Hi my parents in law have been of great help in helping me to take care of my kids as I am a working mum. But my mother in law likes to make noise about how I run the household and also scold my helper when she doesn't do things her way. I don't want my helper to get pissed off at her and am also afraid that she will not want to work for us. Any tips? Should I get my helper to listen to her and do things her way or do things my way?

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I am assuming that your helper has been great with the family for you to bring up this concern. If I were in your shoes, I would approach my helper separately to explain things to her. Such as how not to take the "scoldings" of your mother-in-law to heart. I think since you are working and she will be there to face your mother-in-law for longer periods of time, it may be alright for her to follow your mother-in-law's instructions (so as not to put her in a spot). But of course, that is if you are alright with your mother-in-law's way of doing things. If your mother-in-law's way is erm.. unreasonable (for lack of a better word), perhaps can then get your husband to speak to her and tell her how you all want things to be done around the house. It is easier for the son to communicate these to his mother to minimize the risk of it becoming a source of conflict. She can be "tasked" to make sure that the helper is following what you and your husband had taught her (instead of your mother-in-law's way). Good help is difficult to find! Hope you find a way around this. :)

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Same situation. Always have to pacify my helper by explaining to her the things ah ma did. If ah ma have her way of doing things, just follow accordingly and do not argue or talk back with her. However if I have my way of doing things, she will have to follow as well afterall I am the paymaster. Knowing that she might be caught in between, she will have to tell me so that I can balance things out. I always explain that this how SG household like especially with ah ma. Just got to be patient and respect ah ma at all times. I will get my hubby to be involve by telling her mum too, good help are hard to come by,scare her by quoting news articles on those cases where helpers lost their sanity,etc.

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You have to talk to your maid that do not take anything she says to heart and do not get bugged. You have to form a secret team with your maid, and in unsaid ways communicate to her that you two are on the same page. Also, you can have a word with you MIL or best is to tell your husband to convey to his mom that it is very difficult to find a good help and if she keeps nagging her, she may leave. And the situation will be very difficult especially for her as she would have to look after the baby and the home all by her own when two of you will be out. I think your husband will be better person to make your MIL understand. So, let him do the talking.

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VIP Member

This is a tricky question as it involves many people directly (you, MIL, helper) and indirectly (children, husband, PIL). You may want to firmly but politely tell your MIL that your helper is hired by you and the standards for the helper are set with you. However, if you are alright with your MIL's standards on your helper, then you can advise your MIL to soften her tone and try a different approach when asking the helper to do tasks. Maybe you could read this for more suggestions on how to handle your MIL: http://sg.theasianparent.com/how-to-keep-interfering-in-laws-in-line/

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Speak to your husband and tell him how important a help is to your household right now, and if she leaves, there will come many issues in your job and stress will automatically be there in your both life as a whole. Tell him to talk to his mother and make her understand not to nag the help and you will give her instructions whatsoever. You can also speak to your maid and take her in confidence and tell her not to mind your MILs behaviour as old people have peculiar problems of being dissatisfied with everything especially with their DILs.

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You have to talk with your mother-in-law regarding youer helper, tell her that she has to treat this poor lady like a decent person regardless of the situation. You can always overtake the authority in your household in a subtle way that she will not be offended, like compromising. If she wants to do this you can say "oh that's a good idea but i really really wanna do this but we can do that some other day, can you help me?" You can do it sister!

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2y ago

I was in a similar situation. After sharing my concerns with my mil it became worst. She became emotional, didn't want to acknowledge my presence for 2 weeks. After i had my child in her presence when such bad conflicts happens she would tone it down a notch to the helper. Grandma has to set a good example in a child's eyes...

I would suggest to allow your husband to do the talking. You wouldnt want her to feel upset even further. Old ppl they tend to be more vulnerable and sensitive and they might take it the wrong way esp if the daughter in law is the one who is voicing it out. Bt if your MIL is more understanding and open to criticsm and advice i dont see no harm for you to highlight some points. Cheers!

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There are many times mil wants her way and maid gave her black face. So, in those circumstances, I normally will talk to maid after pil sleep. Have to tell the maid not to talk back to the elderly, just follow their instructions then at night, tell me what happened and ventilate to me. It keeps her sanity and in the check on what is happening at home too.

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well.. the best advice i can give is "get a new place together with your husband and your nanny". i do have same problems with MIL and it's really so frustrating because she's also pissing me and my nanny. Everyday we have to deal with her BS and it already feels like it's not a healthy relationship anymore.

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TapFluencer

Try to put some boundaries with your mil that your helper reports to you and not her. This is not easy to achieve so maybe talk to your husband to help manage your mil expectation. Also, she needs to stop meddling into your household for peace between you and your hubby.