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MIL visiting us, advice pls!

hi ladies.

i need advice on oh's mother. bit of background...she left oh on his own when he was 18 to move abroad with her partner, this was about 5 years ago. oh has no other family except a brother he is not close to. she came to visit him a few times and he went to visit her once. we got together when she had been living abroad for about a year. i met her a few times before we had our son who is now 15 months old. we let her stay with us when she visited even though she has lots of friends and siblings (oh doesnt see any of them) she would ask if she could stay with us, putting us on the spot to say yes, which i was never comfortable with (oh and i are private people and like our own space) and she would always stay longer than she had said and we never felt we couldnt let her (oh cant stand up for himself and would hate to upset anyone) when she is here she just gets in the way, messes the house up and eats all our food and does nothing to help. so when ds arrived i said to oh that i didnt want her to stay over night with us again (having a newborn is hard enough without another person to look after) he agreed. but wouldnt tell her so since ds has been born she has stayed with us a couple of times. but she doesnt do anythin with ds, she is one of those people that want to so nice thing with ds like sit and hold him, but she doesnt know what to do with his if he crys and wouldnt ever change a nappy or anything! (in my opinion she was a rubbish mother to my oh and his brother, for example she would lay in bed all day and leave oh at age 10 to wander the streets and had no idea where he was, didnt do any family stuff with her kids etc) and she split with their dad when oh was 4 and his dad hasnt been involved much since. cut a long story short, oh's mum's partner had suddenly died, and she has moved back to our area. she seems keen to come and see out son and she has been once since she moved back a couple of weeks ago, she came one day after oh finished work, he picked her up and dropped her home as she doesnt have a car. but she has now said she wants to come earlier in the day next week, meaning oh will be at work and i will have to spend time with her on my own with my son, iv never done this before and dont want to. am i being really mean? i just dont like her, i dont mind her seeing our son but i dont want to spend time alone with her, id prefer oh to be here.she could come at the weekend as oh doesnt work weekends. but she has suggested to oh a week night. she is very sensitive and would be upset if i said anything. im also 28 weeks pregnant with our second child. please give me advice, am i being silly??

ashy xxx


  • hmmm difficult one, and i know where your coming from as to put it mildly i've not always had an easy relationship with my MIL to say the least! However, your husband probably feels stuck in the middle - and to be honest, whatever has happened in the past, your husband is still on talking terms with her and her partner has just suddenly died - i'd say give her a break, let her come round, maybe try and find something to do i.e. go to a toddler group with her, or to the park, or a trip into town - i always found that less strenuous as you aren't having to think up conversation all the time. And if she does have to come to your house then could you plan around nap time so she'll only be there for a couple of hours? Say after lunch, about 2 or 3 oclock, and then your older child needs feeding at 5!!??!

  • Hi Ashyashy,

    I think perhaps a 2nd chance is in order. Your MIL is probably feeling very vulnerable and full of grief right now. I know you have said what a terrible mother she was to your OH but he is still on speaking terms with her and trying have a relationship so it would be a bit off for you to push her away on these grounds. It maybe that she is trying to build bridges and make up for what she hasnt done in the past.

    I know haveing guests to stay over is disruptive and a pain in the neck. I hate it when I have to have guests stay as it means fuss and mess and sometimes effort. That being said as my DH family live in Northern Ireland I would never refuse as its important to him. Its something I think not many people like but just have to accept Im afraid.

    I would suggest take lo to a soft play area . If conversation is strained it wont matter as you will be busy running around after lo. Or perhaps as your quite far along MIL will oblige?? you never know. I know it can be tricky but her making the effort to come to yours when only you and lo are there sounds like she is trying to show you she wants to get to know both you and lo and is not just interested in being in your sons life but your familys. I could be wrong and she simply wants to get home earlier to watch corrie or something?? lol

    I hope things work out. xx
  • thanks for your replies. the problem at the moment is that i dont have a car (oh uses it for work) and i struggling with back pain etc due to the pregnancy so walking far is VERY difficult! she wouldnt offer to take lo out by herself i think because she wouldnt feel comfortable as she hasnt had any contact with children since she had hers 25 years ago and she doesnt know how to deal with my son. and i doubt very much he would go with her as he is pretty clingy! could i suggest that she comes out with us as a family at the weekend instead? also once she is at our home oh has to give her a lift home as there are no buses and she usually stays pretty late. xx
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