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saying I have a long way to go to be as good a mum as MIL (20 weeks pregnant)

(28 Posts)
quirkyrae Wed 06-Jul-11 22:07:06

I've not posted before and would love some feedback as to if I've lost the plot or not.
I am 20 weeks pregnant and in a general "sharing our fears about parenthood" with my DP I said I worried that his Mum would compare me as a mother to his Sister. I am very lucky with my in-laws as they are great: MIL ex special needs teacher and sister in law works in a nursery school. DP response, "you'll have to go a long way to be as good a Mum as my mum, she has set the bar very high." I was quite shocked at this, hard to articulate why when asked. It felt quite insensitive, which he isn't normally. To a huge degree he is right, what may have made it worse is that my mum wasn't such a paragon and is an alcoholic. How can I express how it made me feel when I'm not certain myself. All I know is that it wasn't helpful and felt wrong!

faverolles Wed 06-Jul-11 22:10:47

What a twatty thing for him to say, and a load of bollocks too!
You will be the best mother in the world for your child, and your dh needs to get on side with that or I predict problems in the future.

michelleseashell Wed 06-Jul-11 22:13:50

Completely agree with you. There's a big difference between being told what a wonderful mother your mother-in-law is and being told that you'll struggle to keep up to her standards!

diggingintheribs Wed 06-Jul-11 22:14:33


you need to stop comparing yourself - you are going to be the best mother this child will have. You may well discover things that SIL and MIL do that you are uncomfortable with and that is your right. Your lioness instinct must kick in - this is your baby and you do what feels right!

your DP also needs to understand two things
1) this is a nerve wracking time and you need reassurance and what he said was insensitive
2) if he says 'my mother wouldn't have done that' or such like, he will be sleeping at her house that night!

You don't mention his Dad? Was he perfect? if not, I would suggest your DP does some soul searching as you want your baby to have a good Dad who is also an equal parent

blackeyedsusan Wed 06-Jul-11 22:16:59

thats a bit like saying he has a long way to go to be as good a lover as your previous partner.. basically a kick in the proverbials... not blessed with sensitivity is he.

Eglu Wed 06-Jul-11 22:18:35

Your DP was incredibly insensitive.

Is he going to constantly compare everything you do with his Mum? If you want to do something a different way to what his Mum would do, will he side with her?

I would tell him how that made you feel.

Dozer Wed 06-Jul-11 22:20:17

What an awful thing to say.

cunexttuesonline Wed 06-Jul-11 22:21:31

that's a really shitty thing for him to say! As long as you love your baby and do your best for them, you will be a great mum.

inkystinky Wed 06-Jul-11 22:53:56

I am going to tell you something I dont want you to think Im a twat for saying this but - you will be a fantastic mum because you will do the best that you can smile my own Ds says similar about me all the time,my mum tried her best (i think) it wasnt v good sad we lived in squats ,refuges and caravans saw many different dads and lots of drug and alcolol abuse etc etc,I trained as a nursery nurse and work with teenagers now and im often told im a good mum -you make yourself a good mum by trying your best nobody teaches you!!

I think some boys put their Mums on pedestals I know my own H says how fabulous his own Mum was and FIL has said to him 'inky goes that extra mile- your Mum as fab as she was wouldnt have done x y or z' grin<<me (mil hated me)

exoticfruits Wed 06-Jul-11 23:01:13

Your baby wants you-not anyone else! Don't worry. Those that work with DCs are not necessarily the best mothers-it is entirely different. I think he was a bit insensitive-explain your feelings to him.

crje Wed 06-Jul-11 23:33:11

It hurts because your supposed to be his No1 woman in every way.
There should be no mention of anyone else when it comes to the baby.
Id tell him it felt like he had a preconcieved notion of how thing were going to be and that is not okay.

Poor you,that really was a horrible thing to say !!!!!

pigletmania Wed 06-Jul-11 23:34:53

What a nob. You haven't even had a baby yet, how does he know what sort of a mum you will be hmm.

Mumwithadragontattoo Thu 07-Jul-11 00:02:23

I agree with the others; that was a mean thing to say. He's putting you down before you've even started. Not a problem at all that he values his mum and enjoyed his childhood. In fact a very positive thing in a husband. But he is using it as a stick to beat you with before your baby is even born.

It's hard to imagine what it will be like being a mum before it happens but I'm sure you'll make a wonderful mum.

HelloKlitty Thu 07-Jul-11 00:03:19

It's like he got it won't have a long way to go becuse you'll be HIS child's Mother and therefore he should think of you as th bet person for the job!

He will do. When the baby arrives he will think you are the best.

ChaoticAngelinLimbo Thu 07-Jul-11 00:10:02

Well, it's obvious he has a long way to go before he becomes good enough to be the DP you deserve.

GotArt Thu 07-Jul-11 00:20:46

I don't think he saying as it has come across... a tasteless joke. However, inappropriate time to be saying it with you at 20 weeks pregnant with first.

superjobeespecs Thu 07-Jul-11 00:21:28

ah he sounds like a boob, maybe it was a slip of the toungue as in my mums great do like her and you'll be fine? still a bit nobbish but in a slightly less passive agressive way sort of.. as long as he understands that your mum and your going to do your best and make baby happy and contented your way then you'll be fine smile

Andrewofgg Thu 07-Jul-11 08:07:47

He's either an arsehole or just a bit thoughtless, only you can say which, but I expeoct you have said things to him which you have regretted a moment later. That's life.

pigletmania Thu 07-Jul-11 08:14:24

Your going to be the best mum for that baby, it's you it's going to turn to not your MIL. No parent is perfect, if you did find things difficult he should be by your side supporting you not criticising. You need to be assertive and let him know that comment is not on

pigletmania Thu 07-Jul-11 08:18:27

What is it with crap men this week on Mumsnet

melika Thu 07-Jul-11 08:27:47

He can't have meant it that way, he loves and admires his mom that much that it was said in praise of her.

What he should have done was evened up that statement with reassuring you.

How does anyone know how they are going to cope, you will be fine, a lot is instinct, you sound like a very caring person, you will ge great.

Scholes34 Thu 07-Jul-11 09:33:13

I think (hope) it was more of a compliment of his mother, than a comment on you, though in hindsight I'm sure he'd understand his insensitivity.

My FIL is constantly praising his own grandmother and saying she was the best mother/grandmother ever (he spent a lot of time with her), but the only message making it through to me is "you're not as good as her".

I'm sure your MIL doesn't think she's the best mother and is totally aware of her own shortcomings. Remember that she's not dealing with the stresses of bringing up a baby in 2011.

MatureUniStudent Thu 07-Jul-11 09:35:39

That last sentence made me think Scholes34 - what do you mean she is not dealing with the stresses of bringing up a baby in 2011? Do you think it was easier back then?

Scholes34 Thu 07-Jul-11 10:14:10

MatureUniStudent - no, not less stressful then, just stressful in a different way, ie that with all the experience MIL has, there'll be some areas she has no experience of.

My FIL goes on about the stresses his grandmother dealt with of having little money, no automatic washing machine or dishwasher, etc. I, as a mother, have to deal with having more demands on the money I have, ie expensive school trips and gadgets which are asked for and often refused, the need to turn out children in clean clothes, because having an automatic washing machine makes this "easier", and having to fit shopping, cooking, washing up and housework around a job. Just different stresses.

RubyGrace17 Thu 07-Jul-11 10:20:40

It was certainly insensitive. sad I'm sure you'll be a fantastic, loving mum to your baby and he/she will love you to bits. Being a teacher or working with children does not make someone a "better mum" than anyone else and as a teacher, I can confirm this smile

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