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Old 09-19-2012, 01:27 AM   #1
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Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

So I'm really bummed that it's coming to this but I just can't let it keep going on. We've had some friends for a few years (the dad and DH actually go all the way back to elementary school). Since having kids I'm feeling less comfortable being around them and feel like distancing us from them. Am I crazy? I used to think the funny cute quirky things they did were just fun, but now they seem way inappropriate now that we have an impressionable 1 year old and another on the way.

The mom has a 9 year old from a previous relationship with severe developmental delays. She tends to function more like a toddler on many levels. She is verbal but it's mostly limited to repeating certain phrases. Her idea of having a conversation is asking the same questions she already knows the answer to, over and over again ("is that a fluffy cat" "maybe the dog wants dinner"). I love her dearly, but she is exhausting!

The mom is in her mid 20s but has some real maturity issues. She isn't practical, she's impulsive, she doesn't think things through, and often has to pay the consequences. Several times this summer she forgot to arrange childcare and ended up sending her DD to a drop in place where she paid $10 /hr all day, even though she makes minimum wage. I think literally these planning ahead and thinking things through skills are missing. She encourages her daughter to use baby talk. Whenever the girl wants something the mom says "haffa be patient." The daughter screams and runs around and gets in to everything constantly, and only once in a while does the mom step in to correct/discipline her.

These kinds of problems that would come up were fun and impulsive and left us rolling our eyes a little. Like watching them leave, drive home 15 miles then back because she forgot her makeup bag. Or pouting for hours because her DH looked at a girl. He is not allowed to do anything fun without her. We invited them to my nephew's birthday party at a trampoline place, but since she had to work he couldn't go. He dropped off the daughter then went and sat in the car waiting for her shift to end. She turns into a hormonal flirty mess when she's around cute teenage boys... but if it's a cute teen girl that dad better be all over her fawning over how much cuter she is. It takes a lot of reassurance to let her know she's the hottest person there.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago and my wide-eyed 16 month old baby watched as mother and daughter would scream, pinch each other, even spank really hard but playfully etc... every time they walked past each other. Bedtime rolled around and while I was rocking DD she heard them start to get obnoxious again with pretend/play screams and my baby sat strait up watching the door absolutely fixated. Then she turned to me and whacked me really hard on the arm. Then started hugging me but patting my back over and over really hard (the exact sort of thing she watched them do). I was not impressed, she had never hit before.

I brought it up later and with major exasperation the mom replied "what's the big deal, kids hit, so what?" She also implied that I'm in for a rude awakening because I don't know anything about kids, and all kids hit (I'm a former nanny with 15+ years exp). Yes kids hit, but something is wrong if they are witnessing adults modeling the behavior in an inappropriate way.

These quirks didn't bother me so much but now that I have my own family I'm seeing the values I don't want to instill in my DD. Things like needing to be the center of attention, needing to be reassured that she's the prettiest person in the room, being helpless, being impractical, needing to be entertained constantly, etc... And the obnoxious silly stuff she does with her 9 year old may be fine for them... but my 1 year old doesn't know the difference between playful biting/spanking/hitting/screaming and aggression.

The dad and my DH go back over 20 years. The mom has been in the picture for the last few years, and they got married last fall. We honestly weren't sure what he saw in her until my brother explained it... It's the knight in shining armor syndrome. He always feels like a hero and needed as he corrects her mistakes and poor planning. We do a lot of stuff together, and see them probably every 3 weeks or so. They tend to drop in unexpectedly, so I'm really at a loss as to what to do or say or don't say. I've had other times where I've felt uncomfortable with them around my baby... but the hitting incident was the first where it really struck a nerve. Have you ever had to distance yourself from someone after having kids? We distanced ourselves from another couple but that was easy and natural since they have NO interest in kids and our interests and priorities changed. Sorry this is so long, I'm just not sure what to do! Kudos if you managed to read the whole thing! What should I do?

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Old 09-19-2012, 01:47 AM   #2
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I decided a long time ago, That I would only surround myself with people Who helped me be a better person. Of course that is an overall experience. Everybody has rough times and sometimes we need to be supportive of others. But in the end that helps you become a better person also. When you feel the scales have tipped too far, and you are no longer getting what you need out of the relationship... get rid of the dead weight.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:24 PM   #3
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

I wouldn't have been able to be around a woman like that before kids.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:33 PM   #4
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

It sounds like the mom has some developmental issues herself. I couldn't have been friends with her to begin with. Maybe the 2 guys can get together once in a while and do an activity such as bowling or something that doesn't include the family.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:43 PM   #5
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

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Originally Posted by pumkinsmommy View Post
It sounds like the mom has some developmental issues herself. I couldn't have been friends with her to begin with. Maybe the 2 guys can get together once in a while and do an activity such as bowling or something that doesn't include the family.
I agree. If you aren't comfortable with the influence she has on your child, then you shouldn't have to expose your child to it.
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Old 09-19-2012, 08:59 PM   #6
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

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Originally Posted by EmilytheStrange View Post
I wouldn't have been able to be around a woman like that before kids.
LMAO, right?

I have realized that some relationships have a season and that's ok
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:09 PM   #7
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

I have distanced myself from one person because her parenting and lifestyle choices were not something I could allow my daughter to see. It was easy to cut her out. She did something unforgivable in my eyes. I don't know how to fix your situation. I would get your husband to bring it up to his friend.
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:34 PM   #8
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

How does your dh feel? I think its fine to distance yourself, but what about your Dh's relationship w/ his lifelong friend?
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Old 09-21-2012, 08:47 AM   #9
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

The guys are friends so I would let them get together every now & then, but I would keep myself & DD out of it. The next time they drop in, just say, "sorry, we're having family time right now".

We've had to distance ourselves from someone, a family member. Everytime she was around, visits would end with her getting angry & screaming at family members, not DH or I, but others. DD would go to daycare the next day and be aggressive towards the other kids, which is so not like DD, so we put a stop to being around her. We do see her now & then and she has had some improvement but not enough to really have her in our lives.
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Old 09-21-2012, 02:09 PM   #10
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Re: Distance yourself from certain people after having kids?

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Originally Posted by pumkinsmommy View Post
It sounds like the mom has some developmental issues herself. I couldn't have been friends with her to begin with. Maybe the 2 guys can get together once in a while and do an activity such as bowling or something that doesn't include the family.
Yep
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