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Grandparents are making me Crazy!!!!!

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

My parents are making me crazy. They watch my ds, who is almost 4, 1 day a week. They continuously disregard my wishes, ignore my requests, and just do stupid things.

Edited by Tashakittie - 3/2/13 at 10:18pm
post #2 of 12
Sounds like you need different child care.

Normally I am all for maintaining the relationship first and foremost provided they are loving, caring people who happen to not make the same food, parenting etc choices that I do.

However yours sound toxic and seeing that they are regular caregivers with out your presence means they will be a greater influence than if you just visited them every Sunday for example or had dinner with them once a week.

They think its fine to feed him nothing but trashy chocolate/ cookies/ soda all day long. When I ask them to stop, they get pissy, sarcastic, rude, say things like "your mommy won't let you. your mommy says no" instead of more responsible answers.
again, normally I wouldn’t sweat the food thing every once and while and even in this case I could maybe get over it but not what I bolded. I wouldn’t allow that from my caregiver and I won't allow if from family.

They let him act like a spoiled brat, which he does not do elsewhere. They let him speak rudely, yell at them, hit, kick, push, which he does not do elsewhere.
not sure about the "let" part but he must be learning the rude and aggressive behavior somewhere. These are not appropriate responses/reactions for a caregiver n your absence. What works for you at home? Are they willing to discuss?

Politics- they continuously push (right wing, extreme) politics on him. He's not even four! Does he need to know about politics? He surely should not be calling the president stupid without knowing why he is doing that!
Ok broken record here but dealing with this when you are there and being able to talk about it later is key but I would not be leaving my child alone in the care of people who would fill my child’s head with extreme politics of any kind. Again, its one thing if each time you finished a visit you had to talk to your child about "in our family we dont hit (don't call people stupid, etc)....." it’s another thing when these people are your caregivers and you can not counter what you are not there to see/hear.

And what is most weird to me, is that whenever I observe him there, he's in a bad mood. As soon as he gets there he is in a bad mood. It seems that I only have to mention them for ds's mood to change negatively. Yet he is crazy about his grandparents. Defends them with passion. Asks to go there nearly everyday.
Huge red flags here. Pick up "protecting the gift" by Gavin Debecker at the library. A lot of abused kids (emotional, physical and sexual) will choose, will defend and will protect their abusers. It can be a classic response. Not saying that your folks are abusing him but what you wrote really rang some bells for me.

I really do value that he is close to them, but I cannot handle the huge shift in personality. I feel like something is wrong. He goes from being amazingly sweet and centered, to this little beast. I feel like I should not be letting him go there anymore because I have to spend so much energy getting back to normal, after only 1 day with them!
If you would not accept this from a caregiver do not accept it from your parents. You can still nurture a relationship with them and keep the bonds close but, IMHO, I would NOT being leaving a 4 year old alone with them period. I would drop the one day a week childcare and instead find away to for you and your son to visit with them together.
post #3 of 12
You definitely need to find someone else to watch him that one day a week. That is definitely a toxic situation.
post #4 of 12
After reading your post ... I was wondering if this couple were anyone else but your parents would you allow them to watch/babysit your child? I'm all for a good relationship w/ the grandparents but it sounds as if they DO NOT have your LO's best interests at heart. Is your LO with you the rest of the week or is he in daycare? If not in DC perhaps you could find a great one for your lo to go to for the one day a week. Even though I am a SAHM I'd rather send my kiddo to DC for one day a week than to send him to a place that is clearly not healthy for him. Honestly, I think that the acting out is his way of letting you know that this is not working for him. If it were me, I would only let my Lo visit w/ them when I could be there too.
post #5 of 12
Find another caregiver. If they were "really dumb parents," then why do you think they'd be good caregivers for your son? You don't need to cut your child's grandparents out of his life, but this situation is clearly not good for you or your son.
post #6 of 12
Oof. Bad situation. I wouldn't send my kid a place that encouraged terrible behavior and rudeness. Just.. no. That kind of conflicting message will only get harder as he gets older.
post #7 of 12
That sounds like an awful situation for your son. I hope you find someone else to watch him.
post #8 of 12
Ditto everyone else. Find other care.
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the support. The only reason I've encouraged their watching him is because they ask to, all.the.time. He asks to see them all the time too. So, over the past year, I've allowed it because it had seemed like a good situation. But the longer it goes on, the more they watch him, the more ridiculous they become.
As for being dumb parents, after all the therapy and time healing wounds, I figured they'd learned enough to handle hanging out with their grandson on a positive level.
No, I would not let ANYONE else watch my kid under these circumstances, so really, that comment struck in a very positive light. I would never allow anyone to treat ds like that otherwise. It IS completely unacceptable that grandparents can.
And also, this situation has not been out of necessity, but rather out of what seemed like a mutual desire.
Thanks, everyone for the input and the insight. Much appreciated.
post #10 of 12
ditto what everyone else said. find other weekly child care- BUT also before letting them watch hm again I would set some ground rules but make some compromises (maybe make a list in order of what is most important and let a couple things go). Otherwise you can tell them if these things dont chnage you will not leave them in their care- There is nothing wrong with that. If you Stand Your Ground Now it will get easier with time and they wont constantly ignore you. There will be bigger and more important issues as he grows- you need to do this now before it gets even more difficult.good luck
post #11 of 12
I'm curious as to if they behaved this way when you were a child? You turned out fairly opposite to them...was it in reaction to their parenting?
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Cascadian, in response to your question, yes, practically everything I have done as a conscious human being, since about the age of 15 has been in reaction to them and their failures as parents. It was a very dysfunctional situation growing up, and I was always the black sheep amongst their herd. Still am, really. As a parent, I have always analyzed the way I was raised, and have tried to make the most educated, conscious, and compassionate decisions about rearing my own children. I have 2 sisters, and the three of us spent quite a bit of time in psychiatric treatment. I spent a great amount of my youth analyzing myself, situation, and figuring out who I am. There is a lot of mental illness, drug addiction, and alcoholism in my family- I did not/ do not want to spend my life internally tormented or unhappy. There are so many broken relationships. No one gets along with each other.
My parents taught my sisters and I to compete with each other, and as a result, I don't really speak much to either of them. I'm not a competitive person, and they are very much so. Jealousy is a foundation in everyone's personalities between my parents and sisters- I hate the emotion, and have sought my entire life to work it out of my system. My parents really like provoking jealousy. As a couple, they are really into fighting. It was one of the mainstays, ever constant in their relationship.
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