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To try to get out of this family lunch at sil's next week

(38 Posts)
lecce Wed 19-Oct-11 20:05:43

I will try to be brief. I am f/t teacher and dh is sahd to our dses who are aged 2 and 4. The 2 yo still feeds throughout the night (bf) and, because dh has ms and I am terrified of him getting ill, I deal with all the night wakings. I am shattered.

It is half-term next week and, as we usually do during the school school holidays, dh has arranged to take the dc to mil's for 2 nights. This enables me to spend an entire day and a half working, an evening on the wine and a morning and afternoon recovering and pottering grin. I love it and look forward to it hugely, especially since I don't really get any time to myself at all during term-time. It is also unlikey to happen during the Christmas holidays as we have so much on, so this will be my last chance for a rest before February.

However, sil also has ms but, unlike dh she has had it all her adult life and now has very limited mobility. She has finally agreed to sell her house and move to a bungalow nearer to her parents. She is understandably pretty sad about this and wants us to have a final lunch at hers on Sunday 30th.

Meanwhile, (sorry - I am trying to be as brief as I can) ds1 has just started at reception. He didn't go to pre-school, doesn't have many friends and we have been worried about him fitting in. After a reassuring meeting with his teacher on Monday, we feel a little better about this but still feel we need to help him out be organising play-dates etc. He has been invited to a haloween party on the 30th and we couldn't make it back in time if we go to sil's lunch.

The problem is, we have already got her to change the date for us once as she wanted to do it the weekend before but we asked her to postpone it as it is most convenient for dh to ge straight from mil's with the dc and I meet them there and after we all come home together. However, if we did this on the first weekend of the holiday, I wouldn't get my usual 2 nights home-alone as it would be too much of a rush for dh and the dc to leave on Friday.

So the question is, do we (very politely, of course) ask her to change it back to the orignal date and I forgo my treat (did I mention I'm knackered though grin), or just go and let ds miss the party sad or ask her politley to change it to a thrid date (this may not be possible as I know her move date is very soon.

What do you think?

fedupofnamechanging Wed 19-Oct-11 20:11:43

Would it hugely inconvenience others if she had to change the date again?

tbh, I don't think your child will suffer from missing out on a party at this early stage, so I think I'd be inclined to go to SIl's. It seems polite, given that she has already changed things to accommodate you.

Really what you should have said is that you couldn't make it, right from the start. Instead you've not made a clear decision to not go, so I think will now have to do it and put up with not having what you really want, for the sake of politeness and consideration for sil.

JarethTheGoblinKing Wed 19-Oct-11 20:12:17

YABU, sorry.

ScaredBear Wed 19-Oct-11 20:12:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

brassick Wed 19-Oct-11 20:13:28

I don't normally feel able to advise people on threads like this, but for some reason the answer to your dilemma seemed obvious to me, so I thought I would post!

I think you should go to your sil's & your ds miss the party. He will get plenty of other opportunities to make friends (or you can create them). I don't think you can ask her to change the date again, if it was me I would find that intensely annoying. You need your break & your da is only young, there's loads of time for him to make friends.


lecce Wed 19-Oct-11 20:31:33

Oh really, I thought as much!

I do know it won't be a huge problem for ds to miss the party but I kind of feel we have to grab every opportunity like this that comes along. We don't have friends with similarly aged dc nearby and it's not that easy to meet new people. I think dh has been hindered by being a man grin despite the fact that he has attended numerous groups etc over the last few years, and I am never able to be around at pick-up/drop-off time sad. Dh has made a huge effort to chat to other parents and it feels so wrong to turn down the first invitation we get from this set.

Jux Wed 19-Oct-11 20:34:21

OK, so your son has been invited to a party which clashes with your sil's lunch. You want your rest days which would clash with the original date of your sil's lunch.

Your choices are:

Skip your sil's lunch.
DS misses the party.
You miss your rest days.

Your ds can go to other parties; you could have a party for his class at some other point during half term. His teacher was reassuring, and it really is early days, so don't panic.

As you've already asked your sil to change the date and she has, you'd be in danger of becoming a PITA if you ask her to change again.

pink4ever Wed 19-Oct-11 20:35:44

YABU-but is there any way you could ask sil to make the lunch a little later so you could do both? Also why are you still bf a 2 year old during the night?-nowt against bf but surely your dc doesnt acctually need it as such at night now?-just curious.

lecce Wed 19-Oct-11 20:40:50

I would dearly love to stop, Pink and really tried over the summer - I was consistent and didn't feed for him for a whole two weeks but throughout that entire period he was so unsettled and upset at night. It was a total nightmare and there is noway I could cope with that level of sleep disturbance during term-time. No he clearly dosn't need it because dh doesn't feed him when they are at mil's and he is less unsettled than he is when I tried it! It will pass though...won't it?!

squeakyfreakytoy Wed 19-Oct-11 20:45:32

I am confused. If you are bfing 2yo through the night, how can your husband be taking them away for 2 nights?

lecce Wed 19-Oct-11 20:50:41

See post above - if I'm around he wants the comfort of milk during the night. If he has got a train without me and knows I am nowhere near him, he does without. They're not daft, 2 year-olds grin.

plainwhitet Wed 19-Oct-11 21:04:29

unusually from me I disagree with most of the posters.
I think your son should go to that party; these early things are important, and it would give you a chance to meet other parents.
Why not, send younger child and DH off; keep son at home and do some mother son type things with him (or sit him in front of a lovely dvd while you work); get a baby sitter for the evening if you want to go out for your glass of wine; DH goes to stay with MIL and to lunch with youngster then comes home.
Yes you forgo your total rest but when you have two children, only having one is a marvellous rest in itself; and he gets to go to the party.
Don't get SIL to change; she has enough hassle in her life; personally I would let DH make my excuses and just make sure you see her soon after she moves.

maras2 Wed 19-Oct-11 21:05:24

No but you are.Why make your difficult situation worse by not getting a full nights sleep to BF a 2 year old?If he can go without the breast if you're not around then stop doing it.I know that teachers have very stressful jobs so do SAHD's.especially those not in good health.I hope that you have a good half term break once you've come to some sort of resolution of your problem.(Maras dons flame retardant pj's and goes to bed knowing that she has niggled the BF forever posters.)

cottonreels Wed 19-Oct-11 21:08:28

yabu your sil has already tried to accommodate according to your wishes. I wouldnt ask again unless you know she is happy to be flexible. Actually, I still think that would be taking the piss, sorry.
A couple of other things though:
(If its relevent I also have a 2 year old, have been a f/t teacher and am now a sahm)
I honestly think you should knock the night feeding on the head. Youve obviously done brilliantly, but its time to tackle this one. Teaching is too hard to be doing that for that long.
Your 2 year old is old enough to understand now. Talk about it for a few days. Make up a story (maybe use some baby/infant photos of him) and say how he is growing, no longer a baby etc. Show him with a dolly (roleplay) say to dolly, this is your last feed until morning, night night as you tuck the dolly up etc.
Then after a few days of this, just stop.And mean it Offer him a cup of water for a few nights, keep repeating, no milk until morning and stick to it. Get your dh to do one wake up or your bedtime to 2am shift. Your ds will know when you mean it, children at school always respond to a firm teacher whon is totally confident (I know you know this already) - just act it if you are worried.
I think if it took two weeks before, withour success, there were some occasional night feedings or some wavering and uncertainty on your part - am I right?

Also, on another matter, my sil also has ms. I was told its not hereditary when I worried about concieving and passing on a ms gene, but if your sil and dh has it, and they are brother and sister, that would suggest otherwise surely? Its a bit late now that dd is already born but Im sure it should be something I should be aware of...

Conundrumish Wed 19-Oct-11 21:09:04

I'm not sure a single party will have much benefit for your DS, but why not use the fact that he is missing the party as an excuse to invite the birthday child to a playdate at your house after half term?

cjbartlett Wed 19-Oct-11 21:10:14

In all honestly if you work as a full time teacher I thought the benefit was spending the holidays with the kids?
At 2 and 4 you have the evenings to relax with your wine

natation Wed 19-Oct-11 21:15:18

Family event marking the end of an era in a relative's life versus a children's party, there would be no question for me which I would choose. You are lucky you have extended family, take this opportunity to be with them, your children will barely remember their party and they have the rest of their childhood to celebrate Halloween, put yourself in the place of your SIL and the person who invited you to the Halloween party, who do you think will remember the knock-back the longest and who will be most upset about it? Sorry to be so harsh, I don't mean to cause any offense, but I think your SIL needs your support, never take family for granted, they are a gift, not everyone is so lucky.

Putrifyno Wed 19-Oct-11 21:15:34

I think YABU. It seems very mean to get your SIL to change her plans again. Dd at 2 was having hot chocolate before bed, and a 4 yo might be disappointed to miss a party but his friendship group will change frequently over the next few years. It is not the end of the world.

lecce Wed 19-Oct-11 21:25:12

Cotton thank you for writing such a detailed reply, but please believe me when I say that I did a whole two weeks with no wobbles at all and it. Didn't.Fucking. Work. (Sorry, that anger is not directed at you but at life in general). I was so looking forward to the summer and getting ds's sleep sorted but, tired as I am, it's nowhere near as bad as those two weeks of sheer torture over the summer (and I obviously wasn't even working then). I have tried, as you describe, explaining it all to him and he very firmly says, "No, not yet!" I know how it sounds and what people will think reading this but that's just how it is. I do believe he will stop it in his own time at some point over the next couple of years (hopefully not that long) and, tbh, think we'll just ride it out.

Re the ms being heredtary: I looked into this before conceiving and, from what I understand, there is a genetic link but it is not straight-forwardly hereditary like some diseases are (sorry, can't think of any blush. My dc are more at risk than the general population, but there is still only a tiny chance of their getting it. It is also more commonly passed from mother to daughter than from father to son.

Actually, this reminds me of an unsettling conversation I had with sil shortly after the birth of ds1:

sil: (matter-of-fact voice) Well, lets hope he doesn't have the ms gene!

Me (hormal, sleep-deprived, slightly panicy voice): It's not really hereidtary, though, is it?

siL (very enthusiastically, bordering on chirpy): Well, because db and I both have it, it's called a cluster and there is a far greater risk than in other cases. They also think Mum might have had an isolated attack inher 20s but aren't sure...

Awkward silence

Me (stunned) Oh, right.

sil(reaslising she didn't need to sound so upbeat about it) So let's hope he hasn't got it...

More awkward silence.

Thanks for that, sil hmm I googled this at the time but didn't find anything...

abbierhodes Wed 19-Oct-11 21:38:45

My DS had to miss his 'first' party due to a family event, and we invited the child round to play as an apology. DS was invited back...and now they have a lovely friendship going, more so than if he'd just been one of 20 or so who attended the party.

I agree with the poster who says your SIL will be hurt if you don't place some importance on her event.

And I'm sorry, but I also agree with the person who questions why your 'rest' is so important. I'm a teacher, I work flat out in term time and that is the exact reason I hate being away from my children in the holidays. When does your DH get his 'rest'? he must be exhausted being a full time dad to a 4 year old and a toddler. If the genders were reversed and you were a man who needed your wife to take the children away for a few days every holiday I think more people would have commented on this tbh.

TadlowDogIncident Wed 19-Oct-11 21:41:37

Um, abbierhodes, there probably aren't many men who are working FT and doing all the night waking - I can entirely see why the OP wants a rest! She explained upthread that she does this because her DH has MS and needs to be careful.

I would let your DS miss the party and go to your SIL's lunch. Inviting the birthday child round seems a very good alternative plan.

cottonreels Wed 19-Oct-11 21:44:42

Bloody ell, bet that nights sleep was a bit lacking! Thanks for your info, I think thats pretty much how dp put it to me.
You sound like youre not wanting to tackle the feeding at night, so fair enough, its up to you. Its just that you wouldnt need those (pitifully short lived) two days rest quite so much if you had rest more evenly spaced - at night, during the week. If you change your mind, try calling your health visitor - I recently had a feeding issue with my 2 year old with solid food, and they were brilliant at sorting it out. Major changes in dds attitude almost from day 1.

cottonreels Wed 19-Oct-11 21:47:40

Also secong (third?) inviting the other child round for tea/play date. If not, could you organise your own little party for something - a pumpkin party, a late birthday party etc

abbierhodes Wed 19-Oct-11 21:51:53

I work full time, I do most of the night waking. I honestly think if the OP were written by a man he'd have been slated.

QuintessentialShadyHallows Wed 19-Oct-11 21:59:47

I am sorry, yabu.

I am also sorry, but you need to sort your 2 year olds sleeping out!

A 2 year old does not need to eat at night. He needs to sleep. He needs to learn to NOT feed at night, and you have to teach him this.

I know it is hard, you are muddling through, sleep-deprived as a dishcloth, and you have to chose between one rock, and another hard place. You need to break this pattern. And I am sorry, you need to involve your dh.

When my ds2 was a year old, my gp took one look at me and said "You are still breastfeeding through the night, arent you?" Too right, I was. He told me that the best thing I could teach my child now was good sleep habits. My ds did not need nutrition at night, he needed sleep. And I needed sleep. He came up with suggestions how to sort this in one week, involving dh taking the night shift with ds, and me staying away. It worked. Within one week my ds was sleeping through the night, and life became ten times better! You owe it to yourself, and your family to try to survive ONE week of utter sleep madness, but it is worth it.

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