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Baby blues with unsupporting husband

(17 Posts)
2014MrsH Mon 15-Dec-14 14:49:07

Hello all, sorry for the long post in advance. I had my first baby DS 9 days ago after a traumatic 3 day induced labour which ended up with forceps and episiotomy after my baby's heartbeat was dropping as te cord was around his neck. I also had a longer stay in hospital as my heartbeat was too high after he was born.
My issue is my husbands parents. I never had a positive relationship with his mum - she's very controlling and a passive aggressive person. I've never argued with her but husband knows how insecure and belittled she makes me feel through constant put downs and trying to take over.
Since I've been home his parents have come by unannounced every night (they live 5 mins drive away). She wants to be called mum, wtf?! Ive had to bite my tongue all week in how she makes me feel. When my family came to visit she answered every question about my boy and acts as if he's hers, it's as though she knows more about my son than I do. She's trying to control him by picking him up when I just put him down after a feed to sleep, she even asked us to change his name last night because she doesn't like it. I'm having trouble bonding with my son as I feel like all I've done is provide them with a grandson so I can bugger off now. It's all about my baby in their family, no one has asked how I'm feeling...pretty crap and now very insecure.
I'm now at the point where I dread the door bell ringing, it fills me with fear and anxiety.
I've tried talking to my husband telling him how I feel and that I need space, but he doesn't see his mum as doing anything wrong and can't understand why I'm feeling so low and been crying non stop the last 2 days.
As a result we've had a big argument and he now wants a divorce. I'm so upset, I feel so lonely and claustrophobic and don't know what to do. My family live 2 hours away so it's not as though they can come and help me recover or support me

LookImStuckInTheChimney Mon 15-Dec-14 22:33:33

MrsH Congratulations on the birth of your DS.

The first few weeks are hard enough without having to put up with what you have flowers

Whilst it may seem like she is trying to control things, perhaps she genuinely doesn't know that it's upsetting you? My MIL is generally pretty great but both her and my DM were full of wise advice that I didn't want to hear. I did have to say very bluntly, well this is how I'm doing it with our son, and it doesn't really matter what you think (all said in a lovely sing song voice while I was next to DS. Classic PA behaviour blush).

Any chance you could talk to her? As for the visiting every day, that's out of line. Perhaps ask her if her MIL visited this many times after she had your DH. Maybe she will get the hint...

FWIW I had a similar birth to you (minus the induction) and it was incredibly traumatic. You need rest and as little stress as possible while you bond with DS. Could any of your family come to stay and perhaps act as a barrier if DH isn't prepared to?

Sorry, I know I'm being useless! Hope someone smarter comes along once this is bumped.

CrazyOldBagLady Mon 15-Dec-14 22:56:23

It sounds incredibly suffocating, so sorry you are not being given the space to bond with your baby.

I think you do need to muster a little assertiveness however, and lay down a couple of rules to ease you through the next few weeks. Could you consider texting your MIL or FIL and asking that they give you a few days alone. Just say that you need time to bond with your son and get into a routine and although you know how much they love him, you need a little space as you are finding the daily visits a bit exhausting right now, and weekly would suit you better. Ideally your husband would be doing this, but since he is refusing to acknowledge your (perfectly valid) feelings, then I think you might just have to lay down the boundaries yourself. If you can't face this at the moment, then perhaps you should enlist an advocate on your behalf, a good friend or close relative?

By the way, who does she want to call her Mum, you or your child? I think you should breezily laugh and say that you/him already have a Mum and hopefully that will be the end of that.

Itscurtainsforyou Mon 15-Dec-14 23:01:43

I'm so sorry. You've had a rough time with the birth and you're now going through this (totally unreasonable attitude) from your DH and in laws.

How much say do you have about them coming over? If your DH is out/back at work can you just not answer the door (& leave the key in just in case they have a spare)? If he is, how about taking your LO out for a walk on your own to give yourself some space away from them? Is that a possibility?

Can you call your community midwife team/health visitors? They're usually tuned in to things like domestic violence but as you're obviously very distressed about what is going on, they may be able to help/advise you.

Somehow you need to feel as if you're taking charge. I know that's so difficult at this point (I had a similar birth to you and remember how drained and helpless I felt). Perhaps you can make an appt to register your LO's name (DH doesn't need to be there) so there's no more pressure from mil to change his name?

In terms of your DH wanting a divorce, I think he's being ridiculous coming out with something like that. The first few months (year) of having a baby are so emotionally charged and sleep deprived that its almost impossible to make that kind of decision with a clear head ( except in the case of abuse etc). If he keeps to his word, make sure that's he's the one to leave and see if your family can come over to give you support.

You don't deserve this.

2014MrsH Tue 16-Dec-14 11:49:39

Thank you for your replies, you've all made me feel supported and reassured me I'm not going mad for how I'm feeling.

My DH has calmed down and apologised. After my midwife discharge appt today hes agreed to tell his parents that I've been told to rest and to avoid visitors for several days. Hopefully that will help but knowing his parents they'll be back around tomorrow night! They're extremely thick skinned and ignorant.

I'm determined to feel a bit more empowered after a few days alone with my DH and DS so will certainly tell them how I feel.

Oh she wants both my son and I to call her mum. Which I find insulting as my mum died when I was a child. And refuse to call anyone else mum, especially someone who treats me like she does.

I'm astonished at how going through a traumatic birth has made me feel, so drained with nasty flashbacks. But today I've been looking at my son and can't imagine life without him

Itscurtainsforyou Tue 16-Dec-14 12:46:21

I'm glad things are looking better and your DH has apologised. Honestly, I would lock the door and not answer it - you have no obligation to have visitors.

As for calling her mum - tell her you're not comfortable. And I hope your husband will tell her that baby calling her mum is completely unacceptable - she's grandma only and YOU are his mum. What a strange request.

Quitelikely Tue 16-Dec-14 13:04:55

I too had a nasty birth and it certainly can impact upon the bonding process with the baby well IMO anyway.

What I did in your situation is exactly what you have done with the midwife but I got my HV to one side who then explained to my dh why it was important that I got my rest and space.

If your MiL does not let up is it at all possible for you to go and stay with your parents for a week or so?

2014MrsH Tue 16-Dec-14 14:05:19

That's a good idea to talk to the HV and explain the situation to her. My husband is slowly coming around and beginning to understand how I feel I think.

Totally, he's my baby no ones else's and no one else is his mum. My mil is very old fashioned in her thinking and too domineering.

I'm going home to stay with my family after Xmas for 2 weeks. So grinning and bearing it for the next two weeks while hubby has extended leave from work

2014MrsH Fri 26-Dec-14 01:09:21

Hi ladies, I'm hoping I can get some more support on here today. So after sorting things out with my husband last week we seem to have turned full circle and back on no speaking terms which is sending me on another downer.

After a xmas spent with his parents - his parents kept passing my 2 week son round like a rag doll and wouldn't give him back to me all night - we had another blazing argument once we got home because I snapped when my son wouldn't stop crying at 10pm and I was being told it's my fault he was crying (told by inlaws).

I feel like utter shit and useless as a mother in that I couldn't protect my son from my husbands parents taking over even after repeatedly saying I don't like him being passed around. My husband tells me I'm neurotic and insecure and to deal with it. He just doesn't get how I feel in trying to overcome the past few weeks and just be with our son.

I really don't know what to do I feel so alone here and really think being apart from my husband and his family might just be what I need. But then think I'm being selfish. Argh!

MissCuttenclip Fri 26-Dec-14 01:57:07

You're not a useless mother, just a new one who is finding her feet.

You're not being neurotic either. It is perfectly normal to want to keep your baby close. I was really uncomfortable with anyone passing my baby DD around early on, and it was quite a few weeks before I built up the confidence to just take her back when I decided she'd had enough. She's actually quite clingy now at 8 months (teething/separation anxiety) but I'm loads happier just to sweep her up when I know she needs me.

My DP is supportive, but it's taken a lot of talking (with the occasional argument) for him to really understand where I was coming from.

Did you manage to speak to your HV after all? Mine have been really supportive and understanding, they always make me feel like I'm doing a good job.

I'm sorry that you're not getting the support you need at the moment - and applogies for the rambling post, just wanted you to know you weren't alone.

2014MrsH Fri 26-Dec-14 03:44:41

Thank you, you've said exactly what I needed to hear. It means a lot smile

It's good to know your DP finally understand you, I'll keep trying to explain to mine slowly when he's talking to me again! At the moment the space is quite nice.

My HV is due next week so I'm going to speak to her then. Hopefully it will help my husband to see things from my point of view too and she'll have some advice on dealing with feeling down x

ChaircatMiaow Fri 26-Dec-14 04:10:43

OP, I feel for you, I really do.

IMO I think you should go home to your family sooner rather than later and stay longer than you originally planned. You need support after what you've been through with the birth and so that you can find your feet with your beautiful new baby.

The last thing you need is having to put up with this crap from your DH and MIL. You are in a vulnerable position and not strong enough to be assertive as you need to be. Normally I wouldn't advocate this but your DH is a complete arse who has let you down when you need it most.

I also second the suggestion of talking to your HV.

2014MrsH Fri 26-Dec-14 11:49:19

Things aren't getting any better. My husband printed out a divorce petition this morning - says he's fed up with things and that I should just be glad his parents are around a lot etc.

I know he has a good point but all the more I feel like I can't breathe and this is now close to sending me over the edge.

I really don't know what to do

ChaircatMiaow Fri 26-Dec-14 23:59:10

Printed out a divorce petition? He's playing you like a violin. What kind of man does that to his vulnerable wife??

For the love of god, please OP, get out of there and go home to your family as soon as you can. You can sort this mess with your husband when you're feeling a bit stronger and you have the love and support of your family.

2014MrsH Sat 27-Dec-14 03:11:14

I wasn't sure if he was trying to call my bluff or not, he's mentioned divorce a few times before when we argue this time I'm half tempted to sign it just to see his reaction but then I would just be as silly as he is being. I'm going home on sunday so hopefully that will help settle things down. Only downer is my son will be missing his dads birthday on Monday.

I'm so angry he would stoop so low making me realise he's not all worth it at all if he can't support me when I need him most.

I also have a baby who has been up all night so very sleep deprived too

milkjetmum Sat 27-Dec-14 03:42:51


Your posts make me feel very sad - it is not normal the way your 'dh' is treating you. Please do go to your family and have some time to think things over. It would be normal to be a bit tired and snappy with each other due to sleep deprivation, but the divorce threats etc are nuts. How long have you been married/known each other?

You can have a better 2015, start taking steps to a happier future, even if that means some difficult decisions. Congratulations on your son, enjoy these precious early days.

Imi22sleeping Sat 27-Dec-14 17:47:28

Tell her to sod off. You need to get used to your baby I banned any visitors in the first week. Seriously tell her you will phone her when your ready for visitors again and don't let her in. She is his gran and no you can't change his name. It'll be hard but these grandparents that do this need to be sorted out early good.luck xx

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