To ask for your opinion on parents of multiples?
NaviSprite · 20/11/2019 16:41
I have been often accused as being a deliberate martyr since I had my DC, twins, boy and girl.
This has been the consensus of my old friends who had children earlier than I did and who are parents of NT healthy singletons.
I’m a bit perplexed where it came from as I didn’t have any opportunities to be ‘that’ mother who constantly bemoans that two is far more difficult than one or any other such cliches - I was phased out of my friendship group when my twins were born and shipped off to a hospital miles away to spend 4 months in NICU. The hospital they were taken to were very kind and offered me one of their transitional care rooms as a place to stay indefinitely whilst DD and DS were staying there.
Because of this I didn’t do what my then friends considered the norm, I didn’t invite them to ‘come and meet the babies’. I was constantly having to turn down invitations to meet up for a coffee because I was away from the county my friends were based in. I stopped hearing from them after a while but didn’t think much of it at the time because my headspace was completely overtaken by the NICU experience and the daily worry that I would get a knock on the door to my room, to tell me that one, or both hadn’t made it through the night.
Thankfully this never came to pass and I know how extremely lucky I am to have them both at home and they’ve just celebrated their 2 year birthday.
The people I had lost have completely removed me from and and all forms of contact until recently.
I received a message two days ago from one of the group, saying that they didn’t feel I was putting in enough effort to continue the friendship so they had decided to call it a day. But now my twins are older, we could try to reconnect if I was over being a “mummy martyr”.
I haven’t responded, but it has left me wondering, is that how parents in my position are viewed as a general experience? I am limited to where I can go or when as I am a SAHM to the twins (financial reasons rather than personal preference choice). They are quite delayed in development due to having been so premature and low weight at birth, so aren’t able to do what most of their peers are capable of, so we have to stick to more appropriate activities for them. DD was on home oxygen and CPAP equipment for the first year of her life which meant going out was only done when it was completely necessary.
I am trying to see how I may have come across as a martyr as part of me is desperate to have some of my old social circle back - I miss them. But I can’t help but feel they’re being rather harsh with me.
I’ve enabled voting (I think!) so:
YABU - Your friends were probably fed up of you not making time for them and right to carry on without you for a while, take the olive branch.
YANBU - Circumstances considered I think they were harsh and I would question the relevance of the friendship as it’s been two years since they phased you out.
Am I being unreasonable?AIBU
You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.
Spudlet · 20/11/2019 16:47
Hmmm. I have two words to offer your ‘friends’. The second of them would be ‘off’.
Ok, you didn’t keep up with the friendship - for good reason. You had two unwell little babies to care for - needing hospital treatment and ongoing care, above and beyond the general needs that all babies have. To describe you as a ‘mummy martyr’ after that is almost unbelievably bitchy. I can understand the group carrying on without you - that’s fair enough. But that message sounds as though they think you should be crawling, and grateful that they’ve deigned to offer you the chance to do so.
These people aren’t worth your time, op.
Orangeblossom78 · 20/11/2019 16:50
I think that is an incredibly rude thing to say 'mummy martyr' given what you have been through. Some empathy would not go amiss. Either they are pretty stupid / wrapped up in their own world and simply do not understand (and you may be able to forgive that) or just may be simply unpleasant- maybe you know them better as to understand which it is.
NaviSprite · 20/11/2019 16:53
I had thought that but I wasn’t sure as I know I’ve been in a bit of a bubble since bringing the twins home and thought they might have expected me to have made the effort of getting in touch with them - I didn’t so perhaps it lead to offence.
The person in question was a friend I met in nursery and it’s true she was going through a rough patch whilst I was out of touch, but our mutual friends rallied around her - I didn’t think my lack of presence (given my circumstances) would be taken so badly.
My DH is angry about it all and tells me to just forget them, problem is I don’t really have any friends left now and it’s rather isolating, but I don’t want that to be the reason for reconnecting with people who have seemingly no empathy for me.
I was previously a serial ‘people pleaser’ and only since having my DC have I been knocking that habit on the head, but it has resurfaced since the message, which was so out of the blue and one sided - it’s wobbled me a bit (if that makes any sense!).
Trillis · 20/11/2019 16:57
You are certainly not unreasonable, and it sounds like they have no empathy or understanding of what you went through. I would think very carefully about whether they were people that I wanted back in my life.
Did they understand the seriousness of your DCs situations? If you are sure that they did, I would ignore the olive branch and leave them to it. If they didn't realise just how ill your DC were, then you could choose to tell them and see how they respond. But anyone who phases out a friend because that friend's children are very ill doesn't sound like a friend at all.
NaviSprite · 20/11/2019 16:58
Unfortunately there aren’t any twins in the local groups and in the area I live in, the cliques were formed a while before my DC were well enough to attend the groups. Their paediatrician decided to defer their jabs by months because of their health, they’ve only just fully caught up and I didn’t want to take them into groups where they could get sick or make any of the other children sick having not been immunised at the usual ages.
TheVanguardSix · 20/11/2019 16:59
What terrible, terrible, terrible people.
My life. I am flabbergasted. Who ARE these people?
You've been in the trenches, OP.
I'd send them a message along the lines of what you wrote here on MN. Give these emotionally blind fools some sight so they can perhaps attempt to imagine what you've been through.
You miss them because you miss friends. These are not friends but demanding, spoiled, high maintenance assholes sorely lacking in empathy.
I'm so sorry that your introduction to motherhood has been difficult. You need empathetic, loving, patient friends who take you as they find you. There are loads of lovely people out there. I find your so-called friends' outlook totally abnormal. What lagoon did you find them floating in?
Florencenotflo · 20/11/2019 17:01
When our friends twins were born at 26+4 we helped. We made a rota so that she had company every day even if it was just an hour, her DH went back to work after he had taken his paternity leave and as much annual leave as he could. We cooked meals and left them at the house for them to eat, did shopping for them, did housework for them. Supported them.
I'd tell your 'friend' to get fucked 😂 but that may be too harsh. You weren't being a martyr you had 2 sick babies.
NaviSprite · 20/11/2019 17:01
@Trillis they knew, I didn’t go into huge detail as I didn’t want to admit out loud just how scared I was for them, the woman I’d known the longest did come for one visit to the NICU and saw for herself how tiny and vulnerable they were, she saw them with their various medical apparatus attached and only commented that I was “handling it better than she would if her baby had been like that”. Truth is I was in survival mode, emotionally shut down and just wanted to get through each day as calmly as logically as I could muster. The emotion was only let out when I was in my room at night.
clareykb · 20/11/2019 17:04
Hello I'm you 4 years down the line with premature twins, long nicu journey and general delay. It does get easier but people honestly don't get how hard it is early on. My friends were lovely but I did have a few people go on about me being overprotective of them when I didn't want to take my teeny baby who had just recovered from rsv out on the cold in December. They are being ridiculous. Go to a twins group and find some new friends!
NC4this123 · 20/11/2019 17:06
Aww no please don’t feel like that, you were just being a good mum. A lot of people don’t understand things they aren’t going through or have experienced themselves though! I’ve had similar issues with a friend where I’ve felt like I’m being so fussy and can tell she gets the ass when I’m picking certain places to meet due to young kids and worrying about having to run after them constantly, but if I didn’t do that, we wouldn’t be able to talk anyway! But having an older child it’s like she’s forgotten and also has never had 2! Sometimes at different stages in life your lives are just incompatible. If I were you, I’d go to some twin groups and meet some other, more understanding, mum friends!
NaviSprite · 20/11/2019 17:06
@TheVanguardSix thank you that made me laugh! I think it was friendships based on how long we’d known each other. It wasn’t always this awful and I’d often heard people say that you find out who your true friends are in times of crisis (or when you become a parent!) I think it was the double hit that kind of made me bury my head in the sand.
I’m always second guessing myself, I know I have a tendency to cut myself off when shit hits the fan and I just want to get through whatever the situation is... but this was not one of those times, I really wanted my friends, I needed them.
The silver lining to this at least was that I managed to reconnect with my Mother (entirely different thread) and she’s been more present and supportive than ever before as a result, but I miss having the level of interaction you get with friends. My DH’s friends have adopted me a bit but they’re so scattered we see them once in a blue moon
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