Grandma crosses the line with Mom (ME)

geoedwardsDecember 31, 2008

My mom, from the moment she found out that I was pregnant with my daughter, has put her two cents in regardless of my feelings. I had a bad breakup with my ex and my mom was there to help me. I moved home with her and my baby girl. I worked at night so she would care for my daughter until I got out of work. My daughter is 5 now and I am happily married and my son is 20 months old. My ex spends only a couple of hours once a week with her and on certain occasions, stays the night with him. My mom goes nuts when I tell her!! She starts yelling at me and tells me that if anything happens to her grandbaby she would never forgive me. I don't like the idea of my girl going with her dad, but it's not my choice. I love my baby and if she wants to go with her dad, I wont stop her. He is for the most part careful with her. He would never let her be harmed. I wish my mom would back off and let me raise my children the way I see fit. Can some one give me ideas on how to handle my mom?

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you are her mother,if she is fine seing her dad then let it be.he cant be too bad or else you wouldnt let her go,kids needs both parents,(if they good ones)why thow are you not happy about your child seing him,and you say its not your choice,somthing must be happening there,what is the real story,

    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 5:41PM
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Tracystoke, thank you for responding. My ex put me through a lot! I really despise him. I am polite to him in front of my daughter because she doesn't need to be caught up in the middle. I said it's not my choice because my daughter needs to be the one to decide if she wants to go with her dad or not. So depite my feelings for him, I have to be the bigger person. I have to defend him to my mother. She thinks he is a horrible human being. I have tried to explain that the relationship my ex and I had is very different than his and my daughters. Growing up, my mother did not let me see my father as a child. She was a horrible mother when I was a child and now, I think she is trying to make up for it through my children. She doesn't like when my daughter goes on field trips and we have a fight every time I tell her anything that she thinks is harmful for my kids, like the field trip. If my kids could live in a bubble that she could constantly have in front of her, she would be happy. Do you have any advise?

    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 6:01PM
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Every relationship is different but going through a divorce is tough in so many ways. My ex and I did not agree on much but one thing we agreed on was that we would not allow each other to be bashed in front of the kids. We both made it clear to our respected families that if they could not say anything respectful they had best not say anything at all. No matter what, your children are just as much a part of you as they are your ex. An insult to the spouse is in a way an insult to your child. We could not make our relationship work (he wanted something more than his family) it ripped our world apart. But we were still able to put what was best for our kids over our own personal feelings and for that I can say I regained some respect for my ex. You sound like you are making the decisions that are best for you.

Guess what, your mom had the opportunity to parent the way she wanted to, and now it is your turn. Maybe she needs to be reminded of that. You sound like a wonderful mom, stick to your guns and eventually she will get the message.

Best wishes

    Bookmark   January 1, 2009 at 1:28AM
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Not trying to be flip, but just stop telling her stuff! Don't volunteer any information. If she asks questions, answer briefly and change the subject immediately. When she presses or starts berating you about it, very firmly tell her that the topic is closed. If you don't draw a line in the sand, this will go on forever. And I wouldn't worry about your mom getting so mad that she stops speaking to you - she will still want to see her granddaughter, so she will have no choice but to keep her opinions to herself. You really do hold the cards here.

Kudos to you for fostering your daughter's relationship with her dad, and taking the high road despite your feelings about him.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2009 at 9:59AM
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I agree with weed30 your mother only knows what you tell her, so stop telling her. You need to decide who's in charge of your life. If you have to say anything, give the barest of details - "she's with her Dad" should be more than enough, or even too much.

You may need to have a "sit down at a restaurant" discussion - explaining that this is the custody agreement, and you feel that it is very important for your daughter to spend this time with her father, and that while you appreciate her concern, this is the way it is going to be, and she has to learn to accept it. As soon as she starts yelling or berating you, you should say that you understand her point, but that you expect her to treat you with respect, give her a hug and leave. If it's on the phone, firmly tell her you can't talk to her when she's this upset and say goodbye.

Every grandmother worries about their grandchildren, and she had a very close relationship with your daughter for quite a while, so she may feel "more entitled" to interfere. You should (frequently) acknowledge how important your mother is and how you appreciate, more than she will ever know, the care and support she gave you and your daughter. But you do need to set clear boundaries, and when she tries to cross them, you'll have to lovingly remind her that these are your decisions, and she has to respect that. She may escalate the bad behavior, but once she understands that you are serious and that you still love her, she can change her behavior, if she wants to.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2009 at 11:39AM
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I agree, stop telling her. And it isn't really your daughter's choice, in most situations the court will compel visitation even if you and your daughter don't want it.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2009 at 2:31PM
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My mother once told my brother about her disagreement with the way he was "handling" his son. His response to her was "You raised your kids the way you wanted to. I'll raise mine the way I want to." I remember my mom telling me this and, when she thought about it, realized how right he was. She never said anything to him about how he raises his kids again!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2009 at 8:09AM
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I have had the same issue with my mom... sadly the only way I got her to back off is tell her that they are my kids and I am raising them. I do the best I can and how I see fit. If she don't like oh well and unless I ask for her opinon to not give it and if she does I will not talk to her. It actually got to the not talking point I cut her completely off for a month. Now she doesn't offer her two cents about everything. My mom got pretty bad. She would get mad if I fed my kids cereal for breakfast mind you growing up she never cooked breakfast and that is all we ate. Thats just one example of over crossing the line.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2009 at 1:33AM
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