Grandma and Grandma, and what they call"the baby".. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 03:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So I'm wondering since I'm a first time mom..

My mom referred to the baby as "her baby" yesterday she said.. "My baby" when talking about the baby. I told her in a joking way "Your grandbaby" and asked her not to say my baby that it was kinda weird for some reason ( I said this all very friendly)..I mean it just bothered me a little hearing her say "my baby" Im not sure why but it did.

I'm guessing Im just having issues because I feel so sick, the babies not here yet, and it sure is taking a lot of work to make this baby and a lot of pain. Was I weird to let it bother me? I didn't make a huge deal out of it, but then she did. She acted like I was so weird for not liking the phrase. I told her its not a big deal, I just dont like it. (Said in serious but, friendly tone to her of course) She told me she was going to call it her baby any way, and kind of went on and on about it(her not me.. I just was quiet). Then we talked about something else.


It's really not a "big deal" I guess I just dont like the way she made it a big deal. I just didnt like it, isnt that okay? Be open and honest, I'm in such a funk and wondering if thats why it bothered me so much. It might just be the way she dragged it out that bothered me, I'm not really sure.
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#2 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 03:38 PM
 
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First of all, SOOOOOOOOOOO many grandparents react the same way and say the exact same thing. It's strangely common.

Second of all, you totally weren't wrong in your reaction to it. This is your baby, not hers. She already had her babies and now this one is being carried around inside of your body.

I would reiterate with her that no matter how strange she thinks you're being (which it seems like she did), if you're the person carrying the baby then you're the one who gets to make the decisions regarding how the baby is referred to. You don't want it called her baby, then it shouldn't be. One of the really fun things about being pregnant is that you actually get to be in charge of that kind of stuff and people don't question you about it too much ... they know we're more likely to bite their heads off than usual!

unbelievably proud mother to Darwin 11-22-2006
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#3 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 03:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks. I mean it's not like I'm mad about it, it just seemed "odd" I figured it might be common though. I know I should "Pick my battles" too haha
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#4 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 03:59 PM
 
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My MIL used to do that compulsively. After our first ds was born, every time we'd show up at their house for a visit she'd crow "MY BABY IS HERE!!!!!" and snatch him and run off with him. It drove me nuts for a long time and I finally erupted, saying something like "funny, I can't seem to recall you birthing him...", which was excessive and a little rude, but SHEESH! I hate when people try to interlope where my children are concerned. You are right on the money to deal with the situation NOW rather than LATER, when apart from being a little irked you're downright PEED OFF. No time like the present for taking care of stuff, right>?
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#5 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 05:38 PM
 
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You aren't wrong for being upset. It's a tricky situation to be in because the grandmothers-to-be get really excited about the new baby coming but at the same time it is the new mom-to-be's job to set boundaries. You are going from being her baby to becoming a mother yourself and some moms have a hard time letting go and realizing that their child is now an adult.

If it makes you uncomfortable then you are right to say something about it now. I would be uncomfortable with my mother calling my son her baby - but my mother is very controlling and that is part of the reason it bothers me. I found it best to set boundaries early on and stick to them. Our relationship is a lot better off now because of that.

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#6 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 06:43 PM
 
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My Mom refers to all of my children as The Babies or My Babies and I really don't care at least she asks which is more than you can say for many Grandparents.

Keri

 Keri wife and Mama to  Cory 17,  Brendan 15,  Kerianne 8,  Avery 7,  Lilia 3
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#7 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 06:48 PM
 
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my mother does this and it drives me nuts. she says "my baby!!" or "our baby" no- she's my baby, and DH's baby, not yours or anyone else's. and I very rarely call dd "my baby"- it seems oddly possessive.

one time when dd was in the hospital and my mom and I were disagreeing about her care, my mom said the "our baby" thing and I said, no, she's MY baby. but, she still says it. : oh btw get used to the grandparents getting on your nerves, that is, if your family is anything like mine!

DD1 7/13/05 DD2 9/20/10
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#8 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 06:53 PM
 
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my mom calls and says 'how are our babies?' or something like that. Doesn't bother me...the whole 'it takes a village' thing. If she's talking directly to them, she (and MIL and my siblings, etc) might say 'how's my little baby'. Again, not a big deal. I'm fortunate to have so many people there to love them.

Actually, with my first, it did bother me. I was pretty um, territorial, I guess. It was MY baby, MY way, etc. As I've gotten older, I've relaxed a bit, once i realized we weren't in a pissing contest to see who loved the kids more. They all recognize that I am mom and no one can replace me, so they can call the kids whatever they want. Now, if I thought they had other motives, I'd be upset and address the issue.

However, what I think about my situation and how I handle it doesn't invalidate how you feel and how you handle your situation. You do what is best for you and your family.

Michelle -mom to Katlyn 4/00 , Jake 3/02, and Seth 5/04
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#9 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 07:31 PM
 
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I admit that kind of stuff ticks me off too. I don't think my mom has ever said "my baby" but she has overstepped her boundaries. It happens. I agree with the pp who said mama needs to set the boundaries. With my first baby there were one or two times I remember family members overstepping their boundaries but I did not say anything. I wish I had because I still have not let go of the little grievance.
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#10 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 08:17 PM
 
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Both my and dh's mom referred to our first as "my baby." They have been a lot less possessive this time around. I guess the novelty wore off or something. I have been thankful to have more breathing room this time around, though.

Hang in there!
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#11 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 08:43 PM
 
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I think if I had been in a mood and something like that happened and I was irritated, I wouldn't have been as nice. I'd be more like: 'excuse me, YOUR baby? he/she is MY baby" -like i said, you were probably much nicer about then I would have been.
But, then again, I've been surpisingly laid back so far... we'll see when the baby actually arrives.
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#12 of 19 Old 11-11-2006, 10:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kerikadi View Post
My Mom refers to all of my children as The Babies or My Babies and I really don't care at least she asks which is more than you can say for many Grandparents.

Keri
: I'm just so thankful that my MIL and my mom want to have a close relationship with my kids. I think it enriches all of our lives immensely, even if everything they do isn't exactly how I'd do it. I'd rather have them around doing something that not care at all!

Jesse, wife to DH , mama to DD 13, DS 11, DS 8, DD 6, DS 3 & bean EDD 12/18/13
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#13 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 02:33 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kibba View Post
So I'm wondering since I'm a first time mom..

My mom referred to the baby as "her baby" yesterday she said.. "My baby" when talking about the baby. I told her in a joking way "Your grandbaby" and asked her not to say my baby that it was kinda weird for some reason ( I said this all very friendly)..I mean it just bothered me a little hearing her say "my baby" Im not sure why but it did.

I'm guessing Im just having issues because I feel so sick, the babies not here yet, and it sure is taking a lot of work to make this baby and a lot of pain. Was I weird to let it bother me? I didn't make a huge deal out of it, but then she did. She acted like I was so weird for not liking the phrase. I told her its not a big deal, I just dont like it. (Said in serious but, friendly tone to her of course) She told me she was going to call it her baby any way, and kind of went on and on about it(her not me.. I just was quiet). Then we talked about something else.


It's really not a "big deal" I guess I just dont like the way she made it a big deal. I just didnt like it, isnt that okay? Be open and honest, I'm in such a funk and wondering if thats why it bothered me so much. It might just be the way she dragged it out that bothered me, I'm not really sure.
I went through the same thing with my MIL. If it bothers you that much, you need to talk to your DH about it. This is his thing to deal with. My DH was very supportive of my feelings, and had a serious talk with his mom. He gave her the impression that it bothered him more than me. She also wanted our son to call her grandMAMA. That made me fume. It irked my DH to no end as well. She kept calling herself grandMAMA and he looked at her one day and said "GrandMAMA is a stupid ass name mom, you are not Kai's MAMA, Angie is...you're Nana, embrace it"...and Nana it is to this day. After Kai was born, she'd call him her baby...and as much as it irked me, I got over it, and she stopped calling him that at some point.
What I take issue with in your case, is the fact that you MIL is deliberately being insensitive toward you. Her defiant attitude is juvenile. If she wants to refer to the baby as hers while you aren't around, then fine! However, she CAN refrain from saying it around you. It really is your DHs OBLIGATION to deal with this issue.
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#14 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 03:54 PM
 
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my mom calls and says 'how are our babies?' or something like that. Doesn't bother me...the whole 'it takes a village' thing. If she's talking directly to them, she (and MIL and my siblings, etc) might say 'how's my little baby'. Again, not a big deal. I'm fortunate to have so many people there to love them.

However, what I think about my situation and how I handle it doesn't invalidate how you feel and how you handle your situation. You do what is best for you and your family.

ITA! I think it is a casual expression of love used by many and like a pp said, grandparents will drive you crazy in general with advice, comments, etc . - if you let it. First time moms are ultra sensitive I think to what people say. MY DS is 9 and I pick my battles. I doubt that a grandparent is calling a baby "my baby" with the meaning that they believe the baby is actually theirs and that they delivered the baby and they are the bosses of the baby. Just an expression like my sweetheart, my bundle of joy, my (insert a loving expression).

Mom to DS (16), DD (7), DS (5), and excitedenergy.gif about my final baby due October 2014. Love fluffy mailheartbeat.gif, appreciate midwives, and can't wait to wear a baby againjoy.gif!
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#15 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 04:07 PM
 
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She also wanted our son to call her grandMAMA. That made me fume. It irked my DH to no end as well. She kept calling herself grandMAMA and he looked at her one day and said "GrandMAMA is a stupid ass name mom, you are not Kai's MAMA, Angie is...you're Nana, embrace it"...and Nana it is to this day. .
Why is the term grandmama offensive? Grandmother is an actual word and a title. In my world, there are more people called grandma, grandmother, grandmama, granny than nana. In fact, my mom chose nana because grandmother made her sound old. Did your MIL think she was being rude and disrespectful by having her grandchild refer to her as what is technically her title? Just curious...what is the grandfather, grandpa, grandaddy, grandad called?

Mom to DS (16), DD (7), DS (5), and excitedenergy.gif about my final baby due October 2014. Love fluffy mailheartbeat.gif, appreciate midwives, and can't wait to wear a baby againjoy.gif!
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#16 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 04:38 PM
 
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Why is the term grandmama offensive? Grandmother is an actual word and a title. In my world, there are more people called grandma, grandmother, grandmama, granny than nana. In fact, my mom chose nana because grandmother made her sound old. Did your MIL think she was being rude and disrespectful by having her grandchild refer to her as what is technically her title? Just curious...what is the grandfather, grandpa, grandaddy, grandad called?
The emphacy on MAMA is there because she very strongly used the word "mama" and not GRANDmama. I didn't like it at all...especially when she refered to herself as MAMA to my son right after he was born. IMO she was overstepping her boundaries by leaps and bounds. This is the same woman who argued with DH and I about child care. In a nutshell, (she insisted on helping with childcare while I worked part time) She wanted our son to be at her house 8 hours a day, 4 days a week and *demanded* that I pump for her to feed my son. When we explained that a) we didn't need that much child care b) we wanted her to come to our house and c) I wouldn't be pumping, she flipped out and refuse to help us out. I work 1 mile from home. I would either come home to nurse, or have her come to my shop so I could nurse. She just couldn't understand why I had an aversion to pumping. In the end, she came to our house 2 days a week for the 3 hours per day that I needed of child care. I also genuinely had a hard time pumping....I just couldn't get a let down everytime. She ffed my DH, so she just didn't have the capacity to understrand the nursing thing.
Now, Kai goes to her house once a week for time with her, regardless of whether or not I need the childcare. We also visit on the weekends, and she has him over night once in a while. They talk on the phone regularly as well. Her and Kai have a wonderful relationship and I value their relationship greatly!

My mom is "grandma", my MIL is "nana". My dad is "grandpa" and my FIL is "papa". My grandmother who I call granny is "G.G."
My MIL likes being called nana because it's more personal to her (and because her son gave it to her) than the generic title of grandma. My mom is grandma to my son because she rarely sees him (her choice). He gave the name "papa" to my FIL on his own...he adores his papa. My dad lives out of state so he is refered to as grandpa since they don't have much of a relationship.

Sorry for the long wided response.
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#17 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 04:54 PM
 
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I don't think their words before the birth matter so much as their actions afterward. It could be a sign of a problem, or it might just be that they're excited.

I do think that it's a good idea to start laying some boundries before the baby arrives so that there isn't as much potential for problems. You don't have to get in her face or anything, but as certain topics come up, just let her know what you're planning on doing. For instance, I let my mom know that I'd need help with cooking and cleaning after the baby was born--not baby care. A few months before my baby was born, a daughter of my mom's friend gave birth, and my mom and her friend were both scandalized that the lady wouldn't give the baby formula until her milk came in. : I told my mom to start getting used to that idea because we were doing the same thing, and I explained a little of the reasoning behind it (milk comes in faster if you don't supplement, and babies weren't designed to need a lot of food the first few days of life anyway).
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#18 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 05:53 PM
 
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My parents and my IL's both do this - not maliciously at all. It doesnt botehr me in the least when its my parents, it doesnt really bother me when its the IL's except a teeny bit. LOL So maybe how we react is more a sign of the relationship. I know my friends MIL does this and it infuriates her.
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#19 of 19 Old 11-12-2006, 11:59 PM
 
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The emphacy on MAMA is there because she very strongly used the word "mama" and not GRANDmama. I didn't like it at all...especially when she refered to herself as MAMA to my son right after he was born. IMO she was overstepping her boundaries by leaps and bounds. This is the same woman who argued with DH and I about child care. In a nutshell, (she insisted on helping with childcare while I worked part time) She wanted our son to be at her house 8 hours a day, 4 days a week and *demanded* that I pump for her to feed my son. When we explained that a) we didn't need that much child care b) we wanted her to come to our house and c) I wouldn't be pumping, she flipped out and refuse to help us out. I work 1 mile from home. I would either come home to nurse, or have her come to my shop so I could nurse. She just couldn't understand why I had an aversion to pumping. In the end, she came to our house 2 days a week for the 3 hours per day that I needed of child care. I also genuinely had a hard time pumping....I just couldn't get a let down everytime. She ffed my DH, so she just didn't have the capacity to understrand the nursing thing.
Now, Kai goes to her house once a week for time with her, regardless of whether or not I need the childcare. We also visit on the weekends, and she has him over night once in a while. They talk on the phone regularly as well. Her and Kai have a wonderful relationship and I value their relationship greatly!

My mom is "grandma", my MIL is "nana". My dad is "grandpa" and my FIL is "papa". My grandmother who I call granny is "G.G."
My MIL likes being called nana because it's more personal to her (and because her son gave it to her) than the generic title of grandma. My mom is grandma to my son because she rarely sees him (her choice). He gave the name "papa" to my FIL on his own...he adores his papa. My dad lives out of state so he is refered to as grandpa since they don't have much of a relationship.

Sorry for the long wided response.
THanks for clearing that up. I was just wondering. It sounds like she might have been a little overbearing at first. I didn't catch why the MAMA was written in all caps in your original post.

Mom to DS (16), DD (7), DS (5), and excitedenergy.gif about my final baby due October 2014. Love fluffy mailheartbeat.gif, appreciate midwives, and can't wait to wear a baby againjoy.gif!
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