Writing About Your Out-lawed In-Laws

Quite a stir going on over at Motherhood Uncensored yesterday! Always nice to see the asshats out and about from their little troll-holes in the woods. (Check out the comments if you aren’t sure what I mean.)

The discussion did have a major question come out of it though- is it acceptable to vent about your in-laws on your blog?

I am in a fairly unique position of getting along well with mine. My husband’s parents and brother and his family all live here in the same city, and we see them about once a week usually. Some of them do have their little quirks, but overall they are great people and I couldn’t have picked better as far as in-laws go. the ex’s parents are on vacation in Vegas right now, and I actually miss them!

For various reasons though, not everyone is so lucky. I’ve heard in-law stories that would make my annoyingly-straight hair curl. I’d probably be ready to vent to the world too if I had to spend time with some of those people. Everything from racism to bad taste to drug problems to favoritism, bad in-law stories abound. But is it ok for us to put out there to the world personal details of other people’s lives?

How would your MIL feel if she read your blog where you complained about getting a baby gift from a yard sale? Would your SIL be upset if she came across your rant about her partying and frequent overnight male visitors? How would you feel if you came across their blogs and saw this stuff written about YOU?

I am on the fence on this, a place I hate to be because let’s face it, splinters in the ass are just no fun. On one hand no one should have to censor their thoughts and constantly worry what will be brought up and held against them at the next family get-together. On the other, while what they don’t know won’t hurt them, what they find out, might. Family discord is bad enough. Getting between your husband and his family, no matter what the cause, is a whole ‘nother can of worms.

So how do you feel about this? Do you blog about your in-laws? Do you get along with them? Would you hesitate before hitting submit, or is all fair game in the world of blogging?

(Be sure to vote in my first weekly poll over to the right!)

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29 thoughts on “Writing About Your Out-lawed In-Laws

  1. Hmmmm, that is a good one. When I started my blog, my husband asked if I emailed the link to his family like I did to mine and I looked at him and said “What are you crazy? Where do you think I get most of my material!!” Thus far though, I have not blogged about my mother-out-law… but believe me when I say I could get a Pulitzer if I did. Oprah would be calling me instantly and Dr. Phil would set up camp in my front yard to do an intervention.
    I guess the reason I have not blogged about her yet is 1) my husband occasionally reads my blog and I wouldn’t want to revisit the “your mother is trying to poison me” fight again. 2)She has been underground for some time now so I am waiting for her to pounce in the next month or two…maybe then I will be angry enough with her attempts on my life that I will share it with my 30 daily fans!
    It is best if a blogger uses the “my friend has this mother-out-law” angle. Trust me.


  2. It seems like people wouldn’t complain about the content of a site called Motherhood Uncensored.

    I complained about my in-laws on my site, then went back awhile later and took those posts down. I feel like I had the right to say anything I wanted on my blog–but that rights have consequences, and I wasn’t willing to risk the potential consequences. I did leave up a post about my father-in-law, because he and my husband are estranged (FIL’s choice) and I don’t care if he does find my post. But even though I can’t stand my MIL, I did care if she found posts about her.


  3. I blog about my MIL all the time. I call her The Dragon. She knows my opinion of her, as does my husband – he told his sister and she told her Mum, so that was me outed, and if anything we get on better for knowing where we stand! They’re the only people I figure it would hurt, if they didn’t already know my feelings, which they do, so it’s irrelevant! Mind you, she’s not very internet savvy anyway but if she did find I’d actually blogged about her, she might not like it. But I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. No love lost between us anyway.


  4. I don’t blog about my MIL because she reads my blog. I do talk about my FIL and his wife (my husbands step-mom) once in a while though. I guess I’m not to worried about them finding it because they don’t really use the internet. And most of the time when I do talk about my FIL it’s when he does things like tell me that surrogacy is wrong because I’m doing it for a gay couple. So, you know. Act like a jackass and then people will talk about you like you’re one.


  5. Teetering on the brink of bloghood as I am 😉 this is something I have mulled over quiet a bit recently. My conclusion is that I would have to limit all and any references to in laws to the positive, or at worst only mildly negative references. I have overheard my SIL (brother’s wife) have a huge rant about my Mom – and I will tell you, however valid her reasons may have been in her eyes – it hurts to hear someone tear a strip off someone you love. The only in law I have issues around is my MIL, and truthfully by some people’s standards, they are not major issues at all. Nonetheless she has hurt me deeply and probably without even realizing it. Tempting as it may be for me to work through that by venting on a blog – the fear of hurting her feelings (despite any issues I have, I do love her), or hurting my husband’s feelings or those of his sisters, means I don’t think I could bring myself to do it in case that they would stumble across it. It’s not worth it to me. It comes into that whole arena of being able to vent and complain all you like about someone in your own family, but as soon as someone outside that family unit (which let’s face it even though you’re married into a family – you’re still an ‘outsider’ to some degree), it’s like a declaration of some sort of war!


  6. I do not blog about my inlaws. I have vented, via emails to two VERY trusted friends about the more serious things bothering me, and, on occasion, friends-only livejournal entries when I felt the need to vent or explode. My SIL actually showed my MIL my myspace page unbeknownst to me, and while the page is public, I did consider it a bit of an invasion of my privacy. But there was nothing incriminating or bad there or anything. That was just something I would never do because I figure if someone has a webpage of any sort, they’ll clue their family in if they want the family to see it.

    I guess I am kind of on the fence about it as well. I will definitely vent if/when I feel the need to, but it’s not going to be where it can be found by any of them. My husband is not overly close to his family, so I don’t think my venting would put him in an awkward position if it was justified. However, if I vented, I would do my best not to pass personal judgements on any of them.

    I certainly would not want to come across any of their blogs to see them offering up to the world at large the things I do or don’t do. If they were venting about some way I wronged them or something I did, that’s one thing. But to just spread my business to have something to talk about? Not having any of that.


  7. I have blogged about my MIL and some of my husband’s family (and he posts on my blog sometimes) and I know they read it; I gave his whole family the url when our son was sick. His mom, who is an asshole of epic proportions, and some of his siblings have taken umbrage at some of the things written but at the end of the day: Don’t be an asshole and I won’t blog about you being an asshole.


  8. You hav nice inlaws?? Lucky woman!

    I’d love to share some of my feelings with my inlaws. But, being the fairly sane person that I am (at least I try to be, anyway), I use my blog as a venting place because it’s just not appropriate for me to do, although they have deserved a good talking to (and a bit more) on more than one occasion.

    It wouldn’t be my proudest moments if my in-laws found my blog, but I’ve heard from my best friend (yes, they vented about me to my best friend) what they’ve said about me, SO… It’s hard to feel bad for more than 2 secs.


  9. Still giggling over asshats…composing myself….OK.
    I’m also one of the lucky ones that gets along with my in-laws but I’m just so non-confrontational I don’t know if I could ever write about them. MIL really loves her computer and I would be nervous all the time that she’d find my blog. But, I am a wimp and I say more power to those who have the cajones to write about the “nitty gritty.”
    I’m completely behind “don’t be an asshole and I won’t blog about you being an asshole…” 😉


  10. “Don’t be an asshole and I won’t blog about you being an asshole.” Love it.

    I blog about my outlaws all the time. They don’t know about my blog but I don’t really care if they do find it. I say most of what I blog to them directly. I’m lucky that I get a long with my in-laws (for the most part) but that’s also because I’m pretty open with them about what I’m feeling and they respect that. Likewise, I respect that they’re open about their feelings. Doesn’t make all the problems go away but at least I’m not second guessing them.


  11. My in-laws hate me. They make no secret of it. I quit caring a while ago because I knew it wasn’t going to change. I know neither one of my in-laws own or know how to use a computer but my SIL does so the worst it’s ever gotten on my blog is that I have acknowledged that they hate me and do not have a relationship with my kids and that I feel this is unfair to my husband. There are SO many times I want to write about the stupid things they do, t would make for comical and interesting reading, but while I don’t care what they think, I don’t want to drag thehusband into it.

    I am so glad you get along with yours..you are very lucky.


  12. Gosh Sara I think that is a tough one. Unfortunately I have posted my blog URL to everyone. So even though I don’t think my In-laws have ever been to my site, the one time I do say something, they will read it and WW3 would escalate. I would feel sad if I did come across a blog of a friend or relative who was complaining about me. I know that you are able to say whatever you want and no one can stop you on the internet, for the sake of family peace I refrain from In-law bashing!


  13. I get along well with my in-laws, therefore no juicy stories! I could write a freaking book about my ex in laws though! Thank gawd I don’t have to deal with them EVER AGAIN!


  14. My In Laws ARE assholes. I call them assholes. But on my blogspot, only once. I believe though, back in my myspace blogging days, I did actually blog about my MIL’s asshole specifically.

    I’m not skeered if they were to somehow acquire the knowledge of what a blog is and someone, by a miracle I’m sure, find my blog. for one, I’ve only blogged about them once. And every damn bit was true so I don’t care. I want her to know she’s an asshole because I really think she’s clueless that is she a huge, gaping asshole.

    In fact, if the spirit of the dilemma of do you call them assholes or not, I may go and post my own blog calling mine assholes.


  15. Since I know that my MIL reads my blog all the time, I wouldn’t write about them. We have certainly had our run ins in the past, but I don’t think I could write about them on my blog. But, that’s just me, and my blog has always been public knowledge with my family. Maybe I’d feel differently if it were a secret from my family.


  16. I don’t understand my in-laws and that’ about all I’ll say… they don’t know I have a blog – they probably don’t know what a blog is – but I still don’t blog about them. I am too afraid of hurting someone’s feelings.


  17. Interesting question. I have not yet blogged about my in-laws, and they read my blog. It’s a pity, because they are such great material! I’m sure they will come up in one way or another, but I’ll have to be quite careful about it.


  18. oh hell yeah Inlaws are fair game in my book. Then again I am one of those really blunt people in the world who will tell Matt your mom was acting like a bitch tonite.


  19. I don’t bitch about my in-laws (even though I certainly could!), since I know that my Hubby (along with all his friends and co-workers) read my blog. Even tho what I do say online is VERY mild and non-specific for the most part, Hubby still sometimes makes passive-aggressive comments about what I’ve written. My response is always, “If you don’t like it….then don’t read it!” It’s just that too many IRL people read me these days. Hmmm…I need to start a new SECRET blog where I can actually write about the nitty-gritty!


  20. I’m one of the lucky ones. I love my in-laws, and see them atleast once a week. I’ve only been blogging since January, and haven’t written much about them yet. But it’s all good….so far. In the future, I might write about a minor annoyance if need be. But if the situation was really that bad, I would probably write about it anonymously. Actually as it is now, I have only let a few choice family members read my blog anyway, so I can “filter” a bit.

    BTW, love your blog. Have been reading for a bit, but this is my first comment.


  21. I really like your blog and I think this is a great question. I get along with my in-laws, and honestly, my own parents would be a better source for material. I have a more anonymous blog for family issues, because I really don’t need to cause any more strife (but I do need to vent).


  22. If you are in my life, it is fair game to show up on my blog. And everyone knows that.

    Don’t give me cause to make fun of you, and I won’t. Well, maybe.

    If you don’t like it, don’t read. So far, everyone is in agreement, even when I poke fun.

    Well, except for my mother. But she’s a nutjob.


  23. I reserve all in-law griping to other peoples’ comment sections (sorry, though I offer reciprocal use at my place). I get the same satisfaction of getting it out there, but my in-laws will never track it. I know my mil and sil read my blog, but they don’t read any others so they’ll never know that I think they are crazy.
    Look for future anonymous post in HBM’s basement about insane, crazy-making in-laws who insult my cooking to my face with a British accent and then smile….that’ll be me, my friends! At Christmas my father-in-law suggested that he had been alarmed that my apple pie might have too much cinnamon in it, but was relieved to tell me it was alright – this is what I’m up against people!
    I so wish they didn’t read/know about my blog, but cat is out of bag!


  24. I think it’s perfectly fine to blog about your in laws OR family members as long as you do so anonymousely … unless of course you could care less what they think.


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