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#1 of 8 Old 11-24-2012, 04:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi all~

I need a little advice...hopefully this is the right place, since it's about parents!

Ist's Thanksgiving week, and my parents are expecting my husband, my son, and myself to come over for dinner today. Yep, I waited that long to try to beg off. blush.gif

I don't want to go. I'm 37w4d pregnant, my right leg is swelling (positional issue with the pregnancy, we're working on scooting him around to improve circulation), my dad's a HEAVY smoker, and my mother and I haven't talked in years. This is only important to my dad "this once, this year" because he believes he's ill and this may be "The Last Thanksgiving." Having been in contact with his doctors, I know better - he's confronting mortality due to his age, but he's in no way going to die in the next year due to the medical things he's worried about, as those things don't exist. He's got it in his head that he has certain conditions, and no matter what's disproved, it's still real to him.

 

I don't want to let him down, but I don't want my family to be around all the secondhand smoke, especially my son. Being real, it'll be first-hand smoke too. My dad can't make it through an afternoon/evening without lighting up AND he won't smoke outside - his house, his rules.

I don't want to deal with the stress of my mother, who rides my husband, rides me, purposefully makes interactions hostile, confrontational, tense, and unpleasant, and makes comments about my son.

I don't want to drive an hour one-way for this. I feel like crap, physically, from the pregnancy, and since I'm bloating my mother will make a HUGE deal out of how irresponsible I am to have a homebirth. It's too much. (For various reasons, my husband is not able to drive right now. And my midwife says I'm just fine to birth at home. Plus, this is my second HB.)

Finally, and this is just whining, it's FREEZING, and I have no extra money for gas for this mini-road-trip. Doesn't make the situation appealing.

I've offered to have them at my home, where I can control the smoking - but that was shot down. I will re-offer when I call later, but I'm willing to bet it will be shot down again. The smoking is non-negotiable for him. I've told him I'm uncomfortable with my mother, and he says I need to get over it because it's his holiday (Again, just this once. Because he thinks he might be sick. If the situation with my mother hasn't been resolved in four years, it's not going to be resolved over a poorly cooked dead bird.)

It's a toxic situation, but that's still my dad. I don't want to disappoint or hurt him, because he doesn't handle that well. I don't want to put myself, my son, or my husband in a miserable situation,
either. It's going to be unfair to someone.

 

Does anyone have any ideas as to how I can break this down to him? Compromises I can suggest? Failing that, any excuses that might work? Trust me, I feel bad. I know it's a tough meal to cook, it's an expense on their part, he's opening his home to us, etc etc. I'm not trying to be ungrateful. I'm trying to protect myself and I never learned how to draw an effective line with my family.

Thanks for any help you can offer!


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#2 of 8 Old 11-24-2012, 06:54 AM
 
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Have you already said you'd go? If so, it's a bit rude to back out last minute, and they've probably already cooked & prepared so I'd just suck it up and be more direct & honest next time. If you didn't say you'd come yet, tell them no. Just tell them, "Sorry, we can't make it, it's just not a good time." You don't need excuses or reasons. What are they going to do, drive over & pick you up & drag you there??? You can say no & leave it at that.

Having them at your place seems like a reasonable compromise, and if they aren't willing then they just will have to do without seeing you this time. Another compromise might be to propose a special Thanksgiving with them in 6 months or so, when you're feeling better, and they can meet the new baby, etc.

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
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#3 of 8 Old 11-24-2012, 08:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah...I know it's not the best form to back out last minute. Trust me, I don't feel good about it and you're totally right - the "Crappiest Daughter Of The Year Award" is going to go to me. I grudgingly accepted the invite in the first place, and that was after begging them over to my house instead of having me drive out there. Which they refused.

I'm only grousing about it this morning and looking for an out because I feel physically incapable of being uber-pregnant and dealing with the drive and ensuing stress of being at their home. Usually those things are cope-able, right now it feels like too much.
 


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#4 of 8 Old 11-24-2012, 08:37 AM
 
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Then just tell them you're sick and can't make it. If you had the flu, that's what you'd do, right? It sounds like you are physically & mentally unwell today and just can't do it. That's OK.

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
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#5 of 8 Old 11-24-2012, 11:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SquidMommy View Post

It's a toxic situation, but that's still my dad. I don't want to disappoint or hurt him, because he doesn't handle that well. I don't want to put myself, my son, or my husband in a miserable situation, either. It's going to be unfair to someone.

 

Does anyone have any ideas as to how I can break this down to him? Compromises I can suggest? Failing that, any excuses that might work? Trust me, I feel bad. I know it's a tough meal to cook, it's an expense on their part, he's opening his home to us, etc etc. I'm not trying to be ungrateful. I'm trying to protect myself and I never learned how to draw an effective line with my family.

Thanks for any help you can offer!

 

You've already suggested compromises and offered reasonable excuses I think. A person who puts smoking before your health and spending time with you just doesn't want to see you that badly IMO.

You either go because you don't want to deal with the fall out or you simply tell them you aren't coming and deal with negativity. You could go but minimize the time you are there. It sucks to drive an hour and essentially come right home but at least you'd put in a brief appearance.

It sounds like it will be toxic and no one will be happy even if you do go so I'd just stay home and have a the best day you can and let them be mad on their own.


Kim ~mom to one awesome dd (12)

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#6 of 8 Old 11-25-2012, 01:18 PM
 
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Normally I'd say suck it up, but smoking inside the house is super disgusting. I hope you came up with a nice contagious disease that you, your husband, and your son suddenly came down with.

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#7 of 8 Old 11-25-2012, 01:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, all, for the support and ideas :-) I ended up calling their house and laying some blame at the feet of my midwife (who they will never meet, so it's mostly-okay). My MW really did say the drive was not a good idea, so I went with that, re-invited them to our home, and mentioned that if the smoking were corrected for, visiting wouldn't be so...gross.

They weren't happy, didn't come over to our home, and generally groused about it, but I had a good day and the swelling went WAY down in my leg. I think it was the right decision, and I can't "make" them come over if they don't want to. Again, thanks everyone for your support.


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#8 of 8 Old 11-25-2012, 01:41 PM
 
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Good for you, sounds like you made the right call, glad you had a good day & are feeling a bit better!

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
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