5 Signs Mother-in-Law is Trying to Take Over Your Child

signs mother in law is trying to take over your child

Everyone around mothers tries to be supportive, caring, and helpful. Well, new mothers deserve this support, as giving birth and raising a child for the first time is not an easy job. In this scenario, some people give wise advice and try to be genuinely helpful. However, some red flags are camouflaged under the tree of helping hands and supportive fellows.

A woman’s relationship with her mother-in-law has always been discussed as fragile and uncomfortable. This relationship is not easy to handle, especially when both parties have strong personalities and perspectives. Nonetheless, if you feel your mother-in-law is a red flag, then stay your ground and refuse to be manipulated. Your mother-in-law may be jealous of you if she is insecure about your presence and thinks you will replace her eventually.

Here I have compiled 5 reasons you may think your mother-in-law is trying to take over your child.

5 Signs Your Mother In Law Is Trying To Take Over Your Child

When it comes to setting healthy boundaries in the case of your child, a toxic mother-in-law can be spotted. Regardless of all the efforts you make to improve the relationship between you two, it often ends up in chaos and self-judgment.

One red flag you can easily spot in your domineering mother-in-law is disturbing your child’s routine. She may take away your child all day, so you won’t spend much time with him. Not only this but turning her son against you is also a sign that she is a toxic mother-in-law.

Here are 5 other signs indicating that your mother-in-law is trying to take over your child to leave you behind empty-handed.

Her Unannounced Visits At Your Place

Showing up at your house unannounced more than twice is a sign that your mother-in-law is a control freak. It will disrupt your schedule and your baby’s routine as well. If she’s up to that, she’ll make sure that you don’t find any quiet time with your kid, where they can learn and grow. This can frustrate you.

In addition, she will surely criticize your home’s situation or your work ethic. It is obvious that if your controlling mother-in-law arrives unannounced, she will find you probably napping, showering, or coddling the child.

You can’t maintain home tidy all the time. It will give your toxic mother-in-law a chance to criticize you.

No matter how much effort you put into honoring her at your house and making her comfortable, nothing will ever work. Your jealous mother-in-law will always find a way to torture you through her words or judgmental stares.

Doesn’t Appreciate Suggestions or Discussions

A controlling mother-in-law never listens to your suggestions. When you try to tell her your problems, she may oversimplify them or accuse you of everything.

Moreover, if you ask her to tell you first about her visits or not to use a specific tone in front of your child, she overplays you and turns this into an argument.

She may shed tears to make you feel bad and to portray you as a villain in front of your husband and son. Sometimes she may even create drama to get your reaction out of it.

It is a tactic used by a jealous mother-in-law, which shows she holds grudges and doesn’t forgive even after you genuinely apologized for something.

Manipulate Others With Her Emotional Side

Well, manipulating others with deceiving emotions and care is the ultimate red flag a mother-in-law shows toward her daughter-in-law. Such types of mothers-in-law are the most deceiving and dangerous ones, as they play the victim card. No one believes you, as the mother-in-law behaves and portrays herself as an emotionally caring woman that cares for her son and grandchild.

With her emotional blackmailing skills, she can make you change plans according to her will. You must stick to your grounds and refuse to be camouflaged by her manipulative skills. Be upfront with her and also make her help you with daily tasks.

She Never Ever Say Sorry About Her Behavior and Picks Up Fights

A toxic mother-in-law always picks up fights over small things. Not only this, she doesn’t apologize afterward for her behavior. She also sets a bad example for your kid. How can you discipline your kid when his grandma doesn’t act upon basic human etiquette?

A good relationship can never be built if she completely ignores your side of the story and doesn’t apologize for her mistakes. She is self-centered and may even pick up a fight at family gatherings to make you feel uncomfortable in front of family members.

She Doesn’t Respect Your Personal Space

She completely ignores the healthy boundaries you’ve created and tries to invade your personal space. For example, she may go through your phone and your stuff in the room, and if you catch her red-handed, she turns it up to you and doesn’t accept her mistake.

This can lead you to frustration and grief. But let me tell you, you need to get over it and hold your ground. You need to remind your toxic mother-in-law that she should get over her controlling nature and that you don’t allow her to invade your space.

Is Mother-in-Law as a Nanny Good Idea

Is Mother-in-Law as a Nanny Good Idea

I will be neutral here and discuss the advantages and pitfalls of hiring your mother-in-law as your baby’s nanny.


Getting a nanny from your family like in-laws, your own family, or parents is such a relief. You already know them and the child is also familiar with them. Some mothers-in-law prove to be supportive and the child’s life-long best friends.

If a mother-in-law voluntarily asks to babysit a child, who would refuse to do that? It is a money-saving option, as daycares and babysitters cost a lot of money. So if your mother-in-law is supportive and helpful, hiring her as a nanny will be a great idea.

Your mother-in-law being the nanny also gives new mothers a chance to learn, grow, and get helpful tips. Some mothers-in-law treat their daughters-in-law like their children and advise them in every step of motherhood.


Taking care of kids is a tough job. If your mother-in-law is aged but still wants to nanny your child, then you should keep in mind that she won’t be able to control all the things like food, bath, and cleaning the mess.

Some mothers also complain that giving all the responsibilities of their kids to their mothers-in-law has resulted in clashes and big fights. It shows that not all free things are blessings.

How Do I Get My Mother-in-Law to Stop Interfering With My Child?

You can deal with an overbearing mother-in-law by simply acting on the following points.

1. Try to find the reason behind her behavior.

2. Try setting boundaries between your child and your mother-in-law as well as other family members.

3. Discuss things with your husband calmly and gently. Ask him to find any solution to the situation.

4. Practice to accept her behavior and try to avoid her as much as you can for your mental health.

5. Self-respect is everything. So maintain your self-respect and don’t try to meet her expectations all the time.

What Causes Jealousy in Mothers-in-Law Anyways?

Research shows that if you try to build a strong relationship with your mother-in-law, you need to discuss things with her. Sometimes, a jealous mother-in-law doesn’t know her daughter-in-law much, as they don’t have any chance to live together or spend time together.

3 common reasons a mother-in-law feels jealous could be:

Your child doesn’t pay her much attention.

Her son doesn’t listen or act upon her words anymore.

You may not give her proper attention or importance.

For centuries, the relationship of a mother-in-law with her daughter-in-law and son-in-law has been a troll. Psychologists studied and still studying the reasons behind this psyche but couldn’t figure out much.

Final Verdict

For new mothers, it’s quite normal to think that someone is trying to take away her kid, especially her mother-in-law. The reason could be the controversial relationship. However, stick to the facts and try to unveil the signs your mother-in-law is being domineering.

Some signs are your mother-in-law is trying to take away your child, moving you out of the picture, and inserting herself into your place.

I would suggest sticking to your ground, not losing hope, and asking for help from someone you can trust. Nobody can take away your child from you, be firm and perseverant.

Stephanie Edenburgh

I'm Steph, a mom to 3 beautiful children and lover all things having to do with my family and being a mom. I've learned a lot raising my own children and working in education and healthcare roles throughout my career. Living in beautiful Southern California I enjoy documenting and writing about all of the hard work us mom's do on a daily basis.

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