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 Post subject: Ensuring Parental Boundaries are maintained.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:56 pm 
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Heeeerrrrree's JACKY!
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I have been very clear with certain family members what my boundaries are for my children. And yet, with each encounter with this particular member (SIL) those boundaries are thrown aside. In the end I look like the bad guy and people are crying and blaming me. I am fully aware that this is stemming from her abuse of other members of my in laws.
How to I keep boundaries with her? I have tried to cut ties and she disregards that. And why does this always leave me feeling like I am the bad guy?
Parenting my son is hard enough with out her adding drama and she always adds the drama.

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 Post subject: Re: Ensuring Parental Boundaries are maintained.
PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:20 am 
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Huffs Nutritional Yeast
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Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 12:02 am
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I've just recently became accepted that a member of my immediate family has a personality disorder. In learning how to cope with it I've read several books dealing with setting boundaries with folks with pds. I found them really helpful. There are a ton of books on establishing boundaries, maybe checking one or two out from your library would be a good place to start. I know it's something I have a hard time with but find the reinforcement from others who've been through it helps me stand my ground. Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Ensuring Parental Boundaries are maintained.
PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 8:22 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:46 pm
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i also have a family member with a diagnosis that causes really difficult behavior. for my own mental health, i decided to focus on my priority: the kid. Kid, although young, has been sat down and told "XX has a problem. She does things that she doesn't really mean, and even if she makes you really upset, please try remember it has nothing to do with you. It's never your fault. She is sick. If she makes you feel nervous, look for another grownup, and try never to get left alone with her if you can." I hate to say such things, since she is close family, and we spend significant amounts of time under the same roof, but i felt the need to make it really clear to the kid that it's not her fault, not her problem.

When there was some boundary crossing this summer (kid's nervous about math, i made her do her homework, despite large protests, XX began screaming about how i am such a bully and kid shouldn't have to study math, i'm so mean, etc etc), I did not directly confront XX, I went directly to the kid and said "look, this is something that needs to get done. I know you can do it, I don't want you to feel like you can't because i know you can. I am glad that XX sympathized with you but I felt really bad when i went to the teacher conference and found out you had skipped assignments last semester. I'd like to avoid that again. So please, let's get this done." A confrontation never would have helped, XX is always super confrontational with me. But I was being very clear about my own feelings, and I said it right in front of XX for her to hear. And I think XX was a bit off put that she didn't get the big fight she was gunning for- like a little kid with attention issues, when she didn't get the reaction she wanted, she backed right off. But most important, my priority was the kid and what was happening.

Family is so frustrating. If she were anyone else I would be very clear and say "i'm sorry but i'm not ready to talk to you until you seek treatment." Some of her exploits have been over the top (and i edited out the particulars because i suspect she follows me on the internet as well) and I never know what to expect, but to spare my mother any more drama, I just try to cruise along and deal with one situation at a time.

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 Post subject: Re: Ensuring Parental Boundaries are maintained.
PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 1:03 pm 
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Addicted to B12 Enemas
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Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:37 pm
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Location: Los Angeles, CA
Like Torque said, I'm on my kid's side first and foremost. My son is just shy of two and when he tells me before a visit what he doesn't want my Mom to do to him ("Grandma X no pick me up." "Grandma X no tickle me.") I back him up by telling him I will stay right with him and not let her do that. I tell my mom to ask him before she touches him. She can be a very difficult person and often makes fun of me for setting boundaries like that and tells my son he's "ornery", but I remember how frightening it was to be roughed up by her when I was child, and I'm willing to look "bad" for my son to be able to feel safe and good.

Like others have said, family is complicated and sometimes I wish it was as simple as saying, "We're done with you." My husband and I have had other stuff with other family members but it really all comes down to the fact that we're ok with how we parent and we're ok with looking bad. Our agreement with each other is to avoid heated controversy, but that our son is our priority above all other people. That means keeping out of drama and gossip and being honest and firm with people who constantly overstep. I don't want to send the message that the needs of sick and abusive people are more important than his.


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 Post subject: Re: Ensuring Parental Boundaries are maintained.
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:27 pm 
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Location: Montreal
i was just coming on here to vent about this. i think i am going to be essentially cutting ties with my sister after christmas. this whole visit with them at my parents house has been a long exercise in having my values and wishes trampled on, particularly where it comes to my daughter. the worst is that she gets my mom in on it so i end up fighting with both of them. i've caught her repeatedly feeding my 10 month old non-vegan food, she's mocked my decisions on how i parent, and is modeling parenting with her own son that i frankly don't want my daughter exposed to more than necessary. i don't think she even has any kind of disorder... she's just a very opinionated and severe person with a very different set of values than my husband or i. i can handle it when she's rude to me, but not when that rudeness affects my kid.

so yeah, it really pains me, but i really don't think i can handle spending more than a couple of days at a time with her family, and never without the buffer of my parents. they are moving overseas in a few months, and we were originally going to plan a long visit some time next year, because i would hate for my daughter to never see her cousins or uncle, but after this trip, i don't know if i trust her.


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 Post subject: Re: Ensuring Parental Boundaries are maintained.
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 9:42 pm 
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Heeeerrrrree's JACKY!
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Location: the Eug
Sadly, in this case, the information that SIL would even be there was hidden from us. And in a conversation about why we had a problem with what was going on my in-laws said "are you saying you don't trust us?". Yes I sort of am. We have said for two years now that her abusive behavior and total lack of respect for us as parents are why we will not be in the same town with her.
We keep getting told that family is the most important thing, but no one else has bothered to act like it. They all tiptoe around her because she had threatened to keep her kids away from the family.
fork

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Don't mind my breasts and vagina, I'm a gay man.---Idatetatooedguys.

"Tots: the universal food band-aid... better than a mother's kiss. Healin' wounds since 1954." Meggs


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