Family Life

Get advice and share ideas on navigating one's own family and extended family, including relationships with in-laws, grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, and more.

Anonymous posted in Family Life Tuesday

Boundaries

I’m struggling with holding my tongue with my mother in law right now. I thought our head count for our child’s first birthday party was done until I get one of our invites “return to sender” with her handwriting on it. SHE SENT OUT OUR INVITES to people and we didn’t even know but I’m curious as to how she got her hands on them. I was already ordering food and cake with the head count I alread... More

  • Anonymous
    Tuesday

    Yes ... she doesn’t listen to him or her other son. She does what she wants because everyone in her life has catered to her whims but I don’t. I wasn’t raised that way

  • Anonymous
    Tuesday

    Who did she invite? Her own friends? I agree with first poster! Don’t cater to this people. Maybe it will be awkward for you at the party, but it will send her a message. Additionally, set boundaries AND consequences if she doesn’t respect them. That would drive me insane! My mom is bad... but not like that.

Anonymous posted in Family Life Tuesday

Rant: Easter family issues

My family gets together every Easter for lunch at my mother’s. We basically get together for the main holidays and every few months for birthdays. This year, my sister’s kids were going to be at their dad’s. Their dad is now letting the kids go with my sister on Easter. Rather than going to my mom’s, they are going to her boyfriend’s family get together and skipping my mom’s. My sist... More

  • Anonymous
    Tuesday

    It sounds like the issue is her boyfriend? Is it just him that doesn’t want to go to your family stuff or do you think it’s her too? My husband isn’t a fan of my family gatherings... my family knows it and they don’t really bring it up to me anymore because they know it’s a sensitive topic. If anything, they’ll just say “hey, we really miss having you at these events. What can we change so you ... More

Anonymous posted in Family Life Apr 12

Family Gatherings

We’re a family of 4, my husband and I and our two kids. I have a big family compared to my husband. Holidays, and celebrations, etc are a big thing for us. He is always unwilling and states that he doesn’t need to go or be there. But we’re a family and we should be there together. Not just me and the kids. I understand that he doesn’t or we don’t need to go to every family event but if it is im... More

  • Anonymous
    Tuesday

    It’s also nice (and important) to spend time with just your immediate family, rather than focusing on the extended...

  • Angie
    Thursday

    Compromise. Maybe he only goes to family gatherings on holidays and birthdays. Or take turns....he skips, you skip, he skip, you skip. The ones you skip,,,,,he gets to take the kids alone and you have a break from parenting.

Annie posted in Education Apr 10

Leaving my 2 year old for nursing school

Guys I'm stuck in a huge dilemma. I live in Dallas texas with my husband and my parent live literally down the street from me. I just got accepted to Nursing school which was always my dream. Problem is, the school is in Houston Texas which is 4 hours away. It's a 2 year program. And I have to leave m 2.5 year old and husband because of his job here to go to Houston. She will spend the ... More

  • Kris
    Thursday

    Go for it Annie! This is your dream and don’t give up. This will be better for you and your family as well in the future . You can manage the all details and don’t feel that you are bad mom. You are great ! Get this done girl!

  • Jing
    Friday

    One of my husband’s friends gave birth during her residency program while her husband was working in another city four hours away. She hired a nanny and was a single mom during the week for about two years. It was extremely hard at times but they made through it. Since then she graduated from the program, reunited with her husband and had another child. I think a lot of it depends on the unique... More

Chores

Do you make your kids do chores? Why or why not

  • Margaret
    Apr 09

    My son will be 2 next month. We don't have set "chores," but he does help around the house. He has to pick up his toys at the end of the day, he likes to feed our dog, and we even made a swiffer that's his size because he always wants to help clean the floors. My husband and I felt it's important to start having him help around the house early to instill a sense of respons... More

  • Mama
    Apr 10

    Yes we will. My hopes is that it will teach industriousness. Being helpful. Selflessness. Independence.

MIL watching baby, how to handle an awkward request for her to leave at end of day

When we first set up this plan to have both grandmothers watching my baby, I told my husband not to over commit because it will he awkward to scale back on commitments... And here we are, wanting to scale back our WEEKLY family dinners on Thursdays with his bro/his mom who watches my baby that day, to bi-weekly. I know if we wait till bro gets a job, that can be the reason to scale back to b... More

  • Michaela
    Apr 04

    You could be honest about the reason. Probably the hardest option but she might take it better than you expect her to

  • B
    Apr 05

    You also could stop thinking of these as dinner parties. Talk to them and say it’s too much. Hey brother, your week to bring the food. Hey grandma, I’m starting the crockpot you watch it.

Anonymous posted in Family Life Apr 01

Juggling baby and toddler bedtimes

My two month old is ready for her good night sleep around 7pm, but my 2 year old’s bedtime is around 8:30-9. My baby sleeps well but someone needs to be close if she starts to fuss otherwise it will take a long time to calm her back to sleep. My husband gets home with my son around 6:30pm so this means I’m often leaving right after dinner to put the baby to bed. My husband and son feel abandone... More

  • B
    Apr 02

    I’d either try to push babies bedtime back (and adjust naps and wake time to help), or get a monitor so that you can put her to sleep then go back from like 7:30-8:30 with the family.

  • Megan
    Apr 02

    We didn’t put our second in his own room until about 4 months old. So when he was that age we would have him downstairs with us til our bedtime. Either being held or in a swing. Once he was in his own room we started their bedtime routines together. We would have our toddler help put the baby to bed as part of her routine and than finish her routine. That helps keep her up a little later as she... More

Does anyone have any advice on long distance relationships between child and parent?

  • Belladonna
    Apr 14

    Skype everyday so you can have a face to face interaction. Also mailing thing in the mail can be fun and writing letter to each other. Just some ideas.

Anonymous posted in Family Life Mar 29

Most important factors in deciding where to live?

An opportunity came up for us to move back to my home state (Maine). We have lived in Houston, Texas for almost two years. It is where my son was born, where my husbands family lives, but we have seen no progress in setting roots through getting a permanent home or anything, so it wouldn’t be a difficult transition back. We are feeling conflicted because where one place is bad, the other is goo... More

  • PK
    Mar 30

    Where would you be the most financially stable? What is cost of living like? Would the air quality in Texas affect your health enough where it would hinder any of you from being happy? With a long cold winter.. do you feel like you have the tools to engage your son until it warms up enough to go play outside again? If you were to move to Maine, would you still have the same amount of oppo... More

Anonymous posted in Family Life Mar 28

Mothers intuition

I dont like my mil, she is rude. But is that a good enough reason to not let my son spend the night at her house? I would like them to have a relationship. But I dont want a relationship with her. I'm not sure if it's my dislike for her or my intuition telling me not to send him to her house anymore. My boyfriend wants his mom to see our son as much as she wants, which is one weekend a ... More

  • Theresa
    Apr 04

    I didn't like my mother-in-law early in our relationship but always encouraged her relationship with our children. I am glad I did. She is now one of my favorite people. If a relationship isn't good, you need to be responsible for your actions in the relationship. That means treating her the way you would like to be treated and speaking up if some behavior is not okay without condem... More

  • Bee
    Tuesday

    I don't know why this ride seems to exist between you and your MIL, but to be honest it really doesn't matter. As a mom and baby's first protector, you need to follow your own intuition at every turn. Personally, overnight visits with ANYONE - relatives included - are completely out of the question for me at this stage. Mine is 13 months old and I have no idea if this will ever chan... More

Rye posted in Family Life Mar 26

Dogs that are good with active kids? Is getting a dog a good option for kids?

My son is 7 years old. Only child. I’m thinking about getting him a dog but I want to here other peoples opinions about having a dog (pros & cons).

  • Annie
    Tuesday

    We have a Black Russian Terrier. By far one of the greatest breeds. He is huge, plays fetch endlessly, doesn’t shed (unless he really needs a bath), and has the best temperament. Pros of having a dog: teaches your kid responsibility; protection Cons: do you have the time, space, energy?

Feeling sad :(

My son is just over 2 and sometimes I feel sad that I can’t remember when he was a baby! Thank goodness for photos and videos. I feel like I’m trying to take in this phase that I can’t remember the way he was when he was younger. Anyone else?

  • Anonymous
    Mar 24

    My daughter is 3 ,I can’t seem to remember the first year of her life.Its a blur.As you said thank God for photos and videos.

Anonymous posted in Family Life Mar 22

Family Drama

I'm 28 weeks pregnant and dealing with some drama tonight that I'm trying not to get stressed about. Does have any advice? So, back in the beginning of my pregnancy, my mom made a comment about wanting to stay with us for a week when the baby is born to help out. This is her first grandchild and she is extremely excited. She lives 12+ hours away. Initially I thought "yeah, ok, mak... More

  • Mary
    Mar 27

    It’s pretty clear your mom feels rejected by your statements about her staying over and is responding accordingly. When your babe is born, you’ll probably want all the help you can get (depending on how stressful she is as a guest.) The ideas about her coming the week after are good, but you know better about the boundaries you need to set. Either way, talk to her again calmly and lovingly and ... More

  • Lily
    Mar 27

    My mother in law came to stay when we had our first baby, it was okay until she started acting like a child and just up and left. My parents wanted nothing to do with anything with the baby. If your mom wants to act like a child and over react by acting like you said she isn't allowed to stay at your house ever, then I would just say you are about to have a baby and you can't have you... More

Anonymous posted in Family Life Mar 20

Unwanted baby name input...

My husband and I didn’t tell anyone what we were going to name our baby until after he arrived (partially due to the fact that we hadn’t decided yet). Now that I’m pregnant with baby #2, I’ve been more open when his family asks what our name options are... they’re pretty verbal about what they like and don’t like... and I keep finding myself getting offended. How should I respond to their sco... More

  • Stacey
    Mar 22

    My mom and sister hated our son's name when we chose it (Ronan) but they came around. We told them we liked it and he is our baby. To be honest I don't think they heard it correctly the first time.

  • Mark
    Mar 28

    We made up fake names that were so obnoxious, that it disarmed them. I also told many people they did not have review privileges.

Homesickness?

My oldest child is veery close to my side of the family, but they all live in other states. My child almost always has a hard time leaving them and has started to talk about running away there “jokingly” although I do not see my daughter running away I truly believe she would rather be with them than with us. Moving is not an option and she is generally happy until she talks to them . Please ... More

  • jxn8tors
    Mar 20

    We lived several hours away from family a few years back. I did ‘share’ my kids with their grandmas during the summer and school breaks...not the whole time just a bit. They of course was glad to go, but they were also glad to come back home to me! I think a couple wks away made them appreciate home a little more.

  • Paige
    Mar 21

    Thank you so much, I will definitely try

Childish grandparents ruining my baby’s day

How do other parents handle divorced grandparents that act like high schoolers? This is not the first incident with them not getting along when it comes to celebrating the baby. The gender reveal party was a nightmare. I am planning my daughters 2nd birthday & it’s difficult for me because my step mother is not a fan of me & my mom. She has actually said that if my mom is there my sh... More

  • Anonymous
    Mar 06

    Hi! Sorry if I sound mean but she's only your step mom..I would just talk to your dad and if he shows then that's wonderful and if he doesn't then well you know where his priority is..do what works for you and your family..continue to plan it the way you want to plan it..she's only your step mom

  • Lindsey
    Mar 09

    I have so much experience with this... and it took me a long time but you need to set boundaries with them. And your dad should stand up to her and be there for his grandchild. You need to say this is a party for my child and if you act inappropriate don’t come at all. Your child does not need toxic people in her life. It is a hard thing to do but so necessary.

Vic posted in Family Life Mar 04

How much time is reasonable

I dont like my mother in law. She has been slyly rude from the very beginning. Now that we have moved over 100 miles away from her her once a month weekend visits with my son has come to an end. Instead I'm thinking she can come up for one day one night a month. To visit with my son while my boyfriend and I have a date night. I really want to do once every 2 months since she is a pain to be... More

  • Anonymous
    Mar 05

    Once a month sounds good to me. But why don’t you try it and see how everyone does? A day and a night a month isn’t bad. I wish my daughter saw her grandparents that much.

  • Vic
    Mar 05

    Thanks for your replies. To be honest a date night once a month would be nice and we wouldn't be home part of the time so it would just be her and him for the night....

Kids sleeping in your bed at night? GOOD OR BAD?

Thanks for your input

  • Anonymous
    Mar 01

    My parents co-slept with me in the same bed, then transitioned me to my own bed in the same room when I became a toddler then eventually my own room. I really didn’t have any problems, had a night Light whenever I’d get scared is the only time I’d go to their room and after I fell asleep they’d put me back in my bed or my mom would come in my room. Now with my own baby, we do co-sleep. It’s ju... More

  • Anonymous
    Monday

    I cosleep. I love it. I grew up cosleeping with my parents till I was about 4. It was a struggle to sleep alone but I did it. I plan to do the same with my daughter. My husband supposedly slept through the night his first night home. In reality he was put in a crib in his bedroom on the opposite side of the house and my mil or fil would set an alarm and go feed him every couple of hours. My hus... More

Anonymous posted in Family Life Feb 21

Sudden sense of being overwhelmed ? Mood swings maybe just venting

I’m 6 weeks pregnant with our second baby, and over the last two days I’ve had MASSIVE mood swings. Like happy one second and snapping at my husband who did not do anything wrong the next. From laughing with my son, to being totally ticked off because he threw his crayon to the floor... I know they say each pregnancy is different, but I NEVER had this with my son when I was pregnant with him. I... More

  • Nicole
    Mar 20

    You are a human before you are a mom. This moodiness is not a defect in your parenting or personality. It is hormonal but only to the extent that a pregnant human’s body reacts to a totally shit situation! Your feelings are real and reasonable. Kill the guilt and listen to your body. Your in law sucks. BOY BYE. Been there. Bum bro in law “visited” for months... kicked him out🙏🏻. Your husband’s ... More

  • Anonymous
    Apr 06

    Well, as much as I would give anything to kick the brother in law out, I can’t. It’s his house, we are here helping him- which we just had to uncover $500 worth of utility bills he failed to take care of- yeah that sucked. Yes I am a human but I am a mom, and as much as I need to vent, I am a mom, and a moms job is thankless, and sometimes hard and unforgiving, but it’s not a job id trade for... More

Anonymous posted in Faith & Religion Feb 20

My son's grandmother imposing her religion on him

How the hell do you deal with religious fanatics in the family who force and coerce your child to become a member of their religion? My mother has found her dedication to the Christian faith in her later years. "You do you" is my stance, so hooray for her, but for my baby I'm letting him choose what religion, if any, he'll follow. That means I am not having him baptized in an... More

  • Lynn
    Feb 22

    My MIL keeps sending them books with religious undertones or straight up religious themed saying that these are well written and knows we won’t buy them. So she will. I just toss them into the trash can. My house. I say what stays and what goes. And if she’s not careful, I say who....

  • A
    Feb 22

    Just my two cents and hopefully it will give you the child's perspective. I grew up in a culture where being religious is not even questioned (I didn't even know the word atheist till I went to high school or college, don't remember). We did all things religious in our family and all the families I knew were like that. However, I did start questioning the beliefs and superstitions a... More

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