Advice for a woman with Aspergers dealing with monster-in-law?
I need some insight into the matter at hand, due to my inability to understand/get through it. I apologize in advance for its length.
I have Aspeger’s Syndrome (so people with knowledge of it will probably give me better advice), undiagnosed due to lack of money and I am severely agoraphobic (disabled from working, rarely leave the house).
When I first met my fiance, I wasn’t myself. I was drinking and doing stupid things in an attempt to cope with my horrible family. My parents are both addicts, who mentally abuse, manipulate, neglect and walk all over people – including their kids. This led to a lot of stupid things that I was doing while also being treated very poorly by my own father, who was also trying to con me into “taking care of him for the rest of my life.” I was getting drunk, attempting suicide, cutting and just making an idiot out of myself. Ironic, because this was the first time I had ever done really dabbled in alcohol and it made me very different from how I really am.
When I first met his mother, I had a bad feeling it wasn’t going to go well, probably because of my sensitivity to my grandmother (almost a clone of his mother) and my own manipulative mother. His mother is like the perfect mix of them both (minus the addiction and only the addiction). His mother is passive-aggressive, controlling (tried to steer our relationship how she wanted), manipulative, judgmental, nosy (has listened to our conversation and arguments), fake and above-all does not approve of me. With her son, on the other hand, she plays the religious angel, spoils him and thinks he can do no wrong. Any fault to her lies in someone else, besides him. Growing up, she controlled what he believed in, who his friends were, what he wore, and even chased him around a desert to stop him when she learned he wanted to have sex for the first time. This was NOT the first relationship she tried to control, she did it with his past few girlfriends, even going behind his back to control whether or not he talked to them. She manipulated him into spying on his father to see if she was being cheated on. And when it went sour, he got all the blame and it messed up his relationship with his father. After that he ended up looking for friendship in the wrong people, and without sharing too many details, was turned on after a mistake and went to prison. While in prison, his mother was literally the only person he talked to. When he got out after extremely good behavior, he found out that she lied about where he was for 2 years and no one knew he was even in prison. His own sister only visited him TWICE those whole two years, even though she lived almost next to the prison he was in.
When I met him, he had been out for only a few months. We moved into a house that they (his parents) owned that is next door to theirs (still currently here). Last year there was an incident where I didn’t say hi to her a few times, she waited for me to be alone and then came barging into the house yelling, ”(My name)!! I need to speak with you!” If you know anything about Asperger’s, you know that anything spontaneous can easily send our brains into a whirlwind. This was spontaneous AND intruding on boundaries, so I started laughing. Whether it was out of nervousness, fear or the fact that I immediately had a panic attack doesn’t really matter, because this only pissed her off more. She immediately launched herself into a lecture at me on how she didn’t approve of me, indirectly calling me a slut (her son was my FIRST), accusing me of only being with her son for money (he had just lost his job), you name it. At one point, when I mentioned married, she scoffed, laughed and said, “that isn’t going to happen.” Honestly, I don’t remember the whole thing, but it wasn’t pretty. This continued for at least a half an hour before he returned. Immediately when he returned, she tried to get him to go outside to talk to only her. I can only assume this was in an attempt to control him even further and make me out to be the “bad one.” That did not happen and they launched into a shouting battle. It ended, she left and we decided that living there wasn’t going to work. The next day when he was running errands, he visited his sister and his mother showed up and they both attacked him about me. His mother said I would “hold him back.”
From there we moved away and were staying with my father. This did not work out, we went through a short period of homelessness and ended up back here due to his probation and having no choice. We came back with the agreement that she would be respectful of boundaries, and also stay away from me. Let’s just say that that was working out for a year, but she has pulled a few tactics to “get him back” (I really don’t know how else to phrase it). I have caught her on a few occasions listening outside the house to our conversations, snooping around the house, or listening to our arguments. He tried to have a conversation with her last Christmas, suggesting that an apology letter would help to ease the tension. She said she would, but that obviously didn’t happen. She “explained” that the reason why treated me the way she did was because she “felt bad” that I didn’t have a mother, prayed for me every night, and just wanted to buy me stuff. Does that even make sense? How can you talk about praying and materialism while trying to project the blame onto someone else?
I try not to let it all bother me, but can’t help but find myself obsessing over it. It even bothers me when she buys him clothes; or when he goes to do his laundry and she folds it for him. I am very conflicted on whether or not it SHOULD bother me. She will randomly get him clothes and even before he met me, he asked her many times not to. Even going as far as to getting him boxers.. And she KNOWS I take care of putting away and organizing his laundry. I feel like it’s a power play. But my fiance hasn’t been able to say much, because she says she needed the washer and dryer and that’s why she folded them. They recently did work on the house we live in (kitchen, bathroom) and she even went so far as to picking out the rug she liked for the kitchen, the curtains for the shower and drapes for the windows! All things I think she should have no say over. The carpenter even said she was using him as an excuse to come-and-go in the house whenever she pleased. :/
Again, I am sorry for the extremely long passage, but thank you for taking the time and any advice is needed. I will try to take it without getting sensitive.
This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.