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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
nak<br><br>
help! mil is visiting for a week for Christmas. I have a 6 mth old co-sleeper and a very attached 3 yr old. I spend most of my time playing and cuddling and caring for the kids, don't do chores after 8:30 pm, and dh is ok w/ chores but hopeless w/ the kids and considers fantasy football etc a priority, so the house is rarely clean. mil had two kids close together but (as far as she remembers) had a clean house, good meals, etc, and did it all herself. She tells dh we need to get a playpen so we (I) can do a better job w/ housework, like proper pot scrubbing. She finds my ap approach humerous and will probably have a lot to say when she finds out dd sleeps w/ me. I need support to survive, espec when dh starts agreeing w/ her.
 

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Oh sweetie I feel your pain! I don't have much to offer in the way of support. I tend to have the same problem...except that dh agrees with me. Try and ignore your MIL and go about your usual businness with confidence knowing that you are raising your kids the way you see fit. For her to comment on your housework, no matter what your parenting style is, is just plain RUDE! I would be pissed and I'd expect my husband to have something to say to his mother about that kind of talk. Rude rude rude. Maybe just say "I try my best..." and smile. Try not to let her see you sweat...ykwim?<br><br>
otherwise <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">s
 

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if she makes any comments tell her you received some GOOD advice that when you look back on the baby years you don't want to wish you'd played with the babes more instead of worrying about cleaning the house. in 10 years you won't think about the chores. you'll think about how your sweet babes are all grown up<br><br>
i work full time and have a 6 1/2 month old. this was wise advice given to me by my boss about her neices and nephews when i was lamenting the state of my dog-hairy house. she said 'we were way too uptight then about how clean the house was and those little babies grew up SO fast'<br><br>
enjoy it while you can <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Jstar -- that's exactly what I'm afraid I'll say, but in a really defensive way. I was trying to tell dh that I was afraid I'd suggest I was a better mom, and he got in my face and said I wasn't in the same universe as his mom. He ended up letting his pot boil over, literally, and then blamed me for distracting him. When he tried to shut the den door on the kids and me, I stupidly blocked him from closing the door and he hit my arm, hard. Lots of arguing and crying in front of the kids made a great ending to an awful day today -- that started w/ him asking what I do other than providing "day care".
 

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hey momma,<br>
I am fortunate in that my mil and I get along great but I do feel your pain on the dh thing. my dh is extremely defensive about comments i make about his mother's parenting style. honestly if i were you i would take a day before she gets there and go through my entire house cleaning with babe in sling and enlisting my older dd to help pick up things and other small tasks (my dd is very good with this). however if that doesnt work for you, try to ignore her comments as much as possible. if you must say anything just tell her that your time is completely occupied by your kids most of the time and you try to do the best you can. after that i would change the subject. try not to complain to your dh about all her annoying comments because that will just cause stress between the 2 of you. i know my dh likes to pretend his mom is perfect even though she has faults like everyone else. I am sorry you had such a rough day and evening. i have learned when arguing with my dh that he needs time to back off and cool down (this annoys me horribly....i want to argue and talk things out until we reach a conclusion) which is why i would assume your dh tried to close the door on you and the kids. i do hope that when you say he hit your arm it was with the door on accident while trying to close it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2">
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Actually, he hit me intentionally with his hand. Left a red mark. I've decided to focus on the kids' Christmas and not worry about dh or mil.<br>
I wish I could clean w/ dd in the sling, but she's 21 lbs and squirmy now so I can't manage too much.
 

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I wouldn't clean the house for her. My MIL is a *complete* slob, so I don't have this particular issue, but on the things that we do, nothing I say or do is good enough anyway, so why burn energy on it. If she says anything about the condition of your house, you take that as an offer of help. Just direct her to the cleaning supplies & thank her in advance for all her help in a genuine voice. Say something about how nice it is to have a MIL who understands how important the bond is between a mother & child, and that must be why you DH turned out so good. Try & do it like a telemarketer, all before she can get a word in. How can she argue when theres a hefty compliment tacked on the end of it? (she wont know its bulllshit)<br><br>
I'm hoping I'll have DDs cold or mastitis by Christmas Eve, so we won't have to go to my MILs house.
 

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oh mama, I am so sorry. feel free to contact me if you just need to talk or anything. I forget sometimes that people do have babes older and more active than mine. I guess I am lucky mine is still little for now. My house isnt clean either. i do tend to go on a cleaning spree if any family is coming to visit just to avoid the kind of comments you are talking about. I hope everything goes ok for you. You are right the most important thing is your kid's happiness. I hope i didnt offend. I was just trying to help you find a way to avoid the situation in general. (I hate confrontation.)
 

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(baby sitting at keyb, banging keys)<br>
Oh sweetie,<br>
I am so sorry you're having a tough time! <hug> I know how you feel. Every time MIL comes to town i feel like i have to clean the house top to bottom, just to prove i am good enough for her little boy. Isn't it terrible how we feel that we have something to prove to everyone?? Cleaning, sleeping arrangements, nursing...Isnt it really OUR business how we keep house and where our babes sleep? I think its fabulous and admirable that youve put limits on when housework is done and spend most of the time nurturing and loving your little ones. They will grow up remembering this time you spent with them, and never once think of the sink full of dishes or that they wore a shirt twice in a row. they will remember love and security, not dust.<br>
As far as MIL goes, if she starts into you, just raise the hand and say, "This isn't something I am going to discuss. Thank you for respecting that." If DH gets into it, i suggest packing the kids up and going for a walk, going to a museum or even to the grocery store. You can send your 3-yr old on a scavenger hunt, looking for yellow veggies or things that start with 'P'. Just remove yourself from the situation. That always helps me with MIL. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br>
Here is a poem for all us mamas today -<br><br>
IF I HAD MY CHILD TO RAISE OVER AGAIN..<br>
If I had my child to raise over again,<br>
I'd build self-esteem first, and the house later.<br>
I'd finger-paint more, and point the finger less.<br>
I would do less correcting,and more connecting.<br>
I'd take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes.<br>
I would care to know less, and know to care more.<br>
I'd take more hikes and fly more kites.<br>
I'd stop playing serious, and seriously play.<br>
I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars.<br>
I'd do more hugging, and less tugging.<br>
I'd see the oak tree in the acorn more often.<br>
I would be firm less often, and affirm much more.<br>
I'd model less about the love of power,<br>
and more about the power of love.<br>
--Diane Loomans<br><br>
Hugs to you and all us mamas.<br>
Lisa
 

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First of all, your dh should not be hitting you, ever. You need to establish with him that no matter how much your words hurt him in an argument, that hitting is off limits. If he can't agree to that then you have a much bigger problem than the proximate cause of the argument. I think that in any argument, it's better not to criticize the beloved parents of your partner, but I also think that even if you said something really terrible that he has no excuse to hit you.<br><br>
In general I have a great relationship with my MIL but she also believes that the proper priority of a household is cleaning, not the baby, and that babies have to adapt themselves to families. This is patently ridiculous. Adults can adapt, babies can't. If you stick the baby in the playpen and clean the house, you run the risk of not providing sufficient stimulation for the baby when the baby is young and needs that stimulation. If you don't clean the house you run the risk of ... well, a dirty house! Big deal!<br><br>
(My MIL's older children both walked very late, which is apparently a developmental pattern in their family, but I am starting to think that the playpen was why the oldest girl, now in her 40s, had such a strange way of crawling and walked so very very late.)<br><br>
Our house is always a lot less clean even than we like it, and my MIL has never hesitated to say something about it. Usually we clean like demons before she comes. At this point I would not blame you if you found something else to do, though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks again for all your support. I'm so glad to have found this board, through reading the mag at the library. It's nice to have my beliefs validated for once. I feel ready to handle any negative comments.<br>
In my dh's defense (sort of) he spent today vacuuming, cleaning toilets and floors, playing with the kids, and finishing our shopping. The house isn't perfect but reasonably presentable.
 
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