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Old 06-12-2011, 06:41 AM   #11
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

How aggravating! I have similar issues with my MIL - she's looney in her own special way I don't entirely trust her with DD, either. There was a period of time where she was taking care of DD when I first went back to work (the days were split between my mom and her). She just couldn't handle it but wouldn't admit to either (there's a longer story but I'll spare you the details). DH to this day still doesn't understand and even brought up the fact she could help out up with the new baby coming - argh!!!

Anyway, it sounds like you have a good plan in place with the neighbor stopping by/being around. The other thing to remember is that actual reality isn't as usually as bad as we perceive it... good luck and enjoy yourself!

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Old 06-12-2011, 06:50 AM   #12
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

You could alway's you use the excuse of stranger anxiety sense she hasn't seen her in months. & that she might scream the whole time unless she is with some she know's & recognizes so the neighbor has to stay the sitter for that night.
Basically put it as you are concerned that it might make MIL feel bad but she would feel worse if she had to deal with a screaming baby for 6 hrs + DD will feel awful too. & it would be easier on everyone if the plan's are not changed.
Also that you do not want to hurt or offend the neighbors your only babysitters you know , like & trust in the area because they have been planing on this for a while.
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Old 06-12-2011, 06:58 AM   #13
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First - she will likely be just fine. It's not that long (though I do understand your nervousness). Second... If you and DF are communicating well enough to have an open(ish) conversation, I'd ask him how he feels about it and confess feeling nervous about dd being with someone she is so unfamiliar with though you really want her to know MIL (I said openISH right?)
If you can get him on board, maybe having the neighbor there too (that would be VERY sweet of the neighbor) for at least part of the time before she goes down for the night. If not, me I'd just lump it. She will likely be just fine and it's DFs mother after all. Ask the neighbors to check in (maybe invite them for sinner since she doesn't cook?) and let it go.

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Old 06-12-2011, 07:09 AM   #14
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

I personally would never leave my son with my MIL if she was that way. I would ask myself: Will she feed change or generally care for DD the way you would like. Is she careful about watching she doesn't put something in her mouth or any of the other baby things they do. Will she know what to do in an emergency or if DD gets sick? What will she do if DD wont stop crying?
If you can't be sure she would make those decisions the way you would like I would not let her watch DD even for a few hours. If you leave her with your MIL and the neighbor visits what is she supposed to do if your MIL is doing something wrong? Will she feel like she can really step in or will she feel like your MIL is the grandma so she has more authority? Its a hard choice and to be honest I am Very particular about who watches my DS. There is only one couple I know amongst a very large group of family and friends that I have ever trusted with DS. We are kind of those crazy over protective parents but that is how I would feel in your situation. I also have a weird and crazy MIL who has a life long history of bad choices and bad parenting....needless to say she will never be allowed to babysit.
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:16 AM   #15
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I totally understand. My mil is "unique" so I have serious issues. Ex: took my 4 month old dd to her work for a visit...without a car seat!! Laid my dd in the backseat! Yeah, I flipped. My only advice is if she MUST baby sit, write every single thing out on paper. I leave very specific instructions and prepare as much as possible (food is laid out, bottles were always prepared, strict orders for no medications to b given and only give food I've approved, etc). I do all of this stuff because ice cream at 3 months, her philosophy that she didn't kill her kids so she's good, and lack of general common sense.

Best of luck. But I will say, if you don't come to a solution that your comfortable with, you will have a miserable time.
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:44 AM   #16
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

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Old 06-12-2011, 07:52 AM   #17
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

I left my DD alone with my MIL once when she was an infant... it will never happen again.

I like the idea of having the neighbor there with your MIL. You can blame it on stranger anxiety or say that the neighbors would really be disappointed because they were looking forward to watching her... use whatever excuse you need to. I think that's win-win because your DD will feel more comfortable, you will feel more comfortable, and your MIL will still feel welcome to come, too.
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:59 AM   #18
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

Well, it sounds like you don't want to cause strain with your SO, which puts a hanger in the situation.

Personally, I do not leave my child with anybody I don't trust. If you feel that there is even the SLIGHTEST chance she could hurt your child, then I would not leave her alone with your little one.

My son is 19 months old & my MIL has never babysat for more than 3 hours. She REALIZES this & said something about it the other day.

She point blank asked me (with DH in a different room) when she was going to get to "keep" Luke for more than 3 hours. Without changing a thing on my face or in my tone, I let her know, I wasn't sure when or if that would happen but that it wouldn't be any time soon.

Until he is old enough to tell me what all happened & let me know how he felt while I was gone, she won't keep him longer than I am comfortable with.

For example: I have seen her get frustrated with a toddler who wouldn't nap & put VICKS VAPOR RUB on his eye lids (which BURNS) so that he would cry himself to sleep. Because of this, she will NEVER EVER EVER watch my children when they MIGHT get tired/need a nap. EVER.

If we need a sitter at bedtime, my little sister babysits. She does believe in CIO, but knows that we don't, and honors my wishes that DS either be snuggled to sleep or allowed to just tucker out & fall asleep on his own (watching t.v. or something).

My SIL is only 2 years younger than my little sister but is about 15 years less mature---she doesn't get left alone with DS ever. She has a serious temper issue (throws her dog when she gets mad at it (tiny poodle) throws things at her bird's cage when it sings, etc....) and I am terrified that she would throw or shake the baby. She has "watched" him while I nap or shower, but if he were crying or upset I'd go out & tend to him.

All that to say, it is up to YOU, the MOTHER, to find a safe, nurturing, environment for your child if you are going to be away from her.

If something were to happen while she was in your MIL's care, what would you do?

How would you feel?

Would you & SO be able to handle that?
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Old 06-12-2011, 08:41 AM   #19
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

Thank you everyone for so many responses. It really means a lot to me!! It is already difficult enough leaving DD with anyone, but the MIL is really just a wrench in it. I may have called my neighbor after only a 45 minute dentist appointment to make sure DD was still ok.

I've simmered down a bit and talked with my ma (my source of sanity), and we've come basically to the same two angles in what I'll say to SO. Either the stranger thing, or "Oh, but the neighbor really wanted to see Mabel. Can't she just hang out too???" I think the stranger thing is a much stronger argument. I can put a mirror up. DD hasn't seen MIL for SIX MONTHS, and that was only for an hour or so. Would he be comfortable with someone else that she hadn't seen in six months babysitting her? Even if it was MY MOM, I don't think I'd be ok with it!!!

So, this is what has my gears turning now. The two different possible angles I have are different. If I say one thing and that doesn't really fly with SO, I can't use the other because then it will definitely be obvious I'm just trying for anything so that MIL isn't alone with DD. Then again, as my Dad pointed out, the only real important thing is the well-being of DD.

I definitely want to go to the concert, but if this doesn't fly with SO, I may just say he can take his mom to the concert instead. Surely he has to understand.....!
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Old 06-12-2011, 09:12 AM   #20
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Re: Possible Babysitting Crisis with MIL PLEASE HELP ME!

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Originally Posted by rachelmaria View Post
So, basically I should approach it with this: This is already going to be a major change/strain on DD. I wouldn't mind if MIL watches her as long as neighbor is also there so that there is someone she recognizes and knows also there (and someone I trust, but that part is silent ).
This is a great idea! I was going to suggest something similar. Your DD is likely to be scared to be left alone with someone she isn't familiar with. Maybe you could, depending on just how close you are with the neighbors, tell them the situation too. It's possible that they changed their plans around to accomodate your DD that night, and they might be really disappointed to have been removed from the job as well. Or at least, that could be an excuse.
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