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my niece

Okay so my niece is 5 now and its absolutely redicilous how my brother and my SIL take care of her. Her teeth are rotten on the top fronts, she smells like pee, her pants are always high waters and crack showing even though all of us buy her new clothes, her shirts are like three sizes too small showing her belly and crack, her hair is ALWAYS in knots and its like to her butt so the knots are horrid, and like Isaid she smells....she has dirt under her nails that is REALLY black. I bought her detangler, some clothes for tonight cause she is spending the night and they sent me with nothing, a tooth brush and tooth paste, bubble bath and shampoo and conditioner. My question is....what the hell am I suppose to do. Should I say something or should I just keep showing this little girl a happy life that her parents are giving her. It feels wrong to do both. If i say something its not REALLY my place and I dont want to ruin the...cont

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Bugsmommy1908

Asked by Bugsmommy1908 at 1:23 AM on Mar. 25, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 3 (23 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • ...relationship and if I just keep taking care of her behind their back i feel like I am hurting my niece by showing her that her parents are in the wrong behind their backs.
    Bugsmommy1908

    Answer by Bugsmommy1908 at 1:24 AM on Mar. 25, 2009

  • That is a difficult situation. When my niece was visiting us (she's 8) I noticed that she had a funk about her. I mentioned it to my husband and he blurted it out to his sister (my neice's mom) in front of everyone, and she got really upset. I didn't want him to say anything because it is not our place, but he could have done it with a little more sensitivity. If I were in your situation I wouldn't come right out and say anything but I would hint around that they need to take better care of her. Maybe say something about how small her clothes are to start out with, and see what happens. She is also at the age where she can start to do things for herself so you could send her home with the toothbrush and tell her that she needs to brush her teeth every morning. Teach her how to take care of herself. It is so sad that this poor little girl is suffering because of her parent's actions.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:46 AM on Mar. 25, 2009

  • Its probably a good idea to continue showing her how to keep herself clean. Show her how to clean herself with a wash clothe in the sink, washing her face and hands, her feet and bottom. Get her a nail brush and show her how to scrub her nails at night when she brushes her teeth. I would mention the teeth as that is a health issue. Show her how to part her hair, pull it forward and brush it. Get her some pretty head bands and hair ties and show her how to put it back herself with the stipulation that when you see her if her hair isnt brushed you wont get her anymore. Offer her dollar store trips if she continues cleaning herself up.
    mistynights234

    Answer by mistynights234 at 8:12 AM on Mar. 25, 2009

  • Okay, here is my thing. You said that your family has bought her nice clothes that fit, but that she isn't wearing them. Have you been to your brothers house? Are the clothes still in their possession? I personally would be VERY concerned. If she smells like pee, it sounds to me that she is peeing herself....which is gross and a health concern.

    I would talk to your brother away from everyone else. Or sometime, you could just off handedly ask about where that new outfit you just got her is and that you haven't seen it on her yet. You could aslo just mention things like, "did you brush your hair today, silly?" you know in a nice way, but make sure its in front of your brother. i do that thing with my SD with her mom because there have been times where i dont think she brushed it.

    i dont know if it is enough that drastic action could legally happen, but it sounds like its getting close. cont.
    aly38914290

    Answer by aly38914290 at 8:39 AM on Mar. 25, 2009

  • i would do everything you can to work with her like the other posters said, but she is five. that is asking a lot of a five year old. especially if you dont know the rules or routines over there.

    but try to take her out as much as you can, if you can to get baths, hair brushed. you could even offer to get her hair cut with some excuse as a girly day where you go get your nails painted and hair done and shopping or something like that.

    and i would definately find out what has been happening with all the clothes your family has been getting her.
    aly38914290

    Answer by aly38914290 at 8:41 AM on Mar. 25, 2009

  • I think you do need to teach her things her mom should be teaching her. But I also think it IS your place to talk with them about this. Maybe her mom grew up the same way, maybe she really doesn't know she is neglecting her daughter. I don't know how she couldn't, but some people just were never taught things.
    Buffie95

    Answer by Buffie95 at 9:16 AM on Mar. 25, 2009

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