becoming a parent makes dealing with in-laws so much harder...(22 Posts)
And in turn already feeling a strain on my marriage. Not posting in aibu as really dont want grilled here, but just feeling really down.
Just had a baby whos not even 2 weeks old and already been bombarded with visitors from dhs side (mine live overseas) everyday since birth (all staying for at least 4 hours a time), and pil getting annoyed as theyve not been aloud to see him for 1 day (which they came round anyway).
Tried to speak to dh about it and the strain i feel its putting on me/us but he has a total difference of oppinion - even encouraging them to take baby everyday for an hour so i 'have a break' even though hes a newborn!
I just feel like because im surrounded by dh family i will never get a say!
Please say this gets better?
Well, it does get better, but you have to put your foot down and tell them what's OK and what's not. If they can't stick to it, you are perfectly fine to tell them no more visits if they can't follow your wishes. Plus you do realise, your problem is not so much that the in-laws have no boundaries (although it is a problem) but that your DH isn't backing you up. You and the baby should be his priority here, not your in-laws.
Have an honest conversation with DH: 'I'm at risk of post-natal depression unless I have time to rest, recuperate and bond with my baby. Please ask your family to back off'. Even better, ask your health visitor to back you up. DH can then deal with his family.
Failing that, book into a secret hotel and charge room service to DH
Yeah i think the issue is the fact that dh is so adament that his family have a right to see baby whenever and how long they want and im being unreasonable. Had a chat with him and told him how i feel and he just has complete different opinion. Its so strange as we agreed with everything before baby was born!
My ILs were like that with every baby. I waited for DH to intervene but he never did. You need to put your foot down now. If necessary take the baby and shut yourself in your bedroom .I wish I had.
I would not allow visitors for the first 4 to 6 weeks; this is the time for you and your husband to bond with the baby. It looks like he and his family are very excited about the new born. Is this the first baby in the family?
I am sure this will settle down; surely they have busy lives; you are probably still very tired and trying to recover too and find it harder to have to deal with all the visitors.
Definitely stand up for yourself. My PILs (and OH) coerced me to move in with the PILs in my last week of pregnancy and the first two weeks after the birth. After that my parents came to visit, so we moved back home for two weeks. After that, they all planned to move us back to the PILs again so that they could give me "support" with the baby, but I felt so strongly that I wanted to bond with the baby alone (and frankly so sick of the PILs cooing over her all day) that I put my foot down. Told them on moving day that I didn't want to move. Best thing I ever did. Spent the next 7 idyllic months in complete comfort in my own home with the brand new baby,
mine all mine
Time alone with your newborn is time you'll treasure forever. Don't let it go.
Ugh, that sounds awful. Is it your first baby? I have a 7 week old and I've found I don't mind visitors but weirdly I find it difficult to ask for my baby back! (As in, if someone's holding her, I find it hard asking them to pass her back to me. Which is ridiculous, she's mine!)
Your DH needs to give his head a shake. Either he gets on side with you, or you take baby and barricade yourself in the bedroom when visitors descend on you!
Yeah first grandchild and they are getting so carried away! Unfortunately both not that busy as one is unemployed and other doesnt work that much. I think i will just have to lock myself away! Im breastfeeding so atleast i can use the excuse i need to feed baby and go away for an hour
Totally get where you are coming from, have been in nearly exactly the same situation myself. First thing, you and your baby's needs come above those of the grandparents. You're the mother! Time for bonding in those early days is so important.
I was lucky in that I'd read MN threads on this issue before the birth and got DH to read through some too. We decided what would work for us (one set of visitors per day, very early days only an hour visit max, days off from visitors too) and spent lots of lovely snuggly time cuddled up with newborn. Whenever family looked like they might get a bit shirty at what they saw as restricted access, we just pipped them at the post and said 'oh thank you for being so understanding, you know it means a lot to us that we are able to have some space in these early days to settle in as a new family'. Generally people were very good.
But if your DH won't put his foot down to his family, just escape to your bedroom with baby when you've had enough as you'll suddenly 'know' that a feed is necessary!
And tell your DH that pushing 'breaks' from your 2 week old risks interfering with bonding! Stay strong on this, your maternal instincts are right.
Listen, you are 2 weeks post partum and have a very tiny infant. At this point it is mother and baby as the priority - not baby everyone else gets to enjoy.
Tell your husband that you need quiet time for you and baby to establish bonding and routines. Tell him that you are glad his extended family all got to see the newborn but now it is over - you need quiet time. If anyone visits it should be PIL and that should be at your convenience.
If he says that's not the way we do it tell him you are a just delivered mother with an infant to mind and this is the way YOU are doing it and in fact you are a complete family now and this is the way your family is doing it.
aah I could have written this!! exactly the same experience. it will get better, except that now the 2 weeks are done you're bombarded by the more "considerate" people who wanted to give you a few weeks alone before visiting...
we had so many visitors from dh side that I cancelled planned visits from my friends to give me some sort of break. you really need to talk to dh again it's too much!! also is he not annoyed with pil coming everyday? we stopped answering the phone / didn't let them through the door... eager grandparents! took a while for them to get the message.
4 hours is way too long. if I were you and dh isn't listening just do the minimum - cup of tea with them then sleep. they could hold baby whilst you rest? I personally wouldn't use bf as an excuse to leave the room as I found bf in front of everyone from the start has made life so much easier as DD feeds a lot and it took away any embarrassment / awkwardness.
my mil arranged a big family gathering when DD was 1 week it was hard work but we did get go cross a lot of people off meeting her that day. maybe an idea?
dh needs to listen to you though! enjoy your baby, this will pass!
When does your DH go back to work? You need to find yourself groups to go to and a busy maternity leave social life!
Sorry, I don't think I explained that well! In that you can say "sorry, can't do x today, we've got baby massage" etc.
Sounds difficult. Your DH should be supporting you OH and putting people off. I think 4-6 weeks is a long time Luna especially for close family and it may cause bad feeling bit it's your choice . You will bond with your baby anyway. I think this initial rush is a temporary phase and will calm down. At least when new mums stayed in hospital numbers of visitors were limited!
It sounds like its not just the fact that its visitors, the problem is how long they're staying. You need to practice standing up after one cup of tea and saying, "oh that time already. Thanks for coming, lovely seeing you!!"
It's partly your DH's problem and partly your fault for not being assertive enough. Who cares if you're rude - it's your house - you make the rules!
Not sure whether this will be the case for you too, but something which I found helped me appreciate IL visits rather than worry about the extra work was to let go of my pre-baby expectations that I should look after guests in my house. It took quite a while - and encouragement from DH - since it goes so against everything you've learned.
Once I decided that if I was tired I'd leave them and go have a lie down (taking DD with me if I wanted, or leaving her if she wanted a warm pair of arms), that they could make their own tea, pop to the shops for more food, and make do with eating whatever we had in/make us all something, it all became much easier and more pleasant - for everyone in fact, since they were really keen to help and wanted to make things easier for us too (I just struggled to let them at first).
I know that not everyone has lovely ILs, and yours might have different expectations - but if that's your situation then I suspect that thickening your skin and doing it anyway is probably your least bad option. Worst case, they come over less..
If it helps, now that DD is older I absolutely love weekends with the ILs since I can properly put my feet up and relax, knowing that DD is having a wonderful time with lots of doting relatives! And children benefit so much from having strong ties with their extended family. If you can make this work for you now, it'll be fab in the long term.
oh and at 2 weeks, it's perfectly reasonable for you to say you don't want him to leave the house without you.
But rather than just refuse, try diffusing it with an alternative 'I'm not comfortable with him going out without me yet, but do give him a cuddle in the living room while I have a lie down'
If they persist, just carry on cheerfully refusing and offering the same alternative, phrased in different ways. 'My hormones simply won't allow me to be out of earshot. I think there are some biscuits in the kitchen - DFIL, why don't you get them while DMIL sits here? I'll just be upstairs. ' This is a skill you will make good use of when your DS is older...
We had inlaws over for the 1st 2 weeks as they live abroad. If i Could go back id have paid for a hotel!! In the end i told them baby was going upstairs with me when i was tired because thats what would happen when they weren't around and OH was back at work. It was like a weight was lifted when they left. We have his christening in 2 weeks and they aren't staying here. I've also said no one is welcome at ours in the morning of the christening as its going to be hectic enough as it is. Once you get into the swing of being the boss it's quite fun Congratulations on your new arrival
It will get better, OP. But as previous posters have said, it really helps if your DH will back you up when you put your foot down. FWIW, my dh just thought I was being an unreasonable pain about his parents coming over at night and staying well past dinner/bed time until I completely lost it in front of them one time, grabbed the dogs and a bottle of wine and flounced off into the night, leaving the 3 of them and two-week old DS. I wish it hadn't come to that, but DH and PIL did finally get the picture.
We had this in the first two weeks and it was mainly my family and friends, DH had three weeks off work and found it a bit much as I was missing lunch and naps because of it. He wasn't happy, so I spoke to my family and cancelled everything for his last week off and we just had time for the three of us.
Felt bad as I am used to my family and don't find them a bother, but realised it was selfish when he wanted the time to bond with his daughter and be a Dad. Your DH needs to support you x
Join the discussion
Please login first.