FI and I attended a family wedding this weekend. It was a lovely wedding and it's always great spending time with his family. Most of them have been extremely welcoming to me. Now I should preface the remainder of this by saying that FMIL does not have a great relationship with her family in general (including FI). I have always known this, and I've witnessed a number of little embarrassing moments (like her speaking ad nauseum about baby FI when she's been drinking) but never anything big. Until this wedding...
First, after her sister (bride's mother) finished her toast, FMIL leaps to her feet and begins declaiming to all and sundry about how next month would have been their parents sixtieth anniversary (FI's grandfather passed away over five years ago) and what a wonderful example of wedded bliss they had been. Really inappropriate on her part to do that. And then the dancing breaks out, and FMIL goes nuts. It was clear that she had been drinking too much and she is breaking it down like she's in a club. She knocks over the flower girl, falls into several people, myself included. It was awful. And if family gossip is to be believed, this is not the first time something like this has happened.
Luckily, FFIL returned to the reception shortly after this display and escorted FMIL away; they left shortly after. I just had no idea what to do because she gets very upset if anyone other than her husband tries to handle her. I was so thankful that FI had also stepped outside when this was happening. His relationship with his mom is already strained and every time she pulls something like this, he pulls further away. And its getting very upsetting for me too. I come from a (despite the divorced parents) close knit family and I very much want to like his mother. Things like her wedding behavior make it so difficult.
And I think what makes me feel even worse is that I love the rest of his family. FFIL is awesome, his aunts are sweethearts, first cousins are hilarious, second cousins are brilliant, third cousins are warm and welcoming, great aunts are adorable. It makes me feel like I'm 'picking sides' against FMIL since she doesn't get along with them. But I think I need to stop feeling guilty about that (I have an amazing capacity to feel guilt) and just be glad that I like everyone else.
I guess this is more of a vent then anything else. The FILs live on the opposite coast from us, so it's not like we see them very often. I guess I just always thought that when I got married that I would at least like the FILs. And I've always wanted FI to have a better relationship with his mother. I think I saw for the first time how extreme her behavior can be, so it may be time to accept that closeness will not be there for either of us.
Sorry about the giant block of text- my iPad doesn't do paragraphs on TK.