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to think that my DIL uses too many cleaning products?

(182 Posts)
flopen Thu 22-Apr-21 17:11:17

I get on well with my DIL and we often go over and help with our grandson, who is still a baby.
But today she was cleaning while we waited for the baby to wake up, using a lot of sprays. They are in a tiny house with no ventilation and I can still feel the chemicals at the back of my nose, if you know what I mean.
I really don't think it's good for anyone, but am concerned about the effect on my grandson.
But I don't know what to say, if anything. Advice appreciated.

Hithere Thu 22-Apr-21 17:28:17

I would say nothing at all and enjoy the visits

Elegran Thu 22-Apr-21 17:34:01

Next time she does it, wince and say "Oh, that goes for my sinuses! Spraying must be spreading it around into the air. What is in it?" That should make her read the label and read out what it contains (If the ingredients are listed!) which gives you a chance to say that you hope it has settled by the time the baby is awake, as it can't be good for his little lungs if it has this effect on you.

But don't keep pushing it - it is her house, and mother-in-laws who interfere risk being told to *.

midgey Thu 22-Apr-21 17:35:49

Ooh I wouldn’t say a word! Just keep out of the way when she is cleaning!

BlueBelle Thu 22-Apr-21 17:42:50

Good grief why do mother in laws look for trouble It’s really not your business if she stands on her head and does the soft shoe shuffle while cleaning her house
You cannot live her life, your way it just isn’t the way to go She’s got her way you’ve got yours

Doodledog Thu 22-Apr-21 17:49:33


Good grief why do mother in laws look for trouble It’s really not your business if she stands on her head and does the soft shoe shuffle while cleaning her house
You cannot live her life, your way it just isn’t the way to go She’s got her way you’ve got yours

Absolutely this grin.

You can, of course, think what you like (although why it would cross your mind to criticise how other people clean their house is beyond me), but it would be 100% unreasonable for you to comment, and would stand a good chance of alienating your DIL.

Callistemon Thu 22-Apr-21 17:55:43

I use Method cleaning products and they are supposed to be natural but they do smell very strong.

Perhaps she is following that cleaning woman on the internet - I was surprised that someone who is young was recommending the use of chemical products.
Mrs Hinch?

I just looked and she recommends cleaning wipes too!

Callistemon Thu 22-Apr-21 17:56:42

Yes - make no comment!
That way lies trouble.

3nanny6 Thu 22-Apr-21 17:56:58

I am a bit of a cleaning queen and like to use spray products to clean the house.
It has been a while now and my adult son was in the kitchen when I was cleaning and he said that the product was strong and when I used it I should have a window open for
ventilation so as not to breathe in the fumes off the product.

Why not point out to your son that fumes off cleaning products can be strong and it is good to have some ventilation that is not being critical just pointing out the obvious. All these sprays if over used can lead to allergies.

flopen Thu 22-Apr-21 17:57:20

fair enough. Obviously I'm the only person concerned about the effects of chemicals on a baby's neurological system. How awful of me to be concerned about their health.

Callistemon Thu 22-Apr-21 17:59:12

If you use all natural products could you buy a couple to give her, suggesting how effective they are?

Callistemon Thu 22-Apr-21 18:02:52

Obviously I'm the only person concerned about the effects of chemicals on a baby's neurological system. How awful of me to be concerned about their health.
Well, it's not my grandchild.

It is entirely up to you of course.

I'm not sure why you asked if you didn't want anyone's opinions. confused

Buy her some of the natural cleaning products which you use and give them to her, saying how wonderful they are and has she tried them?

Jaxjacky Thu 22-Apr-21 18:05:52

I too would say nothing, babies have survived far worse over the generations; cigarette smoke, coal fires etc.

freedomfromthepast Thu 22-Apr-21 18:11:41

I certainly hope that the passive aggressive way you responded here after not hearing what you wanted is not presented to your son/dil.

We can all be concerned. Heck, we could stage an intervention. But at the end of the day, that is THIER house and THEIR baby. And if you decide that your concern is more important then their right to live without interference, you may find yourself with all new troubles.

I also feel it is important to point out that for the last year, it has been recommended to clean surfaces with the likes of bleach, lysol, etc. At least here in the US it has. Maybe your DIL is worried about Covid lasting on surfaces? That would certainly affect your grandsons health.

If you really feel you MUST interfere, maybe purchase a bottle of chemical free cleaning product and say "hey, I just tried this new product and I love it so much I got one for you to try, let me know what you think."

And then NEVER bring it up again unless she does.

This way, you have done what you reasonably can do without offending.

Greeneyedgirl Thu 22-Apr-21 18:27:09

Tricky one. Give her frequent presents of houseplants. Look up the ones that are best at removing toxins such as VOC (in lots of sprays) from the atmosphere.

NotSpaghetti Thu 22-Apr-21 18:29:28

flopen - I would be concerned too.
Not entirely sure what to say exactly but I think she just may not be aware.

So many people think babies need everything super-clean... and then there's Coronavirus.

If your relationship is good, could you say you have just read an article about the problems of asthma and diabetes with some cleaning products and was totally shocked? If she's interested you can start a conversation "as equals" which is less threatening?
You could Google some articles first as there's lots out there.

There's also lots of people suggesting bleach with vinegar too of course!

Good luck.
I would not be able to be quiet on this if the baby is in that environment I'm afraid. Obviously, once it's raised, as grandparents we have no control so I'd have to try to bite my lip.

Lucca Thu 22-Apr-21 18:31:46

I don’t have this problem as my lovely talented wonderful DIL virtually never does housework !! If I were in your position though I would keep quiet.

Cabbie21 Thu 22-Apr-21 18:55:40

I would ‘t comment. But I might sneeze and then I could blame it legitimately on the smelly spray.

blue25 Thu 22-Apr-21 18:58:17

don’t say anything! Why would you-none of your business.

Calendargirl Thu 22-Apr-21 19:02:26

They are in a tiny house with no ventilation

No windows? Or does she choose not to open them?

Not up to you really, but if she were a DIL who didn’t clean the house, that would be a different problem.

sodapop Thu 22-Apr-21 19:10:00

Is the spray cleaning covid related flopen we have been bombarded with ads telling us to clean everything in sight. I share your concern as I used a well known spray in our shower cubicle and literally couldn't catch my breath. I had to go outside in the fresh air. As freedomfromthepast said take a chemical free spray and ask your daughter in law for her opinion but don't criticise. She is doing her best to keep things clean for her family which is commendable.

foxie48 Thu 22-Apr-21 19:12:45

Tell her about the thread on here about removing your shoes before entering a house, have a good laugh, I did with my daughter, ignore her cleaning and just enjoy time with her and the GC.

geekesse Thu 22-Apr-21 19:24:14

You may think what you wish, but how your daughter-in-law chooses to clean her house is none of your business, and you are being unreasonable even to consider saying something to her. Household cleaning products are safety tested, and are vanishingly unlikely to do a child any harm at all. If you don’t like the smell of the stuff she uses, stay away.

Smileless2012 Thu 22-Apr-21 19:34:25

I would follow Callistemon's suggestion and get your d.i.l. one or two natural cleaning products, saying how good you've found them, and perhaps she'd like to give them a go.

NotAGran55 Thu 22-Apr-21 19:35:04

I totally agree with you flopen . When I had my children 25 years ago I had a leaflet from the health visitor about cleanliness around little children . He said that they are in far greater danger from cleaning products than the ‘germs’ they are there to eradicate.
Surely we have learnt from Covid that good old soap and water does the trick and always has .