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MIL fakes illness to get a tattoo instead of babysitting newborn grandchild.

MIL fakes illness to get a tattoo instead of babysitting newborn grandchild.


"My MIL canceled on me last minute and I don’t know how to tell her that I’m hurt"


Hello everyone. Here’s a little backstory of my situation. It’s been a couple times that my MIL cancels on me last minute when I have important appointments, or that she doesn’t show up when invited to lunch at my place with my 10 month old there. She often says that she’s sad that she doesn’t get to spend a lot of time with my baby, but she keeps making excuses to not show up.

In beginning of December 2023, I asked her if she could babysit my baby on January 22nd 2024 because I had a very important appointment that I couldn’t miss. She happily agreed.

We have talked about it several times in which she asked me if it was okay if she booked a tattoo in the afternoon and if it would be an inconvenience, or if I would already be back. I was fine with it. I’ve confirmed a lot the month prior to make sure she wouldn’t cancel. She didn’t.

The day before (which is Sunday the 21st of January) I text her around 1:30 PM to confirm. She agrees. She then texts me an hour later saying she just started a sinusitis (like in the same hour) and felt like she was breathing broken glass.

She said it came totally out of the blue and would understand if I preferred that she would stay away to not contaminate my baby. Of course, I said I’d rather not her getting the baby sick. So I had to call my mom last minute (and thank god my mom was available.)

After my appointment yesterday, I saw a Facebook story where she did end up getting tattooed anyway and learned from my man (we all work together but I’m on leave) that she was looking like she was feeling very well and not sick.

I’m pretty irritated that she felt the need to lie to me, and that she put me in a situation where I had to find someone to babysit last minute. I’m also disappointed that she constantly says that she misses my kid and wishes to spend more time with him. How do I tell her that I’m irritated and disappointed without starting a family feud? Thank you.

Here were the top rated comments from readers:


You don't. You just never ask her to babysit again as she's unreliable. And, when she says "I miss the kids" you simply say "You know where we are." Drop the rope and she'll either never see them or get a rocket up her ass and put in more effort. Either way it's down to her.


This is great advice. If MIL doesn't care enough to show up, then she won't care if you're hurt. Don't ask her to help out your family again and tune out her complaints.


This might be one of those times where the invitations need to stop. Leave it to her to make the effort. Her actions will speak volumes as long as you pay close attention.


I would just drop the rope and stop inviting her. Recognize that you can't depend on her and seek support from people who are actually reliable and who you trust to, if nothing else, not string you along then drop you at the last minute.

I get the feeling that she doesn't actually care, and you telling her you're hurt will just prompt her to turn it around and ramp up some woe-is-me story about how you don't understand her situation or some other BS.


You just need to come to terms with her just wanting to bitch about not seeing your child, not actually seeing them. Your life will become so much easier once that becomes clear for you. Just let her continue to bitch and don’t go out of your way to make anything happen for her!

The OP responded here:


I’m still hurt because she lied to me though. We work together, it’s not like I never see her. I spend 40hours a week with her in the office and I can’t have resentment against her or I just know it’ll get ugly.


So tell her the truth and then drop the rope. Do you really care if what you say to her hurts her feelings?

The OP again responded:


I do care. We work together, I can’t turn my workplace into a hostile environment just because I’m irritated. Plus, I like her. She’s a very good MIL overall, just unreliable…


You can be hurt by the lie and use it as a lesson to move on. For me personally, I don’t think there’s anything to say as actions speak louder than words. This isnt a one or two time occurrence, she’s been cancelling for her own reasons (real or ‘created’), and she has proven to be unreliable.

Let her complain about seeing the kid. From now on, if she wants to see baby then SHE can reach out to you to set something up, but stop involving her when you NEED something (time off, a babysitter for date night, stuff that you really want to attend). Indoor movie night date (sure pencil her in), traveling to a conference (absolutely not.)

It’s usually better preventing a problem than continuing to deal with it. I think that applies in this case. And if MIL does happen to ask why she hasn’t been hearing from you about this, just let her know that you found a reliable babysitter with availability and just started using them so as “not to put pressure on the family.”

The same day, the OP returned with an update.


UPDATE: I’ve made my decision. Since we’ve been close from the beginning and really appreciate one another, I won’t say anything. I’ll just stop expecting her to make an effort.

The ball is in her court, if she wants to see my kid then fine we’ll make plans. But since she’s unreliable and I should’ve taken a hint, she will not be asked to babysit again. Thank you all for your precious advice!

So, if you were the OP, what would you say to her MIL?

Sources: Reddit
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