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Should we distance ourselves?

by Jon (follow)
Rating: 5/5

Should we distance ourselves?

My in laws are elderly and divorced. They never moved on from their relationship and both are miserable. They don't have any real hobbies or interests and when we have contact with them the experience is stressful due to emotional manipulation, judgement and negativity, neediness and both are jealous of what me and my husband are building for ourselves. Instead of being happy for us building our first home they talk about how they used to have and now don't have etc. they often cause dramas over what they can to get attention using lies to create situations to draw attention to themselves. My husband keeps them at a distance probably because over the years that is how he has learnt to deal with it but it also compounds the problem. He didn't make firm plans with them recently over Easter and they both refused to answer their phones or catch up as a result making him feel really upset. His mum actually switched her phone of for 4 days and he wasn't even sure she was ok. I am often caught up in the drama being blamed by them or him for being the problem but I'm just the meat in sandwich 🥪of the larger dysfunction. If I didn't tell him to be respectful and call back or see them occasionally than he wouldn't. Should I just give up trying and keep them at a distance? I talk to my family often so it doesn't seem right to not return calls etc. but Surely talking to people so elderly about the problem wouldn't change anything? When we do see them after not seeing them regularly the problem and drama is 100x worse. Would you distance yourself or take it in small doses or do you have another suggestion? Cutting them off entirely is off the table. Thanks

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