or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Anyone have parents that don't show much interest in your kids?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Anyone have parents that don't show much interest in your kids? - Page 3

post #41 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrittneyMarie View Post
my mil was so excited when i was pregnant, but she never visits and she lives 10 min away. shes dissappointed because i wont let her babysit. hello! bf'ing in progress! and they have a gazillion cats in their house to boot.
Just curious what breastfeeding has to do with babysitting? I breastfed my DD until she was almost 3 and people were able to spend time with her from the very beginning.

At first my in-laws would come over and hold her while I took a nice long hot shower by myself upstairs. We'd often have tea until she nursed and then they'd care for her (most of the time she fell asleep while I nursed her). We started that when she was 4 or 5 weeks old. Then they'd take her out for a 30 to 60 minute walk around the neighborhood starting at 4 or 5 months. It was around then DH and I started dropping her off with a bottle of pumped breastmilk and going for lunch for an hour or so.

Also, if you care about cats (which doesn't make any sense unless your kid's allergic), why couldn't they babysit at your house?
post #42 of 61
Haven't read all the replies, but, yes, we have "grand"parents who show little interest in our kids. It hurts my heart more than words can express. I treasure my grandmother and the time I spent with her as a kid really made a positive difference in my childhood.

So, no advice, but hoping things either improve or get easier to live with...
post #43 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trinitty View Post
Oceanswimmer,

I feel for you. We are raising our daughter in a fashion similar to what you did, and I can imagine being in your situation years down the road. My poor DH can't buy soap without a pamplet from me... and it will be something I will have to be aware of as my DD grows-up.

All I can offer is that perhaps she is anticipating a flood of information and suggestions from you, and maybe she really wants to own this herself? To be in her own headspace?

Perhaps she is very sensitive to suggestions and feels pressured or infringed upon when she hears them?

Perhaps she doesn't want it to appear to her DH that you are influencing her more than he?

Becoming a mother is the most transformative and deeply personal thing that has happened in my life, and I really wanted to keep it between myself and my DH, despite the fact that my mom is a nurse and raised four children.... that was hers, this is mine, you know?

I share your horror over that procedure that I cannot even name, and I pray that she does as well. Maybe her DH wants to do it and she is desperate to have it NOT appear that she is just listening to you, and feels this way herself? I know my DH automatically rejects things from my parents, and if a suggestion appeared to be coming from them, it would doom the issue.

I have been in a similar situation with family, and I had to accept that after I made myself clear, short of physically grabbing the child and running away, there was NOTHING I could do to stop it from happening because it is a legal act. I had to let it go.

She KNOWS that she can turn to you for a suggestion or an opinion, I would just back off and shower her with affection and presents and a listening ear.

Trin.
Thank you, Trinnity! I really appreciate your positive suggestions, because I really felt lost and not able to figure out what would 'work'......y'know?
It is possible she does feel overwhelmed with choices, and needs time to sort through all the input they are facing.
It is entirely possible she wants to own the process and feels that my input gets between her husband and herself. I guess I'm surprised b/c she was 'there' watching closely when her little sister was born, and asked 1,001 questions...the memory she mentioned in our phone call (the recent call to me when she screamed and cried and had a tantrum....was very negative.)
I am surprised by the hostility, though. That's what made me wonder if there were other issues, old ones, that maybe she needed to clear up so we could move forward.
I will take your good advice and keep the little gifts coming who knows? It certainly won't hurt!
I am so grateful for your kind thoughtfulness and support. Hearing this from other daughters who have had similar experiences is very helpful, since I have no idea how my actions could come across. Again, it's so confusing b/c my other daughter assures me it's not me - but I absolutely hear what you're saying, since not all mothers have the same view of how they want to 'do' parenting, and neither do all daughters....to each her own! As I wrote to her, my wish is for a blissful experience and a happy outcome, regardless of her choices, which are okay (except the circ) with me. I had not .considered how her hubby might feel, as his emails are 'hey- you are sending books? Great! I'm looking forward to them!' --Could be he's seething and is just being polite...oops.

Gratefully and with hope for the future,
Ocean_Swimmer
post #44 of 61
Here is the thing that gets me.

Some of these uninterested grandparents, and those who are just off doing their own thing, well, they have the right to do what they want of course. However, the day will come when they are older and expect their adult kids to help them. I think that they will be in for a shock when the adult kids and grandkids don't have time for them or feel no obligation to them.

I think that, barring toxic/abusive situations, family should help family, within reason, if they can.
post #45 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by JL83 View Post
My parents are like this. But I blame my sister. My parents were pretty normal parents and instead of gently educating them on how she was going to parent (AP) she would flip out at them every time they tried anything.

It was pretty ridiculous. She'd be eating and my nephew would give a tiny fuss and my dad would offer to walk him around so she could finish eating. (Please note: he didn't insist, but he'd offer) and that would spark a 15 minute lecture about not ignoring new born early hunger signs. While she was right, the way she did it was really off putting. She refused to teach her son not to rip leaves off plants instead insisting that my parents could either have wrecked house plants or none at all in their own home.

So they backed off. She has the second grandchild as well and my parents gave up. NOTHING they did was right. Nothing.

It's taken me 3 years of reassuring them that I won't bite their heads off for redirecting my DD for them to start interacting with her. I'm not talking about yelling at her, but things like asking her not to jump on the couch. Both my other sisters have told my parents that it's ridiculous for them to have couches and grandkids if the couches can't be jumped on.




Good grief!


It is one thing to allow your kids to tear up your own furniture. But, it is so rude to think that other people have to allow your kids to tear up theirs.
post #46 of 61
I have a hard time figuring out if I am mis-interpreting based on my own baggage, but my parents don't seem especially interested in my kids. They do have a tight and close relationship with my sister's sons, and I see a lot of interest in my brother's daughter. Granted, we live far away from them, but I feel like we are usually the ones to initiate interactions between my parents and the kids. Once they are interacting, my parents engage in kindly exchanges with the kids, but it reminds me of the difference between how my mom was with us (loved us and was interested in us) and the kids she babysat (was kind to them, and cared about them, but didn't really love them or have all that much interest in them beyond her limited role in their care).

I don't know. So hard to tell because I've got my own baggage, but my dw seems to pick up on it too.

I do feel most badly for my ds. He adores my mom, and my mom has a somewhat obvious preference for my dd. This resulted in a really awful exchange between her and my ds this summer (which I talked about at the time a bit on here), which ended up in us taking a break from our interactions with her for a few months. We're now talking again a bit, but I still feel pretty upset when I think about what happened and her response to my ds.
post #47 of 61
This is a big part of why I no longer have a relationship with my mom. It's one thing to ignore me but don't ignore my kids.

I found myself constantly pushing my kids on her. She would hold them for a minute or two, only after I picked the child up and put him on her lap so it would've been rude for her not to. She'd do the whole baby-talk thing with them, and then put them down. She didn't care about their milestones, she never asked about them, fawned over them, boasted about them, or wanted to babysit them. Philosophically, she professed to believe in AP, but the one time I got her to babysit for me, she let my baby cry it out alone in a crib!!! She let him cry for 45 minutes when she could easily have just called me, and when holding him and walking him around didn't help, she just put him in the crib to cry! He wasn't quite himself for a couple days after that.

Anyway. My dad. (My parents are divorced.) My dad is more affectionate towards the kids and totally wants to play with them and stuff when they are there in person, but we only see him about once a year or so, since he lives on the other side of the country, and he makes no effort to develop a relationship with them otherwise. Also he doesn't send them cards or anything. He sends money for Christmas, which is sweet-- I buy something for them and make sure to make a point that it is from Grandpa. I like to think that he would have more of a relationship with them if we lived closer, or if they were older. I don't know though.

My dad's mom, my grandma, totally loves the kids though, and dotes on them. That's nice.

And luckily, my MIL and FIL are totally doting on the kids. They buy them stuff all the time just because they love them and saw it and wanted to spoil them-- even though they don't have much money. I roll my eyes but I love it, too. They are proud of all of their grandkids equally and their various personalities and abilities. They really love the kids and love to babysit, even though it's kind of inconvenient for them, what with my MIL's disability.

It just hurts the most that my mom seems like she could hardly care less about my children. It's seems to be an extension of how she feels about me. Just cold and unaffected, unmoved.

Hugs to everyone!
post #48 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrittneyMarie View Post
my mil was so excited when i was pregnant, but she never visits and she lives 10 min away. shes dissappointed because i wont let her babysit. hello! bf'ing in progress! and they have a gazillion cats in their house to boot.
Welcome to MDC!!! I think your situation is a little different than what others on this thread have described. You are fortunate that your mom has a desire to babysit. Most of our parents refused to babysit even of we wanted them to. They simply didn't care, couldn't be bothered. Please don't let something as natural as breastfeeding come between your child's relationship with his grandmother.
post #49 of 61
I think I'm realizing that I do have an uninvolved grandparent, MIL. MY DS only has 2 grandparents, my Mom and MIL because both DH's and my Dad are dead. My Mom is very involved, she babysits for me several times a month when I work my second job, and she goes with us when we do things like the zoo or apple picking.

My MIL, not so much. She doesn't drive but public transportation is very good and plentiful here. She lives about 1/2 hour away but DH would go pick her up anytime she wanted to see DS. She only sees him about once a month. She wasn't a very hands on parent (DH's grandmother did more of the raisng him) so this shouldn't surprise me. She's actually ok with him when she does see him but she does better with older kids. It's funny, her and DH act more like sister/brother than mom/son. She just doesn't know how to do the mom/grandma thing I guess.

So she's definitely not even 1/4 as bad as some on this thread, I just wish she would see DS more.
post #50 of 61
my parents are about 1 1/2 hours away. from the beginning my mom told me not to expect them to babysit, and so they haven't. that being said, they do come regularly, about once a month and they are pretty good with the kids when they are here. my mom definitely got much better with the kids once she found out she had cancer, but they're not super involved or anything.

my inlaws live here ... they don't see the kids very often either, maybe every other month or so. they haven't babysat the kids and i have no intention of asking. they're not particularly involved.

dh and i have come to realize that we're on our own when it comes to the kids and always will be. it would be nice to have the help though sometimes because we never have the chance to get away by ourselves.
post #51 of 61
I'm planning to be a very supportive mother/mother-in-law and grandma when the time comes.
post #52 of 61
I honestly think it is a boom grandparent thing.

My grandparents as well as my husband's were super involved in our upbringing. Our boomer parents would take trips or ship us of to grandma's for weeks during the summer, winter break and spring break.

My mom...(total boomer) after sending me to my grandparents nearly every school vacation all vacation long from ages 4 to 17 has had not had a single sleepover or extended (more than an hour) stretch with the kids alone..

My inlaws.. are much better they take the kids (they are 70 and not technically boomers).. the youngest one on overnights when the older two are at friend's overnight so we can go out on a date... and they have had big "camp outs" for all of their six grandkids. (btw.. the older two have a bio father that is not their son.. but the kids are all their grandkids)

My former mom inlaw.. well.. last year we walked into another family members hospital room and she did not even recoginze her grand kids.


So much for the boomers.. selfish parenting, selfish grandparenting... how many of us gen X or Y kids are going to take care of them in their old age???

(I know I will be..guilt and a strange sense of what family should be... having watched grandparents lovingly take care of both grandkids and their parents during my many many days and nights at grandma's side)



So.. basically I wrap it up as just another of the most selfish generation...
post #53 of 61
Interesting, I was wondering about that myself. My parents are in their late 40s. Don't know of they count as boomers, they're on the young side? But I think they do. They are very modern and yes, kind of self-absorbed to a degree. My ILs are in their 60s and have always been more traditional and very family-oriented and more giving of themselves and their time.

ETA: A boomer, technically, is someone born between 1946 and 1964. So, actually, my ILs and my parents are both just barely boomers, but on different ends of the spectrum. I still think there is a generational difference there.
post #54 of 61
I don't know...my parents are boomers but "selfish parenting" wouldn't have described them in the least. They were young parents, but AP and attentive.

That also doesn't explain the difference between the way some grandparents treat different kids from different families (such as my mom's attachment to my sister and brother's kid, but relative distance from mine).
post #55 of 61
This is so true!


Quote:
Originally Posted by TinkerBelle View Post
Here is the thing that gets me.

Some of these uninterested grandparents, and those who are just off doing their own thing, well, they have the right to do what they want of course. However, the day will come when they are older and expect their adult kids to help them. I think that they will be in for a shock when the adult kids and grandkids don't have time for them or feel no obligation to them.

I think that, barring toxic/abusive situations, family should help family, within reason, if they can.
post #56 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by JL83 View Post
Just curious what breastfeeding has to do with babysitting? I breastfed my DD until she was almost 3 and people were able to spend time with her from the very beginning.

At first my in-laws would come over and hold her while I took a nice long hot shower by myself upstairs. We'd often have tea until she nursed and then they'd care for her (most of the time she fell asleep while I nursed her). We started that when she was 4 or 5 weeks old. Then they'd take her out for a 30 to 60 minute walk around the neighborhood starting at 4 or 5 months. It was around then DH and I started dropping her off with a bottle of pumped breastmilk and going for lunch for an hour or so.

Also, if you care about cats (which doesn't make any sense unless your kid's allergic), why couldn't they babysit at your house?
Not everyone pumps or uses bottles. My DD is 13 mo and I've never pumped or used a bottle with her, so how could I leave her with anyone to babysit? Now she does eat solid food and could easily go 4 or 5 hours without nursing, but she doesn't like to do that.

Before DD was born my stepmom would go around saying she was never going to babysit and that we bought our house so we could be closer to them. We did buy in the same neighborhood because I like the area and I love my Dad, but she made it out like we were moochers and were expecting free babysitting. Which btw, because I ebf we have never had anyone babysit and never expected it.

Because I let my stepmom know I wouldn't need babysitting help she told our congregation that I didn't need any help. I found that out later after we received no phone calls, meals or anything, when that is the norm for new mothers. I was desperate for help but stepmom made sure I would get no offers.

My MIL and FIL didn't even see DD until she was 2 weeks old and they live maybe 5 mins away from us. They decided to take a vacation to Hawaii a few days before my due date and came home a couple days after DD was born. But they needed a week and a half to recover from the flight before they could see her, and even then we went over to their house.

We have given lots of pictures of DD to MIL/FIL but they gave away all the pictures. They had no pictures of DD anywhere until they put up a pic of her with her cousin. The cousin is there favorite and they have lots of pictures of him up.

I guess my expectations of what grandparents should be isn't necessarily what my own parents think. They seem to be too busy in their own lives to have any time for me or my family. Though my stepmom seems to be able to find lots of time for her own grandkids!
post #57 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Down2Earth View Post
Not everyone pumps or uses bottles. My DD is 13 mo and I've never pumped or used a bottle with her, so how could I leave her with anyone to babysit? Now she does eat solid food and could easily go 4 or 5 hours without nursing, but she doesn't like to do that.
And that's each individual's choice.

It has NOTHING to do with breastfeeding. My BFF hasn't used a bottle yet with her 10mo. She has still left him often for short periods of time with her DH and her in-laws.

I was objecting to the idea that because a woman's breastfeeding, she has to be tied to her baby. That's completely false. Some women chose that, but it is a complete choice.
post #58 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by JL83 View Post
And that's each individual's choice.

It has NOTHING to do with breastfeeding. My BFF hasn't used a bottle yet with her 10mo. She has still left him often for short periods of time with her DH and her in-laws.

I was objecting to the idea that because a woman's breastfeeding, she has to be tied to her baby. That's completely false. Some women chose that, but it is a complete choice.
The PP didn't say how old her LO was. How can you leave a EBF newborn for any substantial length of time? I guess I never thought of breastfeeding and "being tied to my baby" as bad things. And there are a lot of people that don't understand breastfed babies when all their experience has been with ff, which is probably why the PP's MIL didn't understand why she wouldn't be needing a babysitter for a while. I'm not saying one is better than the other, just different.

I'll let the PP defend herself if she feels the need, I guess.
post #59 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Down2Earth View Post
The PP didn't say how old her LO was. How can you leave a EBF newborn for any substantial length of time? I guess I never thought of breastfeeding and "being tied to my baby" as bad things. And there are a lot of people that don't understand breastfed babies when all their experience has been with ff, which is probably why the PP's MIL didn't understand why she wouldn't be needing a babysitter for a while. I'm not saying one is better than the other, just different.

I'll let the PP defend herself if she feels the need, I guess.

I don't think of breastfeeding as a bad thing. I breastfed my DD until she was almost 3.

I objected to the tone of the post where she said that there was no way she'd need babysitting of any sort because she was breastfeeding.

That's why I said things about having someone hold the baby while she got to take a nice long shower, or had a chance to take a nap. "Babysitting" doesn't need to involve an overnight stay for the baby at someone else's house. It can certainly work within the limits of EBF.
post #60 of 61

Same here

At least I know there are other families in the same situation as myself. Sad but comforting. Because none of my other friends have uninvolved parents, I really thought I was a very small minority!

Both of my parents are uninvolved (even during grandchildren's birthdays and at Christmas). They are divorced and since that time, haven't really been involved their own children's lives either. My In-laws, however, are the opposite of my parents. They are very involved, call often, send cards/packages, and try to see us at least once a year (they even treat my older daughter as their grandchild even though she is from a previous marriage).

For me, this poses a few issues. I find myself apologizing to my husband for my parents lack of involvement when his parents put in so much effort. I have to rationalize away my parents behavior to my children by saying we can't expect everyone to be interested in us in the same ways (my oldest child's last grandparent died so the grandparent absence is more obvious to her than to my younger child). For myself, I have had to learn not to set up expectations that my parents will be interested or even interact with me or their grandchildren on an emotional level (however, if they do, I will be pleasantly surprised).

I suggest that for those of us who have these absent grandparents, not to expect anything of them. Their behavior is not a reflection of who we are or how we raise our kids. If they want to be this way, it is their right as adults to make this decision and we can 't force them to change. I know this ideology seems wrong in our own cultural beliefs but our emotional energy doesn't need to be wasted on people who won't reciprocate.

On the other topic of breastfeeding and babysitting, I can relate. My first MIL (the one who just passed on) felt that breastfeeding was not only wrong but actually harmful to the baby. There was no way I was going to leave my DD with someone who would most likely try to formula feed her in my absence. My current MIL was a breastfeeder herself but our attitudes towards breastfeeding are different for everyone. When I would breastfeed, my MIL felt the need to leave the room to give me privacy even if I didn't feel that way. I'm not sure she would have been comfortable handling my breast milk in a bottle, and personally, I feel weird about people I'm not close to handling my breast milk. Plus, the breastfeeding bond with baby is hard to break, even for a few hours for some people.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Anyone have parents that don't show much interest in your kids?