MomandSon | 2011-08-20
How do i stop my parents from interfering, judging and criticising me? i am a single mom whose 6 year old son wont live with me because he is so attached to my parents.
This is a very difficult situation to find yourself in. The problem is that this has probably built up over years. The best way is to start somewhere - and to accept that patterns of behaviour do not change overnight. I am sure you have tried to remedy the situation - but you will need to assert yourself. Being assertive means making time for a serious family meeting. Try not to become aggressive or critical - or vindictive. Use I-language to tell them how you feel eg " I feel very disempowered as a parent and need to start to become more important in my son's life" Also show them that you do appreciate what they have done to help you ..." I know how much you have done to support us" Ask them to start by being more positive towards you - to build your son's confidence in you. Of course, you will need to show that you can be an effective and capable parent. Then offer suggestions regarding how to slowly reclaim your son eg do not insist that he come and live with you immediately - rather go gradually and build up the time he spends with you. Try to be firm - but gentle. eg "I know you want to stay with Granny and Grandpa, but we need to go now - we will come back at the weekend".
That way you can hopefully build your confidence as a single parent - and at the same time work on building a stronger parent-child bond.
My books "Children Need Boundaries" and "Children Need Grandparents - maintaining boundaries in extended families" will definitely help you
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