Bad Reaction From Family - Mothering Forums
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March 2009 > Bad Reaction From Family
peacelovingmama's Avatar peacelovingmama 01:01 AM 08-10-2008
We just got back from visiting my parents in Idaho. They knew I was pregnant but we hadn't really discussed it at length. Well, during the trip they made it clear that they think we are insane for having a fourth child.

My mother was especially critical and it was really painful for me. Of course, she also thinks I breastfeed to provoke people and that my kids lack discipline (we GD) so I know I should take her opinion with a grain of salt. But I can't help but feel hurt. Sorry to be a downer... I've just been really sad since we got back.

Munchkingirl's Avatar Munchkingirl 01:32 AM 08-10-2008
I am sorry they didn't see your joy at having a new and wonderful blessing in your family and were unable to share it it. I hope that there hearts will soften for their grandchildren and enjoy them. I was wondering if they knew about your lost one? Did they react that way then? Were they supportive in your loss? Maybe they are just scared that it will happen again and you will be in pain. I am sure everything will be fine, I am just trying to find a more sympathetic reason for such a poor reaction of a parent. I am worried that my in laws will react the same and am trying to prepare myself for how I can positively reply. They have indicated they we have plenty or too many now. We have 3. We will tell them when they get back in town the week of the 19th and I will be 12wks. Sending hugs and encouragement that no matter what others think your babe is an invited and welcome member of your family. Tara
herins's Avatar herins 02:52 AM 08-10-2008
Awww, I'm sorry. I can't imagine how painful that would be. I'm hoping that their reasons are similar to Tara's thoughts (that they are worried about how you will handle it in one way or another). Not that that excuses it. Now that you are home, surround yourself with the people who are as excited to meet your new one as you are!

Oh yeah, and good on ya for provoking people!
madrone's Avatar madrone 03:35 AM 08-10-2008
I'm sorry that they acted so badly.
bc1995's Avatar bc1995 11:10 AM 08-10-2008
I am so sorry. We went throught this with dh's family when we told them about #3. When dh told them about this little one, they apparently started in on all the reason why we shouldn't have another one. Dh told them that they had two choices, they could either accept and love this little one or we could go our seperate ways. So far, they are pretending like it doesn't exist. No questions about how I am or the baby. I am so glad we don't live near them. It is really heartbreaking. They already act like dd hardly exists so I can only imagine how this one is going to be treated by them. I hate that anyone is going through anything like this, too.
ilovebabies's Avatar ilovebabies 11:15 AM 08-10-2008
So sorry.

Yes, it seems we aren't allowed more than 2 children in America. Sometimes 3might be accepted if we were *trying* for a certain gender.

It'll blow over, I'm sure. I'm sorry she doesn't support your choices (like bfing). It's normal for us to want our parent's approval, well into our adult years! It's sad that she can't be more supportive of you.

Just keep your mind focused on the miracle growing inside of you! :
Finding Serenity's Avatar Finding Serenity 01:59 PM 08-10-2008
It is really heartbreaking when family isn't there to support you. When I told my Mom and Dad on my last pregnancy, #7, my parents were less then thrilled, my Mom actually angry at me. She warned me that if I had another one she was going to move away. The whole pregnancy I had to endure her "helpful" advice how I should have my tubes tied as soon as the baby was born. I don't think midwives do that during homebirth. LOL. Anyways, she did eventually take joy in the pregnancy. But it sure doesn't make it easy to tell them on this pregnancy seeing how they were last time. They will be told today via my 22 month old wearing a tee shirt that will proclaim "Future Big Sister". I wonder how long it will take them to notice. All that matters to me and my husband now, is seeing the blessing in all of this, and if others don't wish to share in it then that will be their loss.
UCmamaToMany's Avatar UCmamaToMany 03:46 PM 08-10-2008
I'm the oldest of 6. Which mean my parents had 6 kids together. It wasn't a blended family.

When I miscarried a baby between #2 and #3 my mom said "Well, good, now you can concentrate on other things." and my dad said "Well, that what they make condoms for."

I was devestated at my loss and they blew it off as a "good thing" for me. My one sister had had repeated miscarriages and was still trying for that first full term pregnancy. They never told her those things.

I felt like I was slapped in the face after my loss. It was horrible and it just made me realise they didn't matter. My family was MY family. Their family was THEIR family.

We did have baby #3 and the comments were not pretty. Then we had baby #4 and they got just as bad and just as rude. We didn't listen and we didn't care. We knew we wanted a large family and that is what we were creating and SUPPORTING! It just pissed me off that my parents who had 6 kids of their own were upset and MAD at me having just as large of a family! It seemed so hypocritical of them!

My dad frequently questioned my ability to look after and take care of "all those kids" and it got worse when we chose to homeschool instead of public school too. Suddenly I was truly insane for birthing at home, having a large family, and now home schooling.

At one point I just went off on my dad in an e-mail telling him how it was our family and not his. That he could accept it or just not visit anymore, as we didn't need the negativity. We struggled a little financially but not to the point of asking for money from them. We made it through and we're still making it through.

With our 5th we got dulled congratulations, but no more disappointing comments. That was later when I was well into the pregnancy that's when my dad would say really stupid and ignorant things like "Do you know what causes that?" and otehr idiotic things.

With our 6th we just didn't tell anyone again. We kept quite as long as possible to family. Or so we thought, LOL. Apparently friends of friends told my parents so they knew they just never said anything to us. My dad said that if we wanted them to know we would have told them. Which is true, but oh well.

Still my dad asked the stupid question which we had already given smart alleck answers to the pregnancy before. We just gave new smart alleck anwers to again. If they said "so are you done yet? We'd say - "We don't know we'll see."

It just floors me too. I have the most children and my large brood is so much more well behaved and more polite than my sister's kids. They each have 4 each and are more hyper and hard to control than mine. Even my objecting father has said he would much rather take my 6 out to eat in a restaurant than my sister's 2 at the time, because mine will sit and actually behave where as my sister's kids bounce off the walls! Ironically my sister's kids aren't allowed sugar, LOL, and my sister is a control freak. I'm a laid back mama, which is why I think my kids are more relaxed.

I have found in my family that once I hit baby #7 they throw the towel in and start pushing ans asking when the next baby is going to come, LOL.

So now we find ourselves on the opposite end of the spectrum. Before it was disgust and discouragement at the idea of notion of us having "another one". And now it's, anticipation and encouragement to having another one! Even my MIL asked us at 6mo PP if we were pregnant again yet! LOL Only because it seemed to be our M.O. to be pregnant again about 6 months after a new baby arrived.

Now we are on #8 and still the same dull congrats, but no more negative comments. It just sucks that we had to put up with all the BS from family the way we did.

People, even family, don't always realize how insensitive and hurtful they are being. I am sorry your family is just as rude as mine, if not worse. You aren't alone and just know that if you plan to have more, it doesn't involve your family and you have every right to keep the negative away from your family.

{{{HUGS}}}
Xiaguan's Avatar Xiaguan 04:06 PM 08-10-2008
I am very sorry they hurt your feelings! We have not told our family yet that #6 is on the way I am a wee bit afraid that they will react like your family did The only one I can count on is my father who will react like always with "Cool I get another grandbaby!" Gotta love him!

Melissa
lanielayne's Avatar lanielayne 04:15 PM 08-10-2008
I can sympathize with you. We have never had a congratulations from a family member and are on our 5th. We have been together almost 15 years but are not married so I suppose that has something to do with it for them. This time around I have only told 2 of my sisters and their reactions were "What are you going to do?" and "I can't believe I am going to tell people my sister has 5 kids". I come from a family of 4 and Matthew comes from a family of 6 but I guess things are somehow different for us too. It really makes me sad because I really want to make this a joyous gift but it is hard when I know people only want to put their judgements on us.
Paddington's Avatar Paddington 05:49 PM 08-10-2008
I'm sorry mama I am pretty sure both sides will be okay with 3, but though my mom will be okay with 4, I doubt very sincerely dh's parents will. It's so hard with the negative opinion on children and babies in today's society.
*~Danielle~*'s Avatar *~Danielle~* 05:49 PM 08-10-2008
I'm so sorry. Our society doesn't value children and it shows when people who are supposed to love and support you, show their true colors about it.

When my husband told his dad, his dad said, "You need to put a sleeve on that thing." My husband giggled at that. WTF?
peacelovingmama's Avatar peacelovingmama 07:43 PM 08-10-2008
Thank you so much for your support everyone. It means a lot to me. It is sad that others have encountered this same negativity toward having more children. It is especially hurtful coming from family. to everyone dealing with this and I'm so glad we can all be here to support one another.
SaraC's Avatar SaraC 08:00 PM 08-10-2008
I am sorry your parents are acting this way. I worry about telling my mother about #4. She thinks that 3 is totally enough and while this wasn't a planned pregnancy it is far from unwanted. My MIL will be very happy at a new baby so I am looking forward to telling her. I hope they come around or at least keep their mouths shut.
Janessa's Avatar Janessa 12:41 AM 08-11-2008
I'm sorry. I'm guessing my inlaws are going to be less then thrilled as well.
DanelleB's Avatar DanelleB 11:13 AM 08-11-2008
I'm so sorry you had such a bad reaction! I'm not expecting any better from my parents--especially my mom. I'm telling them by mail (eventually) and then letting hubby answer the phone for a month or 6 so I don't have to hear it.
G&B'sMama's Avatar G&B'sMama 12:45 PM 08-11-2008
I am so sorry peacelovingmama and all of you who have had to deal with such insensitive comments from your families

I'm very nervous about telling my family about this surprise in our lives. I don't have any real reason to think they will not be supportive, but I am nervous nonetheless.
Multimomma's Avatar Multimomma 02:32 PM 08-11-2008
We don't even TELL my parents anymore. Not until they guess because they are so ugly about OUR family...you think four is bad? Wait until they hear we're pregnant with #8.
jenr's Avatar jenr 06:02 PM 08-11-2008
My mother's reaction to #1 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? It's going to be short and ugly"

Reaction to #2 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? You can never love a second child like you love your first." Um, I'm the second child....

Reaction to #3 - I have no idea. She was visit my bro in UK at the time and he won't tell me what she said, just that he got into a huge fight with her about it because whatever she said, she said in front of his three girls.

I am hiding this pg from her because I do not want to deal with her negativity. It is tough because she moved in with us 2 years ago and I have popped out really early, but luckily she is a bi^%h and is just happy making comments about how fat and lazy I've gotten recently. We are moving in 6 weeks, so hopefully I can kept it secret for a bit longer. Unfortunately, it means we can't tell anyone else in the family or even our own kids.

My dad is just a schmuck but his reaction is always the same "Your crazy. Better you than me"

Sometimes families suck.
ilovebabies's Avatar ilovebabies 06:17 PM 08-11-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenr View Post
Reaction to #2 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? You can never love a second child like you love your first." Um, I'm the second child....

filiadeluna's Avatar filiadeluna 07:54 PM 08-11-2008
Wow, I'm pretty sure I would disown my family if they reacted that way. It is true that some people are better off with one child, or only two children, etc, and some families are well suited for lots of children. Some people truly shouldn't have any children (let's be honest).

However, your parents, the people who are supposed to love and support you, should be the LEAST judgemental about it. It would be a different story if you were living under their roof and expecting them to support and care for your family, but that's not the case obviously. Strangers are going to be judgemental enough... why do they have to add to it? :
Devaskyla's Avatar Devaskyla 08:00 PM 08-11-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanelleB View Post
I'm so sorry you had such a bad reaction! I'm not expecting any better from my parents--especially my mom. I'm telling them by mail (eventually) and then letting hubby answer the phone for a month or 6 so I don't have to hear it.
That's a great idea! I wish I could do that, but my mom insists on seeing us every month or so (ds1's b'day is coming up &/or we'll have to see her on Labour Day weekend) and on calling *every* single day. I wish I could get her to stop. Before dad got sick, it was once a week & that was more than enough. Since he died, it's every single day...for 10 years!

I was hoping I could at least keep her from knowing until October or something, but the way my belly popped the other night, I'm not sure I'm going to be able to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jenr View Post
My mother's reaction to #1 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? It's going to be short and ugly"

Reaction to #2 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? You can never love a second child like you love your first." Um, I'm the second child....

Reaction to #3 - I have no idea. She was visit my bro in UK at the time and he won't tell me what she said, just that he got into a huge fight with her about it because whatever she said, she said in front of his three girls.
OMG, & I thought my mom was horrible. I'm really dreading her reaction, but at least I'm pretty sure it won't be that bad.

So sorry you have to deal with that.
catballou24's Avatar catballou24 08:16 PM 08-11-2008
before our m/c in april i sent a card to my in-law's announcing it...they were surprisingly happy. this time around we are waiting for alot of reasons but i have a feeling my MIL will not react quite as positively as before...

fortunately my folks are always thrilled with new babies...

i'm so sorry for everyone who have had to deal with such negativity. it just isn't necessary, especially from family..
DanelleB's Avatar DanelleB 11:53 PM 08-11-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Devaskyla View Post
That's a great idea! ... I was hoping I could at least keep her from knowing until October or something, but the way my belly popped the other night, I'm not sure I'm going to be able to.
Luckily my parents live 5 hours away and we just had our summer visit. If I wanted to, I could put off telling her until we see her in November. But I see my grandparents a couple times a month, so they're bound to figure it out before then.
juliema's Avatar juliema 12:01 AM 08-12-2008
I'm so sorry they gave you that reaction. I still haven't told my parents yet because I'm afraid of what they'll say. My mom is pretty much a two child type of person so I know this third will catch her off guard. We'll be telling them tomorrow when we fly out to see them so we shall see. Every child is a blessing whether it's your first or your eighth.
emilys_mom1's Avatar emilys_mom1 12:15 AM 08-12-2008
I feel for you. I'm nervous about everyone reaction to us having a 4th baby too. To my suprise everyone has been supportive. I know there are extended family members that think I'm totally crazy.

Try to stay positive and remember we are here for you.
freestyler's Avatar freestyler 02:01 AM 08-12-2008
Well, I think it's GREAT and WONDERFUL that you're having a beautiful new, marvelous, miraculous baby!! Congratulations up down and sideways!! You are one Awesome Mamma! I'm sorry you and others in this wonderful group have had to put up with horrible crap from mean relatives and stupid people. Isn't it awful? I cannot believe how horrible people can act.

A while back I was venting on MDC because we were having our fourth, and family and other people kept making rude comments about what a Big Family I was going to have, blah blah blah. You know what jerks people can be!!! One MDC mamma said that she always WANTED to say (but never did), "Yup, I have seven kids, and now I'm gonna have EIGHT! If you don't like it, you can just BITE ME!" ROFLMAO! Even if you don't say it aloud, you can say it in your head, and you can at least give those people a look that says you're thinking that.

I also have really NO tolerance for rude, mean and unsupportive people, be they relatives or not. I have a tendency to not allow into my life those people who are toxic. If a person is consistently mean, toxic and unsupportive, I see no reason to continue a relationship with that person. If I treated someone badly, I would expect them to sever ties with me, after all. No toxic people. Toxic people suck. This means for me, I have no more relationship with my parents or brother, and good riddance!!! Maybe those of you suffering from toxic people can do some sorting, and figure out who stays and who goes. It really is unhealthy to deal with toxic people. it just tears you up inside unnecessarily and makes your stress hormones go way up.

By the way, we're expecting number five. I've only told my aunt and uncle, who are sworn to secrecy. I don't want to jinx my baby by having all my rotten relatives know about her/him! Yes, they are that bad.
peacelovingmama's Avatar peacelovingmama 05:31 PM 08-12-2008
I am still so appreciative for these responses and also astounded by how many of us have had to struggle with this issue.

Freestyler, I think I need to do some "sorting" myself. I do want to have a relationship with my parents but I am realizing that I really do need to set some boundaries.

In the past, I've done things like send research on bfing and gentle discipline in hopes that they would realize that I have reasons for my choices. But I don't want to spend the rest of my life defending my choices. Perhaps if we restrict our relationship to non-parenting topics, as another poster said she does, things would go more smoothly. Anyway, I have lots to think about... I am so glad I had this place to turn to because I've been extremely upset and desperately in need of support.
freestyler's Avatar freestyler 07:34 PM 08-12-2008
It is really, really hard, isn't it? I wish I had an easy answer for you. Just sending you hugs! And sympathy! As far as boundaries go, yeh, do set some firm ones. If they cannot respect that certain topics are NOT UP FOR NEGOTIATION, then they are probably not worth having a relationship with. I mean, a relationship is supposed to be enriching, life-enhancing, and loving, right? It's supposed to be live-giving, not life-sucking and soul-sucking and energy-sucking.

I'm still dreading that my mom could find out about my pregnancy. She's so toxic that I worry it could hurt the baby just to get thought vibes from her 50 miles away! I know it cannot hurt the baby, but still.....it's like ....do not throw your pearls to swine, you know? Remember not to share your own pearls (your knowledge, energy, children, etc) with people who act like swine.

You have 100% of my sympathy and support. Be strong and be brave. You are an awesome mom and you're doing the right thing by thinking about how to protect your boundaries and your family from hurtful people.
Paddington's Avatar Paddington 02:56 PM 08-13-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenr View Post
My mother's reaction to #1 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? It's going to be short and ugly"

Reaction to #2 - "Oh god, your not keeping it are you? You can never love a second child like you love your first." Um, I'm the second child....

Reaction to #3 - I have no idea. She was visit my bro in UK at the time and he won't tell me what she said, just that he got into a huge fight with her about it because whatever she said, she said in front of his three girls.

I am hiding this pg from her because I do not want to deal with her negativity. It is tough because she moved in with us 2 years ago and I have popped out really early, but luckily she is a bi^%h and is just happy making comments about how fat and lazy I've gotten recently. We are moving in 6 weeks, so hopefully I can kept it secret for a bit longer. Unfortunately, it means we can't tell anyone else in the family or even our own kids.

My dad is just a schmuck but his reaction is always the same "Your crazy. Better you than me"

Sometimes families suck.
Aren't moms great? : I'm a second and I was having a discussion with my mom about the bond that is formed during nursing that isn't the same with someone who doesn't, and she agreed with me. She nursed my younger brother but not my sister or I and she agreed that she always felt closer to him than she did us.

Well, mom, thanks for sharing. That's the kind of thing you just don't mention to your child. Ever.
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