To think this is unkind? (Friend and baby related)(202 Posts)
I am friends with a group of three girls and we've known each other since college (A,B and C.) At the same age we all hit a stage we wanted to have kids (we didn't plan to try together, but we were all the same age and married.) We all found it quite difficult to conceive (all late thirties/40s)
Friend A tried for a while but was told she could not have children and so after a year of applying she adopted the loveliest little girl who is the same age as my dd. (She adopted her when she was 1yo.)
Friend B tried IVF for a short time but she felt it messed up her body and her hormones and decided she did not want to have children at all if It involved putting things into her body that would harm it. As part of this she also qualified to become a naturopath.
Friend C went ahead with IVF and eventually used a donor egg and had a baby, also a similar age to my dd and friend A's dd.
I eventually got pregnant naturally, had a dd and went on to have a ds too.
So there are three dds all a similar age, my ds who is a baby, and the four of us friends.
Now to the problem -
I feel that they have all ganged up on me about my ability as a parent, and imply that i do not deserve to have DCs.
I BF'd DD until she was 1 and am still BF-ing DS. I then swapped to formula for DD. All three of my friends have said I am not doing best by my DD by giving her aptamil instead of organic formula milk. Friend B, the naturopath, sets the tone of what is "best" and the others follow. And because I have not always followed her advice, I am looked down upon.
I also do not give my DC exclusively organic food, and again my three friends, the naturopath and those with the dds, eat all organic and have told me that I am lazy for not providing it for my DC.
When I weaned DD, I used a lot of Ella's kitchen pouches, which only led them to tell me that they thought I was being lazy (as they bought the organic veg, processed it themselves, potted it up etc.)
Friend A whose adopted daughter is almost exactly the same age as DD is extremely competitive about their progress and their behaviour and their clothes. She is constantly comparing our two dds and making jokes about how my DD had a head start (by not being adopted?!) and how she should be cleverer/more settled/more well behaved/more attached to parents than her DD but that her DD is running rings around my DD.
It's all made out to be a joke, but I don't really find it much of a joke. Friends B and C agree with her and they joke about how I find shortcuts in motherhood or let my Dc Watch too much TV or let them stay up too late and that I am an inappropriate person to have DC or somehow I am taking it for granted because it was so easy for me. They all refer to my DC as "poor DD AND DS," the implication that they have been born to someone who is all over the place. Again as a joke. That because I haven't been through the ringer with trying to have children that I am somehow inadequate and not part of the "club."
Friend C has had a full time, live-in nanny from the moment she had her DD, because she works long hours in a full time job. When I take my dc's over to friend C's house to play with her DD, I can tell that she has primed the nanny to find fault/give advice about childcare to me. From the moment I walk in the door, the nanny (an older woman) tuts that my DC are too cold, not wearing enough/ look unhappy / look tired/starving. DS is just starting to be weaned and I didn't realise until I got to her house the other day, but the nanny was under the impression (probably with orders given by friend C) that she had to teach me how to wean DS. I had already weaned DD so knew what to do, DS was already eating fine, and had never implied to any of them that I needed any help.
Friend C also keeps saying "are you STILL breastfeeding?" And rolls her eyes. Friend A also rolls her eyes. As if I am doing it deliberately to upset them. They say "stop putting your breasts in my face." Friend B pipes up "it's useless breastfeeding after a certain point, it becomes just like formula." Which I know ISN't true!
I don't feel competitive, I don't feel like I'm an inadequate mother. I don't show off (i have nothing to show off - DD is constantly tantrumming and they all roll their eyes as if it's my inadequate parenting,) I have never acted smug - i hate smugness in others and am very wary of it. I did nothing but support all my friends in their personal journeys, I never pushed my pregnancies in their faces, my kids are happy, healthy, loved.
But it's getting to the point where their personal feelings of insecurity - whatever they are - I certainly don't think any of them should feel that way - is bordering on being unkind to me. I think they have punished me enough for being able to conceive, have two DC, breastfeed, or whatever it is they have a problem with.
Trouble is if I mention it like this, it plays straight into their hands. It's almost like they want me to rub it in their faces that I have had two of my own DC, because they have somehow decided amongst themselves that I am smug about it. Our friendship only works if I put myself down and act like I never deserved to have my dc and what a joke the universe plays when it grants the joke person a chance to have their own DC.
It's not bordering on being unkind, it has gone way past unkind! I'd distance myself from these women tbh and find some new, nicer friends.
What is it you get out of these friendships OP? Sounds to me like it might be time to spend time with other people instead. These don't sound very nice
They sound like loons. Get some new friends!!!
Please don't stay friends with these people. Seriously. Why some women feel the need to do this to other women is beyond me. Life is too short for such toxicity.
Ugh, they sound horrible. I wouldn't want to mix with them at all. Leave them to get on with it together - they'll soon turn in on each other.
They are being horrible to you, real friends don't act like that. Distance yourself sharpish, they are putting you down to prop themselves up - vile.
When you can have kids and your friends can't it is often a breaking point in friendships.
Why have you persevered with people who clearly dislike you?
Yabu...... 1/ to still even be associating with them
And yabu.... to label them as 'friends'
Find new friends: normal people with normal expectations.
Goodness I'd cut your losses and find some new friends!
If you can't or won't do this, and I do understand they are old friends and you have shared history, then you could try being more assertive back. Or point out that you don't criticise their parenting choices and that it's rude of them to do that to you. And repeat each time you're given unwanted advice.
But seriously it sounds like you'd be better off leaving them to it.
They aren't your friends. You need to give them a wide berth. They also have quite weird values. There are lots of less extreme people out there. Be friends with them.
They sound bitter and jealous. I think you should distance yourself from them. Or if you feel that you would like to give them a chance to redeem themselves, tell them how hurtful they are being. They are being more than unkind. They are being bitchy and horrible to you.
They sound awful. Dump them fast. Your DC will pick up on their put downs as they get older.
Could it be resentment over your 'natural pregnancy'? I mean did you ever comment on it to them? If so maybe they're getting their own back? If not then everyone's right they are witches and you should stop seeing them
Find new friends. These women clearly aren't your mates, they sound bloody awful.
They're horrible and jealous that you conceived naturally.
As a side note there's no need to move to forumla at 1, cows milk/other milk is fine, follow on milk is a marketing ploy.
They sound horrible! People can be so self righteous when it comes to parenting.
I would distance myself from the group and concentrate on your family and other friends x
Remove yourself from this group. You do not need to apologise for not struggling the same way they did to have children. Real friends do not treat you as their whipping boy.
Bloody hell they sound awful. Please do yourself a favour and drop these friendships immediately.
They aren't your friends disengage and move on to better!! Don't say anything don't give them any satisfaction just stop contact with them and move on you and your dc don't need constant criticism!
Seriously, get out now. Soon they will be discussing you and your dc in front of their own dc, and it won't take long for your dc to start questioning themselves, or you, or them......
What horrible people they are
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