Need Some Help!!

Tabby - posted on 12/09/2010 ( 7 moms have responded )




Hi, so my mother-in-law is coming up for Christmas. My daughter has only met her once for like 2 hours when she was 2 months old, she's 10 months now. Well Madison hates strangers, she doesn't like them touching her or talking to her. She's fine with people passing her in the store but god forbid they try and talk to her. When we're at home and someone comes over she grabs my pant legs and buries her face in my legs and cries when I try to peel her off me. If someone tries to hard to play with her or hold her she becomes super clingy and won't let me put her down. My MIL expects for Madison to remember her and run up and let her hold her. I can tell you now that won't happen... my MIL is also one of those people who will cry if things don't go her way (yup, I said cries). I've tried to explain to my MIL how Madison is and that it will take several days before she will let her hold her. The response I got was "Oh I'm sure it'll only take a few minutes". How can I explain to my MIL how Madison is without having to deal with her crying? Also how can I keep her from trying to hold Madison and play with her until Madison has gotten used to her?


Amy - posted on 12/09/2010




Any way you can get a web cam so that your daughter can hear and see her before your MIL gets there, it might make the adjustment period shorter if she has some exposure to grandma before she actually arrives.

Jody - posted on 12/09/2010




That brings back memories but with my Mom. She would make appointments to come visit, expect our kids to sit at her feet and listen to her every word.. for her 20 minute visit. They were 1 & 3 years old. Now what child is going to do that for anyone, especially the ones they don't know? It hurt my Mom's feelings but I knew I'm not responsible for her relationship with her grandkids.
Your MIL will find out soon enough you know what you are talking about. We had a granddaughter that was like that, she cried even when she looked at me. Yes, I felt bad until I realized I needed to work our relationship in her way, not mine :) Now when she sees me I get a big huge. She just turned 1 years old.
I don't have to tell you I love every minute of those hugs!
Good luck!


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Laura - posted on 12/09/2010




It's very hard when family lives that far away. My parents only see my kids like 5 or 6 times a year. My 4 year old is great now but it still takes awhile for my 2 year old to get comfortable even when we spend a lot of time looking at pictures and talking on the phone. It is so hard on my mom when they won't run up and give her a hug but she understands it will take time. It might hurt but your MIL is just going to have to see for herself. One thing that helped with my kids is when Grandma and Grandpa had there favorite food or their favorite toy they would be more likely to go up and get it from them.

I know when my youngest was about that age he was scared when I would walk into the house and my transition lenses were dark or when my FIL (who the boys see all the time) would come in with a hat on. He would have nothing to do with him until he took the hat off.

Like I said I think it's going to be tough for your MIL but she's just going to have to see for herself and get used to it. It's just how kids are.

Pamela - posted on 12/09/2010




Take it as it comes. Don't worry about it now - just let things happen. She'll be just fine and might surprise you. If not, let your mil know and she should understand!

Laura - posted on 12/09/2010




Your MIL simply doesn't believe you. You have done due diligence in trying to forewarn her, but she is choosing to ignore you. She will have to find out the hard way. Then there will be that great moment when "I told you so" will be a serious temptation! Your MIL is an adult and if she chooses to act immature about the meeting then that is on her, not you. You only need to worry about your daughter and comforting her. Your MIL will be a guest in your home so set the rules about dealing with your daughter firmly and up front (I had to do something similar when my daughter was little). Communicate all of this with your husband so that you both are on the same page! Be a team! Have your husband deal with his mom by reminding her that it will just take a bit of time for your daughter to warm up to grandma.

It may or may not help but you can try explaining to your MIL that your daughter is going through a developmental stage right now called "separation anxiety". This is where infants/toddlers begin to differentiate themselves from parents and others and this stage can be frightening to them. That's why your daughter has become clingy. It's a normal growth phase with some kids barely noticing or having a problem and others, like your dughter, have a harder time with it. Either way just be prepared for crying, but only deal with your daughter's tears--MIL is a grown up and needs to deal with it on her own! Best wishes for you and your family!

Tabby - posted on 12/09/2010




Amy- They're coming next weekend and have already left their house because they are visiting other family on their way up here. I had thought of that idea but thought of it to late :-( I tried letting her hear her over the phone and as soon as she got out "Madison, this is grandma..." Madison started crying.

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