Three months living with Mother-in-law Part II

It is once again time to say farewell to my Chinese mother-in-law. This sunday she will head back to China and thus her three-month reign of terror will come to an end. It has been her second time to stay with us for three months and it makes me wonder what is the difference between those two visits.

Nathan feeding his granny

First of all I have to mention what did not really change at all when comparing both three months visits. There is still the need for her to go shopping but then again she is just addicted to it. She is perfectly fine to be left alone in the Outlet Center for several hours or dropped of in some shopping district in a random city. Then there is the thing about taking pictures which only slightly changed. She surely still takes pictures and videos of nearly everything she sees but especially of Nathan. Every single day she wants us to take pictures of her together with Nathan. She is so camera focused that whenever she sees a camera just slightly pointing in her direction she starts posing, I am not joking. For example when we were in the submarine there were some guys from India taking pictures. So when they wanted to record the machines which were standing behind MIL she immediately started posing and putting on that “fake camera smile”.

So now to the things which have changed since the last time. She got better in cooking! Okay still there were times when she refused to put in any salt because it is too unhealthy but minutes later she would stuff herself with a litre of ice cream. But overall she indeed improved and these days I really love many of her noodle dishes which we have at least every second day. I think few of those noodle dishes I will miss till we go to Xi’an in August, something I would have not expected to ever happen with MIL’s cooking.

More posing with Nathan

There are also few new things which pop into my mind when reflecting about the past month. She really seems not willing to learn anything new/ get rid of bad habits. I think I don’t need to mention the lovely kitchen rag anymore but she still cleans really everything with it (I did secretly change the rag multiple times though). But there is another thing. Each evening when we try to get Nathan to sleep we take him first to our bed, play with him shortly and let him slip into his dreams. Each and every single day MIL came into our bedroom checking on Nathan when he is just falling asleep resulting that he wakes up again and being very very grumpy. To this day there has been no exception to this and she truly believes that he starts crying because he wants to be held by her…it does not even cross her mind that she is the cause of him getting so upset every night.

All in all I can say that the three months passed by quickly, actually too quickly as she was a big help when it comes to take care of Nathan and preparing all the food. My wife has less time these days due to her business and I am just trying to help out whenever I am able somehow. Did you notice that I didn’t show any pictures of the apartment/ kitchen? Well, it looks like a hell here and I do not even dare to check out the kitchen myself.

How would you survive in case your mother-in-law stays with you for three months?

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31 thoughts on “Three months living with Mother-in-law Part II”

  1. It is great that she was such a help to you guys. As far as MiLs are concern, she may not be perfect but she does have good intentions.

    Be on the lookout for a article I plan to post in the coming month or two because MILs in Taiwan. My friend’s MIL from hell will make yours seems like roses on a beautiful day.

  2. Maybe you just got used to MIL’s cooking. Is it only noodles or does she cook rice too? It sounds like MIL’s visit is without much incident this time round apart from the kitchen rag 😀

    Haha, MIL is trusting what Nathan is feeding her. Who knows, that could have been something he plucked up from the ground, revenge for making him cranky at night 🙂

    1. She does also cook rice and all the dishes surrounding it but until yesterday they didn’t taste really like anything (my wife agrees). There were actually many stories however I didn’t get around writing them all down yet or posting them

  3. Will it work if you just lock the door to your room so that she cannot come in and disrupt your lulling Nathan to sleep? Or will she just bang on the door if she finds the door locked? Maybe you can try it next time she visits.

  4. I love my MIL, but I am honestly so relieved that she lives on the opposite side of the world, and we don’t have to contend with her on a regular basis. Then, again, I feel the same way about my own mother…so perhaps it’s just a mother thing, not a MIL thing. 😉

    1. It seems mother and MIL’s are all around the world the same. I am also happy to see my mom from time to time but that’s plenty as there is always something she has to nag about 😉

  5. The rag! Oh, yes, the nasty kitchen rag exists at my MIL’s house also. Can you imagine how nasty, stinky, and mildewy it gets in Hawaii? I keep trying to make it disappear. No luck yet.

    1. At the beginning MIL always found the thrown away rags and took them out of the trash…at least she lets me secretly change them these days without searching for the old ones 🙂

  6. Wow. I don’t know what I’d do if my MIL came to stay with us for 3 months. I’d panic even though I adore her, because no privacy! Fortunately, she isn’t the type to impose — I’m very lucky, lots of MIL’s in Tw are of the in-your-face-at-all-times variety. I did live with my in-laws for more than two years, when my husband and I were dating (before marriage!) So I guess that means they’re fairly progressive, although its becoming more and more common for couples to cohabit before tying the knot here. Well intentioned, as is your MIL, mine used to go into our room to ‘clean’ but seemed like she was using it as an excuse to go snooping. It’s good we moved out, much happier now. I’m glad my husband agreed to move out, too. It was hard to convince him to, because living at home he can “save money.”

    1. We only lived with my parents for several months last year as our apartment here wasnt yet ready. I think in total my wife had to endure my mother for 3 months but aways my parents just live two floors below us here…
      Now I am just looking forward to Sunday when MIL is gone 🙂

  7. Timo – you have progressed in leaps and bounds with her. Family (both sides) are so important to us so it was so encouraging that you not only acknowledged that the time went so fast but that you gave her credit where it was due 🙂

    Only a few more weeks now until you will be in Xi’an for another dose of her 🙂

    1. I am actually looking forward how she will react when she sees Nathan at the arrival hall in the airport 🙂
      There is never just one side, there are always good and bad things and no matter how annopying she can be she is still a big help for us

    1. I wish I would be, the major thing missing is good communications as my mandarin is still not fine enough. I wish. I would find time and health to do some kind of intensive mandarin course I order to talk better 🙂

  8. You are a brave man!! I couldn’t live with my partner’s mother… much as I think she is a remarkable woman. Like all mothers – she always has the best of intentions but…

    It’s good you’ve come around to enjoying some of your MILs food. So do I but I don’t actually WANT food sent practically every day – even now when our kitchen is non-functioning with all the work happening.

    I know she makes an extra effort to send veg food for me but… it is always excessively carb heavy which is the opposite of what I want when attempting to reduce carbs. And, frankly, while she is an amazing cook for anything to do with meat her veg food…? Even my partner will avoid his mom’s veg food and now that she never puts any salt in anything for health reasons (sounds familiar?), it is even harder to force eat food you don’t really want.

    But you know its all done with love so…. 🙂

    1. Like my mother-in-law makes really wonderful noodle dishes but especially her veg dishes have zero taste. Well not really zero anymore as my wife helped out a bit but still there is a lot missing 🙂

  9. I can’t believe it has already been 3 months! It passed quickly. I can remember reading your post dreading her arrival, and now she is leaving. I’m glad her cooking improved! I can understand that she wants to take a lot of pictures with Nathan, because he will grow up quickly and she can remember her adventures with him.

    I wish that my MIL had as much stamina shopping as yours does. I like to shop, but when we went shopping, she seemed to get tired quickly, so I suggested to leave early (even though I didn’t want to!).

    1. WHen my wife and her mother are out shopping a whole day seems to pass for them in an instant and poor me ending up carrying everything and trying to find some spots to rest on those neverending days :

      1. I am sympathetic to men’s shopping dislike, so I leave my husband at home when I go… I’m sorry your wife and MIL do not understand your troubles!

      2. Thus far I always had to go. First of all because my wife cant drive so I am already cursed with my driving license and well, she wants someone to carry all those things

  10. It sounds like you’re getting used to having your MIL visit for a few months. You’re seeing the good and the bad side of her visits.

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