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How do you handle family memebers that tend to undermined you when it comes to your kids?

My in-laws are the worst! Everytime we set rules or discipline (sp) them they always try to change our rules, by saying stuff like... Why don't you let them do this or do that, when we have grounded them from doing those things for a few days.... Or I will say to my SIL, no they need to finish that first before they can have this and she will give it to them anyways! I makes me so freakin mad! I have gotten to the point where I have to repeat myself until they get the freakin hint! Don't know what else to do!


Asked by soonmommyof3 at 4:37 PM on Apr. 23, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (12)
  • My In laws were the same way I finally told them that I was tired of being treated as if my parenting is a joke. I am their mother and you are not. I set the rules and everyone else follows them whether they like it or not. and I also told them that if they couldn't follow them then they wouldn't see my kids but once a month. ( my inlaws were seeing my kids every weekend so once a month was harsh to them) so it worked. they now tell the kids you'll have to ask your mom.... I love it. sometimes you have to be harsh to get it through their thick skulls. good luck. make your point crystal clear.

    Answer by 2wndrfl_btrflys at 4:40 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • do they live near you? if they do you need to sit them down and say look, i understand you are the aunt/grandma whatever but whenever you do this, you are making my child think that it is ok for them to do things that i don't agree with. if you can't follow my rules than they aren't going to be able to see you as often. (try to bend on a few things, they are the grandparents and if you try to bend will be more willing to understand where you are coming from)
    if they don't live near you and the kids only see them every once in awhlie, its kind of a lost cause. sorry, hate to say it, but i have the same issue with my inlaws but we only see them twice a year so i keep my mouth shut. my family though lives near/with us (some live with us some don't) and i had to sit them down and have the talk with them b/c it was ridiculus, they would give her a cookie while i stood there making her plate for dinner!

    Answer by vabchmommy at 4:40 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • yeah the in-laws live very close, like 10 blocks from us.

    Answer by soonmommyof3 at 4:46 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • yeah sit them down and tell them if they don't listen to your rules than they can't see your kids that often. like i said certain rules you'll have to bend for them, and figure out which ones before hand so you can say ummm lets see "the kids can have chocolate at your house only, but when we are at home they aren't allowed to have it" or something like that. that way the inlaws still get to "spoil" them on occasion and it is something you are ok with. know what i mean? that worked for my family and they actually listen and help with my rules now, even when i'm not around, b/c they know there are ways they can spoil her that normally i wouldn't allow. (like every thurs night my dad comes to visit us, and watches survivor w/my brother, she gets to stay up late to see grandpa til he leaves, she gets to eat late b/c they order pizza when it starts, she also gets snacks b4 dinner but only during survivor season)

    Answer by vabchmommy at 4:51 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • I have had this problem in the past too. The worst is when they undermine a person IN FRONT of the children, which only confuses the children. What I started to do was like you, repeat what I was going to do and how it would be (since they are my children and it's my choice). When they express that they don't agree or something like that, I would say....I hear what you are saying, but I am comfortable with my decision. In my mind, it was like talking to the children. Repeat it many times until you get the point that I won't roll over and play dead on these issues. For the most part it has worked out.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:52 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • I tell them that it's my way or no way, and I will not take it! They didn;t like it but when they went 3 months with out seeing my son they decided to follow the rules.

    Answer by EarthMama05 at 5:24 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • SIL hands them something you didn't want them to have....

    Turn to your child as you take it away from them and tell them "I'm so sorry. Your aunt didn't follow the rules so now you can't have it."


    "I'm sorry, Grandma should have asked me or your daddy first."

    But be sure to say it LOUD enough that the ones you WANT to hear it will hear you! Sure, the kids get upset, but it puts the blame on the true guilty party.

    (been there, done it!)

    Answer by TiccledBlue at 5:39 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • I just told my parents that they cant see my son... I have been called all sorts of ugly names, cussed at, and told that I need to seek a "head doctor."

    Answer by richgirljj at 7:21 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • Ground the inlaws! Seriously, they raised their children their way, and you get to raise yours your way. If they cannot respect your rules, then they do not get the pleasure of being with your kids.

    Answer by rkoloms at 8:39 PM on Apr. 23, 2009

  • Plain and simple, I told them that he is my son and I will raise him the way I felt was right. They had their chance to raise their kids and I will have my chance to raise mine. I also told them that if they didn't follow my choices, then they would not be seeing my child until they can respect my wishes. I have stuck to that and we only see our extended family when we have to.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 9:07 PM on Apr. 23, 2009