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Lack of support from mum

(53 Posts)
user1489138880 Fri 10-Mar-17 10:35:19

Hi, this is my first time posting.

I had my first child three months ago and my mum was over the moon as this is her first grandchild (although she does have four step grandchildren). My mum goes away a lot and my due date fell just a few weeks before she was due to go away for 2 and a half months. I kept hoping she would cancel her holiday and stay to help us with my DS but every time I brought it up about how she would be missing out on the early weeks she would just say how big he'll be when she gets back. Since she has been gone OH and I have been through hell with our DS due to his silent reflux, we've had meds for him but his symptoms are at the serve end and we've been sharing the night shift as our DS can't be put on his back, not even on us! Things have improved now he's 12 weeks but we're exhausted. My mum is due home next week and I'm feeling really mixed emotions about her return, on the one hand I'm physically and mentally exhausted and need her help on the other hand I don't want her around as she's not been here for me when I needed her. I'm tearing up all the time about the situation. Is it wrong to be angry at her for not being there for me?

scottishdiem Fri 10-Mar-17 10:39:27

Would you be as annoyed if there were no problems? I think it was unfortunate re the timing but you need to consider what help you can get from her now. If you want to be bitter about her holiday then that could sour things in future and you'd still not have her around.

Hope your baby is getting better.

NapQueen Fri 10-Mar-17 10:40:55

Cant your OHs parents help if you are that desperate?

HecateAntaia Fri 10-Mar-17 10:44:43

You are perfectly entitled to your feelings. imo families ought to be there for one another and support each other and help out.

But.

She is under no obligation to help you at all. None. There's no law in place that forces parents to provide assistance to their adult offspring.

It's very much a case of nice if they will, but if they won't, yer on your own, pal.

Do I think that's nice? No. Do I think that's how it would work in an ideal world? No. Is it the reality? Yes. Our families are under no obligation to help us and if they choose not to, we have to accept that.

Of course, the more petty among us would certainly remember this attitude when they needed some shopping doing when they're in their 90s.

But, it is what it is. She doesn't have to help you out and if she has chosen not to, you can't expect or demand it. You just have to find another way.

thanks

golfbuggy Fri 10-Mar-17 11:07:41

OP, why not look at this from the other point of view and be grateful that you have a mum who will be about to support you for some of the time?

This thread will soon fill up with people who tell you they have no useful family support at all

WhereYouLeftIt Fri 10-Mar-17 11:11:45

It's not wrong to be angry with her - but it's not right either. You say she goes away a lot - so that is the lifestyle she has. Should she change that to suit you? I know that sounds harsh, but I really don't mean it that way.

We get the idea pushed at us (through old films and books) of what a grandmother is - someone small and fluffy and grey-haired and wise whose home smells of fresh scones and furniture polish, who as the matriarch takes care of us all in their gentle unassuming ways. It's not real. It was never real. It's a fantasy. Real grandmothers have their own lives, probably still work and are as diverse as the rest of us. Their children having children does not change who they are.

You are teary because you are exhausted - I would be too after the 12 weeks you have had. Try not to hold it against her that she has not been here for you. She could have assumed that all would go well and you'd be having a lovely intimate time, just the three of you, without grandparents like her muscling in on you and changing the dynamic. If she offers to help on her return and it will be helpful (some people's idea of help is not helpful in the least), then take the help.Make it clear you need help with your exhaustion, i.e. you will be sleeping not hosting.

How has she been pre-baby? Was she someone you could depend upon, or not?

highinthesky Fri 10-Mar-17 11:17:36

You are entitled to your feelings but your mum is entitled to her life.

If you still feel resentful when she visits, let her know. Did you actually ask her to consider changing her plans? Or do you think she should have offered (unreasonable)?

Calvinlookingforhobbs Fri 10-Mar-17 11:18:27

OP, was your mum aware of how much you needed her? MN loves to tell you not to expect help etc but I think it was really unfortunate and a bit shit she wasn't there. But you are now a mother and need to think about what is best for your LO, and that means you have to bite your tongue and build bridges with your mum. But hugs to you in the meantime.

Ps take the baby for chiro. It was a gamechanger for our refluxy baby x

highinthesky Fri 10-Mar-17 11:19:17

Btw my own mother can't be kept away but is the exact opposite of soft and fluffy, she speaks her mind without thinking twice. But she is also utterly in love with her grandaughter.

Stickerrocks Fri 10-Mar-17 11:20:43

It would have cost her a fortune to cancel a 2 1/2 month holiday if it was a cruise etc. It wouldn't have been covered by her travel insurance as having a baby is an everyday event, not an emergency. It sounds as though she was around for the birth itself, so it's not as though she hasn't met the baby yet.

Please don't let it build into real resentment. I'm sorry that you are having a tough time, but I'm not sure what your mum would have been able to do to help in the circumstances. I'm writing as someone who had a difficult baby and a MiL temporarily living with us during chemo at the time with my own family 200 miles away.

MrsJayy Fri 10-Mar-17 11:25:08

I am sorry you feel let down by your mum and she isn't the support you hoped for that really hurts however your mum is under no obligation to help you out she has her own life but she will be back soon and will see her grandson and you don't be angry with her it is a waste of energy

Medeci Fri 10-Mar-17 11:29:20

Of course, the more petty among us would certainly remember this attitude when they needed some shopping doing when they're in their 90s.
Petty indeed.
My 92 yr old grandmother shops online so never needs shopping doing. By the time my mother's in her 90's we'll probably have intelligent fridges that organise everything.

Amaried Fri 10-Mar-17 11:30:33

Think your being blinded by sleep deprivation....
It's nice up have help but equally you could have had no issues and not needed her at all
Did you want her to cancel her holiday just in case..

Don't think this is worth damaging your relationship over

quarkinstockcubes Fri 10-Mar-17 11:31:00

* I kept hoping she would cancel her holiday and stay to help us with my DS *

It probably never occurred to her that you and your dh would need intensive help after the baby was born. If she is on MN she probably thought she was doing you a favour by being interested but backing off post birth.

She probably had the holiday booked before you knew you were pregnant so whilst you are understandably upset because of the circumstances YWBU to expect her to cancel it. As others have said do not let it build up, greet her with a "it is so good to see you, I would have loved to have you here the last X weeks, so glad you are back etc" and take it from there.

Bantanddec Fri 10-Mar-17 11:31:24

I understand you're upset but she is not obliged to help you at all, afterall it is your baby not hers, you have chosen to have a baby, she has done her child rearing. Does your partner have family you can call for help?

FATEdestiny Fri 10-Mar-17 11:38:16

I think it's more normal than many realise to desperately seek to assign 'blame' to someone (anyone) when learning to cope with parenting the first time around.

Parenting is hard

Parenting the first time around is harder still. At least with subsequent children you have an idea what to expect.

Parenting a 'challenging' newborn is even harder still.

Actually, your mum not being around in the early months might be a silver lining. There is much long term benefit in being thrown into the (parenting) deep end without a paddle. You have no option but to learn to cope. Quickly.

It wouldn't have been very different with your mum around. It will get easier. And you'll be able to enjoy being a mum while your Mum enjoys being a grandmother.

emsler Fri 10-Mar-17 12:29:46

I think there's two different issues here. YANBU to be upset that she went on holiday rather than meet her grandson as early as possible - although I don't think it's unreasonable that she did that, but I can understand why it might be hurtful. YABU to be upset that she wasn't around to help out, for all the reasons people have given above.

It's obviously been a tough time for you though OP and I really feel for you.

MrsJayy Fri 10-Mar-17 12:33:04

It is rough the first few months and we are never to old to want our mums I don't think even if if is irrational.

Rabbit12345 Fri 10-Mar-17 13:18:26

Op I have been where you are.

Up until your first child arrives you are your mums daughter. You have to realise though that you are now your daughters mum. Your mum is not there to parent your child. I know this is not what you are saying and you would like her to be there for you but anyone who has had children will tell you how hard the first weeks are. It is a given and what all new parents have to go through. Your mum already knows this and will take this as a given. But that is your and your OH job to go through it. While it is nice for someone to help out it also shouldn't be expected. She will love your child as a grandparent not a mother and unfortunately that means that she probably isn't as concerned about being around for the early weeks as you are.

You are going to be tired for the next few years with the responsibility you now have. It is probably helpful to use this example to determine what your expectations are and if they are fair.

Rumtopf Fri 10-Mar-17 13:18:41

OP have you seen those babacush cushions you strap baby to? Meant to be really relaxing for them as they are in a more upright position to stop the reflux.

As for your Mum, it's not ideal, it would have been nice to have her support but harbouring negative feelings about it isn't actually going to achieve anything. Talk to her about how it made you feel and then move on from it and welcome her support when she's there to give it.

TheOnlyLivingToyInNewYork Fri 10-Mar-17 13:28:45

I don't see what the granny has done wrong here. OP, its your baby, you have a partner, its for you two to do, not her. She's done her time with tiny babies, now its your turn.

What would you have expected her to do anyway?

bibbitybobbityyhat Fri 10-Mar-17 13:34:34

Yes, you are completely wrong to be angry with her!

I am sorry your baby has had problems and it has been hard for you and your partner, but in what way is that your mother's fault?

She has a life too. You are an adult and you are not on your own. You have had a baby. You shouldn't need a great deal of input from her.

Charitably, I am trying to think that your tiredness is making you think irrationally and I do hope things improve for you soon. But fgs don't take it out on your mother!

EatTheChocolateTeapot Fri 10-Mar-17 13:45:27

YANBU, it's intense to take care of a newborn and tough to recover from the birth at the same time. I am guessing she is not very good with babies.

If you are breastfeeding, stopping dairy can sometimes help with reflux.

TheOnlyLivingToyInNewYork Fri 10-Mar-17 13:54:20

If you are breastfeeding, stopping dairy can sometimes help with reflux

Highly unlikely, and dangerous advice to give out unasked for and unqualified.

CalJo Fri 10-Mar-17 14:49:16

Thanks all for your opinions, made me realise how handy it is to get other people's perspectives.

I am just exhausted and that is probably why I'm so teary.

I guess there are deeper issues with my mum that I'm harbouring too. For years she's always said she would retire when I have kids to be there full time for her grandchildren so the fact that she has done the complete opposite has saddened me but it is quite typical of my mum. All the women in our family rightly or wrongly revolve there lives around there children and In recent years their grandchildren. My mum likes to think of herself being this way too and although I know she loves us just as much she lives her own life and always has, which I'm grateful for in a way, all my cousins are very dependent and I count myself lucky to be more independent than them. I do get angry how my mum makes out that she's the same selfless mum as her sisters and cousins when the reality is very different. But do I want her to be the mum she imagines herself to be, in truth yeah I do which is probably why I get angry at her but I'm also happy that I am not so dependent on her that I can't cope without her. My partner and I have had a lot to cope with over the past few weeks but now the reflux is getting better we can start to look forward to nights where we can sleep at the same time and be proud about how well we worked together. Thanks all xx

Ps Calvinlookingforhobbs, we went to an osteopath and things did improve a little, is a chiropractor the same thing or is it worth exploring that too? (Ps we loves Calvin & Hobbs) xx

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