How do you deal with an ungrateful in-law???

@dfinster (3535)
United States
March 26, 2007 2:26pm CST
I know this may sound like I'm being a little harsh, but I can't put up with this for much longer. My husband comes from a huge family. He's got 12 brothers and sister and I have 21 nieces and nephews on that side. My daughter likes to play with her 2 cousins who live right down the road from us. I love kids and having them around. I'm like a big kid myself a lot of times. I don't mind at all when my bil's youngest comes to play with my daughter. But the last few months both of his daughters have been here almost every weekend, all weekend. He's divorced and only has them on weekends so I was a little shocked when this started happening. He has the girls call my daughter and ask if they can come and play. I almost always say yes if we don't have other plans. But now I think he's crossing the line with me. He doesn't bothe to drive them over anymore, my husband or I have to o get them and take them home. He also started just leaving them here for the whole weekend without even bothering to let us know that was going to be the case. He's only got a cell phone and conveniently forgets to take it with him when he leaves the house so we can't contact him. Now we've been feeding them all their meals and having to put our own things off just to take care of his kids because he takes off to party. The final straw was this weekend when he pulled the aking off thing and when we got a hold of him on Sunday he asked when we were bring them back home like he was annoyed they were here. He never thans us for anything we do for them and doesn't bother to consider what plans my family might have for the weekend. How do I deal with him? I can't tell the girls that they can't come down here because I feel bad for them and know if they don't come he will leave them alone to fend for themselves. They're only 8 and 10.
9 people like this
19 responses
• United States
26 Mar 07
It is time to get serious. Sit him down and have a nice long chat with him explaining how you feel. People that take advantage of others rely on the fact that these people are polite. Time to shed the politeness and tell him how it is. You love taking the girls but you are not taking the the entire weekend. Explain that he needs to spend time with them. Lay down the rules, he will drive them over, he will pick them up and they will have play dates that last no more than four hours. If he is actually in need of a babysitter he can ask you first and you will consider keeping them longer. Add that you will be checking in from time to time and do not expect to ever find these childen alone. Good luck to you and stay strong.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
26 Mar 07
Thanks for the ideas. I'm sorry to say though we've already talked to him. That's kinda why I'm in such a bind about this.
1 person likes this
• United States
28 Mar 07
Sorry I did not realize you had spoken with him. I guess if telling it the way it works does not change his opinions then you and your hubby will have to be even more stern. Refuse taking them in without a scheduled time for pick up. Put your foot down. I know you don't want the girls to suffer for their father but their father has to learn when things are wrong and the girls will forgive you for it and life will get better for all of you. Best wishes
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
29 Mar 07
Yes you guys I will be putting my foot down in a big way starting the next weekend he has them. Thanks.
@dd00571 (53)
• China
27 Mar 07
year,i heat men like this.but if your husband are just someone like this,what will you do? my boyfriend is someone like this i nearly can't bear for so many time. but what should i do? when i leave he,i would miss he.... now it's four year! i really hope i will have a husband who love me and give me strong impaction. maybe my words aren't directly empress my thought,but,i really love speak here.because i can say what i couldn't say in other side
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
Thanks for your comments.
• China
27 Mar 07
hoho
1 person likes this
@lucy02 (5017)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I would just tell him you have other plans and can't take care of his children and if he leaves them alone you will call the ex wife or child protective services. This jerk needs a wake up call. The whole purpose of the weekend visits are so they can spend time with him. If he isn't going to be there then they should stay with their mother.
1 person likes this
@lucy02 (5017)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I just saw your response that Mom is the same way. I think I would call CPS.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I'm afraid to do that because of the reprecussions on my own family especially my daughter.
• Canada
27 Mar 07
I think it's time for you to have a chat with his ex wife if he won't listen to you guys. Maybe she can talk sense into him. I'm sure she'd be horrified to know that he doesn't even spend time with his girls when he has them at weekends. It's terrible that the girls are being told to call you guys and ask if they can come and play. What kind of father WOULDN'T want to spend time with his kids when he only has them 2 days a week? You might HAVE to say no if he continues to have them call you. It might just do him good to hear the word no for once. You guys have a family too, and you need some time to do the things YOU want to do without worrying about the girls. You can't be there for them 100% of the time as much as you might want to be. Talk to their mother, see what she has to say. She might be a little more sensible than her ex husband is. I wish you luck.
• Canada
27 Mar 07
Okay I just now seen what you said about their mother so scratch that part lol. Is there maybe anyone else in the family that might be able to talk sense into him, like another brother, or maybe even his parents? If he's not willing to listen I'm not sure what else you can do. It seems no matter what, the girls are going to get hurt because the situation has gone more than far enough already. Good Luck!
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
Thanks for the effort in your suggestions. I appreciate it!
• United States
27 Mar 07
Perhaps your husband should sit down and have a talk with his brother. Or both of you should. Don't come off to harsh or angry to start with as that just tends to back the accused into a corner. Explain to him how it is you feel and voice your concerns. Tell him that you want to help him out but that you can't do it every weekend. Try and make him understand that you have to make time for your own immediate family on the weekends. Make sure and explain to him that you love spending time with your nieces and that it's a pleasure for them to come over, but that you just can't manage it every weekend. Offer for him to come over and hang out you and your husband while the kids play one weekend that you don't have anything planned. That way maybe you can include him in the scenario? Hopefully you get the situation worked out. And you most certainly did not come off sounding too harsh. How you feel is completely understandable.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
Thanks for the suggestions but like I said before we've done this and it's like talking to a wall.
• United States
27 Mar 07
Just out of curiosity, is there anyone in your husbands family that your brother in law listens to that would be willing to try instead? Talking to him that is? Because if he isn't going to listen to you, then maybe if there is someone else...I just wish there was so thing else I could think of because that is a sticky situation to be in.
• United States
27 Mar 07
dfinster, I understand you feelings not wanting to say no to the kids but they are not the problem, the father is. You and your husband need to talk with him to straighten things out. From what I hear, it seems like he is taking advantage of you because you never say no or let him know when you and you family have plans. Just explain to him how you feel about the situation and more than likely he will come to his senses.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
We.ve talked to him already about this and my conclusion is that he doesn't have any good sense.
@Marie2473 (8517)
• Sweden
27 Mar 07
Maybe it is time to involve the mother as well - I am sure that she would do something about it. And also try to talk with him on a regular weekday when the kids are not around and explain how you feel. The poor thing is that he probabky doesn´t even realise how preasious this time is and that he should be glad that he has 2 kids who wanna go see him. If he doesn´t change, their minds probably will!
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
He just doesn't care about his time with them even though he knows it's important. Thanks fr your comments.
@phon4u (2217)
• Laos
27 Mar 07
The bigger family will have the bigger problem if we don't talk firmly and make the good rule. My parents used to live with my grandparents on my father side with my dad's brothers and sister. My mum had much more responsibilities than the other ones, she was the first daughter-in-law. She couldn't help my grand mother. I think you should speak to him directly if he is selfish. Kids want to play he should understand and take care not to let you do all for his job.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I agree with you, bigger family bigger problems.
@cdv102 (132)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I think you really need to put your foot down with him. The whole point of them coming to spend the weekends with him is to spend time with their father, not you guys. This behavior is probably part of the reason why the divorce came about in the first place. It's high time for him to take responsibility for his own kids. If nothing changes, tell him you'll just have a chat with his ex-wife then. I'm sure she would be interested in knowing that her kids are being pawned off on someone else so he can go party. It might make her rethink the custody agreement. I hate having to put the kids in the middle of this, but it seems they already are. Even though they like spending time with their cousins, they should be spending time with their father. Too bad it doesn't even seem like he wants to. At the very least he should be dropping them off and picking them up from your house. You're already doing him a favor by watching them, why should you have to spend all your gas too? Sorry, I just hate it when family members take advantage this way. Also, since this is your husband's brother, he should be the one to have a serious talk with him, man to man.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
Hubby has talked to him.
@whyaskq (7531)
• Singapore
27 Mar 07
Perhaps he has some problems himself and need some time to 'cool' off? I guess he still cares and love the girls except that he may be comforted by the fact that you are helping him look after the kids. I would ask the kids to talk to their father. Unless the father does not want the kids anymore, he is bound to listen to the kids and when he 'soften', he is more open to suggestions from other family members. This is just my opinion, could be a bit harsh or idealistic, but I guess when all fails, it is best to tackle on the emotions.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I think the only problem he has is always putting his needs before his girls.
@seamonkey (1981)
• Ireland
27 Mar 07
I would be so resentful of that. Your brother in law is being rude not only to your husband, you, your family life, and your personal time, but also awful to his daughters. It sounds like it is really as extreme as it can get. Do you think he would really leave them to fend for themselves? It doesn't seem as though he wants his visitation time, so is he only taking them so their mother can have a break? If it's not the case, maybe she would rather he not take them at all. I would think the girls would be mentioning what they do on the weekends to her. Is she not concerned? I think as much as you don't want to, you might have to start telling him no or involve other family members. It isn't fair on your own family, and he is being very irresponsible. I guess when they grow up and they don't want to spend time with him, he will pay for it then.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I know for a fact he lets them alone a lot because Dana, the oldest has called me asking me to take her to the store to get hotdogs because there's nothing else she knew how to cook for supper.
@SageMother (2277)
• United States
27 Mar 07
If I was in our shoes, I would call the girls' Mother to let her know that they are spending their visitation time with you and NOT withtheir dad as the court has ordered. Then, ask her to come pick them up. This needn't be your battle and you don't need to be involved in a comtempt of court situation. Every time he lets let's them spen most ot their time with you, he is in contempt. the visitation order is not for extended visits with their cousins and other family members. It is for them to spend time with their dad. I know it has to be rough on you trying to feed the bunch of the mon a regular basis, and I know that you want to keep peace., but this is more than an inconvenience, it is a legal matter.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
The mom is the same way and puts them behind the needs of her numerous boyfriends. That's why I don't have the heart to say no to the girls.
@jennybianca (12913)
• Australia
27 Mar 07
Sadly, I think your brother in law is using you. On the one hand it is good that your daughter loves playing with her cousins, and that they are so readily available. But these girls need to see their father a lot more. For him to be sending them to your place, without asking you first, or thanking you after. To not give any food towards their meals, and to stay away for so long. You and your husband will have to "bite the bullet" and speak to him. Tell him it is no longer acceptable that you care for his children all weekend, every weekend. Maybe you can suggest that occasionally, you will invite the children top come and play. You will need to stop this now, or it will worsen.
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
A lot of his family does the same thing. Unfortunately by the time we did talk to him I think it was too late.
@vanities (11410)
• Davao, Philippines
27 Mar 07
of course you cant tell that to your children,,however i admire you for helping those kids i mean the children of your in-laws...but just be patient and be calm always about this situation..remember the one your helping is the kids not the in-laws..helping them although by doing so you think that your in-laws are taking an advantage to it..but never mind its the welfare of the children should come first...just ignore him...
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
Ignoring him is the only way I can deal with his ignorance about this. Thanks for you comments.
@harwoodkp (285)
• United States
27 Mar 07
every family has one of those. that is why I am always thankful for something someone does for me. I would just confront that person. If you get kicked out of the family, so what. YOur immediate family comes first.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
If I really pushed this I would probably be pushed out of the family. Trust me. But that would affect my husband AND my 8 year old which I don't want to do to her. That's why this sucks.
@cutepenguin (6448)
• Canada
27 Mar 07
This situation sounds like there is no good way to get out of it, to be honest. These poor girls - it doesn't seem like either parent really wants to put their daughters first. Why not try a small compromise - tell him he has to drop them off. Or tell him in advance that he will need to get a sitter because your family will be busy on Saturday. I don't really know what you can do without hurting the kids.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
It makes me mad when people treat their kids like this. I don't want to do anything that would hurt them.
@mtdewgurl74 (18118)
• United States
27 Mar 07
That is sad. He has you pegged to he knows you love them girls and that you have a big heart and what that man needs is a dose of reality that and a good swift kick in the behind and maybe a knock on his noggin to bring some sense into it. He is ruining a good thing too. He seriously needs to be taught a lesson I would also contact his ex and tell her whats going on and that he needs to lose his parental rights and visits since he is neglecting them. maybe if he loses his rights for awhile then he might straighten up a little. Or you can start asking him to help provide for the girls tell him for the services rendered you want to be paid money. And babysitters aren't cheap either. You need to explain to the girls that yo love them and don't want to hurt them but the next time daddy wants them to call they should say no and make him seal with them and spend time with them that is what these weekends are for. And also if he leaves them alone and them under 12 years of age that is against the law isn't it. maybe they should call the police and tell them that there dad left them there alone to fend for themselves while he is off at parties. He would be under some serious heat and may lose custody o them for it. and get charges pressed against him...love hurts but so does always being tooken for granted because you are a loving big hearted nice person..
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I agree with everything you've said, but I've tried all the talking and so has my SIL who takes them also.
• United States
27 Mar 07
First of all, holy cow, I thought my husband was from a large family with 10 brothers and sisters. I think you have been more than fair and it is time for a big ole sit down and let it out with the adults in the situation including your husband. It is great to be kind and considerate of family, but not when it is not appreciated. I wish you well and I say again....HOLY COW !!
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I said that over and over when I first came into the family. We both grew up in he same really small town and I knew his family was big but like you said.....anyhow, we've both tried to talk it just doesn't seem to work.
@winterose (39897)
• Canada
26 Mar 07
You have to deal with him very sternly, tell him that he is the father and must take care of those children not you. YOu don't mind having them over once in a while but they are not your children they are his. If he wants to go out all weekend he needs to get a proper babysitter and not live the children alone or you will report him. It doesn't sound nice but if he is that irresponsible he has to be told.
1 person likes this
@dfinster (3535)
• United States
26 Mar 07
I've talked to him about it and was very straightforward but he just blew it off. That's what really bothers me about him, he KNOWS that what he's doing is crappy but just doesn't care I guess.