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Dealing with Sabotage



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Hi everyone,

I'm having a really tough time dealing with my mother in law. There's no kicking her out, my husband won't because his other siblings won't take her in. (She tried to split up his brother with his new wife just after they had a baby, and his oldest sister has ended all contact with her)

Part of the reason I did this surgery is to have a reason to say no to her feeding me/guilt tripping me to eat junk food. Before she moved in 5 years ago. I was 130lbs. I know it's 100% My responsibility what goes in my mouth, but over the years, she's made it so hard. I was done, defeated. After reaching out and getting therapy, they think cutter her off will be the only way to have long term weightloss success.

She's not meant to do any shopping but she does, all she buys is junk food in the reduced section. She buys so much, she bought a massive freezer to store it all in. The worst part is that she has no idea of how calories work, so she thinks eating healthy food = will undo all the junk she ate, so in her mind by eating all of it, after a chocolate binge, she'll lose weight so she will eat all the meat and vege in the house (she's about 450lbs) and then guilt trips us because we didn't eat the 5 cakes, 6 packs of donuts she bought etc.

I thought with this surgery I could just say "I can't eat those things, they could kill me" and maybe she would stop buying this much junk.

Sadly no, she's going H.A.M at me now. She threw a tantrum when my husband told her I was getting the surgery, tried everything in her power to stop me from getting it done. Once I had it done, she started spreading rumors, said I spend $25000 on cosmetic surgery etc, she's just really making life hard for me, mentally and physically. She's also started eating my Protein Water, eating my Optifast, denying it. Then offering me things like donuts when I have no food in the house, which I can't eat, I had surgery 15 days ago, and shes refusing to acknowledge it. Instead she'll buy my favorite junk food and put it on display and keep telling me it needs to be eaten NOW. I found out a few days ago, the meals I make for my husband she keeps throwing in the bin to justify buying the junk, she said he throws them out because he hates them and he's a bad husband and I should leave him, I told him this and he said he'd never do that and that she's been saying him I'm useless and I'm not cooking for him and if he wanted she can ask me to leave. So she's clearly started trying to put us against each other, he said she used to do this to him and his siblings as kids and we just need to ignore what she says and tell each other, so we know what's going on.

I'm just so exhausted, I can't keep living like this, I have to hide my food and I've started to think about the next stages, which are going to be so much harder to stop her from sabotaging. I just want to be able to meal prep and have a normal life but my husband has said, she can't buy a house until interest rates settle down, there's no rentals in the area and he can't kick her out because she will have nowhere to go, so we just have to put up with her until then. I just think I needed to rant about this but at the same time I'm just really tired and I just want to have a normal life. It feels like I'm probably going to be hiding optifast and just using that for meals until she's gone, because I can't trust anything in the kitchen.

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IMO, the real problem here is your husband.

"my husband has said, she can't buy a house until interest rates settle down, there's no rentals in the area and he can't kick her out because she will have nowhere to go, so we just have to put up with her until then."

None of those things are your and your husband's problem. I'm sure there are some rentals, somewhere. She has lost the privilege to live in your home, and she needs to deal with the consequences.

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Oh my, I am sorry you are going through this. She is clearly a manipulator, for whatever reasons she has came up with in her head. Likely hating herself and trying to bring the people around her down to her.

I know it can be hard, balance between not hurting your husband but also not dealing with her ****. Have the BOTH of you sat down and talked to her together and VERY directly? Make it very clear that if she doesn't back up and respect your house, your personal goals and your relationship she will be forced to leave and if she doesn't have anywhere to go it will then be her problem. I don't know if it will help but definitely worth a shot.

Then, at that point I am on board with @sillykitty it is her problem. She didn't respect either of you, so she does not deserve the same respect.

If none of these things work and you just end up stuck with her, maybe get a mini fridge for your bedroom and put your foods and prepped meals in there? Or be a real d**k back and get a lock for the refrigerator so she can't access it. Then she can figure it out herself. Could even do the same thing with a few cabinets, so only you and husband have access to them. I know it sounds ridiculous but at that point I would say it is desperate measures.

I wish you the best! Hang in there.

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I can resonate with this to a level, since I have my mom living with me for a year and she does as she pleases disregarding the way we live and the rules we have in place, nothing with food but just this idc attitude that we don't do.

Great job with keeping communication open with your husband and being honest with each other. I have to agree that you both need to sit down with her and lay out your rules and expectations from her, at the end of the day she is a guest in your house and if she can't comply she can go somewhere else.


Sent from my SM-G960U1 using BariatricPal mobile app

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So glad that you can feel you can rant on here. Mother in laws are not teddy bears are they. They forget where they are in the pecking order. It's your home and she's trying to be dominant. Eventually one of you will have to leave and I hope your husband comes to his senses. He needs to see that you don't need this stress in your life, especially when you are trying to heal. You have enough new stuff to deal with without this going on

You could get locks as others have said or buy your food daily and cook it. OR tell hubby he has a month to deal with this woman or else you are off out of it. I wish I could hug you.

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I’m so sorry you’re going through this. May I suggest marriage counseling if your spouse isn’t supporting you. This is a lot to deal with. Wish you the best

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She has severe behavioral mental health issues and she is threatened by you wanting better.

your husband needs to stand up to her and defend you to keep her mental issues from impacting you so greatly and childishly. If he won’t, you have a lot to think about.


you deserve to not be belittled and demeaned by her in your own home. You deserve to make your life better. Ignoring her is not an option when she is escalating her behavior. Be blunt and stand up for yourself. It is worth it, trust me. I had to do similar with my own husband before surgery (his behavior) and it feels horrible but is worth finding out where you stand. Either he will stand with you or he won’t and you will make your choices from his actions from there out.

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Oh my god, I am so sorry. What a horrible situation to be put in in such a vulnerable time of your life. She sounds evil for trying to enable you & destroy your hard work like this. I wish there was something that could be done to bring you peace but the fact that there's no options for her to move out is horrible :(

AND PLEASE if you need to rant here more, lay it all out. Please let this be a positive outlet for you during such a crucial time.

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Misery loves company. It sound like she is miserable with herself and she wants someone to be miserable with her while she controls them. I am so sorry you are going through this, i would tell my husband to tell her she has to move. I am sorry to sound harsh but she can go to a shelter until she can get housing. Don't give up and don't give in to her that is what she wants!

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I think your husband needs to step up and either have her leave or tell her to knock it off.

And next time she does this...

"Instead she'll buy my favorite junk food and put it on display and keep telling me it needs to be eaten NOW."

Just say oh yea I guess it does need to be eaten, well I guess you should get on that.

Sorry...that's my 2 cents.

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oh, and hand your husband a trash bag and tell him to throw away her junk food ……… she is in your house

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Thanks everyone for all your understanding and input, it makes me feel a little less crazy.

My Husband has been throwing out any junk food she leaves on the kitchen counter like whole cakes, donuts, Cookies and chips and she's started annoying him by picking all the meat out of dishes and eating it leaving just Pasta etc. So he's started saying once shes gone, he wont talk to her anymore as he's done, it would be nice for action though.

We've also had a few chats with her, she just acts clueless, denies everything, hums random songs over us talking, acts like she's got dementia or says she must (she jokes about it) or laughs it off. Her daughter has been diagnosed with Borderline personality disorder and thinks her mum has it to but there's no way she'd get help, she enjoys messing with lives, hence why her daughter cut all ties with her.

I think I'll do what many of you have suggested and buy a small fridge with a lock. My husband and I are renting this place but we're looking at buying and he's said once we move, she can stay in this rental by herself and pay her own bills or find elsewhere as she's not moving with us. Hopefully this is sooner rather than later. Thanks again everyone for all your support.

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The next time she buys your favorite junk food and tells you that it needs to be eaten now. I would pick it up and throw it in the garbage disposal or garbage can and make sure she sees you do it. Forcefully tell her you cant eat that and everytime she brings junk food into the house it will be thrown away. Im sorry you are having to deal with her.

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Wow... Just, wow... I agree with others about locking the fridge and cabinets - and throwing away all the junk she brings into the home.

Ask her if she wants to go into a lockdown dementia facility. Because the way she's acting, that's where she belongs. You might want to have an intake nurse come evaluate her, just to prove the point that you mean business. If she doesn't straighten up and fly right, she's being sent to a home. Clearly she's incapable of feeding herself proper food and she's losing her memory - proven by her eating your special food and saying she didn't.

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This may sound extreme, but is there somewhere you could go for the next six months or so, like your parents' house? You don't seem to be getting a great deal of support from your husband, and at this point you need to focus on your needs.

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