The Annoying Mom Advice Column: Fashion Faux Pas

Hi Michelle,

I was hoping you could help me with a dilemma I am having with my two teenage daughters and my mother-in-law. We are a hardworking family and both myself and my husband have full-time jobs. My girls are 15 and 17 and they love spending time with their grandmother. My mother-in-law has a beautiful apartment in Manhattan and shops in the finest stores. She was always a hardworking career woman and was very successful in what she did. She lost her husband a few years ago and was left a very large inheritance. She buys the best of everything and doesn’t think twice about the cost. She has earned the lifestyle that she now lives and I say good for her.

We do the best we can for our family and take care of our daughters and give them all they need. We know that style and fashion is very important to our girls being that these are the teenage years and we shop in the stores that are suitable to our means.

We have more expenses and responsibilities bringing up our family and things can be very costly. When my girls visit their grandma, they had mentioned that she asks them all kind of questions about their attire. Is it this designer or that brand? It makes my girls feel very uncomfortable. It makes them feel that their clothing is not good enough. They told me that they want to shop in the stores that grandma shops in because her clothes look better. We cannot shop in the same kind of stores like my mother-in-law. I had mentioned this to my husband and he said that I should just let it go.

I would like to just let it go, however it is making my girls self conscious. I need some advice on how to handle this situation because it is making me very uncomfortable, especially knowing how uncomfortable it is making my daughters feel.

—Please Help

Dear Please Help,

I can understand why and how you feel the way you do. Please know that your mother-in-law has no bad intentions on hurting anyone. Sometimes people talk and say things without thinking about what they are saying and what effect it has on others. This is the situation here.

Your mother-in-law is in a different stage and chapter of her life right now. She is doing things that are making her happy and fulfilled in more ways than one for her state of mind, well-being and happiness. Your girls need to realize this and know that she has no idea on how she he is making them feel. She adores her grandchildren as you said and it would hurt her to know that this is how she is making her granddaughters feel.

Let your girls know that when this happens, they need to overlook it because there are no negative intentions in mind. Let your girls know that they should be proud of who they are and on how they conduct themselves. Enjoy the time that you spend together with you mother-in-law and family. Yes,

I agree with your husband just let it go.

Michelle Weinberger is the creator of the brand and author of the parenting book Mom You’re So Annoying!, based on the many hats a mom wears and how often she’s told how annoying she is. She is also mom to a 29-year-old daughter and a 26-year-old son. Visit to learn more. To reach out to Michelle with a question or
comment, email

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