Ack.. no wonder my mil will never listen about her tank!

Angela_96

Member
I was in the middle of servicing the eheim to the mbuna tank and she called, when I said that I was going to have to do some daily water changes... She said in that big tank? I wouldn't fool with it... we had tanks back in the 70's and never did water changes, tested the water.. etc and didn't have any fish loss... WHY WHY WHY won't she get w/ the times???
Shes always wanting me to test her water w/ my kit then she does nothing to correct the problem, I basicly plan to just toss her water when I come over to my house so I don't waste my API soulution anymore...
I know what the prob is w/ my tank.. I added a huge pleco to my tank and 2 cichlids to my tank this weekend.. I didn't know the bioload was going to increase like that and put it through a minI cycle... (my values aren't even over .25) Then today when I went to do my waterchange I noticed my eheim wasn't putting out the waterflow like it should.. so I serviced it... (a month early but oh well its not like its a high maintence filter I enjoy the fact I have only opened the canister around 4 times since Jan counting when we bought it)...

She kills me with this though... "granny had 4 fish tanks w/ Angelfish and never tested the water" um.. I bet they didn't have test in the 70's.. and I bet her fish didn't last as long as they do now? (I didn' say that but I felt like it) She then said that she thought that ALL the fish had something wrong w/ them and all this maintence was put out by a conspiracy buy the companies... (seriously people! she said this) her and my FIL are always into some conspiracy theroy and its always wayyyyyy out there... this one really got my goat!

She wouldn't even try to comphrehend water changes by my husband who has a bachlors in bio/wildlife/eniroment/stuff??... who told her its all like the lake gets rain.... fresh water for the fish.. it was still a conspiracy... from now on I offically give up! I have been on to her about her tanks for months... w/ no luck at teaching her anything. I have successfully made my coworker a MTS club member... my mother and stepdad more aware of the nitrogen cycle, they now test their tanks, don't stuff them full, and do reg water changes.. they also don't impulse buy anymore at the fish stores...
So I have helped them.. but my MIL.. I give up..
 

luna

Member
If she refuses to see common sense, let alone reason, you can't let that woman keep fish. It's inhumane, and you should tell her so, then take the fish/tanks home with you.
 

Nags1965

Member
Perhaps you can print some info and take to her.. that way its not like you trying to tell her what to do..
 

COBettaCouple

Member
Oy! She sounds like nothing but frustration.
 

Nags1965

Member
COBettaCouple said:
Oy! She sounds like nothing but frustration.
LOL I was thinking the same thing.. but hated to be the one to say it
 

Allie

Member
COBettaCouple said:
Oy! She sounds like nothing but frustration.
ITA. I'd stop talking fish with her.
 
  • Thread Starter

Angela_96

Member
I actually feel guilty.. she had no hobbies at all since I have known her.. and my husband said she had tanks at one time and loved them.. and then every time she came over to my house she would stare at my tanks in ah so I bought her a tank... I didn't know that's how she would turn out w/ the fish...
 

COBettaCouple

Member
You can't feel guilty for her actions, especially since you've done everything you can (short of shooting her with a tranquilizer dart :rolleyes.
 

pamd

Member
Are you at liberty to go over to her house, toting a couple of buckets and changing the water? I hope it's not a lost cause and that your mother-in-law will accept your doing so.

In the 1970s and 1980s there was no widely known thing about water changes except for saltwater tanks, as far as I know. I can see why she's of the mindset, even though she's wrong. She just doesn't know and thinks an aquarium will "take care of itself." She's just innocently wrong. Those were the "good 'ol days" for her, when everyone had an aquarium and it was quite the style.

I know you've tried your best to educate her, but perhaps if you gently demonstrate, that will get through when she sees her fish are happier. Sorry, I just don't hate your MIL. She's just innocently ignorant, as far as I can tell. She just might come around, since she loved fish as a kid or young adult.
 
  • Thread Starter

Angela_96

Member
pamd said:
Are you at liberty to go over to her house, toting a couple of buckets and changing the water? I hope it's not a lost cause and that your mother-in-law will accept your doing so.

In the 1970s and 1980s there was no widely known thing about water changes except for saltwater tanks, as far as I know. I can see why she's of the mindset, even though she's wrong. She just doesn't know and thinks an aquarium will "take care of itself." She's just innocently wrong. Those were the "good 'ol days" for her, when everyone had an aquarium and it was quite the style.

I know you've tried your best to educate her, but perhaps if you gently demonstrate, that will get through when she sees her fish are happier. Sorry, I just don't hate your MIL. She's just innocently ignorant, as far as I can tell. She just might come around, since she loved fish as a kid or young adult.
I love my mil as if she is my own mother don't get me wrong..
This woman came from a family of 9 other children. Her mother which passed away last fall didn't even have running water in her house, not that it wasn't avalible to her or she couldn't afford it she refused to have it. She lived in a house w/ a coal stove and she didn't want electricity until about 4 years ago. My Mil is up in the times to the point she has always lived in a house like all of the rest of us, even w/ cell phones, internet... etc... but when it comes to get her to come to the ages its like hitting a brick wall.. it would take me doing the water changes for her. It took me coming over there to check the water every so often, I kept saying my the water is really warm before she finally got a thermometer a week later and found out the water was 90, and got rid of the heater, now the temp is a constant 77. She is also a 53 y/o woman that when my son that had reflux was a baby OMG I had a time when she would keep him. She refused to belive he needed the meds he was on, didn't hook up the apnea monitor on him. Basicly he wasn't aloud to stay with her until she got w/ the times for him.
 

sirdarksol

Member
This is a pretty common scenario. The idea was birthed by the fact that a tank that had a water change in the early 80's and before was far more likely to suffer die-off.
There are multiple reasons for this, but all involve the fact that a water change involved a complete water change/sterilization of the tank. The first reason is that there is a sudden change in water quality. After months of excessive nitrogen in the tank, the pH has likely dropped significantly, and has changed the percentage of water in the fishes' cells. Fresh water changes the pH instantly, and places significant osmotic stress on the fish.
Then there's the ultimate fish-killer, de-cycling. We all know how bad this is.

But faced with years of being conditioned to believe that old water is better (there's actually a term called "new tank syndrome," that would be used when describing to a new aquarist why it would be better to keep the old water in as long as possible), it's very difficult to explain to people that their fish could be so much happier and healthier if they did regular water changes.
 

purple_phoenix

Member
She'll surely learn that she's doing something wrong, if you leave her to do her own thing. Something's bound to happen at some point, if it hasn't already. And, why say that it's just some conspiracy theory, then keep sending you water to test? :S
 
  • Thread Starter

Angela_96

Member
Yea.. I have heard the term new tank syndrome, in several books I have read, and when she killed a few fish and I was told "take them back to the store for me, heres a sample of the water too they wanted" and my mil basicly got laughed at by the fishstore that knows me very well and said to tell her "new tank syndrome" I told them that I told her over and over not to ad fish to the tank, and she did it against my say so and this was the end results... Now a couple months later I don't know how but she has living fish (but they are hardy fish, guppies and 1 platy)


purple_phoenix said:
She'll surely learn that she's doing something wrong, if you leave her to do her own thing. Something's bound to happen at some point, if it hasn't already. And, why say that it's just some conspiracy theory, then keep sending you water to test? :S
I have tried every angle... even by telling her about my own problems w/ my tanks... like right now my daily water changes on my Mbuna tank over a .25 ammonia. That everyone has to deal w/ doing water changes over chemistry going off, and everyone has to do water changes period every couple of weeks anyways.

It kills me, I tell my husaband that I have to do daily water changes... he looks at me and I know what hes thinking... the fish get more attention than the cat (poor jinx she only weighs 30lbs) and good when you had fish 6 years ago he came home to an algae infested mess and did the changes (which I had no clue of what I was doing then) Luckily I gave it up until my younger son got fish obsessed, then I really got into it and I became a responsible fish keeper.
 

sirdarksol

Member
Sorry, I meant "New water syndrome" or something like that. It's a term that isn't in use anymore, because it's based on the idea that water changes are actually bad for your tank.
 
  • Thread Starter

Angela_96

Member
sirdarksol said:
Sorry, I meant "New water syndrome" or something like that. It's a term that isn't in use anymore, because it's based on the idea that water changes are actually bad for your tank.
That's beliveable from those days, my grandmother had tanks and she had a good story about "new water" killing her fish... but it was something that she wasn't used to. They moved from having well water to having city water and she didn't know about treating the water in the 80's and killed all of her fish w/ the first water change. She lives w/ my mother and she absoutly loves my mothers tanks, and my tanks at my house. On Christmas and my b-day she gave me money and said, I know its for your fish... lol just buy pretty ones.

My MIL though whew! they were using well water up until about 14 years ago also so the water wasn't clorinated, etc like it is today. So I could belive she would go on the "new water syndrome" I also know when I told her to only change 20 percent she said just 20? I thought you change the whole tank, no wonder I thought water changes were such a hassle... then I understood why she gave me strange looks when she came over and I was taking water out of the tanks and didn't take the fish too... I bet she thought I was taking it all w/o taking the fish... lol
She also has a friend at work that just "tops the tank off" w/ a 55 gallon full of guppies.. that never does water changes, and tells her to top her tank off.. so there's conflicting advice... but like I told her that's why people have plecos and other fish that live for years on end now. I just about fell over when I read the life expectancy of a well taken care of african cichlid and the plecos... I have some good buddies... they will last as long as the family cat!
 

COBettaCouple

Member
I wish she could understand the concept that in nature fish aren't living in a closed system but an aquarium is a closed system and water changes are crucial to make up for that. Water changes are as 'natural' as the fish being in water when it comes to an aquarium.
 
  • Thread Starter

Angela_96

Member
COBettaCouple said:
I wish she could understand the concept that in nature fish aren't living in a closed system but an aquarium is a closed system and water changes are crucial to make up for that. Water changes are as 'natural' as the fish being in water when it comes to an aquarium.
I think that's why I do 2 water changes at least a week in my tanks.. I feel guilty if I don't... like if I don't get to my cats box at a certain day (you know how a cat will knock you down to get in the box right after you clean it, I know bad comparison but its so true)...
My fish look so happy right after a water change I can't help but do water changes that often just to see them right after one. If people like her could grasp that concept.
 

COBettaCouple

Member
True.. the fish always seem to appreciate a cleaned tank, especially our Bettas.
 

Most photos, videos and links are disabled if you are not logged in.

Log in or register to view

Top Bottom