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what to do about a mother-in-law?

I have a mother-in-law that thinks she knows best about everything. She ask me if she can give my son something like a metal spoon to play with, I tell her no I dont want him to play with that, she ignores me and gives it to him anyways. She does stuff like that alot. She ignores everything I say about what to do with my son. How would you handle this? If I try to tell her she tells me well it wont hurt him and continues to do it so I really cant talk to her about it. She just totally disregards me as a mother. If I take something away she gave him, she just gives it back to him.

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Asked by Newmommys101 at 2:52 AM on Dec. 2, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Level 3 (23 Credits)
Answers (23)
  • I have been in your situation before, and let me tell you DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT NOW!!!!... I let it go on for too long..7 yrs to be need to set your rules for your child, and if she doesn't like it..well too DAMN BAD! hun..

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:55 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • Tell her your the mother and she is the grandmother. which means what you say goes and you want to raise your child the way you want to. and if she could respect your parenting. GL!!!

    Answer by MoMMy2aDiVA08 at 3:03 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • If she won't listen to you, then keep your baby away from her. Explain why you're doing so, and that if her behavior and listening skills were to improve, she could see her grandson more often.

    Also, enlist your husband's help. It's his son, too, and he should back you up on this. Sometimes it helps a lot for them to hear it from their own son instead of just a daughter-in-law.

    Answer by DragonRiderMD at 3:41 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • For some things, you can say that the dr said so. There are medical articles that might back you up on some stuff. Otherwise, you need to put your foot down, even if it's gently. "Look, I love how engaged you are with him, but I'm really trying to be consistent and I would really appreciate it if you could allow me to be the parent. I feel embarrased and offended when you outright disapprove or reject the way that I interact with my own child." etc etc. Good luck!

    Answer by sweetphoenix529 at 4:32 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • Maybe in her years she has learned a bit or two about parenting. Don't cut off ties over a spoon.
    I suggest taking a step back and seeing if this is worth causing family trouble about. It may be possible that you are too neurotic and over protective of your son and MIL is trying to help you to see life isn't all bad. I am guessing this is your first baby and you have the "new mom" jitters and everything freaks you out. Try relaxing and enjoying life.
    Now if MIL was handing your baby a steak knife to play with, that would be cause to panic.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:33 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • When we would take our daughter out, we would give her a pile of metal teaspoons; they kept her entertained.

    That said, you are the parent. Mothers-in-law are tricky, and it would be best if her son spoke to her and let her know that you both expect her to leave the parenting to the parents.

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:52 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • My MIL has the same grandma-knows-best, ignores-what-I-tell-her attitude. She doesn't know it, but this is the main reason why she will never be allowed to babysit my son. She has tried to use the same "it won't hurt him" reasoning to attempt to justify her behavior. I just put my foot down and stand firm. I usually reply with: "whether or not it will hurt him is not the point. He is MY son. This is how my husband and I have decided to raise him, and that needs to be respected. If you can not respect our rules and our parenting decisions, we can stop visiting."


    Answer by sallymoon at 6:28 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • I think people are missing the boat, because of the metal spoon.

    She asked if she could do something. You said no. She did it anyway. Perhaps a metal spoon isn't a big deal. But I know when my babies were under 4 months, they did nothing but destruction with a metal spoon. The issue isn't the metal spoon. It's her just blatantly ignoring your wishes, even if she thinks they're silly, or even if they actually are silly.

    The problem will come in when it is something serious (my grandmother in law HAS handed my baby, six months, a steak knife, lol). Then, you are going to be stuck wondering if she's going to ask, and then just ignore you. Bottom line. If she can't handle you saying no to something small, how's she going to react to something bigger? This sets the stage.

    Your husband needs to be the one to say "geez mom, she said no, why ask if you're going to ignore her answer?"

    Answer by apexmommy at 6:54 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • I like sallymoons answer, pretty close to mine. My MIL is like this & she's manipulative & lies too so I have issues w/ what she lets my daughter do & the example she's setting. I watch her w/ the older grandkids & let me tell you I'll be dead before she watches my kid!! Once you make a statement like sallymoons be prepared to follow thru w/ it. A few shorter visits will get teh point across. Stick to your guns & don't give in, she's gonna test you.

    Answer by Nyx7 at 7:06 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

  • I agree with apexmommy. Your husband needs to say something. In my house I deal with my family, on things like this and he deals with his.


    Answer by cornflakegirl3 at 7:42 AM on Dec. 2, 2009

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