Thursday, October 11, 2007

Be mean or clean?

Is it terrible that I plan to refuse to let my daughter go to visit at my MIL and GmIL’s houses? Both houses are a total mess. There is “stuff” piled in my MIL’s house and I’m afraid that one day my then-crawling or walking baby will be crushed in an avalanche. I am seriously terrified of what could happen to my baby in that house.

Most of the time, I like my ILs – Sure I complain about the lack of warmth in my MIL (her husband used to say she could freeze anyone out) to me, but I’m sure she’ll love her grandchildren, etc. She’s not an irresponsible person, but I am truly scared of the “what-ifs” of leaving a child there to roam around the room for even a split second. And my husband agrees. Is there a way to kindly ask her to clean up the junk in her house before I allow my baby to visit for more than a few minutes, safely in my arms? At this point, there is no room to even put down a blanket (not that I would, since that floor hasn’t seen a mop or broom in at least 10 years and they have animals) or set up a pack’n’play that would at least be a contained, safe, clean environment. There MIGHT be enough room to set down the infant carrier, but her dogs aren’t that well behaved and I would want to be very cautious about that.

My mom used to have a sign in her house that declared “A clean house is the sign of a misspent life.” Growing up there was always clutter and we rarely did one of those spic and span type cleanings which would include dusting every surface, etc. So sure, our house was far from “clean” but it was never like this house. There is always room for multiple people to sit down, to set your things, and I can’t picture a time when we couldn’t have set up a pack’n’play for a visiting child (not that we had many, but we could have.)

So if I want one of my SILs or MIL to babysit (which they have all implied they are most willing to do) I will have to have them come to us – but I’m picturing that coming up as an issue at some point. How will we handle it? I have no idea.

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