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Mum and husband hate each other children's bday headache

38 replies

twinmummyyeah · 04/11/2018 20:39

Hi my mum and husband hate each other (long story husband 90% blame) I've booked to take my Daughters to the ballet for their birthday with husband asked them
If they wanted grandma to go they said no it would put daddy in a bad mood and I could t cope with the atmosphere to be honest would be sooo tense mum says I've hurt her feelings as she's being excluded on their birthday although I said I would go round here at 9 in the morning before we leave for London for cup of tea so she could see the girls that day (need that like hole in head anyway as have to get train up to London by 11am!) Stuck in middle what shall I do?

OP posts:
DeathyMcDeathStarFace · 04/11/2018 21:06

Your mum doesn't have a right to see your dds just because it is a birthday. Yes, it would be nice for her to see them, but there is no law to say she has to see them.

It must be hard to balance things when your dh and dm don't get on at all, but you just have to get on with what you want to do and not let her emotional blackmailing get to you. It is impossible to keep everyone happy and even if you try to you will find someone will be unhappy.

Instead of squeezing in a cup of tea on the day why don't you suggest your mum does a little birthday treat? Maybe she could make them a special birthday tea the evening before or after the actual birthday date if you can make it?

FWIW my boys don't get to see any grandparents on birthdays. It is impossible to visit now as we live over 350 miles away anyway, but before we moved we lived under 10 miles away from one set and under 20 miles away from the other and didn't necessarily see any of them on birthdays. Facetime, a phone call etc. is mainly what happened with us as with school then a visit to one set of gps, then the other gps the boys would never get to bed!

ProfessionallyUnoffended · 04/11/2018 21:08

Gosh that was hard to read with no punctuation! Surely your mum wouldn't/shouldn't expect to go anywhere your DH will be if they don't get on. She must realise that would create such an atmosphere and it wouldn't be fair for your girls. I really feel for you stuck in the middle do you think they will ever make up?

Hellywelly10 · 04/11/2018 21:13

What happened between them?

SilverLining10 · 04/11/2018 21:14

Your mothers wishes doesnt trump your kids father. She can feel upset but it doesnt give her a right to the day. She can see them on another day?

twinmummyyeah · 04/11/2018 21:26

No they'll never make up. It's been building up for years mum was always been a bit high maintenance and my marriage is crumbling and I've been sharing his unreasonable behaviour with my mum which has made her hatred worse understandably! I guess I'm constantly trying to do right by my children and making other people happy and I've fallen through the cracks myself! Interesting to hear you don't think I need to have to get the girls to see her juts because it's their birthday though. Yes they could spend the whole of the next day with my mum that would be great for me but she's upset she wants to see them on their actual birthday!

OP posts:
LightDrizzle · 04/11/2018 21:49

Hmm! You describe your Mum as high maintenance, the fact that not accompanying you both and your daughters on a birthday treat is such a big deal, sounds like she is very overbearing.
I wonder how much friction that has caused in your relationship. We don’t choose our in-laws, they may or may not be the kind of people we would choose as friends. Most of us manage to be kind and pleasant even if they aren’t really our cup of tea. However that’s probably helped by the fact that most of us don’t see our in-laws that much so the odd Sunday lunch and holiday visit is manageable.
How involved is you Mum I’m your family’s day to say life? What was she like after your babies were born?
If she is overbearing and she and DH dislike one another, can you imagine what it’s like for him having to share family events with her?
My grandparents didn’t come on our birthdays, we saw them regularly and loved them and were loved by them. Grandma came and stayed for Christmas. This was mum’s Mum, dad’s Mum died before he married Mum.
Can you recall how their emnity started?

twinmummyyeah · 05/11/2018 09:25

I think the added layer of guilt For me comes from The fact that's my mum lives on her own as my dad died when I was 18 although they were mid divorce at the time.
I can understand your grandparents didn't see you on your birthdays and I guess that should be ok but do you think if they didn't have each other and they were home alone you would feel more responsible for including them? Sometimes I just feel like pulling a duvet over my head as I'm just trying to make my daughters happy and I have demands from other people like my husband and mother and I never end up thinking how I feel in all this! The girls birthday feels tarred now as I can't satisfy everyone and I'll end up feeling bad rather than enjoying precious moments like my daughters birthday which I think is important to treasure!

OP posts:
WithAFaeryHandInHand · 05/11/2018 09:30

I think your mum does sound a little overbearing if I’m honest.

My mum is dead and no, my dad would never consider it his right to see my dcs, birthday or no.

Luckily he and dh get on like a house on fire, so it’s not an issue and we don’t see him that often.

What helps is that my dad still works and has a new partner. Maybe if he didn’t work and was totally on his own... don’t know. But the new partner is relatively new and he hasn’t really changed since they got together.

WithAFaeryHandInHand · 05/11/2018 09:31

What’s going on with your marriage though? You say it’s crumbling.

Allthewaves · 05/11/2018 09:34

Never ever moan to parents about partner. While you forgive and forget, they will hold onto it

DonkeysDontRideBicycles · 05/11/2018 09:35

Don't stress yourself by hurrying round before even catching the train. Your mum can see you and the girls the day after with lots to catch up on.
Your mum knows her hostility with your husband causes an atmosphere so on your daughters' birthday it would be nice to step back not moan about being excluded.
I've been sharing his unreasonable behaviour with my mum which has made her hatred worse understandably
Oh that will have fuelled the fire, no question.

Sleephead1 · 05/11/2018 09:39

see I think the total opposite all my family sees each other on our birthdays. My parents would be gutted if they couldn't see my little boy on his birthday. You say this is your husbands fault and your marriage is crumbling are you thinking of splitting with him ? in the circumstances I think it's probably is too awkward for the day out so I would do something separate with your mum

Notjustanyone · 05/11/2018 09:43

Surely as the dc's said they don't want to see granny then that's the end of it. Send them round the next day and tell your mother to stop guilt tripping you as you have enough on your plate as well she knows!!!

greendale17 · 05/11/2018 09:44

My DS always sees his Grandparents on his birthdays, why wouldn’t he?

Sounds like a tough situation OP

greendale17 · 05/11/2018 09:45

I've been sharing his unreasonable behaviour with my mum which has made her hatred worse understandably

^You do realise you really aren’t helping matters here?

RiverTam · 05/11/2018 09:47

so your DD is learning to step around her father's bad temper and avoid creating situations that he won't like.

That is not healthy.

If your marriage is on the rocks and your DD would like her granny there then take granny and leave your husband, for ever, if you like.

as for the GPs have no right to spend birthdays with their GC, just remember that when it's your turn. Your parents don't stop being your family just because you've now got children of your own.

Blanchedupetitpois · 05/11/2018 09:53

You’ve sort of made a rod for your back by sharing your marriage troubles with your mum, though I can see why you would do that.

Mum doesn’t have a right to see them, so tell her she can have them the day before or after for a treat.

WithAFaeryHandInHand · 05/11/2018 10:06


You make a fair point, but yeah... I don’t think it would bother me not to see family on their birthdays. We don’t do that in ours. Nor does dh’s family. We’re spread all over the place though, so maybe that’s why. We’ve always moved around a lot in my family too, so we just don’t have this sort of relationship where everyone gets together for every birthday. We do see family at Christmas though. I’d definitely understand more if it was a choice between leaving granny alone for Christmas and annoying husband who the op might be splitting from anyway..? That’s a no brainer.

The op still hasn’t clarified what’s going on with her dh. Whatever way you look at it (evil dh / overbearing gran) that’s clearly the more pressing problem.

diddl · 05/11/2018 10:09

Your mum sounds like hard work, although if your husband is 90% to blame for the falling out I'm not sure how much pandering I'd be doing to him either!

Why did you ask him first & not your mum?

Missingstreetlife · 05/11/2018 10:10

Would your kids prefer to see granny than take dad? Surely you've bought the tickets now. Your mum is being a pain, it's not her birthday. Just say no, you'll see her the day after

CaledonianQueen · 05/11/2018 10:12

I think it’s ridiculous that your DH and DM are that uncivil, that your two young daughters are saying that they don’t want their Grandma to come because it will put Daddy in a bad mood! (Which infers that your dd’s would like their Grandma with them!) When I had contact with my in-laws, despite a history of awful behaviour on their part, I put on a smile, was friendly and encouraged a good relationship with my dc. Unfortunately things later snowballed but even after cutting contact, I made sure to tell my dc that my in-laws love them very much and that our fall out was not in any way their fault.

I am wondering if your DH is emotionally abusive? It sounds like your DD’s are walking on eggshells and desperately trying to please your DH. If he is abusive and this is why your DM has fallen out with him, then I think you need to ask yourself whether you would want your DD’s to be treated the way their Father treats you. Unfortunately, having an emotionally abusive DF makes it more likely that a girl will grow up and choose similarly abusive partners.

Is your DM overbearing? Is she controlling over you? Or is she just being overprotective over her daughter and granddaughters? Either way, your marriage does not sound a happy one, unless I am misreading your posts. Apologies if I am!

Two books that might help are;

‘Why does he do that?’ By Lundy Bancroft or
‘Toxic Parents’ by Susan Forward

It is hard to know what advice to give without more knowledge of the relationships you have with both your DH and your DM.

BooEekCackle · 05/11/2018 10:17

Go find a friend to blow hot air off WRT your DH. Your marriage doesn't need your mother hammering the final nail into it.


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Stuckforthefourthtime · 05/11/2018 10:19

It sounds like your DD wants her father there and not her grandma.

The rest is a separate issue to work out - either whether your DH is unpleasant or in fact abusive or your mother is overbearing or both. It sounds like your dc are getting caught in the crossfire, which shows that it's urgent to sort.

junebirthdaygirl · 05/11/2018 11:03

Your dm is being ridiculous. I have a gd7 and whether l see her on her birthday is up to her dps. If they heading off with her fine if not l pop around. Or l might be away. I will then see her with presents as soon as possible. The more fun days she has the better.
Your dm is causing unnecessary drama here and l hope that is not the cause of strife in your marriage. Your own family comes first.

Jenny70 · 05/11/2018 11:22

It is sad that the girls know that DH has more hate for their Granny (and possibly vice versa) than his love for them. If he did love them more than he hated his MIL, then he wouldn't have poisoned the relationship to the point the girls know that Granny and Dad can't be together, not even to celebrate their birthday in a public place.

The girls have expressed a wish for no Granny, so respect that. Make it a family day and organise what the girls can do with your mother on another day. Be direct, that day is taken up with this family trip, so what other day/time works for her.

If girls had wanted Granny to come, then DH should suck it up and be polite for the sake of the girls. And he should set aside his feelings for your mother and not react/speak ill of her, as she is an important person in the girls' lives. He doesn't need to befriend, but he needs to be polite.

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