s-i-l for these issues and confronting her would likely be a HUGE mistake.

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