Author Topic: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)  (Read 3980 times)

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Lynn2000

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Re: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)
« Reply #15 on: January 09, 2013, 02:53:41 PM »
I think when she rants about how awful working parents are, that's a great time to say, in kind of a crestfallen tone, "Oh. I went back to work when Junior was 6 weeks old." Maybe even go one step further and say, "Are you saying I'm a bad parent?" And just wait to see what her reaction is. Maybe she's speaking without thinking, maybe she forgot about your choice, maybe she does think you're a bad parent in that aspect. Maybe she'll apologize and never mention it again.

When she starts to repeat herself with stories or opinions, maybe say something like, "You know, you've mentioned that before" or "Yes, you mentioned that last time" or "Yes, you told me that over lunch an hour ago." Make your tone a little bored and disinterested. She may not get it the first time, but if you always respond like that, she may realize that 1) she is repeating herself a lot; and/or 2) you aren't interested in hearing more stories like that, so she should stop.

Also, I don't know what you've tried so far, but if you want to be a little more forceful about changing the subject to something of general interest, or about something you're concerned about, I don't think that's rude. If she finishes with story A, jump in with your own story, even if it doesn't "flow" well, before she can go on to story B.
~Lynn2000

Mikayla

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Re: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)
« Reply #16 on: January 09, 2013, 03:14:23 PM »
This is the kind of topic that makes me wonder if I'm socially inept because it doesn't occur to me to apply etiquette maneuvers such as bean-dipping and other indirect tactics when it comes to close friends.

Hah!  Agreed!  I, like you, am straight forward with close friends, and otherwise, they aren't close friends and I don't waste my time worrying about the situation.

Me three!  My favorite go-to phrase is "I don't think you see how you're coming across to others".  This doesn't infringe on her right to have opinions; it deals with the fallout from expressing them. 


Hmmmmm

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Re: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)
« Reply #17 on: January 09, 2013, 03:20:34 PM »
Honestly, if a long term friend started acting like this, I'd probably start putting a lot of distance between us.  The next time she says something about working parents I think I'd respond with a "You know, friend, I'm pretty tired of being told what a great parent you are and what a horrible one I am.  I got to go." and then I'd hang up. 

But if your not willing to blow up the friendship entirely, everytime she starts talking about other parents or focusing the conversation on her child only, excuse yourself from the conversation.  If your on the phone... "got to go, someones at the door".  If your at lunch "Sorry, I need to run to the restroom."

Or you can have a heart to heart and say that you miss talking to her about things other than kids and parenting.  That you are concerned spending so much time at home with the baby that she is causing her to loose her own identity.  Recommned she find a Mothers Day Out program or at the least a Mommie and Me program where she can expand her horizons and develop some interests other than her child. 

Ida

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Re: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)
« Reply #18 on: January 09, 2013, 11:09:39 PM »
Oy, that poor kid.
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CakeEater

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Re: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)
« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2013, 05:32:59 AM »
Re: the criticism, I have been there! And I am a little ashamed to admit, for a while, at least inwardly, I WAS that parent, wondering why other parents were having such problems, making different choices, etc. My second child has taught me a world of perspective and humility.

I am usually able to tone down the generalized criticisms by my own anecdotes, particularly if I can tell them in a humorous way. I give examples of how Child #2 has taught me that each child truly is his/her own person, not merely an extension of the parents, and how I have been forced to accept that sometimes the same methods do not work with different children, even when one is a physical 3-years younger carbon copy of the other.  I'll also tell of my obsession with all the parenting books and philosophies, the fear of being wrong and fear of being a new inexperienced authority, not to mention the fear of my new daughter suffering any consequences if I guessed wrong.  I think in some cases the criticism of other parents stems from insecurities and a fierce desire for their own choice to be acknowledged as the correct one.

She may not hear you, there's just some things people cannot comprehend until they can experience it, but if she keeps getting responses like that from you, she may give up on criticizing other parents/parental decisions in front of you.  Good luck!

I'm pretty glad I had my 'difficult' kid first - it has really turned me 180 from being pretty judgemental to not at all.

bloo

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Re: All she can talk about is the baby! (Long)
« Reply #20 on: January 10, 2013, 12:30:10 PM »
Re: the criticism, I have been there! And I am a little ashamed to admit, for a while, at least inwardly, I WAS that parent, wondering why other parents were having such problems, making different choices, etc. My second child has taught me a world of perspective and humility.

I am usually able to tone down the generalized criticisms by my own anecdotes, particularly if I can tell them in a humorous way. I give examples of how Child #2 has taught me that each child truly is his/her own person, not merely an extension of the parents, and how I have been forced to accept that sometimes the same methods do not work with different children, even when one is a physical 3-years younger carbon copy of the other.  I'll also tell of my obsession with all the parenting books and philosophies, the fear of being wrong and fear of being a new inexperienced authority, not to mention the fear of my new daughter suffering any consequences if I guessed wrong.  I think in some cases the criticism of other parents stems from insecurities and a fierce desire for their own choice to be acknowledged as the correct one.

She may not hear you, there's just some things people cannot comprehend until they can experience it, but if she keeps getting responses like that from you, she may give up on criticizing other parents/parental decisions in front of you.  Good luck!

I'm pretty glad I had my 'difficult' kid first - it has really turned me 180 from being pretty judgemental to not at all.

I, too, had my 'difficult kid' first. My parental self-esteem was in the toilet. I thought I must have been the worst parent in the world and being around my pre-parenting, judgmental self would have been intolerable!

My second child was a revelation as I realized that my first wasn't difficult because I was a bad parent. He was just a more challenging kid. My second would play quietly by herself, take scheduled naps, was cooperative and would work things out without screaming in frustration. She definitely upped my parental self-esteem.

Now that they're teenagers, they've flipped roles. Now my difficult kid has turned into a dream of a teenager and my easy baby has turned into a passionate (volatile?), opinionated and not-so-cooperative teenager.

Oh well, it'll all work out in the end!

I'd dial back the time I spend with someone that acts that way (in the OP). I would try the excellent suggestions other posters have given first, though.