(Closed) MIL and babies

posted 5 years ago in Babies
Post # 4
979 posts
Busy bee

When I was married…


My xIL’s lived about 15-20 min away. My xFIL babysat while I worked. xMIL came along on her days off.  I saw them too many days a week and they over-extended their days visiting after we got home from work.  


They never helped clean up during the day, so the house was a mess when I got home from work.  They were helpful, cooked dinner and all, but they didn’t help clean up afterwards. I was stuck cleaning all evening after work.


Now onto the xEvilMIL – She was opinionated, judgmental. Looked at me like I was Hitler if I punished my daugher for something.  But she turned around and put her in time out for farting or saying the word fart. Really?  She tended to “Over Parent” me in front of me. This didn’t sit well with me – and xDH was so much of a pussy and a mama’s boy that he wouldn’t say anything to his mommy.


After so many years of putting up with this and saying stuff to her, I was a bitch, according to her.  It took a toll on my marriage after a while. I couldn’t handle it anymore – along with other marital issues.   


But anyways – make sure your Mother-In-Law knows your parenting rules…especially if they  plan on babysitting when you are working. My xILs didn’t know how to discapline my kids when I was working, they acted like grandparents – sorry, my opinion, when the parents aren’t around and you are watching them while they are working, you need to set down some ground rules – but if the kids are at the grandparents house for a night just to spend the night at grandma/grandpa’s house, by all means, be a grandparent and spoil them.  They just spoiled them and let them do whatever they wanted – except when I was around Mother-In-Law had to parent them in front of me, as if I was doing something wrong. 




This probably didn’t help you  – just make sure you stand your ground.  Mama bear needs to protect her cubs 


Post # 7
2849 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

In-law issues are no fun to deal with! I am pregnant, and I have my concerns with my in-laws and the baby after he is born. My Mother-In-Law is actually pretty nice, but my Father-In-Law is overbearing and judgmental. He loves to talk about religion and try to make Darling Husband and I feel guilty about not being Catholic. I worry that he will get even worse when the baby is born and really push to have him baptized and attend Catholic school like his sons did. Plus, they live about 10 minutes away, so we see them probably once a week. Honestly, it’s too often for me. The more I see them, the less I want to be around them. I really don’t want them dropping by every day just because we live close by. 

Post # 8
1724 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 1998

I think that babies can bring out issues that are often already there in the family dynamic – many times a husband isn’t suddenly going to turn into a pushover with his mother when he has a baby. It may have been subtle at first, but often it’s there.

I’m in a somewhat similarish boat, OP. My Mother-In-Law is dramatic and has a “mememe” attitude – to the extent that she’ll pick fights with people over situations that easily could have been resolved by asking a simple question. She jumps to conclusions.

My big “I need to watch my back if I have kids” moment came when my sister-in-law was visiting here with my 3-month-old niece. My Mother-in-law was holding the baby in her lap…and started shaking her! I’m fairly certain her head was somewhat stable, but I was horrified that she was playing so roughly (my niece WAS making noise – my mother-in-law claims laughing but I’m not so sure). I looked around the room, and my husband’s grandma spoke up. No one else said a thing and my mother-in-law continued with a shrug.

I told my husband then and there how I felt. He resorted to his standard, “I didn’t see it…” We worked out a system and a “look” if his family was doing something I don’t like. But if it’s something serious, his mom can boohoo, cry and throw a temper tantrum all she wants – I will speak up. I regret not saying something when she was shaking my niece, but it was one of those “am I overreacting? I don’t know…maybe…” type of situations. Still, I would never shake an infant.

She doesn’t take much interest in us now (world revolves around his sister, thank God) and actually doesn’t seem to want us to have children. If it’s been brought up with her DIRECTLY, she might say, “Oh, how wonderful!” but I’ve noticed that in mixed settings where it’s brought up, she falls into a stony silence.

Best thing you can do is set up your boundaries and set them up now. We’ve talked about who we would like/wouldn’t like baby-sitting, who we want to raise our kids in the event something happens, etc. Frankly, his family is nothing like us – very conservative, judgmental, very religious, some members of the family are very and outspokenly racist, all of them are against gay marriage, almost all of them are blatantly rude to service people when we’re out…they’re just not the sorts of influences I want around my kids often. It really shows what kind of person you are when you’re rude to a waiter or waitress.


Post # 9
861 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I have a difficult Mother-In-Law as well, and am pregnant. I am not sure how it will work when we have kids but I can tell you what it’s like to have a difficult Mother-In-Law when pregnant!

She is really critical of my health issues while pregnant – she “doesn’t believe” in morning sickness. She told me I should discontinue all medications, notwithstanding that I have hyperemesis and was hospitalized. She doesn’t like my maternity clothes so she took me maternity shopping and picked out a bunch of stuff that was loose and billowy, because she thinks it’s an appropriate maternity style and my tighter fitting isn’t. Even though I am planning on breastfeeding, she acts like I am not planning to and talks on and on about how great of a bonding experience it is and how I should join la leche league and how she breast fed all over the place and I should too, etc. She thinks my due date is “wrong” and that I am going to have the baby two months before it is due, based on my size, which she thinks is enormous.

Notwithstanding that we have told her that she cannot stay with us after the baby is born, she has been planning a driving trip across country to stay with us after the baby is born.

She was difficult before the wedding, she was horrendously difficult during wedding planning and during the wedding, and now she is (predictably) difficult during the pregnancy. I have my sincere doubts that she will be any different when we have kids. I think it’s safe to expect that your Mother-In-Law will be the same to you when you’re a mother as she is now. Mine is as critical and passive aggressive as she ever was!

We deal with it by working together to pick our battles with her, and I have learned to not take her criticism personally. My best coping strategy is the old “you can’t control anyone’s behavior but your own”. So I can’t make her not critical, but I can not take her criticism personally. She can make whatever plans she likes about staying with us, but we will just keep calmly repeating that she will not be staying with us after the baby is born. And we will always live a long ways away!

It’s not as easy as having a nice easy Mother-In-Law, but we’ve been making our way through this figuring it out as we go along!

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