Hi :) I'm a longtime lurker who desperately needs some advice.
I have a beautiful 6 month old baby girl. She's the light of my life, but her great-grandma (my grandmother) is making my life an absolute hell.
I have a very small family, and we're all super close. I grew up with pretty much only my mom and grandma. I'm a single mom, so they make up the bulk of my support system. My mom is great most of the time, and very supportive of most of my parenting choices. At worst, she "puts up with" the cloth diapering, co-sleeping, and babywearing.
Here's where things blow up. My grandmother has been watching V while I attend college classes a few days a week. This has been wonderful because I know she dotes on her and never lets her cry. V would definitely not get the same quality of attention and care from a daycare facility. She's high-needs, so she takes a lot of energy. I really do appreciate my grandmother watching her while I'm away.
V has NEVER taken well to a bottle (I've tried every kind known to man). Grandma started in with "When are you going to feed that baby?" at about 6 weeks. I explained that I'd be starting at 6 months, and every time she asked me about it again (practically every time I saw her) I'd say, "Grandma, you know my plan." Over. and. over. Now that she's 6 months old (and I'm on winter break) I've been slowly starting BLW with V. She's taken amazingly to it, but Mom and Grandma are VEHEMENTLY opposed to it. They're terrified of the choking factor and V not getting enough nutrients. Ive tried to show them the research and brought out everything I know about it, but they refuse to see it as anything other than a hippy new-age fad.
No matter what I do, I'm doing the wrong thing in my grandmother's eyes. She is an extreme control freak and perfectionist, and if I differ from her expectations, I'm WRONG. I try so hard to let things roll off my back, but after the millionth time of hearing the same comment, I usually end up snapping at her. Like today, we were at a restaurant, and she begged me to let V chew on a breadstick (!) because she was fussy. This is about the 15th time she's asked to give her some sort of nasty "teething biscuit" that was totally inappropriate for a 6 mo. I just looked at her and said, "NO." pretty sharply. When I apologized for snapping at her at the end of the meal, she said something to the effect of "Well, I'm used to it." She pretty consistently uses the guilt trip to make me feel like a terrible parent.
I try to make her understand that I don't mean to snap at her, but the way she talks to me really hurts my feelings. Every time we have this conversation, she turns it around on herself saying, "If you think YOUR feelings are hurt, just imagine how I feel!!" Which totally defeats the purpose of trying to talk to her about it. It just never gets us anywhere but more hurt feelings and pouting.
I really respect her and want her in V's life, but she hurts me so consistently that I just hate being around her I've gotten to the point where I'm about ready to resign myself and just puree the damn food and shut my mouth to keep everyone happy. She's not someone I can easily cut out of my life since we're all so close. I wouldn't want to if I could! We used to get along so well before V was born. I think she's having trouble relinquishing control and realizing that I'm an adult and capable of making my own decisions and mistakes.
Wow. Sorry for the rant. I'm just so stuck and don't know how else to handle this.