First of all, I live across the oceans from home, but I communicate almost daily with my aunts, whom I'm closer to, becoz I grew up in my grandma's house since I was 1 month old. I'm not close to my mum. Well, when I found out I was pregnant, we dec'd not to have my mum come again like the first time, becoz it caused a lot of stress, and also, I did not want to feign closeness with my mum. In any case, I just wanted to be alone to enjoy my children and not have to worry abt keeping my mum chatted up and busy when all I wanna do is sleep! Also, she wasn't too supportive of bf'ing and in fact, repeatedly told me I probably won't bf for long becoz women in our family tend to have little breastmilk. And she insisted I gave dd water the first week, and when I didn't want to, she dipped her finger into a cup of water and put it into dd's mouth!!!!!!! I've proven her wrong anyway. dd is 21months and STILL nursing!!
Anyway, my family, though they love me, and of coz they love dd too, have a very diff parenting philosophy. Not exactly anti-AP, but they tend to judge and label (for eg, oh, she sleeps thr the night, GOOD baby!!-- things like that). When I went back last year to visit, I had a stressful time with the criticisms of why I am still bf'ing, why dd is not eating much solids, etc etc etc. I was looking forward to being home but then I wanted to come back to dh after 2 days!! Up till now, they still have to haunt me with how she is not big, tall and heavy enough.
ok, so this time, we told them, we prefer no one to come when I give birth, and we will manage. Then one of my aunts said they have a *brilliant* idea to send dd back to Asia for 3 months abt one month before I deliver, so dh and I can be relieved!!!! URFGH!! horrendous!!! I hated the idea, but I just explained we wanted dd to be at the birth, etc and I got a reply saying, "Oh, we were just teasing, and true enough you came back with a long para of reasons, ha ha ha!" Well, I WAS NOT AMUSED!!! I do not have time typing replies all the time! I'm tired of explaining my parenting philosophy!!!
aNYWAY,I went on to say how I prefer dd not to be separated from us, how the first 3 years were crucial, and that once dd was left with my parents-in-law for 2 hrs and she was really upset, and my aunt replied to say, "oh then it's high time you teach your dd not to be so STICKY!!""
oh, don't they know how to get on my nerves?! 21 month-old being sticky? What abt packageing a 21-month-old on a 22-hr air journey back to Asia so they can have fun with her? I was really fuming!!!! I replied, saying dd is NOT sticky, but independent on the contrary, and she replied saying, oh yeah, nothing negative can be said abt your dd.
I AM SO REALLY UPSET!!! AM I REALLY BEING DEFENSIVE?! I DO NOT THINK SO!! I BELIEVE I SPEAK A LOT OF SENSE NOT WANTING DD TO BE SEPARATED FOR US FOR 3 MONTHS, IN A DIFF CONTINENT, JUST BECOZ ANOTHER BABY IS BEING BORN, MOREOER, SHE IS NOT A BURDEN TO US THAT HAD TO BE RELIEVED! AND DD *IS* INDEPENDENT, I WAS not BEING DISHONEST OR ANYTHING, HOW COME THEY DO NOT UNDERSTAND??!! I'M SO TERRIBLY UPSET!!!
Sorry for screaming into your ears, I'm just terribly terribly upset.....
Let me be the first one to say that you have every reason in the world to be upset with the idiotic comments your family hasmade to you. With comments such as these it might not be that bad that they are in Asia and you live in the USA.
Send your 21 month old to Asia: : : What are they CRAZY???????? My dd is also 21 months and there is no way in this world she would EVER EVER be on the other side of the world without me. NEVER~~~~~~~~~~And as far as her being "sticky", SHE IS A BABY PEOPLE! She needs her mother!
I'm sorry your family is so insensitive to your parenting philosophy. It may be time for you to just tell them exactly what you think and I would not hold back. You are pregnant and you certainly do not need the added stress.
You sound like you are a wonderful mother and know exactly what you want for your family. Your mother's comments may be because she is jealous of the fact you are raising your daughter so incredibly and she was unable to do this herself. That is her problem not yours. My advice is distance yourself and stick to your own way of life. With idiotic comments like this daily, i would stop checking my e-mail .
Hang in there and good luck with your pregnancy Melanie
You don't need any pregnancy stress from these people. I say have your dh pre-screen their emails for you!!
About sending her to Asia-- they do that in India too, so it's not unheard of even though I strongly disagree with the practice. I mean it will be hard enough for your dd to adjust to a new baby without being sent away, and then come back and boom, there's the new baby.
I think it's good that you are far away from your family if they stress you out so much. Don't worry about what people think. Sometimes just put up a wall of silence for awhile if that's what you need to do. I've met you in person and your wonderful dd and I think you are a very sensitive, caring mother.
Then ask them if they'd like a dehydrated slice of it (placenta jerky) so they can partake in your new baby honoring ritual. Reassure them that as long as they eat it while consuming a big glass of breastmilk (which you'll be glad to provide via Airborne Express, fresh and everything) it should taste wonderful.
Betcha don't hear from them for a loooooooooooooooooooong time after that e-mail!
I would just ignore them for a while. Let silence speak for you.
The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it. We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.
Second, I agree with lilyka. Just send them generic emails, no explanations. They don't get it, they will never get it, and all this does is cause you stress and strife between you. Just say "no thanks" to their offers, no explanations. And if they criticize you just say "well, we're happy" or "it works for us" and leave it at that.
I know it's hard, trust me, but I find that these people will just suck the energy right outta ya. They don't care to hear it, so don't waste your time trying to justify the way you parent.
You just go, girl!
Homeschooling, Homesteading Mama to DD ('02) and DS ('04)