Monday, September 26, 2005

Un! Comfortable!

UGH! Had a very uncomfortable night last night with my mother-in-law, her big gay husband, her ex-nun sister, and her sister's slightly dirty-old-mannish husband. In honor of my brother-in-law's birthday. He and Andy's sister are fine. As are Andy's aunt and uncle, forgiving the ogling tendencies of said uncle.

The problem is with the mother-in-law and her husband. Sigh. Such a long story.

The husband is creepy.


Mother-in-law is approaching 60, and he is exactly my age. 36. But, you know, I myself have a bit of a cradle-robbed husband, albeit nothing that extreme. So that's not the problem. It just adds up with other things for a picture of wrong.

He moved out of his mother's house, and into my husband's mom's house. He has accidentally called her "Mom," on more than one occasion. Funny and lame, but also not SO very troubling all by itself.

He's also EXCEEDINGLY socially awkward, to the point that he can't make direct eye contact with anyone, and cannot hold normal conversations. He just has this vibe about him that... makes one nervous. Now Andy's mom has a habit of taking in unwanted, ugly, sad, stray animals, so we could chalk this up to the same sort of tendency. She also works with special ed kids. And I would say he fits that bill, but it would be insulting to special ed kids. Let's just say he seems to need some sort of special attention.

But it gets weirder.

He is the gay. A big gay cowboy to be exact. EVERYONE, including my rather clueless, older parents, can tell he is the gayest. The Village People cowboy outfit, complete with hat, boots, GIANT belt buckles, Western shirts, and high-rise, embarrassingly tight Wranglers, is absurd in the extreme.

Now, I LOVE the gay. I am quite possibly the biggest hag in Indianapolis. I would let any of my gay friends babysit my kids in a heartbeat. Gay is not the problem.

Being DEEPLY in denial about said gaydom, acting all homophobic (offensive!), while simultaneously surfing hardcore gay porn - IS the problem. As is frequenting gay chat rooms (while married to mother-in-law) and asking locals where he can go to "be taken by force." As is fetishizing violent rape by authority figures to the point of ordering used police uniform pants off of the internet.

How do I know this? We've got the hard drive.


Also, Andy's older brother who lives in Manhattan became suspicious after receiving a call from their mom, asking him how much life insurance it was normal to have, and listening to big gay husband (BGH) bitch audibly in the background about how she doesn't have enough! because he wants to be able to completely pay off their brand new house when she dies! and bills! (and big gay coming out party!) And Manhattan brother didn't think it was kosher for someone's spouse to view their death as similar to winning the lottery, and so he sleuthed around and gathered his evidence, and proceeded to write a letter to their mom detailing their concerns about her health (given BGH's trolling for rape advice) and her well-being (life insurance, woman! more life insurance!), and stating that he would not keep company with BGH, and then he signed the letter from all of us: him, his wife, Andy, me, and Andy's sister.

Now who do you suppose was around for the aftermath of the arrival of this letter? Here's a hint. It wasn't Manhattan brother!

Because mother-in-law couldn't bring herself to hate her son and daughter, who did she decide to hate? ME!

She then proceeded to act as if nothing at all had happened, and dragged BGH to all family get togethers and dinners, even though we knew all about him, and HE knew we knew all about him. She forced him on us, and, presumably, us on him. And he sat there every time like a giant, silent bump on a log, unacknowledged, because even SHE doesn't talk to him, he's so weird.

So this is all simmering below the surface when she decides to use the excuse of her sister's visit to call us up and ask if Simon can spend the night. Um, NO! Now, Andy thinks he told her, during the one tense conversation they had upon the receipt of the letter, that our children would not be spending the night at their house, as long as BGH was there. If he DID, she knew the answer would be no, and it was unfair to put us in that position. If he DIDN'T (which is entirely possible given the family's strict policy of not speaking about anything), she still knew how we would feel about it, and what our answer would be, as evidenced by the fact that she has NEVER asked before if Simon could spend the night. So she was still putting us in an awkward position.

And we can't trust her. (1) She is totally in denial about BGH. (2) She appears to feel slightly guilty for his having married someone menopausal, and never being able to have kids of his own, and so she seems to have decided that she'll encourage him to become involved with and affectionate with ours. Um... no. Like, she'll take the baby from me, and then suddenly remember she has to do something, and plunk the baby down in his lap. Um... NO!! (3) She hates me, and totally disdains and disrespects my super-strict, uppity, old fuddy-duddy "Rules" such as feeding the children dinner and putting them to bed at bedtime. I'm mean! (4) She blames me for what she sees as a "change" in her son, because the old Andy (depressed, stoner hippy guy) would've never condoned rules such as feeding kids fruits and vegetables instead of Twizzlers for dinner! (5) She once took Simon for an evening and fed him Twizzlers and popcorn instead of dinner, which, honestly, I could've forgiven, but she LIED to me about it when I asked her if he had eaten. And I knew it! She freaking lied like an errant teenager. And when we busted her for her lie, she had the nerve to get mad at us!

I'm sorry, but HIS qualities, combined with HERS = recipe for NO CHILDREN SPENDING THE NIGHT! I could just see her jumping up into her huge bed next to BGH and telling Simon to jump on up right between them for a cuddle! AAAAAH! *shiver*

But she calls Andy and asks him, and he says he'll have to check.

And she calls me, and I say I'll have to check.

And, adhering to the traditional policy of not talking about things, and thus avoiding having to open the giant can of explaining-why worms, we never called her back.

We made sure we were out of the house as much as possible this weekend, in fact.

This was really hard for me, as in MY family, we yell and scream and get all up in each others' business, but at least we know where we all stand, for goodness' sake!

So my stomach was in knots on the way to mother-in-law's house for the birthday dinner. I just knew the hate and blame would be directed at me, as usual, and enacted in passive aggressive ways like refusing to make eye contact and only speaking to the kids, or through the kids instead of to me. And I was right.

Un! Comfortable!

There were certainly a couple of snotty comments sprinkled throughout the evening, but the worst part was just the underlying tension. We felt it from the aunt and uncle too, because I'm sure she told them we wouldn't let Simon spend the night with her because we don't trust her because of the Twizzlers dinner lie (unfair!) and we're just mean.

Andy said he told his mom merely, "Sorry," when she pulled him aside and bitched at him at one point. He offered no further explanation. Because that might end up in a giant blow-up that would result in us not seeing her anymore, because I KNOW she would pick BGH over us. And that would be sad, not for me, but for the kids, because they love her, and she loves them, and she's a pretty fun grandma (Hey - Twizzlers for dinner), in spite of the blind spot in the shape of a huge, lurking, gee-he-seemed-like-such-a-nice-quiet-person-I-can't-believe-he-had-15-young-boys-buried-in-the-cellar BGH.

So you know what? She can go ahead and hate and blame me all she wants because I know I'm doing the right thing.

It's bad enough I have his hulking frame cluttering up my wedding pictures, but I will not have his hulking frame looming over my children, with me not there to protect them.

You don't even get ONE chance to mess with my kids. Sorry.

3 Comments:

Blogger yucaree said...

you have a really creepy father-in-law ... although i can imagine you don't want to call him your father-in-law!

you're doing the right thing by not allowing simon to spend the night at your mother-in-law's. he is your child and you have every right to be concerned about him being around creepy BGH man.

and, as unfortunate as it is, there's probably very little you can do to get your mother-in-law to like you. it seems she has other fish to fry that she hasn't started frying (what with her denial about her husband and the non-communication with her own kids).

you're definitely being the bigger person by allowing your kids to see their grandmother (under strict supervision, i imagine) and love her without getting them involved with all the creepiness. that's what good moms do! [hint, hint to andy's mom!]

10:26 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

I love a woman who tells a good story!
Wow... I thought I had family problems!! Well, I do actually, but, wow.
Good for you, for being a Good Mother Bear, and doin' what ya gotta do.
My mother may have been a dysfunctional agoraphobic manic-depressive anxiety-ridden 3X suicide attempter semi-alcoholic and pill popper, BUT - the ONE thing I KNEW I could count on growing up was that she would defend me with her life. NOBODY messes with the cub!! Well, mama bear can, but.. that's another story.

And - to a previous post - Heavens to Mergatroid?! Ok, that has to be a Hoosier thang.
My RI-born hubby gives himself quite a chuckle over some of my "sayings", that to me are as natural as saying "the", and I never gave them a second thought.
Heavens to Betsy is also popular.

5:41 AM  
Anonymous Austin said...

Quite worthwhile information, thanks so much for the post.
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4:27 AM  

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