Mother-in-Law Furious After Pregnant Woman Refuses to Let Her Touch Belly

Gillian Sisley

Should in-laws be exceptions to boundaries or rules?

When a person is experiencing pregnancy, their body goes through a lot of uncomfortable changes that they cannot control. In general, there are plenty of unpleasant side effects to being pregnant.

With that said, there are also a lot of joys that come along with pregnancy. Family members in particular may be especially excited about a newborn baby coming into the family. But what is a person to do when a family member is a little too excited and crosses boundaries?

This sort of situation was highlighted in a recent online post in which a mother-in-law ignores her pregnant daughter-in-law's boundaries around touching her belly, and massive family conflict ensues.

Should in-laws be exceptions to boundaries or rules?

An online post published on September 23rd, reported on by Catherine Ferris from Newsweek, has gone viral with 19,000 upvotes and close to 800 comments.

The post begins with the author explaining that she isn't exactly comfortable with being touched. To add to this, ever since she got pregnant, her mother-in-law and sister-in-law have been touching her belly constantly without asking first.

The author adds the context of this being the first baby she is having with her husband, and ever since she married him she's had boundary issues with her in-laws. She said it's not at all uncommon for her husband's parents to overstep boundaries that the couple has set.

Her mother-in-law's insistence on touching her pregnant belly is no exception. The couple have directly asked her to not touch the author's belly, but rarely is that boundary respected. The situation only escalated at the author's recent baby shower, which resulted in a massive family argument.

People's physical boundaries and comfort level should always be respected.

The author explains that while everyone was eating cake, her mother-in-law was talking to a relative when she reached out and touched the author's stomach. The author immediately removed her hand and said, 'No, no, you know I've told you not to touch without asking first. You know how to ask, don't you? It's easy!'

The author not only recognises that she spoke in a condescending tone, but she actually clarifies that she did so on purpose. Her mother-in-law later approached her and said she 'did not appreciate being spoken to like a child'.

The author replied that the mother-in-law touching her belly without permission after being asked not to a million times is 'kid behaviour' so she just 'called her out on it'. The author's father-in-law has since asked her to apologise to his wife, but she refuses to do so.

What do you think? Was the author fully within her right to speak to her mother-in-law in a condescending tone after her boundaries were disrespected time and time again? Or is it never appropriate to speak in such a disrespectful way to one's in-law, and the author should absolutely apologise?

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