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Old 14 July 2014, 02:42 AM
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Default Things you shouldn't have to tell people

Quote:
Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
This is true.

It is also true that if you are repeatedly pissy to people you are trying to help, they may reject your help.
Relatedly, if you insist on giving 'help' that isn't asked for and makes things harder, even when you're told that the recipient appreciates the thought but would rather do it the other way, and then making yourself a huge martyr over it, don't be surprised that no one is gushing thanks.
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Old 14 July 2014, 03:25 AM
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That sounds very complicated.
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Old 14 July 2014, 01:28 PM
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Examples: show up to 'help' by watching the kids for adults to catch up on lost sleep after a new baby, but do so by playing with the kids so loudly that no one can sleep. Do this despite being told thanks but no.

Offer to take the toddler on a two-day trip 'to give y'all a break'. Be told no, we don't like him gone that long. Suggest just an afternoon, then. Keep him overnight anyway.

Offer to have a neighbor look at the person's malfunctioning vehicle. Insist until the person agrees, but says not to let them actually *do* anything yet, since kids have appointments the week coming up. Call the person to tell her the vehicle is thoroughly disassembled and will be ready in a week or more because the part isn't available.

Bring a person large quantities of food at a child's baseballl game, despite being told before that 1)we can't eat that kind of stuff without plates and cutlery, 2) we feel uncomfortable eating like that in front of people who don't have a big meal there, 3) it's very hot out and that shouldn't sit outside for hours, 4) we have to be here through 2-4 games in a row, 5) thank you so much, it was so thoughtful, but please don't. Repeat through the next several game weekends.

All things so well-meant, but that just make things complicated- like having to lug four grocery bags of prepared food back to the car, wondering if it's still good to eat, alongside a stroller and a toddler. After explaining to the toddler for hours why he can't eat it.

And you can't tell that person "I asked you not to...." because then you'll make her fall apart and cry, and you'll be the bad guy, and you'll be the unappreciative meanie who just couldn't accept a favor.
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Old 14 July 2014, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjustasteph View Post
Offer to take the toddler on a two-day trip 'to give y'all a break'. Be told no, we don't like him gone that long. Suggest just an afternoon, then. Keep him overnight anyway.
That's kidnapping. Call the police.
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Old 14 July 2014, 02:10 PM
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It's his grandmother. Calling the police is excessive, especially if I want to keep a good relationship with her. Instead, I dealt with it for that time, and now when she asks if he can go, I tell her he can't go at all, because I can't deal with him being gone that long. That won't last long, because he's starting to ask to go, but it works for now.
  #6  
Old 14 July 2014, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjustasteph View Post
And you can't tell that person "I asked you not to...." because then you'll make her fall apart and cry, and you'll be the bad guy, and you'll be the unappreciative meanie who just couldn't accept a favor.
So?

Seriously. So?

If you don't start enforcing boundaries with her, she will continue to do this. She's the one being rude. Refuse her offers entirely and then let her be uncomfortable. I am a big fan of Captain Awkward, and she has a lot of advice in her archives about these kinds of situations.
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Old 14 July 2014, 07:13 PM
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It's extremely hard to set boundaries with your in-laws (I am assuming this is not your mother) and the only way it really works is if your husband is on board with it. IME he should be the one making these kinds of issues clear with his parents. Otherwise you are so caught in the middle and that never ends well.
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Old 14 July 2014, 08:08 PM
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I am with Aimee. My MIL has used emotional blackmail on my wife for many years, until finally I let my wife know MIL was just not welcome around me due to her abusive behavior, and that it was harmful to the kids to be exposed to that. That lead my wife to just say "NO" to some of her mom's demands. Cue crying poor old woman, who just wanted to help out, to show her love, who has done SO much for you, always just given, etc. My wife stood firm, and her mom now pulls a lot less of that crap.
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Old 14 July 2014, 10:30 PM
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FWIW, Steph didn't say this was an in-law issue.
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Old 14 July 2014, 11:26 PM
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I am a big proponent of setting boundaries and letting the chips fall where they may as far as abusive, emotionally immature, manipulative, etc. people. It can have its limits though, especially with in-laws. SO and I had a united front about setting boundaries with her mom since just before the ertwins were born. There's been friction, but we thought it was going OK. On the last visit, MIL brought up every single instance during that time and said that we were rejecting her, she didn't feel welcome, and felt she was walking on eggshells.

That would be fine, and her problem, except that she says she might not visit anymore because of it. Which I would be fine with calling her on--just saying that that would be her choice if she cuts us off--but SO would be devastated by that. So we now need to see if we can pick our battles so that we are setting the crucial health and safety type boundaries, but trying to let go of the things where we can. It still might not work, because to a large degree MIL lives in a reality of her own creation, but if we do get cut off, SO needs to be able to know that she didn't "cause it" or if it is over us setting a boundary that it was an essential one.

That may not be where we stay with it, but I just wanted to say that setting boundaries is great with people who respond in ways you're willing to live with, but as I say, there are also times to pick your battles.

We're going to try a campaign of positive reinforcement for a bit and see how that goes.
  #11  
Old 15 July 2014, 02:13 AM
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No, Lainie's got the right of it- it's my mom. And there is very little point in drawing lines most of the time, because she will promptly forget them and be all confused, so the main thing is to figure out which stuff I can stand, and head off the other stuff beforehand. Like, in that situation, I figured that she would keep him anyway [she went to my sister's, or I'd've just gone and gotten him], and I decided to wait and see, and let that decide future interactions. I've twice since not let him go with her, because, "No, we have things going on in a couple of days." "But It's just this afternoon!" "Still, sometimes you decide to stay longer, and we just can't work around that in this case." Or, "No, he can't go. I can't be apart from him that long. I just can't do that."

After I reinforce it that way for a while, I'll let her take him for a predetermined period of time to a place I can find my way to (as compared to my sister's place; she moved an hour away to a city I don't understand), and go get him if necessary, and go on from there. She wants him for an afternoon before his birthday, so maybe that's the time. If she keeps him longer than agreed, then I stop letting him go again.

I promise I'm not going to let her walk over me and take control, but I'm pretty familiar with the type of finesse getting things through to her takes. (Which doesn't mean I won't rant and gripe about it a little, especially when it's repeated.)
  #12  
Old 24 July 2014, 10:25 PM
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If you insist on talking smack about your ex-husband to people who are trying to remain friends with both of you, then you can't really be surprised that eventually, some of what you say gets back to him, and he calls you out on it.

You want to rant about your ex, fine. You want him to not find out? Then save the ranting for people who don't know him.

Magdalene
  #13  
Old 25 July 2014, 07:05 PM
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If you ask a person multiple times if they want you to bring them lunch and she tells you, "No" multiple times, you can't get annoyed when she tells you that she isn't hungry when you get home with food.
  #14  
Old 27 July 2014, 01:43 AM
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there is absolutely no reason for a 16 year old to be cuddling in his bed with a girlfriend.
  #15  
Old 27 July 2014, 02:36 AM
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I can think of a few that don't have to do with sexual situations. (I am of course assuming that the possibility of sexual activity is what has you not ok with this?)
  #16  
Old 27 July 2014, 03:03 AM
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If you are a cyclist, and you are riding slowly in the traffic lane, when there is a perfectly good cycle lane right there which is empty, you are definitely making a point. I do not think the point you are making is the point you think you are making though.
  #17  
Old 27 July 2014, 03:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyLockeout View Post
I can think of a few that don't have to do with sexual situations. (I am of course assuming that the possibility of sexual activity is what has you not ok with this?)
they can cuddle on the couch -- just not in his bedroom -- and what is a reasonable situation for two 16 year olds to cuddle in a bed -- (the boy is my son btw)
i was a 16 year old boy once myself -- and can't think of any reasonable cause for needing to cuddle in a bed.
  #18  
Old 27 July 2014, 03:34 AM
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it sounds like your mind is already made up *shrug*. If you really want to know, I'll pm you my personal situations, but it doesn't seem like it's going to change anything.

It's your home, your rules.
  #19  
Old 27 July 2014, 03:36 AM
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Quote:
i was a 16 year old boy once myself -- and can't think of any reasonable cause for needing to cuddle in a bed.
Because you care about a person and would like to cuddle with them? Because you're a teenager who would like to learn how to interact in a relationship?

I seriously don't see what the problem is, but I'm totally fine with 16-year-olds having consensual sex, so you probably don't want my opinion.
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Old 27 July 2014, 03:59 AM
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It doesn't matter what the reasons for cuddling are, if the rule of the house is that you don't bring your girlfriend/boyfriend into your bedroom then you don't bring your girlfriend/boyfriend into your bedroom.
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