Oh, the relationship of women and their in-laws, there is
probably enough material for a library if we start ranting about how
annoying they can be. But seriously, if you thought your parents in law
were infuriating before you had kids, your annoyance will reach a
whole different level after becoming a mom!
Just some things that mine should stop doing, as in RIGHT.NOW. So
please dear parents in law, stop:
1. Invite all your best friends (which in the case of Spanish parents
in law is quite a big group of people) to the hospital to meet your
grandson the day after he is born. Yes, I get that you´re happy
and proud and what not. But maybe you could also get that I am
laying there, feeling as if I was run over by a truck, still bleeding
like I have never bled before and I really don´t need 15 visitors
that I didn´t invite in my room.
2. Constantly stare at me when I am breastfeeding and ask every
30 seconds if he´s still drinking. Yes, you have an underweight
grandson but please stop staring at my boobs the whole freaking
3. Keep talking about “my boy” as if you just had a baby. You didn´t.
Your boy is in his end 30ies and every time you ask for “your
boy” I will give you an update about your son, not your
grandson. Deal with it.
4. Follow me as if I have honey on my ass when I have my baby in
my arms. Ok, so this is your first grandson, that´s a big
happening. I get it, it´s my first kid so I was kind of off my game
as well for a little while. But seriously, having you breathing in my
neck because you´re following me every step I take with the baby
in my arms just because you don´t want to miss a minute of him
is not just stalkerish but also freaking annoying.
5. Ignore the rest of the world. Yes, I was also flabbergasted by this
new person in our family. And yes, it´s hard to not pay attention
to him. But please just have the decency to also ask how we are
doing in this new parenting gig when you call instead of only
asking about “your boy” and disconnecting again.
6. Think that you can ignore our parenting decisions just because
you have more experience as parents than we do. Yes, I know
you have two kids and they turned out just fine, but seriously,
they were born more than 35 years ago (some things also get
outdated you know) and besides, the fact that they turned out
fine doesn´t mean we agree with how you did things.
7. Talk to my son as if I am not there and keep telling him stuff like
“Maybe your mom will let you stay a weekend with us” “Maybe
your mom will…” I will tell you what his mom maybe will do, his
mom will maybe freak out because if you continue feeding those kinds
statements to my kid we all know who is going to be the
bad guy in a couple of years when I don´t let him stay every
weekend. Right? So just talk to me first instead of already using
my son as the mediator.
8. Keep asking for my son´s attention. I know he is very entertaining
but for f***´s sake, just stop asking him every 10 seconds to look
at you or to wave at you when he is eating or when he is playing.
Let him be because seriously, I thought little kids needed a lot of
attention, but frankly, you are way worse.
9. Show up at our doorstep right before bed time. Ok, you might not
agree with our crazy early bedtime (oh, just FYI, in other countries
you would be considered the crazy ones with the insane late
bedtimes for kids) but we are the ones deciding here. Overactive
grandparents trying to get his attention every 3 seconds doesn´t
really qualify as wind down time here… Also, I dare you to keep
your sanity if we leave “your boy” with you for a week and the
days last until 10 pm. Believe me, you will end up an alcoholic.
10. Talk as if you know the baby best and as if you know best what
my baby needs. You don´t have to explain me his eating habits
or what he prefers. I kinda see him about 10x as much as you do
so I might know a little better, thanksverymuch.
Tineke Franssen is a working mom abroad that is trying to keep her sanity amongst cultural clashes both at work and at home (Spanish parents in law anyone?). When she is not in the office or working through piles of laundry, you can find her drinking wines with friends, watching Grey´s Anatomy, playing field-hockey or writing on her blog Working Mommy Abroad (in English, so the Spanish side of the family can´t understand it). You can also follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.