I despise my mother-in-law

24 Mar, 2024 - 00:03 0 Views
I despise my mother-in-law Mai Rebecca Chisamba

The Sunday Mail

Dear Amai, I hope I find you well. I am aged 26 and I am a mother of a two-year-old daughter. My husband is 35 and he was married before. He has two sons from his previous union.

I will forever regret marrying a divorcee. I am constantly compared to his ex-wife by most of his family members and even my hubby does that at times. I hear from the grapevine that their marriage was rocky but now some people want to give me the impression that it was rosy.

My mother-in-law is a troublemaker. She is constantly in touch with my husband’s former wife. However, I am told they were sworn enemies before. We stay with my stepchildren during the school holidays but my mother-in-law prefers to go and see the kids during the term so that she can stay for a day or two at this woman’s apartment. I no longer trust her and she has fallen out of favour with me.

She still accepts gifts and provisions from this woman. My husband does not see things the way I do; he thinks what is going on is normal. I already feel like opting out, and my parents are equally upset. Amai, please help.


I am fine. Thank you very much for reaching out to me. I would have greatly appreciated a longer backstory that gives details about how you get on with your spouse.

Are you, as a couple, in good books? I agree it is not fair for anyone to compare you to his ex-wife. You are different and that should be respected. I think most of the problems emanate from your husband’s lack of focus. His first marriage is dead and buried.

His only prized possessions from it are the children.

He and his people should let the ex-wife move on and be independent. He is the father of these two children, so he should tell his mother not to cause problems by preferring to go and see the kids when they are at their biological mother’s place.

If she wants to befriend his former wife, she should not use the kids as justification. You have a child together, who is equally important. I suggest you have a candid talk with your hubby and tell him how this is affecting you. You both need to go for professional counselling. Opting out should not be an option if things can be resolved.

Furthermore, most problems are coming from outside your marriage. This should alert you on what to focus on. I would be happy to hear from you again.


Am I a bad father?

Dear Amai, thank you very much for your Sunday Mail column. I have learnt a lot from it. I am a middle-aged man and my wife is in the same age bracket. We are both gainfully employed. She is a wonderful mother.  Our boys are aged eight and 10, and they are full of life. My wife plays games with the kids and helps them with their homework. As a father, I focus on provisions.

My spouse will be taking a business trip out of the country for a fortnight. When she broke the news that the boys would be staying with the househelp and me in her absence, they did not take it well.

They literally cried and the young one said I was boring. I am very upset. After all, I am their father and not a stranger. I even told my wife off because I think she has an influence on what transpired. How do I get these boys on the same page as me?


Hello writer, thank you for your communication and for supporting this platform.

Congratulations on having such a gifted spouse. While providing for your family is good, you have to be in the boys’ lives as well.

To them, you may be as distant as a stranger. Do not begrudge your wife; I do not think she would say anything to turn the kids against you. The secret is to emulate what your wife does.

Play games, take an interest in their schoolwork and above all, interact. These are some of the things that matter to them, especially in their formative years.

Shower your family with love and these crying episodes will be a thing of the past.

In all fairness, you are the one who should get on the same page as the boys. I wish you all the best.


Nephew crashed my car

I am a married woman and a mother of three beautiful children. Our marriage is normal; we have our ups and downs but we get on well. My husband has a roving job, and when he used to travel, I would use public transport to go to work and our kids would commute. Over the past 12 months, I saved enough money to buy a small car. This solved our transport problem. Last weekend, we went to church in my husband’s car and left his 20-year-old nephew at home. When we came back, we discovered that he had crashed into the gate, much to our shock.

He got into our bedroom and took the keys from the rail and tried to drive. We both blew our tops and my husband threatened to take him to the police but later decided to send him packing. His mother is my husband’s sister.

I do not know how he put it across to his mother. Initially, we had not made contact with auntie because we wanted to decide on the best way forward. To my surprise, his mother called me and asked me not to kill her son. She said she would sell her cattle to repair my car. She also made some uncouth remarks. I have since cut her off. How do I resolve this issue?


Greetings writer. Thank you for your letter. Well done for saving up and buying a car. This takes a lot of commitment and discipline. I am terribly sorry about the freak accident that happened. We thank God no one was killed or seriously injured.

Cars and gates can be replaced, although it is something that you had not budgeted for. I know auntie really pushed you into a corner but you did well not to further escalate tensions. Do not respond until the dust settles.

Do not dignify her confrontational approach. Put your heads together as a couple and see how best you can replace the damaged property. Take this as a learning curve. Always lock your keys away or travel with them. Last but not least, fight in the same corner as your husband. Be of good cheer, it shall be well. Keep me posted.

Feedback: beckychisamba@ gmail.com; 0771415474


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