I don't want to get married because I can't stand my future mother-in-law

By Ngan   February 21, 2023 | 04:00 pm PT
My future mother-in-law leads an extremely frugal life. She turns all the lights off every time she passes by a room, even when someone else is still in the room.

She washes clothes by hand instead of using a readily available washing machine. She refuses to pump water in the evening. She still wears clothes she bought decades ago. She only buys groceries at mid-noon, when it’s extremely hot, because they are cheaper then.

She constantly reheats food so it could still be eaten for days. She mops the floor for hours even though the house is very small. She dilutes dishwashing liquid with water. She refuses to change the dirty and torn dishwashing cloth.

She never cooks more than two dishes per meal because she doesn’t want to dirty the kitchen. Her kitchen looks extremely new, like it hasn’t been used in 10 years.

The house is always spotless whenever I visit my boyfriend. It gets very hot here during the summer, but we can only choose between using the air-conditioner or the fan, we are not allowed to use both at the same time. She refuses to discard plastic bags and keeps them all around the place.

Despite living so frugally, my future mother-in-law is very religious. She is willing to buy incense that costs over VND1 million ($43), and her house always reeks of incense.

Whenever I asked my boyfriend’s mother anything, she says: "Have you ever done anything around the house? Watch and learn from me. You’ll have to do everything when you come to live in this house."

And she always shouts, which makes it extremely unbearable to listen to what she’s saying.

My boyfriend is an only child. He doesn’t agree with his mother’s lifestyle and abhors her personality, so they’re always at odds with each other. My boyfriend and I get along well with each other, and we have set our wedding date.

But after his mother revealed her true self, I’m now having second thoughts about the marriage. I told my boyfriend that I absolutely refuse to live with his mother, and I’m fine with not getting married. He reassured me that he would arrange my schedule (I work for him) so I could leave the house for work at 7 a.m. then come back at 7 p.m., and that I would eat and live in his shop. I would interact with his mom only in the early morning and in the evening.

I work at my husband’s store while also running my own business. I told him that if we live together, I would only live with him, not his mother. He promised to do everything to protect me and he would not allow his mother’s opinion to affect us. I only agreed to marry him after hearing his reassurance. But then again, if we are to live together, conflicts are bound to happen. I don’t have a voice in his mother’s house, so if I get married, my life will be miserable.

Ever since my boyfriend’s mother shouted at me, I have become extremely frustrated and worried that I’ll soon be a housemaid. I absolutely refuse to live in her house.

I will be getting married in a few months, but I still feel very confused and worried, like there’s a rope around my neck. I no longer feel excited about the wedding: I feel scared. Is there a way for me to avoid becoming a bride?

His mother is his only family so there will be some gossip if we don’t live with her. But if I live with her, then I’ll be in constant misery. She’s 69 and likes to have money. I’m 33 and my boyfriend is 34.

Please advise.

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