Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
My mum has ruined my first days with my second baby. Long and moany.(58 Posts)
I had DC2 on Thursday and got home from hospital last night. My parents came to visit us on the ward at the first available opportunity on Thursday and my mum came in again that evening while my dad minded DC1 for us. That evening, it became clear my mum was intending for her and my dad to come to our house today, our first day at home.
I asked her to hold off and give us our first day to recover and be together at home as a family of four for the first time. She wasn't happy, kept pushing me and accusing me of trying to keep my dad out. I was WTF? at this until I found out yesterday that my dad hadn't even held the baby yet as my mum had hogged her the entire visit - I hadn't noticed. In spite of our conversation she then apparently informed my DH that they would be coming round on Saturday.
My dad came in to see us yesterday afternoon (Friday) while my mum was working so managed to get a good cuddle. Just after this DH reiterated to my dad about us wanting a quiet day with no visitors today. We were discharged late evening yesterday. She had texted me normally during the day and I had responded normally saying we were fine, waiting for discharge.
I thought it odd that she hadn't been in touch last night or this morning to ask if we got home ok/how the first night was etc. Then I had a panicked secret call earlier from my dad while she was in the shower. She was in a complete state all last night, crying, they are being denied access to my baby, nobody wants her or loves her, she might as well end it all. He was begging for them to be allowed to visit tomorrow as he couldn't handle this. I was so shocked. I had every intention of them visiting tomorrow and said this.
I was pretty angry too at what I feel to be a ridiculous overreaction to having to wait one day when they've already met her twice in her first few hours. I see it as emotional blackmail and manipulation, which she has a history of - her feelings have always been very easily hurt and I've always had to do things I didn't want to in order not to upset her. She does have a tendency to make things about her and has a set idea of how she wants things to be that you have to go along with, e.g. I'm her only DD so we always had to have shopping days together (never my thing), she had to do certain things as a grandmother whether we wanted her to or not, constantly buying stuff for the DCs meaning we couldn't.
Later this morning my dad called again with my mum's knowledge this time. He asked (performing for her benefit) about coming to visit tomorrow. I said yes, I had assumed you would be. He then asked after me and the baby very briefly and I heard him ask my mum if she wanted a word, which she refused! I said goodbye and hung up, upset.
Now I want to call her and say if you're not talking to me because I don't want visitors today, you're not coming at all. But this would inflame things and might make the situation irretrievable. However I am so angry and hurt that she has put her desire to be supergran and see my new baby as much as possible over what we want, and me, her daughter who has just had a second baby and is going through the first few newborn days again with DC1 to think of too. Is this really my mum, is this what she has always been? It's all I can think of when I should be enjoying my new baby, recovering and starting our new life with DC1 and DH. I don't feel I can let it pass. How can I when she actually refused to speak to me on the phone?
The comments about nobody loving her must refer to the fact that the extended family can't go away for her significant birthday this month as I've just had a baby, DB1 travels internationally for work and is unavoidably away, and DB2 has recently moved to the other side of the world and can't come back till later in the year for a delayed celebration. Bad timing but surely she can see we can't do anything about it and really the reasons are all positive things meaning her three DC are getting on well in their lives. Also, we live under an hour away and see my parents most weeks, at least once a week, so they are far from hard done by re contact with me and our DC1.
I know this is long, detailed and dull and really just needed to get it down. I don't know what to do now. Call her? Call my dad? (they are out so would have to call one of their mobiles). I am not apologising or justifying asking them to wait till tomorrow so what am I calling for? She's not going to accept she's behaved abominably, is she. And actually given what my dad said about her 'breakdown' last night I'm concerned about her mental health.
She sounds like a total nightmare, has she always been this much of an emotional vampire?
Don't call her and don't fret about her mental health, she's not going to do herself any harm, it's all manipulation.
Have you seen the Stately Homes threads on the relationships section, sometime, come over and have a chat, lots of us (me included) have mothers (or other relatives) just like yours.
If you are happy for them to visit tomorrow then no need to call them today, you have already said they can come tomorrow.
Tbh OP if you know your mum has form for EB then this is something you are going to need to deal with soon (not now as you need to recover).
Pick your battles OP and this weekend is probably not the best time for you to tackle this one.
Congratulations on the birth and do not let her ruin today for you
Your mother sounds like a nightmare and your father is enabling her behaviour.
She hasn't got MH issues IMHO.
But I would get over to the "stately homes" thread pronto if I were you!
She sounds utterly narc to me
I'm sorry she has spoilt this special time for you.
But you do have it your power to prevent it happening again.
You're not being silly at all, she needs telling firmly that you won't be manipulated. So does your dad.
I'm not one for following the usual mn advice of banning visitors for weeks or whatever but you've been more than fair.
I'd be rethinking your invitation after all the emotional blackmail.
Have few days on your own with your new baby. In fact, have a few weeks. That'll learn her!
Wow. She sounds so selfish.
I would call and tell her that her behaviour has made you feel very upset at a time when YOU are the one who needs understanding.
She needs to respect your wishes.
What you have asked is more than reasonable considering she and your father have already seen the baby and spent lovely quality time before anyone else for that matter!
She should be putting your needs before her own selfish wants and to not do so is frankly appalling behaviour. Regardless of whether she is excited (which you appreciate), this time is about YOU, your family and your new baby.
Everyone (including her) need to take a back seat for the moment and put their own feelings to one side. The fact that she doesn't understand this just shows how selfish she is behaving.
The 'ending it all' is utterly ridiculous!!!
From personal experience I suspect she will react to this by threatening or pretending to have no feelings of love towards new baby and you will be blamed for 'pushing her out'. This is typical behaviour of a manipulative person. And if she did react this way i would tell her exactly how fickle and wrong that behaviour is.
Congrats on your new baby. I'm sorry you are going through this emotional stress at a time you should be being shielded from it.
I don't have any advice but I can associate with your first days being ruined. When inlaws came to the hospital to see DS they stayed for less than 5 mins. They never asked how I was. Just looked at DS, Fil just tutted then they left. They never bought anything for DS or had anything to do with him. To this day I don't know what I had done as I'd only ever been nice. I was so upset in the hospital as I'd had a difficult birth & PND started straight away. I've had another 2 DC since & they aren't interested.
Thanks for responding, am just reading through while trying to keep baby awake long enough to bf!
I always thought I was an only child...do we have the same parents?!
My position would be "we need quiet time so DC1 can bond with the new baby, so we'll let you know when it's OK to visit" and then never call.
Bloody hell, you only gave birth two days ago and her selfish histrionics are completely unacceptable. They wouldn't be acceptable from a three year old!
I am actually quite cross with your dad, for his 'secret' call, telling you how upset your mum had been, and all the emotional blackmail stuff. He has to have known that that would upset you - and yet he decided to do that to you, on your day of peace and quiet and family bonding. He should have protected you from that - there was no good reason for him to tell you.
You just had a baby.
You should resting and enjoying the children.
Your mum probably knows saying she might end it all will cause to worry that's why she said it.
Can your husband/partner answer calls and the doorbell and tell a white lie that your are sleeping for a few hours and say come over tomorrow instead, that would give you another day to rest and decide how you feel about this.
Is it wrong that I want to know what she was like when your firstborn arrived?
Obviously, she's totally out of order and your dad was doing a little bit of enabling with his secret phone call. I wouldn't bother calling her unless it's to cancel, it'd just be feeding the drama. She sounds very self involved.
If it's any consolation, after I had DD, MIL took to phoning on an hourly basis (DH would come home from the hospital to 16+ messages on the answerphone)....... She would ring us in the middle of the night for months afterwards as we would 'be up anyway'
After their behaviour I wouldn't let that bitch step over the threshold for a good long while, if ever.
If it's any consolation my mum went a bit nuts like this when I had my second. She insisted on visiting the hospital even though I didn't want to see her ( I was still throwing up from the epidural) . It wasn't visiting hours and she also bought my son a pink hat. And a second hand item when I had specifically told her I didn't want second hand stuff for the baby. It took a while to get back on an even keel (18 months!) but we are ok again now.
I now think she just loves tiny babies and thought this was her last chance to get a cuddle with one. But at the time I never wanted to see her again!
Just ignore her and focus of you and the baby. She'll come round.
OP is she usually like this and if not how old is she?
I found that having a baby stirred up a lot of very deep stuff about the relationship with my own mother and made things very raw for a while; apparently this is normal (especially when you first become a mother, but surely with later births too) which is perhaps why this has upset you such a lot and left you questioning your mother's behaviour more generally. She does sound like a bit of a nightmare to be honest - and actually if she wasn't usually like this, if this was really out of character, you probably wouldn't be agonising so much but would find it easier just to say 'woah, that's really out of line!'.
But just to be clear - this is dreadful behaviour! She's making your birth all about her. My FIL is like this - fortunately I don't have to see him very often, but BOTH times I did within 6 months of having DS his chosen topic of conversation was how much harder labour is for the man than the woman!!
If I were you I'd detach from her op. I had similar problems with a very needy DM who chose 10 days after the birth of my second ds & while I was still recovering from a c section to take an overdose because "you have your own family now and don't need me anymore"
It's hard I know but I would not get involved on any of her emotional dramas, ignore and focus on your snuggly newborn and let her deal with her own emotions.
Congratulations on your new baby!
God OP. I can really sympathise. You mum sounds very similar to mine...
My advice: enjoy your newest squidgy one and get your DH to call them tomorrow to let them know if/when it's convenient for you guys and don't worry if its not and you need to cancel. This is not a time to be putting anyone else before the four of you and get your DH to be the gatekeeper.
Then you may need to work on boundaries. My DM oversteps them constantly, but even being aware of my own boundaries I feel slightly more in control of things rather than floundering under FOG (fear, obligation, guilt) which also confuses the hell out of me because its a ridic situation whereby I feel trapped in a lose-lose situation that she's created.
I'm sorry you've had to deal with this. Please try to push it to one side if you can and enjoy these special times. I tend to get bogged down with these kinds of scenarios and play it round and round in my head then somehow find the ability to park it and move on (whether DM will or not is neither here nor there). I try to control how much time I'm prepared to spend on thinking/worrying about it.
Best of luck and as I said, enjoy those snuggles!
God, this is what my parents are like. My poor DSis had my father doing the "mum feels very shut out, you really must talk to her right now" TEN MINUTES post partum.
I moved overseas, works well for me.
"She's not going to accept she's behaved abominably, is she. And actually given what my dad said about her 'breakdown' last night I'm concerned about her mental health".
She will infact never apologise nor accept any responsibility for her actions. I wouldn't let your dad off the hook either - he is enabling her in all this overall dysfunction from whence you came. It is NOT your fault your mother is like this; infact I think she is behaving in all the usual ways that a narcissist would behave. I would read up on narcissistic personality disorder and see if it fits in with what you already know.
Re-raise your own boundaries as of now re your mother and father; they are set way too low. Also posting on the "well we took you to Stately Homes" thread may well help you as well.
Congratulations on your new baby!
You have your own family to worry about--kids and DH come first. You can't be looking after Crazy Mum and Enabling Dad.
You were clear with your Dm about what your needs were. The fact that she is choosing to see it as rejection is her problem , not yours.
Don't buy into it, don't phone her and just act normally when they next come to see baby. Any other reaction is enabling her to carry on with her melodramatic ways.
Try to put it out of your mind. Your request to have the first day to yourselves was completely reasonable. Your dad should have told your mum to get a grip and not involved you.
Word of caution from a former midwife here. Tomorrow you might well be entering that wonderful stage of 'the blues'. Basically you cry all day . Totally normal and not to be confused with pnd. So if they are coming your DH needs to be your protector. Can you find some jobs for them to do? That's what mums do for their daughters when they give birth, right? A nice long list of things you'd be so grateful for because you are feeling so fragile.
Then draw up the boundaries and do not agree to more visits than you actually want.
Good luck and please, please enjoy your darling little baby and do not let this stupid behaviour spoil your precious first days.
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.