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This or That: Caught by Your Mother-in-Law or Your Boss?

Out on a Sunday afternoon stroll and shopping trip with a friend, you find yourself complaining about the stress you’re having at work and the issues you and your husband are having with your monster-in-law. You guys are having a good laugh — you're giving your best impressions, even mimicking your boss's constant hand motions. But just as you're exiting a store, your mood turns from jovial to terrified. Would it be worse if …

This: Your mother-in-law appears with pursed lips right in front of you? She starts to make small talk, but her expression makes it clear that she heard every word; this will make the weekly dinners far worse than usual.

Or …

That: Your boss comes up from behind you with her arms crossed and a stern look on her face? When you say hello, she gives a nod and says that she looks forward to seeing you in her office on Monday morning.


Join The Conversation
rashell rashell 9 years
mother in law. you are stuck with her (hopefully) forever. boss... eh.
emalove emalove 9 years
I can handle my mother-in-law...I'd die if my boss caught me!!! Definitely worse.
michelle-c42934 michelle-c42934 9 years
I don't have a mother in law or a boss, but if I did, I'd prefer for my boss to catch me. If it was that bad you can quit your job easier than your mother in law.
geebers geebers 9 years
At first glance, in theory, having your boss hear you would be worse because you are putting your job in jeopardy. But seeing as how saying something hurtful about your future family could really be a lifetime of resentment and a job can be changed - going to have to say I would rather get caught by my boss.
fortunate-fool fortunate-fool 9 years
I love my future mother in law and would be so upset if she heard me saying anything negative about her because she's been wonderful to me. I'd much rather have my boss overhear.
vmruby vmruby 9 years
I can always find another job but i can't replace my mother-in-law....
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
Definitely it would be worse if it were my MIL. I love her and I would feel absolutely disgusting if I hurt her like that. With my boss, it would be uncomfortable but there aren't actually bosses who believe that every employee speaks nothing but roses about them are there...?
looseseal looseseal 9 years
I have neither boss nor mother-in-law right now, so both of these imaginary people can kiss my ass. Hypothetically speaking, I agree with syako, it's easier to get a new boss than to get a new mother-in-law. In theory, marriage is more permanent than any job. You could get a new job or eventually go over your immediate boss' head and surpass the boss in rank. And bosses have to be more careful about what they do in retaliation because they could get sued, or get complaints to HR, if it's a big company. Also, bosses at least have to try and maintain a facade of fairness and professionalism. Whereas with mother-in-laws, it's practically their job to be petty and record in minute detail everything their daughter-in-laws do wrong and hold it against them FOREVER. Even though I never had a monster-in-law of my own and will never have one if the universe is kind to me, I learn from other people's experiences. Hee.
bengalspice bengalspice 9 years
I don't have anything bad to say about my boyfriend's mom ... my mom is the problem in my life. Good thing I adore my boss ... I would just die if she heard me say anything negative about her. She's really nice and has guided me so much in my career ... I would hate to anger her with something out of context.
hottpink hottpink 9 years
I dislike my mother-in-law with a passion, so I wouldn't care one bit if she overheard me talking about her! I know....I'm bad :)
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 9 years
Mother-in-law. Personal life, I can do damage control. Not so much professionally.
syako syako 9 years
Um, boss definitely. Considering I plan on being in my marriage until I die, having to live with an m.i.l. that's pissed about me would not be fun. I can get a new job and new boss a lot easier than a new mother in law.
brittanyk brittanyk 9 years
It would almost be nice if this happened with my future mother in law, then maybe we could sit down and discuss our issues with each other :P I wouldn't want this to happen with my boss. That would be horrible. I can see my future mom in law being far more forgiving than a boss would be.
sugarbritches sugarbritches 9 years
Both would suck, but you spend most of your time at work so that would be horrible to not be able to get away. If it was the in-law I would try to start a conversation by saying how I felt like a total a-hole and try and choke down some humble pie...good reminder that words that aren't spoke don't have to be eaten.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
I think my boss could cause more hell for me than a mother in law any day!
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