I am sick of having to live with my parents!! - Mothering Forums
Blended and Step Family Parenting > I am sick of having to live with my parents!!
runningwithlola's Avatar runningwithlola 08:39 PM 08-06-2006
I wasn't sure if this is supposed to be in this forum, but I didn't really know where else to put it.

I am so frustrated at my family and husband right now, I just spent the last half hour in the bedroom screaming and crying, in such a rage.

We are stuck living with my parents for now.. we moved out here to be in an area with a better cost of living, but my DH hasnt' been able to find steady work and we've had one bit of horrible financial luck after another, so we are going to be stuck here for quite a bit longer. Probably until next year some time.

The problem is that I am the only one in this house who consistently stands up for what is right for my son. I AM SO SICK OF IT.

I am the only one who consistently makes him brush his teeth. My DH will just sit on the couch watching tv with him until he falls asleep most nights, and never make him brush his teeth. I don't ALWAYS make him brush his teeth at night, sometimes he falls asleep before I realize he's even tired - but I'm pretty much the only person to make sure he gets his teeth brushed. Everyone else just acts like they "forget" it has to be done. They ignore it.

I am the only one who makes sure that whatever he eats for breakfast and lunch is healthy. I make eggs or give him total or another healthy cereal with fruit. My parents make all kinds of crappy foods for breakfast, including buttermilk pancakes with refined flour and sugar and loaded with butter and maple syrup. Or waffles. All the time. Not just once in a while. Nary a vegetable in his eggs or a fruit with anything else. He does not put up a fight about eating healthy foods - he actually loves most of them, and would eat fruit or hummus and broccoli and carrots all day if I let him. But they just don't give any healthy foods to him despite my constant pleading.

I am the only one who is vigilant about what he is witness to on tv. I don't even want him watching tv at all, but there are a couple shows I will allow him to watch once in a great while. Unfortunately the rest of my family including my DH are tv addicts - they will literally just sit in front of the tv for hours every day - and use very little discretion as far as what they will watch or not in front of him. My dad will just turn on the military channel, whatever is on it. They just don't care enough to not watch whatever it is they want to watch because he's still awake or nearby. It's more important for them to do what they want than to do what is best for him. They say things like, "he's not watching it though!" when he's right there. I'm sick of having to be the bad guy and say "that is not appropriate for him." "any violence is not ok" "do you really think you should be watching a show about the nazis in front of him?"

My whole point is that I'm sick of being the one who's always the bad guy.

And my parents (who are EXPERT manipulators, they don't even realize they're doing it anymore) absolutely refuse to be the bad guy, at all costs. So my son always wants to be with them and whines around them and they put up with it, and he acts worse and worse until finally I lose my temper.

My mom is a great example of this. I used to get irritated at her all the time because she would feed him garbage. I asked her repeatedly not to give him certain things. She doesn't understand why I don't want him living on graham crackers and milk. Or yogurt. Those are the only three things she wants to offer him.
Once I realize that she wasn't going to make good choices for him if it meant having to be the bad guy, I started butting in and saying, "no, he can't have more yogurt, he already had some today".

So now, when he asks for it, instead of having to be the bad guy, and say no, she says either, "mommy, can he have some more yogurt?" or "you'll have to ask mommy if you can have some" thereby FORCING ME to be the bad guy as usual. Or, even worse, she'll say, "MOmmy says you can't have any more of this."

I am SO SICK OF THIS. It's ruining my relationship with my son and with them. My son is always mad at me because I'm the only one from whom he hears 'no'. If I say no then he runs back to grandma and grandpa. I know they want to spoil him, but they're always telling me how I have to compromise since we're living here, and they're not compromising at all! They refuse to do anything that might upset him, so he's just upset at me.

It's a horrible cycle and I have tried to talk to them about it, but they just DON'T GET IT. My mom doesnt' understand why it angers me when she says "ask mommy" or "mommy says", when she fully knows the answer. She can't see how damaging that is or why it bothers me. She thinks I can't see through the manipulation. She will ask me the dumbest questions, FULLY KNOWING what the answer is going to be, so she doesn't have to be the one to say no. I am so irritated at her all the time because I see through her little games and I don't fall for them. I'm angry that she thinks I can't see through this stupidity.

My parents can't see the connection between love and making the right choices for him. They think he will only love them if they let him do whatever he wants.

This is not to say that i am super militant over protective overbearing hovering controlling kind of mom. I really pretty much let him do his own thing, explore, play, as long as he's not hurting himself, anyone else, or damaging things. I want him to have fun.

But these (teeth, tv, healthy food, setting boundaries and following through) are obviously important issues for me, on which I am not willing to budge. And they are not willing to take them on as well.

Oh, great example. This is what set me off.

first of all, let me say that I was unhappy to begin with, because
- we were supposed to go to this party with my parents BUT
- I only have one pair of pants that fit me right now (5 months PG, no $$ for maternity clothes) AND
- my DH wasn't paying attention to what he was doing and when my son peed his pants, DH dropped the wet underwear onto my pants which had fallen on the floor of the closet, so I could not wear them, meaning that
- I had absolutely no pants or any other bottoms that I could wear to this party, so I couldnt' go.
SO I was already very irritated and actually quite upset. Not that my son peed his pants, he was busy playing outside and forgot to go, it happens.. but I am angry that I have literally nothing to wear and no way to go to this party now.

My mom bought a big map that you can use to collect those state quarters, and told my son that after they got back from the party, the two of them would get the map out and play with it. He asked if he could get it out right away.
She said no (*gasp!*)
He asked again, again she said no.

So he went over to the bag and took the map out. She asked him to put it back in the bag please?
He said no.
She said they would play with it when she got home.
He said, I want to play with it now, and started trying to take the wrapper off of it.
She refuses to be the bad guy, so instead of doing anything about this, she just pretended to ignore the situation, and walked away, went upstairs.

Leaving me to enforce. I told him that grandma said no, and that means he needs to put the map back now, they can play with it when grandma and grandpa get home. He ran to the drawer and got out a glue stick. I got up and started walking to the map to put it away. He took the glue stick and pressed it onto the wrapping of the map, into a coin hole, and I told him no. I told him that he needs to go put the gluestick away , because I said no. He refused and ran away into the other room. I waited for him to come back, and walked him to the drawer and had him put the glue stick away.
My mom just pretended that none of this was happening. Her usual approach. She absolutely does everything in her power to avoid confrontation with anyone.

While I was having him put the glue stick away, my son hit me. He gets an automatic time out for hitting, so I put him in time out. He began to scream at me.

That's when I lost my temper completely. I screamed at him and then went upstairs to scream and bang a hanger against a pillow.

I hate, hate, hate this situation. I know I could have handled this better, but I am just so on edge all the time, the littlest things set me off. I am so angry that I'm the one who has to enforce everything. I am so angry that I'm the only one who consistently tries to make the best choices for him. I hate that I'm the only one who doesn't try to get away with never being the bad guy.

The worst thing about this is that my son has become so accustomed to the way they let him get away with things, his behavior around them has gotten absolutely horrible. They put up with his whining, when it's so easy to get him to stop, by either reminding him that whining is not an appropriate way to get what he wants, or by modeling how I want him to say it without whining. I'll just say, "please talk to me like this: mommy, can I have some milk?" and he will calm down and say it that way. It's SO EASY. But they won't do it. They just giv ehim whatever he wants to stop the whining.

So it's as if the second they walk into the door, he begins whining.

They went on vacation for just over two weeks, and it was heavenly. Just the 3 of us in the house again and he quit whining. We had fun. He is such a sweet and agreeable little kid - very reasonable.. 99 times out of 100, if I explain the logic of the situation to him, he is EXTREMELY cooperative - I get so many compliments on him!
My parents came back and within 24 hours we were wondering what happened to our son again.

But my parents can't seem to see the connection between the way they are around him, and the way he is around them. I'm sick of trying ot explain it all to them. They aren't interested. They just want to be the good guy no matter what. They refuse to see how letting him get away with more and more and more little baby steps over the boundaries just makes it more difficult to enforce ANY boundaries AT ALL!!

They are always telling us that we need to do this and that, and make sure we do more than our share around the house, because this is a somewhat communal living situation. I put up with it despite the fact that they're horribly disorganized packrats with clutter everywhere, and we're neat and clean, even with toys, and we end up doing a lot of cleaning up after them. But the 'doing your share' part only applies to us, apparently, because despite the fact that we've talked about how we all need to look out for my son and take care of him, they refuse to actually do that.
I understand that they're not his parents, and I don't expect them to be, but before we moved here I had a long talk with them about us moving in with them, and what that would mean, and we all agreed that it's important for me to have a break now and then, so as long as we are all in the house, we are all responsible to some degree for his upbringing.. and they're not holding up their end of it, just so that he won't ever get upset with them. ARGH!!!!



I am so frustrated because we are absolutely stuck here and I feel completely powerless.

I really am so frustrated, depressed, hopeless, angry.
I actually hate waking up right now.
Every day I wake up and I'm pretty much in a grumpy mood by default.
I just want to get out of here!
There are also many other things that I am extremely angry about right now.. without getting into it (this is long enough) I am depressed about my appearance.. our lack of any money (we have to ask my parents for gas money just to go to my prenatal appointments)... DH's refusal to take action regarding the situation with his "ex" wife and their divorce/custody.
So I am just a basket case right now.

It's not healthy.

Sometimes I wonder if I should just check myself into a mental institution. I wish I was kidding. I've been having to put up with this since mid-December. Now throw PG hormones into the mix and I'm a bomb waiting to go off.
I feel terrible that I took this all out on my son today.

I don't want ot be here anymore... I wish I could just take my son and run away somewhere.
And live with a whole bunch of other mamas who get the ideals under which I am trying to raise my son.

mamachandi's Avatar mamachandi 08:58 PM 08-06-2006

oh dear I actually read the whole thing! That would frustrate me to no end. I could not live with my paremts as they act so similar to yours. Could you move to a one br apartment? maybe he (dh)could work some kind of job,until the one he wants or something else comes up?
runningwithlola's Avatar runningwithlola 10:28 PM 08-06-2006
I wish there was something we can do, but we can't and my hands are totally tied, which is why I'm so frustrated.

We have not a single dollar to our name. Our bank account has been seized, we're so behind on the car the only reason they haven't repossessed it yet is b/c they don't know where we live. We can't even afford gas or groceries, let alone an apartment. DH can't find a job, anywhere. His last job wasn't even enough to make car payments, let alone anything else - and he had to work so much he didn't have time to do a real job search for something else. We have to pay $4000 in back CS before we can get our bank account back again. We are 100% totally dependent on my parents right now.

I feel like I'm in hell.
srain's Avatar srain 10:57 PM 08-06-2006
It sounds like things are bad enough for you there that you need to leave. If living there were not an option, what would you do? Has your husband applied at McDonald's? With tree services? Housepainters? There's temp work (you could probably get hired as a temp yourself despite your pregnancy); public assistance; staying with other friends/ family- for that matter, it'll be warm enough at least through September to camp out, and two months away from your parents may be better than nothing. Even if you decide to keep living there, you can find other places to be for much of the day, so the rest of the family does not undermine your relationship with your son.

While your parents really have the right to behave however they please, it seems like you may want to talk to your husband about getting on the same page regarding childrearing values and responsibilities. If you think it's bad now, think how much worse it will be when your baby's born, if he's not going to improve.
trinity6232000's Avatar trinity6232000 07:09 AM 08-10-2006
Oh Mama I really understand (don't you hate when people say that ) what your going threw right now. While I was
pregnant I moved back in with my parents. My Mother was ill, not expected to live long, and I couldn't allow my Dad to
have to care for her himself. My move here was suppose to be temporary. 7 years later, I am still living here, still helping.
Thing is you might have to let go of some of the feelings you are feeling while your living in your parents home, or you
might drive yourself crazy. I started therapy while living in my parents home, I was under so much stress.

If I didn't live here dd's life would be different. My parenting isn't different, but many of the issues I had with my parents
wouldn't be a daily thing. Many times my Dad will be making himself a snack, and offer some to dd. Foods I wouldn't
have in my own home. My Dad often will be frustrated with dd when she acts up, which is pretty often, she demands a
lot of attention, is very spirited. So I know what it feels like to step in and be the "bad guy". I have had to get used to
being the "bad guy" because I am the only parent in the home. I made a snack drawl in the fridge for dd. I fill it with
sandwich baggy filled with carrots or other healthy snacks that dd enjoys and picks for herself at the store. She also
has a rubbermaid container filled with snacks that don't have to be in the fridge. Sometimes Pap-pap and her will enjoy
some potato chips while the watch tv together. Sometimes they enjoy each others company outside building something and
then eat carrots from the garden. I have learned to pick my battles, and to let a lot roll off my back.

Many of my issues with being in my parents home were things I couldn't have any control over. Like my parents are also
packrats. But this is their home, and I am a visitor, not my right to change or hold them responsible for. I have over the
years offered my help to clean up much of their home. Go threw boxes of crap my Mother bought over the years, and such.
Since you will not be there long, it's just another thing to allow to roll off your back. Also with the tv situation. You might
have to do an activity with your son in another room if the tv show is something you don't want your son to watch. It's
your Dad's right to watch what he wants. It would be nice for him to think about the fact that your ds is in the room, but that
isn't exactly his job.

When you say "But these (teeth, tv, healthy food, setting boundaries and following through) are obviously important issues
for me, on which I am not willing to budge. And they are not willing to take them on as well."

I felt this way too. I had to come to terms with being in a living situation that wasn't what I had planned on. I thought about
moving out for a period of time, but instead I had to make changes in myself not try to change my parents.

The issues you named those are important issues to you but as grandparents don't have to be their issues as well.
Making sure your son brushes his teeth, this is a conversation that you need to have with your dh.

I'm not posting this to make you feel like your feelings aren't valid. I am posting this because I wish somebody had saved
my time by giving me the same advice seven years ago. This is a time period of your life, and dh, ds, and yourself will have
your lives back the way you planned. For now while you wait out the money problems, give everybody a break, and save
your sanity.

In my own situation I have chosen to look at the positive sides rather than the negatives. This is why I have stayed. I really love
my parents, and I have gained a new relationship with both of them living in their home as an adult, rather than the child. My dd
has a really strong bond with both of my parents that grows everyday that they have each other. I didn't have that with my grand-
parents at all so dd's lucky to have that in her life. I only have to work part time from home since I don't have to pay rent. I am
able to be a SAHM because of that fact. My dd is now going into kindergarten and I will work more. I would have had to be a
fulltime worker without the help of my parents.

Because I have been here longer than you plan on being at your parents home we have become a team. I don't always like the
choices my Dad makes with my dd. I don't totally agree with how I was raised myself. But there are no other two people in my
life who adore each other more than my dd and my Father. So instead of being steamed about the potato chips. I look at the bond
instead.

Give yourself a break. Leave the house with ds once a day and take a walk. Don't drive your self nutty. Another
Blu Razzberri's Avatar Blu Razzberri 10:46 AM 10-04-2006
UGH...I didn't read all your post...I couldn't!

When my boy was about 3 months old, we (ex and I) were forced to move in with his mother because he had more debt than income (long story short).

We moved from a two bedroom apartment into a small spare bedroom, all three of us, crib and all. And to make matters worse, his mother never liked me from the start.

I'm a very private person, and she'd be in my room all the time because of the baby. Now, she loves the baby; but DAMMIT she's annying as all hell with her stupid singsongy highpitched voice acting like she hadn't seen the baby for weeks when it was only minutes. She'd do this despite me asking ex to ask her to let us have our space. Eventually, I just never left the room..which was very frustrating, and as baby grew bigger, it got worse.

After about a year, I reached my breaking point. I couldn't do it anymore. I said to ex "I'm leaving. You can come with me or stay here, you choose, but I'm not staying!" and I moved into a 1-bedroom a week later. Ex came with us, but the relationship was too far gone and he moved back three months later.

I feel your pain in a big big way!
Cherryblsm's Avatar Cherryblsm 08:20 PM 10-04-2006
Hey, I am in similar situation except for it has now been 3 yrs. We live on my in laws property and we really can't be ingrateful but life with having a new baby with them was hell. I felt like I couldn't be the mom because my mil constantly making me feel bad saying she never saw dd and crossing the boundaries all the time. It would kill me to have to share the same house with my inlaws so I don't know how you can do it. You got to get out of there!! I know you can't though, as for us we cannot afford to even rent an apt aswell. You are trapped, like I am and it is very depressing and just gets worse. I am so sorry I don't have better words but the only thing you HAVE to do is get on a payment schedule that your hubby can do so that you guys can get out of there, otherwise 1 yr turns in to 3yrs then....who knows..? You will just get more depressed and more resentful. As for your parents making you feel bad and always be the bad guy try not to take it personal and say something like " I am the mom and I have to watch out for your health that is my job" to your son. Sounds like there may be some butting of heads from your parents on your wishes. I know that story, just continue to be firm and not take it personal. It is your job and your right to be the mom but I would have your husband also take an active role in that too. It simply can't be just you . Again I am sorry about your situation and I do hope it gets better.
Sharon, RN's Avatar Sharon, RN 07:30 AM 10-08-2006
Dear Running,

I so feel your pain. I lived with my ex in-laws from 1999-2005 (even typing it out seems strange- it was so long!) I moved in the 6 weeks after my son was born, as we (my husband, son, and I) were basically homeless. I moved out the day my now ex-husband laid his hands on me. So, I became homeless again. For 6 months I had to find places for my son and I to live while still taking him to school and while I still had to finish nursing school. It all completely sucked.

I survived the room, the clutter, the crazy gradma thing. I wasn't happy about living there, but I did what I had to do, to protect my son and myself. It was hard, but I made it work as best I could. It finally took my husband getting physical with me to realize that things were never never going to change. I knew I had to leave then, no matter what, to reclaim my life.

And I did. I have my own place and I raise my son the way I believe in. It's not perfect, nothing ever is. But I feel SO much better now.

I don't want to scare you. And feel free to pm me if you want more details about how I did it, etc... I don't want to hijack your post. But you feel helpless and you're not. There is always an answer, always a way. Not easy, no, but you can do it. You will learn to change the situation, because the situation won't change for you. Once you can find that strength you need, then you will reclaim your life, too.

I believe in you.
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