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Saying "NO!!"

Sunday, May 06, 2012

I have two VERY needy adult children. They don't live at home but call me for every little thing. "I'm out of sugar" , " I need a ride to work in 5 mins or I'll be fired" , "I need diapers", "I know you just brought me shopping but I forgot milk", "you got $50", "can you babysit for the weekend and can you pick her up right now?" etc, etc,,... They even have their friends calling me to do stuff like give them a jump, babysit, a ride to the eye Dr, and even advice.

I love them and wish them the best but it's my time and I have started saying "NO!"

Example~ My sons gf Katie asked me to watch her kids from 11:15-2:15 yesterday. I got up at 6am, cleaned my house, did my video and went for a walk (I usually enjoy my coffee at the computer, clean, wait for hubby to get home and then exercise in the evening on Sats) . She started texting me at 9:15 ( I was walking) asking me if I had cereal because the girls didn't want eggs. I told her I did but was getting my cardio in and wouldn't be home for awhile. Next thing I know she is pulling up on the side of me as I'm walking wanting to know how long I'll be and if I want a ride home. I tell her no, I'm all set. I smile and wave at the girls and keep going, barely breaking my stride. She drives off, I keep walking.

At 9:25 she texts me that her car won't start and she is broke down at her oldest daughters friends house but she has the jumper cables I bought her last week in the trunk. (this is a recurring problem!!!) I text back "don't they have a car?" "can't they jump you?" She texts back that they aren't coming out and her cell is about to die so she needs to know when I'm coming now!! I text back "where is your car charger?" "at home", she says. Really? that makes zero sense to me.

At this point I am clearly annoyed and put my phone in my pocket so I can get the most out of my walk. I can feel it going off about every 2 mins but ignore it. It keeps beeping so I finally check and I have 8 texts from her, wanting to know WHEN I'm coming. I text back that I am not coming, that I have allocated the hours between 11:15 and 2:15 for her and that's all I have to give. Less than 5 mins later my son calls wanting to know why I'm being "a bitch" to Katie after I said I would help her today. I tell him the same thing I told her and hang up. I shut off my phone and kept walking.

I get home at 10:15 am, log my exercise, eat, shower. 11:15 comes, no Katie. At 12:00 Katie shows up with the kids who still haven't eaten. I feed them, we plant flowers, watch TV, play with the dogs, etc. 2:15 comes, no Katie. At 2:30 my husband comes home and reminds me that we were supposed to go shopping for things we need for our vacation. I text Katie, no reply. At 2:45 I call her and she says that since she dropped them off late she will need more time. I tell her you need to come NOW and PLEASE do not ask me again.

I mean it. From now on I will come first. I am 44 years old and have NEVER made myself a priority. I know it's my own fault and I know I am the only one who can change it.

From now on the answer is no to everything unless I have at least 24 hours notice, you do exactly what you say and it fits into my plan!!

P.S.~ Just because I managed to say no I got in a 3.5 mile walk. If I had jumped in her car and did her bidding (as I have always done in the past) I would have walked less than a mile.

P.S.S~ My children are 28 and 23 and Katie is 37!!!!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    You are doing the right thing - stay strong! And if you really need to get the point across, turn the tables. I am sure mom texting for help every 2 mins and demanding the kids drop what they are doing and attend to you NOW for a change will help them understand the bind they put you in when they do the same (and give them a chance to return some favors).
    3362 days ago
    GOOD FOR YOU for making yourself a priority!!! Stay strong. emoticon
    3362 days ago
    emoticon Yes, it is challenging rasing those adult children.

    3363 days ago
    I have to say it also, GOOD FOR YOU. Please don't back down on putting yourself first. Your kids need to grow up and stand on their own two feet. Some example they are being for their kids.
    3365 days ago
    Sounds like the pattern has been in place for quite some time, but only you can change it. Often when a pattern has been entrenched for awhile, it takes time for everyone to get accustomed to the new reality.

    Stick with it and Stay Strong - everyone, including your kids, will be better off for it.
    3365 days ago
    I hate to say it but mean every word of it - Good For YOU! I know the boat you are speaking of and it is true. We too many times do not put ourselves first and there has to be a point in our lives when we do.

    Keep taking care of yourself! Hugs!
    3365 days ago
    Wow. I am one of five kids (aged 21-27) and we would NEVER do that to our parents! And our friends wouldn't even think about it! One of my brothers is borderline autistic and he doesn't even call them for most things!

    I'm glad you're putting your foot down. You are not a doormat. YOU spent your time raising your kids, time for them to do things on their own.

    Good job for not answering your phone for a while on your walk. Stay strong.
    3365 days ago
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