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Grandson's Football - Whole Family Affair

(356 Posts)
Chellors123 Sun 12-Apr-15 12:21:27

In-laws have a history of 'overbearing' behaviour and crossing boundaries into parenting with my DS, they are both retired and are keen to be involved with everything we do which drives me nuts.

DS has started playing football and has a match every week. I enjoy going with DH and other DS, we meet up with the other mums/dad etc and its become quite a social thing. So now PIL's also want to come every week and text/ring us constantly to find out what time the game is and when they do come MIL spends most of match chatting to the other mums (which winds me up as I see this as another example of muscling in) meanwhile FIL is shouting instructions to the team! PIL's spent 20 years watching their DS play football everyweek and I just feel this is now my turn with my DS. I have no problem with them watching DS just not every week,

DH thinks IABU and says 'just let them get on with it' and doesnt see my problem, anyway we have had a massive row as we tried the dodge the calls/text route hoping they would get the message but we just got more calls/text/asked more. DH really shouted at me saying I dont understand it puts him in an uncomfortable position as he doesnt want to avoid calls and now we are not speaking. I do feel bad, am I being unreasonable to feel strongly about this and should I just back down for DH's sake?

crymeariverwoo Sun 12-Apr-15 12:25:46

I think YABU. When I was growing up my mum's parents lives a 5 hour drive away. I would have given anything for them to be able to watch me play my sport every week. Grandparents aren't there forever, I have one left now. And it makes me sad and makes me want to turn back time and spend more time with them. It sounds as though you are jealous that your mil is socialising with your ds' friend's mums. I wouldn't worry, you can all socialise. I think for the sake of your DS you should let them carry on watching him.

DrHarleenFrancesQuinzel Sun 12-Apr-15 12:27:20

I do understand as I think if we lived closer then my MIL would be the same.

However, you will get a lot of replies saying that YABU as a lot of inlaws dont want to have anything to do with the children of MNers so you should count yourself lucky.

I can also see that argument too. I think you might be being a bit unreasonable, but can understand why you do feel this way.

PeachyPants Sun 12-Apr-15 12:27:39

I don't think YABU, they are encroaching to an unreasonable extent into your family time, they shouldn't assume they can come each week. Do they know that you don't want them to come every week though, it'll be an awkward conversation but one which I think you'll need to have rather than just trying to dodge their calls.

CMOTDibbler Sun 12-Apr-15 12:28:45

I think YABU - I'd love for either of ds's grandparents to take any interest in him, let alone turn out for football every week. And your MIL can look after your other ds leaving you to socialise unimpeded, which must be a win

FenellaFellorick Sun 12-Apr-15 12:29:11

I think that it's the whole of the history and the whole of the behaviour that affects how you see this. I understand that when someone is difficult to deal with, in the end even them making a cup of tea makes your blood boil and people outside the situation go wtf, it's a cup of tea you freak grin but it's not the tea, it's the ten years of drip drip drip. I do understand.

That said, I think you have to learn to look at each thing independently. If they watch him playing football how are you being harmed? How is your son being harmed?

Does it, for example, take anything away from how much you see of him playing football if they see it too? Do you only get to see half the game? grin no, you all get to see all of it. Does it harm or benefit him to hav3e multiple people cheering him on? Does it harm you, or him, or them, for them to talk to other parents? Are they saying horrible things about you or damaging your relationships with other parents? Do they prevent you from chatting?

When you don't like someone, then you are hyper critical of everything they say or do and everything about them irritates you. But you need to step back and analyse individual situations rather than sighing and going here we go again.

That way, you can more easily put boundaries where boundaries need to be.

SugarOnTop Sun 12-Apr-15 12:30:37

why can't you ring them yourself and tell them how you feel? see if you can compromise on them coming every other week or something......and remind your husband he is married to YOU not his parents and your feelings should matter to him.

JeanSeberg Sun 12-Apr-15 12:31:18

They're your husbands' parents and he's happy to have them their so why do your wishes trump his?

Sparklingbrook Sun 12-Apr-15 12:31:31

I have been involved in junior footy for years, I think it will be nine this year, taking DSs to matches. I can totally see why that would annoy you OP.
Season is coming to an end in the next few weeks though, so not much longer to put up with it.

Maybe start some rules next season?

That said, the novelty did wear off for me, and I try to avoid going at all costs these days. blush

letscookbreakfast Sun 12-Apr-15 12:32:09

It doesn't harm your relationship with your son if they watch him play football with you and DH. Your DH is right, you are putting him in an uncomfortable position by dodging their calls and texts.

Christinayangstwistedsister Sun 12-Apr-15 12:32:46

Does Ds want them to come?

maroonedwithfour Sun 12-Apr-15 12:33:20


letscookbreakfast Sun 12-Apr-15 12:34:33

remind your husband he is married to YOU not his parents and your feelings should matter to him.

I'm sorry, does being married mean that the DH should no longer consider his parents?

Trickydecision Sun 12-Apr-15 12:34:35

God forbid that grandparents take an interest in their DGCs. YABU.

PeachyPants Sun 12-Apr-15 12:35:09

But JeanSeberg why should her DH's wishes to have them there (or perhaps just his anything for a quiet life lack of objection) trump OP's wishes to have this activity as family time just for her little family? This is a situation where perhaps some compromise would be best and OP has already said she's not trying to stop them coming but just doesn't want them coming every week.

DeeCayed Sun 12-Apr-15 12:36:10


you don't have to put your name down for attendance and usually people who live nearby turn up/walk their dog so they can go if they want.

They are proud of their grandson and want to be there to support him, what's wrong with that?
So what, they talk to other parents and I suspect other grandparents <shrugs> nothing I haven't seen in my time of football/rugby over the years with ds1. I've also seen most parents shouting instructions to their dc. The coach can't see everything so the parents are shouting as to where their dc should be to help them.

At least they are willing to stand in pissing down rain/snow/mud/baking hot sun to support him.

JeanSeberg Sun 12-Apr-15 12:37:28

Let's hope the OP doesn't want to watch her grandkids in the future when she's a MIL herself eh?

RJnomore Sun 12-Apr-15 12:37:29

Having had a child who played football I would view this as an absolute bonus and be getting the gps to take him every second fans while I did something warm constructive!

Sparklingbrook Sun 12-Apr-15 12:38:11

In my experience it was the more the merrier, and often all went to the pub afterwards. Some Saturdays my Mum and Dad would take one of the DSs on their own to a match, sometimes we all went.

DH's parents live 3 hours away and never got to see any matches at all.

shirleybassy Sun 12-Apr-15 12:38:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

UniS Sun 12-Apr-15 12:38:38

It can a positive thing if you let it be a positive thing. FiL may need reining in if his calls are distracting the kids.
DS has one grandparent interested in each of his 2 main sports. They don't live close enough to come and watch regular , but DS likes it when they can come.
Grampy has taken him to cricket with out me which was helpful the week it happened, granny will happily be his pit crew at a race so I can move round the circuit and see how he's tackling a tight corner. And yes, granny likes chatting to the other pit crew parents and grandparents.

Christinayangstwistedsister Sun 12-Apr-15 12:38:52

Can you talk to them about it? Tell them it's your family time but you would love for them to come once a month and then go for lunch together afterwards

Bowlersarm Sun 12-Apr-15 12:39:15


Your Dh wants them there. Your DS must be thrilled his grandparents are watching him. Your PIL want to be there.

Why should your wishes take priority over those of 4 other people?

hoobypickypicky Sun 12-Apr-15 12:39:30

YABU. The in laws are watching your boy play sport, not attending his parents' evening.

You might have got me seeing your side of things until you complained about your mother in law talking to people on the touchline! Posting that just makes you look petty. People talk to other people, it's human nature! What's she supposed to do? Be mute? Would you be saying that if your mother came along and chatted to people nearby?

Chill. There will come a time when you and/or DH have other commitments or it's just sodding freezing and you're unable or less willing to go. You'll no doubt be grateful for the grandparents' involvement then!

Scholes34 Sun 12-Apr-15 12:39:58

If your PILs can get themselves to matches and aren't relying on you and are well-behaved and respectful of the other team's players and the match officials, I don't see the problem. I've met lots of lovely grandparents over the years watching my DSs play football. Some are there every match, others just occasionally. If they're buying cups of tea/coffee and contributing to the club's coffers, that's a bonus too.

If I find my self in the position of having grandchildren playing sport, I'll make a point of trying to watch them whenever I can.

As for them chatting to other parents, I really don't think they'll be poaching any potential friends from you.

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