To wish my parents would stop trying to control my decisions at nearly 40?(54 Posts)
They're just controlling and make me feel like a rubbish parent. They feel the need to forcibly offer their opinion on every area of my life and are great at turning on the guilt when I don't comply with their wishes.
The latest, which my mum has just guilt tripped me over, is leaving my 16 year old overnight on Saturday whilst DH and I camp over at a pub for my birthday- just a few minutes away by car. My mother thinks this is awful of me as we are also going away with friends the week after - but it's my 40th so a one off. I ran it by my 16 yr old in advance and she wants to stay home alone, she'll have a friend over and they'll order Pizza. But my mum has gone on and on about how DD will be long and it's awful that my kids are 'missing out'. She makes me feel so damn selfish!!!!!
I would just stop telling her things. The less she knows, the less she can complain!
learn to be more dismissive.
You need to breeze "oh well, it's a good job you aren't in charge then" and change the subject. If she bangs on, just claim to be going somehwere and put your coat on so she has to leave
DP and I recently left our teens home for two nights while we had our first weekend away, which was to celebrate 30 years together.
We had established some ground rules, and my brother was on hand if they needed anything, but they were absolutely fine, and actualkly enjoyed that brief independence.
OP, ignore your parents.
Yanbu but stop telling them everything. I have a cousin/aunt like this and my cousin tells my aunt everything she plans on doing and there is always some fault in it from my aunt's perspective.
Stop telling your parents your plans and if they criticize them if they find out afterwards, change the subject and keep on changing it until they back off.
Your title kinda gives its own answer. They do it because you encourage them by listening to them. Do as PP have suggested - be breezy and point out that they aren't the boss anymore.
My mum is similarly free with her opinions on my life choices and considers it fine to say more or less anything as "it's only what other people think anyway". I have just stopped telling her a lot of things, unless the circumstances mean I absolutely have to. Makes me really sad as I miss the close relationship we used to have, but there is no other way to get on with life without feeling guilty/criticised most of the time. I recommend you try the same tactic!
Thanks everyone. I think withholding information might be the way to go, I can do no right it seems! They always make me feel like a crap parent but for 16 years I've worked everything around the kids and now they're growing up and have their own lives I don't think it's unreasonable to do my own thing more.
Tell them nothing. Talk about the weather. Turn the conversation round to them and their lives at every opportunity.
Why give them ammo? What benefit does it give you?
Yes, you definitely need to develop a breezy attitude! A little laugh and 'we're all very happy with the arrangements, but thanks for your input' should suffice. She will probably harrumph in an 'I know better than you' type way, by just ignore that.
Just ignore them OP. I bet your 16 year old DD will be over the moon to have the freedom of being home alone for the weekend.
Yanbu. I have similar problems as a lp. It makes me doubt myself all the time.
Oh i have one of those too!
I've just moved into a new house- can't not mention that!
I'm getting daily lectures on where i should put the furniture, which rooms my kids should have, why i should go out and buy twin beds for the spare room (what if you have two friends the same sex? You can't ask them to share!)...she's already decided what purpose the family room will be used for, and won't accept that's not happening.
Even being blunt "no, that's not what i'm doing" gets a lecture on why i can't do it and her version is better...
Oh God I'm glad it's not just me!!!! I have recently been lectured on 'allowing ' my 1e year old to be vegetarian (I should just keep feeding her meat regardless of her wishes aparently), the fact that I tutor a friend's daughter once a week ('it will affect the family') and my choice of paint for the living room (too pale)
That's 13 year old btw I don't have a 1 year old vegetarian!
Sounds like you need to learn the art of smile, nod, ignore!
If you are confident with your decision she can't make you feel bad or guilty, you do that to yourself.
I do the smile, nod, ignore unless she say directly "why are you doing x" then I reply because I am a 55 year old woman who is perfectly capable of making her own decisions thank you
They can't have enough in their life if they have so much time and energy to waste on yours!
I shared an office PA who I never used because everything was such a drama and she moaned constantly. I'm a head down get on with it type. My friend pointed out it was the only way of communicating she knew as she didn't have much going on.
What I'm saying is do they always have to fill any void in conversation and come out with this shit?
Hope your 40th is a blast£
Just answer "yep well, works for us."
My Mum's parents were very opinionated (my granny used to send notes to family members telling them her opinion). One of these was the work my parents were doing on their house was too expensive (despite not knowing the cost as dm learned to keep info close to her chest) and they'd never make a profit. I was 14 and remember dm having a lightbulb moment. Anyway, they did the work and the profit was £300k.
One thing dm always told herself though was that the advice wasn't out of malice it was out of worry. They were risk averse and df and dm were occasional risk takers. Granny is now in her 90s and she's mellowed a lot although I'm aware she doesn't approve that I work and thinks I'm lucky to have a dh who is willing to take on shared childcare but I smile and nod and ignore.
my mum is exactly the same and i am 33. i had planned a night out and my children were staying with their step gps for the night then the kids got a last minute party invite friday when the party was saturday (which she knew about as she checked the school bags) she made me feel bad for not letting them go to the party when we had plans that had been made for weeks, step GP's were doing me a favour so didnt want to complicate it for them and they had plans for with the kids too. in the end i told the kids and they decided to stick with my plans but it didnt half make me feel guilty!
at least you have your parents. i ahve my father but he;s no the same mentally and my mother died 6 years ago i miss her so much.
my parents used to be very controlling, and my eldest sibling has taken over that role. she has always bothered the others but not me recently she has been trying to control me, but i've just ignored her or stopped communications. im 37 even if i am ablondie really stupid to try and control me.
Katarzyna really sorry about your mum. I know I am lucky to have my parents around but sometimes I have to grit my teeth.
Well I got a text from my mum asking me to reconsider going on Saturday. DD has art exam Friday and Monday and my mum says she 'couldn't express her fears in front of DD but she always gets stressed with art and she may think she will be alright home alone all night but she always gets stressed with art deadlines'.
Which is odd as my mum didn't even know DD had an art exam when I mentioned we are staying overnight and she initially kicked up a fuss.
In the tone of breezy dismissal suggested I sent a text saying thanks but we had discussed it with DD beforehand, she is having a friend over and getting a takeaway etc, she is perfectly happy about it and we're only 15 minutes away if she needs us.
Got a text back saying that her misgivings hadn't changed and then another one saying 'don't know why u need 2 get away'.
Don't engage. Seriously. She is giving you her opinion and arguing with her because you are letting her. Don't tell her stuff until after the event. If she sends you a text like the one above, ignore. By engaging you are encouraging her to have opinions.
My DH always says that this sort of thing is the reason most people have 2 ears: in one, out the other. Their opinion in this instance is irrelevant. Ignore.
Don't reply to this text and disengage. Agree in future just don't tell her anything and be vague. Leave it a couple of days before replying to texts if she's a text bombarder.
It really is nothing to do with her. She's just interfering. Don't justify your decisions to her, you don't have to, just as she doesn't need to justify hers to you.
It sounds like your mum has some kind of anxiety disorder. Seriously. She seems to think worst case scenario and thrive off it like mould growing in a cup
Tell her to fuck off and leave you alone, seriously I don't know how you put up with being mithered like this
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