You married the perfect prince charming and expected to enjoy your marriage with him. This means that you make your own decisions together, no one interferes in your marriage, and most importantly, you are each other’s number one in life.
However, one person stands in the way of that perfect idyll, but his influence is enormous. This is your husband’s mother, your mother-in-law.
Her excessive attachment to your husband is starting to seriously affect your marriage.
What are the major signs that your mother-in-law is too attached to your husband? She has to interfere in all your marriage decisions, controls your husband, constantly criticize you, does not respect privacy, and most importantly, still expects to be the most important woman in her married son’s life.
This is a highly uncomfortable situation for you.
You don’t want to make your husband argue with his mother because that’s certainly not the solution, and you don’t want to be that person, but on the other hand, you’re fed up with the toxic influence of his mother.
In this article, we will explain in more detail the signs that your mother-in-law is toxic and offer practical solutions for dealing with this situation. So, stay until the end of the article; it will be worth it.
Is Your Mother-in-Law Too Attached to Your Husband? 4 Major Signs
The signs that your mother-in-law is crossing the line are everywhere, so let’s list the main ones; you will surely find your situation in them. And those are:
1. You And Your Husband Have No Privacy From Her
If we had to describe your mother-in-law with one song, it would be “Rockwell – Somebody‘s Watching Me.”
Great song, but what’s not great is that it happens to you just like in the song.
It is more about your husband’s privacy, but therefore also yours.
His mother doesn’t give you privacy, and you get the feeling she’s always around.
If you and your husband live with his mom, that is a special circle of hell where privacy does not exist.
However, even if you don’t live together, it doesn’t stop her from constantly dropping in unannounced. Every time she stays longer, something unplanned always happens, so she has to stay longer than planned. Yeah, right.
And when she is not with you, she calls her son and wants to talk for hours. She often asks him to call her all the time.
How often should a son call his mother anyway? You don’t know exactly, but what your mother-in-law demands is not normal.
2. She Is Great At Manipulating Her Son
Your husband is, first and foremost, a good person, and he may not realize how his mother is taking advantage of him.
She is too demanding and constantly finds new demands to ask of her son.
For example, chores around her house, your husband can’t spend a weekend with you because she keeps inventing some unnecessary obligations for him.
But in addition to being demanding, she is very manipulative and plays various mind games to control her son.
Since she knows her son is a good person and feels sorry for her, she will use this to her advantage.
Therefore, it is not difficult for her to play the role of the victim and talk about how she neglected her son just to get his attention.
3. She Acts Like Her Son Is A Child
No matter how old we are, we are always a child to our parents. That’s true, but that doesn’t mean that as an adult, you should be treated like a child by your parent.
That’s precisely how your mother-in-law acts. She spoiled her son to the extreme and continues to do so now that he is married.
She is always there to bring him food because you don’t know how to prepare it “the way he likes.”
But she also wants to participate in every decision of her son because mommy knows best what is best for him.
That’s why it interferes with his business and life decisions, even in random things like hobbies.
She only forgot one thing, when she interferes with his things, she automatically interferes with yours. And you will not tolerate that.
4. She Always Criticizes You
What is your mother-in-law criticizing about you? Well…everything!
Most often, mothers-in-law are criticized by daughters-in-law for not being good housewives. They say that daughters-in-law need to be more capable in the kitchen, they need to do more around the house, and similar.
But what if your mother-in-law doesn’t hesitate to comment on your appearance, lifestyle, education, career…
If she does all this publicly, you have a highly toxic mother-in-law who does not know about boundaries or basic decent behavior.
She constantly wants to show your husband that you are not good enough for him, even comparing you to his ex and saying she was much better.
Why is Your Mother-in-Law Too Attached to Your Husband?
It’s not uncommon for parents to be overly attached to their children, but what if that attachment becomes a problem. In that case, we are dealing with the following:
It is essential to distinguish the differences between caring and codependent parents.
While the caring parent takes care of the child and lets him live his life as he grows up, the codependent parent does not.
A codependent parent bases his emotional security on taking care of the child. Parents like this are often busy taking care of their children and forget to take care of themselves.
There are especially examples of such parents if they come from families with a history of abuse or neglect. Such behavior comes from fear.
If your mother-in-law is narcissistic, know that she can destroy your marriage.
You know what narcissists are like. They always like to be at the center of attention and will do anything to be.
It is, therefore, not a problem for your mother-in-law to create a huge fight between you and your husband just so that she can be the hero who reconciles you later.
Just as we had the example of a codependent parent, we also have a dependent parent.
It can be an emotional dependency because the life of such a parent is empty and unfulfilled without a child. But it can also be a financial dependency.
Isn’t it wrong when the parents are financially dependent on the child? That is not right at all.
You noticed that your husband keeps giving his mother money, and you are against that. That’s why you’re a problem for your mother-in-law.
How to Deal With Overly Attached Mother-in-Law?
Dealing with an overly attached mother-in-law can seem like a mission impossible. However, it is possible to change the situation with the right approach. Here’s how to do it:
1. Talk to Your Husband
It’s his mother; he has to take action.
We understand he loves his mother, but you are his first priority when he marries you. You don’t want to be the second choice.
You have to explain all that to him. But also to explain to him the dangers for your marriage due to the excessive interference of his mother.
Do you often fight because of her? Not spending enough time together? Don’t have any privacy?
He needs to do something because no woman enjoys being in a relationship with a mama’s boy.
We hope your husband takes this seriously. What is extremely bad is if he falls under the negative influence of his mother. So he starts belittling you in front of the family because of her.
2. Talk To Your Mother-in-Law
You must stand up for yourself if you are the direct target of your mother-in-law’s criticism.
It is known that daughters-in-law can be too tolerant initially because they want to have the best possible relationship with their mother-in-law.
But letting someone criticize you for no reason is never a good decision, no matter what.
That’s why address the issues at the moment and don’t let her criticisms affect you badly.
Don’t fall under her influence if she is a narcissist who enjoys tearing others down. Or if she’s the type of mother who treats her son like a husband.
3. Remember to Be Respectful
Yes, saying various things to your husband and mother-in-law is easy when you are mad. However, she is still his mother, and you should maintain some respect for her, and you don’t want to say something that will permanently damage your relationship.
Be direct but kind and respectful. Here are some examples of what you could say:
Tell your husband: “I understand that you are in a tough position, and I don’t want to make you feel like you need to choose between your mother and me. Tell her we are not shutting her out, but she must respect boundaries.”
You can tell your mother-in-law: “I understand your concern, but I’m uncomfortable with how you keep interfering in my life and marriage.”
In The End – Mothers-in-law Don’t Destroy Marriages
How not? Wasn’t that the whole point of this article?
They only destroy a marriage if their child allows them to, in this case, your husband.
You, therefore, need to explain to him that it is up to him the unwanted effects his mother is having on your marriage.
Hopefully, he will realize that and act to change that.