Dealing with the in-laws

[deleted account] ( 13 moms have responded )

How do you gently deal with a sweet mother in law who doesn't necessarily want to play by your rules in terms of pacifiers, letting them cry, feeding times, holding, etc.?

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[deleted account]

I agree with ou on the pac. I might be overreacting a bit with not wanting my child to be addicted to anything. I;ve told her he doesn't need his paci at times but when I leave the room and come back, there he is, sucking away. And I thought my husband was with me, but just the other day, we were oer and she started talking about giving him chocolate when he is older. We had decided to not give him sweets for as long as humanly possible, but he just started agreeing with his mom and quoting the benefits of chocolate. I was devastated! My biggest fear is that when my boy has to stay with her in the fall during the day while I finish student teaching that all my hard work is going to go right out the window...

[deleted account]

You may not like my answer, but I tend to be very blunt. I've had the same problem with my mother-in-law. What I found worked for me was to take a moment to figure out which things are truely very important to you. For example: I have a no paci policy. It was definately an important rule to me especially the 1st few weeks because I'm a nursing mom, plus I don't want to have to deal with weaning a child from a paci. Once you have it figured out what of these things are and why they are so important to you, take a moment of your time to sit down with your mother in law and explain these feelings. She'll most likely take your words to heart and understand and appreciate the way you are mothering her grandkids. As far as the things that didn't make you very important list, maybe holding? You have to remember these are her grandbabies and most grandparents feel its their "right" to spoil them. I know we as mothers don't always like to think of things in that point of view because they are OUR children and no one else's, but as long as the things that are at the top of your list are met, I think that allowing a little wiggle room will make everyone happy. Like I said, it may not be the answer you were looking for but a little compromise will go a long way. Hopefully I helped in some odd/random way.

Julia - posted on 06/03/2009

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I had this problem with my mother in law . And what you need to do is have your hubby talk to her and the way you guys do things and let her and everyone else know that you have set rules that you are going to follow and if she doesn't like it then she cant come over . Im telling you its a hard thing to do and say , but in the end it is well worth it. Always keep in mind that Lucas is your son and you do know best .

Holly - posted on 06/02/2009

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well i thin its your children and they should go by your wishes and your husbands as long as it is not huriting the child .i would ask her politey not to do that ,if she does it again ,maybe ask your hubby to step in ,if he wont thean ask her to sit and you will explain it

Christine - posted on 06/02/2009

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I know...it's extra hard when they are sweet.

I think I am the opposite of you regarding pacifiers and letting them cry. I did not want to have my son use the pacifier, however when she watched him she would shove it in his mouth and hold it there until he started sucking. Shortly after he was addicted and I could not leave the house without the blankity blank thing. It ruled my life and had to eventually cry it out. Also a point of contention.

And what is with the constant feeding??? I am made to feel as though I am starving my child, but I digress as this is your question/rant not mine...



They ignore you, well more like selective hearing. They think they know what is best, but you can and must lay down the law in the end. Do it in a happy, quiet and respective manor.

Say it nicely, jokingly once or twice but if she still does it her way or comments on how to do it best. I tell her that this is the way it works best with my baby, I tried ‘that’ before but I get better results with this method. Most importantly you and hour husband need to be a team and on the same page so he can be your back up. Works best when the conversation happens in an open non-confrontational/non-private place.

If you are in good with her other sons or daughters talk to them as well, they don’t want the embarrassing pushy mom, I was lucky and my sis in law asked me if it irritated me when she did a-b or c.



Let me know what works for you as this is a saga that never ends….

Jamie - posted on 06/02/2009

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I have the same problem. My mother and my mother in law both have different views than I do... I smile politely and comment that the doctor and all the books I've read say that this way this the best way currently and that I'm following the book. Not to discredit their opinions, but gently let them know that the professionals have done alot more research since we were children!

Danielle - posted on 06/02/2009

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You could ask her what she did with your spouse to try to take the focus off of what you are doing or what you want done. You could mention that your pediatrician suggests you do this or that so that it sounds like it's coming from someone other than you. You are his mother so the way you want things done is how it should go. If you don't see her too often though it might just be easier to let her do it her way.

User - posted on 06/02/2009

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I had the same problem but it was with my own grandmother. I wrote down what his daily schedule was including nap times, feeding times, etc. I would simply put it on my fridge or in the diaper bag and explained that it is beneficial for your child to stay on the same schedule in order to have consistancy.

Ashley - posted on 06/02/2009

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when my daughter was only a few months old my mother-in-law didnt like the fact we made out daughter wait 3 hours between feed (she though she should be damand feed, which i didnt agree with) and one day she comented about how i should be feeding her whenever she wants her bottle. i simply said "Daniel and claire are your children you can do what you want with them, but Kailee is my daughter and this is the way i am doing things. i am her mother and i know best." She never said anything about it again.

Tiffany - posted on 06/02/2009

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My little one spent the night with his Mee Mee (fiance's grandmother) for the first time last night and she gave him too many ounces at each feeding. She doesn't think I'm feeding him enough haha. If it becomes a problem physically with him I'll use the "the doctor said he's eating too much" explanation. I worked at a daycare for 4.5 years through college and Mee Mee also worked there for 15 years so I know she's trustworthy. If something becomes a problem, I would probably explain that I am the one who will have to deal with the consequences of her actions. My fiance has a 6 year old who is the best little boy. He has spent a lot of time at Mee Mee's ever since he was a baby, and when he comes home from Mee Mee's and while he's at Mee Mee's he is a completely different little boy!! He has an attitude and acts as if no rules apply to him. When kids are older they can distinguish between rules in different environments (church, school, home, grandparents) but as babys it's so much harder cause that's when everything is being instilled in them :( good luck!

Brittany - posted on 06/02/2009

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I don't know how you can. I had a problem with my mother because she kept saying that dressing small girls in halter tops and miniskirts is cute which is something I am against with my daughter. My mom even made the comment that "what happens at grandmas stays at grandmas" I told her that if grandma couldn't follow the rules she wouldn't spend the night at grandma's. My mom as agreed to my rules. I explained to her why they were so important to me.



Maybe you can just tell her nicely that you have your ways you want your baby to be taken care of. If she can't follow your guidelines, then the baby can't stay with her without you or your husband until the baby is older. And if she agrees, make a list together going over all your preferences you feel strongly about.

Brittany - posted on 06/02/2009

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I don't know how you can. I had a problem with my mother because she kept saying that dressing small girls in halter tops and miniskirts is cute which is something I am against with my daughter. My mom even made the comment that "what happens at grandmas stays at grandmas" I told her that if grandma couldn't follow the rules she wouldn't spend the night at grandma's. My mom as agreed to my rules. I explained to her why they were so important to me.



Maybe you can just tell her nicely that you have your ways you want your baby to be taken care of. If she can't follow your guidelines, then the baby can't stay with her without you or your husband until the baby is older. And if she agrees, make a list together going over all your preferences you feel strongly about.

[deleted account]

i have the same problem, i talked to my hubby about it and asked him to have a quiet word with her. If that doesnt work maybe you could politely say somthing

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