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Absent in-laws suddenly want to be here every weekend.

(80 Posts)
teenybitresentful Sun 18-Oct-09 22:16:10

DH is a doctor. It took him 13 years to become a consultant and for most of this period he worked horrendous antisocial hours. For a long time he worked weeks in excess of 100 hours.

For most of this time it didn't bother me - I learned to live with it, though often felt lonely at weekends. However, when we had our first child I found this very difficult to cope with and looking back, I probably had PND. Our daughter was a poor sleeper and generally grumpy baby and I was left alone all weekend and had to do the nights and the days when DH was on night shift.

Weekends were always particularly hard because friends were busy doing "family" things. It was a very isolating period.

We had no local support with the exception of DH's parents. During the first 4 years of DD's life they never once offered to look after her, never came over to keep me company or even just "drop by" at weekends. They ONCE took her for a walk because we begged them to help us when DH worked a whole month without a day off.

Anyway, we now have a second baby and DH started a consultant job in August. Our life is much much easier because he hardly ever has to work a weekend and never has to work nights. All of a sudden we have some quality of life; some "family" life.

BUT - the minute he got the new job, his parents started turning up EVERY weekend. They have fallen into a pattern of telephoning on a Friday afternoon, speaking to DD1 (who is now four) and arranging to visit.

I am so incredibly resentful of them.

Why couldn't they visit when I really needed them? They really expect to start comandeering our family life the minute it has started.

DH agrees with my assessment of the situation, but they are his parents.

I just want to rant and vent and for someone to understand....

Is this unreasonable? How do I cope with it?

bigchris Sun 18-Oct-09 22:22:07

maybe they come round to see their son?

maybe they thought your family would rally round?

sorry to sound harsh but your husband chose his career ( a very well paid one) and worked hard, his parents arent responsible for his choice of career. Did you ask for their help?

HellBent Sun 18-Oct-09 22:26:02

Maybe they don't think his time is as limited with you now so they can visit more often?

Also some GP's prefer older kids, I know my MIL does.Did you ever ask for help? I think my MIL would not want to come over to visit with just me and DC's, unless she is babysitting and we get on ok. If she's coming for a visit she'll do it on a day that DP and I are both here.

teenybitresentful Sun 18-Oct-09 22:26:58

oh yes, someone always comes along and reminds me that DH is very well paid.

(Most people would be surprised to learn that junior doctors earned HALF PAY for their overtime. That's right - full pay for the first 40 hours and half pay for the other 60).

His salary is immaterial. Having a secure income doesn't help you overcome PND.

Yes, we asked. I have no family at all - no parents - so they were hardly waiting for them to rally round.

teenybitresentful Sun 18-Oct-09 22:29:38

I just don't get it. We have always got along well but having children really highlighted that they only seem interested when DH is home.

They obviously know I have no parents of my own.

For example, last year DH worked boxing day. I was home alone with DD (3.5 years) and I was pregnant. BIL and SIL were at their house for dinner but my daughter and I weren't invited.

They phoned at 9.20pm because they knew he was working until 9pm hmm

bigchris Sun 18-Oct-09 22:30:59

he chose to work long hours for low pay then? i dont get why people complain about what they chose to do

i'm sorry you had pnd sad

maybe they have more free time now? maybe they didnt realise you were feeling so low sad

bigchris Sun 18-Oct-09 22:31:58

or maybe they have just realised how hard it was for you and are trying to make up for it?

mrsboogie Sun 18-Oct-09 22:32:56

it sounds like she did ask for their help and didn't get it.

I would be outraged by their behaviour to be honest. Sounds like they only feel free to come round now that they won't be having to do anyone any favours.

You must tell your husband that he has to speak to them and say that you are finally, after many years of hard work and having no family time, reaping the rewards of your sacrifices and wish to enjoy said family time for a while without interruptions from visitors.

He's a consultant presumably he can garner enough authority to lay the law down to his parents.

If I were you I would make plans for every weekend for a few months until they got the message.

Conundrumish Sun 18-Oct-09 22:34:45

Can't believe the lack of support you are getting on this thread. I would be pretty fed up too.

Can you just agree with your DH when you want to see them (one day a month?) and say to them that you are very busy now but would love to see them the first Sunday of each month for eg?

DuelingFANGo Sun 18-Oct-09 22:35:08

I can't understand why anyone would bring your husband's salary into it.

You need to get your husband to tell them they can't come over every weekend. Or tell them yourself when they ring.

6feetundertheGroundhogs Sun 18-Oct-09 22:35:45

I rather think they waited till it all got easier.

GP don't like to get themselves involved.

This is not the first time I've heard of the DH parents not being of much use, the new mum has PND and they are just distant.

I know I'd feel exactly as pissed off and resentful as you do.

Can't you unplug the phone on the quiet on Fridays??? Do they arrange to come round with YOU/DH or do they do it thru your DD?

Can you 'find' a pressing madeup weekend engagement. If DH understands your sentiments, can he agree to go along with a few excuses so that you aren't spending every single weekend with them?

teenybitresentful Sun 18-Oct-09 22:36:07

he chose to work long hours for low pay?

Do you think 18 year olds entering medical school realised that was what was in store?

And when they qualify after 5 years and they realise, what do you think they are going to do? Sack it off? Go get a job waiting tables?

No, they put up with it, and so do their other halves.

DH took a £12,000 pay cut in 2008.

People think they know what a doctor's life is like and actually they don't have a clue. It's very hard on their spouse, especially when kids come along.

I am looking for support, not a bashing because my husband earns a decent wage.

6feetundertheGroundhogs Sun 18-Oct-09 22:36:48

Sorry, I meant some GPs don't like to get involved.. until it gets more interesting

CarGirl Sun 18-Oct-09 22:37:06

I would feel very hurt in your situation too. If they are coming over too often then your DH needs to make arrangements for them to come over as and when it suits you as a family.

mrsboogie Sun 18-Oct-09 22:38:01

I don't understand what its got to do with their income or his doing overtime (he wouldn't have had much choice about that would he, if he wanted to get on?)either, if he had been working long shifts in a petrol station it would make no difference.

The point is these sound like a right pair of selfish tossers and they should be told where to get off now, in the nicest possible way.

warthog Sun 18-Oct-09 22:38:14

i would be upset too. upshot is they don't want to be involved unless your dh is around. it is crap. but you can look at it two ways:

1. continue to be resentful and hold it against them. this will prevent you deepening your relationship and forming the support network that you yearn for with them in the future.

2. put it behind you and look at it as an opportunity to get some help on the weekends. after a bit ask them if they will look after the kids while you and dh go for a walk and so on. one day they may realise they let you down. they may not.

i don't think it's helping you to feel resentful. try and put it behind you. write it down and burn it. act cheerful and welcoming when they come round even if you don't feel it. you will get over this over time. there is no quick fix that i know of.

warthog Sun 18-Oct-09 22:39:21

yes, and limit their visits too...

abbierhodes Sun 18-Oct-09 22:41:02

Bigchris, I find that attitude really harsh. I chose to have kids, I chose my job, I chose my husband and I chose the house I live in, but once in a while I have a good moan about all of those things.
Do you never complain? Ever?
Cut the OP some slack, she did not, I'm sure, choose PND, or unsupportive inlaws, or to have no family herself.

Heated Sun 18-Oct-09 22:41:07

Some grandparents just aren't the hands on, supportive type. I think you have to make your own plans for the weekend so that when they phone on fridays it won't be convenient and then get into a routine of when you do want to see them.

Twintummy Sun 18-Oct-09 22:43:12

I can't understand what your husband's salary has to do it with it. Your in-laws are selfish and insensitive. BUT they may only be able to deal with older grandchildren. My in-laws are lovely but never been able to deal with babies. Mine are now in full-time school (DD is 7, twins are 4) they want to be far more involved. I feel like screaming I needed you in the early days especially as my parents weren't around.

Instead I bite my tongue, accept they couldn't cope in hard years (despite me needing them most) and accept their help. The kids stay over once in a while which gives us a much needed break, plus we have the occasional lunch together which is a luxury.

Slambang Sun 18-Oct-09 22:43:20

I can see you must feel hurt and fed up but the answer is probably quite simply that they want to see their son more than they want to see you. Sorry but it's quite natural.

I don't want it to sound harsh and it's a tough one to have to grin and bear but probably:
- they are slightly thoughtless and don't realise that you need their support (perhaps you don't ask in a way they hear?)

- they are quite old fashioned and assume that its not their role to step in to a closer family role with you (could they be worried that they will be seen as busybody interfering inlaws?)

- they love and miss their son very much and want to chat to him and see him (not you because they are not your parents)

So they will visit when he is there and they will ring when he comes home and not when it's just you.

teenybitresentful Sun 18-Oct-09 22:43:41

mmm have calmed down...

(you wouldn't believe the number of comments I've had from "friends" since DH became a consultant, along the lines "you must be minted" and "it's alright for you" - apart from the fact it's not true, it just smacks of jealously and it's not attractive - really pee's me off when people make assumptions).

Thanks for your support.

You're right, it doesn't help to dwell on it but, my god, I want to slap them.....

I will talk to DH. We will be busy. I will unplug the phone.......

Heated Sun 18-Oct-09 22:44:23

And agree, when they are over show them how they can be useful grandparents - suggest dd takes them for a walk/to the park/play in the garden.

bigchris Sun 18-Oct-09 22:45:54

ok i apologise - i dont think i was that harsh , i said i was sorry for your pnd and for feeling low
i honestly dont get why your inlaws are 'selfish tossers' for wanting to see their family now and not then. Maybe they have realised their mistake and are cack handedily trying to make amends? Just tell them you are busy if you dont want to see them do much.

teenybitresentful Sun 18-Oct-09 22:47:32

I guess, when you have no parents, it's worse.

It adds to that loneliness - I hoped when we got married I'd inherit a family but actually they are only interested in him.

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