I guess my family isn’t exactly the Focker family, but i find their visits incredibly stressful. especially my mother’s visits. I’ve read countless articles about getting along with your mother and that you have to weed out the bad and find the good, and then focus on the good. i find that very very hard.
my mother and i usually don’t see eye to eye on ANYTHING. so, we argue, and most of our arguments revolve around discipline. she doesn’t believe in it. at all. my mother’s way of disciplining is raising her voice as loud as she can, and then screaming. then she talks to herself. she doesn’t like when we punish or discipline our children in any way.
for example, at bedtime, i get very frustrated with the girl. if you frequent my blog, this would not be news to you. so, instead of letting us deal with her, my mother chimes in, “oh, let me go and get her. it’s not fair to make her go to sleep.” um, yeah, that’s going to help. and then, because she can’t handle it, she goes into this mode where she doesn’t want anyone to talk to her or look at her because she’s in her “i can’t handle this mode.” it’s incredibly childish, but you must understand that my mother was the only child of two holocaust survivors – she never was punished and always got what she wanted. and since she was an only child, it was always her way. and she can’t handle that now.
but, of course, i can’t let things like this go. i always say something like, “you have to let me deal with my children.” and then she gets even angrier. true, i probably should just keep my mouth shut, and let her continue being the baby, but i just don’t see how it’s fair that she always gets to be the baby and everyone’s okay with that. she’s 55, for heaven’s sake.
the only thing we do well together is shop. so, that’s pretty much all we do when we are together.
my stepdad, on the other hand, suffers from “old man syndrome.” he likes to sit on the couch (either reading or watching tv) and eat. and that’s pretty much it. occasionally he’ll step up and pay some attention to the kids, but mostly it’s about relaxation on the couch. My only beef with him really is that his manners are disgusting. he talks with his mouth full, he doesn’t use plates and leaves crumbs everywhere, he waltzes through my house with muddy boots – leaving mud tracks all over my kitchen…you get the idea.
but, i held my cool for the most part. and now it’s over. until April, when it happens all over again.