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#1 of 22 Old 10-07-2011, 08:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'll try to be concise.  I usually really like my MIL and FIL and feel very secure with them.  However, I'm having a really hard time with both SILs having their first babies.  One is 4 mos old, the other is in labor. 

 

When DD1 was born we lived about 20 hours away.  They came for the first time when she was 6 weeks old and MIL didn't have to take off work.  They gave us $100 and some outfits.  When DD2 was born we were in the area.  MIL took 1 day off to watch DD1 when I was in the hospital, gave us a nice $200 rocking chair and some clothes.  They brought meals off and on for about a week and a half and took laundry a couple of times.  Mostly, I was happy with that.   I know my DDs are very important to them.

 

Both SILS have DH's, friends, and dual incomes. 

 

So when SIL gets pregnant, MIL takes all the parenting classes with her.  MIL goes maternity shopping with her.  They buy their very expensive nursery furniture.  ILs get a car seat.  They spend all day waiting at the hospital.  MIL takes night-duty once or twice a week with the newborn when she has to work the next day but SIL is on maternity leave.  They babysat overnight when baby was 6 weeks old because it was SILs birthday.  When MIL was off work, she would get up at 5am and let herself in and take care of the baby so SIL didn't have to do it.  SIL had almost round the clock help from them for 3 months -- even when her DH was home.  What???  So that's how this works?  Her DH could have taken his FMLA time off and they could have grown as a couple and family and SIL could have realized she doesn't need to be rescued by her parents from everything that might be hard.  MIL is still the one to take him out during chuch.  Both of them still do lots of diapers and bottles and picking up from daycare.  It's a very easy-going baby BTW, slept from bedtime till morning from 6 wks. 

 

So now other SIL is in labor.  She lives 7 hours away.  The minute MIL got off work, they drive there.  They'll be spending the next 3 weeks with either one or both of them there, driving back and forth so she can still work sometimes, but SIL won't be "alone".  Here's what put me over the top -- today is DD2's birthday.  They were supposed to come to her party.  We are on the way to SILs house.  They could have just spent 15 minutes to give her some hugs and her presents.  We weren't even on the radar.  I was so sad.  I'm at least 80% sure they would have done any and all of the above for us had we asked for it, yet I'm finding it impossible not to take it personally. 

 

DH and I are more independent.  I hope that the staggering difference between what they do for us and for them is their attempt to respect our independence. 

 

I want to be happy for other people.  I want to keep a good relationship with ILs.  I want to not judge SILs for the multitide of their

parenting choices that I have done differently.  I do not want to pass the critical spirit that I grew up with onto my children. 

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#2 of 22 Old 10-08-2011, 04:29 PM
 
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It sounds like your feelings are really hurt, not from one thing, but from a whole pattern of behavior.

 

Do you have parents around that help too? Could part of it be that there were things she thought your mom was doing? Has your in-laws financial situation changed since your kids were born?

 

Are there other things that could factor in? Like my parents do a TON of stuff for my sister and her kids because my sister is mentally ill. It used to annoy me because it's not fair and I always thought they liked her better, but the truth is my sister really needs the help and her kids need all little scrap of sanity,  and me and my kids and husband are all fine. We are. We're fine. We don't need anything.

 

I wouldn't hold the party against them because this isn't just the birth of the grandchild -- this is their daughter in a medical situation, that while usually goes just fine, sometimes doesn't. It's like expecting some one to stop at a party on their way to the ER because their child was just taken in. It wasn't a slight of your DD, it's just that party comes lower than "daughter at the hospital."

 

But it sounds like the labor/party thing was part of a pattern of feeling slighted.

 

How does your husband feel about this?

 

It's actually really normal for parents to do more for their adult daughters throughout life than they do for their sons. It's sexist -- a lot of parents always see their daughters as less capable than their sons.

 

It doesn't sound like you really need anything from them -- what do you WANT from them? What would make you feel loved? Feel like your kids are important? May be figuring that out and letting them in a nice way would be good. 

 

 

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#3 of 22 Old 10-08-2011, 04:48 PM
 
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it's hard for me not to be jealous of my sild also. It's very painful for me actually.

 

I do think it's normal behavior. Usually the son goes off and spends holidays with the wife's family and the girls stay with their mom.

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#4 of 22 Old 10-08-2011, 08:18 PM
 
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I think any feelings you have are valid, but I think what you are dealing with here is that mothers are closer to their own daughters who have children, rather than their daughters-in-law. When I had my son, my mother flew halfway across the country to stay with me for two weeks. I had no expectation that my MIL who lived half an hour away (and who I like very much) would do anything similar (though she has helped us out with DS many many times since).

Sorry about this happening on you DD's bday, but I think you'll need to figure out a way to make peace with this as she'll now have a cousin with the same or very close bday.
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#5 of 22 Old 10-08-2011, 11:39 PM
 
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 What???  So that's how this works?  Her DH could have taken his FMLA time off and they could have grown as a couple and family and SIL could have realized she doesn't need to be rescued by her parents from everything that might be hard.

 

Oh dear!  Not to invalidate your feelings at ALL--but do permit me to show them in a different light:  Most likely you are much better off without their style of "help", and I think you know that too ;)  I'd say embrace your independence from them, and instead of getting upset, try to focus on how many wonderful growth opportunities your family has gotten that they are essentially denying their own daughters.  duck.gif

 

Seriously tho, I would feel hurt too--esp. as the kids get older and take notice.  I had the same dynamic with my ex's family (my older two's dad).  They spent huge levels of money, time, and consideration on their dd's children, and a really disproportionate amount on mine.  I guess it's still that way.  The kids are plenty old enough to notice, and wonder about it sometimes to me.  It just is what it is, unfortunately.  

 

As for their treatment of your dd's birthday, THAT is completely unacceptable.  I would be pretty mad.  I hope your dd had a great birthday and wasn't too upset about her grandparents missing it.  Ugh.  

 

Big hugs to you!!  


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#6 of 22 Old 10-09-2011, 06:09 AM
 
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Originally Posted by JElaineB View Post

I think any feelings you have are valid, but I think what you are dealing with here is that mothers are closer to their own daughters who have children, rather than their daughters-in-law.

This. DS & DN were born during the same year so it was really really obvious how different the inlaws dealt with DS vs. SIL & DN. They did give DS some clothes and stuff but they bought SOOO much stuff for DN and still buy him way more for holidays/bdays/etc. And MIL came to help out a bit when DS was little so I could work (WAH) but then once DN was born MIL suddenly stopped coming and really hasn't visited more than once or twice in the 2.5 years since. To be honest, although it caused some hardship (hard to WAH without her help, for ex.!), I was kind of glad that DN took all the attention off us & DS and we could just be our own little family. It was just as well, really, though every once in a while I have twinges of.... jealousy, I guess?

I grew up with a similar dynamic, my grandparents were very close to my aunt's family (their daughter's) and took them on special outings/trips/bought them nice gifts while my family (their son's) was still loved but nowhere near that level of attention & affection. They would drop everything with us if aunt's family needed something, however minor. It was always a bit of a sore point with my family, but I've come to realize that's just how it is, in-laws tend to be much closer to their daughter's families than their sons...

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#7 of 22 Old 10-09-2011, 09:58 AM
 
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#8 of 22 Old 10-09-2011, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thank you everyone!

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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

 

 

Do you have parents around that help too? Could part of it be that there were things she thought your mom was doing? Has your in-laws financial situation changed since your kids were born?

 

How does your husband feel about this?

 

It's actually really normal for parents to do more for their adult daughters throughout life than they do for their sons. It's sexist -- a lot of parents always see their daughters as less capable than their sons.

 

It doesn't sound like you really need anything from them -- what do you WANT from them? What would make you feel loved? Feel like your kids are important? May be figuring that out and letting them in a nice way would be good. 

 

 



My family is almost 3 hrs away.  For my first, they were both about 20 hours.  I'm not very close with them.  MIL would definately defer to them if the issue came up.

 

How does DH feel -- It doesn't bother him as much as me, but he is disappointed in both his sisters and parents.  In SIL for not stepping up and ILs for enabling her.  Disappointed that SILs seem to expect MIL to do everything and that SILs seem a bit "lazy" (his word) about doing their research and doing what's best for baby.  SILs seem to think it's about them, not about their babies.  He was very creeped out when we found out MIL saw the delivery.  But he's over it, and I'm not. 

 

No, we don't need anything.  What I want is to feel like my kids are just as important and SILs kids.  Intellectually, I believe they are.  It's just hard to feel right now with all those examples.  What would knowing they're just as important look like?  I'm not sure. 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JElaineB View Post

I think any feelings you have are valid, but I think what you are dealing with here is that mothers are closer to their own daughters who have children, rather than their daughters-in-law. When I had my son, my mother flew halfway across the country to stay with me for two weeks. I had no expectation that my MIL who lived half an hour away (and who I like very much) would do anything similar (though she has helped us out with DS many many times since).
Sorry about this happening on you DD's bday, but I think you'll need to figure out a way to make peace with this as she'll now have a cousin with the same or very close bday.



Yes, I believe daughters vs DILs could sum it up.   I also think this is about DH and I being more independent.  Not only is he a son, but we're both firstborns.  I just don't want my kids to be the ones left out because we don't need them.

 

Yeah, the same bday.  DH and I were both sad about it.  I know it should be something really special and twice the fun, but I can't help feeling that now it's the more important grandchild's birthday.  We don't need them to celebrate, but neither do I want her to be the one to not get chosen.


 

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Originally Posted by Krystal323 View Post

Oh dear!  Not to invalidate your feelings at ALL--but do permit me to show them in a different light:  Most likely you are much better off without their style of "help", and I think you know that too ;)  I'd say embrace your independence from them, and instead of getting upset, try to focus on how many wonderful growth opportunities your family has gotten that they are essentially denying their own daughters.  duck.gif



Yeah, I get the denying their daughters growth part.  I'm actually really worried about what will happen to that SIL when ILs can no longer fix everything.   What upset me so much about the situation was SIL not stepping up and not dealing with her issues before she got pregnant, not that I didn't get that much "help".   I definately need to focus on what we're doing right vs what I'm upset about.

 


 

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Originally Posted by rainbow_mandala View Post

I agree with some of the other posters--it sounds like your MIL might just be closer to her daughters, so she naturally feels the urge to do more for them during such a sensitive time in their lives.  It's a cultural thing, for sure--she probably expects that your mother is doing for you what she has done and is doing for her daughters.  She's not, though, is she?  I assume not because otherwise you probably wouldn't feel so hurt, but I could be wrong.  It sounds like you really like your MIL and you wish she could be there for you more, but maybe you're afraid of speaking up about it?  I suggest writing her a letter, if you're comfortable, explaining how you feel and what hurt you about her behavior and maybe ask for her help more often.  It's great being "independent" but we all need a little TLC, especially from family, whether they're blood-related or otherwise. 

 

 

Yeah, not very close to my mom -- very insightful to pick up on that.   I actually think sometimes my independence is a bit of a defense mechanism -- "no help, no problem, didn't need it anyway".  Also I previously had a problem with my self-esteem being tied to accomplishments.  MUCH better now, but still related. 

 

 

 

I want to say again that I really like ILs and apart from their tendency to enable, really respect them.   I think this is more about me.  The birthday party was a problem because of the pattern.  While I realize it was birth vs birthday, I felt it as "this new grandchild needs to be seen immediately vs this new grandchild we'll see when it's convenient in 6 weeks".  There is so much more to that, I know, it's just how it felt and why it hurt so much. 

 

The things they did for me were ok at the time, so they should still be ok.  I think the problem is that I'm turning what they did into how important the kids were.

 

Also having trouble respecting SILs neediness.  Sometimes I'm not sure I get the "it takes a village" thing.  I'm definately hurt rather than jealous.  I mean, I can't get mad at her for not being in the delivery room when I absolutely don't want her there!  But the difference between visit at delivery and visit at 6 weeks is still hurting me.  I'm more of the one to ask to be left alone for family time, or please keep visits short and bring dinner and do a chore.  The idea that this SIL (the one with the older baby who was so obviously enabled) needed her mom even when she had her DH was kind of disturbing to me. 

 

Please keep the comments coming!

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#9 of 22 Old 10-09-2011, 07:50 PM
 
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I think that you and your husband being firstborns is a large part of the equation, too.  My brother and his wife had far more help from my parents than I did, and same for DH with his family.  While it is probably also a daughter vs daughter-in-law thing, in my experience as a couple that are both firstborns, we were more independent than the younger siblings, but more importantly, we were also perceived as more independent and capable, too.  Possibly your MIL doesn't think you need the help or doesn't want to step on your toes.  I had to be very direct with my family and let them know that I felt the grandchildren were needing more of their time if they wanted to be closer to them.  Actually, both sides of the family were quicker to see things from the point of view of what the grandchildren needed.  We still don't get as much help as either of our younger siblings, but there has been effort on both sides of the family to keep up with the grandchildren, at least.

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#10 of 22 Old 10-10-2011, 11:02 AM
 
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#11 of 22 Old 10-10-2011, 05:44 PM
 
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It's normal really.  My IL's did nothing for us.  My own parents did more.  My SIL was pregnant and the world stopped for her.  She lost it though and it was very sad for us all.  My sister feels the same way with her new family.  They are very close to their daughter but their son is on his own.  He can take care of his own is their thinking.  Sorry it's that way though.  It does feel crappy. 

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#12 of 22 Old 10-10-2011, 06:22 PM
 
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OP, why were you and DH creeped out that MIL saw the delivery?

Why is it not normal to want your mom there for the birth or in the weeks afterwards? Id love it if my mom took a night shift once a week. I dont see their relationship as codependent really. It sounds pretty normal to me. Moms often feel more comfortable sharing the birth experience with their own daughters than they do with there DILs. And for my part, my stepmom (who is my mom, my mom is out of my life) was there for DD being born, and there is no way Id want an in law in the room.

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#13 of 22 Old 10-10-2011, 09:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by rainbow_mandala View Post

Reading your responses, it sounds to me like your SILs have co-dependent relationships with their mother.  

 

I understand why you'd feel hurt by what seems to be favoritism among the grandchildren, but I have a feeling that if you looked closer at the nature of the relationships your MIL has with her daughters, you'll see that she doesn't know any different and doesn't see anything wrong with how she treats people.  The grandkids are simply an extension of the relationships that are emotionally set with the adult children.  Since it sounds like she's co-dependent with her daughters, she naturally sees those grandkids as being an extension of the co-dependency.  Since she's not co-dependent with her son or you (oftentimes, sons are viewed as being much more independent than daughters, especially if they're the firstborn), your kids are then deemed more independent in her eyes.  It's not a conscious thing; she's probably not the least bit aware that she's going about it in this way.  If it really bothers you, then I urge you to talk to her about it, in whatever way feels comfortable: phone, e-mail, over a cup of coffee, whatever will help you clearly state how you perceive the favoritism and what you need from her, both for yourself and your kids.  If you can't state what YOU need, then make it about the kids, like a PP said thumb.gif



I've thought one of them was codependent for years.  Skimming the link, I'm not sure if it's exactly right, but there's definately a history of rescue, and MIL's a people pleaser.  I also see a lack of boundaries, but that may be just my viewpoint since I'm on the other end of the spectrum with my mom.

 

She tries REALLY hard not to play favorites.  (Even though I'm not feeling it right now).  When they gave SIL a divorce, they felt bad about not doing anything for us and gave us a Dyson.  A couple of weeks ago, they babysat DN and asked if we wanted a date too.  I am concerned that just because of the MIL/SIL relationship it could happen, but it's too soon to tell.  They spent more time with DN in a couple of weeks than with my DDs in their life, but that was truly about SIL, not about comparing our babies.  I'm REALLY sensitive to it right now. 

 

 

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OP, why were you and DH creeped out that MIL saw the delivery?
Why is it not normal to want your mom there for the birth or in the weeks afterwards? Id love it if my mom took a night shift once a week. I dont see their relationship as codependent really. It sounds pretty normal to me. Moms often feel more comfortable sharing the birth experience with their own daughters than they do with there DILs. And for my part, my stepmom (who is my mom, my mom is out of my life) was there for DD being born, and there is no way Id want an in law in the room.



DH was creeped out by the physicalness of it.  He said there is NO WAY he will ever go into a delivery room with anyone but me.  For me, it's just really special couple/baby time that I'm not willing to share.  That and the whole nudity and primalness of birth thing. 

 

Could there be a degree of how much the mom is there?  SIL had at least one of her parents with her all day long for weeks and still wanted her mom on the weekends when her DH was home.  I don't think that's good for the couple's relationship.  As far as night-shift goes, I just think as a parent, that's your responsibility.  If you're breastfeeding or cosleeping, it's not even a possibility. 

 

 

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Possibly your MIL doesn't think you need the help or doesn't want to step on your toes. 

 

 

Definately, which is why I'm TRYING not to be upset about it.  I really believe she would do this stuff for us too if it was what we wanted. 

 

 

I'm definately feeling better, but would still love to hear what you think.  I also don't know how I'm going to step into this aunt role.  Due to the way this has all played out I'm not really wanting anything to do with their babies...  neither am I feeling much respect for SILs...

 

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#14 of 22 Old 10-11-2011, 05:03 AM
 
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DH was creeped out by the physicalness of it.  He said there is NO WAY he will ever go into a delivery room with anyone but me.  For me, it's just really special couple/baby time that I'm not willing to share.  That and the whole nudity and primalness of birth thing. 

 

Could there be a degree of how much the mom is there?  SIL had at least one of her parents with her all day long for weeks and still wanted her mom on the weekends when her DH was home.  I don't think that's good for the couple's relationship.  As far as night-shift goes, I just think as a parent, that's your responsibility.  If you're breastfeeding or cosleeping, it's not even a possibility....

 


But, thats not really true. You can co sleep 6 nights a week and let the baby sleep with your mom on the couch for a few hours one night so you can get a little rejuvenation. That doesnt mean you arent cosleeping. IMO, it is the parents responsibility, but all across the world women help each other during this time. My mom came three times to give me some night relief. Of course, I still had to get up to breastfeed, but even just the 4 hours of sleep I got was way more than I had gotten all week and I woke up the next day and could function.

So, do you birth at home? Im just asking because you said it was really special couple time that you were unwilling to share. IMO, if some nurse Ive never met is there, its no longer really special couple time. My mom stepped in to help at the pushing stage because DH was in great need of some labor support and I wanted someone besides the nurse to help him out. She immediately stepped out as soon as DD arrived. IDK, all Im saying is that it is up to each woman who they want to share their birth with, and there are a lot of women who cant imagine there mom not being there for that moment. (I can, I just needed help at the last minute. It was totally unplanned, Ijust knew she was in the waiting room)

I agree with how much Mom is there being a factor, but when I was pregnant I thought I would be scared to be alone with baby. After she was born I didnt feel like I needed my mom to be there with me all the time, but it was still nice when she did come because it meant that I could relax a little and just pay attention to nursing (not wondering how I was going to eat lunch, take a shower, ect. Are these SIL's DH's home? Because my DH had to return to work pretty soon after DD was born, and he wasnt really able to help me. He leaves for work at 6, and works manual labor all day, so I wasnt going to ask him to do a nightshift so I could get some rest.

And I agree, no parents around when DH is home. They need some family bonding time.

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#15 of 22 Old 10-11-2011, 06:49 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

OP, why were you and DH creeped out that MIL saw the delivery?
Why is it not normal to want your mom there for the birth or in the weeks afterwards? Id love it if my mom took a night shift once a week. I dont see their relationship as codependent really. It sounds pretty normal to me. Moms often feel more comfortable sharing the birth experience with their own daughters than they do with there DILs. And for my part, my stepmom (who is my mom, my mom is out of my life) was there for DD being born, and there is no way Id want an in law in the room.

nod.gif I totally agree with this. They are her daughters. You are her daughter in law. I would never expect to be treated the same as someone else's daughters. That's what my parents are for.

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#16 of 22 Old 10-11-2011, 07:14 AM
 
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Originally Posted by llwr View Post

 

 They spent more time with DN in a couple of weeks than with my DDs in their life, but that was truly about SIL, not about comparing our babies.  I'm REALLY sensitive to it right now.

 


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I think it sounds like what you want is for them to spend more time with your kids, and I wonder if you are worried about how this will play out as the kids get older -- if they will just be "closer" to your nieces and nephews than to your children.

 

Have you told your MIL that your DD missed her at the birthday party? May be you could suggest that your in-laws take your kids to the zoo (or something like that) and spend some time just having fun with them.

 

I think there is a massive different between trained support people at a birth and family members. Although I am not creeped out by someone else wanting their mother there, I can see how with the whole pattern of behavior of your SIL's not quite acting like adults, not leaning on their spouses, that it adds to a odd dynamic.  I think the issues with your in-laws are about the whole pattern, not one thing. Any of these things in isolation would have rolled off your back, but all together, not so much.


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#17 of 22 Old 10-16-2011, 11:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just wanted to thank everyone!

 

I'm feeling much better.  I don't expect to be as important as the daughters, that wouldn't be fair to them.  The trouble was, I was seeing this as family units and grandchildren, not that their son simply can't give birth.  Maybe that shows how well I've been welcomed into the family.  It's still pretty weird to see the whole world stop for them.  My births were pretty important to me, after all.  But it also helps with my lack of excitement for them; they're not MY sisters after all.  I've also realized that this is about my relationship with my mom.  If I'd gotten that kind of help from her after my births, maybe I wouldn't have cared about differences with ILs. 

 

As far as help goes, that's what I was using to prove that SILs kids must be more important.  I'm sure it's just as much that DH and I don't really expect or need it, but it feels better to say it's the emotional attatchment between MIL and SILs that I'm simply not a part of.  I am a little concerned that they will be closer simply as an extension of the MIL/SIL relationship, but I also know that DDs are important to ILs and they will try hard to be fair, and will be happy to spend more time with them should we think it's needed.  That's about all I can ask for.

 

This has kind of focused on who's in the delivery room, which really wasn't what I was focused on, just what bothered DH the most!  We didn't even know about that when I wrote the first post.  I don't think it's bad or codependent for a woman to have help from her mom with a newborn.  In the case of one SIL, there was lots of history of her being rescued by her parents, and her mom was basically the one taking care of the baby.  I'm not qualified to diagnose codependency, but there is definately enabling and what I consider to be some unhealthiness.  Her mom was getting up at 5, letting herself in and taking care of the baby in the morning so SIL didn't have to get up.  The trouble was, the baby was almost 3 mo, sleeping from bedtime till morning and this was STILL happening.  And SIL wanted them there even when her DH was home. 

 

Adaline's Mama, to answer your question, her DH took a week off, which was typical for his workplace.  However, he did qualify for FMLA, and seemed to be able to get off whenever he really needed to.  I think that would have been a much better dynamic for them.    Although I'd love a home birth, I've had both in a hospital, but since I don't want to UC, I see medical personnel as a necessary evil.  My midwife stays with her clients who birth without pain relief, so I didn't really have to worry about nursing staff during labor. 

 

Other SIL would have fared much better had it not been for the scene set by her sister and the fact that it all played out on DDs birthday.  Remember, we had no family come for our first child until well into the second month.  So it's kind of hard for us to see what the big deal is sometimes.  There are a couple things she said and planned that I don't think showed the best perspective, but I don't consider her codependent. 

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#18 of 22 Old 10-20-2011, 01:59 PM
 
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hope things get better soon. sending hugs

 


Mom to K(7)M(4)and baby J(2)cold.gifhh2.gif
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#19 of 22 Old 10-20-2011, 02:20 PM
 
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My husband qualifies for FMLA, but it's unpaid, and that would be a severe hardship for our family. He's never taken it for any of our children's births.

 

Maybe your MIL assumes you would be like some moms who really want a private babymoon? Did you ever invite them to come and see the new baby? I'm just wondering if they were trying hard to respect you.

 

I also think that you honestly need to let go of some of the judgement about whether or not it's ok for MIL to let herself in at 5 am, or SIL to want her there, or anything else. Some DHs are not very good support, especially with a first baby. Some mothers and daughters are joined at the hip. I make judgments too, but if it's interfering with your own peace of mind or your relationships, try to step back and think of all the reasons it might be necessary. Or better yet, don't think about it at all.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by llwr View Post

Just wanted to thank everyone!

 

I'm feeling much better.  I don't expect to be as important as the daughters, that wouldn't be fair to them.  The trouble was, I was seeing this as family units and grandchildren, not that their son simply can't give birth.  Maybe that shows how well I've been welcomed into the family.  It's still pretty weird to see the whole world stop for them.  My births were pretty important to me, after all.  But it also helps with my lack of excitement for them; they're not MY sisters after all.  I've also realized that this is about my relationship with my mom.  If I'd gotten that kind of help from her after my births, maybe I wouldn't have cared about differences with ILs. 

 

As far as help goes, that's what I was using to prove that SILs kids must be more important.  I'm sure it's just as much that DH and I don't really expect or need it, but it feels better to say it's the emotional attatchment between MIL and SILs that I'm simply not a part of.  I am a little concerned that they will be closer simply as an extension of the MIL/SIL relationship, but I also know that DDs are important to ILs and they will try hard to be fair, and will be happy to spend more time with them should we think it's needed.  That's about all I can ask for.

 

This has kind of focused on who's in the delivery room, which really wasn't what I was focused on, just what bothered DH the most!  We didn't even know about that when I wrote the first post.  I don't think it's bad or codependent for a woman to have help from her mom with a newborn.  In the case of one SIL, there was lots of history of her being rescued by her parents, and her mom was basically the one taking care of the baby.  I'm not qualified to diagnose codependency, but there is definately enabling and what I consider to be some unhealthiness.  Her mom was getting up at 5, letting herself in and taking care of the baby in the morning so SIL didn't have to get up.  The trouble was, the baby was almost 3 mo, sleeping from bedtime till morning and this was STILL happening.  And SIL wanted them there even when her DH was home. 

 

Adaline's Mama, to answer your question, her DH took a week off, which was typical for his workplace.  However, he did qualify for FMLA, and seemed to be able to get off whenever he really needed to.  I think that would have been a much better dynamic for them.    Although I'd love a home birth, I've had both in a hospital, but since I don't want to UC, I see medical personnel as a necessary evil.  My midwife stays with her clients who birth without pain relief, so I didn't really have to worry about nursing staff during labor. 

 

Other SIL would have fared much better had it not been for the scene set by her sister and the fact that it all played out on DDs birthday.  Remember, we had no family come for our first child until well into the second month.  So it's kind of hard for us to see what the big deal is sometimes.  There are a couple things she said and planned that I don't think showed the best perspective, but I don't consider her codependent. 



 

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#20 of 22 Old 10-20-2011, 02:41 PM
 
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My SILs don't have kids yet, but I can relate to feeling like my in-laws do soooooooo much more for their daughters and sons-in-law than for DH and I.  I think a lot of it really is cultural.  For instance, SILs have had weddings that cost around 40-50k (puke).  SILs have been given tons of furniture, gifts, etc., when they've bought homes, gotten married, etc.  DH and I obviously did not have our wedding paid for by them at all, which I understand is the custom here.  But then we also didn't receive 1/10th of the gifts, etc. for our wedding nor random gifts over the years like they've gotten.  DH and his sisters all have similar incomes, so it isn't like one person is struggling and that is why they're helping out.  It is just like "well, he's our son, he's a man, he's on his own! time to pamper our little princesses some more."  DH and I joke that we're going to send them a bill one day for all the money they've spent on the girls that they haven't spent on him. 

 

The difference for me is that MIL did want to "help" a lot when DS was born.  This caused nothing but intense conflict.  Were you to actually have help from your in-laws, you might find that it really sucks.  My MIL running around trying to control every aspect of DS's first weeks of life was super stressful.  Your MIL might just be trying really hard not to step on your toes.  You're not her daughter after all, so she may assume that you would not want your MIL up in your business 24/7 like she is with your SILs.  I know I am in that camp....send gifts, yes please, but don't think you can move in and start mothering my baby.  That is my job. I'd consider it a blessing... She must have at least some boundaries.

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#21 of 22 Old 11-02-2011, 10:32 AM
 
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This is my first ever post on this forum, but I had to say that this thread has been life changing for me, it has truly helped me so much. I have an identical situation with my own MIL and SIL and had been been experiencing so many negative emotions and anger about it. Reading what you ladies have written regarding the way firstborns are typically treated versus younger children, and codependent relationships, etc., has absolutely turned my thoughts around toward my MIL and made me realize she was not being INTENTIONAL in most of her hurtful behaviors and that is huge for me....Just wanted to share. smile.gif

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#22 of 22 Old 11-06-2011, 08:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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allthesekids -- Welcome to MDC!  I'm glad my post was so helpful to you.  Such great advice...

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