To be fairly pissed off with my mother?(103 Posts)
Ok, maybe I am. Feel free to tell me I'm a bad tempered cow.
Ma and Pa, healthy, retired, comfortably off, seem to think that DH and I have lots of lovely time on our hands. And we could do all sorts of little jobs for them - far too frequently. Every couple of weeks Ma will ring and say, 'Oh - could you ask DH if he could pop down this weekend and do x,y,z for us?'
We have 5 DCs and both work full time. I'm a teacher - out the house from 7.45 am- 6.00pm and then marking/planning in evening. DH is up at 5.00am - 2 hour drive, 10 hours on building site, 2 hour drive home - gets in at 7.00pm, absolutely fucked. He has worked the last 3 Saturdays and is working tomorrow. So only has Sunday off. I meanwhile, have the joy of knowing that I haven't shoved a hoover round all week, bathrooms need cleaning, there is a week's worth of dirty washing (for 7) and that I need to do a bloody Tesco shop for practically everything.
Ma rang this evening to say could we pop round this weekend and put together 2 flat pack bookcases they bought today - oh, and could DH bring his drill and put up a curtain pole, and I could return a lamp they'd bought from Argos when I did my shopping, couldn't I?
Well yeah - I could. But I don't fucking want to. Ma will expect me to drive 6 miles in one direction to her house to collect the lamp. Tesco is on the edge of town 20 miles away in the opposite direction. Argos is right in the middle of town - so it means driving in, finding somewhere to park, walking there, queueing, etc, etc. A lot more fucking hassle. And I don't want to spend 3 hours putting book cases together. And I really don't want DH to spend his only day off doing jobs for my mother.
If the bugger's going to spend his day off doing jobs I've got a bloody long list - starting with things I've been waiting about 18 months for; like the leaking shower, the broken cupboard door, the wall in DDs room that needs re-plastering, the entire skirting board in the hallway that has been leaning against the wall for 4 years now waiting to be fixed onto it...
I know that DH will say, 'Aye, nae bother,' and go down and do it for them. And I will trail sulkily along as his helper. And if I moan he will say, 'Och well, it's no' a problem'. Well it is for me. I fucking, fucking resent the fact that my mother makes these frequent requests and expects it done that weekend - which means it is yet another weekend that we don't get the stuff done that we need to.
Being a gobby cow I have frequently told her I'm pissed off that she asks DH to do stuff - that she knows he is obliging and will say yes - and that she also knows what long hours he works, and that we have loads of stuff that needs doing. She just gives a merry laugh and says, 'Oh dear - men always do things for other people, don't they?' and then will be on the fucking phone about a fortnight later wanting something else.
(Dad, BTW, couldn't replace a lightbulb. Highly academic, completely impractical man)
Your childten need the same assertiveness training as you - fast!
The transparency of a family meeting should help, too.
Definitely family meeting. Tell your DC the reason why the shower needs fixing, skirting board sorting etc.
yup family meeting with children.
"your job is school and exams. you will not do jobs for grandma when.you are supposed to be revising. if sheasks you to visit, tell her you'll run it by me first. if you fail your exams because you've not revised because you've been doing jobs for her I will swing for both of you"
Family meeting time?
Maybe you need to discuss with your children that you are trying to enable your parents to be independent for as long as possible. So you are encouraging them to do tasks themselves and because your Ma is
scheming, entitled and clever worried about their abilities they are reaching out to include DD2 (for example). So any assistance asked for should be checked with you first.
This is not going to be easy for you. But it sounds like you have a really good bunch of kids there.
No no no. Get mouthy - say how you feel. Seems like they're childishly looking to find the boundaries. So you'll have to put yourself in the uncomfortable situation of drawing the line.
Say it like it is and then laugh.
You are correct! I am 6 miles down the road - rest of the siblings are scattered, but mostly a couple of hours drive away, at least. We're in North Lincs and nearest sibling (geographically) is Ginny who is in Sheffield. 2 are in N Yorkshire, 1 in Norfolk, 1 in London, 1 on South Coast and 1 is in South Africa.
Fife (home of DH) is looking good to me...(although his mother is a widow - and also a fucking nightmare. But he does have 4 other siblings in the same village - so we could share the DIY ).
Unfortunately I can't move DD2 half way through an A level course.
You have many siblings and you are the one at your Mother's beck and call. Presumably they moved to a safe distance.
You're going to have to move. A long way away.
Can you explain to your DD that if she does this again you will feel obliged to do everything asked of you to prevent her being dragged away from her revision?
Your DM has winning ways by the sounds of it - on the pc playing bridge? Wonder if it was with my DB?
She has no conscience whatsoever and has successfully manipulated DD and her BF .< actually I would use the word conned>
You won't win, you know. She is very good at it and you can't change the minds of DD and her BF. They are indeed very thoughtful and altruistic teenagers. I admire them, but not your conniving/lazy DM.
Your parents are 74 and 76 - so really no spring chickens.
Bet your mother is feeling so contented at her success in getting what she wants, and you are furious that DD and BF are now exhausted and have exams next week. YANBU, she is.
That is so underhand!
I guess she thinks you'll be at her beck and call now to stop her dragging your DD away from her revision.
I am sure the collective thoughts on MNers can work out a way to pre-empt this in future.
Can you find a local handyman who you can offer to call in on your DM's behalf next time she needs help, having made it clear that she will pay him herself of course?
Oh my God! Grandma is a sneaky one! Furious on your behalf OP!
Am exhausted just reading your post. Also slightly cringey from my whinging at DH I have too much to do (exam, job, 1 ds) Pails into comparison. Feeling very glass half full .
Good for you telling them to bugger off.
..And the score is
Grandma '1', OP '0'
FUCKING HELL!!!! I am so FURIOUS I could spit bricks!
Someone needs to bake me a cake with a file in it - because I'm going to swing for my mother!
DD2 and bf have just trailed wearily through the door. She was at his house this afternoon and they were (supposed) to be revising - DD has AS level exams beginning next week and bf has one final exam at Uni. But instead they have spent the fucking afternoon putting Grandma's bookcases together for her - because the crafty cow phoned DDs mobile and said, 'Would you come down here, darling? Your granddad and I are just needing a little hand with something...'
And DD2 (17), who is kind and obliging, got bf to drive them over there. Whereupon they promptly got handed the flat pack instructions and left to get on with it, whilst granddad pottered happily about in his greenhouse and grandma (apparently) was occupied in playing bridge on her computer. Took them about 4 hours. And bf put the curtain pole up, too. (He is good at DIY and took his own tools). Surprisingly, she didn't then suggest they take her lamp back to Argos for her - that was probably too much cheek, even for her.
I've just phoned Ma and had a furious go at her about how bloody selfish she is - her granddaughter has exams and they should have higher priority than granny's damn bookcase. Ma has simply airily told me, 'But they didn't mind at all, darling! They were happy to do it. I wouldn't have dreamt of asking if I'd thought it would be a problem...'
She is fucking unbelievable. (And I've also had a bit of a go at DD and told her 'your grandmother is totally selfish, and will have you running at her beck and call if you allow her to'. DD protested, 'Oh we didn't mind - grandma's old!)
Yeah...old and crafty. Clearly if I am not going to leap to do things for her she will rope in the next handy option. And she knows the DCs are cheerful and obliging and (also) too polite and well trained to say, 'Fuck off, Grandma'.
If you give your DH sex every time he says no to your parents he'll never do another odd for them again!
I am the family
slave helper. Untill after years and years of being treated like a work horse (literally doing all the heavy work) my knees gave out. I spend a lot of time in pain, sometimes unable to pick up my own ds....and crunching down painkillers like candy. Do they now help me? Do they offer to do heavy lifting for me? Do they even care? No.
Yay! Well done you! Now you've set a precedent, stick to your guns. They will eventually get the message & will stop using you & DH as their servants.
Well done OP! Enjoy your hard earned rest
Good work OP. .
BTW I love the way you write your DH's accent. . I can hear it in my head. (He sounds like one of Terry Prachetts Wee Free Men but presumably without the 'drink'in, theive'in and fight'in ' )
Woohoo, well done you. Enjoy the shag tonight
Tanith, that is quite possibly the world's most passive aggressive smiley.
I suppose you couldn't suggest sheltered accommodation if they're finding it difficult to cope?
I do truly think they forget how hard it is!
My own DM was judging away about these mothers who go out to work and leave their kids, then end up on ADs to cope (I wonder if you can guess her daily reading matter ).
She had genuinely forgotten that she sent us to our Gran while she worked in a high street shop.
Nor did she appreciate me reminding her of that famous 60's Rolling Stones hit 'Mother's Little Helper' ("Singing about Smarties, then, was he??!")
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