Ask Amy: Exclusion brings out the worst in in-laws
Dear Amy: When our son and his wife announced their pregnancy (our first grandchild) it was at an event held at her folks’ house. They announced that her mother was going to be a grandmother for a fourth time, completely leaving us out and never mentioning us, even though we were there.
Later, we had a talk with them. We told them that we were upset about how the announcement was made, but we understood that they didn't mean to hurt us.
We asked them to please keep in mind that their child will have two sets of grandparents.
They seemed genuinely stunned and were very sorry. We forgave them, moved on, and never mentioned the episode to anyone.
Her mother became more distant and cold toward us. It seems that our daughter-in-law related this episode to her mother.
A few months later, when the kids announced the baby's name, it was again a showcase only on her parents. We were not acknowledged.
I must have looked hurt. Her parents then exploded at us, threatening violence and calling us narcissistic.
They said very mean and nasty things, and mocked me for being hurt.
She told me that I would have “Hell to pay” if I ever corrected her daughter again. This played out in front of other people, who were just as stunned as my husband and I were.
Now they completely ignore us. We are no longer invited to family gatherings, changing the whole dynamic of our two families.