Mother-in-law is from hell

I really love my boyfriend but everything changes when his mother comes to stay, which she does once a year for a month. She is like a black hole, sucking all joy and energy out of the house - and out of my life.

I really love my boyfriend but everything changes when his mother comes to stay, which she does once a year for a month. She is like a black hole, sucking all joy and energy out of the house - and out of my life.

When she comes to stay my boyfriend changes completely, and so do I. He does his absolute best to get her approval and I try to annoy her as much as is humanly possible. I behave outrageously, saying and doing things I would not do or say usually. I just have to look at her and my eyes start bulging.

I call her "Harpic" because she is clean around the bend. At least, I think so. She says really stupid and untrue things about me and a few of these things have got back to me. I tried to approach her about this but she refused to discuss the matter. My boyfriend, the wimp, was too spineless to stand up to her.

Sister, you just have to look at her to know what the real problem is. She has a very small mouth and enormous teeth. You should see when she smiles. It's too horrible. I've attached a photograph so you can share my pain and better understand my predicament.

What can I do to make things better? You can see she's not a nice person, just from her teeth. But she's not worth losing my boyfriend over. Even though she's only here once a year, her ghost seems to hang around for months. It's tragic.

Going Insane, Industria

Yaaaaaa, sister, how could you do this to me? I had just eaten lunch when I looked at the photo and I had to fight to keep the food down.

She is, as you say, a frightening-looking woman. I do feel sorry for you, having to put up with her.

But the fact is that she is only around for one month out of 12 and if you really love your man, as you say you do, you will put up with her and her nonsense for his sake.

Instead of flushing dear Harpic out of your life, which must be very tempting, why not just grin and bear it for the sake of your man?

Try a new tactic: the more rude she is, the more polite you become; the more uptight she is, the more fun you become.

If that doesn't work, then just try to ignore her ways and don't take her bait. When she visits you, mark off the days until she departs on a calendar and you'll survive her parking her broomstick near you.

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