Tag Archives: resentment

I am not into my mother-in-law

Dear globalcounselor,

I am a 45-year-old black professional woman, married to an engineering professor who is white. We have three beautiful children. My mother-in-law frequents our home all the time. my husband happens to be her favourite son. I find myself resenting her visits and not wanting to see her. I feel this heavy pain in my chest whenever he announces that mom is coming for dinner. I can’t seem to forget that when her son had first invited me home to dinner I was not impressed with her welcome and as he started to get serious about our relationship, she was besides herself. She tried everything in the book to break us up e.g. inviting other more “suitable”girls to dinner with the family hoping he would lose interest in his black girlfriend.  But we were in love and eloped.  Although she cannot come between us now, I  still carry a grudge towards her. I see her as a racist and I have a problem with racists. My husband has asked my forgiveness on his mother’s behalf because he told me flatly he can never turn his back on his mother and I should try to get over old feelings. I feel stuck.

Stuck.

Dear Stuck,

I have to agree with your husband’s advice. How heavy that burden of hatred, resentment, anger must be. You have carried it for far too long. Don’t you think it’s time to let it down?  To carry  around any of these negative values impacts you not your mother in law. Forgiveness is about choosing to free yourself from the past; your anger, resentment and dislike for your mother-in-law. These feelings you carry around are your own, your mother in law may be oblivious to them. They take away from your joy of life. Choose happiness and freedom for yourself by choosing to let go of your resentments and let love in, you will be a happier person and a happier wife for it.  If you need help, meditate and pray or seek professional help.

Stubborn Mule

Dear globalcounselor,

I have taken over chairing a community organization from a woman who had chaired it for about 10 years. She complained that she did all the work and that she did not want to be the chair anymore.

I was asked to chair and I graciously accepted but ever-since that day I have found resistance from the old chair. Whenever she gets a chance she lets me know how much I do not know. I feel she is trying to undermine me at every turn. She still comes into the office collects mail with her name and writes cheques without telling me. She insults me at every chance she gets. I feel very hurt. She  wants  me to be a copy cat of her  and I am not. My style is a little different I have tried to mend the fences to get into a dialogue with her but she refuses to talk to me. I feel so bad, what can I do?

So bad

Dear so bad,

You have done enough. Leave the rest to this person. From what you have said, it seems as if this past chair did not really want to give up her position. Sometimes people get too attached to positions and the privileges that go with that and find it hard to move on. In this case you have to let the hurt and discontent this woman feels gradually dissipate. There is nothing you can do for her. The more you feed it with your attention, the more that resentment will increase.

As I said before, you have done your part, the rest is up to her.