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to ask what mil will be doing with my child?

(99 Posts)
roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 03:07:09

My child (17 months) has never been away from me for more than a couple of hours.

Im expecting my 2nd so mil will be having my child for 1 whole day a week. The thought makes me anxious and worried - mainly because her house is not child proofed in any way and is full of dangerous stuff - glass candle holders, an open fire with no guard, loads of spikey things, steep stairs with sheer drop to one side as no handrail or banister.

I am feeling really anxious.

I know mil will look after him to the best of her ability but i am worried about the safety issues within her house. I dont know how to address this tactfully/without causing offence but i feel id be doing my son a disservice by not saying anything and getting some reassurance - id never forgive myself if anything happened.

My mil hasnt had a huge amount to to with ds before now and my oh in particular is very keen for this to happen. I know it will be a help when our 2nd arrives but i cant get over my anxieties over her house. She cant have him at ours as that will negate the point - to give me chance to get stuff done and give me time alone with pur 2nd when they arrive.

How can i approach this?

Im worried about her going to the loo or making a drink (she drinks for england so constantly has a hot coffee on the go), leaving lo and something bad happening. There are no stairgates and no playpen to put him in whilst doing these things.

Is it reasonable for me to say im concerned and ask what she will be doing to keep him safe? We dont get on well and my oh thinks im being silly (he isnt safety aware AT ALL but i know i am probably too far the other way)...

Unacceptable Mon 02-Jan-17 03:26:34

Could I ask why Mil will be having your little one?
If it's causing you this much anxiety just don't do it.
Having two little ones is not impossible

Unacceptable Mon 02-Jan-17 03:27:58

Was this oh's idea or mil's or yours?

Toffeewhirl Mon 02-Jan-17 03:37:57

I would rethink this if I was as concerned as you, to be honest. Listen to your instincts.

steff13 Mon 02-Jan-17 03:38:33

You MIL's house doesn't sound safe for anyone, what with the open flames, spiky things, and steep stairs with no railings. I'm imagining Dracula's castle.

I agree with Unacceptable; you don't have to let her take him, just keep him home. I had a two year old and a newborn, and cared for my mother who was dying of cancer all at the same time. It's not impossible. Or, pay for childcare with a provider one day a week if you need a break.

purplefizz26 Mon 02-Jan-17 03:44:08

Having 2 isn't impossible, if it's bothering you that much don't send her there.
Or buy all the safety things you think she needs and ask her to get them fitted.

roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 03:46:02

Hi,
It was oh's idea because mil doesnt see our lb very much at all, but by contrast she has her other gc a couple of days a week. It was upsetting my oh that his mum has no relationship with our lo, and with me being pregnant and due in next few months oh thinks it will be good for me too.

I dont think she is a negligent person and i think it will be good for our lb to spend more time with his nan but i just dont know whether im being ott about the house issues. They will be going to a baby group part of the day but there will still be 6 hours that he could be at her house.

She does have a travel cot for his nap so i guess he could be put in there for when she needs loo/getting drinks/lunch etc.

In her mind she is doing me a favour bt the reality is that i dont need her help. My lb has been with me every day since birth and i have had zero support aside from my oh.

I accept that with lo#2 on the way it is a good idea for ds1 to spend time with his nan as i wont have as much time when lo2 arrives. My oh also pointed out that i was in hospital with ds1 for nearly a week after the birth so if anything happened this time its a good idea for ds to have a bond with his nan incase he needs to stop there whilst my oh supports me in labour/after the birth.

All in all im not happy about it but i know oh has a point and that it will be good for ds to have a relationship with his nan and do stuff with her. My oh and i have felt quite resentful of the attention she gives her other gc as she seems to have 'forgotten' about our son and my oh has always had a bee in his bonnet about my mil favouring his sibling and their child (its not in his head, its blatant).

So, it came about when my oh had a go at her for never seeing our lb and they agreed she would have him 1 day a week.

How do i tackle the safety anxieties i have about her house?

roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 03:47:10

- she has her other gc at oh's siblings house, not at her own.

SmallBee Mon 02-Jan-17 03:47:25

What's stopping you just asking her this?
if you're looking for a,way to broach the conversation turn maybe you could say to your MIL
' oh my DC is still at that age when they're into everything and trying to climb up the stairs. have you got baby proofing stuff to fit your house out with or shall we buy you some? '
her response should tell you a lot.

its also a big leap for her to go from no time with your DC to a full day, why not suggest you start off with a few trial mornings or afternoons first, to settle DC into it and put your mind at rest?
is this her first grandchild or at least the first one she'll have looked after alone?

SmallBee Mon 02-Jan-17 03:47:28

What's stopping you just asking her this?
if you're looking for a,way to broach the conversation turn maybe you could say to your MIL
' oh my DC is still at that age when they're into everything and trying to climb up the stairs. have you got baby proofing stuff to fit your house out with or shall we buy you some? '
her response should tell you a lot.

its also a big leap for her to go from no time with your DC to a full day, why not suggest you start off with a few trial mornings or afternoons first, to settle DC into it and put your mind at rest?
is this her first grandchild or at least the first one she'll have looked after alone?

user1479745061 Mon 02-Jan-17 03:47:58

You're not being unreasonable at all. You're quite rightly concerned about risks to your child. Your MIL's house sounds full of very predictable accidents just waiting to happen. I wouldn't have let my son spend any time without me in a house like that. The stairs on their own, never mind all the rest, make me shudder.

SmallBee Mon 02-Jan-17 03:50:35

sorry cross posted, I see she watches her other gc. so you know she's able to do that well and safely, albeit at someone else's house.

hesterton Mon 02-Jan-17 03:51:01

I thought stairs with no side guard of some sort were illegal in terms of planning. That would worry me. And the unguarded fire. I think you need to say something really.

steff13 Mon 02-Jan-17 03:51:03

Have the other grandchildren ever been injured while they were with her?

hesterton Mon 02-Jan-17 03:52:19

OP said they were at their own house, not hers steff.

roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 03:52:33

User147...exactly. i can see all these accidents waiting to happen so i cant do/say nothing! : / x x

roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 03:53:27

Yes, the other gc has always been looked after in their own home not hers.

roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 03:56:33

Smallbee...yes, it is a lot for her to go from no time to a full day (and its a long time for my lo to be away from me too, no doubt)

I have a difficult relationship with mil. We dont get on. I find it hard to talk to her. My oh will think im being obstructive because he knows im not keen on her or the idea of her having our ds....

Dont know how to deal with this!

DistanceCall Mon 02-Jan-17 04:00:02

Ask your partner to child-proof his mother's house. If he can't be bothered, then you have a perfectly valid reason not to let your child go there. Just calmly list all the dangerous things in the house, and tell your partner that you won't be endangering any child of yours.

roundaboutthehouses Mon 02-Jan-17 04:08:02

My oh doesnt 'get' the dangers. He thinks im ott.

I am an anxious person but i know i have a point here.

There is a wine rack full of bottles on the floor in the open lounge/diner plus a whole host of other things.

We cant put a stairgate in at the bottom of the stairs as its 100% open to one side (nothing to attatch it to). She is very houseproud so may resist one going in at the top on the landing for aesthetics.

Tbh, she needs to remove the spikey and glass stuff (inc the wine rack), put a fire guard on and have stairgates at top of stairs and in the doorway from lounge into hall where the open stairs are.

How do you go about asking a person to change their home when they think they are doing you a favour by having your child?

Caterina99 Mon 02-Jan-17 04:41:50

YANBU It does sound like it has dangers, but surely your mil has raised her own kids and hosted grandchildren at her house (even if it's not every week, I assume they've set foot in the house). Just ask her or get DH to ask her what her baby proofing plans are?

cant she just baby proof one room and keep him in there? Get a highchair so he's contained for meals and prep and keep doors shut. You can get stair gates and fire guards etc that are just temporary. Buy her some of them yourself.

I think your lo never being away from you and your problems with mil are fueling anxiety, she has raised children and doesn't want Ds to come to harm. Perhaps he should do a trial of a few hours before moving to a full day though? Give both of them a chance to get used to it.

FourKidsNotCrazyYet Mon 02-Jan-17 04:55:13

You can get a playpen that opens up to a barrier with a gate in it. Ask her what she intends to do because, as it stands it isn't childproof yet. Offer to buy these things or contribute towards it. It's non negotiable.

HappyAsASandboy Mon 02-Jan-17 07:29:29

I obviously haven't seen your MiL's house, but I think a non-childproof house can be perfectly safe if the style of care-giving matches it.

My step-mother's style is to permanently be with a toddler. They are literally joined at the hand. If MiL needs to leave the room then the toddler goes too and would go to the loo with her or go to help her make a drink. These activities aren't things you have to leave a baby/toddler to do.

I think it is easy to assume that another care giver will care in the same way we do. But your MiL will be doing this one day per week; she may have endless tolerance for sitting on the floor with a toddler and having a shadow all day, whereas I would be trying to hoover/wash up/cool as quickly as possible and would leave my toddler to go fetch something rather than dawdle around together.

I think the best way to see what is likely to happen is to spend time with your MiL and toddler in her house. If you can be there but be allowed to go for a bath, pop out for a walk etc then you'd soon see how your MiL intends to care for your toddler and so could make up your own mind whether you want toddler then for a whole day without you.

justanotherusername0 Mon 02-Jan-17 07:32:52

My MILs home isn't baby proofed . When we went to visit I reminded her of a few things that could have been a problem last time (ornaments etc) had DC been walking, as she now walks. MIL was fine with it and said I could just move anything I needed.
MILs have all had kids themselves I really don't think it's a massive deal to ask if you could have a chat about baby proofing. Maybe she doesn't remember how into everything little kids are as it's been a while! Just say it's been a while and be nice about it , maybe offer to help her so it's done to a way that will make you happy.
If you're happy for her to look after your kids in general then I'm sure you'll appreciate she is excited about it and probably won't mind chatting about it with you! Be brave !

insancerre Mon 02-Jan-17 07:38:17

I don't understand the need for the arrangement at all
What is it that you want to do that you can do with your child there?
I would be worried that the older child would feel a sense of rejection at being sent to grans house and develop resentment to the new baby
I would be looking at involving the older child in caring for the baby as much as possible.
Is there any chance MIL can come to yours and take the baby out for a walk so you can spend some quality time with your eldest instead?

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