{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "My MIL has made remarks to my husband that she doesn’t understand why we need a nanny for our infant since I am able to WFH (I’m a biglaw associate). She also doesn’t get why we have a cleaner and dog walker and seems to imply we’re wasting our money by outsourcing funds on things we can do. She was a SAHM so I guess I understand why she feels that way, but how do I explain to her why these things are necessary? I actually love my MIL but this is driving me nuts.", "post_id": "6195265148bd4d002e41db4c", "reply_count": 51, "vote_count": 13, "bowl_id": "5a0c9a1f61b01a001937c406", "bowl_name": "Working Moms" }

My MIL has made remarks to my husband that she doesn’t understand why we need a nanny for our infant since I am able to WFH (I’m a biglaw associate). She also doesn’t get why we have a cleaner and dog walker and seems to imply we’re wasting our money by outsourcing funds on things we can do. She was a SAHM so I guess I understand why she feels that way, but how do I explain to her why these things are necessary? I actually love my MIL but this is driving me nuts.

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Others have made similar comments. An explanation that seems to make sense to people is: Your work requires the same amount of time and attention whether you do it at an office away from your home or at your office within your home. Nobody seems to question the need for childcare when you work outside the home, but the fact that you are physically present doesn’t affect the need for childcare. You cannot give proper attention to both without both suffering. Regarding the cleaner and dog walker, an educated guess is that these are luxuries that you choose to pay for because you recognize the competing demands for your time and you can afford to pay for those services in order to create more time for your family, self-care, and general non-work time. Those tasks take up a lot of time and with both spouses working full-time (and demanding jobs at that!), there is less remaining time and energy and therefore, those tasks become much more of a burden than they would otherwise, so for the sake of everyone being happier, you outsource. Ultimately though, she doesn’t have to agree or accept things, but I understand how it could become grating. Your husband can also tell her she doesn’t need to approve and while he values her opinion and experience, that is your joint decision and he would appreciate if she would stop commenting on it. He needs to set boundaries.

likehelpfuluplifting

This but also that baby is only a baby once. You are already at work most of the day. The few hours you get to spend with baby while they are awake, should be fulfilling! Not just running around cooking, cleaning, dog walking with baby strapped on. That's what you are paying for - Once in a lifetime Quality Time with your baby 🐣

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My working mom and SAHM grandma day stuff like this. It's also common when people hear WFH. Just like most people don't understand what SAHMs do all day. This is why working mommy and SAHM mommys don't coexist. You don't need her approval or blessing. You don't need to justify to anyone anything. Any time you save on chores, should be spent with baby or on sleep / self care. Running yourself to the ground is overrated. Keep the maid, the dog walker, the meal plan and the nanny - so you can focus on your career, your baby, and your health. You didn't work this hard and get into Big Law for nothing.

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I didn't make it up. I was a newlywed no kids visiting a friend in Dallas and this was her story. I'm not in a mommy group now, so I don't know any different. 🤷🏻‍♀️ Again, for repetition sake, it's not friends, its an official mommy group. Official.

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If she’s comparing being a SAHM to being a big law associate working from home I don’t think she has the mental bandwidth to understand any explanation you provide her.

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Omg this.

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You dont owe her any explanation, but if you want to say anything, you could discuss how 1) having a nanny, cleaner, and dog walker gives you more energy to actually devote to your family, rather than just being stressed all the time and 2) you can't both adequately do your job and watch your child at once; you would have to neglect one and probably end up neglecting both. And at least having a nanny means you still get to see and parent your child. In fact, my firm policy is that you have to also have child care if you are working from home. You can't do both.

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Being a SAHM is a job. Working at a law firm is a job. You can’t have two full time jobs. Plus many of the daily mom tasks don’t go away just because you’re also a lawyer (doctor appointments, buying clothes, meal planning, planning birthday parties). So what did your husband say when your MIL made those comments?

likehelpful

So many people discount "brain work," as work, children require engagement, so you are assigning the appropriate value to your LOs development. Since your career is also important to you, you're seeking support in the form of a care provider. MiL needs to stay in her lane and I too want to know your husband's response. It should be on him to respond (initially,) to her comments. If you are a person who stews on stuff and will continue to be annoyed (like me,) I'd address it with him, if you haven't and let him lead the conversation with his mom.

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In general I find that when my MIL makes a comment like that it’s in a lot of ways a chance to validate the choices she made as a mother, especially when they are different than the choices my husband and I make. Her problem, not mine 🤷🏼‍♀️

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100%

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Don’t charge it to SAHM. Charge it to meddlesome. Mine has been an accountant with her own office for nearly 40 years and is still just as notoriously meddlesome and rude🙄 Then she acts like she has amnesia when my husband tries to call her out on it

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Seriously, what is it with MILs and amnesia when their behavior is brought up?

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It’s none of her business. Thank you for your opinion but I am ok with how things are functioning with my current set up. She doesn’t have to understand and also she can’t understand if she was a SAHM and didn’t work in big law — she has no frame of reference. From experience, and I’ve been married for almost 15 years and have a good relationship with my MIL, often MILs are competitive at least in the beginning. She’s trying to claim her territory - it’s her son, it’s her grandchild, she knows what she’s doing, she does it better than you. Ignore! It’s likely not personal.

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It’s physically, emotionally and mentally impossible to do all that (well) at once. Sure, you could manage for a period of time, but not indefinitely and not without completely burning yourself out. Infants grow into toddlers and that’s a whole new level. Your work requires periods of deep concentration and availability for clients…maybe things would be different if your job had a task list you could manage in spurts as you have time. Solidarity!

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I came back to say maybe things wouldn’t be different if you had a different type of job. I’d personally still have childcare if I won the lottery. So, you do you!!!

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Imagine telling a SAHM that they should find a full-time job nights and weekends to contribute financially to the household……. Obviously some have to do just that to make ends meet but it isn’t something you would recommend.

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Kindly ignore your MIL. Keep doing what you need to keep you and your family healthy and happy. Times have changed since she was a SAHM so there’s absolutely no comparison to the challenges YOU are facing today as a WORKING mom.

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‘Caring for the baby is a full time job during the day. I also have an external full time job. Thus, I need childcare. We enjoy hiring out other help around the house.’ She does get it. She’s just being a PITA and pushing her opinion/her style on to you. She shouldn’t have an opinion on who walks your dog or who scrubs your toilets. It’s none of her business. Her implying anything about how you spend your money is inappropriate.

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I’ve struggled so much trying to make my billable hours, stay on top of work tasks, cook, clean, do laundry AND put it away, walk the dog (or just get outside at all), AND be a happy, patient mom. Even with a husband who contributes and helps, it’s impossible and completely exhausting. I commend you for getting help! Luckily our nanny also helps clean… maybe I should get a dog walker too…

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Similar but they don’t “question” it. I’m in tech consulting and long hours too with my 5 month old. So we have a nanny, my mom (was a SAHM) just keeps telling me how she “devoted” her whole life to us (her kids) and keeps insinuating that my thought process is different and my kid is not too much of a priority. I just let it go now

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My mom was a boomer working single mom (dad traveled extensively for work) and wore herself to the ground. Never a moment she wasn't flying from task to task, kid to kid, work to chores. All I remember is her being exhausted, cranky and zero patience. Today she feels so burnt out and exhausted and resentful and has the dark circles to match (while the jewelry collection she saved up for sits gathering dust in the bank locker). Don't let that be you. Enjoy your time with baby. Money is for buying time with your loved ones and rest & relaxation, not designer things you'll never use because you are busy doing dishes. 👏We need to normalize that Time is wealth, Health is wealth, Mental peace is wealth.👏

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Whenever says something like that I remind her that we are a two working parent household and don’t always want to spend our free time on those things, plus we can afford to outsource it due to having two incomes.

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This. We don't expect men to do everything full time. If men work, they traditionally aren't obligated to completely manage home and baby as well after 5pm. So why do we expect this of women? Us going to work is no different from them.

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Don’t bother trying to explain. She’ll never get it.

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Don’t bother explaining. She won’t understand. She doesn’t need to understand. “Bless her heart”, continue to love her and change the subject. I love my MIL too but I’ve recognized some subjects we have to agree and disagree.

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What happens in your household is absolutely NONE of her business. Hubby needs to tell her that her comments are not welcome.

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Tell her your billable hours goal and how that equates to a single day. You cannot possibly bill 6-8 hours/day while doing all of that.

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My husband both work from home and my daughter is in daycare. We both work in PA and are managers. I work a 80% reduced schedule but I still am working 40 hours a week. My in laws think the same. They think that our weeks are easy and we should be able to just pop over at night and visit. They don’t really understand that just because we work from home doesn’t mean we are available all the time

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