I just need to vent!
My FIL watches DD during the day while I work P/T and DH is F/T, has been doing so since she was 6mos, she's now 10mos. She has dairy issues, so plain and simple - she gets no dairy. I've also found she does really well eating a mainly vegetarian diet and so all the stuff I make is geared towards that, with the exception of eggs some mornings. For the past 3 days (well, minus the weekend), MIL has been at the house too. She and I do NOT see eye to eye and have been butting heads since DD was born. She raised her kids on meat, potatoes, and more meat, topped with a heavy serving of dairy and they've got major digestive issues and food allergies as a result. Anywho, for the past 3 days, everytime I come home to DD, I nurse her and not 20mins later she's spitting up everywhere. Totally not like her - unless she eats something that doesn't agree. I know it's not me, I'm pretty careful with my diet. I couldn't figure it out until tonight. The smell coming off that little pile of vomit was horrendous, like curddled rotten....it just stunk! So I opened the fridge and there I see it, a container of mystery blended mush. I made DH smell it since I figured it's his mother, he would know what she makes. He said minestrone, and called to confirm - yep, with butter and greasy ground beef! Awesome. I'm ready to freak out if she doesn't stop. It's as though she assumes I can't cook bc none of the food I feed our LO isn't anything she herself would eat. That and I really don't do purees as she doesn't care for them, she prefers things she can pick up so we do finger foods for her.
My solution? Since DH won't say anything to her without arguing and then turning on me about what we're feeding DD, I'm going to be taping a list to the fridge of acceptable foods and making sure to specifically state which ones she is to be fed each day. Rediculous that I have to go to these lengths to keep my child healthy, and when she is up all night long with an upset tummy wanting to nurse every 3hrs to soothe herself, who has to get up with her and lose sleep? Me! And rant complete, thanks for listening :-)
So they're at your house? Do you keep dairy and meat items around or are they bringing food? If they are intentionally bringing food that you've told them makes her sick, then I guess you do need to find other care. I'd give it one more time of telling them very explicitly that she got sick and she absolutely can't have those foods, and see what happens.
Yes, I'd detail her symptoms and have a serious discussion about her needs. Remind them that this isn't about you - it's about your child and what works best for her (though it's possible your IL's won't believe you - I've found a lot of dietary differences persist since people believe their way is most right.)
Yes - this is frequently the kind of issue that can be solved by paying someone else for childcare who will actually follow your instructions. You might want to start thinking about how/whether you can do that instead. It will make a difference (as you've obviously seen) in your child's health and your own peace of mind about the food issues.
Thanks. Daycare isn't an option, we're lucky enough that my FIL is retired and willing to drive the 30mins to our house to watch DD. DH works 2 jobs and I left my full time job with crazy hours to work p/t so that I can spend time raising DD and any future kiddos before I decide if I'll return full time. And really my FIL isn't the big issue (I think he knows I mean business bc I don't put up with crap) it's more the random days that my MIL comes along. Thankfully she still works full time with no retirement in the immediate future. My mother plans to retire within the next 5yrs and she would become our main childcare at that point. She really wishes she could retire now though! So for now, I just need to reiterate to DH that his mother needs constant reminding about what constitues dairy and that there is a reason why there is none in our home.
I would set up meals and snacks for DD for the day, label everything and tell them that that is the ONLY food she can have. She is not to get anything else, she does not need anything else, and if they offer it and she chooses not to eat it, then she'll just be hungry. (I know you wouldn't do that if she really were fussy about something, but unfortunately it seems that all the older generation family members in our family find common ground in that kind of attitude, so they tend to comply more readily than if they just think we're completely wacky.)
Sadly, I had to do this with my own parents (who I love and respect and seem to respect me, except when it comes to certain child-rearing things... They try, but they can't help themselves sometimes.) I would call them EVERY TIME I "caught" them, b/c it was so obvious. I'd say, "You gave him grapes, didn't you?" There'd be silence on the other end of the phone or a guilty look and then, "Why? What happened?" And I'd tell them his diaper was a mess (or he'd puked), it was obvious what he'd eaten b/c he couldn't digest it properly (LIKE I TOLD THEM HE COULDN'T), and that thanks to them, he didn't nap/sleep through the night due to his discomfort and I didn't get enough rest myself and now we're both cranky thankyouverymuch. After getting reamed out a bunch of times, they finally got the hint. Or at least got tired of me complaining to them about how tired I was and could they just come down and help me out since I'm SOOOO tired. (But I wouldn't leave them alone with him to allow them to feed him whatever they wanted. They'd never do it in front of me. And driving down here was a pain in the neck, so they only did it if I needed them to b/c I had to go somewhere.)
You said your MIL is the problem ? What about FIL ? Could you try to pull him aside and tell him in a reasonable way , why you have an issue with the food MIL gives baby and that it´s not , because you are some crazy food extremist , but you are doing , what you are doing , because your daughter has REAL problems with what she feeds her ?
after 3 cs Happily single Mom
I had a similar issue with my sil watching my son. I am vegetarian and I don't believe that cow's milk is good for a child to drink day in and day out. I have my husband mostly convinced (he still eats meat, and feeds it to ds very rarely). When my sil had ds she would tell my husband "You feed him too much fruit. That's not good for a toddler" and "I don't think he's getting enough calcium". She would then proceed to feed him hot dogs and give him milk the whole time she watched him, even though we asked her not to. Luckily it doesn't mess with my son's system too much, but whether it makes him obviously sick or not was not the point. The best solution we found is to have sil not watch ds anymore. Good luck with your in-laws!
Nearly crunchy mama to one DS born at home 12/09 and married to my best friend one week later
I thought babies weren't supposed to have cow milk products until after age one? And why would anyone feed minestrone to a 10 month old baby? Maybe you could just show her a page from a mainstream, free baby magazine or something. Or sign her up to get the issues of Babytalk. These are not kooky ideas, this is normal food safety.
Well she just turned a year last week and today we had a visit with a Naturopath who did some testing and confirmed my suspicions - she's sensitive, (fairly highly, but not allergic) to dairy and of all things, oats. The oats we had a scare before a long drive to SC when she ate some and was covered head to toe with a nasty rash for about 24hrs. It was a great appt, over an hr discussing her entire medical history and based on how she's thriving, it's safe to say she's not allergic, just sensitive, and will *fingers crossed* hopefully outgrow the oat sensitivity by 18mos and the dairy shortly after. She's on 3 gut healing/yeast killing supplements (probiotics, biotin and mycotin) with instuctions to avoid grains until she's retested to be sure her intestines get a break and heal and obv no dairy. She also had a pretty bad reaction to her DTAP and Hib (we stopped at the 4mo) and is on a homeopathic cleanse for those as the Hib most likely triggered her allergy to begin with. So I am super happy that I did this now and didn't wait until her issues were bigger. Dr says she has high hopes for a FULL recovery for both sensitivities, and now that I have a 'diagnosis' I have better backing for the inlaws in terms of keeping them to a stict diet for DD. My MIL was really pushing me for a bit and I flipped out while they were here.
On a side note I did learn from my sister that MY mother was talking behind my back about me being too restrictive with feeding DD and something about I was making it too difficult for her to 'be a kid'. She would never in a million years feed something to DD that I didn't approve but it bothered me she would talk like that so I have to prepare a nice conversation with her (I just found out last night). It's sad that people want me to explain myself and how I raise my daughter!
But family issues aside, DD is doing fabulous and I look forward to the day I can take her out for a nice sundae :-)