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Should I leave it be or should I say something? (long - sorry)

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
As most of you know by now I am expecting my 1st child. I am due in 3 weeks. I am feeling very unsupported by my parents and I don't know what if anything I should say. Let me give you a little background.

I am the 2nd of 2 daughters. I was married 1st and from the time I was married my mother has been pushing me to have a baby (I have been married for over 8 years). We decided to wait and then about 5 years ago we started to try. We found out we had fertility issues and finally we are now pregnant.

Since that time, my sister has married (an older man who actually never wanted kids) and has had 2 little girls (currently 2 and 1/2 and 15 months). My mother used to live 5 minutes from me, but a year and 1/2 ago she moved to be nearer to my sister (about 1.5 hours away from me). My mother has quit her job to take care of my sisters kids. She did this even though my sister's husband had been unemployed for the past year (just started a new job). My sister pays her no money and my mom even buys all of the diapers the girls use at her house. My sister is over for dinner at least 2 to 3 nights per week and often even sleeps over.

Since I have been pregnant, my mother has shown little to no interest. Every time I try to talk to her about the baby, the pregnancy or how I am feeling she changes the subject to my sister and her kids. My sister has always been the favourite, even growing up. I already know that I will be lucky if my mom comes to see the baby before the weekend if I have him on a weekday.

The thing that has most recently bothered me is that I have been very sick. I called her when i became ill and said how sick I was. She did not call and check on me for 4 days. Then when she called, she was suprised I was still ill, but quickly changed the subject to how my neice was running a slight fever. I told her that the doctor was very worried about me. After that call I didn't hear from her again until 3 days after that. It was like she didn't even care how sick I was. My mother in law (who is very ill and in the hospital) was calling me from the emerency room to see if there was anything she could do for me.

Am I right to be angry? Should I say something? I know that if I need her (lets say I have a c-section) my husband and I will be on our own as she will have to stay with my neices. Why does this hurt me so much? It is really upsetting to the point I think about it at night and it is making sleep even more difficult. A large portion of this is my sister being so needy and demanding, but my mother chooses to let her. There will be no way that my child will have the same type of relationship with his grandmother that my neices do.
post #2 of 14

I deal with this issue with my own mother. I have learned over time that she is actually toxic to me, and lately I have just decided that not having anything to do with her is the best way to proceed. It is amusing to me how others view her. They look on her in some sort of awe- but because I am the holder of the dirty little secrets that exist in every family, I think it is easier for her to not acknowledge me. Because if she did, she would have to ask herself some tough questions, that I do not believe she is strong enough to answer.

Just because you can get pregnant (and I am in NO WAY talking about you) but more about the older generation of "mothers" when birth control wasn't even an option. Does not make you a parent. My mother has her favorite as well, and I just shake my head in amazement at what this favorite daughter can get away with from both of my parents.

I would not look to your mother to supply you with anything, because apparently she is not capable of it. Just embrace the new life within you, and know that when this little one finally does make an appearance, then this baby will have a much different and better life than you did.
post #3 of 14
I'd be hurt. Have you ever told your mom that you feel left out or in 'second' place? Does she view you as a strong and together person, so therefore not as needy as your sister?

I'd tell her my feelings in as calm a way as possible. Just point out the facts like you did here. Tell her that it bothers you and you lay awake at night thinking about all this. Tell her you need her love and support too.

Does she favor one of her grandchildren over the other? If not, ask her how would she feel if you did for one of the grandchildren, but not for the other. Bought one presents and spent lots of time with her, while ignoring the other child.

Would that upset her? Would she feel that it was wrong? Then, that is how you feel.
post #4 of 14
What an unhappy situation to be in. I'm sorry. I wish I could say, "Here's what you should do," but I really don't know. I guess if it were me I would ask myself honestly what the purpose of saying something would be and whether my expectations were realistic based on what I know. By speaking to your mother, do you hope to change her behavior? Do you think it could change her behavior? If so, then what do you have to lose by saying something. But if not, then ask yourself if you will feel worse or better afterwards. Will it make you feel better to get it off your chest? Then maybe it's worth it. Or will you just be even more unhappy because you said something and your mother didn't listen? Then what's the point. And is she likely to be upset if you say something, and could that make the situation even worse?

The reason I can't give you any better advice than that is because, well, I don't know your mother or your history with her. Only you know that. But when I'm in situations like this I always ask myself what saying something will do and whether I'm willing to deal with any possible bad consequences (assuming I'm thinking about it ahead of time and not just suddenly blurting something out because I'm upset). And you have to be completely honest with yourself too about your feelings and your history with your mother. If you're holding back just because you're afraid, but deep in your heart you think that perhaps saying something would do you some good, in some way, you have to really think about that.

Again, I'm sorry you're in this position. Family can be so complicated. Whatever you decide, I hope you can get some peace about it.
post #5 of 14
is to distance yourself from your mom. Right now you are going to have a baby and that should be the most important thing on your mind. After you have the baby , I would sit down with your mom and tell her all that you feel, if this doesn't work, than just don't put so much interest in her and she may see that there is a problem . Congrats on the baby!!
post #6 of 14
My therapist has often told me that we do not owe our parents anything. What we give them should be given in an act of love, not because you feel you have to. My dad loves me, though he could never show it to me in words or in physicality...it hurts me. My psychiatrist once said in regards to my dad, "expecting your dad to hug you is like asking a mentally retarded child to do algebra...it can't be done." Keep in mind you will be surrounded by your husband and friends...at least we get to pick them. And even without a child, if lets say you could not concieve you and your husband are already of family. Try to turn your deep hurt into deep knowledge. I often say their are only a few things in life we can change, a baby's diaper, a flat tire, and ourselves. You can't change your mom, so for now think of all the positives you have in your life right now. Hang in there.
post #7 of 14
Not advice Adrienne just my best wishes to your relationships are going well... and congrats for your new Baby!
post #8 of 14
Sweetie,, You are going to have a BABY!!!! This is the most glorious thing in the world. I am so sorry that you are having to deal with painful issues other than indigestion, heartburn, and incontinence!!LOL!! My relationship with my mom is precipitious also. I want you to be able to feel better and worry about your little kiddo coming. I know you cant just push her out of your mind, because she is your mother. But,, do what you can to let things be. Give your mom the cold shoulder. Maybe when the baby comes she will surprise you. But if not,, wait until you are stable and comfortable with new mother hood, then speak to her. I wish I lived close to you because since you are going to be lacking in the family help dept. you need helpful friends to make it easier. I read baby talk magazine, and they suggest that you have friends who love you bunches volunteer to come over two or three evenings a week so that you can have the luxury to bathe and catch a few zzz's. Its a shame that your friends havent volunteered already! Make em step up,,lol!!!! DOnt do this by yourself,, u will enjoy motherhood more if you arent so stressed!!
post #9 of 14
Originally Posted by Mom of Franz
My dad loves me, though he could never show it to me in words or in physicality...it hurts me. My psychiatrist once said in regards to my dad, "expecting your dad to hug you is like asking a mentally retarded child to do algebra...it can't be done."
We have the same father apparently!

You do have a right to be angry, but it's up to you to decide whether saying anything will get you anywhere. I know that I personally will never lean on anyone but my husband should I get pregnant (erm, I'm not married or pregnant so I have a long ways to go on both counts)... I wouldn't want to depend on my parents or his parents. I'd appreciate their help and most likely take it, but other than that, I don't want anyone there when I have the baby and I want to be able to do it myself.

That being said... the only thing I can think of is saying to talk to your mother, but I'm not sure how much good it'll do. If you've tried that and nothing has happened, it might have to be something that you're just going to have to accept. I know you and your husband can do this fine, with or without her support... and while it would be nice to have it, you might have to focus on doing it without that.

Sorry but good luck with everything, including the delivery of your little one!
post #10 of 14
I will bet you were always the strong one everyone could depend on, who always came thru. I will also bet your mom is a little in awe of you. My parents and I are close, but I don't lean on them. My sister, leans so heavily on them, you wouldn't think she was married. Even tho her husband is home on permanent disability, mom used to put her son on the bus. Dad has been at their house every weekend for several hours helping her husband with some repairs, then my sister complains that she is spending every weekend taking care of mom! (Thats another thread: http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=41143)

If your mom is anything like my mom, you can sit down and have a thoughtful conversation with her. Let her know how you are feeling. She may be clueless.
post #11 of 14
Yes, I would be hurt and angry, too. I guess I would try sitting down with her (or even on the phone if you're not able to get together with her) and telling her how much it hurts your feelings that she plays favourites that way - as unbelievable as it seems, some people are just not very in touch with things, I think, and maybe she doesn't realise she's being so unfair and one-sided and hurting you so much. If she still will not stop doing it after you've talked to her, then I guess you just have to know that it's her loss, not being involved with you, and with her soon-to-be grandchild - she is the one missing out (my father has never had an interest in me, and in fact I have not even seen him now in years, and this is what I always tell myself, so I know it's easier said than really felt, and that it will still hurt, but it *is* true).
post #12 of 14
What is it with people having kids but not liking them or showing them love? I don't get it....

I have two wonderful parents who love me, my siblings and the grandchildren equally. I've never had to feel jealous over anyone in my family because of my parents' behaviour. And I think it's terrible that any of you have to!
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the advice. I have to sit down and think what is best for me to do. I had a great childhood (and I even told my parents that and thanked them for that on New Year's day), but childhood was a long time ago.
post #14 of 14
Things change as you just made that point in your above post. I once had a special relationship with my father until my mother was remarried last year (makes no sense since he has been married to my stepmother for 18 years).

Anyway--do embrace the healthy relationships that you have with your husband and your mother-in-law, especially. She will obviously love the baby like you would want your mother too. IMO, I would tell your mother that you want her to be apart of the baby's life, and that you are hurt that you felt that she wasn't being there for you for your pregnancy. Ask her for support and if she gives--wonderful! If not, she made that choice, and you can't change what she does. Good luck...your son has a great mother already!
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