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Ds's comment just really genuinely upset me

(47 Posts)
CurlyhairedAssassin Sat 06-Oct-12 21:09:30

He is 8. I feel really upset. I was joking around with him and ds2 while watching x factor and the mum who was surprised when her 2 children turned up at her hotel. I said "aah, shall I go away for a few weeks to a hotel? Would you miss me?"

Ds1 immediately said "no". Dh then joked "you can't do that cos you can't sing." at which ds1 replied "yes, because u can't sing. Dad can't go because we'd miss him too much.". So I laughed and said "so you'd miss dad but not me?" and he said "yes, because he's fun and you're not." Still joking along I said "ok, next time you need me to look after you when you're ill I'll let dad do it, because he'd be more fun." I thought DS1 would then be a bit sheepish and realise he'd said something silly but he just said "no, you have to do that because otherwise you'd do nothing."

I actually couldn't speak and feel genuinely upset by his comments for the first time ever. Does he really think I bring nothing to his life? Dh is a good dad but he works very long hours and so when he sees them he just plays with them so I think they do see him as the fun novel one and me as the boring one because I'm always just there for them doing everything for them.

I know he's only 8 but it's really hurt my feelings. How can I rationalise this? I daren't tell dh how I feel as he would make ds1 apologise and I think it would make him feel bad. Not sure at 8 that he even realises what he's saying.

I just feel so unappreciated as a mum and all I do for them. sad

colditz Sat 06-Oct-12 21:11:10

You're just furniture to him..... but who really appreciates there bed as opposed to their ipad? And which would you really miss the most if was taken away?

Your dh is the ipad, but you, my dear, are the bed.

Of course they think you do nothing. Of course they think you're dull. Shows what a good job you're doing but bows the time to start making them appreciate you. My parents were fantastic, I was the centre of their world but they let me believe that was completely normal and bog standard. I was quite old when I realised life wasn't that good for everyone, and I look back and cringe at ho selfish I was.

discrete Sat 06-Oct-12 21:13:20

hmm, I think you should tell dh how you are feeling.

If one of my dc said something like that, I know dh would jump down his throat and make him apologise and thank me for all the things that I do do for them - after listing them in excruciating detail for at least half an hour (which would be the punishment for the dc I suspect!)

Sometimes they need to be reminded. Empathy doesn't necessarily come by itself to young children.

SuzySheepSmellsNice Sat 06-Oct-12 21:15:39

My DNephew told me I have fat boobs yesterday as opposed to the empty spaniel's ears my DSister sports He is 6. They know when they are being mean. I think he should be reprimanded for being rude, and saying that you bring nothing to his life is rude. If you don't address it now, it could cause you more both more grief down the line as you won't really forgive him until you know that he didn't really mean it.

legoballoon Sat 06-Oct-12 21:15:47

colditz nicely put.

Curlyhairedassassin - your DS is 8, and has yet to learn tact, will take you for granted, and has no idea of the amount of effort you put into keeping his life as comfortable as it is. Until you become a parent, you never really appreciate the sheer graft involved in raising the young. Don't take offence. I'm sure you'd be the one he'd want in a crisis (goodness forbid). Sometimes I think they like to see how far they can push the emotional limits at this age - it's the 8 year old equivalent of toddler food trantrums. Stay confident and keep being the fabulous mum you are.

Whistlingwaves Sat 06-Oct-12 21:15:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Cosmo89 Sat 06-Oct-12 21:16:32

It is hurtful and u have every right to be upset, even tho he is 8.

But- on the flip side- I remember being that age and doing something very similar to my mum who Iove very much. I did it to try to be clever and appear grown up. I will never forget the look on her face, realised how much I had hurt her, but felt I had gone too far to apologise iyswim- after all the hurt wasn't publicly acknowledged, so there was no opportunity for me to say sorry in that classic kids way.
Your post struck a chord with me because I do remember doing what your son did. Of Course you bring more to his life, you ARE his life. He was just being an idiot and trying to flex his independent muscles. Bey he regrets it.

PinkleWickers Sat 06-Oct-12 21:16:32

Does he pick up the "you dont do anything" from someone else?
Im really not the type to immediately assume the man is the problem, but my immediate thought was that ds was possibly repeating patterns he has seen/heard?

Cosmo89 Sat 06-Oct-12 21:16:42

Bet that is

BurlingtonBertieFromBow Sat 06-Oct-12 21:16:51

Agree that children are not naturally empathetic and at that age, if you have a good life and are looked after your parents you just accept it as the norm. He's a bit young to see you as a rounded person yet, and as far as he's concerned you're a mum and you do mum stuff.

I do think that at the time it should have been brought to his attention (by you or DH) that he is fantastically lucky to have a caring mother who does so much for him. He isn't too young to have that pointed out to him, and to be helped to understand that it is rude to say something like that to his mother.

dontcallmehon Sat 06-Oct-12 21:17:20

Colditz that is beautiful and so true.

SuzySheepSmellsNice Sat 06-Oct-12 21:20:00

I agree with Burlington

WhizziesMum Sat 06-Oct-12 21:20:19

colditz- fantastic post and so, so true

GlesgaRocket Sat 06-Oct-12 21:21:18

Love colditz's reasoning, and totally agree.

slambang Sat 06-Oct-12 21:36:54

My boys used to say things like this. I remember being gutted when ds2 listed his favourites in the family from his dad (top), brother 2nd (that he constantly argued with confused), the cat (third) then me last.

I came after the bloody cat ffs.

I never said anything about it to ds because I knew deep down that the reason I came last in the list was because I was counted without needing a mention. I was/am automatically part of his comfort, security - his bed smile. Dh is fun - *just fun. Most of the time ds doesnt even notice if dh is in the house.

Now ds is 13 he tells me he loves me and hugs me lots shock. This is unheard of!! Don't worry at all about what your ds said. The idea that he needs to consider parental feelings is a few years off yet, but it will come and he'll look back and know you were the one who was always there.

Cosmo89 Sat 06-Oct-12 21:41:21

I think what I was trying to say is that I disagree with the idea that children aren't empathetic or naturally take things for granted
I think it's possible he knows what he said hurt, regrets it, but doesn't let on.
If u seriously think he doesn't care that his comments were hurtful I think you should raise it with him. What he says is hurtful, he blatantly doesn't really think it so perhaps a lesson on empathy if u do honestly feel its lacking?

pictish Sat 06-Oct-12 21:46:18

Colditz that is a top analogy, and very much tells the truth.

OP - it IS true - you are the bed.

However, if this has made you think, then there's nothing wrong with talking it over with your husband and telling him how you feel. It is a case of out of the mouths of babes, but at the same time your ds does sound quite blunt and disrespectful if his tone was how I read it.
Maybe they need to be respecting you more?

CurlyhairedAssassin Sat 06-Oct-12 21:50:53

Thank you, all. Colditz, that is an amazing post! So true but not an analogy i would have thought of. I will hold that thought when I feel unappreciated.

DH knows how much I do. I specifically took a lower paid term-time only part time job which enables me to do school pick ups and drop offs. My salary pays for all their after school activities and i organise and pay for all our family holidays plus their birthday parties and Xmas presents. I buy all their books etc All the "fun" stuff in their life. Just feel gutted they can't see this and feel tempted to tell them that it's not bloody father Xmas who gives them such pleasure on Xmas day - its me! Dh has no input, he just leaves it all to me. I was happy to do this - he knows I'll do a better job at this type of organisational stuff than him. He is happy to help with present wrapping or helping at birthday parties, he just doesn't seem to have the time or organisational skills to do all the thinking and planning that nice family treats entail. He goes along with what I plan and waits for him to tell him what he has to do to help. And he does help. He is a very good, hard working dad.

I do agree that dh perhaps should have said something to ds at the time but he just laughed it off which made me feel that it was just a trivial silly comment and I should see it as such. But I just can't.

I also remember how much I took my mum for granted and feel ashamed now. Maybe he gets it from me! Ds2. Seems to have a bit more empathy despite being younger.

Off to settle them both in bed for the night. I think I might just ask ds2 now if he really meant what he said. Fingers crossed he will give a good answer!

moreyear Sat 06-Oct-12 21:58:20

That was a lovely, lovely post Colditz. Almost made me well up. OP I hope you got a big cuddle and kiss.

Brilliant response Colditz. Personally, I like being a bed. I'd go with that OP.

WeAreSix Sat 06-Oct-12 22:07:40

Sometimes I realise that I'm drowning in all of the mundane, routine parts of life. You know, the things that are essential to our family life - washing, cleaning, school run, cooking, organising, family clubs... And that doesn't leave much time for play.

I think you've hit the nail on the head when you said about daddy playing with them. I have to stop myself saying 'I just need to...' or 'after I've...' when my DCs want to play and leave the chores for a while and play without other distractions. Maybe you need to do the same?

Helpyourself Sat 06-Oct-12 22:12:23

Great post Colditz. I wondered when princess Diana died whether some of the outpouring about her was because she was the disney mum. She was the one pictured taking her dss to the cinema, Thorpe park, whereas most mums are beds not iPads.

JustFabulous Sat 06-Oct-12 22:14:20

Thank you CA for starting this thread (though sorry you were upset) and also to Colditz for taking the time to post. I am really struggling at the moment with feeling like everyone's skivvy and no one caring how I feel but if I am the kids bed rather than their mobile/computer/lego (as per my kids) then that is fine.

CurlyhairedAssassin Sat 06-Oct-12 22:19:53

Yes it did actually made me well up too!

Well, I spoke to ds1. I said "so...,do you really think I do nothing for you except look after you when you're ill?" and he replied "yes." so I said "all the birthday parties and holiday organising and all your activities I take you to etx etc - that's nothing, is it?". He laughed and said "no. I didn't mean that anyway, I meant that the only things you do for me is care for me so if you didnt do that, you'd do nothing." which put my mind at rest and I should have just left it there but I couldn't help but say "no, but you were just talking about what I did for you apart from caring for you when you're ill. So it was a bit hurtful to think that you thought that apart from that I don't do much of use for you."

And he went quiet and looked a bit uncomfortable. Then said "anyway, why are we having this conversation - its a waste of time."

So confused. Was it a misunderstanding? Was he trying to back track? I don't know. I suppose I'll have to leave it there as far as ds goes. But I will have a word with dh about backing me up in future and emphasising to the ds's just how much I do unnoticed by them. I know he will support me on this, he is a good'un. smile

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