“Don’t scold my grandson.” “Why didn’t you put a sweater on him?”, “When are you going to make him a nutritious meal?” If you just cover your anger, read this.
The list of things we hear from our mothers and mothers-in-law about how we should care for, feed, entertain, and raise our children seems endless and even unbearable. The reason why all these intrusions in your work occur is mainly because those grandmothers have more years in the position of parents than you, and they believe that with their suggestions and even demands, they are helping you to do your role better. And what about your own mother! It doesn’t matter if you are thirty or forty years old, in her mind you will always be a girl who needs to be instructed and corrected. For her it is something automatic, almost inevitable.
Another reason why now grandmothers believe that you are not good enough at your job as a mother is that they went through the same challenges. Maybe they even made the same mistakes you did, but over the years they overcame them, so they see reality from a “more expert” perspective.
We must admit it, sometimes grandmothers have more patience, creativity and enthusiasm when they spend time with our children than we do, it is something that we should admire and appreciate very much. And what about the food? If you are a super busy mom like me, with other things besides home and raising children, you will know how to recognize the superiority of the meals that your mother-in-law and your mother prepare. Perhaps neither you nor I have the time and patience to make a Thanksgiving-worthy meal every day of the week.
However, if we do a little memory, we will remember that when these grandmothers were simply our mothers, they were not so patient, or creative, or enthusiastic. Experience and years have helped them to be those wonderful grandmothers that our children look forward to seeing every weekend, or every time they visit for a family vacation. The next time you find yourself in a situation where your mother or mother-in-law drives you crazy with their recommendations, consider the following:
1. They do it with very good intention
They love your children almost as much as you do and want the best for them. Every time you are about to explode, remember with gratitude their gestures of affection and generosity, all the times they have helped you in your work as a mother, wife and even professional when they have been caring for your children.
Relee: 5 tips from grandma that we can leave behind
2. Don’t take it so hard
Remember that they are from another generation, where things were actually done differently and family relationships were less favorable. Take a deep breath and don’t give too much importance to recklessness; You must not let them take away your peace or affect your family life.
3. Your children need their grandparents
In addition to the desire that grandparents have to spend time with their grandchildren, your children also enjoy their company, their stories, their gifts and even their scolding. It is very important that your children have a good relationship with their grandparents. As Pope Francis says: “How important are grandparents in the life of the family to communicate that heritage of humanity and faith that is essential for every society!”
Reread: 5 tips from my grandmother to face adversity.
4. Create a healthy distance
Although it seems ironic, the best way to have a good relationship with the in-laws is by putting a reasonable distance in between. Weekly visits, walks and meetings on special dates are essential, of course, but more important is that each family has its own space and the ability to carry out its own dynamics. The best way to ruin a relationship with the in-laws is excessive coexistence and physical closeness (for example: living very close to in-laws, or even in the same house!).
5. You too will be in the same situation
Remember, you are a mother and you want the best for your children. This involves correcting them frequently, dealing with the almost automatic urge to help them even when they don’t need you, and many other maternal functions that go from action to reaction with very little opportunity for reflection. Children grow faster than you think. When you least expect it, you will be a mother-in-law and a grandmother. Be careful with your judgments! «With the same rod that you measure …».
Relee: Grandma, your granddaughters need a legacy.
6. Above all, do not harm the relationship
When you have already tried and reflected on all of the above, but your situation with your mother or mother-in-law is unbearable, for the good of your family and your marriage you must take the necessary measures to get out of the conflict. Whether this means moving house, limiting coexistence or visits, or speaking clearly about the problem (preferably that you talk to your mother or your husband with his, but never the other way around), but the vital thing is that when you take action of this type, they do not harm the relationship.
Whichever you think is the best way to settle the conflict, keep in mind that the relationship is the most important thing and that you should be as diplomatic as possible. Your parents and your husband’s will always be family. There is nothing sadder than a relationship broken by not knowing how to solve conflicts in a loving way.