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mykidsmom

My kids, my rules period.

30 posts in this topic

This was latest between me & MIL. When at her house she thinks it is her house, so her rules. I told her flat out "No... my kids, my rules no matter if they are on the moon or in your house. If I see you letting the little ones play with empty shot glasses in your open liquor cabinet and I say no, you don't get to override me." (I did bring age-appropraite toys for the visit). She told me "my generation" has no respect and she would never have questioned her parents authority. I told her I listened to enough women in her generation complain about having to put up with their own MILs that I chose not to repeat that mistake (thanks to MIL Anonymous). Curious if you feel the same about your house means your rules overide mommy's rules? Obviously I am not talking about letting the rugrats trash the place or the likes.

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I would have told her that apparently her generation was a bunch of pushovers who didn't know when their parents stopped being the authority. Not saying that's how it is. Just saying that that's how she seems to put it. I would have reminded her that she is NOT the authority.

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Some GP's don't understand that "Mommy's rules" apply everywhere - and "Mommy's Rules" trump Grandma's Rules. I think some GP's confuse respect w/obidience. If we don't do it there way or don't do what they say we're being disrespectful. I'm sure every generation of GP's had "issues" with following the parents rules when it comes to the GK's - but for whatever reason it seems like this "generation" of GP's is have a really tough time following/respecting rules for their GK's. It's almost as if once you become a GP rules don't "apply" to you anymore.

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** She told me "my generation" has no respect and she would never have questioned her parents authority. ** "Well, that's you. We're two very different people." Also, if she's not your mother, then she has no grounds for telling you that adult children need to respect parental authority. (And even if she is ... surely there's an expiration date on the "because I'm the mommy!" argument when used on adult children.)

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As a MIL and GM, myself, I think the line between Mom's Rules and Grandma's Rules is, basically, very clear. If Grandma has certain "house rules" that everyone is expected to follow - like "take off your shoes when you come in the house," etc. - then those need to be respected, even if that's not the rule at Mom and Dad's house. But anything pertaining specifically to the kids is up to the parents. And that includes, how they're discplined, what they can and can't eat and what they're allowed to play with. No doubt, there are exceptions and situations where it gets more confusing than that. But IS a boundary there and your MIL definitely crossed it. (She may not realize it, of course, so you may have to discuss it with her further.)

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I think your MIL was out of line! And with my own grandchild I always try to what the parents want done as much as I can when they aren't around. When they are there at my house also. I leave it up to them (The Parents) to see to him. Now I do have house rules. If you want to call them that. Like take the shoes off at the door. And no eating anywhere but the kitchen only ect. But if the GS wants a cookie and Mother says not before dinner. Mother will be listened too. Before my GS was even born I spoke to my Son and DIL about the ONLY THING I personally couldn't handle at MY house. And that is hitting/spanking what ever you want to call it. I didn't do it to my children and I have very strong views on the subject! I told them I'm not telling you how to discipline your child. But if you decide that is what you are going to do. You will have to act like I'm a church building and carry him outside or else where to do it. Thankfully my son strongly disagrees with this form of punishment too. But my DIL is a true southern gal and say's spanking never hurt her. But she don't do it either. But as far as him being in my home and me over riding his parents authority, I wouldn't ever dream of doing that and if my MIL had tried that with me when mine were young I would of responded the same way you did.

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I have that problem with my MIL, and if she gets in my way, I leave with my daughter. Period the end. I will not fight with MIL about it. New rule in my family. Also, I have "family" rules, not house rules.

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When I was the DIL, I never had a problem with either my mom or MIL trying to overide my rules. Oh they made remarks like "If she was my child...." or "If it was me...", but I chose to ignore those statements. Now that I am a mom and a MIL, I try to always go by the parents rules. I do have "house" rules that are for everyone. The only problem I really have is DILs who doesn't enforce my "house" rules. I have plenty of toys at my house for GK's. All I ask is that the parents have GK's pick up when they leave. DIL's lets their kids drag toys all over the house and very seldom make them pick toys up. After they leave, I have to go around the house, cleaning behind them with a bad knee and hip. I also have a nursery with everything babies need. DIL's never had to bring a diaper bag to my house. One rule I have asked, and even made a sign to hang over the changing table "Please don't leave poopy diapers in this room. Wrap and throw in the kitchen trash" because the kitchen trash gets taken out every day. Sometimes the nursery doesn't get used for several days. By then, poopy diapers stink!! DILs continued to throw stinky diapers in the nursery., so I removed the trashcan!!

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** DIL's lets their kids drag toys all over the house and very seldom make them pick toys up. ** What about the children's fathers? Are they more observant of your reasonable rules?

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@ torgeaux.... I was actually talking about when my 2 DILs and GK's come to spend the day. My two sons work in my neighbor-hood, building houses. DILs will bring the GKs and hang out until my sons get off work. Most of the time, sons go straight to their home from work and DILs leaves around that time. Now when they are visiting as a family, both my sons remember the rules from when they were at home. The dads only allow the GK's to get a few toys out at a time, put these back before you get more. So yes, sons do help the GK's pick up toys, and when sons are here, the DIL helps too. Its only when it is the DILs only. I guess I should have made it clear that my DILs are visiting our home a lot more than sons. DH and I have since made it a little easier for kids (and parents) to abide by that rule (because the GKs kept growing in numbers LOL). DH built shelves on the wall, too high for little ones to reach. When they want, say, trucks and cars to play with, we say "Pick up the blocks first and mommy (or daddy, or GM, or GP) will get the basket of cars." We also have a closet with a hook on it. Baby dolls, barbie dolls, accessories, and other toys go in this closet. "When you pick up the books, we can get the dolls out". Puzzles, crayons, paints, games,coloring books,playdoh, and story books goes on high shelves. This has helped a lot!

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My question is, why do you engage her in dialog? It's not up for discussion, as far as I'm concerned.

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My unmarried son had a bright idea. We have 3 refrigerators. Theres two in the kitchen, the main fridge, and the one for anything left over and sodas. GK's aren't allowed to open these refrigerators. The third fridge is in the office off from the kitchen. This is what we call "the kids fridge". Mommys and daddys tells us what the kids can have for snacks and drinks. We all buy what is allowed for this fridge: puddings, jellos, yogurt, juice, fruit, milk, cheese, etc. My DIL's are good about contributing to this fridge. The only rule we have is clean up any spills. I can say between GM, aunt, and the 2 DIL's, we have taught them to do this. The kids will say "I need a paper towel. I made a mess!!" One day, my son stuck a root beer in the fridge for the kids to share. (They aren't allowed soda except as a special treat, and then very little). The oldest one got it out, took one look at it, and said "Grandma!! who put their beer in our fridge?" After explaining it isn't beer, my son divided the root beer among the 4 kids that was here. They loved it!

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Yep - my kids, my rules. Grandma doesn't trump anything. We will respect what rules Mom does have for her own household (and any other family members). So, for my newly vegan SIL's cookout this weekend, we know that for us to bring hot dogs and hamburgers would be rude and against her rules for her house. She also knows that I won't force my kids to eat soy, so they will be fed before we head over. And, when my mom says no jumping on the couches, it means no jumping on her couches, even though they can jump on the couches in their playroom at home. It also means that when I say no TV past 5 pm, it means no TV past 5 pm. The big thing is that there is a mutual respect underlying all of these relationships, so it isn't a big deal. I hate it when I hear a Grandma (or Grandpa, Aunt, Uncle, whoever) out in public doing something that she knows the parents don't want done (like, getting ice cream) and tells the child to just not tell their parents. It breeds mistrust in the relationship. I'm teaching my kids that anyone who wants them to keep any secret from me or DH is not a safe person.

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My FIL said basically the same thing only he screamed it at me and he used curse words and told me there wasn't a thing I could do about it. I said the same thing, No my child, my rules and "there is something I could do about it, we will just stop coming over here, to YOUR house" and we have never been back since then, April 2008. FIL also hasn't seen DD since then as he refused to come to our house to see her so his loss. No one trumps the parents!

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Somehow I posted the last post without finishing it. Anyhow, No one trumps the parents. Just because we are at the ILs house doesn't mean they can say or do whatever they like with my child. That doesn't fly with me. But house rules are different. Rules to protect one's furniture and belongings are one thing, to say my parental say doesn't matter when at someone else's house is just plain crazy and not even healthy for the child. If a parent doesn't have consistency with discipline then the child will learn they can run wild at some else's house. OP I hope you hold this as a boundary and not let her act this way. If it comes down to her not listening to you, overriding your parenting decisions what happens then? Are you going to be able to say no more visits at grandma's only she respects your parental authority no matter where you are? I'd make a plan just in case this happens, that way you don't over or under react.

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I think respect on all sides is necessary. Their rules when it comes to the kids. My rules when it comes to my home. I won't mess with your kids when it comes to food, sleep hours, discipline. But in my house, kids do not jump on the furniture, tease the animals, destroy other people's property. Pick up the toys before you leave (I'll help), and don't keep asking for snacks if you aren't going to but one bite and throw the rest away. There are many rules we agree on...TV time and content, curse words (DS needs to clean up his language here and I don't hold back reminding him how he should talk around children-I think that's a GM's antiquated but acceptable role)and various other situations when you just know it's okay to play the grandma role without offending anyone. I ask first about treats or new activities that I need parental input. Basically, i think if we give the our family members at least the same respect we would give a stranger, we can't go wrong. Would you walk up to someone in the grocery store and tell them how to raise their kids? I would not even do that if the stranger was screaming at or hitting the child. What I would do is intervene in a supportive way. "Wow, raising kids is hard, isn't it? Can I help by walking with you around the store until you both calm down? That usually send the message that there are other ways to handle things without coming off as imposing. If we can get along in families, maybe there really is the possibility for peace in the world.

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Our children must learn there is a different set of rules everywhere they go. We can't go to school with them and over-ride the teacher's rules. Grandparent's homes could be considered equally. Not unsafe things of course, but their house, their own set of rules.

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*Grandparent's homes could be considered equally. Not unsafe things of course, but their house, their own set of rules.* Yeah "common sense" rules like no jumping on furniture, no eating in whatever room, picking up toys/cleaning up after yourself etc. GP's don't get to make their own rules - that go AGAINST the parents rules "just because" it's their home. Before we cut MIL off - we visited her house 2x's w/my oldest (who was between 6-8 months at the time) as soon as we walked in the door and I took him out of his infant carrier she would IMMEDIATELY start trying to shove crap in his mouth that he wasn't eating at that time (pudding, cake frosting, choc. chip cookies) we told her "no he's not going to eat that" MIL would turn around and say "too bad, my house my rules" DH would say "yes it is too bad too bad for you visit is over, c-ya later bye" we packed up and left.

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I set the rules for my house. If you don't like them, don't come to my house, and I'm OK with the fact that I may miss out on visits by some people because they don't like my rules. Likewise for grandparents...you can set the rules in your house. If we don't like them, we won't visit or allow our children to visit. The problem happens when people think they set the rules and that they can subject other grown adults to them just because they say so. The other party is always welcome to walk away.

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My parents are very uptight about their house. They have a hard time having my kids there because they have a lot of fragile and breakable things and my kids are little boys. Whenever we visit I enforce their house rules with my kids even though it's difficult, and definitely cuts down on our visits because it's stressful. I do the same at the ILs', although they have fewer rules. All children should learn how to respect other's personal property and house rules. My parents return the respect by backing DH and I up. If decide on a punishment for something and the kids go whining to Grandma, she's going to tell them to listen to their mom and dad. She respects food requests, TV rules, etc. I never worry about being undermined with my parents. My ILs have zero respect for our rules, or, more specifically, mine. The most recent example was during our last visit. ODS used the work "suck." I don't like that word, and I don't allow my children to use it. It's a clearcut rule that my kids know well, but ODS likes to push. I reminded ODS that he was not allowed to use that word, and he apologized. Then MIL piped up with "Why can't they say sucks? It's not a bad word! And they're going to hear it all the time anyway! I say it all the time." And I said "I don't think that's an appropriate word for children to use, and it's my rule." And lovely MIL said, "Hmmph, WELL, I guess I'm going to have to stop saying it when you guys are then" and stomped off. Respecting other people's rules for their kids is a sign that you respect THEM. When you undermine or ignore the rules, you are sending a clear message that you don't respect them or their parenting choices.

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Whoa whoa whoa lilypond and luv2: I think I am reading that you agree GPs can set the rules carte blanche to go as far as overriding parents morals & values. Is that accurate or am I reading your replies wrong? As I said in my OP I am not talking about property issues, I am talking about parenting instructions like the example I gave... don't let my kids play with breakable glass or in an open liquor cabinet. This has nothing to do with repsect for GPs things, they were in fact being careful, I just don't like seeing my 2 year old pretending to mix drinks while MIL says how cute (gag). So please correct my perception of your replies so I'll sleep better tonight. If you *DO* think that "house rules" trump parents' when it comes to morals & values, than shame on you! Thank you for any clarification you can give.

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I can only speak for myself and the way I was raised. I do not enter my mother's home and trump her rules. I could share my expectations with her and she would honor them. But, if I let my children do something that she felt was not okay, she would tell me that and tell me this is my house. She would show me the door and make me feel like it was my fault. Now, again speaking for myself, I am much more of a disciplinarian than my children are. I tend to make stiffer rules for my grandchildren at my house. They get no soda, minimal snack foods, no riding their bikes in the street. They go to bed at 8:30 and take a bath before hand. They brush their teeth no matter if they are too tired. My children are more lax about things. I always respect the tv rules, food, bedtime etc...but, I do not handle bad language, rude behavior, disrepecting their parents by their tone of voice, jumping on my furniture, rude behavior to my neighbors etc... They will try the vegetable dish no matter what it is. I will speak up and they will obey my rules or not come to my house. If you start them out like that, they won't be so inclined to try to be the boss as they grow. Like I said, I am more stern than my children are. It is those types of things I control in my house. I have been known to tell my one grandson when he whines and says he is going to tell his mother on me, "go ahead, I will put her in the corner too!" It is amazing how fast he minds me after that. I wonder, does a military background with a clear chain of command come into play with some of our families on this forum? How does that make your family different than some of the others? Do you struggle as much with the grandparents and their rules etc...?

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I think that the person who owns the house sets the rules for their house. And that your options are to either come to an agreement where she understands and agrees to enforce your rules, you bend your rules, or you don't go to her house. If a MIL came here and asked how to get her DIL to do X, we'd tell her that she can't. She cannot control the actions of her DIL because she is an adult. Likewise, you can't control the actions of your MIL...you can only control your reactions. Do I think you and your parter/DH/whatever have full and total authority over your kids? Yes. Do I think it would be swell if your MIL agreed to enforce your limitations? Yes. Do I think kids should be playing in a liquor cabinet? Heck no. But it doesn't matter what I think or what would be swell, the fact of the matter is your MIL is an adult, it's her house, and she can say what she wants. And what you should do is leave. And if she wants to see you at her house, then her rules need to change and if she doesn't then they don't. But I don't think she has to change her way of doing things in her home anymore than I think you have to change hers. She just has to be willing to accept the consequences....which in most are too high so the grandma changes the rules.

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But I don't think she has to change her way of doing things in her home anymore than I think you have to change hers that should read "you have to change yours".

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@luv2: I too am the disciplinarian in the family which is why MIL & I don't get along. She thinks there does not have to be *ANY* rules at her house since she is the GM. Thanks for the clarification, looks like we are in the same boat. @lilypond: simple yet brilliant. I like your take on it, I don't know why it never dawned on me to just take the kids and leave her house. I guess I was just trying to make nicey too much till the dam broke and got she & me both all wet. this is why I like this group of gals so much. Y'all got gumption, something I am lacking but trying to get. Then I go and stick my foot in it. Wish I had one of those mobile phones I could quick type in my question and have the right answer in the moment, not days later and I'm kickin myself for not being too bright.

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