MIL wants to spend alone time with DD(370 Posts)
My DD is about to turn 6 months old. We live very near our in-laws and see them at least once a week. My MIL text me today saying she is disappointed that she hasn't spent any time alone with her granddaughter and could we set something up next week. AIBU to say no to this?
Only you can say - are you still breast feeding and don't want to express? Is there some reason why she can't spend time with MIL?
Of course you can say no.
But on the other hand, unless you have reason to believe she might mistreat her there is no reason why you can't leave a six month old with someone else for a couple of hours, there is nothing wrong with it.
Do as you want, it's your choice.
What does she have in mind- a walk round the park with the pram, or an overnight visit?
I was leaving ebf dd with mil for weekends from 3 mos. (I had to fly for work so I took dd and dropped her at grandma’s until I got back if she wasn’t able to get time off). I just took bottled bm with me and expressed and chucked to keep my supply up.
Dd is in her third year at uni and has a great relationship with both me and her grandma, so no one was harmed in the building of this relationship.
@spacepyramid I am breastfeeding. I just don't think I'm ready to leave DD for any considerable amount of time. I have left her with my DH for 15 minutes or so whilst I have taken the dog for a walk, for instance but I dont really want to be away from her tbh. I'm a little annoyed that she framed the question saying she is disappointed - like I have done something wrong by not giving her some alone time already.
Oh hmm that’s when I had one. When I had three we had moved about an hour away and mil was driving up to look after the kids one day a week. The youngest has cerebral palsy and required quite a bit of care.
Because we have lived in different countries to grandparents we have maximized the opportunity for their relationship, whether living close or far away.
Now they are all teens and we are overseas again, a few years ago we sent them back to uk for a month in the summer to stay. We’ve always worked really hard to create a bond with extended family. It’s something we felt was important.
@isabellerossignol she wouldn't mistreat her and I guess if it came up naturally (i.e. I needed someone to look after DD for me whilst I gad a hair cut or something) then I wouldn't think much of it. It's just that it feels like she's saying I should make time for her and DD to be alone together which I don't think really needs to happen.
If your not comfortable with it then just say no , you'll probably feel different as she gets bigger
I don't think you are being unreasonable - she's your daughter - but I don't think it'd do any harm for you to arrange for her to do a bit of childcare, maybe she could have DD when you go for a dental checkup or hair cut?
I don't think her saying she is disappointed is a problem, she's probably just a doting grandparent but you know her best.
Bf is trickier. Dd1 was bf but would take expressed milk in a bottle without blinking. She didn’t care. Ds1 had rsv at ten weeks and developed a plastic phobia from the nebuliser, so it took until he was ten months before he would allow plastic near his face. I still left him with babysitters though. Just for a couple of hours at a time and had to be within twenty minutes distance or so as he was <ahem> a frequent feeder.
If you can build in a bit of resilience with occasional expressed milk, that might help against any unexpected drama (hospital stays etc). My dh had to spend time on a neuro ward and no under 12s were permitted. It was thankfully when dd1 was a baby and she stayed with her childminder. I just dropped off a ton of frozen milk, bottles, and onesies and went to the hospital for six days. My childminder was a freaking godsend. We didn’t know if dh would live, so even though his parents flew out, we were in a hotel near the hospital. The hospital was a three hour drive from home.
@nachthexe I do want DD to have a good bond with both sets of GPs. My family live further away so we see them less often. I think I would find it just as odd to get a message like this from my mum but I find it easier to talk to her and so would be able to say I'm not really ready yet.
I think it's OK to say 'it's lovely that you want to spend time with her, but I just don't feel ready for that yet.'
As someone else said, maybe a run of the mill event like getting your hair cut or going to an appointment might be a good chance to try it out though, when you are ready.
If you're not ready then just tell your MIL that. She isn't owed time alone with your DD.
However, 'disappointed' may be clumsy phrasing. I'd not think about it too much unless there is a back story.
I would suggest you consider her offer though. Seperation anxiety begins when babies are approx 8 months and it is nice when they already have a relationship with someone else so you can have a little time for yourself. Could you trial just an hour at first or whatever you are comfortable with?
I would just be honest. Your MIL just wants to dote on her new grandchild but you just aren’t there yet.
Send her a message, tell her you definitely do t want her to feel disappointed but you aren’t ready to leave her yet. Organise a wee day for her to come to the house and spend time together and tell her that when the time comes for babysitting your daughter will love having time alone with her granny ; just not right now.
Your daughter isn’t going anywhere but unfortunately over excited grandparents have high expectations and hold you accountable when they aren’t met. Try not to worry.
if you dont feel ready to leave her then you are not ready and dont feel bad about that, you can tell her that it is no reflection on her as a mother, grandmother or person but you are just not ready and that you KNOW she as a parent will UNDERSTAND and accept that... (and if she cant understand and accept that then it may take you a lot longer to feel you can leave her with MIL if ever...)
@coffeeaddiction thank you. When she is a little older I definitely do want her to spend time with her but right now I just don't feel ready.
Tbh it has taken me by surprise how attached I am to DD. We have had many babysitting offers from neighbours, family and friends but both DH and I would rather spend time with DD (and our dog) than go to the cinema for instance. I know there will come a time but for now I don't want to leave her. Is this selfish of me?
Thanks everyone! I will follow your advice and tell MIL I'm not ready.
The disappointed comment was definitely intentional. There is a history of her being very manipulative with DH to get her way - he always feels like he's letting her down in someway. I sent him her text and he was annoyed and said he would phone her. I told him not to - I thought I should respond myself.
Hey newmum, it's not selfish. She's your daughter and you have a real sense of how precious this time is when they are very young. People are kind to offer but you only get this time once, you enjoy her you're not obliged to pass her around and share her with anyone till you are ready.
I found it very hard as I lived near my mil and not my own mum till my dd was 11 months. My mil seemed fairly over keen and much more pushy than my mom ever would have been.
she was always texting and calling in and had her whole house set up for her to stay overnight. I felt the pressure to hand over my dd constantly and I hated it.
Being kind but direct and clear will help you here. Say sorry to hear you're disappointed but I'm not ready to be without her yet. Don't dance around it and make excuses as it just becomes an exhausting conversation.
It's taken me two years and divorcing my dd's dad to get to the place where I can just say no and not explain myself and not feel too guilty but it's brilliant now I have!
i actually find it odd that you don’t leave dd with dh except to walk the dog so you obviously aren’t ready to leave her with anyone else. You’re setting DD up to get hysterical when you’re out of sight. I’d also imagine dh feels “disappointed” as well as you don’t trust him to cope with dd either. Get a grip op before no one is able to mind dd except you. I shudder to think how you’d react if you had to leave her for work.
It sounds like you have separation anxiety. You’ve barely left her for 15 min intervals with your own husband within the last 6 months. It might be healthy for you to start leaving her with people to work yourself up to it. It’s completely normal for grandparents and others to want time alone with the baby by now.
I am going to go against the grain here and say I think you should put yourself out a little bit and let grandma spend some time with her - if you really do want your child to develop a close bond with her.
6 months is when separation anxiety can kick in and you don't want to be in the position where you NEED to leave her with a relative, and her having had no expertise of another Carer..
it's a healthy thing to do .. and it's kind to your child's grandma..
I'm not suggesting you take off for a long weekend - but finding something to do for an hour once a week , that helps establish a bond, and therefore childcare options should you ever have an emergency , would be both a sensible and kind thing to do.
What are your return to work plans as about 6 months I'm to mat leave I started leaving DD for an hour or 2 with GPs. However, it was at my pace on my terms. I dislike the text from MIL with her disappointment and can we sort it out this week. I would text back thanks for the offer, I'm not ready yet but I'll come back to you when I am. I wouldn't allow MIL to start dictating what you are and are not ready for.
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