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To think I'm not a shit mother?!

(48 Posts)
waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 16:06:02

My dd(4) is sick and couldn't go to school yesterday.

I usually visit my mother and phoned to say I wouldn't be around as she's sick. She has a temperature and cough/cold.

My mum thinks every time they're sick I should take them straight to the doctor. I don't think she needs a doctor as my doctor is constantly doling out antibiotics whether he thinks people need them or not! (Eg: it's viral so there's nothing to do but wait it out. But I'll give you an antibiotic anyway?!)

Anyway when I phoned she was on about taking her straight to the doctor. I said fine I'll get her checked and made an appointment for 5pm. At 4pm dd fell asleep. I have a 6yo and 2yo. Her temperature had improved, I was making dinner etc and I forgot to go for the appointment.

Anyway, last night I had a night out with a friend. I never go out so this was a rare occurrence. Nothing mad, a load of few drinks and a gossip. I went out at 9.30 got back at 2.30. DH was home at 7.15 to take over.

This morning I phoned my mum. She had seen my friend at a dance class that dd and friend's dd go to (mum is involved in the group) and friend was in recovery! My dd didn't go to class as she's not well.

I mentioned that I hadn't taken dd to the doctor and my mum went off at me! She said "I can't believe you, as a mother, didn't bother to bring your sick child to the doctor because you were too worried about going out with your friends"!

I explained what had happened. How I wasn't out until hours later and I in no way abandoned dd, who isn't that sick anyway, but she was having none of it.

Now, my mum never approves of me doing stuff with friends anyway. If I say I'm going for coffee/lunch/drinks it's either silent treatment or disapproving hmphing!

But making out like I don't give a shit about my child because I went out after her bedtime, leaving her with daddy and having let her sleep instead of dragging her to a doctors appointment that I don't think she needed has made me feel like total crap!

Sorry it's so long! But; WIBU to go out and does that make me an awful parent? sad

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 18:15:36

Dum that sounds very familiar to me. It's all a bit shit isn't it!

I'm a bit shocked about what you're all saying but I can see that it makes sense. Just, when you grow up with it I suppose you get used to it?

I just don't think the GP is as selective as he could be when handing out prescriptions. I hate to admit that in the past I've gone against my instincts and taken them and they've been given medication that I genuinely don't think they'd needed! There's been times when I haven't even bothered filling then prescriptions and they've gotten better and mum just assumes they're better because of the meds!

The thing is; along with the bad there's so much good in her. I even fe guilty typing this stuff about her! And a couple of my sisters are the exact same way as her. They're exhausting sometimes!

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 18:17:10

She's never had much of a social life.
She has a couple of long time friends but since retirement age she's joined a local women's group and has taken up lots of new hobbies and made some new friends.

When she has stuff on she just goes and does it and it's such a relief because I can just stay home and study or play with DS or even just get some housework done!!

Whoknowswhocares Sat 09-Feb-13 18:33:54

You are an adult. You do not have to answer to your mother, or take her stupid advice
Stop telling her the ins and outs of your life in such minute detail. And ignore her whitterings when it suits you. You sound much more sensible than her anyway, so start trusting your own instincts

DumSpiroSpero Sat 09-Feb-13 18:44:21

Yes it is walter! And harder in a way when there is a lot of good there too.

I'm an only child & my mum will pop over & do housework for me, does on DD and has helped me out financially to an extent that is blush to even think about, let alone admit to. She has friends and was always encouraging about me making friends, having kids round etc.

She had a few very unpleasant things happen to her as a child which were then compounded by the sudden deaths of her parents, and combined with the fact that she & my DH don't get on, it makes for very fraught relationships at times.

minouminou Sat 09-Feb-13 18:49:25

It's daft to go running to the GP with every sniffle anyway, as you're just sharing it with everyone else in the waiting room.
Had this from MIL a couple of weeks ago when DS and I had that awful flu bug...well, I had it, he had a sore throat and a temp that cleared up v rapidly.
She was wondering why I didn't take him straight to the GP, so I explained why; because all I'd achieve was a suggestion of Calpol from the GP while we were busy spreading the bug to all and sundry.
Maybe this is something you could add to your armoury, OP.

I've taken DD in a few times with weird viral rashes, because they've looked quite alarming. She had parvovirus once! Which is entirely appropriate as she behaves as though raised by wolves......

Whenever someone trots out the "I can't believe..." line, I just say "Try harder, then..."

However, I am an epic cow, with a leaden tone that would stop your blood....

BeaWheesht Sat 09-Feb-13 18:56:16

Are you my sister?

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 18:56:48

Whenever someone trots out the "I can't believe..." line, I just say "Try harder, then...

I would love to use this!

Dum my mum was the same. Had some awful things happen to her in younger life. What's weird is she has sons and daughters. My brothers don't put nearly as much effort or time into visiting etc and they can do no wrong!

Her daughters though, are a different story! And her moods swing so drastically. If you disagree with her about anything (a news story for example) she'll just stop talking to you! And then the atmosphere is just horrendous.

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 18:57:35

Do you have a really big family Bea? I could be!

BeaWheesht Sat 09-Feb-13 19:00:42


My mums just the same. If I say I'm doing anything without the kids she says 'who will the kids be with?' As if I'm likely to leave them to fend for themselves (6&2)

If I went for a night out when either dc was at all unwell I probably would be told shed report me to social services.

She never went out when I was little even though I know she did

But despite all this she is lovely and caring and supportive in some ways, I don't live nearby though so it isn't as suffocating as it could be.

minouminou Sat 09-Feb-13 19:01:16

Don't dream about using it....bloody use it.

minouminou Sat 09-Feb-13 19:05:06

Oh yes..."who are the kids with?"

You can use my two faves:
A. They're chained to a radiator.
B. A known and trusted adult (delivered in a tone more appropriate to a siege negotiator).

Both show stoppers in their own way. B's more subtle, though, and is effective on hardcore neurotics.

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 19:08:49

Oh minou I think I need you in my life! grin

minouminou Sat 09-Feb-13 19:14:53

It's easier said than done, though, if you have a heavy table of family nonsense to overturn.
I've been argumentative since I could talk, and have always ploughed my own furrow. This stops people bugging me too much, as it's not worth the hassle. I rarely have had to use these lines.

However, your family won't drop you if you suddenly become more assertive....there may be a weird period in which everyone adjusts, but I reckon they need you more than you need them.

DumSpiroSpero Sat 09-Feb-13 19:34:28

How old is your mum Walter?

Mine is mid-seventies. Disastrous evacuation experience, abusive childminder & sudden death of her dad at the age of 12 have left her with horrendous separation anxiety basically. Of course by the time therapy for this kind of thing was commonplace it was too deeply ingrained to be effective.

I try hard to bear this in mind, and I love her dearly, but the constant second-hand anxiety & snarky comments when I do anything outside her comfort zone are really wearing, as is her tendency to blame DH for every decision I make that she doesn't approve of and label me a doormat for going along with it. 98% of the time DH has had no involvement in whatever I've done anyway, but I guys it's easier to blame him than accept yet more concrete proof that we are as different as chalk & cheese.

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 19:52:01

She's 70 Dum unfortunately her issues stem from abuse as a child by her grandfather.

And there were always question marks over the father of her older sister, it seems her grandfather also raped her mother so it wasn't an easy family to grow up in.

She has battled depression for years and in hindsight I'm sure she was very depressed at stages through my childhood.

She really does have a heart of gold and can be so fun to be around but the downs make it hard to enjoy the ups! My DH just despairs. He said today that everytime I do/have something that makes me happy and my family is not involved in some way, she finds a way to make me feel bad about it sad

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 19:52:54

minou they would definitely survive if I pulled back but the guilt would drive me mad!

DumSpiroSpero Sat 09-Feb-13 20:01:17

Your poor mum, that's horrible.

My mum had a breakdown after her mum died when I was 6 - anxiety, depression, phobias. It was not pleasant.

I suspect my DH feels the same as yours which is why his relationship with my parents has gone so far downhill over the years. His mum is hard work too although he'd never acknowledge it.

I know what you mean re the guilt. I texted my mum earlier as we parted on less than brilliant terms today. No reply & no email as yet and I'm already feeling guilty & fighting the urge to call her, but tbh I just don't have the energy or headspace for another verbal battle atm.

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 21:04:20

Same here. I want to phone even just to see if she's angry with me!

I can't be bothered right now though.

DumSpiroSpero Sat 09-Feb-13 22:05:53

I want to phone even just to see if she's angry with me!

Yup - that's the one! Ridiculous isn't it?

waltermittymissus Sat 09-Feb-13 22:07:46

It is, it really is.

I can see that and just can't stop myself!

pictish Sat 09-Feb-13 23:10:08

I think the fact that you've posted about it says that you're starting to find this routine old.
You are in the right. Your mums advice is rubbish and you've pretty much got it sussed.
Don't phone her. It's a merry bloody dance that you can do without.

waltermittymissus Sun 10-Feb-13 17:45:46

I haven't phoned her but I will see her tomorrow.

I hope she's in a good mood because her mood tends to effect everyone else's!

But then, if she is cheerful I'll feel guilty for even saying all of this!

DumSpiroSpero Sun 10-Feb-13 20:40:55

But then, if she is cheerful I'll feel guilty for even saying all of this!

DD has just Skyped my mum - the reason I didn't get a shirty email is that she has not got the hump with me after all confused blush.

Wonder if my Dad has had a word - he is a very mild-mannered chap that usually keeps out of things but does occasionally step up to the plate when we're really at loggerheads and invariably takes my side!

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