I remember a few months ago telling someone that I was really surprised at how hands-off my mother had been with parenting advice since Charlotte was born. My in laws had no shortage of advice to offer (whiskey on her gums for teething, sugar on her pacifier for hiccups, cereal in her bottle to fill her up, let her CIO…), but my own mother had been surprisingly quiet.
Do you see what I did there? With the past tense? HAD BEEN quiet. My mother WAS keeping her mouth shut.
Until… well, until she wasn’t, I guess. Which is now. Now, she’s keeping pace with the in laws.
The thing is that my mother is well meaning. As are my in laws. They are all driving me batshit crazy, but the trouble is that my mom actually has possession of Charlotte one day a week, and on that day, she does as she pleases.
She was playing a game with C that she called “boom” where she pulled C up by her arms and then repeatedly allowed her to fall back onto a pile of pillows. Fine for an older baby. Maybe not so great for a 3 month old. Catch saw it in action and didn’t like it. I asked her to please not play the game anymore. What followed was two weeks of arguing about it until C came home from her house one day and only woke up to eat and I freaked my mother out about shaken baby syndrome. They don’t play boom anymore.
Then there’s the stroller. I have asked my mom to use the infant seat with the stroller until C is 6 months old. That is the recommendation on the stroller. That’s what I’m comfortable with. Is she doing it? No. When I made an issue out of it, she argued with me and told me she’d done all of her own research and that everything she read says it’s subjective and it’s fine for C to be in the stroller.
And yes. This is true. I did the research too. BUT I ASKED HER NOT TO DO IT. Why is it so hard to respect my wishes? We finally got into a big fight about it right before Christmas and she said she’s using her grandparent rights to override me. Um, excuse me? What now? Gah!
Now, I’ve mentioned to her that we’re going to use BLW techniques when we introduce C to solids. Mom was totally on board and said it sounds great. She went to lunch with Catch and C today and insisted on giving C a piece of bread. Catch told her no and she argued with her.
Then they went high chair shopping and mom told Catch she couldn’t get the one she likes because it doesn’t match our dining room furniture.
Mom is not winning any points for herself lately. Granted, Catch’s parents aren’t either (on Christmas, my MIL was wearing a sweater with handguns all over it and there was a gun catalog on the coffee table – don’t even get me started), but Catch’s parents don’t have my baby one day a week.
Anyway, I have no idea how to handle these well meaning grandparents. I’m tempted to buy my mom a muzzle as a not-so-subtle hint that she needs to shut her pie hole, but I don’t think it would go over particularly well. The thing is that none of these things are the end of the world. Well, boom was truly objectionable, but the rest of it–meh. The kid’ll be fine. A piece of bread isn’t going to kill her. But it’s the PRINCIPLE. We are the moms, not her. She already got to be the mom and call the shots. It’s my turn now.
Vent over. We’ll talk about the in laws another day.
Cute baby picture reward for making it this far: