(Closed) my issues with my MIL and my son – really long

posted 7 years ago in Babies
Post # 3
1363 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I see what they mean now when they say “If your Mother-In-Law is bad now, wait until you have children”. 🙁

I’m so sorry. I’m not a mom, yet, so I don’t know if any advice I have is valid.

Just wanted to send you a hug.

And for the record, I agree that your Mother-In-Law should not be “sneaking around” while you’re at work to be with her grandson. If she had to skip work to do so, I don’t feel it’s right.

Post # 4
536 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2007

I don’t really have any good ideas, unfortunately, but I just wanted to share that I am having similar issues with my Father-In-Law (MIL passed away a few years ago). Before DS, we got along wonderfully, but I’ve noticed that since having DS, it seems like everything Father-In-Law does bugs me. He came up right after DS was born, and I had a breakdown in the hospital because he was just hanging out in the room and I wanted to nurse (which had been really difficult) and didn’t want him there for that (I still don’t like nursing in front of him, but at the hospital I couldn’t try to be discreet about it and just ended up topless the whole time). Some of the things that bug me don’t even seem rational, but it just seems like he is always getting on my nerves. I feel bad about it, especially since- like you- I have NO problem handing over DS to my own parents or sister. I think part of it is the fact that I trust my family to respect my crazy and if I want to overdress him or not put pants on him, or get weird about feeding, they follow my wishes to the letter, whereas Father-In-Law seems confused about that kind of stuff sometimes (especially when I try to impose a schedule for DS that interferes with other activities- Father-In-Law still wants to make dinner reservations at 8 PM and doesn’t understand why I object). I think part of the issue is that I resent him for making me feel like I am overreacting or being irrational. I’m a stressed out new mom, and I think I deserve to insist on weird seemingly meaningless things every once in a while if they’re not detrimental to my kid.

I don’t want to put Darling Husband in the middle of this, so I vent to my family and my best friend and that helps prevent the resentment from building up too much. I’ve also found that DH’s godmother is a great ally- I somehow don’t have the issues with her that I have with Father-In-Law, so she helps to run interference sometimes, and she backs me up (maybe your SIL could help out with that?).


Post # 5
6009 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2009

Especially at the beginning, it can be really difficult to be around people who make unsupportive or critical comments.  Unintentional or not, it is annoying and hurtful to hear negativity about something you are doing with your child.  And hearing those comments constantly to make you feel unconfident in your parenting choices, leading to anger, resentment, etc…

It’s so hard, in your case, because you guys are so close to your in-laws.  It seems like you don’t have the opportunity to get some much needed space from them.  To be honest, distance and time are the only things that I can think of to make it better. 

However, I would totally have a talk with your husband about his mom watching the baby today, especially if you don’t want this to continue.  I think it’s reasonable to set up the expectation now that childcare should be discussed between the two of you before plans are made. 

Post # 6
5823 posts
Bee Keeper

Wow, that is really hard!  I agree with everything Mrs. Spring said.

Personally I am also reluctant to leave MB in the care of someone who I feel doesn’t support my choices as a mother (cloth diapering, EC, etc.).  I can understand why you would bristle at the thought of your Mother-In-Law taking care of your DS.

Like Mrs. Spring said, time and distance are the answer, but I can see how difficult that may be since they do so much for you.

My only advice to help is everytime your Mother-In-Law interacts with your DS tell yourself that whatever she does won’t kill him.  Seriously, say it “out loud” to yourself in your thoughts.  Hear your own voice.  “Whatever she does won’t kill him.”

As long as your DS stays healthy and happy, just grin and bear it.  You will eventually get over the territorial “don’t touch my baby” phase.  I think most moms get it, and it seems to pass once the baby is running around getting bruises on his own.  Sorry I don’t have more advice.  I’m not really over this phase either yet!  😉

Post # 7
1645 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I’m right there with you! My in-laws showed up when I was induced too, waiting around all day and night! It was so irksome and I’m still trying to get over the little bit of resentment I still feel for her going against our wishes. It sounds like your Mother-In-Law has done a few things to break your trust in her, at least in regards to her ability to care for you son the way you want her too. It seems like her joy at being a new grandma has taken over and she either doesn’t care or is less observant of your feelings and your role as a new mom. It’s also natural to be more at ease around people who are calmer. Her high strung personality probably makes it harder to relax around her, especially if she is overstimulating DS.

What @MightySapphire said about reminding yourself that whatever your Mother-In-Law does won’t hurt him is good advice. Pick your battles, and say something when it’s really important. I always get irritated because my Mother-In-Law will not use cloth diapers; she always has an excue to put him in a disposable, even though we have pockets that are stuffed and as easy as a disposable to put on him. But it’s just not worth saying anything since she doesn’t do very many diaper changes. When your Mother-In-Law is with him and you are getting irritated, find something to do for yourself, like take a shower, a nap or read. Filling that time with something productive and/or enjoyable will help you to feel less angry/irritated at her in the moment.

Also, take some weekends off, or go for part of the weekend whenever you can instead of the whole weekend. Darling Husband works on his parents dairy farm on weekends, and I often feel stuck at my inlaws when we are there. So I try to get out – running, walking, going to my SIL’s parents to swim, shopping, etc… to break up the day and to be around a bit less. Over the winter we were driving DH’s truck to his parents, the weather was nasty and I really felt trapped all weekend since it was so hard to get out of the house.

And you are the mom! You NEVER have to feel guilty for wanting (and taking) cuddle time with your own kid! I am a little more possessive now that I’ve been back to work full time for a few weeks, since I get so much less time with him overall.


Post # 8
5823 posts
Bee Keeper

I wanted to add that every grandmother I have ever met or talked to always feel like they know better than the new mommy because “she’s new to this.  She doesn’t know what she’s doing.  I did a great job.  She should take my advice and do it my way!”  They raised kids, so “obviously” they are experts.  (Despite the fact that quite a few methods and practices are now considered highly questionable and even dangerous.)

A great example of this is putting baby to sleep on their back.  THAT is a battle worth fighting.  It is a safety issue.  You may want to take issue with keeping your DS up past nap time or bed time, but that’s trickier.  You would need your DH’s support for whatever, and even then your Mother-In-Law probably won’t listen.

Post # 9
2821 posts
Sugar bee

I’m a new mommy too and a bit sensitive when people make comments about my wee one.  Even if I don’t agree with them it still makes me 2nd guess and worry more than is necessary.  The first time I went to visit our IL we ran into some issues, mainly with old wives tales, my Mother-In-Law and I have different views on how to do things, which resulted in a normally happy baby being quite grumpy for the weekend – like breastfeeding too much will make her fat, crying for long periods is good for the lungs (she was 5 weeks old), sleeping with all sorts of stuffed animals, etc.  I was really irritated by the end of the weekend and had just started to ignore her, like not even acknowledge something had been said and do what I wanted or make comments back that weren’t exactly sweet.  My husband helped out a lot and when his mom commented to him about a couple things, he explained thoroughly why we were doing what we were doing and why we were not going to do some of the things she’d suggested and that we were not going into this blindly but had made decisions based on research and what worked best in our family.  Our second visit went a lot smoother, I didn’t feel overwhelmed with trying to keep old wives tales away from baby and so became a bit more flexible with things I wouldn’t normally do but wouldn’t hurt baby.

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