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My mum's comments towards my kids.(84 Posts)
It's hard to fit everything in without waffling. But I've got a five year and two year old. When my daughter was the only one she was center of attention, if we went to my mum and dad's or wherever. She was the only child unless my sister's children were around. Then they'd all be treated equally. She was seen as a relaxed chilled baby/ toddler and made my parents happy. They never particularly put much effort in on their part. If you didn't visit them then you didn't see them. It's always been one sided. They are very tidy people. They allowed a few toys out and the kids had snacks given. I always Quickly hoovered the evidence up or my dad would moan about the crumbs in a loud voice. He was only joking but his voice sounds intimidating to a child as they don't understand sarcasm and he doesn't smile until the kids are looking abit worried. He loves them but he's not the best with them. He does try though and he misses them if we don't visit.
When my son came along my daughter changed. She became quiet and refused to talk to grownups. She has no issues at school. She just struggles around me with other adults. unfortunately 2 years on she is yet to speak to my parents still. It has been frustrating. But they react wrong. I've told them time and time again what she needs. She needs time with them. They need to sit and colour with her. Talk to her with a calmer voice. Take her for a walk. But it's fallen on deaf ears. My mum especially has decided numerous things over the last two years. I've watched them say things to her brother like you can have an ice cream but she can't. Or he will be able to talk before you. The biggest problem is their faces. If only they could see how they look. They look angry. They look sarcastic. They give me a vibe they don't like her because of it. Especially my mum. Sometimes she shows signs of understanding but she soon forgets.
My mum's actually in hospital at the moment and it's really hard to feel annoyed at her. I've taken the kids around a few times before she went in 2 weeks ago and I've been to check on my dad.
I'm not making excuses but they get bored up there. Neither of my parents particularly play. They have a small amount of toys in the wardrobe. Nothing suitable for my daughter. A babies toy telephone and a shape sorter and two toddler vehicles. They have never thought about getting something for my daughters age. They say they have no room for anything else. I take toys up and they don't show interest. So the kids are excited to show them the game or whatever but they don't seem interested in having a quick play.
This results in them being "feral". They actually are not being "feral" to most people I doubt but my parents seem to be judging my parenting as lately, they say they are naughty. They end up wanting to go outside as the bungalow is boring. They go outside. Two year old wants the watering can. 5 year old helps. Sometimes my dad lets them water things. But then the two year old wants another can of water and gets upset. I have to make sure the ball doesn't go on the vegetables or the flowers. Not easy! So they get moaned at for that. Then they start giggling and running about together. Or they start playing with the sofa cushions inside. There's literally no safe way a toddler can be there at the moment. But my parents don't see it that way. They say my kids are naughty. They say I've got no control over them. I must admit when I was telling them to calm down and stop doing all the above they were ignoring me. I did have to get my oldest to sit down and tell her if she doesnt behave we'd be going home. I tell her that she needs to help her brother learn to behave.
Called my mum up yesterday in hospital (bone injury) told her how hard things were and getting on with things was impossible. Told her I was fed up at home. She said well I was always ok when you was kids. But your kids are much naughtier than you were. She also said to me last week that it's the parents fault not the kids. She said it with abit of humour last week. But I'm starting to get abit pissed off.
They are not naughty they are just energetic and bored. Definitely slightly cheekier than I was too. But when I look back on me and my sister being little we were always warned. I remember my dad saying make sure you sit down and behave at my nans. We used to sit in the chair and barely move. We were allowed out in the garden. Yeah we were better behaved but we were also about 6//7/8 ish with these memories. I remember well that we didn't mess about. My children definitely mess about. But they also are funny, clever, and have different interests when you get to know them. The sad thing is me and my sister both grew up with minimal confidence and nothing that good came out of it. Infact being told to sit and behave taught me not to relax at parties. So I never get up to dance at family get togethers or anything. I am reserved and have always watched other women dance with confidence or just mix with confidence. Perhaps they were not told to sit and behave?
I feel sad really that my kids are naughty for not sitting in a chair calm. I've been stewing over it the last two days and I'm worried I've gone wrong and they are right.
What do you think? Sorry it's long.
First of all and .
I read your post and honestly what it sounded like is you were patented a generation ago and things have changed.
Take the focus off what your parents think and try to focus on what you want to teach your kids and what concerns, if any, you have about your kids.
I don't think your kids sound naughty, I think your parents sound too strict.
I just wouldn’t take them back round your mum & dad’s.
Your parents sound self centred and only thinking of themselves and trying to treat your children as if they are there for their entertainment.
I would refuse to take my children to visit someone who said to one of my children "you can have an ice cream but X can't ". That is bullying and unacceptable.
I would really try to put distance between yourself and your parents, and maybe consider counselling on why you are so worried about pleasing them rather than defending your children.
Your parents sound very selfish, inflexible and repressed and you have absolutely no obligation to bring your children up following their (frankly) miserable rules and regulations.
Personally I would reduce or even stop visiting and lower contact and then get yourself some therapy to help deal with the very real effect this has had on you.
You don’t owe your parents this time with your kids and if the whole experience is as stressful as it sounds then why put all of you through it? Especially for your DD who is being treated horribly, with disdain and constant negative comparison to her sibling. Just awful.
I would step right back.
Your daughter is obviously very anxious around them so I would avoid seeing them with her for a while at least.
They actually sound somewhat like my in-laws, who are lovely but not particularly warm, they have a selection of 40 year old children’s toys that get wheeled out and they don’t tolerate mess or potential mess (no feet on sofas, drinks sitting at the table).
They’re not shouty or disapproving though and if they were I don’t think we’d have taken the kids round there when they were younger. As it is it was always stressful trying to keep toddlers and small children occupied and out of trouble round there.
Can your parents come to you in the future? It’s much easier to set the tone in your own house. Would you be able to say, look, we want to see you but you’ll have to come here?
I wouldn’t allow my parents to bully DD like that - it is really unpleasant behaviour. Why do you want dc to have a relationship with them when they are clearly not bothered?
Poor kids! They can't win with them can they. It sounds like your parents want them to act like adults!
They don't have fun there so a threat that if they don't behave they get to go home isn't a threat - it's a promise!
The ice cream thing is a red flag. That's awful behaviour from a grandparent and I would be having words about that. No wonder she doesn't want to talk them if she hears things like that.
Is there any reason your parents can't come to yours? If your kids were in their own environment they might feel more relaxed and inclined to chat. But to be honest I would limit contact with them, they are damaging your daughter.
Deep breath op I think you know deep down it's your parents who are in the wrong. It's just a shame how they have behaved with your children considering how they could have been. and
I can see why you might not have it, but you really need to get the confidence in your own parenting and ignore your parents opinions. They seem to have not made all the right decisions with you and are even less likely to have an idea how best to bring up your children. You sound lovely, involved and thoughtful. I was honestly just see them less and less and put more boundaries in place when you do visit. Do you have a partner, what does he think about your parents?
Honestly I wouldnt take them back round. Your mum and dad need a reality check. They're making things worse for your daughter and they will possibly give your son an ego of being 'favourite'
Serious words and follow throughs on not going round with them
One on one time with each grandparent and your daughter and son separately so they are not feeling compared. Once your parents have accepted how they need to approach this.
I hope this gets better
I don't think I'd be able to keep putting my kids through this trauma. Sorry it's not something more constructive, but I would just stop the visits. Maybe they would act differently in your surroundings? If not, then no contact.
OP - I just read your post and felt so sad that your parents are not interested in your children.
I feel for your children, it just sounds so boring at your parents. The way your DD is being treated is awful, poor child.
Stop taking the children there. Just stop.
If they ask why you don’t bring them with you when you visit, tell them calming and directly, “You criticise them when we are here, and you criticise the way I’m bring them up even when we are not here. None of us need that.”
It sounds like that your childhood wasn't a good one and that you are seeing this and not wanting it for your own.
Its not a generation thing, I'm in my 50s and no one I know was brought up like that. That sounds Victorian.
I think you have reached a point in your life where something is going to change.
You mustn't let your D be subjected to their nastiness. That will compound her selective mutism even further and cause more damage. I'd stop taking them to visit.
Be honest with your parents. Explain that your childhood was miserable and they are not going to repeat this with your own children.
I think this is a generational thing.
Expecting them to ‘behave’ was for a lot of people how they too were brought up, parenting is much more relaxed now.
However it’s not fair to give one an ice cream and not the other.
Invite them to yours is the only advice I have.
I'm sorry OP but your parents sound like really really horrible people.
Its no wonder your children dont want to spend time with them if they act like that- they are expecting them to act like mini adults. They arent. Theyre children and they are banging like normal children do.
I really would back off and not take the kids round. Its not normal to have to hoover up every 5 mins and be paranoid about a bloody crumb. Thats ridiculous and as for the ice cream? thats despicable behaviour and makes your parents actually sound like petulant children.
Back off and reduce your expectations of them. I know it horrible, but you have to stop expecting them to be loving grandparents when they clearly arent capable of that. Please limit the time your kids spend with these people, they arent nice and they will affect their self esteem just as it sounds like they have affected yours in a very negative way.
behaving not banging
You clearly care a lot about what your parents think so this won’t be easy but you need to take some control of the situation and stand up for your children. Maybe use this thing your mum has said to address it when she comes out of hospital. ‘My children aren’t naughty but they do struggle being bored at your house so we are going to make some changes...’
Those changes could be things like
-bringing some new toys for their house
-bringing an activity for them to do together with grandparents
- your parents coming over to yours or meeting at a park more than going to theirs
Depending on how your parents respond to some changes will tell you how to proceed. Given the ice cream comment though I wouldn’t ever be leaving your children alone with them and if you hear another comment like that you need to step in a override your parents/defend your daughter and consider reducing contact
Stop taking them to your mum and dads.
Your parents sound very much like children should be seen and not heard. You want different for your kids and that's OK. It's not fair to expect a five year old and a two year old to sit still and quietly for long periods of time.
I also feel for your DD so much. My youngest also went through a phase of being selective mute. My parents were really good with him about it. I found out because of it that my dad went through similar when he was younger. So my dad was fab with him, setting his train set up for him and just sat quietly playing trains with him.
Thinking about the trains, my parents and PIL are probably the exact opposite of yours OP. Both have huge boxes of kids toys there. We're both from big families so lots of grandkids. My dad especially absolutely dotes on his grandkids, sits playing lego and drawing with them. His own dad died when he was in his 60s and so my dad never really got to experience having his own dad be there as a grandfather. My parents always take my kids side and tell me I'm too strict with my kids!!
Why are you subjecting your DC to this? Stop taking them !
My ex in-laws were horrible to my DC so I refused to allow them anywhere near them. You as their parent need to protect them !
I have been in your situation and now don’t go round anymore. My DC have very little contact with my DM as a result. She “pops round” on their birthdays and Christmas and still manages to criticise and I have had to learn to stand up for myself and DC’s. One of my DC has ASD and ADHD and she makes comments like “they could help if it they tried” and has unreasonable expectations of them. Made it feel like it was my fault for not controlling them or managing better. It took counselling for me to be able to do it because of my upbringing and being fearful. Now I advocate for my children but we have no real relationship as a result. I feel sad when I see DC who have lovely relationships with grandparents but am just resigned to the fact that is not our family. I should add my DC are just fine, see her as a strange crazy old woman and we have a giggle about it. They don’t seem to have “missed out” I guess because they have never known any different. And I feel like a much better mother without criticism and worry. 💐 for you.
I would at least reduce time at your parents. They are looking at your time as children with rose tinted glasses, forgetting how tough it can be to raise children
They also don’t realise times have moved on
If they want to see the children then let them come to you. That way the kids are in a home they are used to, with their own toys.
I would also stop the you can have but she can’t. If they do this again I would simply say you are being unfair to xx and I can’t have that and you must leave, if at yours, or you leave if at theirs
This is very sad to read. My childhood was a bit similar. Please don't let them abuse your daughter in this way. Giving one kid an ice cream and not another?! she will remember this. She needs to see you protecting her from this.
It seems like your parents were much stricter than you are as a parent. I don't think they should have to have toys for your children in their house, if they don't want them then you can bring them with you. Maybe see them at a park or at your house instead
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