It’s been awhile bees…but I need your help. MIL and baby due in 5 weeks

posted 2 years ago in Married Life
Post # 31
11424 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

I’m sure you didn’t mean it this way, but what you said is the equivalent of declaring war and you did it publicly. She’s going to be upset for a while.

While I get that she has some issues, your last post was wanting her more involved, so it doesn’t sound like she’s awful. In fact you described your relationship as close. I just don’t see what telling her, in public, that she was second to your mom always when it comes to babysitting, was meant to accomplish.

not every Mother-In-Law is a terror, and she sounds nice enough that you wanted her around months ago. 

IDK bee, it looks like you owe her an apology. It doesn’t sound like you’re anywhere near to that place,  but if you do get there, I’d shoot her an email or text saying “I just realized how my comment must have come off to you and I’m so sorry for hurting your feelings. Of course baby will have two important grandmas and we would love to have you babysit.”

If she starts this business with you about the baby being her daughter, that is something you can and should immediately shut down. But again, do it privately or among family, not on social media. 

Post # 32
379 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2025 - City, State

Your mother-in-law sounds pushy and incredibly irritating.  But, unless your husband decides to cut off contact with her, she is going to be in your life and your child’s life.  So don’t poke the bear.


For something like the babysitting comment, a better response might have been “Haha, as much as the event looks interesting, I really don’t think I’ll be up to attending much of anything two weeks post-partum” or “Hmm… a four hour round trip involving international border crossings might be a little much to ask of you so I could attend Event for 45 minutes before having to get home to feed the baby again!”  Deflect.  Maaaaybe mention that mom is much closer and it wouldn’t inconvenience her nearly as much as it would mother-in-law (but probably not, since she says she wants to come).


Your mother-in-law isn’t the only grandparent, but your mother isn’t the special grandparent either.  Respond in a calm and measured way, without buying into the drama.  The more you try to defend your decisions (“But she’s my mom’s only grandchild.”  “I’m just so much closer to my mom than I am to you.”), the worse it will get.  Keep it simple.  Be polite.  Play nice.

Post # 33
1705 posts
Bumble bee

I kind of see the other side of this. I don’t have kids, but if I had a newborn, I would be more comfortable having my own mom around helping me than my Mother-In-Law. I get it that the baby has 2 grandmother’s, but in the very early months when the new mom is adjusting to everything, I’d think it’s best to make sure the mom is comfortable and if that means keeping some distance from the overly obsessed Mother-In-Law, then I think it’s okay. You taking care of your baby the best way you know how (which might include more support from your own mom) is more important than giving everyone in the family equal visitation.

Post # 34
63 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

View original reply
kristin36890 :  it’s perfectly fine to think this, but not publically say it to mother in law and everyone else on facebook

Post # 35
632 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

Ok, I know you say she’s “nice” but her comments about her grandchildren sound pretty off, and jumping onto your Facebook plans (which had nothing to do with her) and offering to babysit sounds over the line too. Kind of like crashing a party you were not invited to. I can see why you want to put up boundaries. If this were a few months later and she was making this kind of comments about your daughter being her baby… I think the bees here would be the first ones telling you to be blunt with M.I.L. because she doesn’t get “soft” signals or the idea of boundaries.

Post # 36
3004 posts
Sugar bee

I think that there is no such thing as grandparent rights. If grandparents have any sense they make themselves so pleasant and cooperative and helpful that parents think it is a good thing to make the grandparents part of the child’s life.

Motherhood does funny things to people. I know that I turned from a mild mannered cooperative type of  person into a fierce, monstrous TIGER mother. So.your Mother-In-Law needs to behave.

I doubt with a first baby you will want to attend events when the baby is merely 2 weeks old. Spend the time with your baby and husband doing some bonding instead. 

Besides, you may also be busy breastfeeding.

Post # 37
331 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

Look, your Mother-In-Law sounds overly obsessed and pushy, so I get why you’d want to take her down a peg whenever she thinks she is the most important grandma. But like many PPs I don’t think the facebook comments was the best way to go about that.

You’re closer to your mum, just as he might be closer to his, so that’s who you’ll both lean on for support. However, in general terms, your mum shouldn’t have universal ‘first dibs’ to every single babysitting opportunity just because it’s her first grandchild.

The baby is both yours and your husband’s, and while your Mother-In-Law certainly needs boundaries, both sets of grandparents should have equal opportunity to take ‘dibs’ on babysitting on a case by case basis (of course assuming your Mother-In-Law is reasonable and agrees to boundaries she is currently lacking with your SIL).

Post # 38
9425 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2016

View original reply
kristin36890 :  oh i 100% agree I’d rather my mom than Mother-In-Law babysit my kid.  1,000%.  100,000%.  (I really dont want to make this about me/my Mother-In-Law but lets just say she’s proven herself to be an unreliable caregiver.  But even if it weren’t for that–yeah, in general I just am closer to my mum, duh.)

I’d still NEVER say to her, much less in writing ON FACEBOOK, in response to her volunteering to babysit “Thanks, but my mom will always get first dibs”.  You don’t go around publicly humiliating people. 

You say “Oh i think my mom already said she’d do it that night, let me check”.  You say “Oh, we have a sitter, thanks”.  You say “Oh thanks i’ll think about it”.  You say NOTHING.  Any of those are better than saying what sums up to: “You will never be our first choice”.

Post # 39
1825 posts
Buzzing bee

Look you have all the power here anyways. Don’t worry about you mil. She will come around as soon as the baby is born bc she will want to be involved. If you want you could send her a message saying, I am sorry your feelings were hurt by my Facebook comment. Don’t worry there will be plenty of equal time to babysit the little one. 

That apology/ vague answer costs you nothing but it does get her feeling more at ease.  Going forward don’t worry about it. You know and your mom knows that you are in control of who gets to babysit. Your mil does not need to know that you turn to your mom first or that you ask your mom all the, help! Questions. Just continue how you want to and don’t talk about it to your mil. If your mil comments on Facebook just don’t reply. Also agree you should change your settings on Facebook to reduce what your mil can see. 

When you feel like it, ask your mil a baby question to make her feel included. Something not important and probably something you already confided in your mom first. But do it as a peace offering. Let your mil babysit on your terms. If she makes comments about your baby you don’t like, just say it nicely. “ yes, that’s grandma! I’m mommy.” And just keep repeating it whenever she says it, she will get the hint I think. Or laugh and say, no actually I’m mommy! Aren’t I little girl. Something like that. If she makes an issue of you correcting her weird comments then you can say something more serious. 

You might also wanna implement a plan with your husband about, not inviting your mil over or to babysit without both of you deciding on it ahead of time. So he doesn’t accidently cause a surprise visit. 

You know your mom is more involved, your mil doesn’t have to know that .

Post # 40
395 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

I think your FB reply to her was a bit insensitive. Why would your mom always get babysitting dibs when the child’s father is your MILs son? (I’m not talking about mom advice) I think she sounds dramatic but I have friends that have to beg in laws for any type of childcare help and it’s rough. I’d be happy she is a present grandparent because many grandparents do not help and it can be very difficult on the family. Set reasonable boundaries and have your Darling Husband be on board. I do agree with you on that it’s natural for you to go to your mom for advice as she’s your blood relative. Nothing wrong with that. 

Post # 41
2011 posts
Buzzing bee

She is being dramatic but your “first dibs” comment was shitty.
How hard would it have been to simply say, “Thanks for the kind offer but I’ve already made arrangements”? If your mum decided she couldn’t do it then you could ask your Mother-In-Law if her offer still stands because your initial option fell through. Flat out telling her your mum has first dibs is basically saying she’s the more important grandmother than your Mother-In-Law. Not nice.
You’re both in the wrong but you started it.

Also, why do you keep saying you can’t call her? I make calls to family and friends in multiple countries – most on the other side of the world to me – quite easily. You’re a border away. That’s so strange to me.

Post # 42
2011 posts
Buzzing bee

I also wanted to add that I think you’re really just at BEC level with her.
Anything she does or says will annoy you (the FB comment being a prime example). She was just being polite and rather generous to offer to babysit but it irritated you so you hit back with a cruel response.

Sometimes we just don’t get along with certain people which is fine but there’s not need to be mean. Just ignore her.

Post # 43
1645 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2018

So your Facebook comment was awful.  Imagine if the tables were turned, your mum had commented that she’d babysit, and your husband said without any consultation with you “thanks, but my mum always gets first dibs”.  I guarantee you’d be livid.

It’s great your close with your mum, and of course you are going to go to her first for advice and stuff, but this also isn’t just about you anymore.  Your baby is blessed to have 2 grandmas that will love them very much, and a strong bond with grandparents is a really special.  

Her comment about being your SIL’s babys mama is strange, but I’ve actually heard it before.  Because your eggs develop while your a fetus, some grandmas are like “I grew that baby!”.  Kind of weird, it seems popular with people my mums age (50) as I’ve heard a few say it.  If that’s the case, she won’t say it to you. 

I definitely think your husband and you need to talk about boundaries for your new baby and family, generally speaking for all members of the family (including your mum).  Touch base after the baby is born as you might feel differently. Then don’t stress about Mother-In-Law, until she does something which breaks these boundaries, and get your husband to tell her to back off.  She might not treat you the same way she treated her own daughter.

Post # 44
5480 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2017

Your first dibs comment was heartless and cruel. it doesn’t matter if your Mother-In-Law has 3 grandkids already, they love each one equally (hopefully!) You seem very judgemental. Someone is married 3x so the marriage isn’t as important anymore? You’re wrong. I don’t blame her for not wanting to speak to you right now. Give her some space and be kinder to her from now on. Be happy she’s so happy about her grandchildren. You are lucky.

Post # 45
201 posts
Helper bee

Ugh being a grandparent is a privilege, not a right. She has some cheek getting offended that you are giving your mum dibs, when she is going around basically saying the other grandparents don’t exist or that she is the mother of your SIL child (does that mean she is fanatising that she had the child with her son … because that’s seriously creepy af). Your husband needs to rein her in now. I’d go look at justnomil on Reddit because they are used to dealing with these crazy ass women.

Leave a comment

Find Amazing Vendors