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Unwanted - advice how to deal?

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Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby riogirl71 » Tue Sep 14, 2010 5:55 pm

I need help on dealing with my mother on unwanted advice. She believes she knows everything about child raising after raising me (I am 39) and only me and not dealing with any babies/toddlers since. She believes ludicrous old wive's tales and her way is always better than mine. She is coming to visit for 2 1/2 weeks. I love my mom but she drives me insane. Our son is a very well adjusted 2 yo. I don't know how to stop her smart ass remarks or dirty looks about everything. She refuses to even change one diaper so it is not like she is this awesome involved grandma. She just wants to be right and prove me wrong. I get frustrated having to defend every move I make with our son. She calls me overprotective when she would probably leave him playing in the tub alone. I need help in stopping her before it gets bad... Any advice?
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby SomedayMaybe » Tue Sep 14, 2010 9:28 pm

Sounds like the relationship between my mother-in-law and I. Ick! I'm sorry that you're having to go through all of this, Rio. Raising children is hard enough as it is. I can't imagine having a parent/in-law constantly criticizing the way I raise my children. The way I see it. . . children don't come with manuals. Simply raise your child in the most morally acceptable way possible. Do what you feel is good for you AND your child and try to ignore your mother's words. So long as your child isn't being hurt (which is the most important part), then disregard your mother's words. . . if you can anyways. Good luck, hun!
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby riogirl71 » Tue Sep 14, 2010 10:05 pm

Thank you someday! For some reason that behavior is easier to accept in someone other than your own mom! I will try my best to not let it get to me!
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby angelaezra » Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:09 pm

Rio - I think you should have a talk with your mom. Sometimes parents feel like they are doing and saying the right thing but it ends up hurting us in the end. I think sometimes our parents do things and say things but do not realize they are being overly critical. My father-in-law is that way so my DH just tells him when he thinks he has overstepped his bounds. It usually works in our favor believe it or not. So I would simply talk with your mom and tell her how you feel but of course be respectful. You might be pleasantly surprised what the outcome might be. Remember, most of the time our parents only view us as their children and sometimes forget we are adults with our own way of doing things.

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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby riogirl71 » Mon Sep 20, 2010 4:33 pm

Thank you Angela. I have tried to talk to her, I have even emailed her so that I could let her know that I love her, I appreciate everything she did for me in raising me but now it is my turn to raise my son and thing are different now than they were 40 years ago. When she criticizes me it is not a simple "you should do this instead" it is that and then beating up a dead horse. And if I say please let me raise my son the way I want to, she will say I am too sensitive and won't accept criticism and bad mouths me to all her friends. Example is she wanted my then 5 mo old to sleep with her on her bed full of pillows and blankets. I said no, he needs to sleep without blankets and pillows or fluffy bed because of SIDS, she insisted I put him belly down to sleep because according to her "babies after 3 months who can turn their heads don't die of SIDS and you slept on your belly all of your infancy and you never died" so you can see what I am dealing with here? She just wants to be right and does not believe me. She had a cow because I asked her to break up some round cookies because they were perfect cholking hazard size, I asked nicely and what I got was "it is amazing you never died because I did all of this with you, he is not going to choke on these balls" or when she insisted on giving him stuf with honey and raw eggs when he was 5 mos old and I would not let her. I have sent her studies that I read and base my beliefs in but she refuses to accept them. I just need help with telling her to stop effectively and not argue back and forth. Normally you would think a heart to heart would work...
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby Wondercat » Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:09 pm

I hear you. Fortunately as long as I am calm enough when I say it my mom is pretty good about letting go. Sometimes she isn't and I deal with the subsequent eye rolling, etc. I get the whole "I did X with you and you never died" quite a lot. She tried the same thing with the back vs. tummy sleeping. My older sister let my mom get her way with her two kids so they slept on their tummies - and admittedly they were fine. I just gently told my mom that I didn't want to do that. Maybe the less studies and test results you send her the better. She might take it better if you base it on intuition and just said "I'm his mom and this is how it's going to be done." Not a popular option, but also consider picking and choosing on some battles. In point of fact, none of us DID die despite our moms evidently doing their level best to kill us by today's standards :).
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby angelaezra » Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:12 pm

Ok, if you have tried that approach without any luck, is there someone who can be a mediator (or something similar) that she respects that could sit down with the both of you to explain each other’s point of view? I ask this because our parents have a hard time realizing we are adults now and every time they see us, they only see us as their kids who need guidance. She might realize that there is a problem if someone else is telling her the same thing. Your examples are incredible though! You definitely have an uphill battle. One thing that I would say is that society has learned from its mistakes and has changed protocols because of previous fatalities. I would then explain that she only got lucky! But, back to the mediator, maybe, an aunt, family friend, etc but it has to be someone who she respects and can tell her the truth without her becoming too defensive.

Angela
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2nd FET 6/09-BFN
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby JG_379 » Fri Sep 24, 2010 9:28 pm

I"m not sure of the right answer, but I thought i'd commiserate! My mom is much the same way. She mentions the stomach sleeping and all the other horrible things that they used to do with children 30 years ago and refuses to accept that times have changed and things have changed quite a bit. My mom came home from the hospital with me on her lap in the car for goodness sakes! Anyway, even while I was trying to get pregnant and through our infertility and miscarriages, my mom said insensitive things like "when you're a mother, you'll understand" and she gave my sister a mother's day gift right in front of me at my house right after I had a miscarriage. Couldn't she at least be discreet??? Anyway, now that the babies are here, I get the same things that you do and my mom also badmouths me to her friends and family. One thing though is that most people know not to take her seriously. You might be surprised at what they think of the things that your mom says. Since my mom's attitude does not end with me, everyone pretty much knows that she's full of it :-). As far as the stomach sleeping, this is what quieted my mom:

After my twins were born, they spent two weeks in the NICU. While in the NICU, the nurses put them on their bellies some of the time to sleep, they said it helps food digest better and the babies actually sleep more deeply on their stomachs. So deeply, in fact, that the reason that SIDS is attributed to stomach sleeping is because some babies sleep so deeply that they forget to breathe. The let them sleep like this in the NICU only because they were hooked up to all kinds of monitors that would tell them in a split second if they weren't breathing, etc and they told us to NEVER do it at home! So, when my mom argued with me about the stomach sleeping, I told her that she's right, that babies like it better, but because they do forget to breathe because they're so comfortable, that's why we're not supposed to do it. That shut her up and now she tells anyone that's expecting why they should sleep on their backs.

Another funny thing. My mom works with a woman that has two younger children, so every time I do something, my mom compares me to this lady and says "so and so said she did that at first too, but then she realized it was total crap and went back to the other way". I feel like she's always using this woman to prove her point and I wonder if she's just making up stories about her just to try and prove her points. My mom argued with me about buying a changing table, using nursery water, waiting to start solids, putting cereal in the bottles, etc. It never ends. I'm not looking forward to the coming years! My babies are only 6 months and i'm sure I have a lot of unwanted advice ahead of me!
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby angelaezra » Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:24 am

Riogirl – I had my maternity tour this past weekend and I immediately thought of you because the nurse educator was talking about the different classes that the hospital offers for grandparents. She said that this class strictly focuses on the changes of raising a baby now compared to years ago when we were born. She said that in the beginning she hears “I don’t know why my daughter thought I should take this class because I raised her and she didn’t die or turn out bad”. But, she says towards the end they are singing a different tune because they realize they have a lot to learn about the dangers that have been discovered over the years, especially the reasoning behind the changes. The educator also said it seems to be received better coming from someone other than their child. So maybe suggesting a class would be helpful even though your baby is already here. It may be a struggle getting her there but I think it could be worth it in the end for the both of you!

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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby riogirl71 » Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:15 pm

Wow Angela I sure wish they offered something like that here. I will check, I know my hospital didn't.

I have a couple of sentences in mind, something like "Thank you mom but it is my turn to raise a child now" or "ok, Oma" (Oma was my granny and my mom hated when my granny told her what to do with me).

The one thing I don't yet know how to handle is my mom is all about what you didn't do right. I see that starting with my son. No, I asked for red, RED! Oh you pipi in the potty but can you poopoo in the potty? Oh you can count to ten but you can't count to 20? So I still need a sentence or something to curb that horrible behavior she has that always made me feel like I never did anything right. Problem is she never apologizes for anything nor does she take any criticism so it is hard to deal with someone you can't talk to. When I had my son she came to visit and he was 3 mos old, I had to have my gallbladder out after my c sec so I was hurting bad. I also had a senior dog who was my best friend for 14 years who started not being able to control his bowels and would poop in the house. Well my mom came to "help" she never lifted a finger, if I asked her for something she would say "I am 65 you go get it" I would say "I had 2 surgeries and I don't feel good please help me" she would not. The she would complain about the house being messy! Then she would cry saying my life is sh*** when I said I was very happy just really busy with the baby and 3 dogs. She wanted me to kill my best friend because he pooped in the house sometimes but was not in any pain and very happy laying there!! :cry: I would never kill my best friend for my convinience. Anyway, she can be very cruel and I need a way to protect myself and my son from this. She can be so cool but lately she wishes not to. :( She gets here Thursday for 3 weeks! Wish me luck!
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby angelaezra » Tue Sep 28, 2010 8:06 pm

riogirl71 wrote:Wow Angela I sure wish they offered something like that here. I will check, I know my hospital didn't.

I have a couple of sentences in mind, something like "Thank you mom but it is my turn to raise a child now" or "ok, Oma" (Oma was my granny and my mom hated when my granny told her what to do with me).

The one thing I don't yet know how to handle is my mom is all about what you didn't do right. I see that starting with my son. No, I asked for red, RED! Oh you pipi in the potty but can you poopoo in the potty? Oh you can count to ten but you can't count to 20? So I still need a sentence or something to curb that horrible behavior she has that always made me feel like I never did anything right. Problem is she never apologizes for anything nor does she take any criticism so it is hard to deal with someone you can't talk to. When I had my son she came to visit and he was 3 mos old, I had to have my gallbladder out after my c sec so I was hurting bad. I also had a senior dog who was my best friend for 14 years who started not being able to control his bowels and would poop in the house. Well my mom came to "help" she never lifted a finger, if I asked her for something she would say "I am 65 you go get it" I would say "I had 2 surgeries and I don't feel good please help me" she would not. The she would complain about the house being messy! Then she would cry saying my life is sh*** when I said I was very happy just really busy with the baby and 3 dogs. She wanted me to kill my best friend because he pooped in the house sometimes but was not in any pain and very happy laying there!! :cry: I would never kill my best friend for my convinience. Anyway, she can be very cruel and I need a way to protect myself and my son from this. She can be so cool but lately she wishes not to. :( She gets here Thursday for 3 weeks! Wish me luck!


Oh, I am so sorry that you have to deal with that treatment. You seem like such a good person and I am glad that you will be a buffer between your son and your mother. I am praying for you for this upcoming visit!
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1 miscarriage 2002 (nat)
1 ectopic pregnancy 2006 (nat)
1st IVF 10/08-BFP twins/misc-6 1/2 wks & stillbirth 21 wks
2nd FET 6/09-BFN
3rd IVF 2010-April-BFP - DD born 12/7/10

Lost Ashley Nicole Thomas at 21 weeks
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby SDtrying » Wed Sep 29, 2010 6:19 am

So here's my 2 cents for what it's worth. My basic rule of thumb--

1st categorize the person you are dealing with
A) One who historically seems interested in your emotional needs and understands the rules of logic
B) One who historically ignores your emotional needs and doesn't seem to respond to rational arguments

if the person falls into category A
-my advice would be a heartfelt effort to communicate your needs and improve the relationship

if the person falls into category B
-draw some very strict emotional boundaries with these people (even if they are a relative). save your breath on trying to change them, only use your breath to protect your own needs. ie "Mom I hear what you are saying, but this is what I am choosing to do and I'm just trying to get it done. I'd rather not have the conversation now about whose way is right or wrong now." or "Mom, can we discuss this later, i just need to get the baby fed/sleeping/bathed and this is the way i need it done." or "this is the way i'd like your help" "this is what works for me perhaps it worked differently for your or others, but this is system I am using- I'm really not up to discuss this now"
basically the system is-- shut down the conflict but without get bulldozed by people with strong opinions.

these things of course are always easier said than done! good luck
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby riogirl71 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:07 pm

Angela - thank for your prayers - I will need them and I hope we all get along and have fun!

SDtrying - wow - wonderful super advice - I love it! Can I just write those on a post it and stick them to my forehead and point to them when my mom starts ? :lol:

I also thought of "my parenting style is not up for negotiation" I need to stay away from trying to defend myself. Something about moms brings up this little kid inside of me trying to get acceptance... :shock:
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Re: Unwanted - advice how to deal?

Postby SDtrying » Thu Sep 30, 2010 4:39 am

You'll have to let us know how it goes. My mom can totally send me back 25 years :)
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