Gransnet forums


Staying with family

(99 Posts)
keepingquiet Sat 09-Dec-17 23:12:20

My daughter and her two children live a distance away so I have to stay a few nights when I come to make the journey worth while. I find it hard reconciling their way of parenting with mine and just wondered if other grandparents find this a challenge too? I'm never sure if I should speak my mind or not, but if I do it often ends in bad feeling, so generally I keep quiet- but it can cause tensions. Anyone out there can give me any tips on how they deal with this?

Luckygirl Mon 11-Dec-17 14:30:45

When 2 of my GSs come to stay and I have to get them up in them morning for school, I always say "Have you washed your face?" and they look at me in great surprise - "We don't do THAT!!" Ditto combing of hair. I just laugh about it. They both have crazy tangled hair, but are happy well-adjusted children. It will not be long before they are gelling their hair and tarting themselves up and taking up too much bathroom time!

Nanna02 Mon 11-Dec-17 14:59:02

Jalima I think you misundersttof the "they deal with this" I think the OP meant other Gransnetters - not the OPs family members!!!!

Nanna02 Mon 11-Dec-17 14:59:37

"Misunderstood"!!!! Wish we could edit!!

Nanna02 Mon 11-Dec-17 15:04:55

I think you probably know really that you shouldn't say anything ...only proviso is if it was abusive or dangerous!!

adaunas Mon 11-Dec-17 15:25:45

Say nothing unless they are in danger and Mum hasn't noticed or damaging your property. For that I used to say "I don't like you doing that with my . . . which resulted in Mum telling them to leave it alone.
Its difficult but keeping quiet is easier.

GadaboutGran Mon 11-Dec-17 15:55:24

As ever it depends what it is, your relationship and how and when you say it. One solution, if it becomes really difficult and if you can afford, it is to investigate staying at a B&B nearby so you each have a break and you avoid the really tense times.

Rosie21 Mon 11-Dec-17 16:22:46

No doubt will have been said. They are ur grandchildren NOT ur children. Their parents are always right in terms of how the wish to raise their children.
Grandchildren are a gift.

willa45 Mon 11-Dec-17 16:58:21

'Mums' the word (no pun intended)!

Laine21 Mon 11-Dec-17 17:02:49

My mother always criticised the way I was bringing up my daughters, I let it just go over my head, but it really did annoy me. It annoyed ex-dh even more though. She often told me I was making a mistake, making a rod for my own back etc etc, I shouldn't give them choices.....on an on lol

so you would think I had run the risk of bringing up two delinquents, instead I have two lovely well balanced daughters, one of whom has her own business, the other went into IT industry and earns way more than I do.......and the opinion of my child rearing.......'I was lucky!'

I would suggest, supporting, not criticising. As the saying goes, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar!

BTW Both my girls have said they'll send any kids they have to me! LOL

M0nica Mon 11-Dec-17 17:50:41

Just remember back to when you were the young mother and parents and in laws arrived. I bet they didn't approve of some/many of your child rearing practices. How did you feel if they criticised you or said anything?

Precisely, so say nothing. They are not your children, and just as you brought your children up the way you believed best and didn't brook interference so are your children and their partners.

The exception is if they are putting the children into real and present danger and I suspect that is unlikely.

Jalima1108 Mon 11-Dec-17 17:56:16

Nanna02 - I re-read it and can see what the OP meant now!
Ignore that part of my post keepingquiet blush

MaggieMay60 Mon 11-Dec-17 19:39:23

The thing we all have to remind ourselves when with our GC is that they are not ours to discipline. Keep quiet and just enjoy the fact that you are not expected to do anything but keep them safe!

EmilyHarburn Mon 11-Dec-17 19:58:44

I keep quiet. I focus on the things I can do to help like peeling the potatoes etc.

LuckyFour Mon 11-Dec-17 20:22:28

I support both my daughters totally in everything they do. Sometimes I think I would do something differently but I never ever say anything. All my grandchildren are turning out well.

Belinda49 Mon 11-Dec-17 20:56:58

My Mother was impossible in many ways but she never, ever critisised the way I brought up my girls or my relationship with my husband, no matter what she really thought to herself. I am not as good at minding my own business but I do think my daughters are doing an excellent job with their children in far more difficult times. I think it's much harder now than it was in the 80's. I'm sure your daughter's doing her best too.

AlgeswifeVal Mon 11-Dec-17 21:57:33

You must say nothing. It will cause trouble if you do. Don’t look for trouble unless trouble troubles you. Their children, their house and you are a visitor. So in a nutshell, nothing to do with you what they say or do. Providing they are not violent or abusive to their kids of course.

pauline42 Mon 11-Dec-17 23:02:48

. This is an absolute no brainer! Zip up your lips - shorten you visit - and once you get back home be VERY thankful for the peace and tranquility !

cornergran Mon 11-Dec-17 23:28:07

Have to agree, no matter how hard it is unless there is abuse or the children are in immediate danger then say nothing. It is their home and so their rules. As Emilyh says do something practical it will distract you and perhaps remove you from the situation. Just be careful not to seem disapproving when you do. I know it’s hard, but if you can move past the frustrations and just relax you will have a much happier time when you visit. Parenting comes in many different styles, not necessarily better or worse, just different.

Greengage Tue 12-Dec-17 00:22:56

My GD is only 6 months old. My DD and I get on well. She is fully aware that things were done differently in my day, but I always say 'You have to do what works for you. Every child and every mother is different'.

Lovelifedance Tue 12-Dec-17 06:37:09

I too live a long way from my son, DIL and granddaughter so I have to stay a couple of days to make it worthwhile, I’ve recently cut this to one night as this house is a health hazard. They have a puppy and two cats. When they got the puppy they started to feed the cats on the dining room table and just leave the dishes there. On my last visit we ate Sunday lunch with a cat sat in the table throughout. My husband won’t go. I say nothing as it’s their house, their rules.

meandashy Tue 12-Dec-17 08:33:38

I would have to agree with everyone who says to say nothing.
However if you are asked your opinion/advice be prepared for that not to be acted upon!
It is definitely a different dynamic when someone stays in your space, even if that someone is your flesh and blood whom you love dearly. Children act differently (dgc) and may play up to the audience! My gd definitely does this when my mum comes. Thankfully they don't stay with me when come as I can't provide separate beds for mum and step father so it takes a bit of pressure off (gd was living with me full time up until the summer of this year).
Enjoy your visits, they aren't children for long ?

Cold Tue 12-Dec-17 11:02:24

Luckygirl: When 2 of my GSs come to stay and I have to get them up in them morning for school, I always say "Have you washed your face?" and they look at me in great surprise - "We don't do THAT!!"

I had to gently explain to my Mum that she shouldn't try and wash my kids faces in winter when we lived in Sweden - stripping off the natural oils could cause skin damage and even frostbite. The HV explained that we should only use oil-based products on winter mornings - even baby lotions and creams were dangerous.

Magrithea Wed 13-Dec-17 09:27:36

As I always say to friends who are about to be/have just become grandparents - you need to learn to zip it! Parenting styles differ and trends in parenting change - we don't make babies go 4 hours in between feeds or stick them in the garden in the pram for hours anymore - and your DD and SiL have a right to parent in their own way!