- 7 years ago
- Wedding: February 2010
This is going to sound SO weird, but I honestly don’t know what to make of it.
My good friend had a baby last October. She didn’t let us see the baby right away. We totally understood. I would ask every few weeks or so if I could come over just to meet her son and maybe have a cup of coffee with her since she was spending all her hours at home. She would always say that it wouldn’t be a good idea because the baby wasn’t used to new people, or couldn’t handle females, or males, or didn’t like strange smells, or wasn’t sleeping at any point during the day. These are all things I don’t understand since I don’t have a child, so I totally gave her a pass on all these things.
A year went by. Not once were we allowed to come by – and she always had a reason that related to what the child could tolerate. They never went anywhere (no walks, no outings, no parties, no nothing) so we could never see them. She would never leave him with a sitter, with her husband, or even with her nanny so we could make plans for coffee.
I used to see all sorts of other friends with their 1+ year olds, so I was really confused and irrationally hurt. I was actually hurt but I have no right to be. Weird, huh?
We finally were granted permission to see him once. She told me we would have a walk around the block for a bit and then we would have coffee while he played with his toys. It turned into a 3 hour excursion to the park down the street because she doesn’t like to tell him where to walk, or what to play with, so every leaf that caught his attention had us stopping. We were happy to just be outside, so we didn’t mind. By the time we got home, there was no coffee because we had to leave.
Oh, did I mention that my friend and I can’t talk while she’s with her son, because she’s talking to him nonstop in her native language? She tells me that if he doesnt hear her voice constantly he gets disoriented and upset, so you talk while she’s talking to him nonstop and occasionally stops to say, “I’m listening.”
It is now February. I went over yesterday to say hello and waved through her kitchen window. She then opened the kitchen window and whispered through the screen door that he was sleeping so she couldn’t open the door to let me in and I would have to come back another time when he wasn’t asleep. When I did return, the boy was fine for a few seconds, but when I didn’t obey his request for “bye bye” (get out), he began to cry and away went my friend with her boy into another room. She didn’t come back and I had to get going, so I let myself out.
We were invited to a tea party once with other friends (moms) who brought their kiddos. The kids either played, or sat in their high chairs and napped while we had tea and chatted. This friend arrived, but immediately took her son into another room to calm him down (he didn’t seem upset), and then an hour later she joined us but couldn’t eat anything we had for her because it contained sugar and her son WILL eat off her plate and he can’t have those things. So, she set him down in a high chair and as soon as he was nodding off (it was his naptime), she decided he should be laid in a crib to sleep. He couldn’t sleep, she decided he should take a walk – this is not her neighborhood, btw. So, she borrowed a stroller and we didn’t see her for 3 hours. We actually sent a husband out to look for her in the end.
I guess this is all to say that I’m angry for some reason that I can’t spend any time with her at all but I have no idea if I have any right to be angry. I just don’t like that my friend had a child and suddenly we can’t enjoy each other’s company at all. It sometimes becomes borderline annoying/offensive/strange – I invited her over and she brought her son. He began to cry at my front door, so she decided to leave. Because he began to cry. I had tea, I had baked….
But what can you say?! I hear that criticizing parenting is the DEATH KNOLL for a friendship. I feel like I have to just have a big smile all the time.
She speaks in “we.” She never says “I.” How are you today? “We’re good! We have a pediatrician’s appointment tomorrow.” “No, Friend, how are YOU?”
I have been such a good and tolerant friend to her since she had her child. Countless gifts for the baby that we were told to “set down on the table” because if we got too close her son would start crying, countless invitations into our home or to low-key events, countless offers to BABYSIT so she and her husband could go out together (something they have not done once since he was born, not even for dinner), countless rides to Babys R Us or Whole Foods or the Airport, or whatever else. I feel totally tapped, but I don’t know if I’m just heartless to want to cut this one loose.