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Family discord

(68 Posts)
jenpax Tue 21-May-19 17:38:18

This is a long story so I will try to make sure I cover all relevant parts
I have 3 adult DD.
Due to my poor health I have been living with eldest DD and SIL and 2 of my DGC since last June; this is not a permanent arrangement as I am selling my current home and downsizing and this is going through (slowly )
I have been in the habit of helping with drop off and pick up for a class the children of eldest DD and middle DD do after school one day per week mum is at work and dad although he will be at home from work likes to use the time to do chores, other DD doesn’t drive.
Youngest DD has 3 children all small and has recently moved to the area after a separation from SIL. She has been waiting for a course of CBT and the assessment appointment is tomorrow unfortunately clashing with the class, I had intended to ask middle DD to do the pick up and drop off for me as she has in the past with her father helping, but her DD is ill so she can’t this week
I asked eldest DD if SIL could maybe do the class this week but she was very angry and said that I should be ring fencing my time for her children for this class, that I am showing no regard to her or the children and that youngest DD should just cancel the appointment or try to rearrange it. I don’t agree with her as I felt that a medical appointment should take priority as it’s a one off and so difficult to get on these CBT courses.
Youngest DD and eldest DD don’t get on and have had several rows since DD3 moved i know DD 3 is very difficult and demanding but I felt that her getting mental health support would benefit everyone, eldest doesn’t agree
She has now accused me of perpetrating a form of emotional abuse in the situation and showing disregard for her and her husband who have done a lot to help me recover. I feel often that I can’t say no to any of their requests because they are putting me up so I try to do whatever they ask when it’s possible and they are inclined to accuse me of ingratitude if I don’t.
Am I being unreasonable here?

Gonegirl Tue 21-May-19 17:45:44

They have not actually boughtyou, you know. Ignore your eldest DD in this instance. Tell her you are accompanying your youngest DD, and son in law will have to do the class. You can't let them pull your strings all the time. Sounds like you do quite enough.

mumofmadboys Tue 21-May-19 17:47:15

I think you are being entirely reasonable. I can see it is a difficult situation if you are staying with DD1. Do you need to take DD3 to the appointment or do you need to look after her children to enable her to go? Can you say you are sorry to your eldest DD but on this occasion after a lot of thought you think you need to help out DD3 at this time? I hope it all settles down for you jen

jenpax Tue 21-May-19 17:57:39

Thanks both, yes my role is watching the children while she goes to the appointment. I have already told her that she will need to have a different appointment time in future weeks and she has agreed, but she was offered this as a non negotiable first step and we both felt she should take it.
2nd DD agreed that it was important too.

DoraMarr Tue 21-May-19 18:00:13

Perhaps the third daughter could act as conciliator in this.

jenpax Tue 21-May-19 18:07:07

Other DD finds both her sisters tricky and is keen to keep out of it and I can’t say I blame her.
I feel like I am treading on egg shells all the time and trying to do the right thing and help everyone but seem to always be making one or other of them angry!

Sara65 Tue 21-May-19 18:13:45

Your situation sounds dreadful jenpax, the sooner you get into your own place the better.

As gonegirl said, they haven’t bought you, you’re not their servant! You sound like you’re doing everything you can to be helpful, in this one instance, do what you think is right and support your younger daughter

If I were you, I’d go and stay in a B and B till you get your new home sorted

Gonegirl Tue 21-May-19 18:15:19

You can't please all of them jenpax. But you must stand up for yourself. You are doing what you believe is the right thing. (Sounds right to me too) I would say, stick to it for this time.

Gonegirl Tue 21-May-19 18:15:58

Your name sounds very peaceable. smile

jenpax Tue 21-May-19 18:24:25

Thanks gone girl ?

EllanVannin Tue 21-May-19 19:28:06

This is what " being under an obligation " is like ! Not nice.

Callistemon Tue 21-May-19 19:33:11

No, you ANBU!

why do some DC expect so much of their parents these days? and get so cross and induce so much guilt when older GP (possibly with health problems) do not 'jump to it?'

can you rent somewhere in the meantime?

rosecarmel Tue 21-May-19 19:42:29

I make every effort, when I remember .., to appreciate what each family member brings to the table, to not treat anyone's offering as more or as less - When I forget to do this, I find myself thinking and acting as though I do more and/or what I offer is better - And as a result "expect" instead of appreciate-

It sounds to me that the daughter you are living with is doing the latter of the two, treating you and her siblings as less-

But what you are doing, is setting a loving example for your daughters to learn from and remember in the years to come-

Sara65 Tue 21-May-19 19:44:51

I agree, I think you should move out, they aren’t treating you very well, maybe they’re unexpectedly finding it a strain having you there, but there is absolutely no excuse for the way they treat you

Book into a B and B, and then look for somewhere to rent, and let them look after their own children

jenpax Wed 22-May-19 06:30:05

Thanks everyone, I have suggested moving out until the house sale and new purchase is completed, but they get cross with this as well as they think it’s a waste of money! I am then accused of not making sensible decisions, and also of not being grateful for what they have done for me etc! I feel as if I can’t win. The irony here is that I didn’t want to move in the first place! I developed cancer and didn’t recover as quickly or easily as I had expected and it was their suggestion that I stay with them until the house sale; and now I am only on sick pay. I am hoping that in time I will be well enough to resume working and get some of my old life back, in the meantime I am treading water

Sara65 Wed 22-May-19 06:44:05

Poor you, sounds very stressful for you.
I still think you’d be better putting some distance between you, it’s not their decision, it’s yours

eazybee Wed 22-May-19 09:36:55

If your son-in-law is 'at home doing chores' then it is his responsibility to get the children to their class. If he is working from home that is a different situation, but even so he should be able to negotiate a one-off absence for child -care.

Your oldest daughter is ridiculous in describing an alteration to her child-care arrangements as emotional abuse when all she is suffering is a minor inconvenience.

It sounds as though the arrival of your youngest daughter on the scene is already causing family discord; perhaps her siblings have suffered from this in the past which is making them so resentful now.

Your middle daughter needs to learn to drive, unless there are particular reasons why she can't, or won't.

You need to move out of your daughter's home as quickly as is convenient for you, but all three daughters, and spouses, need to be reminded gently but firmly that you are not simply cheap child care.

SparklyGrandma Wed 22-May-19 09:43:11

jenpax another aspect to maybe consider is that the offering of CBT may be conditional on the attendance at that first booked appointment.
They will be concerned about people being offered CBT if they can’t make appointments regularly and especially the first one.

Good luck.

Margaux Wed 22-May-19 10:24:20

Sometimes people use terms like 'emotional abuse' because they've read it somewhere and then impulsively use it. I did so on one occasion when I thought it might have helped someone - it didn't - and I forever regretted it afterwards.

You've done nothing wrong. You're trying to do the best for everyone. Please don't take this to heart. If you can, just let it be. You're the Mum and the reasonable adult. Sometimes your adult daughters will be re-living sibling rivalries. Let it blow over. You'll soon have your own home and they'll miss you.

jaylucy Wed 22-May-19 10:28:06

In this instance the CBT appointment should get priority I think as who knows when she will be able to get another one?
It might be a nuisance to your eldest DG, but she should be supporting her sister, not making life even more difficult - after all, if the appointment had been for yourself, would she still be unhelpful?
Really think that you should enquire as to why it is taking so long for your house sale to go through and if this is not dealt with in the next month, look for rented accommodation - if your DD says it's a waste of money, quite frankly, it is none of her business! To help to get yourself back into the swing of working again, see if there is any voluntary placements available - doesn't have to be working in charity shops, there are also admin voluntary jobs available.

SunnySusie Wed 22-May-19 10:45:14

There is no 'emotional abuse' in this situation, using that term is simply escalating something relatively minor into a major issue. It sounds to me as if the two DDs are gearing up for a fight for your time and attention for their own children. Eldest perhaps is concerned you will give less time to her family once the younger sister is living nearby and wants to stake her claim now, feeling she has the right because you are living with her currently. Your DDs are all adults and you should be able to explain your position to them. They might not like it, but if you put the situation clearly as you see it and then stick to your guns they will have to accept it. You are only trying to do what you see as right and fair.

gmelon Wed 22-May-19 10:55:26

Is there a reason not to go back to your own house.
Yes it is being sold but how does that stop you living in it?
The support you are getting for your illness has a very high price and the stress will affect your recovery.
I would just go home.

Jaycee5 Wed 22-May-19 11:05:49

Jenpax They don't want you to move out because it is convenient to have a child minder on hand. You are letting them bully you.
Book a place and then tell them that you have to. As gmelon has said, you can live in a house that is being sold even if you have sold most of your furniture. You might be able to move back there now and maybe go into B&B just befoe you move if you would make it easier. The current situation does not work for you. You have been appreciative of the help you have had but their has been no reciprocation for the help you have given. Tell them that you will still take their child to class as long as it is convenient for you. That should encourage them to be a bit more conciliatory and polite.
The current situation cannot be helping your recovery.

GoldenAge Wed 22-May-19 11:24:38

Actually my advice is a little different - I see this from the viewpoint of the oldest daughter because she is relying on you - you are part of the structure that she has put in place to enable her immediate family's life to run smoothly. You have agreed to be part of that support system so unless you have a e-negotiation of that 'contract' you are obligated to continue. As far as your youngest daughter is concerned, she has moved into a situation which she already knows exists, I agree that she does have needs and that your wish to help her which is admirable should be satisfied, but what length of notice has she given you of her request to get you to change your routine? And your older daughter is correct when he says that the appointment can be changed. I work in the counselling field and I know that people who present for this type of support are often all over the place and do themselves cancel, and re-arrange at the drop of a hat. We are used to this. I suggest you talk with your youngest DD and tell her your time availability, promise her something you can honour such as regular slots of time that don't conflict with your commitments to your eldest daughter, and at the same time tell your eldest daughter that you are entering into this arrangement, so that she can't call on you for emergencies during those times. When you downsize your eldest daughter will have to make new arrangements anyway as it may not be convenient for you to do all the school deliveries/collections. This is all about you creating boundaries in the interests of letting each one of your daughters know that you care for them all, but you do of course need time for yourself and while you may choose to think of time with your grandchildren as fulfilling that for you, you will become tired, so try to plug in something more relaxing - a book club, a walking group, etc. Good luck. You love them all, but like most siblings, they are competitive and make judgements about each other that you as mum don't.

mcem Wed 22-May-19 11:28:32

If seeing to chores means mundane stuff like loading the dishwasher or running the vacuum around, point out that all of that can go on hold!
An initial CBT appointments can't.
Important appointment? Housework chores? Taking care to avoid unnecessary stress?
Or does it boil down to exerting control?