Grandparent bathing with LO?? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm curious how you feel about about a grandparent of the same gender as your LO bathing with them without asking about it first, or in general...

 

DD was being watched by MIL (we live together) and we said if she wanted to she could give DD a bath since it would be around bedtime. Apparently she took a bath with DD, which bothered me a little bit but I couldn't put a finger on why exactly... DH felt like it was weird but again couldn't place why...I'm not really concerned about it but I was surprised. If she had asked if it was alright I feel like I would have said no....but I can't think of why I would say it, just a feeling I guess. I'm not concerned about MIL doing anything inappropriate with DD....it just seems weird to me...

 

So thoughts? I take baths with DD but it's different obviously...I'm not even upset about it..It's just got me mulling it over now.

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#2 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 07:49 PM
 
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Unless the MIL (or mom, or whomever the grandparent is) was already in question, if I felt creepy about them or had other reason not to trust them, I'd be fine with it, myself. Especially if you live together! I suppose there's an upper age limit on this, but with a baby or toddler, I wouldn't feel weird about it. Obviously it's a personal call though


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#3 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 09:19 PM
 
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You felt weird about it because it IS weird!

Bathing with your own child, who you carried for nine months in your body, and who then emerged from your body into the world....that is just natural. That child bathing with her father is equally normal. You created that child together. Bathing with someone else's child, no matter how close the relationship, is just....icky. It crosses boundaries.

 

For perspective, my SO and I have been together since ds was 1 year old, so at this point most of ds' life, yet he was never as eager/comfortable to shower/bathe with ds for a long time. With dd, he was in the tub with her within days of her birth. Even though he loves ds, and they are close, and ds would happily hop in the shower with either parent, it wasn't within SO's comfort zone for a long time, even after other aspects of their relationship were on par with any other father/son.  Now he is beginning to feel uncomfortable having our verbal, inquisitive dd in there with him. And we are the *parents* and we have these boundaries.

 

I would find it very bizarre that someone who did not play a direct role in producing this child feels the need to get naked and sit around in the tub together. Waaaay too close for my comfort.


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#4 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 10:26 PM
 
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I don't know - it wouldn't bother me unless I already had weird feelings about the person.
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#5 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 10:51 PM
 
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I have memories of showering with my grandma even as old as 6ish.  nothing weird about it for us.. we both needed to bathe and I was spending the weekend with her so it was just more time where we could talk, plus I loved all her scented body washes and stuff.  She is a huge avon and bath and body fan so it was fascinating to me as a kid since my mom only bought the cheapest stuff she could get.  It was fun to talk to grandma about all her different body washes and trying them all out.

 

Now, it would REALLY bother me if my MIL bathed with my daughter, but that is because I just don't like her.  Plus, I doubt she has the physical ability anyway hehe.

 

If my mom did it, I'd think it was weird but only because she hasn't yet.  Normally she plays with my 2 year old from outside of the tub.  she loves giving her baths and my daughter loves grandma bath time.  it wouldn't bother me if they decided to bathe together beyond the strangeness of it having not happened before.

 

It really has to do with the person I think.  My MIL?  No, my mom sure but it would be weird since she hadn't before, my grandma and me?  I have fond memories and nothing inappropriate in the least. :)

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#6 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 11:00 PM
 
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I wouldn't feel weird about it unless I had some reason to feel weird about the person and if I had some reason to feel weird about the person in that way, they wouldn't be alone with my child.

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#7 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 11:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waiting2bemommy View Post

You felt weird about it because it IS weird!


Um, not in most countries in the world. I find it sad that extended family are not so present in most of our lives, and I also find it sad that nudity is such a trigger for folks. Whole families bathe together in Japan, for just one example. There's nothing weird about it. It is normal, healthy, and matter-of-fact.


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#8 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 11:17 PM
 
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I walked in on my mama taking a bath with my 4yo dd last year.  My mom has been my best friend all my life.  She is the sweetest, kindest woman you will ever meet.  When I walked in I still felt a tinge of weirdness.  I didn't have a problem with it, just felt that odd feeling in the background.  I think it's because it is such an intimate thing, bathing with someone, no matter how innocent.  I'm not sure how I would feel about my mil.  I don't have any worries about her at all.  Probably would be odd, I guess. LOL


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#9 of 29 Old 05-14-2011, 11:17 PM
 
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I would feel weird.  

 

One of my most uncomfortable memories was my grandmother getting in the tub with me when I was little.  I always try to remember why exactly it was so bad... like maybe something happened that I blocked out of my memory, but I can't think of anything.  It was just a very creepy memory for me.  I think I was about four years old.  

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#10 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 05:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillitu View Post




Um, not in most countries in the world. I find it sad that extended family are not so present in most of our lives, and I also find it sad that nudity is such a trigger for folks. Whole families bathe together in Japan, for just one example. There's nothing weird about it. It is normal, healthy, and matter-of-fact.



Yeah I was thinking about this too. A lot of places in the world families bath together, then there is that whole "well we are here" argument. 

I didn't think it was horrible or anything, just weird....I'm not upset about it at all just curious because I hadn't ever thought of anyone besides myself or DH bathing with DD. Didn't even cross my radar until yesterday actually. It is funny though, I'd be less weirded out by it if it was my own mother than MIL...Then again I am not the hugest fan of MIL so that probably plays into it.

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#11 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 05:44 AM
 
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IF I liked the grandparent, then I would not have a problem with it. I take baths with my babies. I have no problem with certain people (my own sisters, my own daughter) taking baths with them. But, I would not allow the grandparents because I do not like them. I won't even allow them to supervise the children at a pool because my dad cannot concentrate and wanders off all the time (dementia) and my MIL just is a drunk who thinks children do not need to be supervised in the pool or water.

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#12 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 05:46 AM
 
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I think it would be more weird if you did not do it yourself. But I take baths with my little ones. Not preschool age though. I do with my 1 yr old. But I know I have never taken a bath with a 3 yr old. The way the 1 yr old ends up in the bath is if I attempt a bath...he is the one joining me. I never get a bath alone...or hot it seems. But a 3 or 4 yr old..I would not really get that. They are old enough to understand that it is mommy's turn. And they probably won't need me to hold them so they don't fall over like a baby would. 

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#13 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 07:10 AM
 
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I take baths with DD (the vast majority of our baths are shared, and always have been). My mom has taken some baths with DD, but I was the one to actually offer. I would be fine with mom or MIL taking a bath with DD (well, she's 5 now, so she absolutely would be asked first too) but yeah, I'd want them to discuss it first. It WOULD be weird to me if MIL took a bath for the first time with DD without discussing it prior (though I know she would not). And if my mother hadn't already done it with my permission, it WOULD be weird there too. Not necessarily "call CPS" weird but at least annoying.

 

W2BM, your mother taking a bath with your kids WOULD be out of line, you're right on that and I'm sorry to say it. Such a thing is not always ok. But it can be ok. The PP who remembered a bath with grandma at age 4, I am thinking that was probably a first time (or first time in a long time) for it to stand out like that. I think that would matter. Plus a 4 year old should be consulted before bathing with someone new. So it all depends - is the kid used to bathing with anyone, period? What is the relationship like? Was the kid consulted, if they are verbal enough?


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#14 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 07:32 AM
 
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Hmmm

 

Well If my Dad, Step Mom, MIL, or FIL did this I would think it was weird.  Partly because it would be very out of character for any one of them to chose to do that. So that would definitely be wierd.

 

But my mom has a big 2 person whirlpool bath and I wouldn't think it was weird if She and DD took a bath in it together. Heck My Mom and I sometimes do that! Plus we go to bath houses together (where we live, it's a Korean bath house, but I've also been to Japanese ones) where it is the norm for families and friends to go for a relaxing steam, sauna, hot tub etc (these are single gender not co ed). I'm looking forward to when DD is old enough to go to the bathhouse. It'll be a right of passage into young womanhood.

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#15 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 08:10 AM
 
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My mom takes baths with my DS (2 y) all the time. When we are with my brother's family, she will bathe both grandkids (girl + DS) together. I have never  even thought about the possibility it was weird....I took lots of showers with my extended family (aunts, cousins, etc) even when I was up to 8-10. I love it when my mom bathes DS--it's the only time I don't bathe with him!!

 

I would only have a problem with it if I didn't trust the adult bathing with the child....

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#16 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 08:50 AM
 
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I would feel weird about it but thats because it would be out of the norm for my mom to do that, as well as I don't think MIL would do something like that either. But I also don't bathe with DD myself so if anybody else did it, it just would be weird to me. 

 

 

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#17 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 11:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waiting2bemommy View Post

You felt weird about it because it IS weird!

Bathing with your own child, who you carried for nine months in your body, and who then emerged from your body into the world....that is just natural. That child bathing with her father is equally normal. You created that child together. Bathing with someone else's child, no matter how close the relationship, is just....icky. It crosses boundaries.

 

For perspective, my SO and I have been together since ds was 1 year old, so at this point most of ds' life, yet he was never as eager/comfortable to shower/bathe with ds for a long time. With dd, he was in the tub with her within days of her birth. Even though he loves ds, and they are close, and ds would happily hop in the shower with either parent, it wasn't within SO's comfort zone for a long time, even after other aspects of their relationship were on par with any other father/son.  Now he is beginning to feel uncomfortable having our verbal, inquisitive dd in there with him. And we are the *parents* and we have these boundaries.

 

I would find it very bizarre that someone who did not play a direct role in producing this child feels the need to get naked and sit around in the tub together. Waaaay too close for my comfort.


I don't really understand the idea that biology is what makes this "weird" or "not weird." Would it be weird for an adoptive mother or father to bathe with their young child? What about a non-biological parent in a same-sex relationship? What about a grandmother who is the primary caregiver of a young child? Does it make a difference if the child's bio parents are out of the picture or not? None of these people "made" the child, but I'm not sure that it would be out of bounds for them to bathe with the child. 

 

I think whether or not one finds this weird will depend on other cultural factors--as others have mentioned, there are plenty of cultures in which intergenerational bathing is completely normal. 

 

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#18 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 12:02 PM - Thread Starter
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I don't really understand the idea that biology is what makes this "weird" or "not weird." Would it be weird for an adoptive mother or father to bathe with their young child? What about a non-biological parent in a same-sex relationship? What about a grandmother who is the primary caregiver of a young child? Does it make a difference if the child's bio parents are out of the picture or not? None of these people "made" the child, but I'm not sure that it would be out of bounds for them to bathe with the child. 

 

I think whether or not one finds this weird will depend on other cultural factors--as others have mentioned, there are plenty of cultures in which intergenerational bathing is completely normal. 

 

I completely avoided the "I carried this baby for 9 months so its not weird when I do it" because I was thinking specifically about adoptive parents...hadn't even thought about grandparent caregivers..giving birth isn't the only way to be a parent for sure.
 

 

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#19 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 12:31 PM
 
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i don't think it would be weird but i grew up with nudity as not a big deal.


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#20 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 03:09 PM
 
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I would think it's weird if it was someone that didn't live in the house. If it's a close relative that lives in the house & acts as a caregiver for the child, I don't think it's weird...

So, given that none of DS's grandparents live with us or have even spent 5 minutes alone with him, yes, I'd be horribly uncomfortable with it, but I can imagine certain circumstances with certain grandparents (as in, not DS's!!) where it might not be weird.

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#21 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 03:22 PM
 
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Wouldn't bother me (my mom has showered with a kid of mine before) but what matters is that it bothered you.  In that case, I'd politely mention to her that you are not cool with it. 


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#22 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 03:23 PM
 
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Ew.  Weird.

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#23 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Wouldn't bother me (my mom has showered with a kid of mine before) but what matters is that it bothered you.  In that case, I'd politely mention to her that you are not cool with it. 


 

honestly I thought it was weird...kind of annoyed she didn't ask me first but did it really bother me? not enough to make a stink about it. Things have been going well with MIL and I want to keep it that way. If DH isn't bothered enough to say something I'm going to let it go. The simple solution is just not give her the chance to give Della a bath, which isn't a problem if I mention that she is already clean when she watches her...Non problem solved.

 

I do love the range of responses though because I some people IRL who would absolutely flip out about this kinda thing.

 

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#24 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 03:36 PM
 
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I would have freaked out 100%.  I know that in many families and many cultures it'd be fine, but all I can say is, it wouldn't be okay with me.  Nope.


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#25 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 03:37 PM
 
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I don't necessarily think it's weird.  My son is very close to my mom and it wouldn't bother me (up to a certain age, he's 2 now so probably for not much longer).  The only other person that babysits him is my closest friend and it wouldn't bother me if she said she took a bath with him either.  I trust both of these people and my son is still a toddler.  And he ALWAYS wants me to get in the tub with him (and I do sometimes) so it wouldn't surprise me if he needed a bath and wanted Grandma or his 'aunt' to join him!


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#26 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 04:51 PM
 
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I wouldnt like it but thats just me. My brother did take a shower with my ds when he was around 2 months old but that was cause I was busy and he was trying to keep him happy for 20 minutes for me. I take showers with my kids pretty much every other day but I dont think I would like it if anyone besidew myself or DH took a bath/shower with them.


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#27 of 29 Old 05-15-2011, 04:56 PM
 
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Doesn't bother me, ds showers with my mom, dad, sister, me - whoever is in the shower he has to jump in!   I live with my parents though and my sister spends a lot of time with us.   He is not at all hung up on being naked, like I was when I was a kid.  

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#28 of 29 Old 05-16-2011, 06:30 AM - Thread Starter
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my cousins and I all used to be bath together at sleepovers or whatever, when we were little. I have the cutest pic of my cousin and I we are covered up to our chin in bubbles in our grandparents jacuzzi tub! So cute...I even used to bath with my boy cousins...Gasp!

 

Now that I think about it, I wonder how I would have felt if my aunt had jumped in the tub with us when we were doing bathtime...probably as a kid it wouldn't phase me a bit, as a mother though I'd be like "wow you all fit in there?!"

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#29 of 29 Old 05-16-2011, 08:06 AM
 
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Sounds fine to me actually. As long as the kid wasnt upset.

 

 

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