DM doesn't help me practically with DCs

(164 Posts)
AaaaaaarghhhWhereAreMyKeys Mon 07-Mar-16 11:16:15

Just that really:-

I am single-parent, DM encouraged me to get rid of my EX, which she was right to do as he treated me abysmally.

I've been in bed with the flu all weekend. No offer of help. However, she's very keen to come down and celebrate DCs b'day which is coming up soon, she wants to go out for dinner.

DM did look after DCs recently as I had an something really important to do. It only took about an hour and when I called to say I was finished, she was desperate for me to come home and wanted to go out for lunch - it was after 2 by then so she should have fed them something already anyway. As soon as we'd eaten she went home. I would have preferred either some time to myself or help with washing or gardening or ANYTHING.

When I mentioned needing help with childcare on the two days that school will be closed for elections, she changed the subject.

It seems she only wants to be there for the good times. She was like this when I was growing up, crap parent, but very keen to parade us about on ceremony.

AIBU?

AnyFucker Mon 07-Mar-16 11:17:09

YANBU

I have one of these too

CrazyDuchess Mon 07-Mar-16 11:19:09

Did you ask her outright for help??

PansyGiraffe Mon 07-Mar-16 11:22:09

You knew what she was like when you were young. Nothing has changed. You were right to get rid of your ex, whether she encouraged you or not doesn't affect you acknowledging that was right. Unfortunately you can't rely on her so don't try. Accept her on her terms or don't involve her.

poocatcherchampion Mon 07-Mar-16 11:25:00

I'm in this club too!

shinynewusername Mon 07-Mar-16 11:26:04

She is not going to offer or take hints, so why don't you just ask directly? Nothing to lose.

I know the MN line is that, "They are your DC, not the GPs' " but I think it is perfectly reasonable to ask for help when you are ill.

AaaaaaarghhhWhereAreMyKeys Mon 07-Mar-16 11:33:28

No I didn't on the day she wanted to go for lunch, apart from help with looking after the kids for an hour to two.

It's good to know I'm not the only one. Perhaps it's a generational thing.

I think i get more jealous of others with truly helpful parents than of those with a decent DH!

Oysterbabe Mon 07-Mar-16 11:36:31

I think yabu.
They're your kids and she's under no obligation to provide childcare.

maydancer Mon 07-Mar-16 11:46:05

DM did look after DCs recently as I had an something really important to do. It only took about an hour and when I called to say I was finished, she was desperate for me to come home and wanted to go out for lunch - it was after 2 by then so she should have fed them something already anyway. As soon as we'd eaten she went home. I would have preferred either some time to myself or help with washing or gardening or ANYTHING

I think the problem is tha you are one of those 'give em an inch and they'll take a mile people'
Your DM did help you.(You ought to have fed them before you left if you had them til 1pm).But then you wanted her to set to and tackle your gardening and laundry!

MrsEricBana Mon 07-Mar-16 11:49:29

Hmmm, my dm is the same. At the end of the day they're your responsibility and she's already had her parenting days but I agree you'd think a dm would want to help a struggling dd.

Whatthefreakinwhatnow Mon 07-Mar-16 11:51:09

I'm with maydancer, sounds like your DM is actually pretty hands on and helpful! Maybe try being more grateful and less like she owes you anything. If you seem appreciative,she may feel less taken advantage of and more inclined to help.

00100001 Mon 07-Mar-16 11:52:33

YABU. Why should she have to help you? confused Sure it's nice if she does. But she's under no obligation to.

Look at getting a child minder?

bibbitybobbityyhat Mon 07-Mar-16 11:53:01

I'm sorry but I also think, bottom line, yabu. It is fine to feel envious of people who have helpful parents, just as it is fine to feel envious of people with more money (if you must) or better looks. Those are quite natural feelings but you are still wrong to expect your mother to want to look after your children. Some people just don't enjoy it!

GruntledOne Mon 07-Mar-16 11:57:17

Perhaps it's a generational thing.

No, it isn't. I do get tired of this ageist stuff being constantly trotted out. It's a "people are different" thing.

cuckoooo Mon 07-Mar-16 11:57:26

YABU.

Just because your mother encouraged you to get rid of a crap DH (which you probably would have done without her encouragement), you are expecting her to be there at your beck and call. That is unreasonable.

Don't rely on her, or expect her to magically be different to how she has always been.

As hard as it is, you have to just plainly learn to cope on your own.

Ginkypig Mon 07-Mar-16 11:57:47

As much as it would be nice to have help your life will be better if you stop expecting/wanting it.

What I mean by that is she is your parent and because of that we think they should step up when we need them, not just practically but emotionally, when they choose not to it hurts much more than in other areas of life because we're genetically programmed to "need"

You know your mum isn't great so stop trying to get her to be mum and try to see her as a woman you love and want in your life. If you don't try to get more from her than that she can't hurt you.

It sounds like I'm letting her off the hook but what im saying is she's lacking only she can change (she very likely won't) so change your view if her to protect yourself.

I have a surface relationship with my mum. Iv not "needed" her since I left home, that is the only way I can have her in my life!

KingLooieCatz Mon 07-Mar-16 12:02:58

It would be nice if she helped you more, especially if you are on your own. However, it seems from your post that you handed your kids over at 1.00 without having given them lunch, which is a bit off, unless there was some reason you couldn't feed them first and you had discussed meal arrangements beforehand. My parents are up for some childcare but they do prefer to be clear about who is responsible for meals and I would feel bad to drop a meal for my one child on them without notice or agreement. They don't have a houseful of kids any more, they don't keep a cupboard of child friendly food anymore.

BlueMoonRising Mon 07-Mar-16 12:03:13

If she had your kids for an hour, ending after two - why didn't you feed them before they went to hers, especially if she has form for not being terribly involved with them?

FigMango1 Mon 07-Mar-16 12:05:59

Yabu, you chose to have your children and it's not for you now expect everyone else to help raise them with you.
And her encouraging you to leave your Dh doesn't mean that she must now fill that role. Sounds like you expect that she must step up because she helped in you leaving him.
I think your attitude of 'expecting' may be putting her off somewhat. If she isn't the naturally wanting to help more then not much you can do.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 07-Mar-16 12:06:03

The crappy parent back then is still a crappy parent now. It's bad luck but there's no big shock here, it's history repeating itself. She's a poor support system that is not firing on all cylinders.

What you want your DM to do as Granny and what your DM can deal with are two completely different things. Sorry to pile on the misery but I'm wondering if the reason she encouraged you to split from your ex was less about you and more to do with her comfort.

Katenka Mon 07-Mar-16 12:12:48

I could kind of see your point until this

DM did look after DCs recently as I had an something really important to do. It only took about an hour and when I called to say I was finished, she was desperate for me to come home and wanted to go out for lunch - it was after 2 by then so she should have fed them something already anyway. As soon as we'd eaten she went home. I would have preferred either some time to myself or help with washing or gardening or ANYTHING.

why does you DM have to ensure you get time on your own or do your washing or gardening?

If my mum was looking after my kids from 1pm I would have fed them.

If you didn't ask when you had flu, Yabu.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Mon 07-Mar-16 12:12:51

Does your DC want to go for dinner for his/her birthday? If they do, then fair enough. If they want to do X, then just inform her that's what's happening for their birthday.

And sadly, I agree with DonkeysDon'tRideBicycles

Well I think it's quite understandable to hope for some real help from your DP's (both parents and partners actually!)

But if they' been wanting (AKA a bit crap) as parents they will probably also be so as grandparents.

Friends can be a better bet for building a support network for many?

BertPuttocks Mon 07-Mar-16 12:25:22

My DM was a 'parader' when we were children too.

She too is very much not interested in doing anything with/for my DC, and only spends a few minutes with them once every couple of years or so. The irony is that due to the age gap between me and my siblings, I spent a large proportion of my secondary school years looking after her children for her. hmm

AaaaaaarghhhWhereAreMyKeys Mon 07-Mar-16 12:25:55

Maydancer you're way way way off there.

I agree she shouldn't feel obliged to provide free childcare. However it would be nice if she could help where she can. I do understand not offering to help when i'm ill, as she'll catch it herself. But am a bit annoyed that she was so dismissive about the election days.

TBH I am kind of resigned to it all, she's always been the same, but we're often expected to turn up to family events etc. Not long ago we went down to stay on Friday night (for a family b'day), she insisted I didn't feed the DCs before leaving, that we'd all eat together when we arrived. I could see things weren't running to plan and offered to make DCs some pasta, but she still insisted. Dinner wasn't ready till 11pm, it was Duck and Beetroot, DCs ate virtually nothing.

Re. Going for lunch. I really wasn't in the mood for it because of what I'd had to do that day which wasn't very pleasant.

Hope this makes sense, my brain is still a bit foggy.

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