How to tell non-supportive parents/in-laws - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-05-2009, 03:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We're trying to figure out the best way to tell my in-laws about the upcoming baby. They are the only ones, relative or not, who don't know yet. They live an hour away so it's been easy not telling them, and I'm hardly showing at the moment, so it's been easy (we do see them about once a month).

DP wants to tell them after the end of the 1st trimester. What's the best way to go about it?

For some background, they are VERY religious Christians, they think we're going to hell, etc. They do the whole "love the sinner hate the sin" thing. They are very sweet people if you can pretend they accept you, lol. Honestly if it were up to me they wouldn't really be in our lives b/c they refuse to call DP male pronouns (he's trans) and they had a really difficult time allowing my daughter to call them grandma and grandpa, since a) DP and I have not been together since DD's birth, and b) b/c since we're queer, they aren't related to DD, and therefore we aren't seen as family.

Any tips here? We feel like they may be angry b/c we are, according to them, bringing a child into a sinful family.

Obviously we don't give a rat's bottom what they think of our family, but DP does really seek their support (it's really sad to see sometimes how they hurt him).

Partnered mama with DD (01/04) and DD (08/09) and 8 critters, including a !
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Old 02-06-2009, 04:13 AM
 
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my parental units are the exact same way - hate the sinner, love the sin on the evangelical christian tip.

interestingly, they are very excited about the baby because "babies are a blessing from god". so much that my mom wanted to attend the birth (i told her no) but couldn't come to our wedding because she didn't believe in what we were doing.

since it's DP's parents and he wants to wait until after the first trimester, i think you should go with that. perhaps he has good reason to do so. i didn't tell my own mother until i was 16 or so weeks. she was upset at the late notice, but i needed time to deal with my emotions about what could be the potential fall out from telling her. i simply told her in conversation that i was on my way to my xzy week appointment - i actually told her over the phone. i felt that was better than telling her in person. if she had an adverse reaction, i could hang up.

ultimately, i feel like over the phone was the best way. it allows you to shield yourself from hateful comments or looks of disappointment more than you could by telling in person. if you think they are going to be particularly negative, then even a letter or text message may be more appropriate.

for me, i don't want their negativity in my life, so i try to keep them at a comfortable distance for my mental sanity. either way, totally defer to DP and how he wants to handle things. he knows his parents best. i'm thankful my partner let me hold out on telling my parents as long as i did - i just didn't want to face the fall out until i was ready to do so.

giggle - mommy to GP born 3.16.09 and parter to liberty (GP's mama). hoping to have 2 under 2 in the very near future via DP's ute!
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Old 02-08-2009, 12:51 PM
 
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We're not there yet, exactly. But it is something we are already planning for/thinking about, b/c neither side will be particularly pleased about it, so if you don't mind my input...

We're doing the I'll choose how/when to tell my family, and Kim can choose how/when to tell her family type of thing. Per my preference, we will be waiting until I am (at least) 15 weeks (Kim can wait longer, if she wants) to tell either side though. We live out of state from both families, so a bit of a wait will be fairly easy for us.

Kim has not decided how she will tell.

I (think) I am going to use an idea I picked up elsewhere. I will write them a short and sweet letter, that will basically say:

Quote:
Dear Loving Family Member :,

Hope this letter finds you well. We really enjoyed our last visit. Blah, blah, blah your weather, blah, blah, blah our weather.

Anyway, I am writing today because Kim and I are very excited to announce that we are expecting a much anticipated and : planned for around DATE. We are thankful that the pregnancy is going well (hopefully we can add this part!). We look forward to seeing you when we come to visit on DATE. Meanwhile, we look forward to hearing from you when you can call to give us your congratulations! ()

By the way, , how 'bout that football team??

Much love ,
Courtney
I like this approach cause it means I don't have to interact in real time with them. It gives them time to come to grips with things before they have to deal with me. And, I think, it makes it clear that there is only one reaction we are interested in getting from them. If they can't respond in a positive manner, that is ok! But in that case, they can keep their negative thoughts/feeling to themselves.

Like I said, I (obviously) haven't tried it yet. But hearing about it really made me think it would be a good fit for *my* family. It probably depends on the family. YMMV. Good luck!!
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