AIBU to want my mum to let go / butt out / stop telling me what to do??(12 Posts)
Please someone tell me I'm not being unreasonable .....
And if someone can point me in the direction of tried and tested way to deal with it that would also be amazing!
I'm her PFB , and I'm 30. I'm married. I'm a mother. She has 2 other children, and she isn't like this with eight of them.
We have always been close, but now she just thinks she can dictate how I should do things, even trying to tell me what I do and don't want.
- told me I don't want another baby
- told me I wanted the wedding dress she wanted me to have (I still regret it)
- told me I didn't want a certain sex of baby
- tries to always get me to her way of thinking
- always gives me her opinion on EVERYTHING
- tries to talk me out of doing things
Today she even told me off.
Granted, I've probably build a rod for my own neck by involving her in my life , sometimes seeking approval, asking her advice.
But now it's just too much, and I don't know how much more I can take.
We live close, and aren't in a position to move away - but I'm more and more wanting to - and I'm not just talking another town, it's getting to the stage where I even consider another country, preferably with a huge time difference!
Help! I can't talk to her about it as it will just end up in an argument. Maybe a moon light flit is the best option....
You answered your own question OP. You invite opinions and seek approval and she gives it in spades!
DH's mum is very much like this with his siblings but not with us because we only tell her what we want her to know and don't ask for advice. I know she hated it for the first few years of our marriage but we've kept firm boundaries and it's fine.
You just need to reset the boundaries and that begins with telling her less!
Argue with her a lot. And just do minor, petty stuff she doesn't like, by way of practice. Honestly, it helps counteract the little voice in your head that's constantly saying 'But mum isn't going to like it if...'
To my mother's horror, over the past few years I've got a dog, changed jobs, breastfed too long, named one of the children something she didn't like, and let DD have her ears pierced, amongst other sins.
Been there, done that. I even got to the point where I wouldn't throw out a set of old saucepans because she wouldn't like it!!!
In our case she lived a long way away and so when she came to stay she dominated everything. She even reorganised my cupboards so she could reach everything!
Ultimately DH stepped in and told her that she had to stop doing it or she wouldn't be invited to stay. My first little act of rebellion was to refuse to invite other relatives back to the house after DC3's christening party. I got bolder, and she doesn't do it now, because she knows it won't get her anywhere.
I felt really bad, as the eldest child and parent pleaser, but I was 42!!!
I am such a parent pleaser! My mother gets away with acting like a toddler sometimes. She stamps her feet and I am/have always been guilty of kowtowing. I have no advice OP, sorry. I love my mother dearly and make excuses for her bad behaviour a lot.
Don't ask for her opinion!
IF she tries to force her opinion just remind her - as my dd does to me, now and again, that you are grateful for her advice, but you are an adult now.
Rinse and repeat
It's harder with closer proximity (ask me how I know!) but my top tip is to stop telling her stuff, stop asking her opinion, stop involving her so much.
We manage this by (this sounds mad I know) daily 5 min phone call with absolutely no info from us just bland chit chat/no plans discussed or put forward for possible objecting to/being REALLY busy/making sure she's invited on days out or family lunches. Careful management!
You need to stop being a parent pleaser. I ahve found it hard to stand up to my Mum in the past, I think there is a guilt feeling as you feel that you should respect your parent from having that instilled in childhood. It gets to the point that you realise you are an adult and your opinions are as valid as your Mums. You are equal in that sense.
Don't invite opinion any more. FWIW I also ended up with a wedding dress that I wouldn't have chosen if my Mum had not been with me. I also slightly regret that.
It was only after having my daughter that I realised just how much I had all my life enabled a similar type of relationship with my own mother. She could always swoop in to save the day, save me from my foolish decisions. Thankfully we live on opposite sides of the planet but things did come to a head during a visit when my daughter was still a baby. After some heated discussion revolving around what she knew was best for me, I pointed out I would have to do what was best for my family, because that's what we were now. That realisation and actually saying it out loud seemed to cut a tie for me and I found thereafter I was able to maintain a mental distance. I feel for you OP. Trying to explain this to them and actually get them to hear it is almost impossible. Finding your own way to get a bit of mental distance is probably your best option. That and making a concerted effort to not discuss things with her, don't give her the 'in' to get embroiled in the details of your life.
Thank you ladies - you all speak great sense!
It's so hard - I really want her to stop dictating my life - which is now my families life! I need to get back to being my own mind.
It has honestly got a lot worse since being home with baby. I suppose she was there for me to ring if I was having a bad day and hubby was at work.
a friend told me years ago to 'play hard to get' with my mum
she was just like yours, by the sound of it
I didn't do it, and let her carry on. In the end I just snapped and didn't talk to her for two years
I wouldn't recommend this, and wish I'd taken my friend's advice. You know, just keep it light/friendly and don't tell her anything. Trust me, it's easier
We had to do this a bit with the PIL. If I didn't want their input then I shouldn't tell them the info. They are lovely but I didn't want to get cross with them so we started keeping some things to ourselves. Works really well.
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