How to Politely Say 'Butt Out' to Meddling, Well-Meaning Grandparents

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-21-2008
How to Politely Say 'Butt Out' to Meddling, Well-Meaning Grandparents
7
Thu, 12-15-2011 - 8:47am

How to Politely Say 'Butt Out' to Meddling, Well-Meaning Grandparents

Sure, they mean well, but sometimes your parents and in-laws can make you scream. Here's how to deal...

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Community Leader
Registered: 01-03-2004

When my nephew as 3 years old my sister's in-laws "announced" they were getting him a dog. They weren't asking if they could get him a dog or if a dog was wanted. They just TOLD

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-19-2008

Yes...I agree.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-21-2008

Wow, a dog is a HUGE responsibility!

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Registered: 12-22-2000

Avatar for deenow17
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2004
As a grandparent, I really enjoyed this link. It was reasonable & made a lot of sense. I'm fortunate that my DD & I have a good relationship where she will tell me upfront if she disagrees with something & I will keep my mouth closed if I don't agree with her child raising methods as DGS isn't mine to raise but rather to enjoy. But some days, I almost chew my tongue off as some of the rules that have come into play these days don't make a lot of sense! For example, we aren't allowed to buy baby walkers in Canada. Why - because a few children were injured when they fell down the stairs in them. Was this the fault of the walker or someone not ensuring the child was in a safe area? Sometimes the resulting decision does reflect the actual issue to begin with.
Avatar for deenow17
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2004
Summer, how old is your son? Is he old enough to understand & follow through on your wishes?

My Mom felt I was overprotective & went out of her way to make my kids have "fun" in spite of my objections when she had them alone. For this reason, she didn't get my kids until they were at least 7 & they knew Mommy's rules were to be followed even if Mommy wasn't there. Jumping off the 8 ft high bridge into the water below was not allowed unless an adult was in the water waiting for them but while they weren't allowed much pop or candy at home. It was ok to enjoy at Nanny's. We talked these things out before each visit & came up with strategies to help them deal with avoiding actions they knew I would disagree with. So for example, they didn't "feel" like jumping when no was was going to be in the water. They would try it another day. Mom wanted them to be happy so she wasn't going to force them to jump. Mom would have said something negative & encouraged them to disobey me & lie about it if they had said "no, we can't do that because Mommy doesn't want us to". I know this to be true because it happened with my eldest. My DD could never keep a secret so she told me all the bad things she did when she came home.

My youngest was 9 when he stayed the first time alone with my parents because I knew he wasn't old enough until then to make the right choices. As it was, Mom allowed him to drive the boat alone against my wishes but I expected this so he & I had reached a decision on this before he went. He would always wear his life jacket (not a must do of my Mom's) and stay in the bay. It was a very small, shallow lake & frankly he was quite safe as there were always other adults around the bay but I wanted to make sure he understood his responsibilities. This one really stuck with him in spite of some of his "stupid" decisions as a teen. He has always worn a life jacket on the water in spite of being an excellent swimmer & he is a very careful boater. Maybe I should have let him drive my car at 9 then I might have avoided 3 smashed cars by the time he was 19 due to his stupidity. He has a lifetime ban on driving any of my vehicles but is now a very conservative & careful driver but that is a different story.

If your son is too young to handle making the right choices then I would keep him home. It isn't worth the risk if you think your IL's would let him do something dangerous. Spending a week staying up late, watching endless tv & eating pounds of junk isn't going to cause any long term damage. But getting injured on a race car or ATV can do this and so I would only allow my child to ride when & where I felt it was safe.

Dee
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-19-2008

Hi Dee,