dealing with unwanted advice/opinions-am I wrong? - FamilyEducation
dealing with unwanted advice/opinions-am I wrong?
12/18/2013 at 14:59 PM

We recently had a family dinner that happened to fall on the same day as our local Christmas parade. My mother asked if we were available at that time. I told her that the parade was at 7 and my kids had been looking forward to it for a long time (my daughter was in it.) She replied that it is the only night we could have it, we would have dinner at 5 so they could still go. As it turned out I was wrong about the time, it was at 6 and my daughter had to meet with her group at 5. I asked my mother if it would be possible to move it to 4, she replied with an indignant "nobody will be hungry by then because they will be having a late lunch" due to my nephews hockey tournament. My kids have never missed a family function and have missed their own hockey for the sake of a family function. I don't think this was an unreasonable request nor do I think I was wrong in not making them miss the parade. My mother called and talked to my daughter (12) and laid an "I am disappointed that you would choose the parade over your family" discussion on her, bringing her to tears. (She called it voicing her opinion-I called it laying a guilt trip on her). I intercepted the phone before she got to my son and told her that she had no right to talk to my children like that.

She is often "voicing her opinion" with advice that is both totally unsolicited and for the most part unwanted.
This has caused a very large rift between us which saddens me because we are quite a close family.

Am I totally off base here? I don't feel she has the right to talk to my children like that. I am afraid if she keeps it up that my children will not want to see her or spend time with her, that eventually they will end up hating her. How do I get her to understand that she is not their parent, I am and that I just want her to be a grandma.

Talk to your mom. Tell her what you feel. I understand your situation because my mom is also the same with your situation. It is very stressful at time and we often ended up fighting each other. Sometimes I have to understand her since they are the experienced one. Tell your mom that your style in parenting is different from her's and kids now a days are so smart that they can understand or get easily hurt with a simple body language we show to them.

What your mom did is completely unacceptable. if she had an issue she should take it up with you. Not an innocent child. She should be ashamed of her behavior.

It wasn't fair of her to talk ot your daughter like that, you can't expect a child of that age to take responsibility for family traditions etc.

She needs to be put in her place before she mentally harms your kids. I'd tell her to speak to you ONLY if she has these kinds of issues from now on and I'd BACK IT UP by telling my kids to simply ignore her and hang up if she is going to be so RUDE and OFFENSIVE. You have to begin with confronting her each and every time she pulls these stunts. Do not GENERALIZE! Be specific to the offense or event so you can focus on what you want and expect - NOT on what she wants. Don't let her over-ride you or treat you like a child just because she's your mother. BE STRONG and stand up to her manipulations!