21 Dec
Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town (But Your Mom Needs To Stay Home)

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My mom has no family other than me, which my in-laws are aware of, yet for the past few years they’ve hosted Christmas at their house and haven’t invited her. They live out of state, so my husband and I end up fighting over where I’m “supposed” to go, and I inevitably end up staying with my mom while he travels alone to see his family.

I don’t see why my mom should have to sit home alone on Christmas when she could easily be invited. Her apartment is too small to host a holiday herself, but my husband and I have hosted many holidays at our house and his parents, siblings and the siblings’ girlfriends and boyfriends are always invited. I wouldn’t ever exclude one or both of his parents.

My in-laws also think nothing of discussing Christmas plans in front of my mom when they visit for other holidays, even though she’s the only person in the room who’s not invited, which she finds very hurtful. When I’ve brought up the issue to them in the past, they claimed that they just “didn’t think of her” and she would be invited next time, but she never has been.

They’ve known my mom for years and seem to get along well with her, so I don’t know why she’s not welcome at their house. My husband has said he’s afraid of confronting his parents, so he won’t back me up if I raise the issue again. What should I do?


My Mom’s Home Alone


Dear My Mom’s Home Alone,

I usually try to understand both sides of an issue before I give my brilliant Mouthy Housewives advice, however this time I’m not doing that. Because I absolutely-100%-without- even-a-hint-of-a-doubt think this: your in-laws are being jerks.

Unless your mom is an obnoxious drunk or a racist or a loudmouth about her political/religious/Kardashian views, I don’t see any reason why they wouldn’t include her when they know it means so much to their daughter-in-law. My parents happily invited my husband’s mom and dad to our family gatherings from the moment we were engaged and even celebrated birthdays with them when we weren’t there. And more recently, my dad has graciously invited elderly military widows to our Christmas dinners so they don’t have to spend the day alone. (Which is a wonderful thing until that scrappy Edith tries to steal the last drumstick.)

As to why your in-laws being so stingy in this time of giving? Well, they could be one of those families that tend to be rather clannish and don’t like outsiders. (“It’s just The Andersons!”) Or they don’t like your mother for some reason they won’t disclose. Or maybe, and most probably, they’re just completely thoughtless. But the reason doesn’t really matter when it’s causing you and your mom so much hurt.

My advice is to tell your husband again that this is a huge problem for you. They’re his parents, and you’ve already let them know how you feel, so he’s got to man up and talk to them. If he does, great. If not, tell him that you’ll be spending the holiday with your mother and not him. It’s an unfortunate situation, but nobody should be alone on the holidays and you’re a good daughter for knowing that.

I wish you the best of luck with the situation and welcome any of our readers to weigh in with their advice. As Washington Irving said, “Christmas! ‘Tis the season for kindling the fire for hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart.” Hopefully your in-laws will pull their heads out and realize the wisdom of that sentiment some day soon.


Wendi, TMH

63 Responses to “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town (But Your Mom Needs To Stay Home)”


Comment by Sally in Saudi.

Instead of asking your husband to talk to your in-laws, why don’t you assume they meant what they said and remind them that they need to invite her. Or just bring her along.
We live overseas and our daughter spends Thanksgiving with my sister’s family. When her mother-in-law invited them for dinner, she was reminded that Maggie would be there and the response was “Of course, she’s invited too”

Desperate Dietwives Reply:

I totally agree. Or else call your in-laws and simply announce them that your mother will be coming along with you and your husband. Don’t ask, just announce it.

Cate8 Reply:

yes this is exactly what you should do. it’s your Mom not some random stranger!!

elissameck Reply:

yes – was going to say the same thing. “great! thanks for inviting us! we’ll be there and my mother will be joining us! looking forward to a merry christmas all together!”

Home Alone Reply:

It’s funny that everyone’s saying this because I’ve thought about but I’m really shy and I can’t shake the idea that it would be rude, even though they “announce” that they’re bringing extra people and pets and I don’t get a say in it. I don’t usually mind but it would be nice if they asked.


Comment by TheHappyBaker.

What concerns me here is why your husband won’t man up and confront his parents. What’s the deal with that?

Next time they start discussing Christmas in front of your mother, that would be an excellent time to turn to your mom and say, “That sounds like fun. I’m so glad you’ll be coming.”

Then make it so.

Poker Chick Reply:

This was a red flag for me as well.


Comment by Cate8.

I am concerned, too, just like TheHappyBaker. Why is he leaving you and your Mom home alone on Christmas??


Comment by Kelly.

I agree with everyone that this situation would be a lot easier for you if your in-laws would graciously include your mom in their celebrations. However, I have some sympathy for their position too. You say they live out of state and this makes me wonder if the holidays is their only chance to have all their kids together in one place and have their “own family” time without the presence of outside guests.
In any case, you’re a married woman and part of that means that your husband is your “#1” family. You need to be with him on holidays and make decisions about what is in the best interest of the two of you, not your mom. And this means doing the right thing (being with him at his family’s house, without your mom, as they have not invited her) even when it’s not the thing you want to be doing. Maybe you can decide that your Christmas gift to everyone is that in 2012, you will help your mom get more involved in other relationships and friendships that don’t include you. As your marriage grows and perhaps you have kids of your own, you are not going to be able to continue to offer your mom the same amount of your time and energy and everyone will be happier if she can become a bit more self reliant, even if that means hosting her own holiday gatherings of other singles. Easier said than done, I recognize.

Roxy Reply:

Really Kelly? Obviously your just as selfish as the in laws… “outside guests”? It’s her Mother for Petes sake! The husband needs to grow some balls and do what is right for his wife.. His parents are obviously jealous of the mother in law and know their son is spineless. They are mean and ignorant people. And you condone this cruel behavior towards their daughter in law?

Angie Uncovered Reply:

Christmas is about family. While her husband should be her #1 family, she should be HIS as well. No one should have to spend Christmas alone or feel like they’ve been foisted off on friends because their family is too busy for them.

Her husband should invite his mother-in-law to their family Christmas. His parents have said that she should be included and as they fail to actually invite her themselves, he can step up and do it. I bet it would mean the world to both his wife and mother in law if he extended the invite.

Danielle Reply:

It’s cruel to leave her out. I hope you never end up alone with children who care nothing for you Kelly. This couple should be working this out. If they can host at their house why aren’t they? They should make it tradition, it’d be easier when they have kids.

Home Alone Reply:

I’m the one who wrote in and I guess I should clarify that husband and I host Thanksgiving so we don’t usually host Christmas too. Also, we’re not having kids so that won’t be an issue in this mess.

Danielle Reply:

I’d switch and have his family host Thanksgiving while you host Christmas. Thanksgiving would be a less awful time to be left out I think.

mtwildflower Reply:


Sorry, Kelly, but this must be your brother and his wife that YOUR family is so happy to leave your SIL’s mother out. That is the ONLY explanation I can think of for you even THINKING this way.

Dear Mom Alone,

I have hosted a number of large family gatherings and they are always, always open invitation. In fact, I have always just taken for granted that people would “know” they were invited without my having to give them a lot of fanfare and some have misunderstood me because of that. It’s something I have to work on, but I have never, ever purposely excluded anyone. I suspect and really, really hope this is the case here.

I would call your in-laws and say you are bringing your mother along and then ask what you can bring to help with the celebration. I would also make sure to cover anything like gifts for her so that she has plenty to open, if that’s the thing with his family, and so that they don’t have to worry about getting her anything if they were too insensitive to plan ahead, especially at this late date. I would also mention this, if necessary. “I have plenty of gifts for Mom, so don’t worry about that part at all.”

I am concerned, however, with your husband, Mr. Milquetoast. Does he really think this is an issue he has to ‘confront’ his parents about? Does it have to be confrontational? Why not just ask? Or say, “We are bringing Mary’s mother as well when we come. We can’t wait to see everyone.”

If he’s that stinking timid, what is it going to be like when you guys are raising kids.

Perhaps he needs to shop for a spine.

Home Alone Reply:

It was hard enough for me to speak to them about it once, especially since my husband told me he wouldn’t back me up. His parents are nice people but they can be controlling and he finds it easier to do things their way. At least we’re not bringing kids into this. His mother already tells me what to do. Kids would make it worse.

Home Alone Reply:

Kelly, I resent the implication that she isn’t self-reliant just because she wants to be included. She lives alone and has always worked full-time so how is she not self-reliant? She wants to be there one day a year, not move in and have them take care of her. As I said, her home is too small to host anything and who has a “singles” event on Christmas day? Sorry if I sound angry but my in-laws are controlling and I’ve been dealing with stuff like this for years. It’s not just this one thing.

Kelly Reply:

I apologize for the word choice. I definitely wasn’t implying that your mom is not a self-reliant person. In reading your initial letter, I did not understand that this was an every-year problem – I thought the in-laws only hosted occasionally and was suggesting that if (on those infrequent Christmases) your mom was, say, hosting a brunch for people without family in the area, and then going to a movie on Christmas afternoon, you might both feel better about the holidays you had to spend apart. I, like you, am from a family of “includers”ย. My husband is not. Given that the holiday (we alternate) is the only day of the year his parents have their kids together, I try to give them a pass on not being inclusive of in-laws, friends, etc. It’s not how I would choose to host, but it’s their prerogative.

Also, my husband is terrible at standing up to his parents too and it has taken years of fighting for me to figure this out, but the more I play the supportive spouse, hold my tongue, and refrain from fighting about them, the more he comes around to my side. The calmer and nicer I am, the more apparent their bad behavior/craziness is. It’s taken years, but now he’s the one that limits our time with them or points out their “quirks”ย. I realize this isn’t the same as him demanding that your mom be invited, but maybe there’s some nugget in that experience for your situation.

In reading your other comments, it is clear that there is much more to this story. I am sorry that your in-laws are so difficult. I hope you’re planning several rewards for yourself after the holidays, just for getting through them. Sounds like you deserve a spa day. And again, I apologize for the misunderstanding.

Home Alone Reply:

No worries, and I do see your point of view but obviously, my in-laws don’t take my feelings into consideration. I see a lot of give on my part and nothing but take on theirs. Unlike your situation, I find that the more I keep my mouth shut and go along, the more they walk all over me.


Comment by irlmumof2.

Be sure to mention it first, but just bring your mom. In mine and my husband’s family, their is always room for one (or two or three) more at the table. We just found out our foster daughter’s bio brother and grandma have no where to go Christmas day, so they are coming with us to my sis-in-law’s. I mentioned it first, sis-in-law was like “ok, I have 22 people then, I have this much meat blah blah” I was like “ok, I’ll bring this and that and another roast” and all was right with the world.


Comment by muffintopmommy.

Wow, I find this incredibly cruel and not in the spirit of Christmas. I really think the husband’s attitude is disappointing—he won’t even talk to his parents about inviting his mother in law? Really? Grow a pair. And further, his parents should be mortified that he is showing up for a holiday without his wife and get a freaking clue as to WHY! I don’t see what the big deal is in just inviting the mother in law to come? In my house growing up, our friends were always welcome at our house, even on holidays. Christmas Eve was SO fun as we would never know who would be popping in that night–but it would always be a super fun crowd. Now my hubs and I have started the tradition of inviting friends who are around over to our house on Christmas eve. And we started hosting T-giving after we were married and invited both families–the more the merrier as the saying goes. Maybe these two should start doing that–make some new traditions. Really anything but leaving your own mother home alone. That’s just horrible! p.s. She can come to my house! We have plenty of booze and food!


Comment by Bean.

PILs know you’re not there at Christmas. They know WHY you’re not there (presumably). They still don’t invite Mom to join in?

I suspect they prefer Christmas without either you or your mom.

You and DH need to have a big ole sit-down. Because there is something very wrong with this picture. First: you should not be doing Christmas apart unless there’s no other option; and second, no one should be alone on Christmas except for a really, really good reason.

Danielle Reply:

I agree. This needs to be figured out before kids enter the picture as well!

Home Alone Reply:

Yeah, I told my husband he can tell his parents why I’m not there but I’m not sure what he’s actually telling them. They’ve never indicated they that don’t like me or my mom so I hope it’s lack of tact on their part. They’re sort of rude in an “I don’t know better” kind of way.

Karin Reply:

I hope he’s a good husband otherwise – this would be a dealbreaker for me and almost was when my SIL uninvited me to Thanksgiving the year before hubby and I got married so that they could have one more “just us” (+her hubby) holiday b/c they needed to talk about family stuff (we hadn’t officially gotten engaged at that point but were ring shopping so it was imminent and obvious). Hubby came over after the meal and I asked what was so important to talk about that I had to be uninvited. He said that there was nothing in particular that they talked about. I sent him back home and said that he could come back when he figured it out – call me in an hour or two weeks, however long it took.

Home Alone Reply:

Wow, Karin, I think what happened to you is even worse than what my in-laws are doing. How could they basically tell you “we don’t want you here” without realizing how mean that sounds? I’m glad you had the guts to tell your husband what was up because I have a had time standing up for myself. It kind of makes me smile when other people do it.

Home Alone Reply:

And yeah, he’s a really good husband. He’s just spineless and so am I. Like attracts like, I guess.

Karin Reply:

we’ve now been married for 10 years and have 3 kids. They still aren’t great inlaws. SIL is controlling – moreso since she got divorced – and dh doesn’t stand up to his big sis unless I put my foot down – in this case, like did not attract like – and the whole family caters to her. I get the feeling that they don’t really like me all that much, I KNOW that they don’t take my (or my kid’s) schedule into consideration but I tell hubby when it’s getting to me and he sticks up for me (he’s just now starting to see it without me pointing it out)


Comment by Megan.

It breaks my heart to think of your mom alone on Christmas. How awful. In my family we include everyone, even my grandmother’s “gentleman friend” – after she died.

Your husband needs to discuss this with his parents and get it straightened out. It doesn’t have to be confrontational. It is his place to have these tough conversations with his parents, as it would be yours if it was your mother the issue was with. He needs to explain that he wants to spend Christmas with his ENTIRE family, which now includes you and your mother. If it turns out the invitation is implied, then they need to start inviting her out loud.

Karin Reply:

That’s how it was when my grandparents were alive – Christmas Eve was a huge party with EVERYONE under the sun – 50+ people and carpool to midnight mass. Christmas day was much lower key – just us at our house in the morning and then whoever’s around (aunts, uncles, cousins) for an early dinner.


Comment by Chunky Mama.

My advice is to just bring her along. Don’t even ask for permission or an invite. Just tell them, we’ll see you at Christmas and my mother will be joining us. And if they sputter (doubtful), just say “Oh, I just assumed she was welcome and you forgot to invite her like last time.”
Don’t even make it an option for anyone going forward. Your mother is to be included. End of discussion.


Comment by VG.

Just bring her. And deal with the aftermath later. No one will act like jerk in front of company ๐Ÿ™‚


Comment by Sad Santa.

This makes me very sad. I think it’s wonderful that you try to include your mother. Holidays can be a joyful or lonely time of the year, based on events like this. I agree with the majority of the comments here (he should stand up to his parents, she’s his family now too, your FIL sucks, etc). Being thoughtful goes a long way, especially in situations like this. I am curious…how does your husband and mother get along?


Comment by Alex@LateEnough.

Your husband should stay home this year and have Christmas with you and your mom. You can’t make your inlaws invite anyone to their home, but your husband can prioritize you and recognize that your family is now his family, too.

I'm a big ol' b with a captial B! Reply:

AMEN! I was hoping someone was going to say this! He needs to stay home with you and your mom. You guys do your own thing. If his parent’s balk at it then that’s when he says, “Oh, we didn’t want to leave Home Alone’s mom alone on Christmas and I insist on spending Christmas with my wife. She comes first. I guess we’ll see you next year when her mom is invited, too!”

Seriously, there is no regulation that any of you need to go to his parents at Christmas.


Comment by BestofSeven.

You say your husband’s parents live out of state, but not how far away. Would you stay with them overnight? Is it an issue of them not having room to have your mom stay over or not wanting to have an extra overnight guest (or 3) during a crazy time of year? If it is, maybe you can offer for you, your husband, and mom to stay at a hotel to help alleviate the issue.
If it’s just for the day, I wouldn’t mind if someone brought someone extra to a holiday celebration (I’d appreciate a heads-up but would roll with it even if they didn’t give me one), but if someone is going to be staying overnight without me knowing they were going to do so, it might take me a moment before I would be able to respond charitably. (I would, but it might take me another glass of wine first.) I have a large family and if each of my siblings brought members of their spouses’ families for extended stays, I could run out of food and room fast.
Regardless of where you spend Christmas, I do think you and your husband should be spending it together.
Good luck!

Home Alone Reply:

We’d be staying overnight and they live in a rural area that doesn’t have nearby hotels. It would only be one extra guest and when I brought it up they didn’t say that space was issue because they’ve had extra people there before. I make room for them, my siblings-in-law, their dogs, and their significant others so I don’t see one extra person being a big deal.


Comment by BrassyDel.

Husband needs to tell his parents he ain’t coming home without his wife AND her lonely mother. Since they have said she will be invited “next time” before, he can confront them without the big guns.

“hey, mom and dad! You forgot to invite Suzy again. I’ll let her know when the party is, and we’ll probably carpool. Oh man, it’s gonna be so nice to have my WHOLE FAMILY together for xmas this year, right? Let me know if we can bring anything.”

BAM! Problem solved. If they have the guts to tell him no, she can’t come, then he can say he’s sorry to hear that, as he will be spending the holidays with HIS WIFE.


Comment by Twinkles.

Why is your HUSBAND even considering leaving you on Christmas? Why on earth would he run to his mother’s and leave you behind?? I bet if he stayed and celebrated with you ONE TIME your mom would have an invitation ever after.

LR Reply:

Do your inlaws have an issue with you? If they are willing to let you stay home with your mother rather than inviting her so you could join them, it really makes me wonder if they are trying to shut you out. I would be incredibly offended. And I’d be even more offended that my husband wouldn’t stand up for me to his family.

This is where you need to set limits TOGETHER and hold to them. Tell them that after so many years apart, this is your mother’s year to spend Christmas with BOTH of you together. So unless they would like to invite her as well, BOTH of you will have to decline, but they are certainly welcome to play their gathering on an alternate day.

One you are married, both of your families should work around your own holiday schedule. There is no rule that either family gets you on the actual holiday, and especially not every year. But I don’t see anything changing if your husband can’t stand up to his family. Good luck with that one.

Karin Reply:

I agree – all he has to do is say, I’m spending Christmas with my wife this year.

I can see why spouses spend holidays apart especially at the beginning of their marriage. My bff and her husband did this for the first 2 years they were married – although everyone lives within an hour of each other – there was just no home big enough to host that large of a party – her parents, her brother and his inlaws, his wife’s sister’s inlaws, a few family friends that they’ve been doing Christmas with for the past 20 years or so plus bff’s husband’s mother, her sister, hubs sister and her inlaws – it comes to like 75 people between the 2 families when you count all the kids. If it was just a couple people – even 5 or 6 – on either side, the other side would have just invited them to join them. Anyway, the first year, they realized that things were planned for the same time; the second year, the families tried to adjust so that they could do both and ended up making it more difficult to make it to both celebrations; last year, they got it down – dinner at one house, dessert at the other.


Comment by Heather.

I think bringing the mother without discussing it with the hosts isn’t the best idea. I also think just saying she’s coming along is possibly the passive-aggressive way to handle it.

If the husband doesn’t have the balls to discuss it with his parents, well, I can grow my own pair when needed. Call them and politely discuss the situation with them so they understand the position you’re in. They will either be gracious and invite her then, or the truth will come out that they’re real assholes. In that case, it would be time for me to draw some lines with my husband. That whole “husband is #1” bullshit works both ways.

Karin Reply:

They said she was invited the next time so it’s not too passive-aggressive, it’s just reminding them of a past commitment they made.

Home Alone Reply:

I’m worried about doing that too because I don’t want to be rude but I think it’s probably a good idea because they pull that with me all the time. When they visit my house, they run the show and they laugh about how they get away with not respecting boundaries at our house. I don’t mean to sounds childish but they started the whole “being rude to your host” thing so I probably shouldn’t worry about being passive-aggressive.

Heather Reply:

I still say take the higher road and do the honorable thing. I have a passive-aggressive mother, so I understand all of the feelings and complications that go along with those kinds of family relationships. But I’ll be damned if I’m going to be like her, even though she started it first.

My mentor told me we can’t solve all the problems, but we can do our part by not being one of them. If I base my actions by what my mother does, then I would just be another part of the problem.


Comment by Emily.

Your husband needs to cut his apron strings and stand by his wife. If his wife cannot attend an out of town event that’s as large as Christmas, then he should stay with her.

I also think you should tell your inlaws that your mother is coming with you if you’d prefer to go.

but spouses should not celebrate holidays differently like this. You’re just asking for more and more things to come between you. Now it’s Christmas, in a few years, maybe he’ll go to his parents for something else and think nothing of the fact that you aren’t going ‘because you never go anyways’. Or maybe he will start thinking you hate his parents and view you negatively in that light.

You are his wife. You are his most important relationship. He needs to fix this. And one way or another, he needs to be with his spouse for Christmas.


Comment by Kelly.

I’ve been with my dh for 17 years & every single thing we do, we have both sets of parents present, no matter what. What unthoughtful, rude in-laws you have! No matter what, she should be included.


Comment by Akamomma.

Maybe sleeping arrangements are an issue? With all that family coming from out-of-state, they may not have the room. I say call the MIL tell her you would like to come but there is no way you are leaving your mom alone on Christmas. Offer to get yourself a hotel room and pick-up some food, if they would let your mom attend. If they refuse then you know they don’t like you and/or your mom and don’t put yourself out for them anymore. PS. Your husband is obviously easily manipulated by his parents, so why don’t you use their methods on him. It’s obviously not healthy, but it sure as hell works.


Comment by rojopaul.

Wow! Quite a bit of traffic on THIS one, that’s for sure. My first response is that when you get married you LEAVE your family and your priority shifts to your new family, which is you and your husband. Obviously, holidays are different (i.e., a time for family) but NOT at the expense of either you or your husband. I am in the group that votes hubby call (since it’s his family) and say you’re trying to finalize plans and NEITHER of you (so they know you are aligned in your thinking and it’s not that he wants to come but YOU are being difficult) want your mom to be alone on Christmas, so you can either bring her along, or you all are planning to stay home this year so you can spend time with her. If they don’t respond positively, then you say you understand and you’ll look forward to spending time with them in 2012 at another time. It doesn’t have to be an ultimatum and no one has to be rude. You are actually in a good position because you are in another state and that can make things easier. Since you said you don’t plan on having children, you’ll always be the ones expected to get up and go and the sooner you nicely start saying no, the better.

I have a girlfriend who’s in-laws are 5 minutes away, they have no children by choice, and her in-laws are nuts. Her hubby is the baby and just can’t cut the strings. In my friend’s case, they’ve been married 7 years and still can’t take a vacation without his parents coming along. (And these are people in their upper 40s – certainly old enough to know better.)

I understand not making waves and trying to keep the peace. But your mother’s wishes are just as important as theirs are and it’s only fair to rotate if they aren’t willing to accommodate her joining in.

Good luck! Let us know how it all works out!


Comment by Poker Chick.

I had a husband like that. Operative word being “had”. I’m usually much more PC but suggest telling your husband that if he’s interested in still being married to you he’s got to say something to them and stick up for you and what matters to you. Period.


Comment by Em.

I’m with the girls who say; Bring your mom! They’ve admitted to “forgetting” to invite your mom. Honestly, it sounds to me like a cover-up. From one introvert/non-confrontationalist (is that a word?) to another, you’re going to have to bite that bitter, scary bullet and talk to his parents yourself. Bring your ever-loving husband with you and show him what a strong woman you are. Don’t do it alone! Wait, you live out of state. Skype it, or conference call them, or whatever. Hubby sounds indifferent over the matter. Does he know something you don’t? He’d spend Christmas without you? That happened to me one year. I found out later that my husband was cheating on me (not that yours is!!) I sincerely hope your and your husband have a solid relationship and I don’t mean to jump to conclusions. But WHY would your husband choose to spend the holiday without you? How often does that happen? Are we talking here and there, or every year?


Comment by Home Alone.

It’s been every christmas for the last few years and the truth is, he doesn’t want to go because he hates travelling but he’s afraid to say “no” to his parents. This is not a cheating issue because he tries to guilt me into coming and gets mad that he has has to “drive there by myself.” He’s just kind of a weenie about telling his parents the truth


Comment by Home Alone.

I just wanted to thank Wendi and everyone in the comments for weighing in and being so supportive. My husband and I have spoken about this again and he said that the way his parents do things “isn’t right” but he still won’t speak to them about it. It’s too late to fix things this year but I’m working up the courage to speak to my in-laws again on my own. I feel more confident knowing that the consensus here was pretty universal in being on my side. I do see things from the other point of view but I just can’t leave my mom alone after I’ve been so inclusive of everyone else and I’m glad that people here don’t think I should have to.

Ace Reply:

Amen, sister! I am so sorry your husband is being totally inconsiderate of your feelings. If he can’t give you a specific reason why your mom is excluded, then I really do not understand this situation at all. I hope you are able to make some kind of peace about it. I would never be able to go to the in-law’s leaving my Mama alone for the holidays ๐Ÿ™ I can’t believe how insensitive your in-laws are being in this situation. I’d be pissed enough about it to not bother going to their house at all, but I am a big fat ol’ grudge-holder! I hope you’re able to do something special with your mom.


Comment by sisterfunkhaus.

Why don’t you call or e-mail your MIL and ask her if mom can tag along??? Maybe you are being too formal about this invite thing. Maybe they assume you will ask if you want her to come. I know that is how it is with my family, and my husband’s. We can pretty much bring anyone as long as we ask/inform first.


Comment by N and Em's mom.

A late comment here- your in-laws are oafs. It is extremely rude to discuss plans or parties in front of someone who isn’t invited. If they say that she will be invited, then she is. I bet when you call the MIL, she will play the victim and declare that your mother has always been invited and didn’t come. If these people are this awful, why do you want to go. Save your pennies and take your mom on a trip far away from these awful people.


Comment by Ace.

I am honestly shocked that when your husband says “My wife isn’t coming to the family Christmas gathering because she doesn’t want her mother to be alone,” his family doesn’t say, “Well, why doesn’t she just come along?”

Holy cow. I agree with Wendi when she said, “Unless your mom is an obnoxious drunk or a racist or a loudmouth about her political/religious/Kardashian views, I don’t see any reason why they wouldn’t include her.” I do have a couple of friends who have all but alienated their children and friends by being one or two of the aforementioned…. If you don’t see any of those qualities in your mother, I also don’t understand why she isn’t someone they could at least ‘tolerate’ for a day or two.

They live out of state, so do you stay in their home or a hotel when you visit? If the sleeping situation calls for you to get a hotel room, you may consider doing that.

And man o man, I don’t think at this point your husband is going to magically grow any balls to stand up to his family. I hope you do! One more time, just say, “My mom goes where I goes at the Holidays.” So they know, if you’re invited, she is invited. Otherwise, it’s not your “duty” to spend the holidays with your husband’s family. You do something special with your mom and let him contemplate the future of your happiness together if he can’t pull his head out of his ass and stand up for you — his #1 family.


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Comment by ShesJo.

I see this thread is old, but the holiday season is coming around again, so I thought another response wouldn’t be irrelevant.

It seems to me his mother is using the situation to get her baby boy all to herself. She doesn’t invite her daughter in-law’s mother for the very reason that she’ll stay with her mother and the son will attend alone.

Home Alone’s husband is reinforcing her behavior by attending alone.

The son should bow out for a couple of Christmases at his mother’s, saying he already has made plans with his wife, but offer the option of visiting the next day.

Maybe a couple of baby boy-less Christmases will change her tune.


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