PIL going OTT on decorating own room for GC'S(148 Posts)
I have two DC (6 and 1) we live in same town as MIL and they see GC'S once a week either we go to them, they come to us, we all go out.. DS has a sleepover every couple of months and DD not yet though keep asking.
They are their first GC'S, have always been full on with them and would spend every day with them if they could, they buy them a new present every week ( which DP has said to stop but have ignored "it's only something small!") I get on ok with them, have never had crossed words but things have cooled since DC as I just find them so overbearing.
So to my subject..
PIL have just downsized and have just newly decorated one of the rooms for the GC'S to include, new kids bed, kids curtains, lampshade, height chart, framed children's art, train set, baby toys displayed in keeping with theme (they each have a stack of everyday toys in another room that they normally play with)have bought identical comforters and nightlights that they have at home and new set of chest of drawers which when my son opened the other week was filled with brand new clothes for each GC'S tops, trousers, sock, pants etc.
I know they are probably only trying to make them feel comfortablebthere but Is it just me to finds this a bit OTT and to be honest a bit weird like they are trying to re-live parenting? Especially as they only stay over very occasionally. I would never say anything as not my house but find it quite uncomfortable when I go there - even pictures on the walls/mantelpiece are just of GC'S - all other family members have been bumped off to a room that's hardly used!
I'd get annoyed at the clothes thing - more than anything else, at the waste of money from it. Both grandparents buy clothes for ours - fine, they enjoy doing it, and generally (my mother has occasional lapses into pink and frilly overdrive) they both have decent taste - but neither of them would keep the clothes at their house because they know that the rate the beanpole grows - the clothes would never get worn.
I won't lie though - while both have cots, highchairs etc at their houses - the way MY mum's done it Vs the way my MIL's done it has been contrasted... with my mum she's very much asked for ideas, and commented how it's really to reduce the amount of stuff we have to cart up and down the country... MIL just went ahead and did it anyway and keeps on going on about "oh when's she going to sleep in OUR cot" yadda yadda (last time we went there DD1 was in with us - technically in a moses basket as she was still tiny and the cot would have been huge for her and was in an utterly different room)... but then my MIL does various things to undermine me and hammer my confidence anyway and it's all part of that dynamic going on. I would say I'd be cheesed off if MIL did the whole decorating a room thing - but I know she'd do it for the blessed and glorious favoured grandchild and expect our girls to just put up with a boy-themed room anyway (and not only that but she'd snirk at how hilarious it all was).
The identical comforters thing is a bit odd to me - gawd she'll be screwed if they don't smell or feel exactly the same!
You think its ok that for no other reason, GP's should take the child and totally undress and re dress purely so they can it in a different outfit from the whole wardrobe they have amassed?
Id most def buy my own GC outfits but I wouldnt just dress them up at my house. I think thats rude to the DM who has got them dressed!
If I got an outfit i really wanted to see them in I would say " oh id love to see x in this - do you mind if we put her in it".
My pil have done similar for our children, including getting beds made to fit the space. It's lovely. And also, it means that the dc can have character duvets at grandmas not our house! They do give us our space though and I can imagine the room decorating thing would be annoying if it came from someone who was generally questioning your parenting or trying to be there every minute. There's no question of my pil reliving parenting-they are just revelling in being grandparents. Evidenced by the fact they don't feel they have to be up all night or change nappies ;-)
Don't want to go off topic on the thread but, as you can see from my own thread things are better, but not great yet. Thanks for the concern.
Oh, fandom, that's hard . Are things ok now?
3 out of my parents 5 bedrooms are taken over by my dc. There is a boys room, dd's room and now a playroom.
And don't underestimate having clothes at gp's house. I love it ex mil and my mum keep clothes, nappies and jammies at their houses. I don't have the hassle of packing stuff. I just chuck the children in the car and drop them off in what they are wearing and wave goodbye. It's aggro free and less washing for me.
To clarify- It's not an accusation that your Mil is a molester. I'm pointing out that people who have skewed senses of personal boundaries in one area are often manipulative individuals who may have skewed boundaries in other areas. OP has asked her to stop doing things and she hasn't- that means that the OP should be wary that the MIL will not respect her or her boundaries around her children and keep a close eye on her behaviour. Not relax and think how nice it is that her children have a grandma that loves them.
A few years ago I made a post very similar to this op- I was told like the op that I should relax and that my mil just wanted to enjoy being a grandmother. To an extent I did so and she went on to abuse my children.
Though a nice gesture on the face of it, I wouldn't like it if my mother (forget MIL) did above, as it comes with loaded expectations! I would much rather she contributed towards the nursery in our home where the baby would be staying majority of the time.
I think you're making a big leap here fandom, you can't just throw accusations like that around.
This is going to be a bit shocking op, but I couldn't not post Here is my thread in relationships- in summary my mil is a child molester.
What you are describing, having a room set-up with clothes for the children and a disturbingly over bearing attitude that made me feel uncomfortable is exactly how my mil began. Down to presents that were too small to stop, but that she was going totally overboard about. Please trust your instincts. Establish firm boundaries now and watch her like a hawk.
You are so lucky and once a week is not a lot to see them loosen up a bit and let them have them a bit more .
I think that's absolutely lovely. There's nothing threatening about it, they're not in competition with you for "ownership" of your children. Don't push them away.
It's nice that the GP have set up a room, but I think it's OTT the extent they've gone to. I'd feel very emotionally pressured, actually (and I don't take kindly to that!). They're in for a rude surprise when your DC start doing more and more activities, and start wanting to spend weekends with friends rather than GPs.
"The last sleepover I packed DS's clothes and when I went to pick him up he was in a full set of clothes (including pants) that I had never seen before."
Only skim read - but its the clothing that also makes me feel its been taken a step too far.
My own MIL would do this - and it felt like she was treating my DD like a doll, she had OCD issues or something as well and would wash her every single time as soon as she got there.
It was also a mark of ownership and I know she felt very stronlgy about her taste and still tries to dress my DH now!
In some ways I think the room IS nice and the toys.
My PILS have a nice house and yet take my DD to a small horrid room that used to be DH where they have or two really old toys from somewhere and it looks a bit like a students room in there with lots of throws over a crappy fold away sofa bed...just in case!
I felt sorry for my DD that her friends GP seem to have at least some toys for them....and took them out somewhere nice....
BUT the clothes is too far.
I agree with others, there are going to be raging boundary problems.
Having said that, I can imagine if I had the money and the time, also going into major over drive with teh arrival of GC.
I would only do it though if it in no way was over stepping what my dd's wanted.
But I am lucky as I have two DD's....so unless they turn out to be lesbians, I wont have to be a mil to a DIL!!!
My ds only stays at my dps with me ( Co sleeping and bf) but dn stays a lot - and there is a dgc room and tons of toys. It's lovely and easier as everything is there when we stay.
It isn't sinister just nice.
As for the the weekly present - get a toy storage for their room at pils and all the toys they buy can stay at dgps - they'll soon stop when they see it piling up.
Regardless of what they do it is down to you and your DH how often they stay so don't worry about it.
My dsis is rather talented when it comes to drawing and painting, she created a pretty amazing mural in her spare bedroom for her granddaughters, they love it.
Rather that than totally disinterested GP which we have, not even a bar of chocolate from DH Father for DS this Christmas. My Mum actually gave DS a fiver which was a miracle.
Personally I think it is normal behaviour for doting grandparents. When growing up I always had a decorated room with more toys than I could possible want at my grandparents I adored them and not because of the presents I never expected them. Even now I'm 32 and my grandad at 85 is making me a dolls house from scratch and puts the heating on when he knows I'm coming as I hate the cold. He worships my children and has made and given them more presents than I ever do but it makes everyone happy. We visit every week usually And i think its a lovely relationship and very important.
If you are worried that they are trying force you let you children say more then just say no when they ask.
Why do some people resurrect them? I can understand if it's your thread and you're updating but some people just have too much time on their hands.
I always get drawn into these old threads without noticing the date!
Generally I am the one sticking up for grandparents, especially MIL, but I wouldn't like it. It appears that they haven't got a life and that they don't have much of a relationship with OP- it is just the children. Do they ever do anything with OP without the children or her DH?
It seems too much emphasis on material things- especially when a lot will be wasted e.g the clothes never worn. I can see the point of getting some toys from a car boot sale to keep in the house and even a set of old clothes and wellies to go out in the mud. It might be nice to bear them in mind when decorating the room, but it also needs to suit adults who might stay.
However, I would just smile, nod and ignore.
3 month old thread.
But i think it's a bit OTT too.
Having been on the receiving end of this too I really think it depends on why it was done.
If they are generally over-bearing and have the attitude of always knowing best, then - yes - I would be annoyed as it would be them trying to "re-live" their parenting days and take over.
if they are not like that and don't try to impose their views etc on to you, then just take it as the excitement and love they have for your children and how well looked after they will be there as they have made the effort to furnish the room in the things your children find familiar.
I had a bit of both with my parents. It REALLY irritated me that they had their own cot, nappies, clothes etc but as time went on it was SO much easier as I didn't have to pack half the house to go there! My Mum can be over-bearing etc but after a few gentle reminders that I am the mum she was much better. We still have issues at times but I am so grateful that she loves them that much.
I agree that clothes belong to the wearer though, when separating my ex and I were both firm on this, and that all the kids' toys should be theirs to move between the houses. If the GPs want to keep a toy at their house you explain to the kids it's not their toy but their grandparents.
As the kids get older they will get upset if unable to take "their" clothes away so apart from nightclothes and dressing up clothes I would TELL the grandparents that if they give your kids clothes then they give them to them properly otherwise you don't want them wearing the clothes.
Their house, they can decorate it how they wish and fill their house full of baby stuff even if they have no grandchildren if that's how they want to spend their money.
You and your husband on the other hand decide when you wish them to have the kids staying over and that is unrelated to how much baby crap they have in their house. I have always worked so even if my relatives had lived nearer (no-one is within a 2h drive) they wouldn't have been getting the kids overnight alot and hardly ever at weekends as we wanted to spend time with them.
If they moan they have spent alot of money just tell them that was their choice and for the kids to stay they only need to provide the basics so they are comfortable eg bed, high chair as you can bring the rest.
Sadly as the kids grow I suspect this wil reduce as GPs rarely provide teenagers with loads of free ipods etc, people just get obsessed with little kids and babies.
Are they called Anne and John?
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.