My in-laws continued their streak of being late every damn time they come to visit. The message is basically, "We assume that you don't have anything better to do than sit around and wait for us." We have cut short activities so many times in order to meet them, only to have them be late. This is a pain in the ass with a two-year-old who just wants to be out running around, not cooped up at home, and it happens on a weekly basis. Last time I asked my husband to talk to them about it, and of course he forgot. Tonight they called 20 minutes before they were supposed to arrive and I could tell they were saying they were going to be late, and he was just like, "Ok." FFS, it's not ok and we just discussed that last weekend!
We were supposed to go out to eat, but our son was hungry before they got here because they were so late. So he ate a snack beforehand, and then he didn't want to sit at the restaurant and eat with us. He just wanted to run around, which was sort of fine because we were outside, but not fine in the sense that there were other people around trying to enjoy an evening out and with the hip and leg pain I've been having I don't want to be running after him all evening. At some point when I am up running after him they all decide to order dessert, which makes a ton of sense. Yes, let's prolong the evening out when the person they are ostensibly here to visit obviously doesn't want to be there. And of course they order the one dessert that takes extra time. Finally my husband decides to take him home (we had walked without a stroller, I can't really carry him that distance right now, and he wouldn't have gone voluntarily), the kid throws my husband's glasses onto the ground in the middle of the street with cars approaching, and my husband twists his knee in his frantic dive to grab them without anyone or anything getting run over. So I march over, grab my son and start walking away with my husband trailing behind me. I had some choice things to say about him and his mom. If I have to hear that woman joke about how much more fun it is to be the grandparent than the parent (seriously, is that joke so funny or clever that she needs to say it multiple times in one evening, and literally every time we see them?), I will lose my shit. Lady, I just spent the evening running after a restless child you said you were coming to spend time with, and you feel the need to point out to me multiple times how nice it is to be able to walk away? When I am at that exact point that every parent occasionally gets to of wishing I could walk away? And I'm supposed to react like you are sooo clever? Just NO.
I feel like this always happens. I try to be nice and go along, and I can keep it up for a while, maybe a few months, and then my pent up irritation gets the better of me. But I feel like the other option is for me to be constantly saying no and telling them what I need, which makes me a high-maintenance pain. I know it isn't right to expect people to be mind-readers, but my parents would have seen the kid running around all evening and refusing to sit still and they would have said, "Let's skip dessert, this doesn't look like fun for you." Actually, we wouldn't have been in that situation with my parents— they would have offered to babysit so my husband and I could have a quiet meal to ourselves, instead of expecting us to do extra work so they could have a quiet meal in the same general vicinity as their grandchild. Is it so much to ask that my in-laws ever think about someone else's needs, ever?
I know this stuff is pretty mild compared to what some others have to deal with in their families and in-laws. I am totally willing to admit that a good percentage of my annoyance with them is about my own issues and my own not handling situations with them well. But even so, does anyone have any advice about how I should manage this relationship in the future so I don't end up so annoyed? Should I just make myself scarce when they are around? Should I start saying no when what they want to do doesn't work for me (i.e., constantly?), and not give a fuck about what they think of me?