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To wonder if anyone else can beat this example of ridiculous criticism of parenting

(68 Posts)
SEmyarse Fri 16-Dec-16 20:42:58

Dm, is always of the opinion that since I'm female I should be doing ALL childcare and ALL housework.

She is fully aware that I work 40-60 hours per week, and dh works 12. She doesn't object to this, in fact thinks its great that I take the pressure off him, BUT this should not mean that I neglect my duties. She's permanently shocked that this means I don't take dd2 to school, and on the occasions its come up in conversation has expressed dismal that dd2 has to get herslf up and walk herself. This isn't what happens, dh gets her up and out of the house, and to school. She gets told, but it doesn't appear to register.

Again, if its mentioned that I've not been home from work till 7 she'll express dismay that they'll have to live on toast and biscuits. No mother, dh cooks for them and always does a plate for me for when I get in. Why wouldn't he? He's here! And then she mutters that its such a shame a man not getting a hot meal provided at the end of a long day.

I was speaking to her yesterday, and somehow it was mentioned that I leave the house at the same time as dd1 in the mornings. The response? 'Oh, at least you can have some contact with your children'. Hey? ' Yes that means you can give dd1 a lift to school' Mother, you know she catches the bus, in the opposite direction to my work. 'Oh, but if you would put yourself out a bit, you could give her a lift.'

So as usual I take the bait and get annoyed when she won't listen to reason that either we would have to leave crazy early, or be late for work, and anyway there's NO NEED, since there's a free school bus going directly there. But no apparently I'm prioritising money (free bus) and work over my children. Grrrrrrrr

Smartleatherbag Fri 16-Dec-16 20:45:30

No. Even my mil isn't that bad. Sympathies. All sounds very unfair.

Mouthofmisery Fri 16-Dec-16 20:47:39

She sounds like she is from another century. I am a sahm (not out of choice but circumstances) but when I do get the opportunity to work on weekends I get comments from my own mother like "will DH be ok with all of them!" And I say " Well they are his and I cope so I should think so"!
No matter how far feminism has come we're still a long way off equality unfortunately

MissCherryCakeyBun Fri 16-Dec-16 20:47:40

Tell her in no uncertain terms this is the 21st century you are a working mother and a fantastic example to your daughters. Do not let her bitching get you down. My mother was very similar and I now see and speak to her on my terms. It wasn't easy but the pain and anger it's saved me were worth it. You both sound like you're doing brilliantly as parents. Xx

Boundaries Fri 16-Dec-16 20:48:09

I have one of these.

Stop engaging. It's the only way.

awayinamazda Fri 16-Dec-16 20:48:38

You can't please her, whatever you do/say you know! Try not to care what she thinks, and next time she implies the kids are suffering because u aren't there, when ur DH is with them, say that u think it's a shame she thinks so little of her own son, and that u have complete faith that he is able to look after his children.

crocodarl Fri 16-Dec-16 20:49:03

She's a stirrer! And an idiot. What does your DH say to her? Does she give him a hard time too? Is she like this with everyone or does she save her worst for you?

awayinamazda Fri 16-Dec-16 20:50:14

Oh sorry, thought she was ur MIL, not ur mum. But the same logic still applies!

Toadinthehole Fri 16-Dec-16 20:51:28

Does she also think your DH is congenitally incapable of performing "women's work"?

TremoloGreen Fri 16-Dec-16 20:53:16

Why do you engage with it? Is she genuinely mentally deficient? If not, it's unlikely she doesn't understand the aituation. She's just pretending not to to have a passive aggressive dig at you. Childish behaviour, don't indulge it.

Helloitsme87 Fri 16-Dec-16 20:54:52

My 'friend' went out of her way to judge me to another Friend as I was working on my daughters third birthday. She's September born and I am a teacher. I already stated on social media (a comment to friend) that I felt bad but we would be doing peppa pig world on the Friday instead.
Nope, apparently I am an awful mother who should be prioritising my children and should have taken the day off work

Pagwatch Fri 16-Dec-16 20:58:22


I can't beat that by my DM simply cannot shake the idea of the man going out and working hard and wife having to take care of him.
She gets this tone of voice when she asks about him asif he has been out working 20hour days propping up the whole of the UK single handedly. When he arrived home she jumps up to make him a drink and after 28 years of marriage she still can't get her head around him doing most of the cooking.
He takes the mickey out of her and gently laughs at her about it. He would never be rude to her. She's a nice woman and genuinely kind, it's just so ingrained in her she can't change her mindset.

Lorelei76 Fri 16-Dec-16 21:19:59

Tell her you're worried she can't retain information and would she like you to go to the doctor with her for memory tests etc.

youarenotkiddingme Fri 16-Dec-16 21:21:21

Could you very seriously look her in yhe eye and say "DH and I have been thinking about everything you said. We've decided I should give up work and do all childcare and school runs and all housework. Given our income that will be left we've decided to sell the house and have found a great 1 bed flat in <find a place really innocuous she'd hate>. We've decided you must be right it's better to live off a little PT wage and have me at home than give the kids a quality of opportunities as you mention it so much. "

Ya obviously NBU. She sounds tiresome.

zzzzz Fri 16-Dec-16 21:24:54

Can beat it grin. I had a 2 year old (still in nappies) a 4 year old and 6 month old twins. Dh had to take a job where he had to work away mon to fri in another country (because we were desperate). Dm phoned one Monday and asked how the weekend went. I said lovely and dh had done all the laundry and received the most awful and baffling tirade about how "unfair" it was to have expected him to do laundry at the weekend when he must be so tired shock angry confused

ShowMePotatoSalad Fri 16-Dec-16 21:24:58

My MIL thinks I should do everything too. Personally I think she's a bit of a martyr to the cause and does everything herself while FIL has lots of time to pursue his hobbies.

Any and all criticism about our home, our lifestyle, the way we raise our DS, is all leveled at me. I'm answerable for everything.

I just ignore it. She's got very fixed views about traditional roles. I like that me and DH are equals and share responsibilities equally.

ShowMePotatoSalad Fri 16-Dec-16 21:26:34

MIL also once told me I was "spoiling" DS by breastfeeding him, and how he needed to have a "feeding routine" because it wasn't good for him to just get milk whenever he wanted it. He was 5 months at the time.

NovemberInDailyFailLand Fri 16-Dec-16 21:33:39

Just begin speaking to her loudly and slowly, paising occasionally to explain any modern concepts she might be unaware of, like the fact WW1 has ended and what a television is smile

NovemberInDailyFailLand Fri 16-Dec-16 21:34:11


Cuttingthecheese Fri 16-Dec-16 21:40:28

My DM did the same when DH started working most weekends, 'about time you spent some time with your son' she said. I told her to fuck off.

GrumpySausage Fri 16-Dec-16 21:52:29

I have a friend who recently said to me

'Oh dh had to have ds1 all weekend this weekend whilst I worked. He wasn't happy about it'.

I actually replied 'what like you have to when he works the other 5 days a week' and she looked visibly shocked shock

I'm not usually like that but this kind of thing really grates on me.

I sometimes get my DM saying 'you forgot to pack so and so in DS's bag today'. Why does she assume I pack his bag? DH does the drop off at hers, I've been at work for 3 hours by that point! I reply with 'I'll let his other parent know too'

CherryChasingDotMuncher Fri 16-Dec-16 21:57:41

Ugh I feel your pain, I have ones of these for a mother. I was pretty much raised to believe women were second class citizens. As a child My stepdad and brothers, at Sunday dinner, got to pick from the dishes first - it went SD (because he's the man of the house), brothers, then me and Mum. Apparently growing men should get first dibs. I also heard "you can't because you're a girl" a lot.

She has very warped views about marriage and mothering and never fails to passive aggressively express them. I went on a night out with friends a month after my wedding and my mum was horrified that, not only was I venturing further than the garden path without my husband, that I was going out with <gasp> single friends shock. Apparently married couples should only be friends with other married couples.

We had an epic fall out one year when she made Xmas dinner for us and about 10 of their friends. I offered to help and she wanted me to actually go round offering to put potatoes on people's plates like a waitress, rather than just plonk it in the middle of the table for everyone to do themselves. I asked if her husband was going to help her out today or not, and she said nonof coursenot he works all year you know hmm yeah I work full time too. Because I wouldn't play waitress (insaid id take food through though) and dared suggest her husband gets off his arse for one day of the year, she shouted at me and burst into tears, I had ruined her day

She's really ramped up the sexism since I had my DD though. I've had to tick her off so many times for telling my DD off for not being ladylike. She is expected me to still be doing housework and getting dressed at 6am and making DH his breakfast when I was 5 days postpartum and could barely even walk. Thinks he's wonderful because he cares for DD on his own 1 day a week (but not me for watching her for 4 days on my own). My brother is a single dad who sees his son on weekends, she simply raved about what a fantastic father he was...because he took his son to a kids party. I had just been back from a party with DD myself, I'm heavily pregnant and she said "I hope you played with her and didn't just sit about, pregnancy isn't an illness you know". angry so man just takes child to party = amazing, woman take child to party = shit mum unless she's martyring herself all over the place and being all mumsy, despite having a lot of physical difficulties due to pregnancy.

I put it down to the reason why I'm such a staunch feminist, so every cloud and all that. Plus, the irony is, as much as Mum thinks she has the doting dutiful wife act nailed (and makes this out to other people too), it hasn't stopped her vile husband cheating on her for the whole of their 20-odd year married life, with women as young as 16. I feel very sorry for her really, but she'll insist I'm the one who has it all wrong because I share housework with DH (even though he works 20 hours a week more than me)

Littlepleasures Fri 16-Dec-16 22:03:33

Over 40 years ago, a distant relative of mine got pregnant at 16, married and had anotherchild at 17. In her mid 20s she went back into education and after a long slog, qualified as a teacher and worked full time from then. I was chatting to her MIL once, saying how much I admired her for her determination and hard work. Ah, replies MIL, you should see her house. Never moves the furniture when she's vacuuming..........

CherryChasingDotMuncher Fri 16-Dec-16 22:06:52

Oh and the worst thing a female could possibly be in my mum's eyes is an unmarried and/or teenage mother. We 'had words' the other day, as my grandad volunteers on a charity shop and one of his colleagues has a DGD who is 17 and pregnant with twin girls, and is somewhat on the bread line. I've kept loads of DD's baby stuff and said, if our baby is a boy, she can have everything of DD's (even if it's a girl I don't need all the stuff so will pass some on anyway). I kept pink cot bedding (which is always an expense to buy new!), little dresses, sleeping bags, blankets, Moses basket etc, stuff which is nice and hopefully will come in handy for this girl. Word has been passed on and the girl is happy to take anything! Mum asked me the other day what I'd do with the pink stuff I had if we have a boy, as her friends DD is expecting a girl (and lives 300 miles away) and I explained I've already earmarked it. She was mortified, and I quote - "Well I think it's ridiculous that you'd give your beautiful expensive things to some knocked up teenage chav over Carol's lovely daughter" angryangryangry. I told her she wasn't a very nice person sometimes. Went down well as you can imagine 🙄

Apparently she already told her mate I'd be more than happy to post the girl stuff down (I'm guessing at my expense) and is now mortified to have to go back and tell her I can't (she's telling her I binned it all apparently).

YouOKHun Fri 16-Dec-16 22:08:00

Are you sure she's not envious of you? The green-eyed monster's best tactic is to be most critical of the thing most envied. Your independence generally, your financial independence, the fair sharing of tasks in your relationship - some or all of the things she would have liked?

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