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Is this a bit weird or not?

(23 Posts)
Rollergirl1 Sat 24-Sep-11 23:36:26

Sorry, another MIL thread. I have my own history with MIL and intense weirdness, which I won't go in to.

Anyway, MIL looks after my DN (nephew) once a week. I hasten to add that we are 250 miles away so it's not something that we are involved in in any way. MIL has a big drawer full of spare clothes for DN. I have always assumed that they were provided by SIL. Anyway, something that MIL said when we were back last weekend lead me to believe that MIL routinely changes DN out of the clothes that he is sent in and in to the clothes that she has for him. And then she changes him back before he goes home. MIL's reason for this is that SIL sends him in such pristine clothes that she worries that he will ruin them. I have no idea if SIL knows about this or not. She may well do. I wouldn't dream of saying anything to her unless it came up in conversation. I guess this just adds to my list of what i consider "weird things" that my MIL does. Not weird. Just a bit controlling. ANd also perhaps my own experiences with my own children and MIL colour my opinion.

I know it's completely harmless. But isn't it just a bit, well, odd? Re-dressing your grandchild and then putting them back in their clothes ready for collection?

Kayano Sat 24-Sep-11 23:43:00

No, my mother in law does this too but for reverse reasons. Ex SIL doesn't sent them in clothes that fit/ are suitable. Ie flimsy summer dress in snow etc and generally dresses them terribly.

MIL buys school uniform otherwise theirs would not fit/ would look trampy.

She would get them more suitable things and dress them as fitting their weekend activity and let them keep te clothes as the kids liked them. It happened every week and MIL never saw those nice clothes again. So she keeps them at hers as 'weekend clothes'

They come in their god awful clothes, get changed on arrival and change back before they go home.

Not ideal but MIL does not have much but every kid deserves clothes that at least fit them and don't make them look bad/ dirty

OhhhImNeverGonnaDanceAgain Sat 24-Sep-11 23:43:19

Bit weird - maybe, but completely benign and not really worth dwelling on.

MsWetherwax Sat 24-Sep-11 23:45:24

My MIL did something very similar when DD was a few weeks old. She put her in terry towelling nappies instead of the disposable ones I'd supplied. I only found out she was doing it when DH knocked the nappy bucket in the corner of her garage. I think I found it more disconcerting because she had gone out of her way to hide the fact. I mean, why not just mention it?

CarnivalBizarre Sat 24-Sep-11 23:53:34

I don't think its weird at all, I think your MIL is really quite sensible having other clothes for the child to wear rather than sending back pristine clothes in less than pristine condition to your SIL. My MIL does the same thing as she has my DC gardening, baking and throwing pots on her potting wheel - I would be right pissed off if she sent my DC home with clothes covered in mud, flour or clay ..... but she also likes to take them out for nice meals so thats where their nice clothes come in

She also keeps a stash of wellies, waterproofs, buckets and spades, wetsuits etc just to save me having to pack all that stuff to send over with them as they are never sure what adventures they might have

I bloody love my MIL grin

sunnydelight Sat 24-Sep-11 23:57:28

I don't find it weird to be honest, it sounds like your MIL is anxious that your SIL will be cross if the pristine clothes get dirty, so she is being sensible by making sure that doesn't happen. Otherwise your SIL could be on MN complaining about the fact that her child comes home from her gran's with her beautiful clothes ruined grin

faverolles Sat 24-Sep-11 23:58:52

I used to look after a little girl and changed her the minute she came through the door. Her dm would hit the roof if she went home with the tiniest speck of dirt on her.
I would assume there were similar reasons behind your mil changing your dn.

lemmein Sun 25-Sep-11 00:01:18

I do this with my niece. Her mum sends her to my house in dirty clothes which half the time don't even belong to her and therefore hardly ever fit.

I have a drawer full of clothes I change her in to, partly because she often looks embarrassed when other kids are here and also because when we go on outings I don't want strangers to think I'm her mum and I'm neglecting her!

I used to let her take the clothes home but they never get washed and will join the never-ending laundry pile never to be seen again (the laundry pile is up the stairs, across the landing, in every room, etc). So now I change her back before she leaves and wash them for the next week.

I really do hate doing this - and worry I'm sending my niece a message that she's not good enough as she is. I love her to bits and hope I'm not creating future issues.....but honestly sometimes she looks like an extra from Annie, its just not fair on her at all.

With regards to your own MIL - her explanation sounds reasonable enough to me. I look after 2 other nieces and I often change their tops whilst they're eating, etc. If I had spare bottoms here I would probably change them before I let them loose in the garden. Sometimes my DB puts the youngest in jeans that really stop her from being able to run and climb about. If I had a spare, looser pair I would use them.

I don't think its a big deal tbh.

Daisy1986 Sun 25-Sep-11 00:02:37

My Mum used to do this with my niece and nephew when she had them but because they were sent in too small, smelly, grubby clothes. They took them home so they had nice things and then their Mother sold them at Car boots sad

It may just be that modern clothes are very expensive and she just feels more comftable if he ruins the clothes she puts him in if they do alot of painting/cooking/playing in the garden.

carpwidow Sun 25-Sep-11 00:05:38

Why are you so concerned? He she putting him in dresses and high-heeled shoes? You said you are "not involved", live 250 miles away and "something she said led you to believe..". You don't know what is going on. YABU

ddubsgirl Sun 25-Sep-11 00:07:46

my nextdoor neighbour does this,doesnt matter what her gd wears she will change it,the mum lives over the road so sees her in the other clothes,drove her mad at first now she just sends her in tatty clothes lol!

RIZZ0 Sun 25-Sep-11 20:12:40

If this is the same mother in law who also wears your clothes when you're out of the house, then makes up a flimsy excuse when caught wearing them, then yes, it's weird.


I'm back.

MrsVidic Sun 25-Sep-11 20:17:40

My mum does it but because she lives an hour away and often the weather is totally different. Plus her house is very different and dd1 runs around with the dogs outside getting grubby playing with grandma. My mum likes getting her clothes and I tell her she doesn't have to but she likes it.
They are both happy so it's fine by me

Rollergirl1 Sun 25-Sep-11 20:25:59

Heh heh, hello RIZZO...

And yes unfortunately, in this case, I think it is less about damage control and more about "being mummy again". MIL has done some pretty bonkers things in her time as a granny to my DD. Wearing my clothes whilst referring to herself as Mummy being just one of them.

I know it's harmless. And I'm sure that there is an element of saving his pristine clothes. But it is definitely more that she just wants to do it, control what he wears when he's with her, and feel more like his mummy than his granny.

ChippingIn Sun 25-Sep-11 20:29:25

She's barking grin

There are lots of good reasons to do it (most of them listed above) but seeing as she's generally a bit odd - I'm sticking with 'because she's barking' grin

MumblingRagDoll Sun 25-Sep-11 20:37:06

I know whre you're coming from....when I hd DD, my MIL got a room all kitted out with EVERYTHNG a baby would need including wardrobe of clothes, changing unit, bath, toy, cot and travel cot.

Bear in mind I had never met the woman as she lives on the other side of the when we turned up with newborn DD, I was met by this woman who looked like she wanted to steal my baby and make her, her own!

UKSky Sun 25-Sep-11 21:13:08

My MIL does this too, but it's because she doesn't like what we dress DD in. She only has sons and has always wanted a granddaughter.

She like to dress her in frilly, lacy, long dresses. Really practical for a 13 month old who is crawling at speed and pulling herself up onto everything..............and getting into everything as dirty as possible.

I think MIL would have preferred that we had a little girl who just likes to sit and be cuddled and look pretty, not a little hooligan.

I love dungarees as they are very practical and that's mostly what she wears. If it's hot she wears just a vest, or just a nappy or if we're in the garden nothing at all.

BoastingByStealth Sun 25-Sep-11 21:14:53

I've seen this done for the opposite reason. A friend of a friend has his son (aged 2) on a weekend, and as soon as he walked in the house he had to get changed out of the clothes his mother had sent him in to wear the designer stuff Daddy bought him. He was never allowed home in his designer stuff, was changed again before going back to his mum.

Now THAT'S weird.

ihatecbeebies Sun 25-Sep-11 21:33:22

My DS spends every other weekend at his grandparents and when I drop him off (in nice clothes) his dad and gran change him into 'their own clothes' for him which are mainly tracksuits and baseball caps or hand me down clothes from other cousins. Then they put his other clothes on him again for when I pick him up. I used to think it was strange and I got a bit annoyed but now I just don't bother thinking about it.

corlan Sun 25-Sep-11 21:40:14

It's definitely a control thing. My XP used to keep a whole wardrobe of clothes at his house for our daughter - although he probably only had her overnight 4 or 5 times a year.She never got to bring them home but, when she had outgrown them, he would give them to me in a bin bag! I would smile sweetly, say thanks and then have to lug them down to the charity shop!

Strangely enough, his mother kept a spare set of clothes for him at her house.When he visited, she would make him change into the 'spare' set and put the clothes he was wearing in the washing machine. She was still doing this when he was a grown man well in his late 20's.

ripstheirthroatoutliveupstairs Sun 25-Sep-11 21:42:41

Unless they are dressing him up in stilletoes and can can dresses and calling him Fifi I honestly can't see a problem.
Very sad for all the children who arrive dirty.

RIZZ0 Sun 25-Sep-11 22:04:50

If it was any other MIL, I'd find it plain rude and presumptuous. Most mothers of toddlers and children dress them knowing that they are erm, toddlers and children, and likely to get dirty. And even if they are somehow clueless to this, it's their own lookout, and their own laundry.

However, as it's yours, we can put it down to sheer bloody minded control-freakism. Best ignored or you'll get itchy. smile

mumblejumble Sun 25-Sep-11 22:51:54

My ex-mil used to keep the clothes I sent my ds in and send him back to me in tatty clothes, that didn't fit.
She was a bitch.

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