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How to diplomatically tell my DM she can't mind DD

(22 Posts)
Helgathehairy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:05:38

Trying to keep this short. DD is 1 and I visit my parents with her 3 times a week. I try not to hover but my DM sees no danger in letting DD shake the wobbly tv stand with the TV on top, slick her hands in the coal bucket or play with small balls of tinfoil.

I think a situation might come up today where she suggests her minding DD for an hour or two is the perfect solution. It actually would be except for the fact I'm not happy to leave DD with her. She knows I've let DD with PIL so I can't just say I'm not leaving her yet.

Not sure how to say "I don't trust you to look after her safely" diplomatically.

NumTumDeDum Fri 08-Aug-14 09:10:32

Blame the house not her. I'd go with it's not child proofed instead.

Hakluyt Fri 08-Aug-14 09:12:12

Could she look after her at your house?

Shia Fri 08-Aug-14 09:15:10

Suggest ways to make the house safer.

Make a list of the things in her house that present a reasonable danger and discuss with her the ways of making it safe.

You may have to pay for things like stair gates etc.

You grew up, presumably unharmed in her care.

I think it would be wrong to deny her or your daughter time together, so could your mum come to you?

LilyandGinger Fri 08-Aug-14 09:20:05

We resolved this situation with evening babysitting. They were l asked to babysit while children were nearly ready for bed/already sleeping.

After a while we asked them to babysit for the afternoon in our house while we nipped out to the shops/went for coffee.

The children were nearly 4 before they had them unsupervised outside our house but I don't think they ever noticed. In addition to the babysitting they got lots of day trips/visits with the children while we were there.

I have similar problem but mine also has a jealously angle between the two grandmas. I sat them down separately and told them we have house rules when looking after our ds these include no taking him upstairs as my mums has no banister and no carpet and stair gates to just name a few. stairgates is mainly for mil who has lots of animals.

I found telling them that the rules applied to both helped them understand, and they both agreed. maybe be a bit more assertive when there and say don't do that or don't let her play with that. and say why you don't like it, your the mum.

NoTeaForMe Fri 08-Aug-14 09:27:47

I have this with my MiL, there's no way I'd ever leave my children there in the daytime. I have, about 3 times, let them stay there whilst asleep and my husband and I have gone out for a meal then come back. If she ever offers I always say 'thanks but there's no need' or something along those lines. I'm very careful not to mention it if I ever need childcare for any reason. Luckily my husband feels more strongly about this than I do!

Mrsjayy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:30:38

I am assuming you grew up alright no major catatrophe if you were harmed in childhood then of course yanbu but if your mum managed to raise you with no real harm yabu and a wee bit overprotective. But of course it is your decision and why dont you have your mum babysit at your house.

Mrsjayy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:32:11

What fanjo said just say mum I dont want her playing with that

Helgathehairy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:32:34

This situation is just for today - DM wants/needs to wait in for a delivery so can't come to mine.

I could go with the house not being child proofed (it really isn't) but DM is likely to be offended by that too. I think she'll be offended no matter what I say though so just need to accept it.

Deelish75 Fri 08-Aug-14 09:35:44

Is it her house that you think is dangerous or do you think she just doesn't SEE danger.
Will she leave really hot drinks in places your DD can get hold of? Does she leave little things (such as pen lids) lying arounds that your DD can choke on? Is she likely to leave tablets/ointments lying around where your DD can get hold of? (Speaks from bitter experience and these things happened in my own home)

Helgathehairy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:36:51

I was raised fine but that was 35 years ago. DM is considerably frailer now, has a lack of judgement over what is/isn't safe and admits herself that I was a calm baby who was in a playpen most of the day, and literally tied down in my cot at night.

Helgathehairy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:38:52

Deelish that's it exactly!! Even my 85 year old father has shouted at her leaving cups of tea within reach. She's also let DD alone with a roses tin full of tablets because she didn't think she could get the lid off. I walked into the room just as she pulled it off.

Mrsjayy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:40:29

If you really dont think she is able then you are just going to have to say no say she is such a handful mum it is not fair on you , or you could leave your baby for half an hour or so to see how it goes.

Deelish75 Fri 08-Aug-14 09:51:23

Don't do it, it really isn't worth the risk. You know your mum and how she will react, is she likely to listen and take on board what you are saying and understand the risks.

Could you show her images of scalded children? (Bit extreme but extreme measures are needed)

Helgathehairy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:54:39

When I've tried to explain before she just brushes it off. If I go in hard line she'll sulk. So be it though, the more I've typed the more I've decided it's definitely not going to happen.

Sneepy Fri 08-Aug-14 09:58:15

If she's going to be offended no matter what you say then I'd be blunt. "I won't leave her with you because your house is not safe and I'm worried she will be hurt." Maybe if you tell her straight she'll be shocked enough to make a change.

Mrsjayy Fri 08-Aug-14 10:02:15

Sneepy is right whatever you say she might get offended so if you dont feel your daughter is safe you are going to have to be direct.

Deelish75 Fri 08-Aug-14 10:06:31

Your daughter's safety takes priority over your mum's feeling. She's an adult she have to deal with it.
Good luck (it's not easy I know I've been there)

MrsKoala Fri 08-Aug-14 10:08:47

Mil always offered and we always said no. They seem to see no danger in anything. She sat 4mo ds on her kitchen work surface next to her while she was chopping onions, with massive knives laying about, his back right on the edge of the surface above a drop to the tiled floor. I only popped for a wee and asked her to hold him. When i returned i had to hurdle a chair to get to him just as he was throwing himself backwards and mil had turned her back to stir all the pots which were boiling over shock . i still run cold when i think about it. They keep saucers of moth balls all over their floors and fil keeps an open tub of choc peanuts on the floor by his chair. When i ask them to move them as ds will choke, they look at me blankly, nod, then put them back on the floor about a foot away from where they originally were hmm

i say 'no, it's fine, thanks' and leave it at that if possible. if Mil pushes i just say a firmer 'no' and smile and change the subject. She will say all the right things then completely ignore me. So it's easier to just say no.

meltedmonterayjack Fri 08-Aug-14 10:42:12

The leaving hot drinks around bit would do it for me. Having seen the permanent damage a cup of tea can do to a child's chest and arm, no way would I let your DM babysit. Toddlers have no sense of danger so you can't leave them with an adult who doesn't either imo.

Helgathehairy Fri 08-Aug-14 12:12:52

Quick update. The situation was avoided today as the package DM was waiting for arrived which meant she could leave the house. It will prob be an issue in future though.

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