Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Trying to release my cows..Join Me!
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My mother passed away when my kids were 4 and 6, but she was very very close to them and a big part of our lives. I was raised 75% by my mom (they divorced when I was an infant or when she was preg even I cant remember.) but I knew my dad and saw him on holidays, various weekends, and 3 weeks or better in the summer. Your mostly typical divorced parent visitation schedule.
My dad and I werent what I would call close really, but I knew he loved me and I loved him. We were very alike, and yet very different. (My mom raised me totally differently than he would have.) At first my dad had a very hard time with my kids... especially with my Ds. My Dad is one who thinks young kids should listen and that is it, no questions or "back talk" to adults etc. We have taken a very different route for our kids and he didn't understand it.
We have lived within a few hours of my dad and his wife for all my kids' lives with a few short term exceptions along the way. As the kids have gotten older, and as my dad has mellowed out a little, they have developed a nice relationship. He still doesn't always understand our ways, but he has tried to be tolerant of them. I like that my kids know him and enjoy visiting.
I think the bottom line is how comfortable you and your Dh are with setting some kind of boundaries and being firm with your parents about what you want for your kids... and about what you will not put up with. If they are good people underneath all the little disagreements then it's not so bad. If they are really unpleasant and disrespectful it's probably not something you want to head into. My in-laws are mostly out of state, and as much as it hurts my Dh sometimes, this is mostly good. They tend to be racist, sexist, and two faced. It's not what I look for in relationships of any kind.
"The true measure of a man is how he treats a man who can do him absolutely no good." Embrace the learning that is happening within the things that are actually happening!