Do family members/friends undermine your parenting?

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Do family members/friends undermine your parenting?

ViVix ViVix
I went to family dinner last night, and I swear I'm done with it. My mother and sister took everything I told my daughter NOT to do and let her do it. Then, I had to be the bad guy. It's not only exhausting but aggravating. Do you have family or friends that undermine your parenting?
Answers (public voting - your screen name will appear in the results):
Yes. I have family that does this.
leelee , Subska , jmex83 , - Kira - , JessCee , BobbiJay , melissa1973 , zwee75 , chantal coopette , Kitka , funluvinmama , deltalima
12
Yes. I have friends that do this.
leelee , jmex83 , married with children , deltalima
4
Yes. I have a babysitter that does this.
No one does this to me.
Gunsmoke , P'Gell , Beck , wrmbreze , PeaceToTheMiddleEast , Badass , dv8 , ToyTimeTim , Rossie
9
My spouse/partner/baby's daddy or mommy does this to me.
married with children , zwee75 , funluvinmama
3
Other. Explain.
js250 , P'Gell , herMaster , Jaimes , Nazaress , Badass , Secret Pleasure , True Pleasures , sktb0007
9
Total votes: 37 (29 voters)
Poll is closed
03/19/2012
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Gunsmoke Gunsmoke
We raised out kids on the west coast with our families in the mid-west - so meddling wasn't an issue. However we did visit a lot - and neither my in laws or parents ever interfered with our disciplining or parenting. Lucky I guess!
03/19/2012
js250 js250
My ex-husband tried that when we were married, so have other relatives of his. However I let them know that unless they wanted to have minimal contact, to let me raise my daughter. They had had their chance, and did not do too spectacular, either. My ex, well, he is an ex.
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by ViVix
I went to family dinner last night, and I swear I'm done with it. My mother and sister took everything I told my daughter NOT to do and let her do it. Then, I had to be the bad guy. It's not only exhausting but aggravating. Do you have family ...
No one does this to me because I don't let them.

Rule One of not allowing people to undermine your parenting; Never EVER accept "free" baby sitting, especially while you work, every day, or over week ends etc, from people you don't want involved in your parenting. When you leave your kids in the care of someone for FREE who has a stake in their care, you are basically saying, "I'm not an adult. I can either not pay for my own child care, or I think someone owes me FREE childcare, so I'm letting myself be beholden to others by using them for free child care."

I realized when I first had kids, my parents and my inlaws were going to try to get involved. Serious discussion followed. "I'm an adult. My husband is an adult. THESE are our kids. YOU have already raised your kids and had a chance to do what you think is right. THESE are OUR rules and they stay. IF you choose to break our parenting rules, contact will be severely limited." That meant if grandma decided to give S something I told her S should not have to eat, or let her do something we said she should not do, S (and the other kids) would not visit for several months. Not even once. We did this, we stuck to our guns, and eventually they realized we were NOT going to give in and let them take over.

It worked.

Nobody interferes with the way we parent our kids because we made it clear WE were the expert on our own children and we were adult enough not to "depend" on others to do ANY of our parenting responsibilities.

I think allowing others to "help out" is a bad bad idea. Play with your kids? Sure. Visit grandma and grandpa on occasion. Absolutely. But, participate in raising the kids, because I felt I deserved free child care? No. "Free" child care is never free.

Having kids is a rite of adulthood. Using parents, in-laws, sisters in law etc for "free" child care says, "I'm not an adult, I can't do this. Do it for me!" Then people feel the desire and even think you NEED them to get in your business with the way your kids are raised.

If ever there was a time to stand up and say, "I'm the expert on these little people, you can agree with my rules, or changes in contact will be made" having kids is the time to say it. That means while you are still in the hospital after the birth. It starts then. Then, it gets harder.
03/19/2012
herMaster herMaster
My son was born deaf and got cochlear implants and gets specch therapy in our home. The people that do the speech therapy have gotten a bit uppity about thinking they can cross boundries and tell us how to parent. It is very hard because he needs the speech therapy so I cant be too mean to them about it but I dread them coming every week as I know it will aggrivate me and my wife.
03/19/2012
leelee leelee
Quote:
Originally posted by ViVix
I went to family dinner last night, and I swear I'm done with it. My mother and sister took everything I told my daughter NOT to do and let her do it. Then, I had to be the bad guy. It's not only exhausting but aggravating. Do you have family ...
Yes, My brother in law is the worst because we said the was the god father and he took the father part to far and would yell at my kid after I told my son it was ok. And then my Mother in law does it all the time when I tell my kids no candy or snacks because we are about to go eat and then she will let them. It gets on my nerves but I'm working through it.
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by ViVix
I went to family dinner last night, and I swear I'm done with it. My mother and sister took everything I told my daughter NOT to do and let her do it. Then, I had to be the bad guy. It's not only exhausting but aggravating. Do you have family ...
I do have a question; How could they "let her do it" (the things you evidently made clear were off limits to your daughter) when you were right there?

You have to stand up for yourself as an ADULT and as a parent. I would let your family know that your rules stand. If they are attempted to interfered with, visits and contact will be canceled until further notice. Also, DO NOT accept any "free" child care. From what I've seen in a long career of raising 3 kids, NOTHING is more detrimental to parental authority than letting someone do regular day or night care, that you should be paying for OR doing yourself, and letting someone with an agenda do "for free."

It's natural for your mother to still see YOU as a child. It's your responsibility to let her know you are not a child anymore and that YOU can take care of your child without "help" or interference. Only YOU can do this and make it clear to your family. If you do nothing, they will only interfere more and more. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to get through to them.
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by leelee
Yes, My brother in law is the worst because we said the was the god father and he took the father part to far and would yell at my kid after I told my son it was ok. And then my Mother in law does it all the time when I tell my kids no candy or ...
Again, HOW can your mother give them things you said no to, if you are right there? No means no. People have tried that with my kids, I walk right over, take the junk food OUT of their hands, dispose of it and carry on with what I was doing. How is that difficult?

The only way to "work through it" is to let your family know, "Interfere with my parenting techniques, and contact will be limited or nonexistent." It's amazing how quickly family changed their ways when they are not allowed to see the kids AND you made it clear WHY this is happening.

Food always seems to be a big battle. I have seen it from the other side, too. My step sister has her daughter on what I feel is an unnecessarily restrictive diet. However, she isn't my kid! I make sure when she will be over at our home, we have lots of.... fruit (about the only thing this kid is allowed to eat) around, and I say NOTHING. It's her child and the child's diet is up to her. My "feelings" do not play into it at all. I play by HER rules, because she's the child's mother. It isn't that difficult to play by her rules. As much as I'd love to give the kid some Peeps and chocolate for Easter, or some cookies or cake at Christmas I won't. What good would that serve?
03/19/2012
Beck Beck
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
I do have a question; How could they "let her do it" (the things you evidently made clear were off limits to your daughter) when you were right there?

You have to stand up for yourself as an ADULT and as a parent. I would let your ...
This is what I was going to say.

I don't let this happen because I tell them straight up, this is how things are. If they don't listen, then they don't get my kids. Of course, I don't need regular babysitting, either.
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Beck
This is what I was going to say.

I don't let this happen because I tell them straight up, this is how things are. If they don't listen, then they don't get my kids. Of course, I don't need regular babysitting, either.
Exactly. And when I DO need regular babysitting, I pay for it. I figure if I "can't afford" a baby sitter, I "can't afford" to go out. If it's for work, and I "can't afford" to pay for child care, then I'm not being paid enough in my job to have a job, and would be better off not having it. If child care eats up ALL one's income, it doesn't pay to go to work.

In serious situations (divorce, widowhood, single parenthood) subsidized child care is there. But, for "fun" things, I think one needs to pay for the child care, or trade child care with a friend who respects your wishes. Occasional visits to grandma are one thing, regular "child care" for free is the root of SO much family strife. Grandma feels she is being taken advantage of (as much as they love our kids, they do have their own lives and have already raised their own children) thus she feels her "own rules" can be followed in HER house. It's a losing battle the whole "free child care" from family members thing.
03/19/2012
jmex83 jmex83
Quote:
Originally posted by ViVix
I went to family dinner last night, and I swear I'm done with it. My mother and sister took everything I told my daughter NOT to do and let her do it. Then, I had to be the bad guy. It's not only exhausting but aggravating. Do you have family ...
My mother seems to think that when the kids are at her house, its her rules. THing is, the kids need stability and consistency. No matter where they are. She constantly tries to do things she knows it against our rules. drives me freakin' crazy.
03/19/2012
- Kira - - Kira -
Well, my mom picks up my son many days of the week and keeps him for an hour or so while my husband and I are still at work. I could afford to pay someone for this, but I am an incredibly paranoid person (diagnosed and all). I do not trust anyone but my mother or step-dad around my son. I would not feel comfortable leaving my child with one individual that I did not know well. In a school or daycare, at least there are multiple people to watch what's going on. That doesn't make it 100% safe, but I think it does help.

My mom also takes my son once a month or so overnight. This is not because my husband and I have plans, but rather that she wants to see him. I love my mom very much and know she loves my son and he loves her. I would not deny visits between them, as it would hurt my son as much as my mom.

My mom won't give my son things that I don't approve. Or at least she doesn't when I'm around and my son hasn't ratted her out on other things. She does buy him waaaay too much stuff, which I tell her constantly. Since she keeps these things at her home, I can't really go throwing things away.

What REALLY pisses me off is what she does when my son isn't there. I'll be talking to her about work and she'll give me a guilt trip that because I work late some nights that I'm an awful parent. Sometimes it will randomly work its way into conversation. She also tells me she doesn't like some of the things I do in my parenting methods (I take toys often as punishment, since my son doesn't actually mind time outs...). I also have a short patience and get irritated quickly. She is forever telling me how awful I am for not being super patient. It's just not my nature, I guess. I've been trying to teach that to myself for years with no luck. However, when my son is around she doesn't say these things nor does she break the ground rules I have for my son. So I appreciate that.
03/19/2012
JessCee JessCee
My mom tried to do this, but it was more done by putting me (really, my parenting) down in front of my children... that didn't work out very well for her. I was still young (19 actually) I still had a little temper, and she got her feelings hurt. I realize I probably didn't handle the situation as well as I would have now, but I'm not really sorry for it either. She's now in the midwest, so that problem isn't an issue now. But yes, this has happened to me.
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by - Kira -
Well, my mom picks up my son many days of the week and keeps him for an hour or so while my husband and I are still at work. I could afford to pay someone for this, but I am an incredibly paranoid person (diagnosed and all). I do not trust anyone ...
If she's sticking to your rules when you aren't around, it's a different story. But, the guilt trips are unnecessary. Perhaps, if someone else DID watch him when you have to work late, you wouldn't have to put up with that.

I wouldn't put up with that from my MIL or my own mother. I stayed home much of my children's young years, but I did do [paid) day care and then had my own lactation business, where I could work my hours around my husband's schedule and also set my scale where I could pay a friend (or trade child care with her) if I needed to see a patient when my husband wasn't home.

I don't think it's fair for her to try to make you feel guilty if you have to work! Of course, as Eleanor Roosevelt said, "No one can make you feel inferior without your permission." The same goes for guilt! Let her know, you will leave the conversation (rather than sitting there seething) if she continues with the guilt shit.

Sadly, sometimes parents have to be treated like children, and if your mother is giving you a hard time, give HER a time out. A few weeks without her grandbaby fix, and my guess is she'll shut up about YOUR choices.

And, her giving you grief about a gentle parenting technique that uses natural consequences like taking away toys, that's ridiculous. I wouldn't put up with it. Don't just sit there, let her know you are an adult and that's that. If it continues, you often have to take action in order to change behaviors (and I mean your mother's behavior.)
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by JessCee
My mom tried to do this, but it was more done by putting me (really, my parenting) down in front of my children... that didn't work out very well for her. I was still young (19 actually) I still had a little temper, and she got her feelings hurt. ...
But, even if you were young, you stood up for yourself as an adult!

As for people getting "their feelings hurt": so what? Nothing is more important than parenting your kids the way you know is right, and her putting you down in front of your own kids is unacceptable. The thing is: is isn't about her feelings it's about YOU being the parent.

As long as children aren't being physically harmed, your mother had no business interrupting your parenting. You did what you needed to to put yourself back in the driver's seat. Kudos!
03/19/2012
- Kira - - Kira -
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
If she's sticking to your rules when you aren't around, it's a different story. But, the guilt trips are unnecessary. Perhaps, if someone else DID watch him when you have to work late, you wouldn't have to put up with that.

I ...
My therapist tells me all the time that I let her make me feel bad. LOL. I need to stop that.

I do stand up to her. I tell her it's my business how I choose to parent and unless I'm doing something abusive she can shut up about it. I also think taking toys is pretty gentle. My mom raised me with no punishment ever, which is of course why I turned out spoiled and bitchy! HA.
03/19/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by - Kira -
My therapist tells me all the time that I let her make me feel bad. LOL. I need to stop that.

I do stand up to her. I tell her it's my business how I choose to parent and unless I'm doing something abusive she can shut up about it. ...




It's hard to stand up for ourselves. I know.

Keep working on it, and you'll be a pro in time.

It sounds like your doing a good job. NO discipline leaves children floundering and not knowing how to act, it is (IMO) as damaging as too heavy physical discipline. I know parents who think "gentle" means "do nothing." But, it sounds like you have a handle on what works for your child. It sounds like you're doing a good job.

I remember weeks when we'd have a dozen toys in the attic. I'd give a requirement, (picking up the toys and putting them away usually) and if it wasn't followed with one or two reminders, into the attic the toy went.

Once I left a toy up there and didn't find it until we went to get the Christmas stuff, though. That kid was SO happy to have that toy. But, the toy removal usually worked pretty well. (Kids who respond well to toys being taken away respond well to allowance and cars being restricted when they are teens. Just a heads up.)

Time outs worked with our kids, most of the time. I do remember one afternoon where my eldest daughter (about 3 at the time) took 2 hours to complete a 3 minute time out! She kept getting up, and I wasn't going to give in. I finally held her into the little chair, until the timer went off. The next Time Out only took about 5 tries. But, every kid is different.
03/19/2012
JessCee JessCee
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
But, even if you were young, you stood up for yourself as an adult!

As for people getting "their feelings hurt": so what? Nothing is more important than parenting your kids the way you know is right, and her putting you down in ...
I think that's really why I don't regret it, I was proud to be confident in what I was doing, and I stood up for that!

You know, the whole thing was over me telling the twins "no, no, no" as they were trying to open up my kitchen cabinets (the only ones I had childproof at the time were the ones with chemicals in them.) Anyway, she interrupted me and told me "Don't yell at them, they're only babies" I wasn't yelling at them, and they were 2 years old. Little things like this had been said throughout the whole day.

This all stems from some kind of issue she's had with me since she divorced my father. She's always said, "you are just like him"... and she doesn't mean it in a good way, either! Shes always tried to belittle me growing up, but when she did it to try to gain my kids' favor, I snapped.
03/19/2012
Nazaress Nazaress
I voted "Other" because this doesn't happen to me but this happens to my sister. Our parents "undermine" her parenting (and her husband's) but really, they're the ones looking out for my nephew. His parents let him do whatever he wants, whenever he wants. He was in diapers for YEARS (At the age of 6, he just recently got out of them). He STILL uses binkies. He has lost and had several of his teeth removed because all he eats is bad food and they've rotted. He has a horrible temper and he ALWAYS gets at least one toy (if not more) at ANY store they go to. He's really bad now. They don't listen to my parents, anyway, but at least they try. Sometimes, it's necessary. It sounds like your situation is the opposite of this, though, as you're trying to raise your child right and not spoil them so I can understand how that would be frustrating.
03/19/2012
- Kira - - Kira -
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell




It's hard to stand up for ourselves. I know.

Keep working on it, and you'll be a pro in time.

It sounds like your doing a good job. NO discipline leaves children floundering and not knowing how to act, it is ...
Good to know about allowance. I've always planned on doing that to teach him to save and to spend wisely, but I did want to attach "work" to go along with it. Also good to know about the car. Hubby and I both used to race, so I'm sure my son will be a hellion behind the wheel. X.x

I've forgotten toys in the spare room. LOL. My son gets super happy when I remember I've put them there. I usually remember, but sometimes I get spacey.

The times I do try the time outs, that happens. Then, when I get up, he sits in time out on his own for 10-15 minutes and says "wanna be in time out!" UGH. Then usually comes right back out and repeats the behavior I was trying to stop. Oh, and time outs usually result in injury for me. My son will kick me repeatedly since I have to hold him down EVERY time. He's kicked me in the groin even. Not pleasant. He's pretty defiant in general actually. Wonder where he gets that from....
03/19/2012
PeaceToTheMiddleEast PeaceToTheMiddleEast
My family barely comes around. But when they do I make sure they know the rules and when I say something it goes.
03/19/2012
Badass Badass
I'm not a Mom...
03/19/2012
married with children married with children
yes, but I keep my foot down. after all they are my kids.
03/21/2012
Secret Pleasure Secret Pleasure
My sister raises her kids different then I raise my daughter so sometimes she does this, but I don't allow it if I dont agree with what shes doing or saying.
03/22/2012
True Pleasures True Pleasures
I don't have any kids, and don't really hang around anyone that has them. I'd try not to undermine them, unless something really needs to be said.
04/16/2012
Rossie Rossie
None of my family members have done that to me; but my mother-in-law spoils her daughter's kids rotten and turned them into brats.
04/16/2012
ToyTimeTim ToyTimeTim
Mom tried a few times but soon learned I would have none of that. She soon learned how big an asshole her son can be.
04/16/2012
ViVix ViVix
Quote:
Originally posted by herMaster
My son was born deaf and got cochlear implants and gets specch therapy in our home. The people that do the speech therapy have gotten a bit uppity about thinking they can cross boundries and tell us how to parent. It is very hard because he needs the ...
I'm sorry to hear that! I know what it is like to need someone to be involved with your child, yet to not necessarily be happy with their involvement.
04/17/2012
ViVix ViVix
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
I do have a question; How could they "let her do it" (the things you evidently made clear were off limits to your daughter) when you were right there?

You have to stand up for yourself as an ADULT and as a parent. I would let your ...
I am a single parent that receives no child support and works part-time plus goes to school full-time. Yes, I need help. I find your judgement harsh. I am still doing the best I can to provide, and I live on my own, pay my own bills, etc. I do teach my child to be respectful (at two years old, one of her most often used words is "please"), and I do discipline as well. However, if I say "no candy," and my mother hands my daughter candy in front of me, I feel horrible taking it away from a crying toddler who doesn't understand. I simply was looking for others to share a helpful/non-judgmental opinion, but to each her own.
04/17/2012
ViVix ViVix
Quote:
Originally posted by Nazaress
I voted "Other" because this doesn't happen to me but this happens to my sister. Our parents "undermine" her parenting (and her husband's) but really, they're the ones looking out for my nephew. His parents let him do ...
Thank you for the positive feedback.
04/17/2012
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