Ugh. I want to reply to comments from my last posts, and even though I have read most posts in my feed, I haven’t commented. I want to, I am just drained and overwhelmed right now.
My mother in law….ugh. She is crazy, cruel, insane. Truly irrational. I don’t even have the energy to type out the story, so I am simply going to post the email I sent Bea (which contains emails written between hubby and his mom) and her response.
I texted her this afternoon, asking her to call me. It’s rare for me to reach out like that, but this woman, hubby’s mom who I will call Betsy, threatened to go to court and take my child away from me. I believed for a moment that she could. I couldn’t breathe. Bea called, and promised me that Betsy did not have the power to do that. I believed her. She rationally went through why that will not happen. She asked if she could read the emails, and I sent them to her. Here they are.
Thank you for calling me. I just really needed to hear that she can not take Kat from me, and I trust what you say. So thank you.
Here are the emails between hubby and his mom. I put a _____ between emails. I had to add some thoughts, in italics, because….well..I don’t know. I guess I still feel like I have to prove I’m not this terrible person she says I am. I don’t know.
Anyway, here are the emails.
I think we owe each other a mutual apology. I apologize for showing my anger at you, esp. with the bad language.
You also owe me an apology for demanding that I respond like your child or your dog and show up at your feet in order to be disciplined. Please DO NOT ever treat me like that again because you have no right to do that. A son should never speak to his mother like that.
You never asked me what happened. Shame! The fact-finding should be the first thing to search for, per your training. I have known Alice to tell lies so I will never accept her version of anything. She lies whenever it suits her needs. Her fault lies with spoiling her child’s birthday party by making a small thing a big thing. As usual. Shame to her also. She can be a terrible mother, putting her own needs above her child’s. Shame on her.
It didn’t have to be a big thing, all Betsy had to do was say “okay” and leave Kat be. She turned it into a thing by saying I only wanted Kat to be independent because I did not want to have to parent my child.
The facts: That bounce house was harder than the others and it took cousins a long time to get thru it the nite before. I watched Kat struggle up the wall steps in the 1st part because rain or something had pooled on the bottom and her feet were wet when they should have been dry. She kept slipping.
She said nothing about her belief Kat’s feet were wet to me or to hubby that day. I feel like this is just some excuse for how she acted. I don’t know.
Then when she got up the wall, she could see the next section was a repeat but there were no kids before her or right after her to show her it was achievable. She paniced (Kat panicked when Betsy got anxious and began freaking out asking the attendant if a 5 year old could do it) and asked if I would help her. (Betsy asked Kat if she needed Oma’s help) I said okay, but let me check.
Remember, I’d already seen the slippery water problem on her feet and also remembered cousins finding it more difficult. I asked the boy/monitor if a 5-yr-old could do the inside okay by themselves and he hesitated (I believe he hesitates because of how anxious/loud Betsy was being) but then he said yes. So I would have defaulted to just coaching her thru. When it was taking a lonnggg time for her to advance, I traded in line at the bungee jump so cousins could go guide her thru to the finish. (Kat had been through twice on her own by the time the cousins- came over there)
NO mother is unfamiliar with the concept of motivational achievement in a young child. Alice is just late in dealing with it. (What does this even mean????) BUT never should a child be put in a possibly trauma-instilled situation, esp. not all by herself.
Again, too bad both she and you had to make a federal case on her b-day party. And what did all the other guys in the family do to deserve you guys just leaving without saying anything? Please, please don’t become like Alice. God has married you to her for a reason. We only hope it is to make her a better, more responsible adult.
I was originally going to call you as per a usual Tuesday, but let’s face it – it would be a rather unpleasant conversation. Maybe I’ll feel different next week. You are my Mom and I love you which makes this even more difficult to write. I appreciate your apology for the way you acted towards me and I apologize as well for barking an order at you. It was your “I’d like to hear a response from Kat rather than her mother” comment that set me off. If a child’s parent gives you a response on their behalf, it is for a reason. Kat told you 3 times that she did not want to do the bungee jump but you didn’t listen or respect her decision so Alice responded for you.
With that being said…. here are my issues:
You are a grandmother, who at a church function, told me that my wife can go F herself. And you very specifically stated that you will do whatever YOU think is best for Kat, even when it goes against what we say. What makes you think that I am going to stick around and pretend everything is fine? I’m thankful that Kat did not witness that.
You have perpetually undermined our parenting and do whatever you want or “think is best” for Kat without even listening or taking a second to ask us. These decisions are not yours to make. We have a very qualified team that is built upon supporting Kat and her needs. They constantly compliment us on the progress she has made the obstacles she has overcome. Based on your attitude towards Alice and the actions I’ve seen it is clear that you don’t respect our parenting and as a result I am making the decision that you can see Kat on holidays and birthdays only at this point. If any other person who I trusted with Kat told me that “they will do whatever THEY think is best” – rather than listen to an instruction from the parent, I assure you – they would not be watching Kat again. (She says this all the time, acts like we make bad choices for Kat, acts like I don’t care about/love my own child, does what she wants and then claims it was because she loves Kat more than we do. In hubby’s own words: “mom refuses to accept that Kat is autistic. Alice has forwarded articles and recommended books and mom refuses to read them. Because if she doesn’t accept it, it won’t be true. Mom believes she is an expert based on some child development class from the 80’s.” )
You don’t have to like Alice but understand that she is Kat mother and my wife who I love dearly so I would suggest not insulting her intelligence, maturity, or responsibility. Kat is an exceptional child and lives a very happy life. It is not your place to judge or question our parenting.
We have been working very hard on building Kat confidence so that she can become more independent and also go to camp and school by herself. We have made significant progress with this. By you treating her as if she were a baby/borderline infant it results in her acting like one for days after… not wanting to put her shoes on, clean up a small thing, follow simple directions, ect. Our BCBA, ABA techs, and Kat’s therapist can all tell very quickly when Kat has been at Oma’s the day before, simply based on her behavior. And then you insult our parenting…. It’s simply unacceptable.
You said that you didn’t know if a 5 year old could do that bounce house and that there is some large hole in it, but yet in the same breath you tell me that cousins both went through it the day before?
And what is with this “making a federal case”? Anytime we try to tell you something with a situation that could have been handled differently you don’t accept responsibility but rather you play the victim card.
We – Dad, Pop and I – are shocked and sickened that Alice’s poison has infiltrated your heart. We raised you better. Dad wants to talk to you in person. you have broken our hearts.
We always knew Alice would like nothing better than to alienate Kat from us and you from your family. (This is just not true I don’t want her crazy influencing Kat, but I have always tried to keep hubby involved with his family. He is the one who says no to my suggestion of visits or invites) . If you continue with the seeing-Kat restriction, here’s what will happen:
We will ask our entire family, incl. all those in (other town), not to see you any more. We will fill them all in on Alice’s crazy behaviors thru the years, and how this punishment doesn’t remotely fit the “crime” (yes again). But it does fit her agenda. (I have NO agenda, except keeping Kat safe and emotionally healthy, and confident in herself.) They will be sickened as we are. (We all, incl. the (other town) group, always suspected this threat would come if we didnt kiss her ass enuf – in fact THEY warned us she would be like that and we said – oh no, our son would never let such an insane thing happen). (I don’t know who ever thought that, I have always supported hubby seeing his family, and only ever asked that he stand up for me and not allow his mom to talk to me/ treat me the way she has. We had a horrible fight when I was pregnant, and I avoided Betsy for months. But I have always gone out of my way to encourage hubby to spend time with his family.)
2nd, we will get a very good attorney, and ask for a court case, and get a restriction that (1) Alice needs to stay away from all of us, and (2) that we have a right as grandparents, having not harmed Kat, and will gain custody of Kat. Alice will not see that child again.
We will sell the house for the money to do that, if we have to. We care about Kat’s safety, and Alice is not safe or loving.
Is that clear?
Again, to everyone else the Q is, what’s the horrible crime here? My words on Sunday were to say that I will never leave a grandchild of mine in jeopardy where I see possible danger. And that since the motivational push to get Kat thru some new-activity fears DID work when she went down the water slide with me at park , (and we asked Betsy to leave Kat alone on the water slide as well and to allow her to go on her own, and show confidence that Kat can do it on her own. Instead, she continued telling Kat she needed help, and it was when we put our foot down and were harsh with Betsy, telling her to let Kat be, that she left Kat alone to go down the slide on her own) following her cousins, how would that same logic not work at the bungee jump, which she did before with her cousins also? Also, I said f— it in extreme exasperation that once again, Alice’s immature, inconsistent take on things was screwing everybody up.
If there is inconsistentancy, it is because of Betty’s behavior— she acts respectful and kind, we respond to that and begin to trust her. She then takes advantage of that trust, and does what she wants, and then we revoke privileges of seeing Kat without supervision, ext.
This whole thing makes me so mad on so many level. And guilty, and awful and just….ugh. I don’t know. And I’m mad because I wanted to talk about the Ferris wheel on Thursday morning, but now this needs to be worked through. Ugh!!
And, Bea’s response:
Wow! I am so sorry that you guys are dealing with this. There is nothing rational about anything she is saying. I don’t know how you could ever have any sort of relationship with her after she said these things about you–and I do see why hubby was trying to protect you from them. I feel for both of you, and if hubby needs someone on the outside to hash this all out with I’d be happy to meet with him. That’s just vicious and mean!
So, that is what I have been dealing with since Sunday. Ugh. 😥