Widowed Father Calls Cops On Mother-In-Law After She Tried To Breastfeed His Baby

She definitely overstepped.

man on the phone holding a babe YAKOBCHUK VIACHESLAV / Shutterstock

A man questioned his actions after he called the police on his mother-in-law for trespassing in his house and firing his babysitter behind his back.

The man allowed his mother-in-law to watch his newborn while he was at work.

In a Reddit post, the man explained that his wife tragically passed away minutes after giving birth to their now-four-month-old baby, Sammy, leaving the grieving father in need of a nanny for the baby while he's at work during the day. After informing his mother-in-law of his plans to hire a nanny, she offered to watch the baby at no cost, and he eventually agreed.


"Everything was fine for the first couple of weeks until I noticed that Sammy's not feeding as much. Her formula's barely touched," the dad wrote in his post. Concerned about his daughter's eating habits, he confronted his mother-in-law, whose response shocked him.

"She said she's trying to breastfeed my daughter," he wrote. "At first I thought she was joking then I realized she wasn't."

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Angered by the mother-in-law's revelation, the man asked that she not breastfeed his baby. However, the mother-in-law completely disregarded his request.


"I caught her again when I walked in my daughter's room and she was forcing Sammy to latch," he explained, firing her and hiring a new nanny. But after just two days of work, the nanny failed to show up, prompting the dad to call her and figure out what was going on.

The nanny explained that his mother-in-law, who still had the house key, came in while she was working and fired her.

"I was about to call her when she showed up and said a convoluted story like how I hired an incompetent nanny, etc. etc," the man wrote.

After she refused to leave the house and threatened to call child services, the man called the police, who charged the mother-in-law with trespassing.

"I know my MIL is grieving the loss of her daughter," the man acknowledged, "I am too. But she crossed the line when she disregarded my wishes."


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Research has shown that grief has negative cognitive effects, which can influence how people behave.

As the man acknowledged in his post, not only is he grieving the loss of his wife and mother of his child, but his mother-in-law is also grieving the loss of her daughter.

According to the American Brain Foundation, such grief can trigger primal defense mechanisms that can affect the way we operate, which may lead us to do things we wouldn't normally do, including behavioral regression. In this case, faced with the trauma of losing her own daughter, the mother-in-law may have seen herself as her granddaughter's mother.

However, as one person in the comments put it, "Everyone has the right to grieve but no one, no matter who they are, has the right to weaponize that grief and use it to hold you hostage."


Experts don't suggest cross-nursing, which is the act of breastfeeding another person's baby, as it's not always healthy to do so — especially without permission.

“Human milk is a bodily fluid, and cross-nursing can spread diseases,” Jennifer Wider, M.D., told Women's Health

Further, as the man's post suggested, his daughter may not have been getting the nutrients she needed as he noticed she wasn't feeding enough on formula.


Grief is powerful, all-encompassing and life-changing, and it's always a good idea to seek professional help to work through bereavement. Though the man wrote in his post that he's exploring legal options, the family may benefit from seeking counseling together to figure out the best way to move forward.

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Jonathan Alfano is a writer who focuses on news and entertainment topics.