Top 10 Signs of a Meddling Mother-in-Law

We have all heard stories of mother-in-laws who drive their daughter-in-laws crazy. But the worst kind of mother-in-law is one who meddles in her son's marriage. Being able to sniff out meddling mother-in-laws is one way to confront the problem and make sure it does not get in the way of your relationship. Here discover the top 10 signs that you have a meddling mother-in-law on your hands:

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She tries to take over your wedding.

Woman arguing with in-laws
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Anyone who has seen the movie Monster In Law knows what we’re talking about here. This is a MIL who mistakes her son’s wedding for her own. If she’s asking to pick out everything from the main course to your wedding dress, then you know you have problems.

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She thinks she’s your B.F.F.

Actually, she knows she’s not your B.F.F. but she acts as though she is or she could be. She calls you all the time and offers advice (read: criticism) on everything from the way you wear your hair to your cooking. Think Marie Barone on Everybody Loves Raymond.

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She wants to join you on the honeymoon.

A meddling mother in law hates the thought of her little boy sharing a vacation – or even a fun date – with another woman. So, she gets all Oedipal on you guys and tries to get invited on what was originally meant to be romantic getaways for the two of you. Perhaps, she even wants to join you on your honeymoon.

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She starts arguments between you and your husband.

We all put our foot in our mouths once in a while, so don’t be surprised if every mother-in-law, even the best of them, starts one fight between her son and her daughter-in-law during the first days of their marriage. But a meddling mother-in-law will consistently start fights. She’ll do it by bringing up past events or subjects that have always been hot-button issues between the two of you. She takes advantages of your weaknesses.

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She cleans your house and does your laundry.

This is a tricky one. On the surface, this seems like a good deed. After all, your mother-in-law is helping you complete household chores. With some mother-in-laws, that is exactly what is happening; she is there to help. But with others, there are ulterior motives – like going through your things or helping to criticize your housekeeping abilities. You’ll know if your MIL is one of the latter types if she makes snide comments or you catch her snooping.

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She negotiates with you for her son’s time.

Meddling mother-in-laws fail to realize that their sons are married and that their wives get first dibs on their time now. Instead, they go straight to their daughter-in-laws to make up schedules and demand a certain amount of time with their son. Some of them want tons of alone time with their little boy. Or worse they want you there, too. She fails to realize there is no negotiation. You are the wife, so you get the time. Period.

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She lays on the guilt.

Skillful mother-in-laws will get you to feel guilty about things you didn’t even do. The guilt will get you every time ​so that they manipulate your decisions. You were going to move to California, but your MIL made you feel guilty enough to keep you closer to home. You were going to spend the holidays with your side of the family, but your MIL guilted you into staying with her.

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She treats your husband like he’s still a baby.

When your MIL is still wiping your son’s face or buying his clothes, including his boxers, you know you’re in trouble. There’s a difference between being a good mom and treating an adult man like he’s a little boy. Watch out for MILs who brag about how they still have to pack their son’s lunch, even as he treks off to work in the real world, or slept in the same bed with junior until he was 16. It’s too weird, and it’s a problem you must nip in the bud with your spouse.

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She dictates your life.

If your husband puts too much stock into his mother’s opinion or turns to her before he turns to you, then you could have a meddling mother-in-law on your hands. If her opinion is more important to your husband, he could be swayed into making decisions that affect your relationship based on his mother’s desires. This is particularly dangerous because it could get in the way of your marriage.

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She wants to move in with you.

Family having lunch at dining room table
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There’s no question that you are dealing with a meddling mother-in-law if she is doing all she can to move into your home with the two of you. She can’t accept that her son is married. And she wants to be in the middle of your marriage 24-seven. This is the worst case scenario, and you might just have to run and hide.