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Need Advice (Don't Laugh)

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I need some advice about a family problem that has been going on for years. The cause of the problem is the fact that I have owned several cats over the years and I have been very happy with my cats. Every time my parents come over they complain about the current cat's behavior, especially my mother. She has always told me my cats are out of control, and everything is being ruined by the cat because it isn't declawed. If my mother is approached by a cat, she puts the palm of her hand out toward the cat and acts like she is about to be attacked. She nags me that Snowball is overweight, I can easily feel his ribs and he is about right and I have told her this. If a cat jumps anywhere near my mother, she screams. She also gives me cat care tips that don't ever work. I have tried to explain some things about cat behavior several times while my parents were visiting. It hasn't done any good.

It just keeps going on and on like this. Normally, I don't pay much attention to any of this because I am an adult and I do what I want, not what someone else wants. After so many years, all this tension is finally getting to me. I can't discuss the fact that I am getting very upset over this with my parents because they won't listen. I'm not sure what else I should do.
post #2 of 16
Lorie, Is it possible that you are the youngest in the family? I am. I discovered that, regardless of IQ, experience, honors, education, or age, the rest of the family always thinks they have to tell the youngest everything about everything--"for their own good." My mother did this-- mostly about my children, which is worse! I finally blew my top and told her I would raise my children as I saw fit, without interference. She left and I felt a huge weight lift from my shoulders--instead of the terrible guilt I expected. I'm the mother now, and I don't interfere. I'm sorry I had to lose it in front of my mother, because she's in heaven now, but under the same circumstances, I'm afraid I might do the same thing. We made up, and she slowed the criticism a bit.
post #3 of 16
My mother decided awhile ago that coming up here for a visit is a bad idea because I have to many animals. The last time she did come up, she presented me with this beautiful knitted afgan and she put it on the top of the dresser. It hadn't even been put down very long when Smudge my calico jumped up and made it her bed. I had the camera in hand and took a picture, and my god, my mother's face, if looks could kill that cat would be dead. LOL Another year, she sent ahead a wall hanging she had made, it was needlepunched, cat's on a wall and their tail spells out LOVE. In the note my mother said "Hang this immediately on the wall DO NOT let your cat's sleep on it!" Well guess where it is? Not on the wall.......I am such a brat.

But bottom line, you mother does not like cats Lorie, so the best thing to do is to put your cats in another room while your mother is there. I know that is unfair because it is after all their home too, but she is your mother and well, there is some sort of respect that goes along with the title (usually)
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Originally posted by Hissy
Another year, she sent ahead a wall hanging she had made, it was needlepunched, cat's on a wall and their tail spells out LOVE. In the note my mother said "Hang this immediately on the wall DO NOT let your cat's sleep on it!"
That sounds exactly like something my mother would do. Hissy, I'll try the advice you and Vikki both gave and keep Snowball out of sight the next time my parents visit. Hopefully, it will help.
Thanks guys!
post #5 of 16
Families feel the need to tell the only child what to do, too. I always thought it would be easier to have a brother or sister to take off some of the pressure, but I'm not sure. Luckily, my mom loves the cats and thinks they're adorable. I know I get my animal loving traits from her. Except for horses, she's terrified of them, my dad is the one who made me a sucker for them.

Lorie, I think the suggestion to keep the cats away is a good one. Or maybe meet on neutral ground like a restaurant everyone enjoys.

It's so hard to be seen as an adult by one's family, I think it almost always ends in a fight or loud scene. They just don't want to let go of their babies.
post #6 of 16
Why do I live 1200 miles away from my mother?

Answer: See Lorie's post......my mother is like this about EVERYTHING!
post #7 of 16
Boy, did I get lucky - MY mom just tries to steal my knickknacks and shoes!
post #8 of 16
Sometimes being rude might help. We had to do it with the mother-in-law. She was just TOO MUCH! We told her straight that if she can't say nice words when she comes here, then she better not come. That worked, she hasn't been here ever since!
I reckon that since this is OUR home, we do as we please, no-one has a right to come and tell us how we are supposed to do things.

I presume your mom doesn't have cats, so how about telling her you know a bit more about cats than she does?
post #9 of 16
Lorie... I feel bad that your mom has to act this way. Hissy is right, try to put the cats in another room when your mom comes, if you can, but if not...just tell her that you don't want to hear any complaining about them, because they are your pets, and you love them.

My mother-in-law sent home a loaf of homemade bread with hubby....it was in a large ziploc bag. We put it on the counter.
In the middle of the night, hubby woke up to find that Merlin had jumped on the counter, knocked the bag off, and had drug it into the living room where he was playing with and chewing on it.

We thought it was kinda funny actually....he hadn't been able to get the bread out...but there were puncture marks all over the bag from his claws....he sure had tried like heck.... :laughing:

But we made the mistake of telling his mother about it, and she didn't find it amusing at all. She said she would never send over any homemade bread ever again, because she didn't make it for the cat to tear apart.

Oh well.
post #10 of 16
I'm lucky that I don't have any problems with my parents or my mother-in-law when they come over. My mother-in-law has cats and dogs, so she gives them good rubs when she comes over and she talks kitty talk to them. My dad isn't really fond of cats, but he tolerates them when he comes over. And my mom has always said that she hates cats, but mine are an exception to that. She loves petting them when she comes to visit.
post #11 of 16
Reading some of these stories, I feel really blessed that my dad loves cats, and especially loves Ivo. When he comes to visit, he likes to spend "quality time" playing and petting with her. I do have several friends that dislike cats, but I've made it plainly clear that if they come over to my home, at the minimum they have to treat Ivo decently. Anywhere else, they are free to say what they think.
post #12 of 16
And found this. If you look in the mirror you can see how not pleased my mother was.LOL I get my fierce love of animals from my daddy!
post #13 of 16
She reminds me of my first mother-in-law. That one had the nerve to come into MY house and tell me what I was supposed to cook and how to decorate. When Richard was born, she was worse. She wanted me to put a bellyband on him. Those things went out, 50+ years ago. (For the younger set: people used to put a constrictive band, around newborns' waists, to hold their bellybuttons in.)
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hissy, I love that picture, the look on your mother's face is priceless!
post #15 of 16
Hissy!!! :LOL: She does NOT look happy there!!! What a great picture!!!! :LOL:
post #16 of 16
I can provide exactly no help. My mom says she will disown/disinherit me if I ever get another cat. I always come back with "promises, promises" or "disinherit - the whole $1.57".
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