questionswho wants to share their story of a nightmare…

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I should add that MIL is widowed and in pretty good health, but has always been a non-stop talker. In my family it is the worst possible offense to interrupt someone when they are speaking, but among my in-laws, he who speaks the loudest and the most is the winner. We get along wonderfully most days, but she talks over me constantly. I even bought a t-shirt that says "Excuse me. I didn't hear you. I was still talking." but she doesn't realize that it's about HER!

Since we have been here she has made nasty little comments about:

1.) DS needs a shower - 20+ comments within a couple of hours. He had taken a shower! I even sniffed him! She just giggled and repeated her comments several times.

2.) DS/fiance arguing- This was the first evening. NBD. The next day MIL asked fiance to help with an email problem and he discovered that she had sent an email to numerous folks describing the "altercation."

3.) Every flipflop on the floor is a personal insult to her so my time is spent cleaning!

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When I was younger, my family took a vacation to Virginia Beach in October. I got stung by a jellyfish, and I'm apparently highly allergic. I had to go to the hospital, and then was sent back to the hotel and told not to leave for a few extra days. My family loved the 'extended vacation', I however was bedridden. I still refuse to swim in any ocean I fear there may be jellyfish in....including Myrtle Beach, where I saw several dead ones on the shore. It's a shame, because even in October, I love swimming in the ocean.

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@belyndag: 'Cool' is subjective, 'all of us being questioned or going to jail till thy get it all sorted out' is much more cut & dried.
My house, my rules: no weed. It's not a matter of cool, it's a matter of integrity.
Do the right thing. I may not be popular, but nobody questions where I stand. If weed was legal, no problem, but it's not.

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Sorry to hear about your vacation, that really sucks. I went to the OBX a couple weeks ago with family (8 adults, 2 kids) and on our way my car started overheating, so we had to turn around and bring it home (it had a leak and it was Sunday - my car is less than 3 yrs old, I was SO mad) and we had to switch vehicles. So we didn't get there until 9:30pm when we should have been there by 4:30pm. Then the next morning my Mom wakes up with what sounds like your DH has. Hers lasted 4 full days, she didn't leave the house until Friday. We get up Sunday to come home and yes, I wake up with the same thing. At least we didn't have any of the drama that you are being tortured with, so hang in there!! I really hope it gets better!!

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@belyndag: Have you considered telling her (in a hushed tone) - "I don't know if you know this, but you packed your bad attitude, instead of your good attitude, maybe you can go pick up a good one?" - or something along those lines. :)

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Well, no illness on our worst trip, but we had a flat tire on our pop-up camper on the trip over, then discovered that the power didn't work at our campsite after getting the darn thing set up at the camp ground. We figured we could rough it for one night so we went ahead and drove over to visit with my brother and his family until quite late, then returned to crawl into our beds in the dark. Within a few minutes my daughter started screaming hysterically. After a mad dash for working flashlights we found that her bunk was filled with thousands and thousands of ants! We had set up the camper right on an ant bed!

It was far too late to move, we couldn't get rid of the ants, that were spreading throughout the camper, daughter was covered in bites, so we drug ourselves back to my brother's rented condo and woke them all up in the wee hours so we could sleep on their floor for the night.

Miserable trip, especially for my little girl!

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And to answer your question, my parents packed a 15yr old me & 8yr old twins in a camper. Then went from southern CA to MO, and stopped at damn near every small town on the way there and back. The truck broke down in NM, and we were stuck there, in that damned camper, for 2 days in the middle of summer. Then, once we finally got home, everyone went inside, we locked the camper... except my 8yr old sister had fallen asleep - and got locked in the camper for a while (not abusively long)... she hates that vacation too.

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Sorry to hear that your "RELAXING" vacation has been anything but.

I don't claim medical expertise, but I'm surprised that your DH has not improved after 3 days of treatment. I once had a really bad sinus infection (hallucinating and completely lost my sense of balance before I was finally diagnosed), but it began to turn around almost immediately when I started on antibiotics. Are DH's sinuses draining yet? (Gross, I know.) Consider picking up a neti pot; chain drugstores will have a plastic version, which work fine and may get things moving. Also, is there a medical practitioner you can call back home for advice if you need to?

Good luck. I hope this whole episode becomes a funny story you can laugh about in years to come: "Remember that time grandma was broadcasting our quarrels to the entire planet?!"

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I have a few pretty good stories. Thinking back now they don't seem too bad, but at the time they were pretty traumatic.

First one was when I was about 15. It was shortly after my grandma was moved into a nursing home and her house was still being cleaned out and her stuff taken care of. My Mom had been making trips as often as she could and rotating the kid she took with her. Not so much a vacation but still a big trip and as a kid it's pretty much the same. My turn happened to be during xmas break. I don't know if you've ever been to Nebraska in the middle of winter, but I would definitely recommend against it. We flew out xmas day to get a cheaper flight. In general I don't travel very well, and to top things off I was fighting off a bit of a cold. The flight went ok, but I'd learned not to eat before flying so was starved by the time we landed. Still being xmas but by now around 10pm nothing was open at all.
Continued.

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After searching for an hour finally found a24hr walgreens and got a delightful dinner of hotdogs and ricearoni.About 2hrs later we had to return to walgreens for water after finding out I was unable to stumic the highly clorinated tap water.By the next morning I had developed a severe ear infection, since it was the day after xmas and in an unfamiliar town it was near impossible to find a doctor. Ultimately I ended up having to go to the emergancy room for treatment.(The only time I've ever been to the hospital)They gave me antiboitics and some strong painkillers.I spent the rest of the trip, and the few remaining days of break after returning home misrible and drugged up.

The second good horrible vacation stroy was a few year after that on a camping trip. To start things off right we crammed 6people and all the camping gear into a 5seater car and drove about 3hrs to the lake.Once we got there the camp grounds we were planing to stay at were compleatly full and too late to turn back

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@havocsback: Good point! As you can see, I have now moved on to doing my Wooting! It's what I WANT TO DO!!!!! They can fend for themselves!

(Of course, I got up before dawn in order to do this, so we'll see how my newfound resolution holds up once everyone is clamoring for my help.)

Now, however, I have discovered a NEW problem! First of all, I have to admit that, despite any rumors to the contrary, I am not cool. Not by any stretch of the imagination. I grew up in a teetotal household and, although I drink now, I still feel a bit guilty even doing that. When I got up in the wee hours today I knocked over future SIL's backpack and out came several containers of, well, it ain't parsley. Now, do I ignore this (and the pipe and some other things I don't recognize - I told you I'm not cool!), or do I sit him and DD down quietly and tell them how angry I am that they brought this stuff to MY vacation, etc.? Argh!!!!! (redux)

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That was NOT cool of them! I would talk to daughter after a day or so, tell her what you found~and explain you do not want these things anywhere around you. Could that have been why they were fighting? Maybe she thouhgt it was stupid of him to bring the stuff.

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@belyndag: Maybe the whole crew should toke up and break out whatever there is to drink, might mellow everyone out. Of course I'm not serious, sort of.
Sorry to hear about your not so relaxing vacation, I have a family member that snarks on people like that. I don't know if she realizes what she is doing or not, but it's no fun when people are politely (or not) insulting each other. Good luck.

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@belyndag: The next time she interrupts, lean over & gently place your index finger over her lips with an "Excuse me, but MY lips were still moving so I'm going to help you keep yours still until mine are finished." She will be shocked that you've dared to do this. You can also say "interrupting people while they're still speaking is a bad habit. Don't you agree?" Every time she interrupts, raise your index finger & look at her say "I'm not finished with my sentence, wait your turn. Remember The Finger!"
When she makes her other comments, say "...and your point is?" Let it hang in the air. Look at her directly & MAKE HER UNCOMFORTABLE. You'll have to do this constantly, but she'll get the point.
Slacker Pot Head Dude is a first class tool. Cool has nothing to do with his being being a self important ass. IF DD is partaking or encouraging it, shame on her for not having more respect for her family. This is a glimpse of the future :( It won't get better if you don't make a fist.

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@thumperchick: LOL! I would be happy to tell her that if I could ONLY GET A WORD IN EDGEWISE!!!!

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so we picked a random logging road and found a place that was good enough and looked like it had been used as a campsite before. We couldn't have a campfire but at least we had a camp stove so dinner was hot.By the time we had the tents set up it was getting dark, it was a warm clear night so we decided that the rain flies werent necessary.And I bet you called it, in the middle of the night it starts to rain.But not just a sprinkle, full on pouring rain, within minutes there is water pooling in the bottom of the tents. Apparently boys can sleep through anything, including being completely drenched. It was up to 2 of us, with some small help from one other still sleepy/disoriented person with a flashlight, to get the rain flies on in comlete dark.

We made it through the night, got a real campsite the next day, got everything dried out and remained dry the 2 other nights we stayed. The trip recovered pretty well after the initial terribleness, maybe there's still hope for your trip too!

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This one time, at band camp, I was in the cabin next door to a girl who played the flute. Couldn't sleep a wink all week.

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@belyndag: Well, it is what you make it sometimes. How did YOUR vacation become THEIR vacation, unless YOU let it happen? Hate to make it sound this way, and of course this doesn't factor in the illness, but this much is a fact: People will only do to you what YOU let them do.
Now, stop doing things that don't involve the sick, and the world will likely keep moving.

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@xdavex: LOL! I wonder what everyone would think if they find me toking on the balcony when they finally haul themselves out of bed!

Well, my limited experience with this stuff showed me that it just makes me paranoid so there is no reason to do that and add to this lovely little trip.

I woke up DH and told him and he thinks we should keep quiet until we all get home. He's probably right, especially since MIL would hear anything we discuss (as I noted above).

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To everyone who responded on the issue of the, er, substance found in DD's fiance's backpack, I thank you all for letting me know that it's ok to NOT be cool with this.

After I posted my rant this morning, DH and I talked about it and I agreed to let him handle it for now. He took the bag into DDF's room, woke him up, and told him to take it to his car and NEVER bring that stuff around our family again. He also told him we would talk more about it later. DDF took the bag and was gone for a while. DH found him sitting in his car crying. They had a long talk. All is not forgiven and this isn't over, but we know this young man's family history and his current efforts to seek help, so we think we can work with him on this. He has tried to apologize to me several times and I just nod and tell him we will talk after vacation. I am preparing the things I need to say and planning to use this opportunity to deal with several issues. DD knows about everything and will get a talk, too.

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@gigi889: I suspect daughter is probably, um, partaking as well. Maybe not, but she is entranced with this young man (for some reason I cannot fathom) so who knows. What is REALLY pi**ing me off is that he is currently out of work (long story) and neither of them seem to have any money. We sponsored this trip and DH even gave them spending money while they're here. But he has money to spend on THIS and on the various equipment, as well? Double argh!

If MIL were not with us I would drag his sorry a** out of bed right now and do some serious chewing. Bu knowing that anything we do will be broadcast is making me grit my teeth for now.

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Another note about MIL, she has been nothing but pleasant and I love her dearly, it's just the way she comments on everything. "Your kids didn't pick up behind themselves, but I guess that's not unusual. Teehee." "Your son needs a shower. Is he sitting on MY bed? When did he last have a shower? He needs a shower....." (He had just HAD a shower and smelled just fine, btw.) Same comments about everyone else, always followed by "teehee." Then she holds forth about two other family members who just blab to everyone about everything. DH and I look at each other and grit our teeth. We consider her the town cryer! When we were buying our current house, we got calls from his siblings in other states congratulating us before the ink was dry. MIL had driven by the new house, took pictures and sent them to everyone before we even had a chance to mention it.

(Sigh)

I just need to switch to decaff to get through this trip.

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(warning this is long. the vacation was good, but the travelling to and back was horrid)
Several years ago my wife and I flew to the Mexican Riviera to meet up with some family for vacation. Our flight route down was home->Chicago(O'Hare)->Mexico City->Ixtapa, Mexico. Flight back was Ixtapa->Houston->Newark->home. This was February.
We were supposed to get the first flight of the morning from our home airport to Chicago, something like 7:30 or 8am. We were finishing our packing the night before, and the phone rang at midnight. Automated call from the airline telling us our flight was cancelled that morning. I had to call the airline back to talk to a customer service person to reschedule. I spent 2 hours on the phone before we eventually managed to re-book everything 24 hours out. Thankfully the hotel was underbooked and didn't mind changing our room reservation out 24 hours as well.
Following morning we make it to O'Hare OK. Unfortunately we have no pilot (cont'd)

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@lparsons42: (cont'd) No pilot to fly us to Mexico City. Pilot is apparently delayed coming in from Washington DC. We wait in the O'Hare terminal for an hour or more until pilot arrives. Flight to Mexico City is uneventful but very late; our flight to Ixtapa had already left before we were on the ground and it was the last of the night (and of course we hadn't made it through customs yet at at that point).
Airline admitted fault and put us up in the hotel attached to the airport for the night. They also paid for dinner that night and breakfast the following morning, and put us on the first flight that morning to Ixtapa. Nonetheless we were effectively 36 hours late compared to our original schedule.
It didn't get much better on the way back, either. Our flight to Houston was OK but we got there and were informed Newark was in a full ground stop due to weather, so we couldn't leave Houston. We milled around the terminal for a couple hours waiting for OK to board (cont'd)

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@lparsons42: (cont'd) when we landed in Newark our flight home - last of the night - had already left (well, it was supposed to have left. it was actually cancelled). Found that out while sitting on the tarmac in Newark where we were delayed further waiting for a gate. Airline was, at least, nice enough to open the bathrooms on the plane for us and come through with water service while waiting for a gate.
We got in to the terminal and were told to come back in the morning, they would fly us home on the first flight in the morning. We found a cheap hotel with free shuttle service (national chain, don't remember the name) and stayed there. Hotel was a nightmare; front desk guy who also drove the shuttle was on drugs and thought everything that was wrong (like the door to our room that didn't work right, or the broken alarm clock, or the lamp in the room that had to be plugged in / unplugged to turn on/off, or the overfull shuttle) was hilarious. He drove like a maniac (cont'd)

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@lparsons42: (cont'd) went back to the airport the following morning and found our morning flight had been cancelled as well. Airline said they might not fly to our home airport at all that day due to the airline backlog from the previous day's ground stop. Best they could do was fly us to an airport ~2 hours away by car, and we had 15 minutes to get to that flight. We took that opportunity and ran like crazy through the airport to catch that flight. Took a one-way rental car from that airport to get back to our airport and our car. Our luggage came in another day or so later.
Did learn one useful thing on the return, though. We could fly to the other airport because that flight was on a turboprop. Props can take off in a cross-wind, jets cannot - flight to home airport was only available by small regional jet. All the jet traffic had to queue for the two main parallel runways, the props could use the alternate.

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@havocsback: I'm the same way. My husband doesn't have a problem with it, but respects my views. His daughter does too. Her house she has her own rules, but my house my rules. And certainly not on a family vacation in unknown locations. That is completely unacceptable. I wouldn't invite them back.

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@lavikinga: LOL! I should probably try that. Now that I am calmer I should explain that I truly love this lady and she is generally a very kind person. She's done remarkably well despite being going through some terrible years, and has always been there for us when we need her. I guess we all have foibles we don't see. Her tendancy to interrupt and overtalk are family legend, and I suspect that there is a diagnosis just waiting to happen. The snarky criticisms seem new to me, or at least more pronounced. Earlier today she asked, "If Tommy is really losing weight, why did he eat two orders of fries?" I kept calm and answered, "Because he cut down from eating four orders."

At some point I really need to just sit her down and explain about the interrupting, as kindly as I can. I think I could stand the critical comments (which I suppose comes with being a MIL) if it weren't for my nerves being frayed by never being allowed to finish a sentence.

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@ginawoot: Thanks for the feedback on DH and his illness. I'm afraid a neti pot won't do much good as he isn't really congested (strange, I know). Last night he finally perked up enough to move out of the bedroom and actually walked out to the beach with us so things are finally looking up. Of course, today is our last full day here so he's not getting much out of this trip.

Slightly off-topic, my personal preference for dealing with congestion is Sudacare Shower Soothers. Significantly less gross than a neti pot, and definitely soothing once you get past the smell.

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I can't top your story. Good luck, and I would have a long talk with DD soon. It sounds like rocky roads ahead. JM2C :)

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For an interrupting MIL, find a time when you can tell the interrupting cow knock knock joke (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyAniSKkAiE). Then whenever she interrupts just say "moo" very softly and continue your sentence.