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about my parents at Xmas

(24 Posts)
maisiegreen Sat 28-Nov-15 12:08:31

I'm in the situation where I have 2 elderly parents and 3 children in their twenties. We live 100 miles from my parents, and about the same distance from our children, in a 3 bedroom house on 3 floors. My mum has recently had a knee operation, and is recovering OK.
I have a brother and sister, and we take it in turns to see our parents over Xmas, followed by a whole-family party soon after.
So, I asked my mum and dad (this is 'my' year)if they would like to come over for Xmas, but that they would have to stay in a local BandB as we haven't got room in the house because this year all our children plus one partner are staying(needless to say, we'd take them back and forth). Or we would drive up to them for the day (which would mean that my daughter couldn't be there).
My mum and dad said they'd think about it. a month on, my daughter rings to say that she wouldn't be able to see my mum and dad for Xmas, as my mum had told her that she and dad couldn't handle staying in a [email protected] (My daughter lives 200 miles from them, but had just seen them for the day as they were staying at a hotel nearby)
My daughter is upset and thinks that we should make room for my parents.
I feel upset, as I've tried to do things right - I truly can't see why my mum and dad can't stay in a local [email protected] and come for the day. My whole life with my mum is her pushing me to get her own way.
So, my daughter is judging me as inflexible and says that I should let my mum manipulate the situation this way because she's old. But she's always been like this.
Anyway, I probably sound like a bitch, but I've spent my life appeasing my mum, and now she's using my daughter in her games.

aggie Sat 28-Nov-15 12:20:35

Our DDs nearly fell out with us when we preferred to go to a B+B instead of their homes with mountains of stairs !!............. no pleasing us lol

ginny Sat 28-Nov-15 12:26:03

I think you have been quite reasonable. Maybe your daughter could stay at the B & B. and leave room for your parents to sleep in a comfy room in your house . smile

soontobe Sat 28-Nov-15 12:34:19

I think that the knee operation does mean that it would be easier for them, if she stayed at yours.
Up to you though.

JamJar1 Sat 28-Nov-15 12:39:41

Well, your Mum is still recovering from a knee op, in your shoes I would put them up in your house and let one of the children stay in the BandB. Or can another room in the house be used as a temporary bedroom? There is obviously some history between you and your Mum but it may be your daughter is not being manipulated as you feel she is, it's just how she feels? And it's just one day?

thatbags Sat 28-Nov-15 12:44:18

How does you DD suggest that you "make room" for your parents? That she goes to stay in the B&B instead?

In your post you say 'they' were staying at a hotel nearby. Does this mean your parents were staying at the hotel near your daughter or the other way round? If the former, then I don't see why your parents can't stay somewhere near you over xmas so that they can see their grandchildren on the day.

Would your children be annoyed if you said you were going to spend the day (or part of it) at your parents' house instead of your children coming to stay with you?

Could you just wing it (tell them all how many beds/rooms you have and let them sort it out amongst themselves who stays where) and see who turns up at yours? Or is it that you don't want your parents to stay over at your house (that's a straightforward question, not a criticism; one doesn't have to like one's parents)?

How about not seeing any of them and having a quiet xmas on your own?

Good luck sorting it out to your satisfaction.

Stansgran Sat 28-Nov-15 13:14:21

Op said she had a house on three floors. Presumably no bedroom on the ground floor. How many houses have en suite ground floor bedrooms? My choice would be a premier inn ( disabled room) and visit on the day if I were an elderly parent and wanted to go to see them . Given a new knee I would be thinking more of my knee than anything else.
Not wishing to derail. I have two DD s and they know they are welcome anytime. Dd1 has not mentioned Christmas ,DD2 has said they want to do their own family Christmas . I have a new hip. DH and I have booked into a famous hotel in the Lakes which we have left wanting to visit. Just saying I would not be tottering up and down three flight on my new hip or having rumbustious children flinging their arms around me much as I love them.

Elegran Sat 28-Nov-15 13:15:13

I would suggest that you return DD's phone call to say that you have thought about it, and the only way that everyone can be there for Christmas Day is for at least one of your daughters to stay in the B&B - that there is no way that YOU can do that, as you will be so busy, and you have no intention of sleeping on the floor under the dining table. Add that you want to see everyone, of course, and you love to have to have them all under your roof but really the logistics are difficult.

Ask her which of them she thinks is most likely to do this, and suggest that she organises it as you have so much else to do. They are no longer children, so they can take responsibility for part of the celebrations.

Stansgran Sat 28-Nov-15 13:15:59

Not left - always wanted to visit.

maisiegreen Sat 28-Nov-15 13:41:45

Well, we do have a downstairs bedroom with en suite. The living room is on the top floor which is obviously not ideal. But my mum has decided that she can't stay in a [email protected] but can manage the house. I'm sure my daughter would stay in the [email protected] but that's not the point. We very rarely get our youngsters together and that is the way we want to do it.

soontobe Sat 28-Nov-15 13:43:14

It sounds like you have made up your mind really.

Elegran Sat 28-Nov-15 13:46:57

Then it sounds as if either your parents will be disappointed and at least one DD upset, or someone will end up on the floor under the dining table. Make sure it is one of the daughters, not you!

JamJar1 Sat 28-Nov-15 13:47:21

Yes I'm not sure why you asked if you were being unreasonable?
As you had already decided on the outcome?

M0nica Sat 28-Nov-15 13:47:25

One Christmas when DF, then over 90, was spending Christmas with us I paid for DS & DDiL to stay at a local B&B, it was within walking distance of the house, so no drink driving problems, as I did not have enough bedrooms to go round.

It caused neither comment nor complaint.

maisiegreen Sat 28-Nov-15 13:48:05

Yes I have made my mind up. I just wanted to know if posters thought that I was being unreasonable.

Granarchist Sat 28-Nov-15 13:57:17

My elderly parents much preferred being in a B&B as they could escape the chaos and noise of grandchildren and their friends and Premier Inns are brilliant if you have one nearby.

However your parents wont be with you forever and maybe gritting your teeth and telling your offspring that one of them will have to sleep elsewhere would be the best thing. After all with the distances involved you don't see a huge amount of your parents and until you have a new knee you have no idea of the pain it involves (far worse than hips) - so perhaps your mother needs to be the centre of attention this Christmas?

soontobe Sat 28-Nov-15 14:02:56

AYBU? - probably slightly. But it is difficult to be very precise over the internet about someone else's family set up.

It sounds like there are quite a lot of issues between you and your mum.

Anniebach Sat 28-Nov-15 14:08:27

You will have your daughters long after your parents are dead , if your daughters stay in a B & B you will still be together until bed time

thatbags Sat 28-Nov-15 14:26:57

I hope you come back to this thread and tell us how it all went afterwards, maisie. Good luck again and I hooe you enjoy your xmas day.

thatbags Sat 28-Nov-15 14:27:07


Daddima Sat 28-Nov-15 14:28:02

I don't think you're being unreasonable at all. You have said they're welcome, but B&B is best for them to sleep in, so if they choose not to come, then so be it.

If your mum has previous for manipulation, letting her have her own way now will just set a precedent, especially as she'll get older, and possibly more frail.

We made a grave error with my own late mother in law, and gave in to the tears ( fake) and poor me act when Himself's stepfather died, so stick to your guns with a smile on your face!

I'd say let her know you'd love to see them on the day, and you're sure they'll be comfortable in the B & B


Hard Hearted Hannah.

granjura Sat 28-Nov-15 15:56:28

My parents always stayed for 2 weeks at Christmas, it was not always easy- but once they are gone, they are gone. I am glad we all made the effort when i counted. Why come and ask on GN if yu've made up your mind- don't quite get it.

annsixty Sat 28-Nov-15 16:25:12

My mother went into residential care when she was 95, she spent the following Christmas with us as she had spent every Christmas with me except for 2 for all of my 62 years and it was NEVER easy. She did not like Christmas and tried to make sure it affected everyone. The last few years of her life she was not physically able to travel so we would go and see her on Christmas Eve and exchange gifts. My point is you must do what you feel is right for you. I would not have felt comfortable doing anything differently.

Alea Sat 28-Nov-15 16:30:23

Oh the emotional baggage of Christmas. I can see why your parents might feel "pushed out" but it can work both ways. Looking back, my parents always chose to stay in a upmarket hotel in Central London expecting DH to pick them up and take them home on Christmas and Boxing Days. At the time it irritated me as it meant he couldn't drink and I felt they must have thought our conditions were too primitive haphazard for them.
However, with the benefit of hindsight,it meant they weren't woken at silly o clock by overexcited toddlers, they had a better bed and an en suite bathroom, in fact it was probably Mum's "treat" to enjoy a few days of luxury.
In your case, I would have hoped the DDs would offer a room for their elderly grandparents so that they could have early night or lie down (especially if in pain). If the B&B is a 5* one it might be different!
But do as you would be done by, perhaps in the future, with tinies in the house a B&B might be preferable.
Never mind and , bottom line, don't let it spoil Christmas