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MiL vs my parenting style

60 replies

purpleturtle25 · 25/11/2019 20:15

I had the benefit of watching my 2SiLs closely start families and navigate motherhood and observe firsthand the choices they made when it came to parenting and the repercussions of their parenting styles. This helped me to form a pretty clear picture in my head of how I wanted to do things when My DC arrived.

DH, for the most part, sees eye to eye with my parenting choices. MiL on the other hand, seems to be looking for any opportunity to do all the things I want to keep DS away from. I know grandparents want to spoil their grandkids but does she get this privilege considering she lives with us? Shouldn't she have to take on more of a parenting role?

Eg: We have tried hard to keep DS relatively tech free so far. Hes 14 months old. I left him for 30mins with her the other day to pop to the shops and she plopped him in front of the telly? Even though she knows he doesn't watch tv. Today I was occupied with sorting out some new furniture we had delivered, she took him and put him in front of the ipad. These are just a few examples of things. It's driving me mad.

Am I overthinking things? Should I speak to her about it? It's not like she doesn't know/has forgotten what DS is and isn't allowed.

If I saw her occasionally I would've turned a blind eye. But I live with my MiL. I know how most MNers feel about this so please try to look past this as it isn't something I can change immediately. 

OP posts:

Needbettername · 25/11/2019 20:18

I think it very much depends if MIL lives with you or you live with MIL. If it's her house then harder to deal with.


purpleturtle25 · 25/11/2019 20:19

@Needbettername its her house

OP posts:

MrsTerryPratchett · 25/11/2019 20:22

You're living in her house and she's doing childcare for you (for free I assume). Yup, as long as it's not dangerous, her choice.

Move out?


myusernamewastakenbyme · 25/11/2019 20:24

Get a grip...does it really matter ffs.


CFlemingSmith · 25/11/2019 20:25

I have the same set up.
There are definitely things I don't agree with when it comes to how in laws parent my DS, and they have him 3 days a week.
But it's their house and I'm getting free child care, so I weigh it up, and in the long run the things they do that I don't agree with won't bother me. What is more important is that my DS is being looked after by a family member, and not just put into a nursery


Leaannb · 25/11/2019 20:33

Free childcare is never free


Amanduh · 25/11/2019 20:36

Get a grip. It’s tv. Also ‘shouldn’t she have to take on more of a parenting role?’ Erm no. She isn’t your childs parent.


Fatted · 25/11/2019 20:38

30 minutes TV in the grand scheme of things isn't anything I would get bothered about.

If she did something dangerous, I could see your point. But half an hour of ceebeebies isn't going to do any harm surely?


AloeVeraLynn · 25/11/2019 20:39

Kinda difficult if you live with her. It really changes the dynamic I think. The grandparent ends up becoming a sort of extra parent and it's tricky to establish the hierarchy. I'm not sure what to suggest.


EL8888 · 25/11/2019 20:44

Your child = your rules. The fact you live at the same place is a red herring. Does she for example tell you what clothes to wear?! She’s crossing the line and out of order l think

@Leaannb totally unfortunately


Disfordarkchocolate · 25/11/2019 20:46

Your examples wouldn't bother me at all. Feeding food I didn't approve of, changing their clothes to something else or cutting their hair would all bloody annoy me. I'd also get annoyed at being slack with safety of swearing.


OddBoots · 25/11/2019 20:47

If you leave him with her then you have to accept it but if she is taking him then that is a different matter, that's where I'd draw the line.


AnneLovesGilbert · 25/11/2019 20:48

If you don’t trust her to look after him the way you do you can’t leave him with her. I agree a child that age doesn’t need a tablet but if she won’t respect your wishes you don’t have many options.


churchandstate · 25/11/2019 20:50

Don’t leave her babysitting. And move out. 🤷🏻‍♀️


Dandelion1993 · 25/11/2019 20:52

A bit of TV or upad for half an hour while you do something won't kill him.

She's helping you out and you're in her house. Bite your tounge and move on.


Butterymuffin · 25/11/2019 20:54

How long are you planning to live with her for?

Also, is this the first time you've clashed or is there a long back story?


FuckYouLadyThatsWhatStairsAre4 · 25/11/2019 20:54

Move out.


DeathStare · 25/11/2019 20:55

Life is full of compromises. Only you can decide whether it is better to live in your MIL's house and have her babysit occasionally but she does it her way, or whether it is better for you to move out and only allow her to babysit if she agrees to do it your way.

As she isn't doing anything dangerous, personally this wouldn't be the hill I chose to die on.


DeathStare · 25/11/2019 20:58


I know grandparents want to spoil their grandkids but does she get this privilege considering she lives with us? Shouldn't she have to take on more of a parenting role?

Did you include her in discussions about whether you and your partner should have a child? Does she get a one third decision in any matters to do with your child? That would be a parenting role. If you aren't happy to give her that, then you don't get to criticise her for not taking on a parenting role when it suits you.


anonnancy · 25/11/2019 20:58

If you live with her then what she chooses to do to entertain your child whilst she is caring for him in her house is up to her I'd say...

30 mins of tv is nothing imo and I don't see a problem with children watching TV - it never did me any harm and I grew up watching cartoons in my nana's kitchen at the table with colouring books and crayons. I'd flit between watching the tv and drawing / colouring.


purpleturtle25 · 25/11/2019 21:16

The TV thing was just an example. There are other things like feeding him stuff Behind my back and unswaddling him and waking him from naps coz she doesn't believe in swaddling (and baby nap times are precious moments in the early days!), and the list goes on. And I totally respect everyone has different views when it comes to technology. I just want to try and avoid it if I can 🤷🏻‍♀️
I know in the long run 30 mins won't do any harm, which is why I said if we were visiting her occasionally I wouldn't bat an eyelid.
I know some of you also suggested don't leave him in her care, I generally don't. The shops thing was a one-off and he was napping when I left and He wasn't due to wake up anytime soon.

Oh well, I guess I'm being petty, thanks ladies for giving me some clarity.

OP posts:

Disfordarkchocolate · 25/11/2019 21:19

Waking him up is crazy but I thought swaddling wasn't recommended any more? My youngest is a teen so I know lots of advice has changed.


ColdTattyWaitingForSummer · 25/11/2019 21:21

I don’t think you’re being petty. I can totally get why it’s frustrating. But unfortunately I think the only solution moving forward, is you guys moving out!


Teachermaths · 25/11/2019 21:25

Swaddling at 14 months is definitely not recommended. They needs to be able to move themselves!

The TV is annoying but you are living in her house. Move out.


FluffOffFFS · 25/11/2019 21:27

Not much to say other than pick your battles. Wrt swaddling: was this when DS was (much) younger? I'm pretty certain it's not considered safe once they can roll over, which I assume DS can? Or do you mean a sleeping bag, rather than a proper swaddle?

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