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Pregnancy and family dilemma

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12 years 4 months ago #45629 by Dreamy
Thank you romd,Your words have been really helpful.I guess you are right that i shall have to disclose that i'm pregnant sooner or later.I think i haven't healed from the reaction that my first born received .It's so embedded in me .They say forgive and forget .I don't know why that phrase doesn't work for me
.I know what you mean about the tears .Only your family has that capability to burst you in tears any time they open that mouth .
When i wrote in the forum ,i was thinking maybe i have made mistakes which i obviously can't see and neutral people can see them and probably guide me.
I guess i don't sound that crazy to anyone around here so i guess nothing major is wrong with me .
Actually my Mom does not call me as often as she used to ,y'know and i honestly do miss her in my life .I don't miss my Dad as much .He has told Mom not to call me as often .I understand he needs her and is not willing to share her .I just couldn't comprehend how a relationship between a mother and daughter can change so much just because of marriage .
Romd,I agree i will have to find a way to sneak in the news while standing firm .I hope i can do that .Thank you so much for your kind and wonderful advice .

drpurple,i guess you in a similar kind of situation .It is hard to have total lack of emotional support from your family .Please try to make sure that you never let your mother talk about abortion .That talk has haunted my mind ever since .She had said that to me with my first one even though she might be reciting my Dad's words.
I couldn't understand how parents could ever wish for their grandchild to not exist .Was i such a source of unhappiness for them and obstacle in their career that they learned from having me that kids are not necessary ??
Maybe they always regreted having me and i must have been in the way of their dreams .Although they did everything for me and never showed the remorse while i was growing up.
That does make me doubt my existence altogether
Yeah ,my Mom said no one should have a girl cause they get stuck in these kinda of situations .
I have a girl and wouldn't mind another one .I love my girl more than anything in the entire world .Just looking at her in the morning makes me feel how blessed i am .I don't know what i would have if i never had her .She has truly shown me what love really means .Just today as i left her at daycare and was going to my car ,she said loudly "i love you ,Mommy '.I don't know how i could be happy without having my daughter .
Drpurple ,if you desire a child ,i wish you all the best .It's the most wonderful feeling to be amother and entire wealth of the world can't beat that feeling of being loved & loving someone so much .

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12 years 4 months ago #45630 by Sweet
Dear Dreamy...

It appears that there are several of us in similar situations here - I haven't posted in a while but your thread is compelling.

First, I would recommend counting your blessings and never forgetting to think of them and smile:
- The fact that your parents blessed your marriage is a great blessing (I have been with my hubby for 12 years now and my mother still tries to talk me into leaving him in EACH and EVERY conversation I have with her).
- You have a healthy and happy child - that is the greatest blessing of all and there are so many wonderful women who would give half their lives to be blessed with a healthy and happy child.
- You are pregnant with your next miracle. Congratulations!!!
- Etc. etc. etc.

My first instinct, as I read your initial post, was to ask about cultural issues (and Baby Einstein beat me to it - great minds think alike! ;) ) I am originally from Eastern Europe and my mother is a successful and established scientist who has been very career-oriented and has had great expectations for me throughout my life. In each of our conversations she makes it amply clear how terribly disappointed she is in the way I have "failed" in my career aspirations. Not only does she refer to the past, but she also talks about the fact that the future is looking bleak - because I am getting too old (I'm almost 32), and because I have the burden of my family "weighing" me down like a "100 ton anchor" (her words). She regularly and harshly stresses the point that I am a complete failure in life and will never amount to anything.

The one major difference is that she is absolutely crazy about my kids - they are the light of her life, yet, as odd as this sounds, she resents me for having had them when I did (young - first one at 22, second at 27).

Furthermore, I can relate to you regarding the abortion discussion - when I was pregnant with my first, my mother called me nearly every day or talked to me in person (from the day she found out, when I was 12 weeks) until the 6th month of my pregnancy trying to convince me to have an abortion. She even enlisted friends and family members, whom she convinced that this was a terrible situation for me (unbeknownst to me and behind my back), and I would get phone calls from them (completely out of the blue, people I hadn't talked to in months or even years in some cases) about their "concerns" of how I was ruining my life.

Things were better with my second pregnancy - although she did make it amply clear that she was utterly disappointed and disapproving of it in indirect or non-verbal ways, she did not say anything negative. I hope it will be easier for you too, the second time around.

The one thing I have learned from all this (and after having shed many tears, just like romd) is how to be a better parent. I have also come to the realization that I will never be able to change my mom, or her outlook, or her philosophy of life, but... I can change my reactions to her, I can change my responses. I have come to the realization that I had been trapped in my mother's disappointment - I was nearly destroyed (internally) as a result of her "caring" criticism, which had undermined my confidence so much and in so many ways that failure had become a self-fulfilling prophecy. The situation is oddly dichotomous... simultaneously so perverse and so touching... because the reason they are so critical is the fact that they love us so much - they believe we are so incredible and so gifted, that we must be the brightest stars shining in the human sky, they expect the most incredible feats from us. Unfortunately, that is a terrible burden to place on a child - whether the child is small or grown, yet they are too blinded by their parental ambitions to realize this. This aspect of their love is toxic!

The first step towards liberation is to learn to love yourself and to separate your self-love from your parents, from their love, from their approval. Then, it is important to believe in yourself.

I have hammered this post out in a rush, so I apologize for the rambling and for any typos (no time to proofread). I will come back if I can formulate more thoughtful and concise points later... Again, sorry about the rambling, but this really touched a chord (a few chords) in me...

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12 years 4 months ago #45631 by Beth056
I can't believe so many other people are experiencing this! Up to now, I thought I was the only woman whose mother worked so hard to prevent her from having children. My friends all assume I'm exaggerating, especially since my mom constantly tells everyone that she's proud of me. She tried to talk me out of going to medical school, but now she loves hearing about it. She has adored my husband since the moment she met him.

I'm 28 and just finished my first year of medical school. My mom won't believe me because she's sure that I'm overstressing myself, but thus far, I'm so much happier than before medical school because I finally feel certain that I'm on the right path. My mom's not like the career-driven moms the rest of you describe. She was a stay-at-home mom who believes that a woman can not both have a career and be a decent mom. I must choose one or the other, and clearly I've already made my choice. It would be horribly irresponsible for me to have kids. Besides, kids take so much time, effort, and money. Recently she told me, "Sure you love them once you have them, but all in all, they just aren't worth it." Can you believe that a mom would say this to her daughter?

I don't have kids yet, but I've had the baby bug for about a year now. I'm holding off on trying at least until after Step 1, but I don't think I'll make it much longer. She senses this. Every conversation she sneaks in some comment about how she feels sorry for the children of women who work as hard as I do. She's so glad that I'm smart enough to not add children to the mix. A couple weeks ago, we were visiting with a cousin who just had a baby. At one point, the baby started crying while my husband was holding him. My husband didn't know what to do, so I took the baby, held him close and bounced him a bit. He quickly stopped crying and started smiling. My husband looked at me affectionately and made some comment about my great maternal instinct. It was, briefly, a very sweet moment. My mom promptly starting criticizing how I held the baby, acting as if I was endangering him, and wouldn't let me near him again for the rest of the visit! The baby's mother, who is quite protective as it took her 7 years to succeed in having a child, made a point to tell me that I was a natural.

My husband loves kids. He says that he'd love to be a stay at home dad or to work part-time, and he's certain that I'll be a great mom. We have lots of friends in the area who are planning on having kids in the near future. We've already discussed the possibility of sharing child care with several of them. I don't think that I could be much luckier with respect to the support I have from others in the area. I think my children would be very much loved and have many people looking out for them. But it just hurts so much to know that my own mom will always believe that I'm wrong to have children and that I'm a horrible mother. I had never even thought about her suggesting abortion. That's just absolutely mortifying. I'm so sorry, Dreamy and Sweet, that you have had to hear that from your parents. I can't even imagine how painful that would be.

Sorry for the rant, but this topic really got under my skin. It's horrible that other people have to put up with this, but it's also comforting that others are talking about it and know how it feels. I wish all of you healthy babies, adoring husbands, and the strenth to be confident that you know what's best for your own families.

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12 years 4 months ago #45632 by romd
It's surprising, and at the same time comforting, to hear how similar all these mothers are, and how similar we, as daughters, react to them! I especially relate to many of the things you said, sweet.

It took me a long time to realize that my mother's criticism of me are NOT an indication of her disappointment in me. (Even now, I realize this only on a rational basis; I still feel the stings of her words full-force emotionally.) She certainly speaks about me with glorious pride, but only to others, never to me. Like sweet said above, our mothers' criticisms are indeed borne of love. It is precisely because they care so much that they always have to say "something". Somehow, they've come to believe that it's their duty to "help" us - to always strive for more, to become better than we are. Little do they know how detrimental this behavior can be to the fragile self-esteems of their children.

It's NOT all negative! It also took a long time for me to realize the silver lining, but it's a big one! Like sweet, I'm convinced that I am a much better mom because of all the emotional s*** I've through. As the oldest, I had taken the brunt of my mother's "attacks". My younger sister experienced maybe 10% of what I did, although she does not realize the disparity. Now, however, we are both parents, and I see her repeating many of my mother's "bad habits" with her son. It appears that she saw enough to pattern after it, but not quite enough to develop an aversion to it. I, on the other hand, had spent years trying to get over my difficult relationships with my parents, but now I'm instinctively that much more careful with my son. I hope that I won't go overboard in the opposite direction by being over-lenient, but I think that just my awareness of it will help me become the kind of loving and supportive parent I've always longed for.

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12 years 4 months ago #45633 by Dreamy
Thanks you all for such cheering and guiding posts
I loved these words of yours, Sweet.’The first step towards liberation is to learn to love yourself and to separate your self-love from your parents, from their love, from their approval. Then, it is important to believe in yourself.’
You are so right .I think I was always longing for approvals from parents and of course wanted the same love and affection as before .It became almost unachievable to have it all after marriage.
I must work on separating my individuality from their subsistence. And also learn to be content in my own surrounds.

Beth056,I applaud you for standing behind your decision to go to med school .Kids are worth the whole lot and more ,trust me . I think it’s natural to desire to have kids and wish you loads of luck .Since you are discussing with your spouse ,I assume it won’t be long before you both walk down the parenthood aisle together !!

Romd, it’s true our parents always want to steer us to achieve higher heights than ever .I remember my Mom saying that she feels that I have so much potential and it’s sad that I should wasting it all by sitting at home .
My daughter’s second year was so exhilarating for me .I remember those times as happiest times .I was really content and happy for once in my life .Everything seemed perfect in those days
But my parents had hard time seeing through as to why that is .What do I own to be so content in myself?
Mom used to call endlessly and it all did have an effect on me .Everything did become dissatisfying and I started to have doubts on my own self worth.
I think I will just have to work to love my life as it is .And believe in my self and in us as a family Together me and my hubby can achieve our career goals without sacrificing the things that make life worth living .I do believe kids and family make you unwavering and happier .
There is more to life than just working for your own goals ,your own dreams and achieving them .It’s better to work towards our dreams together as a family ,to keep our children’s happiness in place while striving to achieve professional goals .
I think if you leave all the rest and just concentrate on one part, then you have higher chances of just being alone with your own success and nothing else.
I thought marriage is all about sharing .Sharing life, career expectations, having a family together .That is what makes marriage a marriage. I would not be able to separate myself while in marriage and just do whatever it takes to achieve just my goals .I guess I will work for my goals while being there for them .That will make me more content .
Thanks you all .Your posts were very encouraging and made me feel a lot better .Thank you.

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