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Pregnant DIL needs advice about MIL who wants to come down for a visit for DGC's birthday

(21 Posts)
whitepeonies44 Wed 14-Apr-21 21:48:31

I would really love some advice from the experts here. I am going into my 3rd trimester and am classified as a high risk pregnancy. My daughter's birthday is approaching and my MIL has asked if she and FIL can come down for the weekend for a visit. They live about 5 hours away by car and would stay at ours for visits. Although, they are vaccinated I am not vaccinated. DH and I don't want to take any risks with Covid, etc.. We'd be happy for them to come down at a later point and have an extended stay, once I give birth but we are still shielding as I'm not vaccinated. I don't want to offend her in any way. Our relationship is good. I text and send her pics and videos of my daughter during the week so she is always up to date with what is going on with her DGC. We try to call her a few times a week. If we are super busy, we will call once or twice a week. My DH works from home full-time and I freelance and work from home while looking after my daughter until she can get a place in pre-school. My MIL is estranged from her daughter (DH's sister) and so I am very careful when it comes to the possibility of offending her. I feel so bad that we have to say no. I will ask DH to break the news but if this was you, is there anything in particular you would want to hear or is there anything that we could say to soften the blow?

kwest Wed 14-Apr-21 21:59:19

I would totally understand and suggest that for this year, your DGC , rather like HM The Queen, has two birthdays, an actual one and an official one. Keeping you and your babies safe is the priority at the moment.

Hithere Wed 14-Apr-21 22:16:41

I would tell them what you told us here - it is a super reasonable request.

justwokeup Wed 14-Apr-21 22:31:46

"DH and I don't want to take any risks with Covid, etc.. We'd be happy for them to come down at a later point and have an extended stay, once I give birth but we are still shielding as I'm not vaccinated."
Tell them exactly this, with apologies. They have asked so the choice is yours and please don't do anything you feel uncomfortable with at this stage of your pregnancy. They will not want to take any risks with your family. Presumably it will be a small birthday celebration with no-one else invited so they are not likely to be upset. You can invite them to join you for on-screen candle-blowing and virtual present-giving.

CafeAuLait Wed 14-Apr-21 22:50:48

It's not a healthy relationship if you have to walk on eggshells when communicating with your MIL. It sounds like you do more than enough including her. Just have your husband explain and she should understand if she is reasonable. It's okay if she is disappointed which is understandable, but she should respect and understand your concerns. It's not personal. If she doesn't understand it's for her to deal with. You can include them in other ways as suggested above.

Gannygangan Wed 14-Apr-21 22:54:27

She's lucky to have you

And of course, just say no.

Not the time for you to be entertaining her when pregnant and with the virus still knocking around.

Hithere Thu 15-Apr-21 00:01:18


You cannot modify your responses and behaviour to appease your mil for something you have no control over, her estrangement with her daughter.

You need to do what is best for your own family - if your mil is reasonable, she will understand.

sukie Thu 15-Apr-21 02:51:27

What everyone else has said. Just tell her simply what you've stated here. Perhaps during a video chat, you and your husband together can nonchalantly tell them what you're planning to do regarding the birthday party (e.g. online party or delayed celebration). They will express disappointment and that's fine. Let them know you're disappointed too but don't dwell on it.

We have mailed birthday and holiday gifts to our dgc and watched them open online. We sing Happy Birthday with them and clap when the candles are blown out. Though we miss them to pieces, we enjoy what we can. It is what it is.

You are a good dil. Take care of yourself and your family.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 09:01:18

"Oh it will be so lovely to see you but at the moment we are being extra extra careful because of Covid and U haven't had a vaccination. Once the baby is born and I have had my jab it will be lovely for us to have an extended stay for a really good catch up. How about we facetime on * birthday and she can show you all her presents .... And that lively catch up will be something really nice to look forward to"

If your MIL is sensible she will accept this fine.

Polarbear2 Thu 15-Apr-21 09:22:23

Can they come and stay in a hotel nearby? Meet you at the pub or a cafe outside - or in the park maybe? Just a thought. I can see both sides but if you’re not comfortable just be kind and honest and offer a compromise as suggested above. Good luck. Hope your pregnancy goes well.

hazel93 Thu 15-Apr-21 09:47:14

What a lovely DIL you are !
However, there is no way they should visit at present. Just because they have been vaccinated does not mean they cannot transmit the virus.
Of course be kind but also firm, your family are the priority.

Oopsadaisy1 Thu 15-Apr-21 09:50:49

Just say no, if you say to come down and stay elsewhere they will still be with you all day.

Explain that it’s because of Covid, it’s sad but there you go.......

You don’t need to grovel about it, just be clear that they can come and stay later (much later) in the year, but that you will invite them when you and your DH feel it’s safe.

Nanof3 Thu 15-Apr-21 10:05:55

You could tell them you have been advised by your medical team that under no circumstances are you to mix with anyone outside your immediate household, you are all disappointed but looking forward to a real party and get together after the new baby has arrived and all of the family have been vaccinated.
As already suggested have a zoom call so they can sing Happy Birthday and watch card and present opening.
Even the most determined MIL will want you all to be safe and healthy and you do not need any extra stress.

grannyactivist Thu 15-Apr-21 10:11:18

What a shame that your mother-in-law has put you in this position. I think your response is perfectly reasonable and I would hope that your m-i-l would see it as such.

Good luck with your pregnancy! smile

trisher Thu 15-Apr-21 10:11:37

Just because they are vaccinated doesn't mean they can't contract covid or pass it on. A friend is just off to visit her DD and baby. Her DD has told her she will have to take a covid test on the doorstep before she will let her into the house. Not sure what happens if it's positive I suppose she will have to go home! The point is you aren't being difficult or unreasonable. If they really want to come they can stay elsewhere and you can meet up outside somewhere, perhaps for a meal. If they won't do that then you are quite justified in saying "Not yet."

eazybee Thu 15-Apr-21 11:06:41

Your in-laws have asked if they can visit therefore you can reply to their request with the perfectly reasonable explanations concerning the covid situation and your pregnancy you have given here.
No need to post about it.

greenlady102 Thu 15-Apr-21 11:11:50

I'd definitely say that the doctors have said for the safety of you and the baby that you have to shield....that you are all very disappointed but can't risk it and will be so happy to see them once you are allowed to.

Roses Thu 15-Apr-21 11:16:15


That's a bit unkind what's wrong with posting to ask advice

Grammaretto Thu 15-Apr-21 11:26:07

If I were you I would probably blame the situation which is the truth. No need to apologise. It is a fact, sadly, that we all have to make sacrifices and are not able to do everything we would like.
When it's allowed, you can tell her that she can come.

Unless there is another reason you are not telling us about? Sometimes there's a battle of the grannies going on on these threads. wink

Best of luck with the impending birth.

welbeck Thu 15-Apr-21 15:44:00

there's no need to post about anything; we do it to amuse ourselves or seek other opinions, that's rather the point of a forum.

OP don't be apologetic.
MIL should not be setting the agenda anyway.
she should wait to be invited.
why did she fall out with her daughter. was she over-bearing.

V3ra Thu 15-Apr-21 16:28:59

If you're in England, only garden visits are allowed until May 17th.
No-one can stay in a hotel for a social visit until May 17th.
Your mother-in-law surely wouldn't expect you to break any laws?