My Toddler ALWAYS Chooses My MIL Over Me And I’m Devastated

"He always chooses her over me in any situation."
grandmother calms a crying child
Ekaterina Vasileva-Bagler via Getty Images
grandmother calms a crying child

Toddlers can have a new favourite parent every day of the week, some days it’s mum and other days it’s dad.

They change their mind constantly whether it’s about being obsessed with a certain food one minute and hating it the next. That’s just how they are! They’re learning to use their voice and understanding their own preferences.

But what do you do when your toddler prefers to be with your mother in law over you, the parent?

One Mumsnet poster revealed she had been extremely upset as her toddler would always choose her mother in law rather than her.

Asking for advice, they wrote: “My son is 16 months now and for some time now he seems to prefer my mother in law over me. I have returned to work, only doing part time, and live with my mother in law who looks after my son.”

She explained that she has a good relationship with her mother in law, but when her son sees his grandma he doesn’t want his mum.

In fact, the toddler is so close to her MIL that whenever she comes into the room, he cries wanting grandma to pick him up, and no longer wants her.

“He always chooses her over me in any situation. I try my best to remain positive although on some days I am left feeling incredibly upset and insecure - I don’t want to spoil my relationship with mum in law, she has actually done a lot for me and I literally have my work cut in half, as she’s so helpful,” said the poster.

She revealed that she did tell her mother in law a few times how she felt and that she knows her MIL isn’t doing it on purpose.

“Can I please ask if anyone is also experiencing this and can offer me any advice? Is this just a phase that my son will grow out of? My son is so young yet but I worry this will turn into a long term thing... I don’t work long hours and there at home a lot to look after my son, but he always prefers his grandma over other mothers feel penalised for returning to work?,” she questioned.

Other parents were quick to reassure, one said that kids are fickle at this age but it’s not something that would be long term.

Another said their son would always choose their mum over them, and this made them happy as their relationship was incredibly close.

But one person related a bit more: “Don’t feel bad op. He loves you more than your mil, it’s just that he is constantly with her and maybe a security for him.

“He sees you leave and come back while she’s always there so to him he feels secure. It will pass. For a long time my ds preferred his nanny over me, but its passed now and he’s a mummy’s boy.”

According to resource Alpha Mom, this is actually a very common phase and usually down to a change in routine: “This a super common, weird little toddler phase where they inexplicably start preferring one parent or caregiver.”

So, if you’re going through the same thing, it’s not personal and it’s not forever!