- 5 years ago
- Wedding: May 2012
My in-laws are good people. I know that they mean well, they really value family over anything, and they want to be as helpful as possible. I’ve been observing them when they’ve been around their grandchild (they only have one right now). DH and I are starting about TTC soon, and I’ve been noticing a few more things about my in-laws.
For one thing, when the aforementioned grandchild was born, my SIL was in the hospital for about 4 days. My in-laws would spend multiple hours at the hospital each day. They would spend anywhere from 3-5 hours, sitting in her room each day. By day 3 (and realizing how much time that people were up there), I asked my DH (when it was just the two of us) if we should really be going up there, that SIL probably needs her rest, and I didn’t want to overstay my welcome. DH seemed to think everything was okay (I also think DH was trying to spend as much time as possible with his nephew, because at this time, DH was living out of town). That made me uncomfortable, because I will be honest…with the exception of DH, I don’t think I want anyone hanging out for that many hours, each day I’m in the hospital!
As their grandchild has gotten older, my in-laws jump in and take care of things, even when the parents are in the room. I should also mention that my in-laws watch this grandchild multiple times in a week, so they definitely get time. If said grandchild starts to cry, they swoop in to comfort him (even with his parents in the room and one or both of them heading over to see what’s wrong). If their grandchild needs to be fed or changed, my father-in-law or mother-in-law will insist on taking care of the situation.
Finally, on Easter, their grandchild was having (what I am assuming) to be his first Easter egg hunt. My FIL stepped in and was walking around with him on the egg hunt. I felt like they cut the parents out of the picture. My BIL and SIL didn’t seem to mind, but I’m wondering if they did one beforehand (SIL has been upset about our in-laws taking their grandchild to things that they specifically wanted to do first with him).
I don’t want to discourage my in-laws at all with having a role in their future grandchild’s life. Like I said earlier, they are good people, and I truly know that they mean well. However, I do think some boundaries need to be set. I also know that I could feel very different about some of these things when we have our own child and I have experienced some of these events (changing diapers, comforting cries, etc.) numerous times! I’m not sure if my husband completely realizes my feelings on things. What is the best way to set boundaries fairly? I don’t want to shut anybody out, but at the same time, I want our family time and our decisions as parents to be respected.