3rd Trimester

Vent: my parents (SORRY, LONG!)

So my parents invite us to burritos at my sister's restaurant, and after some light persuasion I'm able to get my poor headachy, box-lifting-all-day husband to agree to go. He's already put on jammies and is not interested in hanging out with my parents at that time (I AGREE!), but the lure of burritos is strong, indeed, so we go... husband still in jammies.

We get there, order, and Oh! there's Leslie who used to live across the street from me you in high school, isn't she so beautiful and accomplished, come on let's introduce your husband (in jammies!) to her and her husband, you got married the same day isn't that funny! BTDUBS wow, you're pregnant! omg you only have a month left, that's so soon... blah blah...

Glad that's over! Burrito time!

We have a lovely conversation about not baby related things, then I make the mistake of inviting them to the shower an old (admittedly crazy) friend is throwing at a bar a couple towns over this weekend. I do not do this because I want them to come, or think they want to come, but because I am being polite and do not want them to feel like I am intentionally leaving them out. My dad takes this opportunity prod me about the OTHER baby shower that my MIL was going to have which fell through because her mother had to have surgery and stay in the hospital OOT for weeks and to tell me he hates my crazy friend, and is angry at her for mysterious reasons... something about how she behaved or something she said at our wedding. She was a bridesmaid, and I thought she had been on particularly good behavior that day. Anyway.

Next my mother tells us we are unprepared to have this baby, esp since we have neglected to attend labor classes and "need to make some decisions" about my labor. When pressed about what decisions we still need to make, she gives vague and mystical allusions to "important decisions." Pressed further she gives examples like:

  • whether we are going to circ (we're not)
  • who I want in the room to advocate for me because I will be in no condition to understand what's going on around me or make any decisions about my welfare while I'm laboring (DH comes from a family of nurses and DRs and is the only one I want there, and assuming I'll be an incompetent, helpless, slob is demeaning!) And the DRs might just GIVE ME PAIN MEDICINE I DON'T WANT (I do want!) and you know... stuff...
  • "Do you even know how to get to the hospital??"  Indifferent
  • "Have you READ a BOOK about childbirth?" She then has the nerve to suggest at least going on the internet and looking it up. (OOOh! The INTERNET! why didn't I think of that?)

She is prejudiced against hospitals and had natural births at birth clinics, is disappointed in me for planning on an epi, wants us to circ, and is overdoing the mother-guilt, b/c hers wasn't around when she had her children and she wished she could have been. And she clearly doesn't think my husband or I have prepared for having a child or have any INTEREST in preparing for OUR child. I am 35 weeks pregnant. My husband works at BRU for godsake! To believe we haven't thought about baby things or read up on them is absurd and insulting. Like she thinks we don't care about our child and doesn't trust us to care for him properly. Maybe she thinks we're "young," but at 24, we're 3 years older than she was when she had me!

So I answered her questions and maybe I got a little defensive. ("Why are you being so defensive!?") And my husband was a jewel and held his temper and tongue. And my parents got angry at US and stormed out of the restaurant. Husband went to the restroom, then also stormed out of the restaurant and spent a while punching his steering wheel. I've never seen him so angry. Ever.

No, we haven't had time to go to a 6-wk cycle of birth classes and we didn't want to, anyway. DH works and is in school, I'm working odd hours and we have no time or money, but we were feeling confident about everything that it would work out and we'd get through the birth, and then get the opportunity to be the best parents ever because we love and understand each other and have an enormous amount of respect for how a person feels and what they think and would listen to a child and help them grow in a nurturing, loving, explorative, honest environment.

I grew up in a house of bickering and control. Everyone in each other?s business all the time, and not in a good way. DH did NOT come from a similar environment and can't understand why my family acts the way they do or how they communicate. I love my MIL, she is a fantastic woman and everything I want to be as a mom, and am sad DH has to be the one with a crazy MIL.

Oh, BTW we LIVE with my parents right now. We do not feel comfortable having a baby there. We feel like my mother will want to take him b/c she doesn't understand she is his GRANDMA and not his MOM.

So we drove around for a couple of hours until he cooled off and I stopped crying. And we agree that they're nuts and we're STILL going to be excellent parents, and are not going to let naysayers shake our confidence. Because I AM VERY SCARED about L&D but what I need to get through this is to be calm and united with my husband.

MORAL OF THE STORY: burritos are not worth feeling like incompetant parents.

Re: Vent: my parents (SORRY, LONG!)

  • Wow that is intense! Generally I would say (which I have learned since being pregnant) to just let people talk and nod in agreement but ultimately stick to your guns because EVERYONE has an unwarranted opinion when it comes to what YOU are going to do concerning YOUR child. However, considering this is your mom and someone you are currently living with it is going to be difficult, very difficult it seems to tune her out. I am sure intentions are well meant but that is really overstepping a bit as you are an adult and this is you and your DH's child. I guess you are just going to have to deal, as much as that sucks. Just worry about you and yours and don't let others words and actions affect you and yours. Sorry you are going through this!
  • I agree that was very intense and something neither of you needed.  Don't worry, my DH and I haven't had any experience with children. We are in kind of the same situation, we didn't take childbirth classes because of schedules and money but have been doing research on our own.  Just the fact that you worry about being a good parent means that you will be, my hubby keeps telling me that bad parents don't care either way.  I too am getting really sick of unwarranted advice and it hard to shake off, especially coming from parents.  And I'm very scared about L&D too, but you're right about being united with your husband.  If you two stick together and remember you're on the same side you can do anything, that's what I keep telling myself.

    Hang in there and just remember that it's all worth it in the end to hold that precious baby. 

  • Tough stuff, especially since you live with your parents!  People often become overbearing once babies arrive, so unfortunately your parents might swoop in more when the baby arrives and try to be more controlling.  My IL's gave us no personal space at all when our DD was born and otherwise we never saw them - and they ignore us now (2 years later). 

    I guess try to just let most of it go over your head when you can, but it is your child and you will have to stand up for what you believe in.

  • Thanks, guys- I needed to get that out of my system... Shower and lunchtime are for happymaking!

    I've gotten pretty good about ignoring my mother over the years... but it just seems to make her nag MORE!! Wink

    "I can do it!" is the mantra. I think everyone here will be the best mom ever.

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