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Man shocked when MIL calls police on him & partner; 'We're NOT abusive parents to our baby!' AITA? UPDATED

Man shocked when MIL calls police on him & partner; 'We're NOT abusive parents to our baby!' AITA? UPDATED


When this man is upset with his MIL, he asks the internet:

"My MIL called the police on us for how we parent our child. I'm furious. AITA?"

I really can’t believe it, but my MIL claims my partner (F) and I (M) (mid 30s) are abusing our baby (6 months old) since he “complains” while on his tummy (our doctor said he needs more tummy time for his flat spot, to strengthen his muscles, as well as to help him roll over).

He doesn’t like tummy time but it’s not like he even gets to the point of crying. He just makes uncomfortable noises. We tried explaining this to MIL but she keeps claiming we are forcing the baby and abusing him. MIL has been living with us the last few months and things have gone great until this happened.

Two days ago she snatched the baby from me during tummy time and said I am committing violence against him. That we are criminal parents. I regretted letting her take him but let her. Then yesterday she tried the same thing and I refused to give her my baby.


My baby complains when he isn’t doing something, he just constantly gets bored. MIL heard him complaining from another room and comes barging in saying I’m abusing him again.

I walked away from her and locked the door behind me. She pounded on the door saying she will call the cops and she did. I called my partner who left work immediately and drove home.

Two policemen talked to her and then us. I invited them in and said they could walk around.

They looked around and saw an immaculately clean place and a very happy baby (MIL had not been cleaning up the past couple days or helping with anything like she did in the past making me think this was premeditated to try and make us look bad, but I had been cleaning behind her).

MIL tried telling the cops that we were dirty because the dirty bottles and snot sucker were in the same place, that we pet the dog then hold the baby, and that we do tummy time where the cat lays on the couch. When she told them that tummy time hurts the baby they just said “I’m not a professional doctor.”

The police couldn’t contain their laughter saying it sounds like MIL thinks she is the “resident expert” and that they run into mothers who disagree with parenting styles a lot. I unfortunately couldn’t laugh along because I was in tears explaining the situation but it was obvious the police were on our side.

The police told us the clean house does not look like an unsafe environment for the baby. They also informed us that at this point they were just there for a venting session with MIL and not to worry. Of course no police report was filed.

My partner had my back the whole time and kicked MIL out of our house. She had a couple hours to pack her bags and then I drove her to a motel. She of course was mad but had no remorse and thinks she did nothing wrong.

She doesn’t have much money so my partner and I are paying for it. We got her a flight home tomorrow. I’m not sure what will happen in the future but it might be the last time MIL sees her grandchild…

MIL has no idea and thinks it’s her baby too. Luckily MIL and FIL live on the other side of the country. Here’s to hoping they never move here…

So MIL has made comments but my partner has shut her down. Like she didn’t like that his pediatrician is young, she doesn’t trust doctors. She doesn’t trust the skin treatment method the pediatrician chose for a rash.

She doesn’t like that we don’t give him water. But my partner just shuts her down immediately. Maybe things were just building up since she never got her way and then it all came out… But I wouldn’t say there were any arguments it was more just little comments she made.

She also hated the white noise machine and even told the police about it!! The officer stayed professional but you could tell was holding back laughing.

Before we give you OP's update, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

accomplishedcheek writes:

The moment she called the police, that was it. She will never see any of you again. She literally tried to steal your child from you - what do you think her end goal was? She was hoping to be awarded custody. How many times do you think she would have allowed you contact if she’d been successful?

You have to treat her as you would any other potential kidnapper. Start documenting for a restraining order because you’re going to need one. She’s already so far over the line, she’s not going to walk back. She’ll be reporting you to CPS from across the country. Get ahead of her.

Talk to them yourself, explain the situation, and make sure your husband knows that there is no possible way back for his mother now. She’s dead to all of you. She wasn’t just reporting you: she was reporting him too. Good luck.

laquila writes:

Probably the worst thing you can do to good parents is falsely accuse them of child abuse with the intention of having their child taken away from them. The absolute hell they would have to go through to prove themselves innocent and get their child back is such a viciously hateful thing to do to someone.

Meanwhile, the parents are traumatized at not having their child with them. And vice versa. The child is traumatized too, when suddenly their parents aren't there. Instead some strangers are. For god knows how long.

Or was MIL thinking the cops would immediately hand your baby to her and annoint her the guardian on the spot? While sending you and DH to jail? Like, what on earth did she think would happen?

She's unhinged, hateful and very unsafe. Good riddance. It should be the last time she sees any of you. Even if she moved right next door, she needs to be persona non grata.

pl8765 writes:

When my mom left my father, I was in early intervention for muscle weakness and would shriek and throw fits when my mom and grandma would do the assigned physio.

She was worried he'd weaponize ACS when I was a toddler, so she recorded so much stuff to cover her ass.

They actually bought a camcorder (90's... no cellphone cameras) to record how I would react to what was obviously toddler physical therapy. (I mean I also socked a physical therapist in the face when I was in kindergarten lol....)

Definitely cover your ass with recordings of what's going on. My father did try bullshit when I was in elementary and called ACS over me being bruised (even though he knew I fell down the stairs and off the chorus risers at school within two weeks of each other, and the school corroborated everything for my mom).

With what he was doing, it was trying to force my mom back with him by trying to f with her teaching license.

But yeah, narcs will try to use the system to abuse those who they lose control over, gather hard evidence.

sulswlaker writes:

I would take a hard stance here. She no longer has access to any of you. Period until she gets help, changes, makes amends, and keeps up those changes to a minimum level for a sustained amt of time, say minimum 6 months to a year.

I would say this looks like she gets therapy where you and SO can explain to the therapist your issues and what your minimum behavior changes look like including what amends look like to you and she keeps up with regular sessions. That realistically is likely every other week after a few establishing weekly visits.

But of course do what you think is best for you and your family unit as well as what the best is that you can do esp since it sounds like you may be footing some if not all of that bill.

Side note: You can do a phone conference to do the establishing what you need call during one of her sessions. No need to be there physically.

What you must do is have a reasonable plan of action she can take to change the hard no contact. And your SO needs to be willing to go hard NC with this path forward for her to take to change the NC.

She is not well on some level and she needs help. Sane and decent people do not call the cops because of tummy time and the other things she told the cops. What caring grandmother knowingly brings guns into a situation like that?

That is totally unhinged behavior and it needs to stop now. Next thing she’ll do is call cps on you guys. This is not okay. This is beyond having a disagreement and venting.

And now, OP's update (4 days later):

An hour or so after I dropped MIL off at the motel, both my partner and I got texts from FIL and I quote:

“You cant leave my wife in a hotel, I demand you guys take her back to your house now and work out any problems or misunderstandings. If something happens to her, you are going to be responsible.” And then later he argued that we didn’t explain tummy time well enough to her and said “you guys are not geniuses and need to be empathetic.”

My partner immediately blocked him but I didn't know until we discussed it later. I tried reasoning with FIL but realized it wasn't happening so I blocked him too.

The next day, the motel said I can’t pay by phone, so I had to drive to the motel to pay for one more night (this was Sat and MIL’s flight was Sunday). I also decided to bring MIL some snacks (she requested water but I decided some snacks too).

Listen yall I don’t know why, it was a bad area of town and I thought her walking to the gas station could be dangerous.

But if it makes you feel better, while she was living with us she bought some frozen taquitos that she told me I could eat because she didn’t like them (they really weren’t good, had some unidentifiable ground chicken).

Also the Wednesday of that week MIL and I had bought good chicken taquitos from Costco. Anyways, to be petty I put the ones she didn't like in the snack package for her…

When I dropped off the care package, MIL pleaded that she wasn’t really going to call child protective services (I forgot to add in the original she did threaten this). She didn’t offer an apology but wanted me to tell my partner that she wasn’t really going to call CPS.

I said alright and left. MIL then called my partner and I thought was going to apologize but didn’t.

Instead MIL started guilt tripping saying she thought she wasn't treated well at our wedding a couple years ago (?? Somehow didn’t mention it until now), and other random things. My partner hung up on her.

A lot of people asked why I didn’t get an Uber for MIL and I’m not sure. I think I was getting more and more upset on the inside, because I started envisioning myself telling MIL off once and for all.

So started to plan to speak my mind on the way to the airport. At this point it was clear MIL would never apologize (not that I would let her see my baby again anyways, I just wanted to see if she would apologize).

Note: I think I had forgotten to mention that earlier that week MIL told my partner that us forcing tummy time was equal to how FIL abused her and her children.

That really pissed off my partner who had to witness the physical violence of FIL growing up and says that MIL did nothing then (I’m not saying the abuse is MIL’s fault but my partner says it’s hypocritical and “fd up” of MIL to make the comparison of us and our baby).

So Sunday came, I picked MIL up and took her to the airport… on the way, I asked her if she was planning on apologizing. She said “to who?” I said both of us. She then started saying how we didn’t explain tummy time well enough and that it’s our fault.

So then I decided to say what I had planned. I said that this whole situation was her fault, that she put us in danger by calling the police, and that threatening to call CPS ensured she would never see her grandchild again.

I told her she is not welcome in our house in the future and if I see her again anywhere near our house then I would call the police for trespassing. I also told her she was a bad person which I kinda regret.

MIL had tears in her eyes. I was shaking and hastily dropped her bags off for her. As I started driving away I heard a tap on the glass. I nearly drove away with one of her bags in the back seat.

So as she picked up her last bag I called out again that she would never see her grandchild again and drove away angrily. So she is presumably back with FIL on the other side of the country.

I really can’t say I feel better, the rest of the day I felt just sad in general and I’m not sure why. I haven’t felt like cooking even though I cook most days, so we ordered Chinese.

It’s been a couple days now and I’m feeling slightly better, just replaying the car conversation and wishing I said even more by shaming her for guilt tripping my partner so much. I’ve gotten my neighbors to help with the baby and my partner and I found a new restaurant to try.

Anyways, I did speak with my partner and we agreed both MIL and FIL are blocked. So they are both officially blocked (on Facebook too, which is the only social media they use).

We haven’t heard from them but it has only been a couple days. They probably think we are overreacting and that we will come around but I don’t think we will. My partner’s brother is getting married in September so we might have see MIL and FIL there…

Thanks for all the support, I liked responding to you all’s comments and it feels good to be validated in my decisions. Many people said they would not have bought the hotel and plane ride for her but I think MIL is on food stamps and quite poor.

Also she did give us child care a few days a week for three months so I am thankful for that. She saved us quite a lot of money. Lastly, she was technically a tenant so she didn’t have to leave even though it is our house.

I don’t know the exact tenant laws but they vary by state here in the U.S. I think we did the right thing to pay for the hotel and airplane, and I still think it’s funny I gave her the taquitos.

Readers continued to weigh in on OP's updates:

crock776 writes:

For anyone wondering, wtf is tummy time and why do babies need it?

It’s literally just laying your baby on their stomach. It can help with a number of things from flat spots (places where the skull is flattening from baby laying on it too much) to digestion (pressure on the tummy helps to pass gas) to developing gross motor skills (pushing up on arms and rolling over).

Before the “Back to Bed” movement (putting babies on their backs to sleep), most babies got plenty of tummy time in their crib because the parenting advice was to let babies sleep on their stomach.

Babies usually sleep much better when on their stomach. Unfortunately, they also suffer from SIDS much more frequently. And, thus, “Back to Bed” and tummy time.

Also, I have never met a baby that likes tummy time. They all either get very, very mad or just want to cry. My best advise is to do tummy time with them, by getting on the floor, on your stomach, and playing with them. Or having an older child do it with them. They like that even better.

pli76 writes:

The MIL reminds me of my aunt. Living for so many years with a husband who is an asshole affected her into turning into the same kind of person.

Even if OOP hadn’t mentioned FIL’s abuse (by paraphrasing MIL, but still) it is easy to tell he makes demands expecting everyone to snap-to. MIL now uses the same technique. Bullying relentlessly until someone gives in.

Luckily, OOP’s husband is like either of his parents. I’m glad OOP went off on her. Just because MIL is an abuse victim doesn’t mean she is not also an abuser.

freecoffeeref writes:

I wish I could give OOP a hug, this story is (unnervingly) similar to how things went down when my MIL visited us to “help” when our son was born.

Though it never escalated to her calling or threatening to call the authorities, she got fixated on how we were burping him and claimed we were injuring his spine even though we assured her we burped him exactly how the nurses taught us in the NICU.

She also refused to cook, clean, grocery shop, learn to use the coffee marker or even hold the baby so we could rest. Luckily she agreed to leave early when we asked her to.

Five years later she was officially diagnosed with dementia, already in the moderate stages.

When my partner flew out to help move her into memory care my FIL admitted she had been showing signs of dementia for over a decade, for more than five years before he put her on a plane, alone, cross-country, to help with a colicky infant fresh out of the intensive care unit.

I’ve now I’ve had to reprocess a lot of anger I had towards my MIL. But there’s not really a path to repairing our relationship anymore, unfortunately.

I’m not suggesting OOP’s MIL is dealing with any sort of cognitive impairment, she’s probably just an ass. It sucks though, hard not to be envious of folks with helpful, loving grandparents to call on.

figurefourwoo writes:

When I was a kid in the 80s, I had a nosy aunt who already had grown children, so she was always poking her nose into how other people were raising kids, including my parents.

In the 80s, it wasn't that uncommon for kids to come home from school to an empty house. Some of my friends would get home an hour or so before their parents got off work. It was rarer for me because my mom didn't leave the house very often. As such, I didn't have a key to the house or anything.

This particular day it was colder than normal. My dad had a prize plum tree in the yard and during the winter months, he would put a tent over it to protect it from the elements.

I often treated that tent like my own little personal fort, which is what I did that day since it was cold. The tent was a big army tent and the wind was the main reason it was cold, so it was nice and comfy inside the tent.

Suddenly, I hear a car in the driveway that doesn't sound like my mom or dad, so I peek my head out of the tent to see my aunt. She calls me over, asks if I'm hungry, and offers me a Little Debbie cake. I don't know about you, but I was certainly hungry if a Little Debbie was being offered, so I took it without hesitation!

The next day, my aunt called CPS on my parents, saying that they left me outside alone in the cold and weren't feeding me because I was starving to death in a tent in the front yard.

CPS showed up to the house, and we had to go downtown to be interviewed individually.

I was interviewed, and basically told them what happened. My parents weren't home yet, so I was hanging out in the tent waiting on them. I wasn't really hungry, since I had eaten at school and it wasn't dinner time, but I wasn't going to turn down a Little Debbie cake.

That was basically the end of it. My parents cut off contact with my aunt for a while, but it was hard back then, because they would just show up at family events and stuff. Some people just don't know how to mind their own business.

What do YOU make of OP's post? Any advice for him and his partner?

Sources: Reddit
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