It’s funny how our parents change once they have a grandchild. Suddenly, it’s your little one who gets more importance over you. And most grandpas and grandmas will not leave any chance to spoil their little bundle of joy.
But the problem arises with grandparents disrespecting parents and overstepping their boundaries. It’s one thing to love your grandkid, it’s another to undermine the parent while doing so.
For Reddit dad was recently caught in a situation that saw the grandparents undermining the parents. The user in his post shed light on how nana and papa were disrespectful to the parents and did not understand the concept of bodily autonomy when it came to the baby.
They did something to the baby’s body, which according to this dad was “unacceptable!”
Grandparents Do THIS To Nine-month-old Baby’s Body Without Consulting The Parents
Image courtesy: iStock
Describing his experience, the dad wrote, “Me and my fiancétni (22m & 23f) had our baby girl Thalia and she just turned 9 months old. We basically decided it was gonna be up to Thalia when she’s older if she wants to get her ears pierced.”
“Tbh I was never into the idea of it being done as a baby when they can’t consent, like my fiancée’s parents pierced her ears when she was a baby, and she always hated wearing earrings. Still doesn’t wear any,” he said.
Adding further he said, “My parents didn’t shut up about it for a while saying ‘she’d look so cute.’ But we told them already no and that’s our answer.”
“When they babysat for us once, they got one of my mom’s friends to do it [ear piercing], and we were pissed they went behind our backs. We stopped talking to them after that for disrespecting our decision,” he shared taking about his baby’s grandparents disrespecting parents.
Parents Won’t Let The Grandparents Babysit Anymore
Image Source: Pexels
“Everyone was saying we were making a big deal and we can’t cut them out of their granddaughter’s life over something like that. So we decided they’re allowed to see Thalia only when one of us is around, and they won’t be left alone with her,” he wrote.
“That’s where everyone is still saying we’re being massive a-holes because we’re still punishing them over something that’s not a big deal and we’re treating them like children. Even my fiancées’ parents think that only letting them have supervised visits is too much and they should be allowed to babysit or have Thalia at their place alone like before,” he added.
This case is a classic example of grandparents overstepping their boundaries. It became all the more complicated considering the parents had warned them against doing so.
The problem isn’t that it’s a one-off incident, but rather what else can happen if the parents do not make a hue and cry about it. Grandparents also need to understand this is about trust, which matters equally even if it’s with your own children.
Grandparents Disrespecting Parents: Other Users Agree With The Parents
Other Reddit users also sided with the dad and agreed that this was a gross overstep when it comes to boundaries.
One user wrote, “NTA (not the a**hole). I wouldn’t be leaving my child with them ever again. My mum cut my daughter’s fringe and I lost it; this is another level altogether. What’s going to be the next thing they decide they know better on? They’re lucky they’re even allowed to see her tbh.”
“The trust is broken”
Another user added, “My sister’s nan (we have different dads) gave her meat when she was little and my mum never allowed her to see my sister ever again. It was sad but understandable. This is another level though because pierced earlobes may never close fully (because your daughter is a baby they may). But still, the trust is broken.”
“Don’t blame you one bit”
One user pointed how the complete sounds unhygienic and risked the baby’s health.
He wrote, “NTA also i would like to point out that a lot of people have low-level nickle allergies, myself included. Most studs are made of nickle and I have scar tissue around my ears because of my allergy that could develop into a keloid, I can’t wear earrings without them being pure gold or silver. Have actually stopped wearing them altogether. Please watch to see if the child has any itchiness or redness at their ears after wearing earrings. Don’t blame you one bit.”
Illegal to pierce the baby’s ears without parents’ consent
Another user wrote how the whole thing is illegal since you require a parent or guardian’s consent and grandparents do not qualify.
He wrote, “I think body modification against a parent’s explicit wishes makes them unfit carers. What other instructions are they going to ignore because ‘it looks cute.’ They deliberately hurt your baby for cosmetic reasons. And let’s be clear. Piercings do hurt. They are uncomfortable afterwards when you need to keep twisting the stud against raw flesh inside until the skin grows over.”
How Can You Resolve Grandparents Disrespecting Parents?
Image Source: Pexels
While the grandparent and grandchild relationship is healthy for everyone in the house, it can also turn into a toxic space affecting the relationship between you and your child.
This is particularly true when grandparents ply the kids with forbidden sweets, extend screentime, disregard your rules and even encourage children to lie to the parents.
If you are at crossroads with your own parents on in-laws, here are few ways you can resolve this issue.
1. Acknowledge their intentions
The grandparents may sometimes not realise that they are overstepping the boundaries and sometimes just go overboard. Acknowledge that you understand they have the best intentions for the grandchild.
You can then approach them to work things in a different way. You need to communicate that what they’ve done wrong and how it’s bad for the child. Make sure they feel included in the child’s life.
2. Avoid criticism or harsh tone
Criticising grandparents disrespecting parents isn’t exactly the best way to deal with them. No one likes to be judged for their actions, especially at an old age. And they are likely to become defensive and angry when pulled up.
However, you need to be tactful of the words you use and diffuse the situation for your own sake.
An uncooperative grandparent is as unhelpful as a baby. In a way, they are at the two ends of the same spectrum. So, instead of criticism, ask them how you can be helpful and then build on the same.
3. Set realistic boundaries
It’s perfectly fair and necessary to set limits. While you can acknowledge and be cooperative of the grand dad’s love, you also need them to understand the basic rules of your house and family.
The idea to negate grandparents disrespecting parents is to negotiate and bring all members of the household on the same page. Do remember, you cannot please everyone and if you are taking a step to negotiate, the grandparents will have to adjust as well.
4. When they cross boundaries
Image courtesy: iStock
Despite all the planning, if the grandparents do overstep the boundaries then it’s time to speak to them. As uncomfortable as the conversation might be, if it’s something that affects the child’s wellbeing then it needs to be made. At the same time, no need to be rude about things.
Instead, give them another way to contribute to the parenting process. You will need to take extra steps for them to understand how parenting has changed over the years. At times, it’s just the gap between generations that causes the rift.
5. Stick to your guns
And finally, stick to your own schedule no matter what anyone says. You’ve planned your child’s timetable based on what he needs.
This includes sleep, screen time, playtime, schooling, and more. While the occasional pamper from the grandparents is always welcome, it can’t disrupt the child’s preset schedule.
Your parenting style and schedules will keep changing as your children grow older and their needs change as well. Do remember, grandparents play an extremely important role in the baby’s formative years.
That’s why do not cut off ties on smaller incidents. All issues can be resolved amicably as long as both of you are willing to extend a hand for the sake of the baby.