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to be a bit worried about MIL babysitting...

(53 Posts)
kiki22 Sat 06-Aug-11 13:42:55

My MIL has said that once bump gets here she would like to keep baby once a month over night which is very nice of her but the thing is i'm very worried about letting her due to her views on child care but as my mum will be taking baby feel i can't say no.

My main issues are she believes that babys should not be picked up unless being fed or changed even if they are crying she says she left her 2 DS in the bouncy chair or cot 24/7 which i am just now happy with.

Her youngest DS by BIL didn't sleep well so she left him down stairs at night to cry alone without a baby monitor so she could sleep to me i would worry that if something does happen she wouldn't know.

And lastly she believes children should be seen and not heard and has in the past labled by 4 yr old niece a little madam for joining in a convo (which was about her starting school so i see no problem with her havin her own opinion on it) so i worry as baby gets older will be left to play alone constantly and not allowed to join in.

She is not the type of person either me or DP could speak to about it as she would just say she'll do it her way and it never hurt her boys (which is debatable youngest is gettin bullied and wont stand up for himself as doesnt know how and DP left home at 16 and had drug issues in the past with E and weed)

What do you think?

squeakytoy Sat 06-Aug-11 13:45:57

I think that is it your child. No baby needs to stay with the grandparents just because the grandparents demand it.

There is no reason for her to have sole charge of your child, she can see the child whenever you visit, or if she visits you.

As a child, I didnt stay overnight with anyone but my parents until I was about 5yrs old, and only then did I go to my grandparents on my own.

It is your child, nobody elses, so dont feel you have to give in to their selfish demands.

kiki22 Sat 06-Aug-11 13:50:45

The thing is the baby will be allowed to stay over night with my mum if need be so if i say no to her she will want to know why. My mum is a registered child minder with 15 yrs child care experiance and lives 6 mins walk (i did time it) from my door and is very flexable with diff parenting methods due to her work so will have no issues with doing things how i want them to be done.

I wouldn't have an issue with baby staying over night if i could trust her to do things our way and not her own.

squeakytoy Sat 06-Aug-11 13:54:11

It is still upto you. We have never had our granddaughter overnight, and have never asked or expected to, and she is 6 now. She stays at her mums mothers house overnight regularly, and we dont have any issues with that.

There is no reason though for your MIL to even know when your mum has your child, you dont need to tell her.

If it does come to it, be honest, and tell your MIL that you dont agree with the way she would be looking after your child.

ledkr Sat 06-Aug-11 13:56:17

I cant understand why if she got so little enjoyment from her own dc's she would want another baby to stay confused My 5th baby is 6months and i wouldnt like her to stay anywhere overnight yet,i think you will be surprised.

kiki22 Sat 06-Aug-11 14:01:40

I do wonder that myself TBH i think it's more she feels she should because my mum is than actually wanting to but as i said my mums mins away loves kids specially her grandchildren and we are a very very close family MIL visits once a month and gets annoyed if my niece is here... maybe i could just win the lotto and have a full time nanny instead smile

CBear6 Sat 06-Aug-11 14:05:42

If we ever need an overnight babysitter then DS goes to my mum's, she also does most of our non-overnight babysitting although FIL has him now and then but at our house not his.

Step-FIL isn't in the best of health so he doesn't babysit DS and we don't speak to MIL so he never goes there (he didn't even when we were speaking because I had the same issues of not trusting her). When my mum has him he goes to her house, she's just around the corner. When FIL has him he stays at our house because FIL has an elderly cat which DS won leave alone, the house is very small and cluttered, and FIL smokes indoors, albeit only in the kitchen but DS still smells of it and is wheezy when he comes home from visiting so for babysitting he stays here where it's smoke-free and he has his toys, etc.

This is your baby and if you're uncomfortable with him/her going somewhere you just need to say no. You don't need to give an explanation or justify. As for the whole playing turns thing, that doesn't apply when it comes to handing your child over to someone you don't entirely trust, babies aren't toys.

There's no real need for a newborn to sleep over anywhere to begin with, I think DS was about six months old when he slept at my mum's for the first time, before that we were just picking him up on our way home when we went out together. You could always see how MIL is with the baby when she visits you or you visit her, if she's still very hands-off then just say no when she asks to babysit or a more diplomatic "thanks for the offer but we've already made arrangements".

What does your DP think of the situation?

squeakytoy Sat 06-Aug-11 14:09:07

You need to be firm from the off, you really really do. It sounds more like jealousy and entitlement than wanting to be a loving grandparent.

In any case, what bloody fun does a grandparent get from a child who is not walking or talking? We were more than happy to just see our granddaughter while she was with her parents when she was so young, as it was my stepson and his partner who we wanted to see too.

Fair enough if grandparents are stepping in to help out in an emergency, or if the parents want to go out for the night, but to demand or expect to have a child overnight when there is no need for it is just weird when they are so tiny.

kiki22 Sat 06-Aug-11 14:15:44

DP thinks his mum is 'the way she is' and we should just let the baby stay to keep the peace as one night a month won't hurt. I wouldn't want to cause a rift and leave her feeling she is not to see the baby as i believe that having a lot of family around and spending time with other people is good for children but i don't trust her to do it my way, she is quite far away and don't like the idea of it being strictly once a month (my mum babysits on a when she feels like it or if u really need me to basis and feel thats better).

Feel like i'm stuck between a rock and a hard place!

mischiefmummy Sat 06-Aug-11 14:28:07

There would be no way I could let any of my DCs stay with anyone who would not given them a cuddle and reassurance if they were distressed. Wouldn't matter if they were 3 days old or 10 years old. Children of all ages need attention and nurturing and clearly your MIL has no such nurturing instincts!! If you are BF you could certainly use that as an excuse and I would simply say you don't feel an overnight stay is appropriate until the child is old enough to make a choice about staying with grandma. If she pushes you - be frank and tell her the truth.

valiumredhead Sat 06-Aug-11 14:31:17

Try not to worry about this til the baby is actually here, then you can turn into an 'extremely over protective parent who just can't stand to let your precious bundle out of your sight' wink

How will your MIL know that your mum has the baby over night unless you tell her? wink

bananasplitz Sat 06-Aug-11 14:31:25

one day a month i dont think would affect them. as they got older they would vocalise not wanting to go if they didnt

people act differently with grandkids than they do with their own kids

and i agree a four year old shouldnt be butting into adults conversation, thats just plain rude and bad manners

ENormaSnob Sat 06-Aug-11 14:32:37

So you would put your babys needs second to keeping the peace?

Nice hmm

GhoulLasher Sat 06-Aug-11 14:34:41

Your Mother is not your MIL....your baby is your baby. There's no tit for tat in child rearing. What you say goes.

Katisha Sat 06-Aug-11 14:39:22

What is the point of sending the baby to either of them overnight? He/she is not a parcel to be shared about.
If you need a babysitter fine, as and when, but I really don't see the point of a monthly arrangement where you HAVE to send the child there for MIl to "have a go".
How far away is she?

kittensliveupstairs Sat 06-Aug-11 14:46:02

I was wondering that Katisha. Why would you need to send your baby away for a night. I didn't.

squeakytoy Sat 06-Aug-11 14:47:58

I think an older toddler or child would find it beneficial and it gives the parents a break, but a baby needs routine and familiarity wherever possible.

MmeLindor. Sat 06-Aug-11 14:55:29

Don't turn this into a thread asking why the OP wants to let her mum babysit. Some people don't do this until their children are older, some are ok with it almost from birth. That is the OP's decision to make, and not what she is asking.

OP
You need to put the welfare of your baby first. Believe me, eight now it is academic but when your baby is here, you will not be able to stand the thought of your baby crying for hours because your MIL doesn't agree with picking babies up.

You would be miserable all night. What would be the point.

And I do think that even once a month is too much.

If your MIL thinks that babies don't need love, affection and cuddles, then she shouldn't be looking after your child.

northerngirl41 Sat 06-Aug-11 15:11:47

And yet she still has two grown up sons, one of whom was presumably undamaged enough for you to marry and have a child with...

My views are actually that it makes very little difference what you do with babies and children (barring abuse obviously!). They won't remember and you can't tell which ones were left to cry and which ones were breastfed and which ones were fed organic produce when they get to high school.

Having said that, it's your child, so your rules. Now either she will respect that, and do things your way or she says "What nonsense!!" and continues to do things her way. And if the latter is the case, then you have the option of not allowing her to have the baby and having one very hurt MIL and a massive family argument. It depends how important this stuff is to you I suppose.

My MIL is the most lovely woman but her ways are not mine - but she raised two children successfully and safely, and I get to have my own way most of the time so the odd occasion doesn't really bother me too much. It's the cost of having a break from the kids and a cheap one at that!

EuphemiaMcGonagall Sat 06-Aug-11 15:15:40

Overnight babysitters envy

Mitmoo Sat 06-Aug-11 15:22:24

I would worry myself stupid if she left a baby crying so she could get her sleep, anything could be wrong. I'd be concerned that she'd say she'd do it her way but carry on regardless.

I had a stand off with my own Mum who wanted to look after my son while I worked part time. She adored him but was determined if he was naughty she's smack him. The argument was that it didn't do her five any harm.

But there was no way I was going to let a child of mine be smacked. So she had to decide it was my way or no way. This was my child, my rules.

If you think for a second your child might not be safe, you think she'll leave the baby crying and go for a kip, then don't, it's your choice.

HappyAsASandboy Sat 06-Aug-11 15:38:42

I wouldn't worry about it for now, as baby is not here yet. I found it so much easier to stand up to well-intended-but-not-how-I-want-to-do-things advice than I ever thought I would. TBH my babies are the most important things, and so they don't get left with people just to keep the peace! TBH I rarely leave them.

I live about an hour from my mum, and 2 hours from PIL. I see my mum several times a week, and sometimes leave my babies with her for an hour or two to have a bath/sleep/go to the dentist. We see PIL about 6 times a year, and I've never left the babies with them as there's been no need. They see the babies when we're all together, and because that happens rarely, I don't use those visits for catching up on sleeping/washing hair etc like I do when my mum is over.

My twins are 9 months old now, and I've not needed to leave them overnight yet. If I did have to, then I'd leave them with my mum as I know how she cares for them as we've spent lots of time caring for them toghether. I wouldn't leave them with MIL as I ha net seen her do more than hold a baby. She's not coped with an upset baby, changed a nappy, prepared their food, fed them, put them to bed etc before, so no way I'd leave them to it at 9 months. Maybe when they're 8!?

TBH I don't see the need for confrontation or discussions with your MIL about it - just don't let the situation where she has sole care arise. If she has a problem with what you arrange re Childcare, let her raise it and then answer honestly. In your case, if she asks why you always use your mum when you have to leave baby, tell he it's because you feel more comfortable asking for favours from your mum, and that you know she has a similar childrearing style to you as you've seen her working with babies. MIL can only really then say she doesn't mind being asked, and you can then just carry on as normal.

I agree with one of the other replies - no need for a monthly arrangement, just ask whoever you'd like whenever the situation arises (which isn't that often in my life!). Take care not to make 'a thing' out of this, when all you may need to do is smile vaguely and then do your own thing smile

WhoseGotMyEyebrows Sat 06-Aug-11 15:47:08

I wouldn't do it because:

She doesn't seem to like children at all.

They are not allowed to speak around her.

She gets annoyed when she has to be in the company of your neice.

She puts her own needs far above a babys (leaving baby downstairs all night 'cause he was crying!)

Doesn't believe in cuddling or handling babies.

I think that it enough reasons not to by a long way. Maybe next time she mentions it just say "oh but you don't want to look after the baby, I know you don't really enjoy it" in a dismissive way and just leave it at that. If she wants to argue about it you've got plenty of ammo there.

DizzyKipper Sat 06-Aug-11 15:50:41

Why not just tell her if she asks that you won't leave the baby with her specifically because you know she won't respect your parenting wishes and will do things her way and not yours.

YouDoTheMath Sat 06-Aug-11 15:51:54

If she's adamant she's going to do it her way, and you're not happy with her way, then you either need to talk to her and ask her to respect your way of doing things, or you just need to say no to the whole idea of her babysitting.

I know you say you can't talk to her, but when it comes to the wellbeing of your child, I'm afraid you have to.

It's really not her decision that counts.

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