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  1. #1
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    Default Newborn & MIL help

    Hi lovely people, I am in need of some advice.

    I am in the third trimester of my first pregnancy and have started discussing labour and the first weeks at home with my DF.

    My MIL and Grandparent's in law are planning on visiting as soon as she is born and staying in the house with DF and myself (we have a small 3 bed house, where the GP's will stay in the study and MIL in the lounge room) - I completely understand that they are excited as this will be their first grandbaby. My main concern is that I wanted a week or two alone with DF and our new baby, as this is our first child and we will be a new family.

    I will also be breastfeeding and do not want to be cooped up in a room alone while the family is there, especially while I am learning and finding my feet, and there is nowhere to send them as we are the only family in town so no breaks. I am not a prude, but don't feel very comfortable having my breasts out in front of everyone, even more so after all the fun stretchmarks I have earned throughout pregnancy! My MIL will be sleeping on the couch, so even during night time feeds I will be restricted to my bedroom or the nursery.

    I also don't want to be judged or have criticism thrown my way when I am learning to look after my new baby - my MIL is very 'my way is the only way' and we haven't had the greatest relationship. When you would already be doubting yourself, having someone throwing their opinion would make it a lot harder. When I have disagreed with my MIL in the past, she has taken it very poorly and acted as if I have insulted her, even if I have just said I prefer a blue pot over a purple one - so politely telling her to please let me be is not really an option.

    My hormones during my pregnancy have also been so up and down, so I am quite concerned about the post baby blues hitting me hard - which I would prefer to deal with alone with DF and not with his family looking on and wondering why I am being moody.

    Now, my problem is that I have tried to discuss my issues with the MIL and GPIL staying with us immediately after our baby is born with DF, but he seems to just be brushing it off and telling me not to worry, we won't even notice they are here, etc. I need advise on how to discuss my concerns with DF without sounding like I am complaining and *****ing about his family - I am just so set on having OUR family time before everyone is visiting none stop. I understand I will have to learn to compromise, but this I don't think I could. I want to just yell and say I'VE HAD THIS BABY IN MY BELLY FOR NINE MONTHS GIVE ME A F***ING WEEK!!! This is already causing anxiety for me and I don't want the added stress ontop of your usual worries as a FTM.

    Also - how would you broach the subject with your MIL and GPIL???

    Any advise is greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Oh god I got stressed out just reading this, sounds like my worst nightmare
    I need a lot of space and privacy so this situation would cause me to meltdown. I definitely would not have wanted visitors staying with a newborn. And you should be shouting give me that effing week! You deserve it.
    Will they all have their whooping cough vax up to date?
    The feelings and anxieties you're having are real and your df should not dismiss them. Bringing home your first baby is stressful and special and navigating breastfeeding was super hard for me and you will have to feed a lot so you will be tucked away a lot.
    Is there nowhere else they could stay? Like a hotel or something? Surely they would understand you'd like some time to bond as a new family? But this is a conversation your df needs to have with them.
    Or don't tell them until baby is already a week old
    Or when baby is born tell them that it was really rough and you're exhausted and it would be best if they waited a week or two so you can get back on your feet.
    Or failing all that maybe you and the baby could go stay in a hotel? (Just kidding!).
    I'm not sure the best solution besides giving your df a reality check and getting him to respect your feelings and privacy and sort this out with his family. Good luck I hope you get what you want out of this!!

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  4. #3
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    Hmm. I wouldn't be wanting anyone to stay, let alone 3 people.
    Points to bring up:
    - you're likely to be in pain, exhausted and extra hormonal (don't let him minimise this, it's a huge issue). Other people are going to add to your anxiety and cause greater stress.
    - having guests increases the work load around the house. Everyone says they'll come and help. In practice it very rarely happens. See point one in regards to how well this will go down
    - having guests will interfere with bonding time for both of you and bub.
    - more people = more germs, newborns don't have the greatest immune systems yet.
    - it is important for your mental health to be comfortable in your own home.

    If he doesn't understand any of those points I'd reinforce it with the fact that you're likely to have all of these things for several weeks, and you refuse to filter your thoughts towards anyone in the house and you don't care if it upsets people.

    Your partner should be bringing it up with his family. However, if he refuses to do so, I'd say that "your son is too afraid to tell you, but" you're not having any house guests for 2 weeks after bub is born. You're happy for short day visits, but as your MIL likely understands, you want to make sure that everything is going smoothly before having people stay in your home. However, if she'd like to come before that point, there are a few local accommodation options that they could utilise while you adjust, recover and learn to breastfeed.

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  6. #4
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    I would tey to get DH on board so you can present a united front and info them there will be no overnite guests for at least the first month. Can they arrange other accommodation and perhaps come over duri g the day during times that suit you? I simply could not have handled overnite guests. What if you are up all night with a crying baby? Thay first month is pretty hectic, especially breastfeeding which was pretty much constant day and night.

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    Agree with previous posts. This sounds awful.
    I would say to your DH that it will be great to see your inlaws - after you've settled at home and find your feet.
    You're not sure how you'll recover from birth. How you'll get through those first days of the blues. This is an important time for you and your DH and your baby.

    Three people visiting and staying is too much. Way too much. That's not helpful. It's painful. No matter how well you get along with them.

    I would tell your DH that it's not what you want or need immediately after your bub is born and to compromise offer a timeframe when they can visit - that may need to be worked out after bub has arrived.

    You don't need to raise this with your MIL. That is up to your DH. If he won't then you need someone on your side. Are your parents around? Can you speak to your mum and ask her to intervene - one excited grandparent to another. To give you space and time to settle.

    A week or two is perfectly reasonable to want it to be just you.

    I feel like you need someone in your corner on this one and if it's not your DH, it needs to be someone else. Your own mum or a trusted female relation. And if that's not possible, then your Obstetrician, or midwife or GP.

    When I first had DS, the Domiciliary widwife visited for the first two weeks. She was a godsend for different reasons and was a great support to both DH and I. And I have no doubt that if someone was painful, and it upset me, she would have stood up.

    You are not complaining or whinging about his family. Being clear on your needs is not selfish. Insisting that you ignore your own needs for someone else's is selfish.

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    Take it from someone who could have wrote this exact post... just have the conversation! Voice your preferences and don't settle for anything that will cause you stress and make you uncomfortable.

    My MIL came to stay and gave us an indefinite time frame of her stay. We were in a one bedder apartment and she slept on a blow up air bed in the living room. Sure it was great that I didn't have to worry about cooking, but my partner was torn trying to juggle looking after me (with the blues) and making sure her mother was ok and that there weren't any arguments. (MIL got under my skin a lot with her old school European advice). I was so upset that I couldn't just process and deal with things in the privacy of my own home, and had to have my DP's attention divided between me, her mum and our daughter. DP now admits it wasn't the best situation for our family in the first few weeks. She also says she felt she didn't get much initial bonding time with our DD.

    I also longed for that special bonding time as a family of 3. I really needed DP's closeness as I had a pretty traumatic birth, and feel I was somewhat alone to process it all.

    Your health is going to be the biggest thing to look after during this time. If that is in threat in any way, you need to address it. Hopefully they are reasonable with you saying you don't want people to be staying until a few weeks after the birth. And if you offend them, I can guarantee it's easier to deal with that than the possible scenario of being so vulnerable and needing your own space and not getting it.

    Wishing you luck! I know exactly how you're feeling x

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    Just tell him nobody can visit until the first vaccinations. And stress that they all need to have their boosters before visiting.

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    Thank you so much everyone - glad to see that I am not being unreasonable.

    I will definitely bring up the whooping cough vaccination, I just read an article by ABC that says it goes in a 3-4 year cycle, so this year the cases are expected to rise significantly again.

    Unfortunately having them stay else where can't really be an option, they would all be very offended if it were even mentioned. I will have to take the highroad on that one. A hotel for bub and myself sounds lovely - room service, fresh linen, YES PLEASE!! On the bright side, MIL is a clean freak who in the past has stayed at our house for a holiday and washed all my clothes (she even folded my G-strings haha) and rearranged cupboards, so the house getting dirty isn't a worry, the only problem is that she criticises my cleaning while doing these things .

    My mum lives in another state and I don't have any siblings here to be on my side unfortunately - I have a case load midwife so she will be visiting almost daily for the first 2 weeks, so I think she would be able to help. I feel that I really need DF on my side to get the point across, I don't know how I would cope battling with this myself.

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    Oh wow this is my worst nightmare!! The first week after getting home from hospital with your first newborn is a crazy adjustment. Your world is about to be turned up side down and there is so much to take in. Houseguests ( that aren't even your family) would interfere with your bonding time and recovery.

    I think a big discussion with your DF is in order. Tiny Dancer made some great points I'd bring those up and genuinely tell him how stressed it is making you.

    Basically I would not take no for an answer from your DF. In laws coming to stay when you are sleep deprived and hormonal is a recipe for disaster!

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    @TandR that's horrible that you didn't get your time alone with DD and your DP. I am worried that my DF and our new baby will not get a chance to bond properly before he heads back to work, as he only has a few weeks at home. It does make it harder when they are in the lounge room opposed to a separate room, because they are so in your face!

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