Can you imagine waking up in the middle night and finding that your newborn baby isn’t in their crib where you left them? One woman, who chose to remain anonymous, shared having this exact experience on Reddit in a post titled, “MIL Basically Kidnapped My Baby.” Come to find out, her mother-in-law had let herself into her home in the middle of the night and took the baby so the woman and her husband could get a good night’s sleep.
The woman only realized that her mother-in-law had taken the baby when she went to call the police and found a note. “I was immediately enraged. I screamed so hard I almost vomited. I called her and saw red. I told her I was coming to get the baby and she would never see her again and to never contact our family again,” she wrote. The incident wasn’t a one-off though. Since giving birth, the new mother had endured her mother-in-law’s visits in which she spent most of the time criticizing her parenting skills. The grandmother also insisted that the baby would sleep better at her home, yet the mother refused since she was a breastfeeding newborn.
Discovering that her baby was missing sent the new mother into a tailspin. Already dealing with post-partum anxiety, she found herself terrified to go to sleep not knowing if her baby would be there when she woke up. After getting no support from her husband, she decided to leave with her baby and check into a hotel. Eventually, she was able to regain some peace of mind and speak to her husband. She explained that the incident had been unacceptable and was unsure if she could ever trust her mother-in-law again.
After seeking therapy and having her husband agree to put some distance between himself and his mother, the woman was able to move back home. She also received an apology letter from her mother-in-law that felt a little less than genuine. Finally, the new mother decided to take some time to decide if she could being herself to forgive her mother-in-law.
In an update, the woman wrote that she was grateful for the support of her family and friends, as well as the encouragement of other Reddit users. She also expressed that she is taking time to assess the state of her marriage and working to establish her authority as a mother in order to protect her child. “I don’t want my forgiveness to seem like weakness and in the end put my child in more situations like this,” she wrote. Undoubtedly, many readers have had equally horrifying experiences with toxic relatives. We welcome your stories as well as your feedback.