Ugh, another battle


#1

This past weekend was baby's baptism and my dad and step-mom graciously paid for the party. Two days after the party my dad called to ask if he and my step-mom can take dd (6) to the Rolex for 4 days (KY is 7 hours from where we live in IL and my dad would fly into town - he lives in MD - to drive dd down to KY). In September my dad wanted to take dd to the international competition there which said no to. So, to try to compromise a little (dd wants to go but doesn't want to be without her parents overnight) hubby agreed to drive down there with dd and attend for the first two days (we have things we HAVE to be at Saturday) and then the both drive home after the Friday events that way dd could go to some, spend time with my dad and step-mom, and have a parent with her (I have to work, I don't have any days for time off). Well, my dad and step-mom don't like the idea b/c the days dd would be there are dressage events (which my dad finds boring). I'm going to have to say "no" since he doesn't like this compromise, but again, I'll be the bad daughter. My dad wants to talk to dd about going without us (he thinks I'm the one saying she's not ready for an overnight without us out of state) but I know his speech can be quite forceful and without realizing you've committed yourself to something you don't want to do (it's taken me many years to get the courage to disagree and say "no" to him). I guess I'm looking for support. I feel as if this is the "string attached" to the baptism gift.:mad:


#2

Why do grandparents think they have a right to pick up the kids when they want?

My Inlaws, I know, are just itching to take the kids… NO WAY. Whenever they leave, as much as they clearly love our kids, we have at least a week of drama to correct. Tantrums, eating problems, sleep issues, refusal to clean up… The kids will probably be in double digits before I allow this…


#3

Expecting any 6yo to sit through any kind of competition is just asking for trouble. Last I heard Rolex was a watch, so I'm not sure exactly what kind of competition it is...still DD may want to go, but be board out of her mind 30 minutes in.

You tried to comprimise but it's not going to work. 1...it's short notice...2 it's getting into the holiday season and things are just crazy.

Maybe you can take a vacation down to your parents sometime and have you and hubby stay in a hotel and "date" or a night with the baby...and you won't be far...but a hotel stay with people she sees infrequently IS asking too much of a 6yo.


#4

[quote="purplesunshine, post:3, topic:220015"]
Expecting any 6yo to sit through any kind of competition is just asking for trouble. Last I heard Rolex was a watch, so I'm not sure exactly what kind of competition it is...still DD may want to go, but be board out of her mind 30 minutes in.

You tried to comprimise but it's not going to work. 1...it's short notice...2 it's getting into the holiday season and things are just crazy.

Maybe you can take a vacation down to your parents sometime and have you and hubby stay in a hotel and "date" or a night with the baby...and you won't be far...but a hotel stay with people she sees infrequently IS asking too much of a 6yo.

[/quote]

It's actually at the end of April (so there's plenty of notice) but the tickets need to be purchased this weekend before they sell out (so says my dad). I dread these conversations. I'm sure this will lead to another silent treatment on my dad's and step-mom's part. I wish our relationship could be different (or at least, they could see things through my dd's eyes on why she doesn't want to be away from her parents with grandparents she see 4 - 5 times per year)


#5

[quote="gmarie21, post:4, topic:220015"]
It's actually at the end of April (so there's plenty of notice) but the tickets need to be purchased this weekend before they sell out (so says my dad). I dread these conversations. I'm sure this will lead to another silent treatment on my dad's and step-mom's part. I wish our relationship could be different (or at least, they could see things through my dd's eyes on why she doesn't want to be away from her parents with grandparents she see 4 - 5 times per year)

[/quote]

(Regardless of when it is, you're being forced to make a decision NOW..that's alot of pressure)

One of the things you and hubby need to do is discuss "sleep-over" age, weither it be now, at 10 or at 18. Eventually DD WILL want to sleep over someone elses' house. The key to this issue right now is SHE dosn't want to sleep over as much as she loves her grandparents. There is no need, at 6, to force the issue. Now if she's 14 and refuses to sleepover anyone's house...that's a different story. I would tell your mom and step-dad that DD is just not willing to leave you overnight yet, though she is thrilled at the idea of going to spend time with them. And that overnights are one issue you will not force on her.

She's your child for life. Yours and your husbands. You are under no obligation to potentially traumitize her so you can appear to be unclingy.

At the same time you dad is your dad for life. You know this will turn into a manipulative angerfest. Keep your supports strong (your hubby and close friends), get the convo over with. Then go again to your supports, God, hubby, friends.


#6

[quote="gmarie21, post:1, topic:220015"]
This past weekend was baby's baptism and my dad and step-mom graciously paid for the party. Two days after the party my dad called to ask if he and my step-mom can take dd (6) to the Rolex for 4 days (KY is 7 hours from where we live in IL and my dad would fly into town - he lives in MD - to drive dd down to KY). In September my dad wanted to take dd to the international competition there which said no to. So, to try to compromise a little (dd wants to go but doesn't want to be without her parents overnight) hubby agreed to drive down there with dd and attend for the first two days (we have things we HAVE to be at Saturday) and then the both drive home after the Friday events that way dd could go to some, spend time with my dad and step-mom, and have a parent with her (I have to work, I don't have any days for time off). Well, my dad and step-mom don't like the idea b/c the days dd would be there are dressage events (which my dad finds boring). I'm going to have to say "no" since he doesn't like this compromise, but again, I'll be the bad daughter. My dad wants to talk to dd about going without us (he thinks I'm the one saying she's not ready for an overnight without us out of state) but I know his speech can be quite forceful and without realizing you've committed yourself to something you don't want to do (it's taken me many years to get the courage to disagree and say "no" to him). I guess I'm looking for support. I feel as if this is the "string attached" to the baptism gift.:mad:

[/quote]

That part bothers me. It's like saying, "I want to give you a pink unicorn, but mommy says no"

You are the mom, a 6 year old should not get outside pressure to do something you are against.


#7

but again, I'll be the bad daughter.

gmarie, you will NOT be the bad daughter, nor were you the bad daughter the last time, nor do any of these types of "demanding, self-centered dad" scenarios ever shine the light on you as bad daughter.

i dont like self-centered spoiled brats when they're 3, i dont like them when they're 13 and i like them even less when they're 63.

your compromise was a lovely, generous, blessed thing. if my adult kids offered to bring my grandkids to me to see ANY event for 2 days, i'd be happy watching GRASS GROW in their company.

phooey, gmarie. aaack phooey.

You are the mom, a 6 year old should not get outside pressure to do something you are against.

oh, yeah!!! we dont let our kids around manipulative, subversive folk like this. you're the gatekeeper, gmarie. keep the gate.


#8

[quote="gmarie21, post:1, topic:220015"]
...my dad wanted...

[/quote]

I'm flabbergasted. Your father is trying to push you around with your daughter at the center of it all? If I were your father I would be ashamed of myself. Instead, I would have proposed it in the form of a mere invitation, and I would have given you the freedom to say no. He was out of line, totally out of line.

You need to learn to say no to your father and mean it. That means not offering a compromise. It sounds like you have been offering him all sorts of compromises your whole life - and that means he knows he can get his way with you whenever he wants it, and it also explains how he got to the point where he thinks he can have his way with your six year old daughter.

There is a principle of law that if your neighbor begins to encroach on your property, and you don't do anything about it, the encroachment becomes your neighbor's property. The same principle is at work in countless other situations - the saying about letting a camel's nose into your tent, the story about a frog in a pot of boiling water, and so on - and it looks like somewhere along the way you have convinced yourself you need to negotiate with him and offer him compromises because you are afraid of displeasing him.

You need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Everyone here agrees that your father is out of line to make that demand on you, so take that as a given. Now when someone is out of line in asking you for something, what does a grown woman do? She says no. And don't you be the one to offer the compromise! Because you'd just be giving him what he wants anyway.

Your father's "place" in all of this is only to extend invitations, not to act like he owns your children and can bypass you to get the little girl to turn against you and say she wants to go even if you say no. And if you stick to your guns and refuse to give in and refuse to compromise, then he will have to learn his "place", and learn how to give invitations that you can say yes to without you being pushed around.

I had a friend once, Marie, who used to invite me out on nights when I had to work early the next morning. I felt sorry for him, I wanted to be nice, and so I said yes at first, but then it got to the point where when I had to say no he would chide me for being un-fun. Out of shame I compromised and said yes. Eventually I *couldn't *say no. All he had to do was tease me about it and he could get me to do anything. I gave in and compromised and gave in and compromised until he was in complete control of the relationship. Then he started asking if he could borrow money from me, $20 here and $50 there, and he always paid me back. Then it became $200 for the utility bills. Then I invited him to a music festival out of town and the tickets were $300 for the weekend. He kept saying he would pay me back. I kept telling myself that he earned the right to borrow money from me because he had been trustworthy with the little loans. Now, looking back on it all, I see that he was just softening me up so that I would loan him a big loan and he wouldn't have to pay it back at all, because I foolishly let him encroach on my trust. We are no longer friends.

Is this anything like you and your father?


#9

There should be no strings attached to the Baptism gift.

The parents are the most important people in their child's life, and you get to say what your children can or can't do. Be at peace about that.


#10

You are not a bad daughter; you are a good mother!


#11

This is the deal. Your dad needs to know that *he *has to work with *you *because *you *have what he wants, the grandchildren.

I had to put my foot down with my mother over several things before she realized that the tables had turned and I wasn't going to give in to her just because. She had to accept that because she figured I was crazy enough to not let her see her grandchildren if she didn't start accepting my terms.

It's not that she wanted anything bad, but she too wanted my children to visit for overnights with no parents at a young age and stuff like that.

It's really really hard, but your husband should help you out on that. My husband wrote a letter to my parents after they totally upset me at a time of great stress when I was pregnant, and then all I had to do was to follow through. I had to hang up on my mother when she tried to continue to argue. It was a mess, but just for a short while and then it was over.

Now that my oldest is grown, I see that we each have to make shifts in our relationship, and each new growth spurt will require change from me. I try not to be intrusive, and I also try to be accepting when she sets boundaries. It's a process for both of us.


#12

Not sure what the Rolex even is. But at the age of 6 and going out of state would make me uncomfortable. For one, with my own experience, what if she were to get sick or injured?
We traveled out of state once my husband and I and my oldest daughter got sick. We were at a conference at the time so we had our cell phone shut off. Well, when it was lunch time he turned the phone back on to find out my inlaws were in the hospital with my oldest at the ER and they HAD to get our permission to treat her.
I would honestly tell them, "No. not unless we can go as a family."

You can thank them for the gift of paying for the Baptism but you are under no obligation to be manipulated into thinking you have to do that because they paid for it. If they bring it up (throw it in your face), tell them that it was very nice of them to do it and that is considered a gift from them to your child." Has nothing to do with you.

You are the parent and are in charge. If she's not ready to go on a sleep over as well then don't push it. That has to be something that is done when she is ready and at their home. Not out of state. My daughters sleep over at their grandparents house all of the time as my husband's parents love them very much and think the world of them. There isn't anything they wouldn't do for their granddaughters. But they've never taken them out of state. Never. Nor would they ask to do such a thing unless I or my husband or both of us were with them as well.

I would thank them for the invitation but tell them that she is not ready for such an endeavor and she can do that sort of thing when she is older and can actually appreciate it.


#13

First off: The Rolex is a very large Equestrian Competion that occurs every year at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington.

Second: She is your daughter and you set the terms not your father or step-mother. If they do not like the terms you have set for them for taking her on this trip well then she can always go another year when she is older.
For me no one takes my dd anywhere unless they agree to my terms. After all it is my chlid and not theirs and I do know what is best. Thats my $0.02.


#14

Thank you everyone for the support. I have not heard back from them since this thread. Based on past experiences, I'll be surprised if I hear from them at all in the next few weeks (though we'll call to say "Happy Thanksgiving"). Maybe one holiday season can go by without drama or adult temper tantrums and silent treatments.


#15

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