PSA: Turn Off the Baby Monitor Before You Rant About Guests’ Unsolicited Parenting Advice
A mom on Reddit, who worried she put her foot in her mouth in front of her parents over a baby monitor, is warning others to learn from her mistake.
Whether you're going home for the holidays or your parents come to stay with you, sharing space with loved ones is par for the course this time of year. And no matter how well everyone is getting along, there's bound to be at least one or two moments that are downright tense, awkward, embarrassing, or all of the above. A mom in the Beyond the Bump subreddit recently experienced just that. Writing under the handle Mu_Shu_Fasa, the Redditor explained that she had been griping about her visiting parents' behavior—and they heard it all over the baby monitor.
The original poster (OP) wrote, "I've had my parents staying the past few days which has mostly been fun, except that they seem to be constantly on a mission to overstimulate the baby. And then whenever baby gets grizzly, the immediate 'helpful' advice I get is: 'Oh, she definitely has wind,' 'must have a pain in the tummy, hey?' 'I think she's struggling with some wind,' 'needs to get rid of wind,' 'no, I doubt she's tired, she just has wind.' So, it's been a long day of dealing with a tired, cranky baby."
The OP continued that a few hours after they finally got the little one down to sleep for the night, she went into the bedroom to give her a rollover or dream feed. "As she fed, I was enjoying scrolling this sub and reading the vents from all of you dealing with similarly overstimulated-by-grandparents kids," the OP noted. "Husband came in to join me after a while and I showed him my favorite posts, so that he could enjoy the solidarity. We then quietly chatted during the rest of the feed about how annoying it is to have my parents constantly overstimulating the baby and then blame it on wind every time."
When the baby was done feeding, they put her back down in her bassinet and the OP realized the baby monitor was still on. "We left the parent unit out in the loungeroom where my parents are watching TV," she wrote. "The unit that turns on anytime it picks up sound nearby. Sitting there right next to the parents we were just whinging about."
Mu_Shu_Fasa said her husband was trying to convince her that the sensitivity setting on the parent unit was turned down and they weren't talking loud, so it's possible it didn't turn on. As she wrote the post, the OP said she was "sitting here awkwardly trying to assess whether my parents heard anything and are ignoring me or just reeeeeally interested in the movie they are watching..."
While she didn't reveal whether she learned if her parents had actually heard their conversation, the OP urged other Redditors to learn from her mistake, concluding, "Turn off the monitor if you are going to enjoy a quick vent away from everyone this holiday season."
Fellow parents chimed in, sharing similar stories. Iberostar2u wrote, "I learned this lesson the hard way as well. Last Christmas, my husband and I went to take a nap in our room while my parents relaxed with the baby downstairs. And by 'take a nap,' I mean have sex and by 'our room,' I mean the guest room at their house with the baby monitor in it, and the parent unit turned all the way up in the living room. My mom didn’t mince words—she told me that she went over and turned it off before my dad figured out what was happening. Oops."
Toothfairy87 shared, "About about a month postpartum with my first, I had people over playing board games and went in to check on sleeping bean and ripped the loudest fart ever, and then realized the parent unit was at the table where we were playing games. Luckily it didn’t pick it up, but I was dying laughing at the thought."
A Redditor named HamCat36 described a similar incident that occurred on Thanksgiving: "Was griping about everything and everyone messing with baby while feeding and realized the monitor was on in the kitchen. Exactly where the person we were complaining about happened to be at that moment. Unfortunately for us the volume was on. Pretty sure she heard it all."
But a couple of Redditors encouraged the OP to let it go, if possible. Tquinn04 wrote that she should "own it," if her parents brought it up, writing, "Because you’re not wrong at all. Lots of grandparents are out of touch when it comes to infant care and don’t like to be told differently. 'Yeah, I was talking about you guys in there, because I’m the parent, not you. When you don’t listen to me, then I’m the one stuck dealing with a cranky baby off her schedule. You guys get to go back home after.'"
And Jamie1983 shared, "I wouldn’t feel too bad about it. There are way worse things you could have said!"
Here's hoping the OP's adrenaline has stopped pumping, the situation has been smoothed over, and sharing her experience ends up saving plenty of other parents from similar potentially awkward moments and stress.