Did becoming a parent change your relationship with your own Mom/Dad?

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Did becoming a parent change the relationship with your parents? How?

-- Bob (and_if_I_die@hotmail.com), June 19, 2000


Not so much yet... but I know it's going to happen, and in a good way. For one thing, I've learned in the past four weeks how to filter out advice and junk that spews from the mouths of all-knowing people. Finding this tolerance has made it a lot easier for me to deal with my mom... I haven't been aggravated by her in over a month! Even today after she hinted that I shouldn't take the baby out in public. I was able to say to her, "well, she's a traveling baby. That's just the kind of baby she is." Woo hoo!

I think as time goes by, I'll even become closer to my parents, understand them better, and even end up being a lot more like them.

Heck, we bought our daughter a Harley Davidson onesie today... what's next? heheh

-- Joanna (stasi@sweetpeas.org), June 21, 2000.

Same here... not so much yet, but I feel it looming on the horizon.

My parents have always been the type to not take things that are important to me seriously. Things like Spiritual beliefs and Emotional stuff. It's not like they sit there and mock me for it, but my mom especially will get this look on her face that just infuriates me. It's like this smirk that says: "I really can't believe you feel that way."

That's fine when it's just something in regards to my "silly" spiritual beliefs or something that I feel strongly about emotionally, but things have been happening lately that have really been setting my teeth on edge and I have really had to hold back from going off on my mother.

One is our everpresent picture-taking fight. My mother is the queen of picture taking and I had to grow up with that. I vowed that I wouldn't put Jessica through that.

Jake and I are having Jessica's pictures done every month, for her first year (with a different family member every month) and I do keep a camera in my diaper bag so that when we meet up with someone that I haven't had her picture taken with yet, I'll be prepared.

My mom on the other hand... I swear to buddha... for the first month and a half, whenever she saw Jessica, the first words out of her mouth were: "Oh my goodness! Look how adorable she is! Where's my camera?" I am NOT kidding. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

So, Mom and I have been having this fight, and every couple of weeks it comes to a head. On Sunday (Father's DAY of all things!) she says: "So what?! She's my granddaughter!" I immediately thought of the link that Rob provided a few weeks ago (the court decision about grandparents' rights, don't remember it right off the top of my head... I'll go looking for it in a minute.) and I told her: "I don't CARE! She's is MY DAUGHTER and you need to respect her parents wishes."

Of course, in true My Mother form, she got all huffy and moped around the house for like 20 minutes or a half an hour. Like a damned six year old or something.

Two other things have happened that have caused the hair on the back of my neck to raise...

The other day, I stop by there to pick up some laundry before I have to go pick up Jake from work. As I'm coming out of the garage with the laundry, my mom is taking Jessica out of her car seat. I tell her that we're not staying long, that I have to go get Jake in like FIVE minutes. "OH, just for a minute!" She says. One minute turned into ten and then when I said: "I really have to go, I have to pick Jake up." she tells Jessica: "No! Let's go! I'm going to run and hide with you."

I told her: "You're really not inspiring confidence in my coming over here."

The scary thing is, she didn't even say SHE WAS KIDDING. I know (really really hope) that she was, but she didn't say it, and it just caused me to be extremely uneasy.

Something similar to that happened on Father's Day. As we're packing up, getting ready to leave, my mom is holding her and says: "Yes, mama's got you."

My head whipped around and I said: "No! You are NOT her mother, you are her GRANDMOTHER." Again, she didn't say it was a slip or she was kidding or she MEANT to say grandmother or anything like that.

I gave Jake an earful on the way home. I sat there and ranted about my mom for the entire drive home.

Again, I feel it looming on the horizon. I'm either going to have to sit down and talk to her, or write her an email or SOMETHING, and tell her that this behaviour is not acceptable and she is making me increasingly uncomfortable about bringing Jessica around.

I just don't want to have that conversation because how do you say something like that tactfully.

"Sorry, we'd come around more, but we're afraid you're going to kidnap your granddaughter."

Yeah, I'd say that having a child has impacted my relationship with my parents. I'm not really looking forward to it. *Sigh*

-- Jolene (jolene@lanset.com), June 21, 2000.

My relationship with my parents got a lot closer after the birth of my son. I felt like I finally understood what they'd done for me.

I had spent years arguing and fighting with them and we simply don't do that any more. It's like we both grew up or something icky like that. :P

I think the most amazing thing is how good they are to my son, which is something Mike's mom is not great about. Russell is an afterthought to Mike's family because he's not blood. My parents know about this and take special pains to send Russell postcards, books, shirts and cards just to let him know he's special. My mom recently wrote him a letter telling him that he was their first grandchild and therefore, one of the most special.

Russell loved that. I loved them for telling him that, in the face of how jealous and left out he's felt with his sister and Mike's family's behavior.

The question I have is: How has having kids changed your relationship with your in-laws?

They're finally starting to accept Russell, after 3.5 years.


-- wendy (baewe@geocities.com), June 21, 2000.

gee, I asked the question and then never answered....

for me, it's been a mixed bag. for any of you that have read my journal, you know that I have a horrible if almost nonexistent relationship with my dad (don't get me started). becoming a father just reinforced my disbelief that he was able to just turn and leave the way that he did.

with my mom, it's helped in that watching her happily play with my kids is such a change of pace. my mom just normally isn't that cheerful of a person. but she feels needed again, and that makes life so much more meaningful.

inlaws? hmm. well, they are very loving to the magoos and overly generous of their time and money. but I can not say that it has affected my relationship with them. I just have different reasons to say "thank you". neither of them are the touchy-feely let's talk about emotions and life kinda folk that I get on best with...but I'm thankful that they are so kind to us.

-- Bob (and_if_I_die@hotmail.com), June 24, 2000.

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