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Refusing to Compromise DS's Well Being for my Mother.

930 Views 16 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  Rhiannon Feimorgan
DS and I dropped money off to my Mom last Sunday. She came out of the house and looked at him through the window. He just stared at her. He does NOT know her at all. Here's why:

Both my Mother and Stepfather are HEAVY smokers. When you walk in the door there is a cloud of smoke that hits you. They are chain smokers and that's their right.

The smoking is an ongoing argument between my mother and I and *I* refuse to budge on my stance. I've asked her to babysit (with pay) a couple of times for me and DH but she has to come to my house.

The last time she said "never again, he has to come here".

In the same breath, she tells me that she is finding Crack Cocaine throughout her house because my Adult Stepbrother is dealing out of her home...she suspsects...Stepfather turns a blind eye to it. He is also using them, she told me she has told him he has to smoke his marijuana outside to smoke.

I grew up in this and she expects ME to have DS around that mess too?

And she brags on my younger Stepbrother's daugther Marci, who is 4 and is the light of her life. Marci LOVES her and she is much closer to Marci than she is her own Grandson (her only Biological grandchild). It hurts very much but my Younger Stepbrother couldn't care less that Marci is surrounded by drugs. Heck, he is an alcoholic.

I am just very hurt that my mom sees nothing wrong with these things and is willing to forgo a relationship (visit him at my house) with her only Bio-grandchild.

I am always telling her that DH and I *need* a date. It's been almost 7months as we have been Parent-orientated for awhile and I feel it's taking a toll on our marriage.

My In-Laws are out and so far, we have only used my mom, she has come to my house to babysit DS and it was great! But, she feels "used".

Oh, but she doesn't say that when she askes to borrow money from me.
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Good for you! Your ds doesn't need to be exposed to that sort of life. Are there any other parents areound that you would feel comfortable doing a child care swap with so that you and dh can get a night out? I find that worked well for us.
I'd suggest looking for a babysitter in the Finding Your Tribe forum for your area.
I agree. I grew up in an atomosphere like that, and it's NOT what I would want for my DD either. I'm fortunate that my mom has cleaned up her act, but if she hadn't I'd be the first one to say "No." In fact, I refuse to allow my own father (divorced from my mom) to be alone with DD, exactly because he drinks too much and smokes a LOT and is not responsible or stable.

So I say good for you.
It sounds like she's been living this way so long that it seems normal to her. You should be very proud of yourself for creating a different life for your family. I'm sure it makes you very sad, despite the fact that you know you are doing the rignt thing.

Even if she does come to your house to watch your son, I don't think she's the best person to watch him. Maybe you could trade sits with another parent!
Thank you so much for sticking up for your child. Good for you!
Your mom is nuts, stop lending her $$. Doesn't her drug dealing step son have enough extra cash to give her some?

Originally Posted by artgoddess
stop lending her $$.
That's a good point.
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I think you are absolutely doing the right thing. Not only are there the obvious toxicities of being around that type of environment, but ultimately, your child is your responsibility. Let's say your step bro get's busted during a home raid while your child is there. Your child would be removed (at least in my city that's how it is), and even though you would get your baby back, you would have to live with the knowledge that you knowingly allowed him to be there. Plus, your mom should understand that she is living in a dangerous situation herself, let alone pressuring you to expose your precious little one to it. Good job in putting your foot me, I know all about problems with the grandparents. Their "job" is only to love their grandbabies, and in doing so they would naturally only want what's best. Exposing an impressionable child to drugs and cigarettes is not a loving action!! Furthermore, being a mom herself, she should be considerate of the need for you and your DH to get out on your own once and a while. I know just how you feel. My mom has a terminal illness which renders her unable to care for my chickies, and I no longer allow my hubby's fam to do it either. I haven't had a baby sitter in over a year. But I would rather stay at home with my kids every Fri/Sat nite for the next 16 years, than put them in the hands of someone I can't trust.
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I think you are doing the right thing in not having your child in that home. I severely limit my children's time with their grandmother because of smoking as well.

However, there are LOTS of other options for finding a good, reliable, competent babysitter. If you need some time with your spouse, you need to start working on this. Yes, it takes more work and screening than just calling grandma, but it can be done and you should do it!
I agree that you're doing the right thing, and I know how hard that is because I've got a similar situation in my life
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I just want to encourage you. You are doing the right thing. Do not let pressure of a relationship cause you to put your son in harms way.
Kudos to you for standing your ground. That is no environment for a child. You're making the right choice, mama!
If I were you I would keep your DS fat away from that situation. YIKES!
nothing wrong there!
Wow, you are definitely doing the right thing.
I know it can be really hard to accept that parents just aren't going to be the kinda grandparents you imagined. With us its more my dh that has had to deal with this fact as my parents try to be there when they can, although we haven't had a "date" in over 2yrs. Sometimes, as hard as it can be, you just need to let go of your expectations. Things may never be the way you hoped. Sounds like you are an awesome mom and have an awesome kid, they are the ones missing out. They are making they're own decisions and that can be a hard pill to swallow when they choose to stay out of your lives. But, you can not comprimise your sons well being, sounds like you can't be 100% sure what he might be exposed to and you can't take that kind of risk. I have found that I can't change people, only the way I handle people. Its easier to be non-confrontational, go about your own life, and hopefully be an example of a great life. Hopefully one day they will realize their mistakes, but chances are pretty good that if you try explaining yourself right now, your just going to end up in arguements with more hurt feelings, when people choose to be stupid, no amount of talking is going to do any good.
I know this sounds pretty harsh, your topic just kinda hit a nerve I think and I wished I had learned some ways of handling situations sooner.
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This just PROVES my point even more.
See the article below...I just saw this in our local paper.

Family relieved other kids didn't eat crack

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 04/06/06
VIDALIA - The three children spotted the crack cocaine on Saturday in a plastic M & M's container on a dresser in their mother's apartment.

Thinking it was candy, the children put the small rocks in their mouths, then ran to the toilet to spit them out. But the youngest girl, 2-year-old Diamond Johnson, returned and put some more in her mouth and swallowed.

Diamond Johnson's grandmothers and father, Annie Burton (from left), Harry Dixon and Esther Dixon Jinks, display a T-shirt bearing a photo in tribute of the 2-year-old Wednesday in Vidalia.

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She fell ill, getting sleepy, and when she lay down, she shook, said the girl's paternal grandmother, Esther Dixon Jinks, who said she learned the details from Diamond's siblings.

Diamond died from drug poisoning. Her mother, Latoya Dixon, 25, is in jail charged with felony murder, drug possession and child cruelty.

For the family of the curly haired girl, who loved to dress up for church and play school, Diamond's death has meant heartbreak, remorse and some self-recrimination that they didn't do more to remove the children from their mother.

Jinks is relieved only that drugs did not take more lives. "It could have been all three" children, she said.

Police have not accused Latoya Dixon of using drugs. They say she was home when the accident occurred. But they won't elaborate on how the drugs came to be found in the apartment. Some family members say they suspect the drugs belonged to a visitor. Police have said more arrests might follow.

Harry Dixon, the 31-year-old father, said he was devastated to learn his daughter died after eating crack. "It's a hard feeling," he said.

He believed his former spouse associated with people who did drugs, and he suspected she used them herself. He said he wanted to obtain custody of the children.

"I want my kids," Dixon, a store worker who lives in Covington, said of Diamond's siblings, 7-year-old Zoey and 5-year-old Harry Jr. The children have been placed by the state in the custody of their maternal grandmother, Annie Burton. She said she wants to hold on to them, at least for the time being.

"I'd rather have them in my custody until further notice from DFCS," she said, referring to the state Division of Family and Children Services, which handles children who've been removed or separated from their parents. The agency said the family had no history with DFCS.

For now, family members are putting aside a potential custody battle, focusing on comforting each other, and preparing for Saturday's funeral.

Latoya Dixon and her three children lived in the Doe Run Apartments in what one resident called the good side of Vidalia, a city with a small-town feel, though known widely for the famous sweet onions. They said the woman, whose nickname is "Tweety," was private but friendly.

Diamond had many playmates among the cluster of yellow, two-story buildings. Children play on a big blue plastic hippopotamus and green alligator.

Burton was among the family members who rushed to the Vidalia hospital to which Diamond was taken.

"I went up to my grandbaby laying on the table, where they were working on her," she said. But she rushed out of the room. "I was hysterical."

Burton also rode in the helicopter that flew Diamond to the Augusta medical center, getting on board just as the police were leading her daughter away.

Jinks, the paternal grandmother, said she regrets not doing more to remove the children. She said she warned her daughter-in-law about the dangers of having the children around strange men, some of whom she suspected used drugs. But when she pressed, she said her daughter-in-law would not allowing her to visit the children for weeks.

"If there was any way. If I could have searched out to find proof" of the drugs, she said. "You can't do anything without proof."

Felicia Jones, a cousin who lives in the same apartment complex as Dixon, said Dixon loved her children. The mother enjoyed dressing up Diamond for church. She also liked to load up her kids in her big old car and drive them around.

"It's a shock. I'm still trying to deal with it," Jones said.

On Wednesday, family members crowded into Jinks' Vidalia home. Women sat and talked of their love for the little girl. Men stood in a quiet group outside the front door. Children roamed around, not knowing quite how to act.

Jinks recalled giving Diamond a "learning table" to help her with the alphabet. Diamond recited her ABCs within a few weeks of receiving it.

Wednesday evening, Burton came to Jinks' house to visit, and to show a T-shirt the family had printed in honor of Diamond. It showed the girl with a big head of curly hair and a calm smile. Several family members say they'll wear the shirt at the funeral.

The two grandmothers talked of the difficulty in telling the remaining two siblings that their sister had died. They tried to tell the children that their sister had entered a long, deep sleep.

When Harry Jr. heard the news, he asked how long she would sleep. He has been sad since then.

Zoey said little when told about the deep sleep.

"I know," she said.

Since then, Zoey has been acted as though nothing happened. "That worries me," Jinks said.

Then the two grandmothers inquired about each another.

"Have you slept?" Jinks asked Burton.

"No," she replied.
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I couldn't read the whole thing....That pour little girl. My heart goes out to that family. :'(
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