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Mother who is obsessed with my weight during pregnancy

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

This is my first post in personal growth, I think I just need to vent but if anyone has any advice or has gone though something similar please let me know!

 

I live abroad and only see my family when I go home twice a year, I call my mother once a week, we have always had a tumultuous relationship but over the past few years (since I moved away) things have gotten better.

 

My mother is very obsessed with weight and physical appearance. I called her last night and told her that I brought my first pair of maternity pants. I am 18 weeks with my first child. She got very upset and told me I am probably gaining too much weight and that I should only eat when I am hungry and not take in any additional calories. I tried to tell her that weight gain is normal during pregnancy and that I need extra nutrients during pregnancy (ie I am eating more). I also told her at my last doc's appt. (3 weeks ago) I had only gained 4 pounds. She was still upset and I tried repeatedly to steer the conversation in another direction (it didn't work)

 

Then she asked, and this really upset me for some reason, if I was sure that I am not having twins (I have had 2 sonograms - she knows the answer to this question).

 

Normally I would not care because I live so far but I am going there in a few days and will be staying for two weeks. I do not want to spend those two weeks fighting with her, but I know she will continually talk about my weight.

 

The selfish side of me wants to scream at her and call her a lunatic and tell her this kind of behavior is why I moved so far away, but I know that is not productive. She has had issues with depressions and anxiety all her life and has been on and off anti-depressants since I was young.

 

I know she is sick, I know wearing maternity cloths at 18 weeks is normal, but I cannot seem to let this go and I am afraid I may snap when she says something and I do not want to do that, especially when we are in front of friends or family, which is, for some reason, when she tends to talk about my appearance the most.

 

If anyone has any advice or has gone through something similar please let me know, it would be much appreciated :)

post #2 of 10
When my mom does stuff like this, the best thing to do is say "I have to go mom, I love you!" and hang up the phone. Don't try to convince her that she is wrong. She won't listen to you. Somewhere along the lines your mom never learned basic social skills. At this point in her life you won't be able to teach her what is appropriate or not. She should have learned these skills when she was 6 or 7! Hang in there. I know it's really hard to have a difficult mother. Is there a way to not go visit her? You need to protect yourself from toxic relationships during pregnancy and postpartum. It is much more important that you are emotionally secure during this time than your mom has visitors. Please trust me on this. (((HUGS)))
post #3 of 10
Set a boundary with her and just don't discuss it with her. When she brings up your weight, tell her that you aren't going to discuss it with her, then change the subject. If she brings it up again, repeat.

She's not going to be happy whatever you say, so set the tone for what you are willing to put up with.
post #4 of 10

Two weeks sounds like a long time to deal with that. I really wish you the best. The only time in my life my mom has NOT been obsessed with my weight was when I was pregnant. Anyway, I agree that boundaries MUST be set. If she brings it up, do not engage. Do not talk about it at all. Tell her, "mom, we're not going to talk about it anymore. I already said what I was going to say on the phone and this conversation is over" Period. Do not argue. If she continues to argue, leave her presence.

 

This is sick, what your mom is saying. Totally unacceptable. I heard similar things when I was just a little girl, from both my parents. So I really do get it.

 

I hope it goes well. Be strong. And PLEASE take care of yourself and your baby. If you need to leave early, leave.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thank you for the advice and support, I am going to stay with another family member while there, I think not being under the same roof with her is a good idea, although I know we will be together for family functions. I agree with setting boundaries, I know it will cause an argument, but I think its better to have the argument at the beginning of the trip rather then spend 2 weeks not saying anything in order to avoid conflict.

post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaPaix View Post

I know it will cause an argument, but I think its better to have the argument at the beginning of the trip rather then spend 2 weeks not saying anything in order to avoid conflict.



I just keep repeating the same line over and over to whatever my crazy family member is saying. It's is my experience that if I respond to what they are saying, I end up in an argument, but if I just repeat the same thing over and over, they eventually figure out that I'm really not going to discuss this with them.

 

The hardest part of this for me is that I am a pleaser and would really prefer that there were a way for me to make them happy. I would love to bend myself into pretty much anything just to have peace. I did that for years, and it didn't work. They weren't happy anyway and I kinda of died inside. Letting go of the idea that I need to be different so they can be happy was very freeing. Now I just focus on myself and what works for me, while gently setting boundaries. I figure they need to figure out what works for them. I can't do it.

 

(did that make sense?)

post #7 of 10

My mom has been obsessed w/ my weight most of my life and even though I had lap band surgery over a year ago, she only found out last month. Her negative reaction was very predictable. I think she's actually bummed I'm not that heavy anymore. I don't see her that often or talk to her that often but when we do, I keep things very, very bland. I don't bring up anything that she might latch onto and if she tries to stear the conversation somewhere off limits, I'll either change the topic or find a reason to leave the room.  My advice would be to go for being boring and don't give her fuel.  Good luck on your visit!

post #8 of 10

My MIL was like this when I was pregnant. I just repeated "I'd rather not discuss it" over and over. But that didn't work because she went to my mother and told her she thought I had an eating disorder lol. No real advice, I just know how you feel. Though MIL thought (before my son was born) that I was not gaining enough and then after that I had gained too much. I just couldn't win.

 

I think the only thing you can do is try to be clear that you won't discuss it and that your midwife/dr thinks you are fine and just repeat it over and over again. At least she'll know how you feel.

 

 

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post





I just keep repeating the same line over and over to whatever my crazy family member is saying. It's is my experience that if I respond to what they are saying, I end up in an argument, but if I just repeat the same thing over and over, they eventually figure out that I'm really not going to discuss this with them.

 

The hardest part of this for me is that I am a pleaser and would really prefer that there were a way for me to make them happy. I would love to bend myself into pretty much anything just to have peace. I did that for years, and it didn't work. They weren't happy anyway and I kinda of died inside. Letting go of the idea that I need to be different so they can be happy was very freeing. Now I just focus on myself and what works for me, while gently setting boundaries. I figure they need to figure out what works for them. I can't do it.

 

(did that make sense?)


yes it did, thanks again everyone!

 

post #10 of 10

Oh, my mother in law kept commenting how I was having twins, too, it was really irritating. She never fixated on my weight in pounds, per say, but just could not stop talking about how "big" I was (hello, there's a human in there!). I always brushed it off----I guess my best advice would be to tell her very clearly once the very first time she brings it up that you are gaining weight in a way that will keep your baby healthy and that you will not tolerate any more conversation about it. If she brings it up again, say we are not conversing about my weight. If she continues, leave.

 

Idk, that's the best advice I have. So sorry you're dealing with this!

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