Why does my mother behave secretly to my children?

(27 Posts)
NoahVale Mon 07-Mar-16 07:43:58

She wants my dd to go on the NCS, national citizens thingy, dd told me, she says, Do it for me
they have been ringing us for weeks and dd isn't too sure, she hasn't decided. I say it has to be her decision.
but out of my earshot my dm says things like this. I walked in on them yesterday and she stopped. She obviously doesn't want me to hear her patter with my dd.
she sneaked upstairs fairly recently and put curtains up in the bedroom, we hadn't yet got round to putting the blinds up.

Flossyfloof Mon 07-Mar-16 07:44:57

Pardon?

FigMango1 Mon 07-Mar-16 07:46:25

? What are you on about??

MTPurse Mon 07-Mar-16 07:47:12

I'm not sure about the 'secret' stuff but I think your Mum is doing your dd a favour by encouraging her to do NCS.

It really is great, it builds confidence and the activities they do are amazing. Charity work, independent living etc.

NoahVale Mon 07-Mar-16 07:52:37

but it is done in secret without my knowing. she doesn't discuss it with me, at all.
and saying Do it for me is really odd don't you think?

acasualobserver Mon 07-Mar-16 07:52:46

It's always much healthier if people's opinions are conveyed openly - speak to your mother about this.

I'm not sure if the curtain business is relevant.

MTPurse Mon 07-Mar-16 08:00:10

Maybe your mum thinks its a great idea and would do your dd good. Maybe she thinks she needs encouragement and support to make the right decision and thinks you are doing her a disservice by not encouraging this?

SquinkiesRule Mon 07-Mar-16 08:13:55

Why does she do everything in secret? Do you usually shoot down her ideas?

NoahVale Mon 07-Mar-16 08:15:56

but we haven't even discussed it, I am going with what my dd wants, which so far has been no,
I discussed it with a colleague, came home to tell dd perhaps she should, when it transpires this is what my dm has been saying.
just makes me feel uncomfortable.

Optimist1 Mon 07-Mar-16 08:25:08

I'm guessing that your mother considers that your daughter needs to become a bit more independent but doesn't want to cause offence or friction by saying so to you.

PatriciaHolm Mon 07-Mar-16 08:34:01

I would agree with optimist. Maybe she feels your DD needs a bit of encouragement, a bit of oomph behind her. If your DD is old enough to be contemplating NCS she's old enough to be having conversations on her own surely.

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 07-Mar-16 08:39:11

"Do it for me" is emotional blackmail - I have a close older relative who uses that line ... usually in a whiny voice... to try to puppet master family relationships and get people to do ("harmless") things they don't want to do which she feels they ought to want to do (not directly favours to help her out - if it were favours-/ help for the person asking of course it would be more straightforward and honest!).

I don't know why your mother does it though - could be that she is being manipulative and sneaky, or could be she doesn't think you will let her be heard openly and thinks you are not letting your DC make her own decisions...

rumbleinthrjungle Mon 07-Mar-16 08:39:40

Staggered that people feel it's fine to try and steer and pressure a child secretly behind the parents' back and are assuming with no evidence that their intentions are honourable, and the parents are obviously at fault somehow and so compelling the DM to achieve her worthy goal by devious means, which makes it perfectly ok. Oh and the OP is unreasonable for not embracing this with tears of gratitude.

What rabbit hole did I fall down this morning?

ApocalypseSlough Mon 07-Mar-16 08:46:45

rumble the DC is 15/16. Hardly manipulating a toddler.

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 07-Mar-16 08:59:11

Rumble has a point though.

Why the secrecy?

Mainly though, why "do it for me" - NCS is something a teen should be doing for themselves only, not for their grandmother; it smacks of manipulation, but I find that phrase does anyway, almost always... Asking a favour or for help is fine, but asking somebody to make a choice to do something like NCS (or many other things) "for" somebody else is manipulative.

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 07-Mar-16 09:04:15

Changing the subject when the teenager's mother walks into the room and not wanting her to hear what is being said would also sound "off" in most situations.

Its sneaky and secretive to try to persuade or pressure a young person to do something behind their parent's back, and sounds as if the DD is being talked into something she doesn't want to do for the wrong reasons ("do it for me" not "it'll be fun/ an adventure/ it'll look good on your 6th form / college application/ you'll meet new people and might make new friends/ it's something you might never get the chance to do again/ think seriously about it as it's a great opportunity" or whatever...)

icanteven Mon 07-Mar-16 09:04:52

Does your mother feel that you are struggling, or not offering your DD support in extracurriculars like this?

I ask about struggling, because, well, how long were there no curtains/blinds in your/your dd's room? She shouldn't have just gone ahead and done it, but it sounds like she is trying to help (albeit in a slightly ham-fisted manner).

PerspicaciaTick Mon 07-Mar-16 09:19:23

Is it a secret, or is it a private conversation between a GP and an older teenager?

At some stage parents have to cease being the mediator between their children and the rest of the world and part of that is not being involved in every conversation.

Dumdedumdedum Mon 07-Mar-16 09:22:14

Can't really help here but do understand what the OP is saying - I have a feeling my DM may have baptized her grandchildren whilst babysitting them, without their parents' knowledge, as she was afraid they would go to Hell otherwise.

OddBoots Mon 07-Mar-16 09:22:18

I'm not sure I understand the curtains and blind bit but from your title this is an ongoing thing and isn't that your mother has started to treat your dd as a young adult. If it is a regular thing then no, it isn't on really.

As a side note, it isn't good to have young people on NCS that don't want to be there, if they muck about it really spoils it for those who do want to be there.

Buzzardbird Mon 07-Mar-16 09:23:16

Why can't you discuss it with your Mother?

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 07-Mar-16 09:33:37

Dumdedeum "Can't really help here but do understand what the OP is saying - I have a feeling my DM may have baptized her grandchildren whilst babysitting them, without their parents' knowledge, as she was afraid they would go to Hell otherwise." shock

Is that actually possible? Wouldn't she have had to embroil herself in quite a web of lies (that the kids live with her and she has parental responsibility) and make people (godparents) complicit? Or will some denominations baptise anyone? The baptismal equivalent of Las Vegas Elvis weddings grin

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 07-Mar-16 09:39:20

Perspicia this "dd told me, she says, Do it for me
they have been ringing us for weeks and dd isn't too sure, she hasn't decided. I say it has to be her decision.
but out of my earshot my dm says things like this. I walked in on them yesterday and she stopped. She obviously doesn't want me to hear her patter with my dd ."

sounds secret and sneaky. If not why stpo talking when the OP comes in. Have conversations which the parent is not a part of of course - normal even with younger children - stopping talking when the parent comes in is less healthy. Its rude to do it even when all the people involved are adults.

The fact she is trying to talk the DD into something using emotional blackmail is another thing the people suggesting the grandmother is trying to help her DD gain some freedom are missing - "do it for me" is the very opposite of encouraging her to make her own decisions and behave like an independent young adult!

Dumdedumdedum Mon 07-Mar-16 09:41:23

German Christmas Jug, the RC church allows for "secret" baptism if a baby is in mortal danger of death. I don't know if my mother's understanding of her faith actually made her believe she was allowed by the Church to do this to save the soul of a perfectly health child, though.

GooseberryRoolz Mon 07-Mar-16 09:49:17

It sounds manipulative.

Does she have form for manipulative of self-centred behaviour?

If so, you have a struggle on your hands to impose and maintain appropriate boundaries.

If not, you need to set her straight on why secrecy and undermining parents is inappropriate with a child.

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