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Advice for a friend

(13 Posts)
ErrorError Mon 08-Oct-12 20:23:05

A pregnant friend of mine (A) is having some trouble with a really overbearing friend (B), who keeps calling and insisting she wants to be at the birth, when friend A only wants her DP there. Friend B has also been saying newborn will be "her baby" and she'll be like a second mummy to the LO (implying she's like supernanny and A will obviously need her help.) It has been a few years since her own DC were babies and yet she bombards friend A with advice, some slightly outdated/irrelevant. Friend A has tried to tell her nicely that she wants to be left to get on with things and B will find out about the birth when everyone else does. But friend B is not taking the hint. Friend A has had an anxious pregnancy and struggles with confrontation at the best of times.

Was going to post in AIBU but then thought I would get slammed for interfering at all, when that isn't the case. I just want to know if I can give Friend A any advice on how to deal with B's behaviour.

plonko Mon 08-Oct-12 20:33:44

Friend A sounds like she has the patience of a saint!

Perhaps friend A could tell friend B that the advice administered by midwives changes all the time (seeing as it's based on science, not anecdotes) and she's already getting sound advice from the NHS. I'm amazed that someone other than the partner could be up front enough to nominate themselves as birth partner! I'd hit the roof! hmm

Though personally if I had an overbearing friend who was behaving like a know-it-all I'd probably initially try to steer every conversation away from babies, and if that didn't work I'd probably cut down my contact with that person. But I'm a wuss...

If I was friend A I would be avoiding friend B at all costs.

She sounds like a baby snatcher and I dont say that lightly.

AlisonDB Mon 08-Oct-12 20:39:31

Wow friend B sounds like a right Fekkin pain in the ass!!!

Can the DP of friend A step in an tell B to back off?

Nobody should assume they can gatecrash such an intimate important moment in a families life, what does DP think of sharing this time with friend B, my DH would be fumin!!
I think as it affects DP directly if I was friend A and if I couldn't stand up to B I would get DP to do this for me.

Tbh B doesn't sound like the kind of friend you would want to have,
Controlling, possessive and judgemental!

Can friend A start screening B's phone calls/ not meeting up as often? Anything that will put a little distance between them?

Not sure what else non confrontational to advise...... Regardless of what A does I think B will take offence,

AlisonDB Mon 08-Oct-12 20:41:19

Domestic Goddess my 1st thought exactly! Hand that rocks the cradle sprang to mind!
B sounds bloody scary!!

ErrorError Mon 08-Oct-12 20:43:55

I am friends with both, but closer to A than B. B is A's oldest friend, which must equate in her minds as being best. B is quite an outspoken person in the first place so it doesn't surprise me at all that she's suggested this. It really has gone too far, with her asking A to ring her as soon as she goes into labour! I am having lunch with these friends soon and will try to steer the conversation away from baby related topics, if that would help. I wondered if friend B is envious on some level as her DC are school age, whereas her own friends are just starting their families, so perhaps she feels left out as she is already past that stage of parenting. Still no excuse for her behaviour though. Friend A is already avoiding phonecalls from B, but B still asks if she's "made her decision yet" (re: birth partners!)

Unfortunately I feel like I couldn't step in too much, as I'm not a mum and would get shot down by B, but I can always refer to NHS & science, that may work!

ErrorError Mon 08-Oct-12 20:46:29

A's DP does not want B at the birth and has told her so himself. But B seems to think they are still just making their minds up about it. It is an intimate thing, and I feel so sorry for friend A at having her experience hijacked by this woman. Other than this, B is usually a lovely person, but only seems to be overbearing with A, no-one else. And has been since they were at school together, (I didn't know them back then.)

plonko Mon 08-Oct-12 21:29:48

Then friend B is going to get a bit of a shock when she finds out A has had her baby with just DP to hold her hand. Just like the rest of A's friends and family, maybe her lack of empathy/reason will hit home at that moment. And like you say, A's DP has already told her, what more can they do to drive the message home?

There does seem to be some jealousy, especially with B acting possessively. Any chance A will just snap and tell her to do one?

18wksplus Mon 08-Oct-12 21:32:21

If A really can't deal with telling B to back off, she could just not tell her when she goes into labour... Just tell her it happened so quickly there wasn't time blah blah blah.

B might suspect something if A stops answering her calls/texts for hours and hours, but even if she goes to the hospital (!) they won't let her in.

That or A's partner needs to get involved and tell B to back off. Harsh but deserved.

RubyrooUK Mon 08-Oct-12 21:50:01

One of my friends was a little bit like B when I was pregnant. With her, she was just so thrilled that I was having a baby and sharing her experience (we were very old friends) that she got completely mental about it.

Actually, now I think about it, she did ring me to say she was in labour when she had a baby. grin

Because she was a very good friend and I didn't want to hurt her, I tried to be sensitive. So I moved her away from the overbearing stuff to activities that would be helpful and would make her feel really needed.

So while my DH alone was there for the labour, he rung her every day while I was in hospital for a five minute update. He asked her to please make me lots of food as I was so ill (she did, amazingly) for when I came out of hospital. He basically found a whole load of jobs and made her feel very important. He likes her to and got that her being overbearing was meant in a good way.

And it did feel lovely when she did so many nice things and has made our friendship even more special. And she's showing zero interest in being at the birth of DC2......smile

RubyrooUK Mon 08-Oct-12 21:51:11

He likes her too not to....

ErrorError Mon 08-Oct-12 22:07:53

Rubyroo you make interesting points there. They are old friends and so even though I think B would take it really badly if people were blunt with her, I think she would be forced to understand as she's got no other choice. But I wouldn't want them to fall out badly, as like you say, B could become a real asset if she feels important. I think she is just super excited for A, who has had a difficult time conceiving in the firstplace, that she's just gone way overboard with it.

plonko & 18wks I think if it comes to the crunch (which it will!) DP will finally tell her to do one. As I imagine phoning B when in labour will be the last thing on B's mind!

I suppose the only thing I can do is try to steer B away from baby topics like I said earlier, but will tell A that I intend to do this to help her out (just to make sure she doesn't think I'm uninterested in her pregnancy.) She just said she wants to be able to have a normal conversation with B like they used to, without her asking a million and one questions about pregnancy/baby stuff. But this isn't likely to ease up just yet I fear, especially when LO arrives. Though when that happens, A will have the excuse of being 'too busy' with baby to deal with B. Thanks all for your advice. I'll tell A she's not crazy! (She is annoyed at B but thought this was a normal level of attention to expect!!!)

ErrorError Mon 08-Oct-12 22:10:30

oops, last thing on A's mind! (re: labour)

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