Question from: JoAnn

Last weekend I met my boyfriend's mom for the first time. He and I have only been together a few months and I really didn't know what to expect. When I got there, she was nice enough. But all weekend she kept making jokes that I was stealing her son away from her and the jokes got harsher as the weekend progressed. I just laughed it off the whole time we were there, but I'm pretty freaked out. Is this what it's going to be like if I stay with him? Should I say something to my boyfriend? Should I talk to his mom?? Help!

My Answer:

JoAnn by the sounds of it, she is threatened by you. You represent to her the change she fears the most. The complete loss of her offspring. She's a mom and by the sounds of it, a little overbearing one. As you get to know her a little better you may find that more of her actions may annoy you worse than the snide comments and disdain for your "theft" of her son. That however is beside the point.

If you love your knight in shining armor you'll have to respectfully show this woman that you are not a push over. You'll need to stand up for yourself with nothing but a smile on your cute face when you comeback with your rebuttal to her comments. Be careful and choose your words wisely as you could cause her hate you. When that happens she could begin the wedge driving process between you and your man.

You should tell him how you feel about that whole weekend full of comments in a calm concerned manner. However he WILL just brush it off saying she was joking. I mean.. she's his Mother for Pete's sake. She will never do much of anything wrong in his eyes. See.. this is what sucks, women in general are always competitive with other women.  If she feels comfortable acting that way in front of him, it's been her demeanor for a long time. You unfortunately will not be able to change her or him. The only option you have is to gain a respect with her.

She in the end, if this relationship of yours goes head long into marriage, will have to have gained the knowledge that you will respect her for all she's done to raise your guy into the awesome man he has become, and that you will not tolerate being put down in anyway to make her look superior to you. If the tension insists after you have applied small amounts of self esteem, you may have to invite her to coffee or brunch and have a conversation.

Let her know that you and she are two different people with two different roles.  She took care of him when he was a child, taught him manners and important life lessons. She made him the man he is today. You are the one HE has chosen to be with for continued companionship, support and the love and family she cannot provide. It was HIS choice to be with you and she should respect her sons decisions, whether she believes they are correct or not. At his age she cannot make his decisions anymore.

In a perfect world she would say "You know what JoAnn you are correct, I'm glad we had this talk." but of course she may not. In that case let her vent, while giving her a disappointed look. Tell her that you are very sorry that she couldn't see this situation as you do and part ways.

Give me a shout back if you have repercussions from a negative ending. I know this is lengthy but, you'll have to do these things if you stay with him to preserve your own self respect and worth.

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