Mother-in-Law Drama... advice needed

Nancy - posted on 05/29/2012 ( 20 moms have responded )

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This weekend my in-laws were over and to give you an idea about my mother in law she is a very strong headed, stubborn, and pushy woman. I do love her and she has a good heart but at times its really hard to get things through to her. So she kept telling me how I should start feeding my 8 mos old eggs but I told her how I wanted to wait on feeding her certain feeds to just rule out any allergies n would feed her other feeds but hold off on the eggs for a bit. So we all had breakfast and while I was in the kitchen I saw her give my 8 mos old daughter a few bites of egg after I deliberately told her not too. I am really infuriated not at the egg situation but at how she always likes to do things her way in the end. So at this point I just decided that I am fed up with how she wants to be like a "parent" to my girls and do things her way after I tell her that I don't want her doing certain things with them. I am not sure how to get through to her but I am thinking of not talking to her and just not letting her babysit if she will continue to act this way. I am her mom not her. Anybody have any tips, advice, or ways to deal with such a mil?

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Bethany - posted on 06/07/2012

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what did you do as soon as you saw her do that? Run into the room and use your Mama Bear voice to say "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! I TOLD YOU I DIDN'T WANT HER TO HAVE EGG!!" and then go to your daughter and dig it out of her mouth as much as you could?

That would have sent a strong message. If you were 'nice' about it or ignored it, then it might not actually have meant that much to you after all. The egg I mean. And her respect for you.

I kept my daughter's processed sugar intake way low until she was at least 2, and once, my brother fed her Jelly (Jello) when we were at a restaurant. I hadn't spoken to him ever about my low/no sugar concept ever, but I soon let him know about it, and took her away from him to sit by me. It was behind my back, I was talking to someone facing the other way. I said "don't sneak sugar into my baby! You need to check with the parent before you feed a kid!" and he has two daughters of his own, but, still, clueless. But I spare no feelings when it comes to people doing things to my daughter behind my back. It is not on.

My family and friends do not give her anything without checking with me. I would never give any kid anything without checking with their Mum. I this age of allergies and alternate lifestyles, it is terribly disrespectful to give a kid anything without checking, and respecting the answer.

Put your Mummy hat on and put your foot down. When she visits, don't leave her alone with your MIL, take her with you int' the kitchen or where ever, and let your MIL know "I'll take her with me, I can't trust you any more" with a smile, or not, but still say why. And babysitting? that's a prevelige, she'll need to earn that. If she's your only option, then just sacrifice it and don't go, and let her know, we can't go, because you've lost my trust. Childhood is brief, respect will last a lifetime.

Rachel - posted on 06/17/2012

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...for instance, I recently read an article theorizing allergies develop when the body gets too much of one substance in a sitting. There is talk of revamping the food introductory schedule to always pair foods. Your MIL has likely seen many such changes, and we will likely see many more. We strive to be educated, but there will likely come a time when we too will roll our eyes. My MIL had my husband on ground meat at two months on doctors orders! But he survived. We don't have all the answers, so I personally feel we should put family ahead of whatever guinea pig experiment the doctors have lined up for us next. Tell your MIL what your wishes are, but honour her role as Grandparent, and don't make a federal case out of it if she won't change. It's just not worth it.

Rachel - posted on 06/17/2012

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Well, you have run the gambit on advice here. Here is mine. I have four kids now, and I have learned kids catch on quick to the two sets of rules. I stopped giving my mom directions. She sugar them up and let's them watch t.v. all day, then is exhausted the next morning because (surprise) they didn't go to bed. I shrug and say "they're asleep by 8 for me". And the next night, they are. They never pester me for juice or junkfood, like they do my mom. They don't even bother asking for a show. Let your Mil make her own choices. It's only her own grave she is digging. Relax. Yes, the egg thing would bother me, but its not worth sacrificing the relationship over. One persons advice was to ask your MIL to treat you like she wanted to be treated. Now, you treat her like you want your DIL to treat you.

Sally - posted on 06/17/2012

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All grandparents want to do things their way. Sometimes it's good to let them because all kids need a little spoiling. HOWEVER, if she is going against you in matters of health and safety (which this is), she does not get to be alone with your child EVER. If she doesn't like it, tough toenails. Your child's health and safety are more important than her feelings.

Jennifer - posted on 06/06/2012

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Here, the local hospitals offer Grandparenting classes. They are filled with updated information and how parents are taught to care for their children now and why. If you have such classes, you might want to suggest it as a resource tool so you can all be on the same page. My parents jumped at the chance. (Though I still have "discussions" with my Mom)

Fortunately, I learned early on to set boundaries with my MIL and our daughter. She basically raised my stepson and I watched her with my SIL's kids. There were just some things we didn't want repeated with her. I just had to firmly, but as respectfully as possible, remind her what we expected and what our rules are. We are her parents and she needs to respect that.

Case in point: Our daughter's pediatrician did not want her to start solids until she turned at least 5 months old due to some issues. My MIL kept trying to get me to feed her anyway. When I refused she would basically roll her eyes and tell me I was being stupid. I finally had enough and asked the doc for a note! I never had to actually give it to her, but it was ridiculous that it got to that point. We make choices for our children for a reason, and often based on far more information about the issue than folks that see them less often - not day to day. Hang in there and remember you are an ADULT, not a child. You have a right to have your wishes respected. As for babysitting, would you leave her with anyone else who disregarded your instructions?

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Kristie - posted on 07/10/2012

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Have you ever asked your in laws a question about something the baby and was told oh he's just spoiled. like for real

Kristie - posted on 07/10/2012

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I have the same my father in law hated me before he met me. WHatever he said mother in law listened to and took as hger views. Several years ago(like 3-4 years ago) husband told him that if he didn't start respecting me then he wouldn't see the grand kids. He has been nice ever since. When we had to stay with them(this was not to long after we got out of the Army and moved back to the states) we had our son and I was pregnant with our 2nd. There were doctors appointments that I went to unwashed(because we couldn't use their hot water, only MIL, FIL and BIL could), also over heard(hard not to in a trailer) he was going to send my fat a$$ back to BOston. NUmber 1 I did not marry him and who the heck did he think he was. He is/was like that with my brother in law's wife(she's from N.M). it really came down to one Thanksgiving we picked him up on way to grandmothers house(his mom) and I asked a question and he ignored me. I was so pissed like get yo butt out of our van. really? ugh atleast my mom only nags hubby about why I don't have drivers license yet(which she helped my brother and little sisters get theirs).. I saw a pattern I apparently don't amount to much but just with my kids and hubby. HAve your husband talk to her. Maybe she doesn't realize or she's just a b**ch. He needs to let her know that's not right and if they want to continue to see the grandkids then they need to show their mother some respect, especially in front of them

Amy - posted on 07/08/2012

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I totaly here you what are saying. You need to sit her down with your hubby and lay out all rules NOW. and explain to her what they are.That u are the parents to her grandkids not her and what u decide with or anything comes from u both not by her. She will prehaps fight or arruge with you im sure. but in the long run she will understand. Good luck. p.s. On the eggs, it is better to wait suck as for peanut butter for any Allergeries.

Erin - posted on 06/28/2012

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My Inlaws aren't that bad, anymore, lol. We had our issues with them as new parents and them as new grandparents. My parents have always been pretty good too. We have a rule now though. It kind of goes like this...

>Sure you can give them a treat or two, as long as it's before 630 pm. If it's after that, then the kids are spending the night at your place!

I guess it's kind of a "natural consequence" kind of thing too lol. Good luck. Dealing with Grandparents and other family members is tough, but only as much as you make it ;)

Tracie - posted on 06/25/2012

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I'm a big fan of natural consequences. The natural consequence of someone deliberately doing something with my child that they know I'm opposed to is that they are no longer welcome to spend time with my child. If you can't abide by my rules, you can't be around my kid. Pretty simple. Your husband should be the one to let his parents in on this rule, by the way.

I had to do this with my mom. She is Catholic "for show" and I left the church when I was a teenager. She told me once that she couldn't wait for her first chance to babysit so she could take my "heathen" baby and get her baptized. Thanks for the warning, mom! I let her know in no uncertain terms that she would never be left alone with my daughter, now that I knew what her plan was.

Bottom line, you're the mom, you make the rules. Period. End of story.

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I have the sand problem with my MIL we only go over there on Sundays and that's only sometimes.....they don't bother to visit us. We need to drag all 3 kids to their place. Drives me nuts.....so my older 2 girls 3 1/2 and 2 1/2 are good. When they were both around 4 months SHE gave them rice and they were on real table foods ever since. Now my baby boy who is 8 1/2 months is on baby food (my only kid who actually eats it) due to is diagnosis at birth I need to know exactly what I feed him how much and see how he does with it. So I am the only one to feed him (not even hubby maybe once so I could do some other things)

We went to my daughter dance recital and they have intermission and had like hotdogs, I had to do something so my husband had him then I see my husband and not my baby, his mother had him....well my mom told me after the recital that she gave him bread from the hot dog roll. OMG I was so mad. He didn't poop for 2 1/2 days.

Every time we go over there and eat, there is a reason y I hold him and don't let anyone else. So I had to tell her the next time we saw her that u can't feed him. I still don't think she gets it though. He was born with his intestines outside the body 3 1/2months in NICU and he's doing well but that's why I need to know what he eat how much.....

So no advice, I'm right there with u Good luck :)

Nadine - posted on 06/16/2012

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My mil has never said anything to my face and luckily we live far away so don't deal with this all the time. During our visit at Christmas however we were out to dinner, it was my husband, my two young girls, his mom, ain't and I. Our 5 month old needs her diaper changed so I took her to the bathroom and later found out that while I was gone she told my husband we were not raising our girls right. He cut her off before she could explain why and said that's your opinion but they are our children and we will raise them our way you don't have to like it but you do have to respect it and if you can't then you don't need to be around them. Haven't heard a word about it since.

Lisa - posted on 06/15/2012

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Seems to be a thing with MILs!! I had to drop my daughter off with mine so I could attend a doctors app, daughter had been playing up so the first thing I said to my MIL was "she's been naughty so no choc today" (she always gets choc at grannys house), my MIL looked at mr, took my daughters hand and said "come on and we'll get you some choc"!! I was furious but too gobsmacked to actually say anything!!

Sandra - posted on 06/11/2012

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You weren't overreacting at all! I think what you feel is normal and I give you credit for letting your mother-in-law live with you! I hope she realizes how lucky she is. Its hard to live with an inlaw. When they do something you don't like, you want to say something but not offend them. If she listens to you after you have a talk with her, that is great, but if she doesn't, have a talk with your husband about this. Try your best to peacefully resolve this issue!

Sandra - posted on 06/10/2012

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It sounds as though you like your mother-in-law and are mad at her. With that in mind, since you know she is well intentioned, I would have a talk with her about this. When you have the conversation, start off with telling her some things you like about her and how you understand her concern for your daughters. Then, nicely tell her what you would like for her to do. Then, if that doesn't work, talk to your husband about it and ask him to talk to her. Keep things as pleasant as you can so that you can keep the peace between you and your husband! Good luck!

Nancy - posted on 06/07/2012

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Thanks for the tips. I thought maybe I was overreacting for getting upset over this incident and the lack of respect for my rules for the girls. I do understand that she has experience but things change. Raising a child isn't the same in every generation just as when my girls grow up and have kids I would be afraid to give their kids anything.

Eron - posted on 05/30/2012

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I think you need to get this into perspective, you are making decisions for your children based on modern ideas (not a bad thing we all follow this kind of advice) your MIL has raised kids and is acting on her experience (also not bad) Im sure she does loads of things that bother you, but be fair...is she actually hurting your children? it doesnt sound like it, more like she gets on your nerves. I can understand that but try to remember she loves her grandkids and wouldnt do anything to hurt them. As for "not letting her babysit" your being silly, appreciate the help that you get, your lucky that she does babysit - she does it for them, not you x

Kelina - posted on 05/30/2012

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have ou tried asking her what she would have done to someone who didn't listen to her as a parent when her kids were little? that's how I had to put it to my mom when my son was born. She wanted to give him a bath while she babysat so I took over his bathtub and all his stuff and told her several times not to put him in the big tub. She still did it. I talked with her afterwards and her reply was that he was fine and he loved it, to which I said regardless, I'm his mom, and how furious would you have been if someone had done something like that with me? I'm not sure she expected me to turn it around on her like that but it worked big time. I'd love to say she never questioned my parenting again, but at least she never questioned my authority over certain things again. She decided to sit back and nitpick about bibs and the clothes he was wearing instead. frustrating but better!

Amy - posted on 05/30/2012

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I know how you feel. We lived with my MIL during my whole pregnancy and most of my sons first two years of life. I had problems with her holding him while he was sleeping when I am against that, every time i would have her watch him while I showered he would always be in her arms unless we told her every time to put him in the bed if he falls asleep. No matter what we said she did what she wanted thinking because shes grandma she can do what she wants since shes not the one dealing with the sleep problems we had at night. I think part of it was because when my husbands daughter was born she was able to watch her and his ex wife didn't what she did. Anyways it got to a point that my husband had to have a long talk with her about everything because if we said we dont want this or that happening she would roll her eyes. I felt as if she didnt respect me as a mother and it took a few talks to get her to finally start realizing that we're the parents that what we say goes. we are the ones that have to deal with all the problems when he doesnt sleep at night, doesnt listen when in trouble or gets into stuff that shouldn't be in his reach. So my advice is try to sit her down one on one or have your husband do it and tell her exactly how you feel and if she doesnt like it simply tell her well then you can't watch them anymore until you start respecting what we want for our children. I hope this helps.

Heather - posted on 05/29/2012

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I don't have any advice but know how you feel, my MIL and my husband grandmother are both this way with our child.

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