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to think that a week is a bit long for MIL to visit?

(35 Posts)
frans Tue 05-Aug-08 16:09:11

Probably being a little oversensitive because MIL insisted on staying at our house from the day I went into labour - even though we'd already suggested that we'd prefer for her to stay in a hotel. She basically confronted me about this and I felt I had to back down. She was in our (small) house for the first two days after I came home with DD and didn't lift a finger - she didn't even leave the room when the midwife's visited and on one occasion even banged on the door for me to let her in after a trip to the supermarket as she couldn't wait for DH (who was locking the car) to get to the door with his key. This was 2 days after a long and difficult birth. She's now announced that she's coming to stay for a week and I don't feel that I've had any choice. I'm worried that she's going to just sit there all day creating more work for me. Am I being unfair? we only see her every 2 months or so as she lives at the other end of the country. DD is 12 weeks old and first grandchild.

belgo Tue 05-Aug-08 16:10:28

Five days is my maximum for having family to stay; three nights for friends.

taliac Tue 05-Aug-08 16:12:09

YANBU. Although it might be tricky to negotiate down.

My MIL is very helpful so she gets to stay as long as she wants.

Less helpful family members, well a long weekend is my limit.

posieflump Tue 05-Aug-08 16:13:54

yanbu
you need to get your dh to tell her that she can't dictate when she comes, she needs to be invited
you have to get him to sort this out now otherwise it will carry on
I have been strict with my dh - no inlaw visiting (they live 300 miles away so it's always for 3 nights) if he isn't on leave. They can only come if he takes time off work

mrsflowerpot Tue 05-Aug-08 16:15:34

My MIL stayed for a week last week. She invited herself down 'to help' and we didn't think we could say no. Now I love my MIL and have no issues with her generally, but both dh and I were very glad to have the house to ourselves again. A week is too long imo - it would be too long if it were my mum too.

posieflump Tue 05-Aug-08 16:15:40

ne needs to say something like 'I'm really sorry but <insert your name> is very busy that week with toddler groups, baby swimming etc, let me get back to you with a more convenient time'.... the a week later ring her and offer a weekend in a months time, or suggest you go and stay withe her for a weekend

stillstanding Tue 05-Aug-08 16:21:03

I am absolutely with posieflump on this one. If you don't have that kind of relationship with your MIL then a week is just too long.

My grandfather used to say that fish and family go off after three days and he was right.

You (and really by that I mean DH in this case) have to set the boundaries NOW.

TenaciousG Tue 05-Aug-08 16:22:51

YANBU. A week is too long. I think every two months/other end of the country is admirable keeping in touch. My mil is really lovely, but even so I had to drop extreme hints when midwife was due round and she continued to sit there happily on sofa, (despite having been round literally all day and incidentally not lifted a finger) ie 'oh dp, could you please go up and check bedroom is tidy? I will have to take MW up there because she is due Any Minute and has to check my stitches today' grin. Cue MIL asking dp if he could drop her home, job done; she is a lovely woman really, it is just those early days when you are out of sorts and sore and tired that are tricky to negotiate. But a hint dropped and taken means everyone knows where they are and no one is hurt or embarrassed.

It is very rude of your mil not to leave the room when MW is round, and not just cos of potential fanwa exposure; what if you want to chat about pnd or whatever?

RedFraggle Tue 05-Aug-08 16:34:10

A week is too long! We have reduced MIL visits to 3 nights absolute max and things are much better. I know what you mean about them not leaving the room. My MIL sat there through my HV visit just after DD was born. My DH asked her to please leave the room in the end. (He wanted to discuss my birth issues with the HV) she did go but it was poor that he had to ask!
Although she "won" by visiting us instantly after out first child was born despite us being very clear we didn't want houseguests. The experience did make me put my foot down VERY forcefully about her not coming when DS was born. She came a month later for a weekend. smile
Get your DH to say that a week is too long when you are trying to get your little one into a routine (even if you have zero plans for a routine!)

Gateau Tue 05-Aug-08 16:40:31

Far, far, far too long!
I can barely do a night with mine - because she is vey lazy and I know I would end up running after her for a week.

We have EXACTLY the same setup: a mil who lives hours away (thank feck) who overstayed her welcome (9 days fgs) after coming down straight after I left hospital so I had to literally come home, put baby down in his carseat and start tidying because she could not wait.

She stayed in the room while mw's visited and discussed my lochia and stitches which, yes actually, I could have done with the mw looking at, but couldn't because I had no privacy to discuss anything. hmm She kept telling me what I could and couldn't do (You can't leave the house for two weeks, can't bathe with the baby, can't eat fruit it'll give baby wind, can't use tummytub cos mil disapproves of it)

She had her head virtually in my cleavage while I tried to get to grips with bf and was constantly watching, and at one point intervened when baby was taking a minute to latch on, shoving his head onto me which was just unbelieveable (I hadn't asked for, and didn't need, help) angry She would also rush into our room at night if the baby cried for more than 30 seconds.

And what upset me the most at the time was she rearranged my kitchen when I had to go back into hospital with ds (jaundice) so my house didn't even feel like mine when I got home. She's so pushy and overpowering, I was virtually homicidal by the time she left!

Sorry this has turned into a rant! lol grin

I've managed to go a year with no visits here but she's talking about coming down again. I wouldn't mind her coming for a day or two but I know she'll push for a week as she always has to push your boundaries. I think a week is too long, especially when you don't have a fantastic relationship. You need your space and time to regain your inner balance. Better to have a weekend a few times a year imho.

Hope it's not too bad for you, try to have confidence in your parenting decisions and stand firm- and don't let her sit on her arse. Jokingly say "right, earn your keep- hoover/kettle is there!" or just give her the baby and go for a sleep.

Gateau Tue 05-Aug-08 16:45:57

You think that's bad.
My MIL lay down on the sofa the day after I got out of hosp after a C-section - and lifted her legs while I hoovered under them.
Then, after I had asked her to please clean up the kitchen, she came into the living room while the MW was there trying to help me breastfeed. She just sat on the sofa and stared.

fgs gateau- some people are just thick aren't they! angry

Gateau Tue 05-Aug-08 16:54:16

Yip. But it's her extreme laziness that gets me most.
We are planning to move soon - which means she and my FIL will be coming to stay. I DREAD it.

CuckooClockWorkShy Tue 05-Aug-08 16:55:54

Jamesetc, my x mil was the same. If and when my son ever has a wife and child I will at least know that if I'm staying with them I should be genuinely helpful.

My own mother changed bin liners, cleaned floors, put on washing machine, hung out washing, went shopping..

x Mil wsa like yours. She came for the show.

RhinestoneCowgirl Tue 05-Aug-08 16:56:26

James that is truly shock.

I have sorted the no house guests thing this time by putting DS in the big spare room and making his old room into my office/workroom. I have started telling subtly dropping hints to DH that MIL will not be able to arrive first thing in the morning, stay until 9pm at night, only visiting her hotel room to sleep. I'm thinking of imposing a no guests at mealtimes rule as I got myself in such a state last time (and ended up back in hosp with jaundiced DS too)

Dropdeadfred Tue 05-Aug-08 17:02:29

just say no...and tell dh if she comes you will go and stay elsewhere

CuckooClockWorkShy Tue 05-Aug-08 17:52:57

If I could do it all again, I would look sweetly at my x mil, and say, how kind of you to come to help! There is so much to do! Let me tell you..... And now! I can't wait to see what you will make for dinner! This is so kind of you.

MogTheForgetfulCat Tue 05-Aug-08 19:18:38

YANBU - sounds too long given the history. I wouldn't mind, my MIL is lovely and I get on far better with her than with my own mum. My mum came to stay after DS1 was born - he was just a few days old and DH and I were packing up our flat prior to moving (v bad timing, I know). She did nothing - was waited on hand and foot, didn't help with DS1, packing, cooking, cleaning - didn't even take the blardy dog for a walk. She stayed 3 nights and I think I might have killed her if she had stayed longer.

Sorry, gone off on one all about me... YANBU, 12 weeks is still v little, you are still bedding down with her yourself. If you can't get out of it, try to guilt her into helping. Get DH on the case!

Shoshe Tue 05-Aug-08 19:26:49

Email her, saying, I'm so glad you are coming............... 'I really need somebody to turn out the bedrooms, fill the freezer with cooked food, do a mamouth shop, clean out behind the fridge. It's so kind of you to offer. I can then get on with getting DD into a routine and actually have sometime to myself'

It will send her running....... the other way grin

FranSanDisco Tue 05-Aug-08 19:27:16

[screams at thought of own MIL after birth of dd and long visit of misery that ensued] My MIL does not visit due to laziness ill-health but last time she cam was welcome for a "long weekend" as had burned her bridges and out stayed her welcome on birth of dd. I don't know how dh and myself didn't divorce during those 3 WEEKS!!! [runs off screaming again]

onepieceoflollipop Tue 05-Aug-08 19:37:57

I have the most amazing respect for those of you who have difficult mils who live a distance away. I count my blessings that my loon of a difficult mil lives locally and we can contain ils visits to an hour or so )(preferably at their place so we can leave) prior to any shouting outbursts frustration occurring.

moondog Tue 05-Aug-08 19:41:21

Frans, thefact you see her sooftenspeaks volumes. How good of you! No, week is toooo long. My mil was lovely but never had her longer than 2nights, nor did I stay with her for more than 2. Stand your ground.

Isitjustme2 Tue 05-Aug-08 19:42:15

Why do MILs think it ok to stare whilst breastfeeding / loiter during mw visits??? It amazes me - I thought my MIL was weird, but it seems there are many out there who do / did the same!!! Oh I wish I had the courage at the time to have said something but I was feeling so feeble and her dagger to the heart comment "Your chest hasnt got any bigger has it." {whilst I was in the first few days of breasdtfeeding and worried dd wasnt getting enough) will always stay with me.

To add some hope, with my second, she has been a bit better (or maybe I have learnt to brush off comments) but I am so grateful for the babysitting she does when she is here which gives dh and I some time together, I have gradually learnt to live with it. I still need to psyche myself up before a visit and have the Bach's rescue remedy at hand though. wink

moondog Tue 05-Aug-08 19:43:55

Jesus Isit! I would haverammed a breastpad down her throat and side swiped her with abreastpump. Nasty aul' bitch!!

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