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do you ever feel like a social outcast at family events

(11 Posts)
cupcake78 Sun 27-Jul-08 19:38:21

Feeling down at the moment and just wondering if like alot of things this is just a stage of parenting that most mothers go through, but its just not talked about? Ds 10mths in the next week.

Have had a busy weekend two family functions - but at both have found I have been the one that looks after everyone else's kids as well as my own, have been last at the food so only got the dreggs and eating while everyone else was clearing up around me (how to make someone feel welcome). Ds has been compared to the other grandchildren by the grandparents (not in a good way)and my parenting has been undermined by comments such as "he's always an angel for us" and "he should be at least crawling by now".

Today I had to que barge the buffet to get ds his lunch as everyone else had just jumped in, and yes I got comments. What ever happened to the kids getting theirs first!
I know I am probabley being a little touchy, but feeling really isolated and its like i'm not seen as me anymore I am just seen as ds's additional carer and family babysitter.

I never realised being a parent was so lonely.

lljkk Sun 27-Jul-08 19:48:09

I get this, I suppose it keeps me from getting into arguments with extended family (all of us quite opinionated & oft ill-informed).

Poppychick Sun 27-Jul-08 19:56:05

Know what you mean. If I was you I'd back off that way they should perhaps realise they're taking you for granted (if they are). They may surprise you by making a big effort if they realise.

I would stop asking their opinions, stop asking for any favours, reduce contact. Don't invite them to make comments by telling them about DS not crawling, being naughty etc. Doing this will only give them the power to say things that upset you.

whomovedmychocolate Sun 27-Jul-08 20:16:27

Your family don't sound very nice or very considerate at all. But why are you allowing them to do this. If it was me, next time I would turn up with a bloody picnic hamper and sit there with my DC and feed them and if anyone commented say 'well didn't want to take a chance with all these gannets around'.

Seriously though, don't take this sort of crap. Your child will get there in his own time and if that's the sort of encouragement he will receive for his achievements later on, I'd keep him as far away from his darling grandparents as possible.

I'm pissed off on your behalf angry. Sounds like you are having a crisis of confidence and they aren't helping! It will get easier btw. Particularly if you have another child, you'll be too knackered to care and just tell to sod off fairly openly.

My inlaws are hugely critical. I comfort myself with the fact they are old and hopefully will die before I have the chance to kill the buggers! wink

DancingMamaWithBabes Sun 27-Jul-08 20:48:01

ooo..been there, next time you find yourself looking after all the kids be assertive in asking another parent to get you some food whilst you babysit all the children. (I have always found it too hard to ignore children who deserve attention but get ignored by the majority of people at a do.)

DH and I once attended a friends family/friends do and were mistaken for paid staff shock The friends who had invited us were really blush but were most appreciative that we bothered to care in helping as not one of their blood members or other friends seemed to want to help clear up etc

I have taken to telling people I prefer not to get involved in playing the comparison game as each child is special and individual in their own way and there is nothing wrong with that!'

Chin up and practice being assertive, you don't deserve this kind of treatment.

FioFio Sun 27-Jul-08 20:49:33

Message withdrawn

Elephantjuice Sun 27-Jul-08 20:52:51

That's really awful, I can feel myself getting wound up just reading your post!

I have experienced some of this with family. Do your best to ignore them. I don't know what they think gives them the right to make these comments, but they do it anyway. I find a slightly startling direct reply helps, something like "No he's not crawling yet, he's very slow." You know it's not true of course, but you shock them into shutting up for a while.

Not much you can do about the food thing, apart from anticipate it. I always go "armed" to these events, with snacks, books, stickers etc. Then I retreat with my dc to a far corner - I mean, it gets you out of doing small talk with the crumblies, doesn't it?

GrapeJelly Mon 28-Jul-08 11:35:45

Not all families are cosy. Some are hard work and it sounds like yours is one of those. try not to take it personally and as Elephant says, anticipate what's likely to happen at these events and go armed with supplies and attitude. I know exactly how you feel. I too never realised how lonely being a parent can be at times. Good luck, and don't let it look like you're sad/bothered at these events. remember that they're only for a few hours out of the whole week.

reban Mon 28-Jul-08 18:51:54

Im lucky in that i dont have this with my family, but what i do do is if im struggling i will give family members a role. So ill ask my mum or mil to chnage youngest nappy or feed one of the kids whilst i look after another or help in someway. I think if you are getting lumbered with other peoples kids as well i would put your foot down and say things like "theres an awful smeel coming from the direction od so and sos bum" or i think your youngest has just jumped off shed roof" etc. Then they will have to ddo something about their own kids!

cupcake78 Tue 29-Jul-08 09:33:47

Thanks for your replys. I think your all right, I will be better prepared next time and try to remember that these things don't last forever.

I am trying to egnor the comments and usually I would end up saying something. Just in a bit of a hole at the moment bur sure it will not be for long.

Thanks for your support ladies grin

naturalblonde Tue 29-Jul-08 21:31:14

At a family gathering, I had to sit in a separate room to eat with the kids as my dd was the youngest and needed help, and the kids were told to all go and sit at the dining table while the adults sat outside.

Thought that was a bit inconsiderate.

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