8 Ways You Don't Realize Your Mother-In-Law Is Lowkey Shaming The Sh*t Outta You

By
Share
Ad failed to load

To be honest, my relationships with my mothers-in-law haven't always been the greatest. Yes, I mean mothers-in-law plural. I have been married twice and have had to navigate relationships with two sets of in-laws. It wasn't easy, but it was manageable. Well, before I had kids. I think there's something about having grandchildren that makes most mothers-in-law say the most passive aggressive, rude, and judgmental things. The worst are the things that sound nice, but really aren't. You know, like the times you don't realize your mother-in-law is lowkey shaming you. The sh*t outta you, in fact.

Sometimes I really do think our mothers-in-law mean well. After all, they want what's best for their children and their grandchildren. Unfortunately, sometimes what they think is best and what you know is best are two completely different things. They make comments about how long your mother-in-law breastfed (so much longer than you did), how she didn't have to get an epidural (so why did you need one, huh?), how young your spouse was when she expertly potty trained them, or how she thinks that you really ought to post more pictures of her grandkids on social media. Yeah, they aren't really nice.

By far, my least favorite versions of mother-in-law comments are what I call "mompliments" — underhanded compliments which aren't meant to actually be complimentary. Like, "I like this new haircut so much more than your last one." So, you hated my last haircut, then? Gee, thanks. And then there's the "You are so brave to wear that!" Umm, no thanks. What you really mean when you say these things is that you can't manage to think of something nice to say to me. So, you know, maybe don't say anything at all?

Ad failed to load

So, listen up mothers-in-law the world over, and let me give you some unsolicited parenting advice for a change: if you want to have a good relationship with your child, don't give their spouse advice unless you're asked. It totally won't end well, and it will most likely feel like low-key shaming:

Ad failed to load

When She Is Passive Aggressive

Giphy

Mothers-in-law are the queens of passive aggressive comments and gestures. You probably know what I mean, too. The comments that imply their disapproval, but don't require them to actually come out and say that they disapprove, are the comment I'm sure you've heard more than a few times. Things like "Oh, you meant to dress the baby that way?" or, "Oh, you're not actually wearing that outfit, are you?" and, "That is an interesting choice." Or the time when my former mother-in-law (who was a hoarder, ironically) purchased me an organizer for my car so I could "keep it cleaner." Then, when you tell your spouse about it, he replies, "Well, I'm sure she meant well."

No. She didn't.

When She Tells You About When Your Spouse Was A Baby

Giphy

I honestly don't want to hear about your experience growing, birthing, breastfeeding, or raising babies. It's a trap. I am so not going to do things the way you did, and that's OK. It doesn't mean either of us are wrong, it just means that we have different ways of doing things.

When She Won't Let You Cook For Her

I am an awesome cook, my friends, and people love my cooking. Except, it seems, my former mother-in-law. My family always had to go out to eat when she came to visit, which is not really fun once you have kids, and especially not fun when your mother-in-law complains about the restaurant, food, and how your kids behave in public.

Ad failed to load

When She Makes Comments About Your House

Giphy

Yeah, my house is "lived in" and we have different styles, taste, and priorities. Your comments about my home are not welcome, especially when they are intended to make me feel bad. Not cool.

(I'm still waiting for her to pay for a maid, by the way.)

When She Doesn't Come For A Visit, Because She Doesn't Want To "Be A Burden"

When we invited my parents and in-laws for Thanksgiving, my mother-in-law decided not to come. She claimed that she didn't want to be a burden, which she wouldn't have been, but that conveniently turned her into the victim when people asked her why she wasn't there. Ugh.

When She Underhandedly Compliments You

Giphy

Mothers-in-law have a "special way" of commenting about your home, outfit, or choices. For example: when your mother-in-law says "your house looks so 'lived-in and quaint,'" she really means you're a terrible housekeeper. When she says your dress is a "bold choice," it means she doesn't like it and definitely wouldn't be caught dead wearing it in public. And when she says that you are assertive, she really means she thinks you're a "b*tch.

I don't know about you, but I would just prefer my mother-in-law being straight-up honest with me.

Ad failed to load

When She Facebook Stalks You

My mother-in-law constantly reminds me that I need to post pictures of her grandkids on Facebook at least once a day. If I skip a day or two, I will get a message from her asking what's up, or worse, my husband will get a message from her asking if I have blocked her. Ugh.

She Gives You Unsolicited Parenting Advice

Giphy

I hate unsolicited parenting advice from anyone, but I especially hate it when it comes from my mother-in-law. It always comes across as lowkey shaming or judgment. She got to be a mom already. And she did a great job, too, because her son is pretty awesome. I mean, that's why I married him. Now, though? Now I'm the parent, and if I want advice I will ask for it.

Watch Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:

Check out the entire Romper's Doula Diaries series and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

21 Moms Share The Most Surprising Part About Having A C-Section

Honestly, I don't think we, as a culture, talk about C-sections nearly enough, especially considering so many mothers experience them. And because of a number of factors, the little we do talk about it always seems to be a familiar narrative: "It's n…
By Jamie Kenney

13 Yummy Instant Pot Recipes To Make Under 30 Minutes

A Instant Pot seems to be the must-have appliance in every kitchen these days. If you are anything like me and never knew the beauty of a Instant Pot, you are about to have your life changed. Basically, you put some ingredients into a pot, set the te…
By Kristin Manna

9 Things The First Six Months Of Motherhood Will Teach You About Your Baby

Personally, the first six months of motherhood was a mixed bag. I learned some harsh lessons about myself that made taking care of my baby seem overwhelming. For example, I was clueless, and no amount of research could help me feel like anything but …
By Steph Montgomery

These Photos Of North West Then & Now Will Take You On A Sweet Trip Down Memory Lane

When Kim Kardashian welcomed her first daughter, North West, with her husband, Kanye West, in 2013, her whole life was changed. The social media and reality TV star became a mom for the first time and her Instagram presence took a very adorable turn.…
By Casey Suglia

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

This Is What It Means If Your Pregnancy Test Changes Overnight

The time between when a woman suspects she might be pregnant and when it is confirmed for sure is the longest of her life. Regardless of whether you are hoping for a positive or a negative result, the odds are good that you are sweating bullets when …
By Shannon Evans

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

This Woman Thought She Had An Eyelash Stuck In Her Eye. Then It Moved.

I'm not a person who is easily icked out. As a kid, I collected bugs and thought I was going to be an entomologist and asked Santa Claus for ant farms and nets to catch bees. I'm still super curious about anything that flies and crawls, which might s…
By Karen Fratti

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

8 "Mistakes" I'm Glad I Made During My First Pregnancy

As an adult, I've learned you never really stop hating being told what to do. When I was pregnant I was getting instructions at every turn, from doctors, relatives, and complete strangers on the subway. I would nod and smile but then go about making …
By Liza Wyles

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack