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Aibu to be really harsh with my mum about smoking even though it's her house.

(155 Posts)
Toby123321 Mon 27-Mar-17 14:44:18

I have a 5 month old boy who has chest infections almost every 3 weeks. He has been admitted to hospital twice now for servere infections. The doctor at the hospital asked who smokes DH and i live with my mum. She's the only person who smokes she smokes outside never in the house however the Dr said that this is still affecting my son and basically said he won't improve untill she stops or he grows out of it.
I honestly thought seeing how poorly he was last time would shock her into trying to give up but she won't.
She does so much for us and loves our son her only grand child so much but obviously not enough to stop smoking.
I'd like your advice on what I can do or say to help her to quit. Short of moving out (which we cant afford to do) I'm at a loss as to what to do and my son is my priority!

tiktok Mon 27-Mar-17 14:46:21

What does she say when you tell her what the doctor says? Does she not believe the doctor?

Dontactlikeyouknowme Mon 27-Mar-17 14:46:24

You need to try and find a way to move out.

Happyandhungry Mon 27-Mar-17 14:47:27

Does she smoke fully outside? With doors etc shut? Does she wear a specific "smokers jacket" that she wears only to go outside and smoke in?

Compromise and ask her to do the above if she doesn't already and this should stop her wafting smoke into the house or her clothes passing stuff over to your child. YABU expecting her to just stop smoking even though i do agree with you that it would be better for her and all of you!

Toby123321 Mon 27-Mar-17 14:48:19

She says that there are people who smoke around babies and she wouldn't dream of it so how come noone smokes inside our house and our child is so poorly yet other children are fine sad

Trifleorbust Mon 27-Mar-17 14:48:38

As much as I sympathise, you cannot be 'harsh' with her about smoking outside her own house, in which she allows you and your son to live. Sorry.

TwentyCups Mon 27-Mar-17 14:49:54

I really think you will have to try to move out. I'm a recent ex smoker (one month in feeling great!) so I understand exactly how hard it is to quit and unfortunately the addict has to want to for it to be successful. She may not see why fooling outside is a problem, but of course it is because of all the lingering smoke on her clothes etc.

Ultimately you can't make her stop, and whilst you live in her house you don't have any leverage. If she was living with you in your house you would.

SaucyJack Mon 27-Mar-17 14:50:26

You need to move out.

It isn't easy, but that's all there is to it I'm afraid.

Toby123321 Mon 27-Mar-17 14:50:40

Yes door closed etc but no jacket I said she needs to keep something near the door she just doest see the harm she's doing I don't think!

Hogterm Mon 27-Mar-17 14:51:37

I think it's very difficult. It's her house and she is an adult so can choose what she does. My mum also smokes and I hate it but I can't make her stop. I understand from her how hard it is to quit. Your mum goes outside already so is making allowances for your son and you say she loves him. You have told her what the doctor said.

In this situation, I think the onus is now on you. If it's making your son ill then you need to find somewhere healthy for him to live. You need to move.

TwentyCups Mon 27-Mar-17 14:52:28

As a compromise I agree with the doors closed, smoking jacket and also to wash hands and brush teeth after to minimise harm. But that is quite a lot to ask of someone in their own home.

PortiaCastis Mon 27-Mar-17 14:53:13

Did she smoke when you were a child?

HecateAntaia Mon 27-Mar-17 14:53:41

If the fact that your son is repeatedly ill and the dr says it is due to passive smoking has not made her quit then I'm really not sure what it is you think is going to!

Bottom line is it is her home you are in and if she doesn't want to quit you cannot physically make her.

A common response to such things is to talk about how she ought to want to and how terrible it is that she doesn't do it... but really you have leave aside all the 'she should want to' stuff because 'should' is not enforceable and you have to deal with the situation as it is not as it ought to be.

She does not want to stop.

she knows that the dr says it is affecting the child and it is still her choice to not stop.

If you think you can find some magic words that will change things you are fooling yourself.

So what can you actually do? Forget about what she should do. you are not in control of that. What can you do.

Well, you can accept it and just deal with it, including the fact your son is ill

Or you can leave. Even if this means renting a scummy bedsit or 1 bed in a crap area.

Or you can see if a non smoking family member will take pity on you and take you in.

As you say, your son is your priority. So given that you cannot control her choices, you are left only with your own.

Stay in a house with a smoker and continue to have an ill child

Or leave.

It is what it is. you are not in charge of her choice to smoke. What she ought to do is meaningless. You have to go on what she is doing.

Toby123321 Mon 27-Mar-17 14:54:47

The Dr himself came to speak to her when she visited and she was all "yes I agree" with him but has done nothing since. I know it's her house but she loves us here too I honestly thought the Dr and seeing him so poorly would help her quit sad

Littleballerina Mon 27-Mar-17 14:55:43

We lived in a damp house that made my youngest poorly. I loved that house but dc came first and we moved.

Other children maybe don't get poorly but they aren't your child/ her grandchild.

Put your dc first. Find somewhere else to live.

tiktok Mon 27-Mar-17 14:56:30

So she doesn't believe the doctor, then.

Yes, it sounds like you will have to move.

One last chance: can you ask your Hv to speak with her? The research is pretty clear. Babies who live with smokers are at risk - a tiny baby with a chest infection is in pain, has difficulty breathing, and may have lasting health problems. Your Hv needs to spell it out.

Toby123321 Mon 27-Mar-17 14:57:12

Yes Portia she's always smoked

PortiaCastis Mon 27-Mar-17 14:58:40

Well you're ok but I would move if I was you

notanothernamechangebabes Mon 27-Mar-17 14:59:52

My mum smokes. My whole family do. DP and I quit when I found out I was pregnant and binned all our soft furnishings that had been exposed to smoke. And all our bedding/ mattresses and started with fresh ones. I don't take him to homes where people smoke inside.

We stay with my mum once every 6 weeks or so- she only smokes outside anyway - but whenever she's going to be with the baby at my house or hers - she smokes outside, in a specific jacket, and washes her hands and face when she comes back inside.

and the rules are the same for any smoker who wants to touch my baby. Not if you've smoked in those clothes, and not until you've washed your hands. I don't feel even a bit bad about it- whether we're at my house, their house or our and about. My baby's health is 100000x more important than hurt feelings.

Trifleorbust Mon 27-Mar-17 15:00:06

I do think it's very sad, though, that she won't do this for her grandson flowers She obviously loves him or she wouldn't let you live in her home.

Could you make some sort of compromise with her about how often she smokes/how many a day? Could you take him out so he was in the house a lot less?

statetrooperstacey Mon 27-Mar-17 15:01:01

Get her a dressing gown purely for smoking in, ask her to wear it over her clothes, keep the door shut and to go to the bottom of the garden,
Maybe also an umbrella !
Also yes wash hands and brush teeth. Orbuy her a vape?
Aak her to go to doctors with you next time and get the doctor to explain to her. She probably struggles to see how it affects him, and if she is already a considerate smoker I can see why. Good luck it's a tricky situation

notanothernamechangebabes Mon 27-Mar-17 15:01:09

Oh sorry - so no I don't think you're being unreasonable- or if you are, I am too grin

Toby123321 Mon 27-Mar-17 15:03:58

Trifle she does love him so much she's amazing with him and I dont know where I would be without her. I'm gutted. Such a crap situation.

ForTheSakeOfFuck Mon 27-Mar-17 15:05:41

I think Hecate has nailed it, OP. If her addiction outweighs her love for her grandchild then literally no words you can utter are going to have any effect in those weighing scales. Make plans, sell things, start packing. If she asks why, explain. If that's not good enough, nothing else will be.

statetrooperstacey Mon 27-Mar-17 15:06:04

Oh dear the doctor has already spoken to her. I think Hecate has some good advice.

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