Free childcare is a great thing, especially if it’s from the grandparents. It’s a win-win for everyone – mum can work knowing bub is with a relative, mother-in-law gets to spend time with her grandbaby and baby can bond with grandma.
But this grannie may have crossed the line when it comes to caring for her grandson after she took it upon herself to breastfeed him (or attempt to) when he was upset.
Now the furious mother is speaking up, banning grannie from babysitting and ultimately losing out on free childcare. Is she warranted? Or should she forgive her and move on?
The mum headed to Reddit’s AITA (Am I the Asshole) thread, to find out.
AITA for not wanting MIL to watch my baby after she tried to breastfeed him?
The poster writes,
My husband and I both work full time and we have a 2-month-old. My mother-in-law comes to our house every weekday and watches him for free while we work.
We’re on week 3 of this arrangement since I went back to work after maternity leave. It’s very kind of her to do this for our family and I appreciate it immensely.”
As the mum explains, her bub is breastfed and she pumps milk for when she is at work. The system is working pretty well and the mum explains she’s really enjoying the breastfeeding experience.
MIL breastfeeding baby drama
That is until one day she decided to check on her baby on her phone via her baby monitor app. She was greeted with a clear picture of her son in grannie’s arms, being breastfed. Weird, much?
When I looked at the camera, MIL was holding him and she had her shirt up and he was latched onto her breast. I was shocked and horrified.
I called her right away and she didn’t answer, so I had to sit there and watch her attempt to breastfeed my baby. He was latched on, but obviously not getting any milk as my mother in law is not lactating.”
The mum got a hold of her hubby who contacted his mum. MIL explained that the baby was really upset. That breastfeeding him (or letting him try at least) was the “only thing she could think of to calm him down enough to sleep.”
Grandma breastfed all her own children and knew this method worked to calm a crying infant.
‘The only way to calm him down’
Okay. So we have a screaming baby, a non-lactating grannie, and a working mum.
In the heat of the moment, with an inconsolable baby, we can see how grannie may have wanted to calm him down. But… we also have a bottle of breastmilk in the fridge. Plus most likely a dummy, a swaddle, and plenty of other sleep aides.
Dried-up grannie boobie probably isn’t the most logical choice here. Sorry, Gran, but that’s a hard NOPE. It may have worked for your kids 30+ years ago, but not this time around. Put ’em away.
No babysitting for you
Anyhoo, the story continues. As the poster explains, it wasn’t just her that was furious about what had happened. MIL was also peeved, claiming that checking the camera was an invasion of privacy.
The father gets why his wife is upset but wants to give his mum another chance. I mean, free daycare is free daycare.
But the posters isn’t have a bar of it.
I don’t want her watching my baby anymore. We can afford a nanny or daycare. When I told my MIL this, she freaked out and said I was being a bitch and she was just trying to calm the baby down and it wasn’t a big deal.
She says I’m taking her grandchild away from her and being unfair. Am I being unreasonable here? I’m so upset with her and just completely baffled at why she would do this that I never even want to see her again, let alone have her anywhere near my baby, even though that would mean spending extra money and taking away something she really seems to enjoy doing. AITA?
What does the internet say?
Reddit folk have spoken and confirmed that the poster is Not the Asshole here. The MIL is. But what do you think?
Would you ban your MIL and give up the free childcare if you caught her breastfeeding your child? Or would you give her another chance? And, if so, would you still keep tabs on her through the baby monitor?
What to read next
Oddly enough, this isn’t the first time this has happened. Check out: