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To dislike the twaddle MIL spouts to baby DS?

(58 Posts)
MrsBloomingTroll Sat 01-Oct-11 04:10:21

DS is 6 weeks old, not my PFB but my DC2.

Whenever MIL holds him she talks to him non-stop, whether he's asleep or awake, saying things like:

"they don't look after you, do they?"
"they don't feed you, do they?" (she is anti-bf and convinced I am not producing enough milk for him, admittedly we are supplementing but for other reasons, we are very pro-bf)
"I don't blame you for complaining about <whatever>. I would if I were you."
...and the inevitable conclusion....
"you should come and live at Grandma's house. I'll look after you properly." by dumping you in boarding school aged 9 as she did with DH

She basically has verbal diarrhoea.

She also fusses endlessly about whether he's too hot/cold/sun in eyes/not enough sun/etc when he generally seems to be quite a content little chap and rarely squeaks. Unlike DC1

I don't think she did it as much with DC1, or maybe I didn't notice it so much. Or maybe I just didn't let MIL hold my PFB as often!

DH says I should just ignore her. But I am too hormonal and sleep-deprived for that.

DC1 is 3 yo and I'm also worried what she is hearing and noticing, although she seems to have inherited her Grandma's propensity for verbal diarrhoea and talks all the fecking time rather than listens!

I don't think I can bring myself to say anything to her, or is there a subtle way to get her to stop? (I'm aware of the accepted MN method...)

AIBU to dislike it? Even if it's meaningless twaddle I am a mother with the inevitable guilt so hearing someone say "they don't look after you" isn't very nice!

Oh, and I'm sure some of you have MILs who say worse, right?

hairylights Sat 01-Oct-11 04:42:29


kat2504 Sat 01-Oct-11 04:51:49

Yanbu. They are ridiculous comments, especially if she is saying them in front of you, it is extremely rude to suggest you are not looking after your baby properly and he should go and live with her. It is no good your DH saying ignore her. She is upsetting you and he should tell her to stop.

CalmaLlamaDown Sat 01-Oct-11 04:59:25

Oh don't feel guilty, sounds like it's her way of making a joke/making light conversation, altbough with a new baby and a three year old to look after I can understand why you might not be seeing the funny side....

If this happens at your house then excuse yourself citing exhaustion and go lie down for an hour or two

RickGhastley Sat 01-Oct-11 05:20:00

YANBU and your MIL is very rude.

DH needs to tell her that saying you don't look after/ feed your child is hurtful and untrue and that her comments need to stop.

yellowraincoat Sat 01-Oct-11 05:23:04

Do the same back?

'oh granny's a mad old bat you wouldn't want to live with her'
'you're so lucky to have normal parents'
'mmm lovely milk much nicer than the weird food granny would give you'

Mostly joking. Best solution would be to say she's rude. To her face. Not that easy though.

beararse Sat 01-Oct-11 05:36:30

Sympathy. DH's family have a thing where they affectionately call babies "bag of rubbish"! Meanwhile I grit my teeth. But it really isn't meant as anything other than a jokey term of endearment so I'd never say anything. Only you know whether your MIL is stirring or not. If she is you could always take the "you tell her or I will, less pleasantly" route with your DH?

mancinleics Sat 01-Oct-11 07:31:37

YANBU but bear in mind you will be a little more sensitive at the moment due to decreasing hormones and lack of sleep!

My MIL said similar things in the early days (5MO DD) and really upset me when she said that when we stayed at her house that 'her little princess would sleep with her' to which my retort was 'are you going to start lactating then?' other things like 'I've bought you pink because I know your mummy won't and 'here's some toys because your parents won't buy you anything' have been met with the acid tongue of a sleep deprived mummy. Now MIL is petrified of me grin DH knows the score and finds it hilarious. We're going to blame it on the hormones if she ever says she's upset. However I will caution that I do have a fairly good relationship with MIL.

Bearcrumble Sat 01-Oct-11 07:39:23

What a rude, silly woman. You need to tell her (calmly) that comments like that are wildly inappropriate, undermining and must stop.

ShoutyHamster Sat 01-Oct-11 07:48:07

Next time she's due to come around, call beforehand and be really apologetic but suggest that you put the visit off 'for a day or so'.

The reason? Your 3 year old had a bad dream and was crying about the baby not being looked after properly and being sent away to live with Grandma and not being allowed to have any lovely milk any more.

'I know that all that stuff you say is only a joke, but it's horrible for DD to hear that and it's beginning to upset her too (note the 'too' slipped in there smile ) - so I'm really sorry but after last night we think it would be better if you stayed away, just for a few days while things settle - don't want DD to have an issue with you.'

She'll be petrified to so much as comment in future. grin

NB: You TELL your DH that this is your solution, and you insist he backs you up - say calmly that it isn't something you can 'ignore', you have the right to fucking HATE someone speaking about you like that, even in 'jest', and he gets the choice of a nice tactful solution like this or an eventual blow-up and a strip torn off MIL, by you, and bed relations thereafter.

ShoutyHamster Sat 01-Oct-11 07:49:28

BAD relations. Certainly not bed relations - except the type where you take to your bed with DS, lock the door and don't let her see him until he's 4!

MULLYPEEP Sat 01-Oct-11 07:55:11

My MIL used to say to my girls 'are they bad to you?' 'is that bad mummy not listening to you' etc. She was joking confused I think, but I thought she was nuts. Am resolved if ever have other baby will tell her what a nice line in baby chat she has and smile sarcastically.

startwig1982 Sat 01-Oct-11 07:58:30

It is rude for her to do it all the time. I'm imagining that she's just joking as my DH and mil say that DS is going to waste away when I'm doing something apart from feeding. They're only being silly!! grin

fedupofnamechanging Sat 01-Oct-11 08:04:55

I honestly don't think she means anything by this. Lots of people talk absolute rubbish to small children. Babies listen to tone of voice rather than the words themselves.

I would just say back, "take no notice of grandma, she is going senile" in an equally light, sing-song voice and dismiss what she is saying. If she is hurt by the senile comments, then she might consider how her words affect you.

I think this is something a lot of GP's do, for some weird reason that I don't understand.

Birdsgottafly Sat 01-Oct-11 08:12:33

I really don't understand why we (women) allow this, at what can be the most emotionally vulnerable time in our lives. I think that it is not suprising that many women feel a lowered self esteem after having a baby, when this goes on around them.

You wouldn't say this to another adult, putting their skills down, so you shouldn't be doing it to a mum that has just given birth with a toddler listening.

I think this sort of behaviour continues because it isn't challenged and stopped. Sarcasm and passive aggressiveness is really damaging to a persons and developing childs self esteem.

BlingLoving Sat 01-Oct-11 08:18:09

I am with birds. This makes no sense. How are comments like this considered random chatting? Random chatting is endless commentary on the weather or howcute baby is or perhaps questions you won't get answers to : "is baby hungry, does he want a jumper, are you the sweetest little thing in the world?" etc. Not comments on OP's parenting disguised as harmless chatter.

geraldinetheluckygoat Sat 01-Oct-11 08:21:36

why don't you just say you find it upsetting and ask her to stop saying it?

TBH my mil used to drive me mad when ds1 was tiny, but looking back, I was being a bit oversensitive and she was just massively overexcited. I definitely know she didn't mean to be hurtful by her behavour, but it really was hurtful at the time. I wish I'd just said something looking back because I spent a lot of time brooding on it, and actually it was pretty pointless as a)she didnt even realise she was doing it and b)she turned out to be a really brilliant grandma once we all calmed down.

Seriously, just talk to her. Making similar comments back is just going to come accross as unhinged and passive aggressive. Just say, "Oh, stop it! I hope you dont REALLY think that, its awful!!" or something...

pigletmania Sat 01-Oct-11 08:23:43

YANBU at all, there is one thing to talk to the baby in baby language for that I would have said that YABU, but to sprout toxic nonsense to your dc is absolutely shock. my mum had a habit of that a bit, but not on the scale you are describing. She does not do it anymore after I had a go at her, I am sure though that she thinks she can do a better job than me grin

bagelmonkey Sat 01-Oct-11 08:26:02

My MIL does exactly the same! If it was my own mother I could give her a cheerful fuck off, but it's v different with MIL.
She gives a running commentary of mummy/daddy is making you cry (whilst MIL holding her!), we're feeding DD boring food, too much, too little, not long enough BF (she never BF herself) etc etc
I like karmabeliever's suggestion about saying MIL is senile. I'll try that one next time.

LisasCat Sat 01-Oct-11 08:27:15

Another one here agreeing that you should do exactly the same to the baby in her earshot.

"Don't you look all happy being with your mummy and daddy and not packed off to boarding school."
"Look at you, growing all big and strong on mummy's milk, rather than whatever rubbish granny would give you."

I have cut my mother down to size on several occasions when she has said something I deem inappropriate to DD1, who is now 4. When I was pregnant and DD1 was acting up and being suitably disciplined, my mother thought it sensible to tell her not to worry about it, I was just tired from being pregnant. So I told DD1 in no uncertain terms, in front of my mother, that it was nothing to do with me being pregnant, she had done the wrong thing and needed to know there were consequences. And then told my mother that I was trying very hard not to let DD1 feel like the baby was in any way to blame for anything she got into trouble for, and would appreciate it if she took the same line. Suffice to say she looked suitably chastised.

(See!!! This is not just a MIL bashing thread. The rules count for our own mothers too.)

StuntCubble Sat 01-Oct-11 08:28:14

Just ask her if she thinks she will find iit easy talking and eating with no fucking teeth, that should do it grin

allhailtheaubergine Sat 01-Oct-11 08:28:57

People often used to tell my baby son they were going to "take him away to live with them" and things like that. My 3yo daughter found this hugely upsetting. I found the best way was to react by turning to dd and saying calmly and seriously and "no darling, of course Granny isn't going to take the baby away. Mummy would never allow that. And of course our baby is happy living here with us because he loves us and we love him" etc - it made people actually think about how ridiculous the things they were saying sounded.

eaglewings Sat 01-Oct-11 08:33:59

Don't know how you stand this

I admit to jokingly saying to the dogs

" oh has xxx not fed you" but that's because they have big eyes that tell me they are hungry and they are dogs!!

Agree with the back chat you could do " grandma doesn't have nice mummy milk at her house, you would hate it there" etc

bagelmonkey Sat 01-Oct-11 08:34:58

geraldinetheluckygoat you are very wise. I will follow your advice first. Then tell DD grandma is senile.

TheSecondComing Sat 01-Oct-11 08:35:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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