Ask Amy: Stepmother sees debilitating illness during pregnancy as a ‘psychological issue’

Dear Amy: When I was pregnant with my first child, I was diagnosed with a condition called hyperemesis gravidarum.

It causes debilitating nausea, uncontrollable vomiting and dehydration and, in severe cases, can be life threatening.

During my pregnancy, I had to go to the emergency room eight times and was hospitalized for four days at one point.

HG also caused other pregnancy complications and I delivered my son via emergency caesarean section 10 weeks early.

It was by far the hardest thing my husband or I have ever experienced.

I am now pregnant with my second child and luckily I am enjoying a normal pregnancy.

The problem is that my mother-in-law took my good health now as a “sign” that I never really got sick the first time.

She expressed that my first pregnancy-related distress was really a psychological issue because I was “so scared of not having a healthy baby.”

I don’t know why she says things like that, and it really bothers me when she brings it up.

My husband says I need to learn that his opinions just don’t matter, but I’m still upset.

Any advice on how to close it gracefully?

– Not “All in my head”

Dear Not: Because of her lack of compassion for you, your mother-in-law has waived her privilege to know or discuss your health. Your health – past or present – should not be taken into account.

If she brings up her theory again about your first pregnancy, you can say, “I’m going to have to cut you off halfway thinking. Let’s not talk about my health, okay? »

Your husband is right: his mother’s opinions on your health problems do not matter, and your behavior will show that from now on, it is not to be discussed.

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Dear Amy: I have a family member who lives in another state but has a second home in my state.

They come to their second home but never want to come see my family.

I tried to meet them, gave them ideas for getting together, and even offered to meet halfway so they didn’t have to drive so far.

They are never willing to come see us or drive to our house.

In six years, we have seen them once.

It got so bad that I guess I’ll never see them.

The worst thing is that they send us messages saying “We will be in your condition next week and we would like to see you”, but they always find excuses.

My kids always ask when they’ll see this family member’s kids (their cousins), and honestly, I’m tired of telling my kids they canceled us.

What should I do?

– Tired of trying

Dear Tired: It appears to be a trip for your family member to go to their second home and you live some distance from that home.

They are obviously not willing to extend their trip to visit you.

The next time they tell you they’ll be in your condition, you should be honest and say, “We really want to see you, and the kids can’t wait to get together, but we never seem to get there.” What are your suggestions? »

They may ask you to drive to their home. They can hedge or make a plan and then cancel.

I agree with your feeling that if these family members really wanted to see you and the kids, they would work harder to make it happen.

It’s hard to realize that your family values ​​are different from theirs, but if you’ve exhausted all reasonable efforts to see them, you’ll have to accept it.

Dear Amy: I enjoyed your “Best of” column about the occasional challenges faced by short people.

Years ago our company hired a super-duper Mr. Fix It guy.

He had a series of conference calls and always seemed very tough and gruff.

I imagined a guy like John Wayne or General Patton.

I met him in person one day, and he was short and short, but with a booming voice.

I said to him, “You talk a lot taller on the phone.”

He laughed and replied, “No, that’s the biggest I’ve ever been!”

It was great.

– A reader

Dear Reader: What strikes me is that anyone outside of what could be considered the “norm” (whatever that is right now), seems to need a great back line.

It is sad.

(You can email Amy Dickinson at [email protected] or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy Where Facebook.)

©2022 Amy Dickinson. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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