View Full Version : Lack of space

22-06-2012, 10:06 PM
Please help...I live next door to my in-laws on d same prop, separated by just a door. I have 3 kids. My mil n fil have no respect for my privacy. They r constantly in my house. They come at fetch my kids at any time of d day. We can't have a decent family meal without them coming to take my kids. If I make rules in my house they allow my kids to break them. I'd be getting ready to bath d kids n they fetch them n take them for hrs till I go n get them. If I am playing with my kids they come n fetch them-not to spend time with them- but put them in front of d tv. If I say anything they gonna think I don't want them to see d kids, but I take d kids to see them. I just want a little space n privacy. My fil will even come n sit in my room n play with them there. Pls help...I feel stifled. Am I being selfish?

23-06-2012, 12:33 AM
This is a very complicated situation and you need to be very careful of their feelings and their protective love as grandparents. If I were in your situation I would ask to speak without my children present with your husband, yourself and you in laws with your vision of raising kids. To start off with you and your husband must speak with one voice to ensure that things are going to change in a positive way without hurting anyone's feelings.

1. You need to highlight the importance of discipline during meal times when your family sits down to eat. It needs to be uninterrupted, because sharing and respecting the food are happening all at once. It is also important for your children's physical and emotional health to eat together as a private family. Table manners need to be impeccable, children must sit in their seats, eat, and ask for permission before they are allowed to leave. They should not leave until the family is finished eating and they have helped clean up.

2. To be able to reach your in laws halfway, suggest they eat one night a week with you, maybe Friday night where there is no homework for the next day. Also make a set time every day for a time-limited visit - for example, a thirty minute slot after dinner and before bath time, or they can greet the kids after school with you and stay for the after school snack. You can explain that children need structured homework time to succeed at school and because their grandparents represent fun if they are still there it is distracting for the kids. If the kids are not yet school age say you want to prepare them for the school time. Make it clear that there are designated visit times because you want the children to learn to take responsibility for the house, so only some areas are play areas - i.e. not your bedroom. The whole house should not be a playzone.

3. Use your engaged grandparents to your advantage. They can have their own private time with the kids one half day on the weekends- this can be your private time. But it must be at their house or outside in the park and make it clear that you want your children to be active, and also that this is a special time for them and their grandparents where your kids do not have to obey home rules but those rules are always in place with you and must be respected. This will also give your children memories of their grandparents.

4. Children love discipline, it is critical. Play time can not be inserted anywhere, or in later years they will always look for fun in the middle of work. This is a disastrous outcome in the future. Explain that your kids really love their grandparents and you need THEIR help to impose important rules that will serve your children well in the future, and establish a disciplined environment that is filled with love and respect.

5. Finally, if after this they do not listen, simply a) make sure they do not have keys to your house, b) when they knock, say, we are eating dinner now, it's not the right time, we will come to visit at our designated time of whenever it is. It is your children and your house.