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Dear Helen, I have a problem with my husband's mother. She is truly experienced, with 4 children and 3 grandchildren. But she thinks everything I do with my baby is wrong and humiliates my role as a mother by not consulting me about anything regarding my baby. I do not want this to affect my marriage, but I'm starting to lose my patience and I do not know what to do anymore.
Moms' answer:
Clearly, but firmly, let her know that such behavior is not acceptable and that you want her to consult you regarding anything that concerns the baby. Since she is your husband’s mother, it's important that you have his support in it, so you should first talk to him. The sense of parental competence is one of the most important factors affecting the experience of parenting, which again affects the parenting practice itself. A mother who feels competent is a patient, calm and happy mother, and that is what a child needs. It is possible that this is the case of a generation gap issue - the older generation does not believe in the "modern way of raising a child", and the younger are mocking the old. It could also be the need of your mother-in-law to express her ability as capable and "to justify" her role and her great experience. Regardless of whether it is something mentioned or perhaps something else, I recommend open and sincere communication. You both should be calm, kind and clearly and openly talk about how you feel in your roles, how you feel about certain procedures, what are your responsibilities, what are your mutual expectations regarding baby care and how to find a compromising solution that is of mutual satisfaction. Make sure that you properly distribute family roles and remember who the parents are and who the grandparents are. Make sure you have a constructive and open discussion that will take into account the feelings and expectations of everyone involved, as well as the welfare of your child.
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