May 2012 Moms

MIL "deserves" to babysit

My mil is just plain offended that we havent left our dauger in her care yet.  The situation just sucks, and she cornered me yesterday about it.  She basically said that I was doing a disservice to my daughter by never leaving her with another adult.  That I was making her clingy and dependent on her mom.  And said that she "deserved" to have her once in a while.  Since before my daughter was born, she has been saying again and again how excited she is to babysit, especially have all the little cousins over at her house for the weekend...

any advice on how to talk to her would be welcomed.

the truth is, I have left my daughter with my mom, during nap times, to run errands, make appts, etc.  growing up, my mom was like the "safety police", and knowing that is the kind of environment I'm leaving my daughter in is so comforting.  My husband however grew up in the opposite environment.  Cleanliness and safety are a huge concern for me when we are visiting my MIL, and that is with me there... (Other disagreements of ours yesterday included why I wouldn't let me 13 month old have a tractor ride, why i brought my own organic Mac n cheese for her to eat instead of using hers, and why I chose to let dd decide if she feels comfortable playing in the water at the beach as opposed to picking her up and dunking her legs).

 She lives an hour and a half away.  The only solution I have thought of is to ask her down to our home more often, and leave her strict instructions ... I'm just really struggling.... And don't want to take my anger out on her or my husband.

 Is anyone else out there in a similar situation? 


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Re: MIL "deserves" to babysit

  • I would NEVER allow my MIL to babysit my children for many, many reasons.  However, my MIL never wants to babysit either.  Honestly, if you don't feel comfortable, it is your choice.  You are the mother of the child.  I wouldn't do it just to appease her, especially if you have safety concerns.  

    Although, I think bringing your own organic mac n cheese is extreme, unless your LO has special dietary needs.  My kids always eat organic when at home, but we do go out every weekend and eat non-organic food at restaurants, parties, people's homes. 

  • Those situations usually go through my husband. If you are not comfortable then you are not comfortable. We aren't ready for MIL to watch DD yet and I'm sure she's not happy about it. It's a mutual agreement between my husband and I. She is allowed to come visit DD anytime. I'm sure when DD is older we will then let her watch her. It's just a difficult age right now. On another note we never tell MIL when my mom watches DD. If she asks we lie to spare her feelings.
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  • My mother has baby-sat for DD but my MIL is not "allowed". For much of the same reasons as you stated. I know how my mom is with kids because I've literally been there lol. She's just very cautious without being crazy over-protective, and kids just seem to be very receptive to her. MIL on the other hand is a nice lady, but I've never seen any kids in the family warm to her. Also we've had issues in the past with us saying one thing and her doing another when it comes to DDs care, and I'm not over that lack of trust yet.

    Anyway; if she ever told me she "deserved" to watch her I'd tell her that as my child's mother I "deserve" to make whatever calls/decisions I see fit. When you are comfortable, you will let her know; until then she can cool it.

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  • I think it's important for kids to have a great relationship with their grandparents regardless of your feelings. Plus I do think bringing your own Mac n cheese is a bit over board.

    Also remember your mil raised your dh the man you feel in love with and had lo with.
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  • If you aren't comfortable with MIL babysitting then don't allow it. It took me a while to trust my DD with MIL. Actually, she still only watches her at our house.
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  • It's hard to give advice without a little more info. (You don't have to answer there just putting them out there to think about.) Are there other personal feelings you have against your mother in law that are underlying your decision to not allow her to babysit? Has she ever done anything blatant to harm little one? Does she have a history of poor parenting to your DH? Are your parenting standards much more rigid than most people? Do you have an anxiety disorder that may sway your decision? 

    If it were me, base on what you've shared, I would probably let her babysit and learn to get over my dis-ease with her watching LO. (though I tend to be really laid back about parenting).

    Whatever decision you make, it's the right choice. You and DH are the parents. Since it's his mother, DH (or you two together) should be the one to sit down and talk to her. Good luck!


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  • I could have written part of this post myself. My MIL has a filthy home and does not seem nearly as concerned with safety as I am. She has only ever watched DD one time and it was at our house for less than 2 hours. She doesn't ask to watch her which makes me very happy. I hope it stays that way. Although it does upset me sometimes that she makes much more of an effort to spend time with her grandson than my daughter. 
  • k4slr6k4slr6
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    We are lucky both of our parents live within 20 min of our house.  My mom watches LO once a week.  MIL lives 1 mile away so I have gotten more comfortable with her watching LO when I couldn't get off work--I work 45 min away and daycare is 5 min from our house.  She is more more free spirited than we are and we are pretty relaxed, but she would never let anything happen to DD.  We live on a farm so DD has had tractor rides, trencher rides and will have rides in the combine this fall.  Her first ride was at 6 months.  DD eats what they are eating for lunch.  At first I was afraid she wouldn't cut things up small enough so I sent fruit and veggie cups that were precut.  Then I remembered she has 2 kids that are now adults and has 2 small grandkids so i got over that quickly.  MIL did offer to take DD with them on their week vacation to their cabin since we wanted to go out of town that weekend too..I said no to that one.  :)  But when she is 10 or so she might get to do that too.  DD has only spend the night once and that was at MIL's and once she did that (at 7 mos) I have had much more trust in her.  I do see how it could be hard with her living further away but maybe she could come to your house so you could go away for the day and build that trust.  I try to go on errands so MIL can babysit so they both get equal time.  MIL begs me to and even though I don't "need" to it is nice break and makes the errands go much more quickly.   

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