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Joint Family:Abusive and hypersensitive wife
2009-02-18
Name: HelpThisHubby I need help. I am married for about 10 years with a kid, 8 years old. I, my wife, and kid stay in the 1st floor of the house built by my father, which is quite spacious. My parents live in the ground floor, and are in their mid- seventies. My wife was initially friendly with them, but in the last 5 years has developed hatred and become fully hypersensitive to anything they say. She has horrible hatred for my mother, and somewhat less hate for my father. I have tried for years to pacify and keep her going without bothering about others remarks, but she is very irrational and refuses to listen. She works for a Govt organization in a junior technical role. I am a faculty in a postgraduate engineering school. My biggest problem is her verbal abusive nature that she very cleverly displays only when my kid is awake and around:- she knows that because of my love for him and concern that he will get mentally spoilt, I will compromise with whatever she says. She is very prone to being physically abusive to me as well. As I am writing this, I have a painful arm from trying to restrain her from an abusive outburst last night. All this when I have otherwise good relations with her parents and brother. They also have acknowledged her short temper and sensitive nature. She has been often been hinting at breakup as well. I have quite often had to return midway from office, unable to concentrate on my work there, because of this or that quarrel the previous night. My parents and I are naturally concerned over the child' s mental well being. She has hardly any wants unsatisfied- we have a lady cook who turns up twice a day, and a maid servant for all cleaning. I have taken her and my kid out on any number of holiday trips in the past, bearing 100 of the expenses.

Can anyone with such experience help me pl?

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2009-05-24
#1
Name: Sanjay
Subject:  I am in the same boat
Mate - I am exactly in the same situation as you. I have been married for 5 years and no kids. My parents also live in US but have their separate place. I send some money to my parents to support them as they are in their late 60' s and moved to US from India few years ago. My wife cannot tolerate my mother no matter what my mother does for her. My mom has told things to my wife in the past when we all lived together, but she doesn' t say anything anymore. The problem is my wife is extremely sensitive and rigid and is not ready to forget the past. She keeps harping on it all the time. She wants me to send my parents back to India which I feel is extremely unfair. I have explained to her so many times that they live separately...whats your problem but she won' t budge. I can' t live with the guilt that I send my parents back to India as they are getting older day by day. My wife wants a separation because she cannot accept the fact that I support my parents. I never wanted to choose between one or the other. My parents are ready to compromise but my rigid wife is not. Do I send my parents back to India or separate from my wife?
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2010-11-02
#2
Name: Kanchan
Subject:  Reply@sanjay
I can understand your problem both the relations are important for you...but it is only in your hands how to tackle this without hurting anyone...and as far as your parents are concerned, they have spent all their life for their children..now its your turn to look after them till they are alive and never ever think of living them alone...this is the very sensitive period of their age..they need you to care them...you be as much gentle and concerning to your wife also as much is possible...u tell her that you understand you mother has misbehaved with her (you will have to talk like this so that she will feel you understand her situation also..) but now they need us...tell her that we can also be in the same situation in the old age imagine what we will do how we will feel if our children ignore us at that time...if she is really sensitive she will understand...!! me too living in a joint family with different set of problems..but i appreciate the way my husband is handelling the situations..he is doing whatever he wants to do for his family but at the same time he knows how to make me emotional fool :)...you will also have to do something like that ..and believe me it works... :))
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2009-06-01
#3
Name: rkpatel
Subject:  Re..I Am In The Same Boat..!!
Dear Sanjay,

I KNOW it will be not only NOT-EASY to LISTEN TO THE ADVICE,but also IT WILL BE EQUALLY HARD TO PUT IT IN PRACTICE.

But MY-ADVICE to you for your-sanity and sanity of your near and dear is that either you SEPARATE YOURSELF FROM YOUR-PARENTS or YOUR-WIFE..!!

Like as we KNOW that to get a HUSBAND a WOMAN has to LEAVE her PARENTS and to get GOD WE-HUMANS HAVE NO-CHOICE BUT TO DIVORCE OURSELF FROM WORLD,called MAYA..!!

Similarly if we wanted WOMAN,then WE WILL HAVE TO LEAVE OUR-PARENTS.

Although IT WOULD BE VERY HARD,BUT YOU WILL HAVE TO CHOOSE BETWEEN EITHER YOUR-PARENTS or YOUR-WIFE-AND-DAUGHTER.

If for some reason you CHOSE to live with your parents,then for GOD-SAKE make sure that your-wife and daughter have atleast security of FOOD,SHELTER and CLOTHINGS and give her ASSURANCE that you will always be there for her and your daughter,if she NEEDED YOUR-HELP.

Although PHYSICALLY WE DO CHANGE,but there is NO-GUARANTEE that OUR-NATURE will CHANGE..!!

Therefore,for GOD-SAKE be NOT-NAIVE and THINK that your wife will CHANGE.

And if your wife or any other-human was reading this reply,then I would tell her/them exactly the same thing.

THERE IS NO-DOUBT THAT WE-HUMANS DO CHANGE..!!

But UNFORTUNATELY NOBODY CAN CHAGE US.

That is,HOW WE KNOW,LEARN,UNDERSTAND, CHANGE etc or WHY WE DON´ T UNDERSTAND, LEARN,KNOW,CHANGE etc is,like GOD,WHOM WE-INDIANS KNOW AS BHAGAVAN PARAMAATMANnot only NOT-KNOWN,but also IT IS UNKNOWABLE..!!

Think about that for a moment..!!

rkpatel,
wn,nz.
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2009-03-08
#4
Name: RN
Subject:  Hi Help this hubby
Hi,
After reading your post, i want 2 ask u whether ur wife is abusive with everyone?does she gets along with people in general?If the answer is yes,thenits time 2 check on your mother.i think she is taking advantage of ur wife' s short temper nature to create a bad picture by taunting your wife.
You should sit with ur mother too and tell her clearly not 2 bother ur wife since your kid' s future and emotional well being is most important.Ask ur mother to be more loving and sympathetic 2wards ur wife.
And if ur wife is abusive in general,then counselling and meditation can help
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2009-03-07
#5
Name: Mel
Subject:  Hi HelpThisHubby
Glad to know that there is some improvement in your relationship. I just want you to know that whatever advice I, or for that matter, most other readers offer, is usually from our own experience. We understand certain aspects because we, as women have gone through the same pain and hurt.

I also hope you will continue to put effort in this direction. It may seem endless sometimes, and at times it may seem as if you are regressing, but in the end it will all be ok.

Thank you for your feedback and for sharing the updates.

All the best.
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2009-02-24
#6
Name: Mel
Subject:  Hi Suni
I agree completely. Even when husbands KNOW that their parents are wrong, they hesitate to say anything as they want to be ' good, dutiful sons' . What I' m surprised is that most Indian men have a concsience, but most parents of married Indian men lack it. They don' t realise that when they give their DIL a hard time, invariably it' s their own son who gets smashed in between.

Nowadays their logic is simple. Why doesn' t the DIL bear everything quietly. Well, my question is, why don' t parents give up their need to be mean and sarcastic with a girl who is from the next generation... if not for her sake, then for the sake of the peace of mind of their OWN FLESH AND BLOOD... their own son... and their own grandchildren.

I have a son... and I promise myself everyday, that even if I feel competitive with his wife for his affection and time, I will try my best not to make an issue of it... for the sake of my little boys happiness.

I sometimes watch my husband get completely sandwiched in between his parents and me. And I feel so bad for him, that I let go of so many issues that bother me. But, apparently the parents who gave birth to him don' t echo the same feeling for him. They refuse to let anything go... even if it is started by them.
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2009-02-23
#7
Name: Mel
Subject:  Hi HelpThisHubby
I don' t think your wife will agree to go to therapy.

I just want to bring a different perspective to your problem, so please bear with me.

I have a feeling that your mum may have hurt your wife immensely on a few occassions. Maybe you won' t disclose that, or maybe you' re not aware of that, or maybe you don' t think it is a big deal.

For most Daughter-in-laws, if their ILs are kind to them (and I mean genuinely kind), then they are genuinely caring for their ILs.
If the ILs are nasty, but the husband is sympathetic with the wife (does not support or justify his parents behaviour), then most DILs will ignore the ILs and be normal with them.
If the ILs are nasty, and the husband supports the ILs, then over a period of time, such a high level of bitterness sets in, that she cannot control her rage.

First she may have experienced hurt, then when you side your parents, she may have felt betrayed, and all that together has contributed to tremendous bitterness and rage... even towards you since she feels that you and your parents are on one side, and she is alone on the other side.

That' s why she tries to subconsciously influence your child, because she feels that he is the last resort, the last one who loves her, and she doesn' t want him, too, to be on your parents side.

My advice is simple, drop everything... Calmly and firmly tell your parents to back off. Tell them that if they are so genuinely concerned with your child, then for his sake, they should keep their comments to themselves. Ask your mother to keep her ' loose comments here and there' to herself and concentrate on taking care of the grandchild, poojas etc.

And sit your wife down... talk to her... tell her you should have understood her pain, and been on her side. Tell her that you love her and know that your parents have hurt her, and will try your best to make sure it doesn' t happen again.

Tell her that you know that they have been wrong, but as a son, and as a younger generation, if she loves you, she would just ignore them, or be normal with them, as that would help keep your conscience clear. (That' s it. Don' t speak on and on about your parents.) Just have this conversation with her. Tell her if they are mean to her, to just stay away from them.

Try this. It will definitely take time, but if she sees that you are on her side, she will surely make an effort to change.

You may not realise it, but just as you think your wife is cunning, a lot of MILs are also cunning. They do not say nasty things in front of their husbands and sons. But, make many snide remarks when they are alone with the DIL, or in front of the grandchild. This is unbearable for any woman.

If you want your marriage to work and you really love your wife and child, then try being a bit more sensitive.
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2010-08-07
#8
Name: Titus Samuel
Subject:  abusive wife
dear all,

i would like to present my case, which would totally contradict what mel has stated here.

i´ ve been married for 8 years. Initially my wife used to talk very nicely to my mother(widow) and sister(single but elder) and my brothers. they used to wait for her to come, coz whenever she is there, there would be happiness around, coz every one in the family loved her more. She was the youngest in OUR family. But none knew the suffering i was subjected to every night after returning home. she would start abusing my family members and would threaten me with suicide attempts. To avoid such abuses and threats, i ensured i do whatever she tells me, however expensive it is. i had to borrow loans from friends and banks.

Furthermore, she was infertile and i took pity on her and took a lot more care. I spent a fortune on her medical expenses with a hope, if she becomes a mother, her abuses would stop.

By God´ s Grace, i was blessed with twin daughters 2 years back. But her attitude remained the same. I forgot to tell that her chief adviser is her mother.

With the childbirth, she brought her parents to my home and they literally taken over its possession and they would dictate terms. I tolerated everything for the sake of my children.

But they, my wife, MIL, FIL, One servant at 24 hour service and 2 other Servants did not provide proper care for my two infants. They would be fed very late and very little. BF at 11 am, Lunch at 3 pm and dinner at 12 midnight. It caused a lot of health issues with my children.

Then, I decided to send them away, all of them, except my wife. This angered them and my wife started abusing my children too.

The Indian Law never supports a man, and she knows that and always threaten me with " JAIL" for Domestic Violence. I cannot open my mouth in protest.

Now, my family knows the entire story, after 8 years and they are shocked. They still advise me patience. And I am.
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2009-03-07
#9
Name: HelpThisHubby
Subject:  Some Improvement
Dear Mel/ Sanjana/ Neeraja/ Suni

Thanks for your time, and sorry for me responding so late. Actually, there has been some improvement in the situation after my last post. The two of us sat together one night and I gave her a patient hearing. Although there was not much really new in what she was saying, she was convinced this time that I was a reasonable man, after I agreed with her that she had been hurt by loose statements my mother had made. I haven´ t however still had success in convincing her about her abusive talking. I hope that will stop someday.

In the meantime, I am really moved by the points in your mail, Mel. They are quite well expressed. I do hope readers like you will be there always for emotional support of people like me in such trying times. May God bless us all.

Thanks again.
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2009-02-23
#10
Name: Suni
Subject:  Ego
Hey Mel ..Nice advice given by you..I am sure lot´ s of family´ s sailing in same problem explained here, including me.Problem with the husband even after understanding everyone´ s feelings, they don´ t want to tell anything to their parents, b´ coz they are concerned about giving feeling to their parents about " son listens to his wife more than for them" . Also lots of ego issues comes to them when talking to wife´ s side.It is easy to bend down for indian men to parents than wife.
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2009-02-20
#11
Name: Sanjana
Subject:  Break
Hi,
I think your' s is serious problem. I wouldn' t think any girl calling all those names for mil and physically abusing husband with out any one mistake. As Neeraja suggested go for marriage counceling. And I would suggest same time live separately , I mean till she comes for a position to understand each other. If she doesn' t agree for any of these you can ask her parents help to convince her for counceling. But do put some effort for solution.
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2009-02-21
#12
Name: Sanjana
Subject:  Correction
I meant live separately from your spouse not parents..Sorry for confusion.May be living alone she might realise importance of you.But same time councelling might also help.Since you are in good relation with her parents, may be you can take their help to resolve this.
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2009-02-20
#13
Name: Neeraja
Subject:  Reply
I am not sure if you are considering counseling or not. It´ s very hard to convince someone for counseling. As people don´ t accept that they have a problem. I strongly suggest you to meet more people. Socializing a great way to relax/divert lot of things. All you have to ensure is you have to meet people sailing similar boats. That should help your problem for sure. Living separate from your parents will surly help for timebeing. I would not suggest that though. I don´ t think that is the solution.
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2009-02-19
#14
Name: Neeraja
Subject:  Reply
I think you need counseling as a couple. You have to meet more people who are going through same things in life. I feel that will help you both and make your wife realize, she is over reacting to things.
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2009-02-19
#15
Name: sanjana
Subject:  Reply
Hi,
May be you should think what is causing her to talk like that??.Is she got hurt by any of your' s mother' s comment?.It is very easy to forgive and let go for you for your parents, but not for her.Did you or your mother comment anything on her family?.Any girl will not take bad comment on her family.I am a women and I went through similar situation like your family.
I would suggest you talk to her tell her if she can' t love or show love to your parents be atleast nutral.And ignore.Show your full support towards her , since your parents are very old, tell her to ignore their comments.I am guessing from what ever you wrote that she is not getting support from you and you support your parents for what ever they do.
If nothing works move out of that house and keep a servent for your parents to takecare of them.Hope this helps.

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2009-02-19
#16
Name: HelpThisHubby
Subject:  Support me
Dear Sanjana

I have tried all that you have suggested in the past. Unfortunately she is utterly rigid and keeps concocting tales about my parents, and when I protest, she begins to quarrel. I see no point how moving out will solve the problem. I lived abroad in the UK for a while in 2002 with her and my kid, then 2 years old. Even though we were thousands of miles away, she played havoc with my life with loud yelling about my parents in our apartment, forcing some physical restraint. She is just like a cobra who sees everyone as a threat even when they are soft to her. I agree, my mother also is prone to some loose statements here and there, but they can surely be just ignored with no harm. These are some of the words my wife has used against my mother, and for which I am silently putting up with severe pain: Jackal, rogue, scoundrel, rakshasi, ... My mother has never ever used even one such word on my wife. Ultimately, me, my parents, and my child are the real victims of her. Pl do keep me going for my child´ s sake. I can´ t find a way out myself.
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