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Complete failure as a mother

(16 Posts)
Notcontent Tue 25-Sep-12 21:18:11

I am posting this in relationships rather than parenting as it's really about me.

Basically, i have had some close family members visiting for a few days. We keep in close contact but don't see each other very often because they live far away. Anyway, tonight at dinner my 6 year old dd started having a bit of a tantrum. It started with me telling her she couldn't have have something and escalated - you know the kind of thing: I hate this food, everyone is being mean to me, etc. She is usually lovely but sometimes gets into these states and it's like she can't get herself out of it once it starts. It ended up with her being very rude to the family who are visiting - they were upset and obviously think there is something wrong with her. We all talked about it later but I feel like shit. Am sitting in my bedroom and can't stop crying. I feel like they must now think I am a shit parent and that the girl they uses to think was lovely is now a monster.

Their approval is important to me and I am not sure how to get past this.

bushymcbush Tue 25-Sep-12 21:24:32

Do your family members have any experience with children? If they have, surely they will know first hand that the loveliest of children can be brats at times.

unhappyhildebrand Tue 25-Sep-12 21:24:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

unhappyhildebrand Tue 25-Sep-12 21:25:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Hassled Tue 25-Sep-12 21:26:42

Are the family visiting not the sort of people to realise that this is perfectly normal behaviour in a 6 year old? It really is absolutely no reflection on your parenting skills - it's the behaviour of a young child in probably quite high stress circumstances (family meal, people she's unfamiliar with, you've probably been tense in anticipation of the visit and she's picked up on that) for her, responding in a completely standard sort of way.

If your family can't work all that out then the problem is theirs, not yours.

bushymcbush Tue 25-Sep-12 21:26:59

Also, you say they were visiting for a few days, so presumably they saw your dd being her normal lovely self for 95% of their visit?

Notcontent Tue 25-Sep-12 21:33:58

I didn't want to give too much detail to make myself recognisable in real life, but they are my ex-husband's parents - dd's grandparents. I have had a few difficult years - feeling like my life is a disaster - but the only thing i have felt proud of is my role as a mother - everyone, including them, used to say what a great job I did.

Feeling a tiny bit better now, but it's really been a horrible evening. It would not have mattered if it had been my own parents...

Notcontent Tue 25-Sep-12 21:37:55

Hassled, I think you are right - dd was over excited, tired, etc. They love her and know she is a lovely child, but I think they now think I am doing something wrong. Dd did apologise, but it was all a bit too late...

unhappyhildebrand Tue 25-Sep-12 21:38:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Notcontent Tue 25-Sep-12 21:41:38

Thanks unhappy.
Life would be so much easier if we didn't feel like we need other people's approval !!

Opentooffers Tue 25-Sep-12 22:21:40

Yes and it is easier to care less what others think. Your DD apologised, it's never too late for a child to do so, often they don't so that shows how well you are doing.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 26-Sep-12 10:47:33

Kids EXIST to embarrass us, I think. Throwing strops at the most inconvenient times. Being wall-to-wall lovely & polite except on the one occasion when it would actually help. My lovely (calm, together, capable, unflappable) ex-SIL has a DS who, as a small child, was like a cherub one minute and a furious gargoyle on Duracell batteries the next. She would frogmarch him to his room and shut the door with instructions to 'come back when you're nice DS again'. Far from thinking she was a crap mother, I'm still impressed to this day. (For the record, he's now a very lovely, calm & together 30-something)

It's not how the child behaves, it's how you handle the behaviour that counts.

dysfunctionalme Wed 26-Sep-12 11:25:32

Aw that's nothing! My neice shouted at her grandparents that they were fuckheads and ran out the front door. At 9. I mean, she's right, but it was naughty to say so we thought. Hilarious though. And I promise that her parents are very nice, polite people.

The entire point of children is to bury their parents in embarrassment.

She sounds like a fine girl, and you a lovely mum.

arthriticfingers Wed 26-Sep-12 16:52:27

Goodness, we have all been there smile
A contributing factor was probably that you were a bit on tenterhooks - I know have done that, too blush
Give your daughter a big hug and tell her you love her.
You never know, she might even apologize ;)
I am sure that no-one thought anything (people in glass houses and all that!)
and it is only if we witness consistent behaviour problems over time that we register them, anyway.

LesleyPumpshaft Wed 26-Sep-12 17:07:29

DS had/still has a nack of coming out with the most innapropriate things, at the most innapropriate times and he'll do it infont of the worst people imaginable.

In the end I just had to resign myself to certain people tugging on their pearls at my appalling mothering skills. As soon as they left DS would be after a big hug and telling me how much he loved me.

Someone please tell me that DS is not the only kid who does that!

Notcontent Wed 26-Sep-12 21:46:16

Thanks ladies. I really appreciate all the kind words !!

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