Losing a kid is the worst thing that can happen to a parent. The anguish and sadness are unimaginable, leaving families crushed, stunned, and unable to handle all of the emotions that accompany such a devastating tragedy. In this story due to the MIL’s ignorance the couple had to bear an unimaginable loss. Read the story and let us know if the couple is right with their decision.
My MIL was guilty in the death of her grandchild, my daughter. She was 2 years old at the time and my husband and me, we let MIL babysit her while we were busy with job-related things. It was summertime and they were staying in MIL’s house that has a pond next to it. My daughter loved water, bathtime was her favorite time of day. They were playing at the edge of the pond and then MIL remembered she had to take clothes out of the dryer and she left a 2-year-old alone next to the quite large body of water. My daughter’s childlike curiosity plus her love for water resulted in her getting into the deep part of the pond and drowning. All because MIL considered clothes in the dryer an important enough reason to leave a toddler unsupervised.
Then she realized what has happened, she started to panic and call for help. Her neighbor heard her, they got into the pond and called an ambulance but it was too late. Imagine what it’s like for a parent to come to the person you trusted your child with and they tell you your child is dead. And MIL was begging us not to involve police into this, she kept repeating it was an accident and she ”doesn’t know how it could have happened”, ”was only gone for a moment”, ”feels even worse than we do” and ”calling the police won’t bring her back”. We did call the police, of course, and she was charged with criminal negligence and sentenced to 3 years in prison which, in my opinion, was too light of a punishment.
Now recently MIL was released from prison and my husband was the first person she looked for contact with. He never once visited MIL while she was imprisoned. Unintentionally but she did cause the death of our child by neglecting her duties as a babysitter. Doesn’t matter that she served her sentence, neither I or my husband will ever forgive her for this. Neither has she asked for forgiveness, all she gave us were excuses and more excuses. In the courtroom, my husband told her she’s not his mother anymore, that she’s dead to him and that he never wants to see her face again. Our marriage was damaged too, we were depressed, we fought a lot, there were times when we were on the brink of divorce. We separated for a while, I left for another country thinking that this is it for us, however, my husband came to look for me and we managed to save our family and continue our life together.
I couldn’t bring myself to have any more children for a long time but eventually, I got pregnant again and last summer we welcomed our son, he’s 9 months old now. Obviously, we weren’t going to tell MIL we’re parents again but she saw us walking with a baby stroller and realized that once more she has a grandchild. So she tried to get in the contact with my husband. First, she reproached him for not visiting her, cried about how hard it was for her to spend all those years behind bars, that she shouldn’t have been in the prison because she’s too old for that, how could he do this to his own mother, how could he abandon her. Then she was like ”But I saw you have a new baby, I’m so glad I have a grandchild again!” And then she went on about is it a boy or a girl, when will she be able to see them and meet them because she wants to take care of them so much.
My husband told her immediately that she doesn’t have anything, this is our child, ours only. Our son doesn’t have a grandmother, we’ll be telling him this as he grows up. And he will never ever in a million years be anywhere around her. We’re 100% on the same page about this. The loss of our daughter still hurts and we’re going to do the impossible to protect our son from her. He doesn’t need an irresponsible grandmother who would likely endanger his life just like she did with his sister.
MIL was shocked to hear this and began to wail about us being so evil and cruel towards her, that we’re going to hold that against her forever even though she paid for it and we cannot be so heartless to prevent her from seeing her grandchild. But what was she thinking? What was she hoping for? That we’re really going to let her around our baby? That we’ll ever trust her with babysitting again? Honestly, I’m not sure if I can leave my son with any babysitter. I don’t trust babysitters anymore, because if a grandmother can be careless enough to let a child die, who knows what could an unrelated person do.
So my husband told her firmly that she’ll have no access to the baby and he doesn’t want to talk to her either so now that she’s out of the prison, she should do something useful with her life and leave us alone. MIL wasn’t having it. That evening she came to our house, asking to see her grandchild again. We didn’t let her come in, obviously, and MIL got mad, claiming that as a grandmother, she has rights to meet her grandchild. We told her that she lost all her rights to our children when she let our daughter drown. If a trust is broken, it cannot be repaired and there are some things that just cannot be forgiven.
MIL then told us that she’ll go to court and she’ll demand legal permission to meet the baby. I’m not sure if there is such a thing but if it’s true, I highly doubt she’ll get it considering her criminal record. If we need to go to court and prove she’s not the type of grandmother you should let around your child, we’ll do it. If she comes back again, we’ll call the police. If we need to leave this country and go live somewhere else just to be away from her, we’ll do it too. Nothing’s impossible.
I’m amazed at the shamelessness of hers. She knows very well she tore apart our lives 3 years ago. No parent should bury their child, but we had to because of her and now she comes to us as if she’s the best relative ever, as if nothing ever happened.
How would you handle such a situation ? any advice
Here are a few comments on the story where it was originally posted: