When entering married life, one wants to be on good terms with their in-laws.
After all, they are now part of your family, and you will be seeing them on a semi-regular basis, so it is important to try and avoid all possible conflicts.
But when one’s in-laws appear to be going out of their way to stir things up, keeping a harmonious relationship can be challenging, to say the least.
Such was the case with Redditor TATiredofmyMIL, who’s soon-to-be mother-in-law (MIL) took every opportunity she could to express her displeasure regarding a decision she made about her upcoming wedding.
Having finally had enough, the original poster (OP), finally retaliated, though in a very public setting.
Concerned she may have gone too far, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA returning the money to my MIL in front of everyone embarrassing her?”
The OP explained how she and her fiancé both had fairly different upbringings, which seemed to be a point of contention for her future MIL.
“Me (28 F[emale]) and my fiancé (27 M[ale]) are getting married in March.”
“I come from an upper-class family and my fiancée is lower-middle-class.”
“This is a delicate matter for his Family.”
“Despite me being able to pay all the costs of the wedding, my parents gave the equivalent of 70% of the value of the wedding as a gift, which would be around (30K – fictitious value) and, fortunately, my parents did not use this gift as a form of want to control everything at the party.”
“When my fiancé’s parents learned that my parents had given this gift, my fiancé and I didn’t mention it, my SIL “snitched on” them, they decided to give their gift as well and gave 3K, an amount for which I was very grateful to have received.”
“And I deeply regret doing this, especially for my MIL.”
The OP also shared that her future MIL had constantly expressed her displeasure regarding certain elements of the wedding, one in-particular, a disagreement which finally came to a rather unfortunate head.
“I don’t plan on having a ‘traditional’ wedding party.”
“My dress won’t be white (lilac), there will be no religious ceremony and it will be a party for only 30 guests and my fiancé agrees and supports this.”
“This bothers my MIL a lot, especially the dress not being white.”
“Over time, she gave up on imposing the idea of a big party and not having a religious ceremony, but the dress is something she annoys me too much.”
“And it continues even though I snapped on her or my fiancé tells her to stop.”
“Because of that, we are in LC with her.”
“Yesterday, it was my SIL’s birthday and I went with my husband, obviously my MIL was there.”
“Not even 5 minutes after I stepped into the party, she started again with the idea of me having to wear white because it’s an important tradition and it got to the point where she was talking to her sisters about how this new generation doesn’t respect traditions and that she was sorry/afraid of these new parties.”
“I had my limit when she spoke loud and clear that in her time, the bride and groom respected their parents’ opinions, even more so if they helped pay for the wedding.”
“I was very angry and said ‘Enough, I can’t take it, it’s not worth listening to other people’s sh*t for this money’.”
“I had this money in my pocket and was going to deposit that same amount in the bank later, but I gave up and gave it to her in front of everyone.”
“And I added that now she won’t say anything, because she’s not helping.”
“This generated a confusion of tremendous proportions, my fiancé’s entire family fighting on me, saying that I humiliated her in front of everyone and demeaned the amount they gave.”
“Well, I had to leave early so it wouldn’t get any worse.”
“My fiancé understands why I did it but said it wasn’t my best moment and I could have done it in private and not in front of everyone.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
The Reddit community agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for returning her MIL’s money, even in front of the whole family.
Everyone agreed that since the OP’s MIL felt the need to criticize the OP’s decisions in front of everyone, then she should have been prepared for the OP to clap back in a public setting as well.
“Never understand the argument that people who start shit in public should be given the consideration of dealing with them in private.”
“MIL started it, you finished it, she’ll think twice the next time.”-JBW66
“NTA If she wanted to play the ‘I’m paying for the wedding’ card then you had every right to give the card back and take it off the table.”
“She is the one that made it public, not you.”
“Do not respond to any of the drama and continue forward with grace.”
“You cannot control how people behave, but you can control you you react.”
“You did what you had to now leave it at that.”- LiveLovelyLala
“She brought it up and was trash -talking you in front of everyone.”
“You shut her up in front of everyone.”
“IMHO you did a good job showing her how she CANNOT treat you, and probably saved yourself a lot of MIL headaches in the future.”- 1955photo
“SUCKS TO SUCK MIL.”
“Act like an A in front of others, be treated like an A in front of others.”- cynthea12
“Had you done it privately, MIL still could have continued, since no one knew you gave the money back.”
“She didn’t give you problems privately, why should you give her more consideration than she gave you?”
“If she’s embarrassed, too bad.”
“She made you feel bad and now she’s the victim?”
“No way.”- unionmom4
“She kept trying to shame you into doing what she wanted in front of everyone and you shut her down in front of everyone.”
“Why does she deserve a level of respect that she wasn’t capable of showing you?”- CrystalQueen3000
“If you’re going to make our business public, you don’t get to be mad when I make you stop.”-R3dmund
“If she’s going to publicly use the money to bully you into buying the dress she wants, then she needs to be prepared to have the money publicly given back.”- winsomebunny
“I’m so confused as to how anyone other than the bride and groom think they have any say in someone else’s wedding?”
“I’ve never understood that.”
“While your delivery may not have been the most respectful, neither was she about your wishes.”
“MIL complained in front of everyone, you responded.”
“Like your fiancé said, not a great moment, but an effective one.”- tosser9212
“However, I hope you don’t think that returning the money will get her to keep her opinions to herself.”
“I don’t know any of you, but given her behavior, it seems unlikely.”- C_Majuscula
“MIL was trying to embarrass you into giving in to the dress.”
“She just mad about you flipping the script on her. I love how fiancee criticized your actions but didn’t try to put you down for them without being an AH about it.”
“I don’t understand the phenomenon of people witnessing someone being an asshole, getting called out about their behavior, and blaming the person calling them out for embarrassing them.”
“It’s not on you that none of these people have the self-awareness to understand that their own behavior is what they should be embarrassed about.”
“As to the suggestion that you should have returned the money in private, she’s the one who decided to involve everyone else.”
“Where’s her discretion and tact?”- Akasgotu
“She made her plans for your wedding plans a public issue, and you publicly removed her assumed right to provide opinions.”- CatsEatGrass
“Well I don’t believe it was the best move in terms of maintaining a cordial relationship with a woman you will have a long life with.”
“But I revel in your take no sh*t attitude.”- Acceptable-Jelly-768
“You could have done it privately, had she voiced her concerns to YOU privately.”
“She didn’t, she kept going on a subject about which you had been clear.”
“She was trying to back you into agreeing with her PUBLICLY and got shot down, also publicly.”-BothReading1229
It’s curious enough why the OP’s soon-to-be MIL felt like she had any say in regards to the OP’s wedding dress.
What’s even more curious is why she felt it was appropriate to address this issue in a public setting.
Here’s hoping the OP and her future MIL can eventually reach an understanding, ideally in a private conversation this time.