My in-laws claim they are indispensable to my children’s care

By Yen   March 24, 2024 | 03:08 pm PT
I recently gave birth to my second child, but my mother-in-law persistently hints at departing to her hometown, thereby avoiding taking care of me, whereas my father-in-law claims we can’t manage without their help.

Residing in a city rental with my husband, our combined monthly earnings amount to approximately VND20 million (US$807). Following the birth of our second child a few weeks ago, soliciting my mother’s help is out of the question due to her advanced age of 80 and her commitments to care for my father, a stroke survivor, back in my hometown. Meanwhile, securing domestic help proves to be both a daunting and pricey endeavor.

The arrival of our firstborn also saw us depending on my mother-in-law for support, who then had to leave my father-in-law by himself in my husband’s hometown to assist us for a duration of three months. So this time, she has again left my father-in-law to aid us with the newborn in the city, yet her stay is marred by frequent complaints as she bears grudges and initiates quarrels with us nearly every day.

She also intermittently threatens to retreat to her hometown to reunite with my father-in-law, consequently leaving us to fend for ourselves in handling domestic responsibilities.

Moreover, my father-in-law persistently contacts my mother-in-law, pressing her to come back and questions us as to why I didn’t seek assistance from my own parents. During one such conversation, he remarked: "How would you survive without us?"

Reaching my limit, I recently expressed to my mother-in-law that she should return to her hometown if she finds her stay with us overly burdensome. Her reaction was one of fury, as she interpreted my words as an eviction and ceased communication with me from that point forward, yet she chose to remain with us.

Enduring this strain, especially so soon after giving birth, is exceedingly taxing. Can you give me some advice?

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