Having a bad day

I'm sure its not just me who has these from time to time. When I was first diagnosed with post natal depression, every day was a bad day. Now that I have had my stay at the Mother Baby Unit and I have some coping strategies in place, I don't have as many bad days. But it still happens. I think that having a young baby makes things harder to control and anticipate - which is why the bad days seem so bad.

Today I had my mother-in-law come over to watch Bubby for a couple of hours while I went to the doctors. This was the second time she had done this. Last week when she watched him I was very disappointed and I was a little anxious that this week it would not be a success either. Last week, she waited for me to leave and then had my father-in-law over. Within 10 minutes they had Bubby out of his bed (when they had been told explicitly to leave him there, per the instructions from the nurses of the Mother Baby Unit). So due to the fact that not only did they do the opposite of what I had asked them to do, but also there was someone in my house, playing with my baby without my knowledge, my anxiety was through the roof. This week, I decided to give her a second chance. She appeared with my sister-in-law (at least she didn't wait for me to leave before having extra people over) and I was out for an hour and a half or so. Bubby was allowed to sleep for a maximum of an hour of it from what I can gather. He was meant to sleep the entire time I was out, he was only just put down to bed as I left. I gave the specific instructions again to leave him in his bed and go in and soothe him if needed but that was it. But when I got home, Bubby was out of bed being played with by my in-laws again. Can someone tell me what to do? How does one get their in-laws (or anyone, actually) to actually follow simple instructions? I'm one for avoiding conflict but it doesn't seem possible in this case.

Anyway, after Bubby's sleep was disrupted, my in-laws left me with a very angry, yelling, red-eyed exhausted Bubby. Thanks. That was at 1pm. 5 hours later and there's been little-to-no silence in the house since. Of course, this is the day that Hubby left work early to look after Bubby so I could complete my Uni work. But of course, inconsolable Bubby was so unhappy that it has taken both of us to try to settle him.

I have gotten the smallest, barest amount of Uni work done. Hubby has barely had 5 minutes to himself. Bubby has been upset and over-stimulated and over-tired all afternoon. Of course, my in-laws are at their peaceful house feeling relaxed and enjoying a quiet family meal together. Meanwhile Hubby and I are bedraggled, frustrated, snappy, grumpy and wrestling with a very unhappy little man. It doesn't seem fair, does it?


  1. My heart goes out to you, cranky babies are not fun!
    Not sure what you can do about your in-laws though, do you have someone else you can leave him with that will follow your instructions?

  2. The only think I can think of is having your hubby say something to them and explain that as a result of disturbing his sleep he was very unsettled and they must let him sleep as instructed.
    How often do they come over? I would suggest having them over so that they can see your routine. Letting them play with him when he is awake.
    By the sounds of it they are just so over the moon about bubby they want to have some time snuggling and playing. Perhaps increase this time where they can then maybe they won't be so tempted to when they come over to babysit.
    Don't give up. This is new learning for everyone. Persist with it for a while and see if they come around to how you do things. If it ends up that they won't listen after numerous attempts then consider other options.
    Hope this helps! x

  3. Oh dear, not a good situation at all. Nothing worse than when babes are over-tired, it tips everything on it's head. I wish I had some advice on how to handle in-law's, but the truth is mine have never looked after our boys. Pretty unusual circumstances, but I just prefer it that way. My parents on the other hand have looked after the boys many times... they are fabulous though, I think sometimes when it's your own Mum and not a Mum-in-law, it's a more relaxed scenario. At the end of the day, he is your little bub and your wish should be their command... easier said than done of course.
    Lovely to meet you Lisa, thank you for your comments on my blog, look forward to following along with your adventures xo

  4. I wish I had some advice on how to deal with your in-laws, but fortunately it's not a situation I've had to deal with. All I know is that when I have to deal with "tricky" situations, I tend to use a little bit of humour to diffuse the awkwardness. Although, not knowing your Mother-in-law I don't know how helpful that advice is. (Humour is also most-likely the last thing from your mind if Bubba has been screaming for hours too!) My children's grandparents are too far away to help out with our kids often, but I think that because of this, the rare occasions that they have offered to help out, I've probably been so relieved to get a break, that I haven't paid much attention to what they are doing with the kids. However, as I said it isn't a regular occurrence so doesn't throw their routines out of whack. I hope you can find a solution because there are enough stresses raising a baby, without having to worry about the in-laws as well!
    I hope Bubba is smiling now xxx

  5. can you take the baby with you? I somehow took my babies, wherever I went, let them nurse pretty much nonstop, but none ever heard them....good luck!!!!
    I am your newest follower..pls follow back if you can.

  6. You poor thing, it's not easy to keep everyone happy. But in this case, it's Bubby that comes first, and they are going to have to do the right thing by him. In the end, it's his routine they are stuffing up.

    I hope you are having a better day today.

  7. Not an easy situation all I can think of is maybe having your partner talk to them and putting it as the instructions from the Mother and Baby unit not just your wishes may give it more authority, as for breastfeeding,yes it's nice to be able to but my Mum and I couldn't be closer and she wasn't able to feed me, there are lots of ways to bond and just holding him when he has a bottle is a lovely time to spend gazing into their little faces. I wish you both the best and look forward to following your progress.

  8. I know it probably doesn't mean much to hear someone say it when you are in the midst of a day like this, but it gets easier...it really does.

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  10. A common dilemma. Grandparents are so excited they always go off and do what they want. I have given up. Hope things start looking up.

  11. My best advice would be to organise your day so that your baby is at his "awake & play time" when you need him looked after. At least he'll be tired by the time you get back for a feed, bath and cuddle. The in-laws will be exhausted too...lol. Just be firm and don't take any nonsense...he's your baby & your rules. If they don't like it then find another sitter who will listen. Their job is to be grandparents...not parents to your child. It's lovely to get help, I got none as my family live in QLD.
    Best of luck with everything...you're a good Mum.
    x Marnie

  12. The only thing that worked for me (because my inlaws although well-meaning, did the same thing) was to either put up with their 'rules' or not ask them to care for the baby. It was really hard, because I needed some help and time out, but in the end it was their way or no way. I chose 'no way' ultimately and found an alternative. It's really tough, isn't it? x

  13. ohh I would be cross.. I wouldnt be asking her to babysit again for a long while! hope you get some rest and feel better soon x

  14. Ugh. So hard when you have to rely on in-laws to help out...and they do a lousy job. My anxiety levels would go through the roof too!
    Hope things get better for you x

  15. As a dad I can only help with what I've seen (not felt). The thing we tried to remember is that some people who had had their kids a long time ago had forgotten how hard it was and how valuable a bit of sleep was.

  16. what a tough situation! sending you some sprinkles!

  17. It's very tricky to manage these sort of situations, I would also find it very stressful. Could you get hubby to have a word? could be done in a light heartened way to avoid confrontation.
    Hope you manage to resolve things soon.
    new follower via FYBF

  18. How frustrating for you, nothing worse than an over-stimulated, over-tired bub to try to settle :( I agree with the suggestion above to perhaps try and time bub's awake time with him being looked after by others - I know it's not always possible but hopefully at least then you'll be able to have the quiet time when bub is sleeping when you return home and baby-sitters have left. I hope you don't have a repeat situation x

  19. Hang in there sweetie, things will get better. Anyone who said having a baby was easy lies! Most important thing to remember is that you are the boss, you make decisions and you shouldn't feel bad letting people know that. If you can get some sleep you will feel much better. Big hugs to you for the week ahead. X

  20. You poor thing. I think most of us have been there and have a lot of empathy for you. Just wait until you tell the grandparents you don't want them to eat sweets and then find out that they have been sneaking them 'tastes' since 3 months old! I just put it down to absolute adoring love that only a grandparent can have for a child.

  21. If they are coming over to 'help' then they should help you not help themselves......let them know you've made other arrangements next time and tell them why so they know they will miss out in the end......
    Start out how you mean to go on......if they push you around over something this important (because they know you are struggling and need the routine) then they will always do exactly as they please.
    The most important thing is that you and hubby are on the same page with whatever decisions you make......
    If they're anything like my in-laws they will honestly think they don't have to listen to a word you say. Lucky hubby and I have formed a united front. I sincerely hope you have some luck negotiating this tricky situation......

    By the way, it's soooooooooo hard sometimes with a young baby especially when everyone else seems to be having a better time of it......

    Tania xx


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