Hi NoName and DT,
You guys have come to the right board!! You will find that there are many of us here that intensely dislike (and I say that while clenching my teeth) their MIL. Some of us unfortunately live with them and some of us just deal with them from afar.
My story is this: My husband's mother was retired and living in this big 4 bedroom house alone (she and my FIL were divorced). She then had 2 strokes that paralyzed her on her right side. Since hubby, myself and our 2 children were living in an apt and the lease came up for renewal at the same time she had her stroke (coincidence??) and sibs lived on opposite coasts, we were voted to take care of her.
No rules were made up, nobody said anything about coming out to help, although by my admission, they have helped when they could. When they do come out, we are able to get away.
It has been 3yrs and 4 months, but I really still don't like my MIL. I didn't like her when we got married (she treated my 18mo old son by a former marriage like he didn't exist - until her son threatened her with no contact at all if she didn't get over it). She butts her head into all of our situations, we have NO privacy, and she is non appreciative. Negative also. She sits in front of the tv and internet all day. She had this thing when she first got home from the hospital that no one else could change her except me because it wasn't right for her son to see her like that. That changed quickly.
She has opinions about everything. It is just so hard living with another person, let alone a parent. It all starts with "well, the kids have their lives" and then turns into "I want to die in this house".
My MIL seems to think it is her house and her rules. I tried going with that, until she got to be a dictator. Then we made it plain as day: "You don't have enough money to live in this house unless we live in it with you and split the bills". She has a caregiver she pays as we work, and our "rent" is taking care of her on the weekends.
She saves over 3500 a month. We pay more because expenses go up living with her, instead of down. She pays all her bills, the house bills, her grocery and car bills. We split gas, electric, gas, water, the maid (who doesn't really do a good job, but she keeps her because she is reliable??, the gardner, and the pest control (for ants, but we have 2 dogs, so I pay half for the flea spray).
And then we pay for cable so that she can watch all the channels in the world and veg out, but don't ask her for that money..
I wish we could move. I really do. Living with this woman has caused more stress in my marriage and health that I never thought I would have. A couple of health problems have cropped up that I never had before I moved in. I constantly think about how to act, what to say, how to say it, and I am constantly P.O'd.
This was supposed to be helping us by us saving money (a opportunity of a lifetime) but the stress has caused me to be out of work, which makes it so we can't save any money.
I love my husband, but sometimes I just want to leave the state and start over somewhere else. I am worried about him too. His health isn't the greatest.
So keep posting. Venting is helpful and maybe we can all come up with an idea (short of dropping them over a cliff) that will help all of us