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Woman refuses to help MIL raise SIL's baby, 'she should have expected this.' AITA?

Woman refuses to help MIL raise SIL's baby, 'she should have expected this.' AITA?


"AITA for telling my MIL she should have expected this?"

I 31f am married to Dan 30m and we have been together for 8 years. My MIL has always wanted grandchildren and has asked me and Dan since we got married, but has given up on us as we want to stay child free. We can’t afford kids, and Dan isn’t interested.

Growing up he basically raised his younger sister Anna 21f as my MIL was not a reliable parent figure and struggled to cope my FIL’s death for years. Over the years Dan has mended his relationship with my MIL, and she has a good relationship with Anna.

Anna is in college and found out she was pregnant. The dad doesn’t want to be involved and Anna was debating keeping the baby. She came to me, and I told her to consider all her options. She is about to finish her degree, wants to do a masters and PhD, but this will be very difficult with a baby and she won’t get help from the dad.

She seemed pretty decided on having an abortion, however she went to stay with my MIL, who convinced Anna to keep the baby. Anna is an adult so can make her own decisions, but I don’t think my MIL was realistic with how it would be to raise a child as a single parent and my MIL offered to look after the baby while Anna was at school. I spoke to Anna again but she said she wanted to keep the baby.

Anna agreed to my MIL’s offer, had my niece and signed on for a masters at college. Me and Dan helped getting Anna set up with a nursery and supplies and while my MIL was able to take care of my niece, she underestimated the work to raise a kid and as Anna is at college until she comes back for the break, my MIL is raising my niece alone.

My MIL asked me to help, and I said no, I WFH but I can’t take care of a baby and work and frankly my niece isn’t my responsibility. I can help out occasionally and I told my MIL that she needs to face the consequences of her actions, or ask Anna. My MIL quoted a child needs a village to raise them but I didn’t budge.

Anna called me from college and got upset after she heard what I said to MIL, but I told her the same thing. I might be TA as even Dan thinks I’m being harsh and we could take our niece in for a weekend or something but I feel like my MIL/Anna would take advantage of this and I don’t want to be roped in as regular childcare, so I want to keep my stance.

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

alexandro_420 said:

Tell Dan that he can volunteer to babysit his niece if he wants to, but you will not take the responsibility. NTA.

zombieqatz said:

Nta if Dan wants to help baby sit he can go over to his sisters house and do it himself. Your freetime is yours to spend.

Beautiful-Report58 said:

Tell your husband he can go to his sister’s house to watch her child if he wants to be the village, otherwise you’ll be stuck with all the duties. Your mil made promises she can’t or won’t keep, that’s on them to change their life plans, not you. Your sil needs to change her path in life. Get a job, daycare, part time school, etc to make her life better for herself. NTA.

NerdySwampWitch40 said:

NTA. It may take a village, but you didn't agree to live in that village. MIL can look into programs to help herself. Nurseries that offer drop in care. Mother's day out programs. Etc. If your spouse wants to help, he can go over of a weekend and do some respite care. Anna can come home one weekend a month and parent the child she chose to keep. But none of that is your responsibility.

SweeperOfChimneys said:

NTA, actions have consequences. MIL and Anna are figuring that out. Not your baby, and you didn't volunteer for free childcare when the decision was being made, thus not your responsibility to provide free care now that MIL is overwhelmed with the choice she helped bring about.

shammy_dammy said:

NTA. Your MIL talked her into it, now she gets to face the consequences. Dan can take her for a weekend while you...go somewhere else.

a-_rose said:

NTA if your husband wants to play the hero then he can go spend the weekend with mil and help her raise the baby she coerced her daughter to keep. Niece is not your responsibility, period.

Everyone agreed unanimously with OP here. What's your advice for this family?

Sources: Reddit
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