sister seems to really dislike her niece :(

posted 1 year ago in Babies
Post # 31
1057 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2019

It doesn’t necessarily sound like your sister hates her niece, just that she doesn’t like living with her.  And yes, she has no choice but that doesn’t mean that she has to be happy about having a formerly quiet and private space become shared and noisy.  You also have no choice about living there and encroaching on her what she sees as her home, and that’s just how it is.  It’s not an ideal situation for anyone involved.

I think as long as your sister is borderline polite there’s not really anything you can say to her.  You can’t really ask her to please smile and wave.  If you think she’s posing some kind of danger to your daughter, that’s somewhere you should intervene.  But you can’t ask a person to please like someone else, no matter how much you wish she would.

But in turn, so long as you are doing your best to keep your daughter and the house reasonably clean and quiet, you don’t need to feel particularly bad.  You both have just as much of a right to be there.  Just try to shrug it off with your knowledge that your sister isn’t a baby person but this is only temporary and look forward to getting into your own space soon.

Post # 32
648 posts
Busy bee

Do either of you work or are you all home every day? Because I could see how even your best friend or partner could get on your nerves in that situation. 

Post # 33
2254 posts
Buzzing bee

anonbee23 :  You’re welcome.

I hope the rest of your time staying there flies by, so you don’t have to walk on eggshells anymore.

Post # 34
950 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

I can’t believe how mean some posters are being OP. It’s not your sisters house she is staying rent free so that means she might occasionally be inconvenienced.

if she’s in her mid 20s surely she is capable of moving to her her own small place to avoid situations like this, otherwise you suck up the fact you might be put out by visitors for 2months in exchange for zero living expenses.

I could see how she might be annoyed if this was an ongoing situation with no end date but you clearly have a house to move in to and are over halfway through your stay. She doesn’t have to sit on the ground and play with the kid all day but to not even be polite to your own little niece is heartbreaking. My sister never wants her own kids and needs 24hrs sleep a day and she still loves having her toddler niece around. I had a horrible aunt like that, we all ended up cutting her out of our lives as she was so toxic. She is single and has no friends or family now so that worked well for her.

Post # 35
1399 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2020

anonbee23 :  I understand that this conversation is daunting, and that youryo afraid for things getting worse, but I don’t see how it’s going to get any better if you don’t communicate.

Simply be gentle and ask for any ideas on how to make this experience better for both of you. I don’t see how she could end up more upset with you by you asking for help and ideas to make you both less miserable.

Post # 36
193 posts
Blushing bee

I don’t think this is so much of your sister not liking her niece but more of your sister not wanting to live with a kid.  While I realize that kids are people too and should be treated as such, I personally could not live with a new roommate who is breaking stuff, throwing tantrums, screaming in the middle of the night and wanting attention from me….I kind of feel like you set your sister and your daughter up for failure by not planning better and making different living arrangements.  

Post # 37
1768 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

Dude,  why doesnt your adult sister have her own place?  Beggars can’t be choosers,  so when living off the kindness of family,  sometimes you have to make compromises.

TBH, I’d ignore your sister in this instance and keep parenting your child and living in the manner that makes you comfy.  You have less than a month left. 

If your sister doesn’t like kids,  she probably isn’t going to suddenly get to liking your daughter no matter what you do so I wouldn’t worry about their future relationship.  If your sister misses out on knowing her niece,  that’s her loss. 

Post # 38
3670 posts
Sugar bee

anabolina :  I agree with this 100%.

Your sister has no more of a right to be there than you. Make yourself comfortable, put your daughters toys out, and ignore your sister. Maybe when your daughter attempts to interact with her you can redirect your daughter so she doesn’t experience any nasty attitude from your sister. I understand not liking kids, but being a dick to an innocent two year old is messed up. 

Post # 39
7778 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

Well since it isn’t your sister’s house and she isn’t paying rent she should suck it up. She sounds like a bitch. It’s only for 2 months- not an eternity.

Post # 40
74 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

Honestly, that sounds like a complete nightmare to me. I feel like it sucks both ways, however, your younger sister made it clear she doesn’t like kids and now she’s stuck living with a toddler. I’d be pretty grumpy too if I had to hear tantrums all day and be woken up during the night. No, she doesn’t pay rent, but I can still see where the frustration would come from because she’s used to being alone. You’re used to your toddler, she’s not. I think you need to cut her some slack. I don’t think she’s being mean to your daughter, just indifferent. Could she say hi? Yes, but she’s probably so frustrated over the lack of space and sleep and apprehension of things breaking and crying that she’s just over it. This is a huge change in lifestyle for her so that’s something to be aware of. Maybe a conversation with her (when she’s not mad) would be a good idea. What are your expectations of her? What are her expectations of you both? It may be eye opening. This is situation is temporary at least and soon you’ll be out of there. 

Post # 41
1985 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2016

anonbee23 :  if it was the other way round, you’d moved in first (not paying rent) and staying longer. Then your sister and her dog moves in with you. You don’t particularly like dogs and never want one of your own, but it’s your sisters and you have to deal with it. Now the relatives who are kindly letting you stay didn’t ASK you about this and you feel you can’t say no because well you are taking the same opportunity. But you’ve been there long enough to get settled and really never wanted a dog.

The dog is unsettled and cries in the night because it’s a strange place. The dog has also chewed a pair of your shoes, your sister replaced them but it’s not the same it is? There are dog toys everywhere and dog biscuits in the kitchen. The place is already small and there’s a dog charging round all the time. The garden also gets dirty when the dog has to go outside and sometimes your sister doesn’t clear it up straight away. Are you not getting frustrated with your sister? Do you want to constantly stroke her dog? When it’s pestering you for attention is that going to make you more amenable to it or less? Are you going to be worried about what the dog wrecks next and you might get blamed for it in this house that isn’t yours, because you’re there longer than your sister.

I lived in my inlaws old place, we paid rent and unlike a traditional rental we also did all the maintenance on the house so for example when the shower broke we paid to fix it. It was our space. We paid for it with rent every month. It doesn’t matter that my landlords were my inlaws we still should have been able to create our own space. My BILs marriage was having issues and he ended up living with us for a month. He was messy, noisy and slept at different times to us. He disrupted our whole routine, he ate our food and drank constantly. He couldn’t contribute to the rent, he didn’t pay us back for the month he lived with us or offered his parents anything. He didn’t pay us back for the food or the beer he drank. He ordered takeaway all the time though. He didn’t help in the house at all, didn’t do washing up once, offer to cook once or even out his own laundry on once. He treated us like a hotel. And we had to put up with it because we were renting from family. I think most people can agree my Brother-In-Law was unreasonable and sharing your living space with some unreasonable for a short amount of time is exhausting and stressful and a nightmare. Honestly, your toddler sounds like most toddlers which is unfortunately unreasonable to most adults. Yes those with toddlers or who have had kids get it, get there’s a lot going on for them so they get a bit of a free pass on being reasonable. To everyone else without toddlers, they just seem like unreasonable mini humans and the difference is you can’t reason with them or shout at them the same because they don’t get it.

I think you both need to sit down and work out how you can both minimise the stressful situation.

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