Dealing with baby in big family

(16 Posts)
Jessiejane123 Fri 04-Mar-16 14:59:54

How do others feel having a baby when you have a big family? As hubbys family is big, we have to see a lot of them and often a lot of people around DD at once. She just ends up as pass the parcel and quite frankly it irritates me.

My in laws seem to think that as they see her once a week and I have her every day, that when they are around its 'their time' and it feels like I should take a back seat.

On days where we spend the whole day with them, they feed her, play with her, nurse her and well I'm just kind of sat there as an on looker, watching, waiting, wondering when I might get to have a hold of my child again.( my first baby btw)

I understand they want to spend time with her, get that, but it's like they want to be the ones to do everything. Even for the 5 minutes she's with me, they are in her face or mil will go 'come to nanna'. I feel like my role as mum has to take a back seat whenever they are around. If she cries, they try to settle her even if she's clearly not settling and will say 'when mummy goes back to work we will look after you for 1 day so you need to get used to us'.

We have to spend all weekend with them as SIL is up and she hasn't seen DD for 2 months, so it'll be even worse. When she hasn't got her, the in laws will, and well what about me? I've told my hubby how I feel and he says I am being selfish as his mum and dad don't get her every day like I do. But as I've said, it feels like I am expected to act like a stranger for 1 day a week and I hate it, it makes me dread seeing any of his family as they are so possessive. Anyone in the same boat?

Indantherene Fri 04-Mar-16 15:51:48

My ILs were exactly like that. Do you have to spend a whole day a week with them? When do you see your own parents?

magpie17 Fri 04-Mar-16 15:59:33

My in-laws are exactly the same. At Christmas I barely saw my own son as he was passed around so much and then he got grumpy and everybody complained! We see a LOT of my PIL but they don't really want to see us, just DS in fact I'm pretty sure MIL would rather I wasn't there. If DS is asleep they want to wake him up, insist on feeding him and she has got this weird thing about changing his nappy - takes him away and then carries him around with no nappy on for ages. Cue more grumpiness from DS...

I can be a bit pfb so try not to hover around or be too precious but it does annoy me a lot. I am NC with my own parents though so am very cautious about rocking the boat as I feel like we should have a good relationship with one set of parents if we can!

Jessiejane123 Fri 04-Mar-16 16:05:32

It's good to know I am not being OTT, like hubby is making out I am.
They are a very tight family indeed. So tomorrow as its a catch up with SIL aswell, it will be an all day thing from 12 until 9 ish, then we have to spend Mother's Day with them, my mum is coming too.

I just don't get it! I would never act that way with anyone else's baby, it's their child!! I will love my grandkids but I won't hog them. Wish hubby understood because then I would feel a lot more relaxed.

kiki22 Sat 05-Mar-16 11:18:10

I never can never understand this I feel that my mum and mil do take over and as soon as papa walks in DS forgets who mum and dad are to me it's amazing, my child is so loved why would his grandparents not want to do everything with him he's amazing of course they want to feed and change, when babies are small that's how you bond. If mil was in my house every day doing it then it would be annoying but once a week sit back and thank your lucky stars your child has so much love.

It does not take over your role or make you less important in your child's life, they are not trying to take from you they want to share this amazing person they love so much, let them your child will grow up having close bonds with them it can't be a bad thing. It is up to you I'm not slating parents who don't feel the same but this is how I feel about family.

lornathewizzard Sat 05-Mar-16 11:22:02

I agree with Kiki. I think it's a great thing, and quite frankly I appreciate the break. But then I come from a big family myself.

PennyHasNoSurname Sat 05-Mar-16 11:23:10

How old is the baby? If she is still tiny, maybe just insist that when she is sleeping she is to be left alone. Also, I read somewhere that feeds for the first few months should really ideally be done by mum and dad only, maybe just lie and say MW has advised this as shes having feeding challenges?

Jessiejane123 Sat 05-Mar-16 12:35:06

I honestly wish I didn't feel that way and I was more relaxed. But I still feel I am obliged to take a back seat and it can't help but irritate me. For me when a baby is crying and you've walked around the room 10 times, tried to rock it etc and they won't settle, it's time to pass them back to one of their parents. They don't do that and make it hard for me to approach them to take her back, by saying the 'well you've got to get used to us' etc.

She's 8 months old.

kiki22 Sat 05-Mar-16 15:22:28

Does she have to get used to them? Is she going to be with them? Mil takes ds out without me to get him to herself because if I'm there he wants me settles fine without me.

If its been more than 5 mins I would take the baby back, part of being in a big family is finding your voice or you will get trampled on. Its just the way to go about it I would just go and take ds back saying lets give granny 5 mins of peace. There's a balance you all need to find I think

Jesabel Sat 05-Mar-16 15:31:00

I think you have to start being more assertive. Ask for her back, take her back - she's your baby. There's plenty of time for her to get used to them. Just do it with a pleasant smile.

Caterina99 Sat 05-Mar-16 15:57:04

we live abroad so see family every few months if that. My DS is 8 months too and I love it when parents and inlaws visit and want to hold and play with him all the time so I don't have to. Someone else to fight him over a nappy change - knock yourself out! But then we're all different, and maybe I'd feel like you if it was every week. Plus my family are considerate, I think, and don't try to take over or undermine me.

Can't you go out and leave her with them for a few hours? Then you get some alone time and they get time with her without you feeling second best. I know at gatherings you can't do that, but I'd just appreciate it for what it is, them wanting to spend time with her and you not having to spend hours building towers to knock down or whatever your child likes to do. They're probably trying to help you out. It's odd that they don't bring her back when she cries though, that would definitely annoy me!

Caterina99 Sat 05-Mar-16 16:01:41

I sound like I am happy to palm my child off to anyone - I just agree with those above. Your family love your child and want to spend time with her. Appreciate it as them building a good relationship and not trying to take from yours in any way. Many people would love to be in your position

LizKeen Sat 05-Mar-16 16:13:26

At 8 months it is all well and good, but what about when DD is 2 or 3 and they still expect you to take a back seat? Then it moves into undermining and that isn't good. We are there right now, and finally DH is having to say something to his parents. They mean well, but they are seriously undermining us and I am sick of feeling redundant in their company. It is disrespectful. I have started asserting myself and even SIL is backing me up, when she used to do it too!

I would point out to your DH that they have had their turn at being parents, and not having your DD every day is not something that needs to be made up for. It is how it should be.

Like a PP I am NC with my own family, and I think that is why I have let so much slide. I love that DD has a great relationship with them, I just don't think that should be at the expense of my role as her mother.

Needing to get used to them is crap too. My DM used to say that. It is just a way of getting to keep the child despite the fact it wants its parent. It is, again, undermining and disrespectful. Your children should want comfort from you, and at such a young age should never be denied it. Eventually my DM was trying to assert herself as more important than me in DD's life, and that was one of the reasons I went NC.

MrsSteptoe Sat 05-Mar-16 16:21:46

I've told my hubby how I feel and he says I am being selfish as his mum and dad don't get her every day like I do
Yup. That's because his mum and dad are not her parents. You are.
This would drive me mad, OP, and it also suggests that you're going to find yourself seriously undermined when your relationship starts to involve a bit of (for want of a better word) discipline of your child rather than just babycare. Set a precedent now -- when you want your baby back, say "thanks, I'll take her now - no, really, give her to me please" and don't take no for an answer.
I do realise that it might cause friction, but their behaviour is causing friction anyway - it's just that you're the only person who's feeling it. You might as well at least assert yourself and get what you want.

Harvey246 Sun 06-Mar-16 22:28:46

I could have written this myself. Exactly the same situation happened to me. It was did ridiculous, his mum wanted to take my daughter overnight at 4 days old, every time I went round it was 'come to nanna' when my baby cried I had to go and prise her off them and I was made to feel like a terrible person because they 'only' saw her once a week... I loved being on maternity leave but genuinely the way they were had me so stressed out i really get like I was getting pretty down at one point. Saying this as someone who is now 15 months on, looking back I genuinely don't regret any of the times I took her back from them, made them wait to hold her, declined an invitation etc. it might sound harsh but they are only little once and your mil has had her turn at being a mum. They also look after my lg one day a week while I work so they have plenty of time to see her and spend time with her now. The first year is about you and your baby IMO everyone else can wait, for me bonding with grandparents (which is lovely don't get me wrong) is for later on. You and your baby are the priority right now.

Lightbulbon Sun 06-Mar-16 22:32:46

Leave them to it and go and get some child free time for yourself.

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