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Well am I ? Mil related

(43 Posts)
NotHerRealname Wed 06-Feb-13 13:20:45

As a bit of background information I get on well with my Mil on the whole. The kids love her and she spoils them to bits when she sees them.

However, my husband and I went out for a (rare) evening to the cinema at the weekend. She came over to babysit. She was late coming over as usual and then we had to rush out feeling very stressed. Not exactly the relaxing evening we had hoped for.

When we got back at half past 10, she was still up with my 4 year Ds, who normally goes to bed at 7. I sort of just joked about him still being up, I didn't make a fuss as I know that she was doing us a favour. But then she said could she just read him a story before putting him to bed, and I didn't have the heart to refuse her. He didn't go to bed until nearly 11! I should have put my foot down but she always makes me feel bad that she doesn't see her grandchildren much.

I just feel that there is no way it is in a child's best interests to stay up that late. He was an absolute nightmare the next day as he was so tired. We had to rearrange out plans for a day out as he was too tired to go anywhere.
Also, to add insult to injury, he had a wee accident and she didn't tell us, just left the pissy clothes on the bathroom sink. FFS.

She is having my Ds for a couple of days in the half term and I am just dreading it. I just know she will keep him up late both nights and then it will ruin the days I have with him.

Fightlikeagirl Wed 06-Feb-13 20:38:29

With you on the guilt thing notherrealname. I'm a childminder and feel so guilty that I can't give my children my full attention when working that I too feel I have to make it up to them when not working.

NotHerRealname Wed 06-Feb-13 20:32:32

I guess the general concensus is pretty much suck it up then! I do like the idea of the daytime babysitting though. The only trouble is I would feel like such a cow going out during the day and not taking the kids. Its hard when you work and feel like you have to spend every available minute with them to make up for it.

thegreylady Wed 06-Feb-13 20:20:23

Now when I babysit...bedtime/bathtime/ story time are right on time with everyone snuggled down by 7pm including grandma who is snuggled down with a mug of tea and a bar of chocolate and a good book grin

ceebie Wed 06-Feb-13 20:14:45

If she's always late, then why don't you ask her to come an hour before you really need her to... if you need to leave at 7, tell her you need her there by 6 at the latest?

HumphreyCobbler Wed 06-Feb-13 20:06:26

Well I also said I wouldn't keep a child of four up till ten, especially if they were used to an early bedtime. I wouldn't expect the responsible adult I had left looking after them to do this either.

Fightlikeagirl Wed 06-Feb-13 20:03:07

Nicolaeus, what a lovely memory you have to cherish

ihear do you have a spare one of those idiot tshirts for me please?!!

usualsuspect Wed 06-Feb-13 20:01:01

lol at Hissy,She is joking,right?

WilsonFrickett Wed 06-Feb-13 19:38:54

How did you choose your NN hissy wink

MrsOakenshield Wed 06-Feb-13 19:32:50

I must say I never knew I was meant to be the matriarch of my family hmm.

Bowlersarm Wed 06-Feb-13 19:29:41

The only thing I can say, OP, is that my MIL was a bit like this with my DS1 which really annoyed me at the time (by keeping him up, feeding him things I didn't want him to eat etc) and I got really annoyed. Then she died unexpectedly and DS2 and DS3 weren't able to enjoy having her around and I really regretted sweating the small stuff - which I think this is - when she was so good with him overall. I just wanted her back so they could know her. So YABU.

ihearsounds Wed 06-Feb-13 19:27:07

Anyone that keeps a 4yo up, in the child's own house until 10 or 11PM is an idiot.
I wear my idiot t-shirt with pride.

Hissy Wed 06-Feb-13 19:17:11

Anyone that keeps a 4yo up, in the child's own house until 10 or 11PM is an idiot.

YANBU OP. Change the night time plans, the halfterm ones too. use this latest occasion as a lever to alter the rules. She can come and see them daytime, but that you'll find other people to babysit at night.

It's not on to tell the OP to suck it up, the MIL is supposed to be caring for her GC, making them stay up till 11PM is not on. And I say keeping them up, and making them stay up because if left alone on a sofa. That child would almost certainly have nodded off themself! MIL could have played with and put the DC to bed a bit later than usual, but she didn't even attempt to put a 4yo to bed, and that is ridiculous.

How are you ever meant to be the matriarch in your family if you can't set the rules/guidelines to appropriately provide for your DS. Say nowt for now, but reorganise the haf term quietly, and don't get her to sit at night times again.

If she asks, tell her the truth, calmly and quietly. Her behaviour is indefensible.

I don't know how you kept quietish at the time, I'd have flipped!

catsrus Wed 06-Feb-13 18:29:14

we left my dad babysitting once, came back to find the furniture upturned and children and dogs playing steeplechase. "they've had a lovely time" he said.

He's long dead but the memory isn't. Sorry YABU, let them make memories of fun and slightly 'naughty' times with your mum.

MrsOakenshield Wed 06-Feb-13 18:27:06

if you know she's always late then just tell her you need her over half an hour before you really do - ridiculous I know, but at least she get there when you wanted! She sounds a lovely grandma, and really, the odd late night isn't the end of the world.

BrawToken Wed 06-Feb-13 18:23:32


HumphreyCobbler Wed 06-Feb-13 18:23:11

the op says that MIL can see them when she wants, she does not restrict their time.

I think keeping a four year old up till 10.30 is a ridiculous thing to do and wouldn't ask her to babysit again. It would not be worth the fall out the next day.

Who keeps a toddler up till this time? I don't know anyone who would do this.

crunchbag Wed 06-Feb-13 18:19:08


She wanted to actually spent time with the gc rather than watching tele whilst they were asleep.

The clothes could have been an oversight, have you never left something for later and forgot about it?

If you know she always arrives late then just ask her to come an hour later, that way you won't stress.

BerthaTheBogCleaner Wed 06-Feb-13 18:02:31

1) Pay a babysitter

2) Let MIL see her grandchildren during the day (assuming that "she doesn't see her gcs much" means she only sees them once every couple of months - if she already sees them weekly, tell her to stop moaning and be grateful she sees them as much as she does)

3) Tell her you've changed your plans for half-term, and would she like to come visit for a day when you are there / go out with you and the gcs for a day instead

If she can't look after them she doesn't get to look after them, simple.

MrsSlocombesPussy Wed 06-Feb-13 17:55:02

I also have treasured memories of my gran babysitting me and my cousin. We were allowed to eat what we want, and stay up to watch Hammer House of Horror films!

ihearsounds Wed 06-Feb-13 17:50:18

Its one night. Nothing will happen to your ds from staying up late. Yes he might be a bit tired/cranky the next day, but again no big deal.
But then I am not extremly anal about bed times. Sometimes shit happens anyway and children stay up late.

claudedebussy Wed 06-Feb-13 17:40:51

i have this. and now i pay someone to babysit if it's during the week. mil has twigged too, because she joked that she couldn't get them to bed on time. but when they've got school the next day i'm not prepared to send them tired. so they stay up with her on the weekend to their heart's content and everyone's happy.

if i were you, i'd move the time forward by 30 mins / 1 hour from the time you actually need her. that way she'll get to be late and you'll get to leave early smile

bakingaddict Wed 06-Feb-13 17:36:45

It's difficult for GP's to insist on DC's going to bed at their normal times and I think it's slightly unrealistic for parents to expect this. Kids know it's not the usual night-time routine and obviously play to this fact.

No matter how strict GP's were when they were parents, they don't want to be the big bad ogre of a grandparent making them go to bed at 7pm. They want to be watching DVD's and eating treats till the GC crash out. When me and DH go for dinner and a film we get back around midnight to find DS 5 and DD 2 asleep on the sofa or floor. MIL reports that everyone has had a wonderful time and they didn't go to sleep till 10pm. Sure they may be overtired and cranky the next day but they've had their bonding time with GP's and us a well deserved night out

usualsuspect Wed 06-Feb-13 17:29:39

It's one night,it doesn't matter.

happyhorse Wed 06-Feb-13 17:27:10

My MIL does this too. Could come at any time, is more than welcome to, but always turns up at DS's bedtime so I feel that I have to let him stay up, then if she's staying to babysit I know he'll be up for ages and moody and miserable next day. I begrudgingly put up with it as I value the babysitting and DS always has a good time with her. I try to plan it for times when he can have a quiet next day and early to bed the next night.

Nicolaeus Wed 06-Feb-13 17:26:30

When I was 4 my parents would put me to bed and then go out. I waited until they left and told my grandad I couldnt sleep grin so he would give me a chunk of cheese and we'd watch ballet together on the TV.

These are memories that I cherish as he died a few months later. My mum didnt find out until 20 years later!

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