My Child Does Not Seem To Want Me
I am a first time mother to an amazing 7 month baby girl and recently re-joined work full time.
I love my work but had initially planned to take a year-long break to raise her. However, due to financial difficulties, I had to rejoin when she was 5 months old.
I live in a joint family with my in-laws, so when I am not around she is looked after by a baby-sitter who takes care of her baths and feeding and by my Mother-in-law who plays with her. Initially she used to be overjoyed to see me when I used to rush home from work. We used to spend a lot of time together. But, I guess for the past 5 or 6 days, she refuses to come to me.
She now prefers to be with my Mother or Father in law, who she didn’t get along with much earlier. She now raises her arms to welcome them. Although my in-laws show outward sympathy, I believe they are quite happy that she has chosen them over me. They used to say that that is what they intend to do. Like in a game of hockey or cricket, where there are two teams, they have neatly divided themselves, their son and my baby into one team and me in the adversary team. This attitude, to say the least, is immature and harmful for the baby.
Earlier, and I still do on holidays and weekends, I used to give her a bath, feed her, play with her, take her out and comfort her, but because I am at work the bathing and feeding aspects are taken care of by the baby sitter.
However, I still try to teach her new things, comfort her and feed her in the evenings. But I am so heartbroken that she refuses to be with me. I know I am supposed to love her and not expect her to love me back, but it is so hard to do precisely that. And my in-laws just don’t let me spend time with her. Always they want to take her away and she is more than willing to oblige.
I have had, and still do, a troubled relationship with my mother (where she has always been distant and cold with me) and I had always aspired for a warm relationship with my child. But she doesn’t want me.
I don’t know what to do. Please help.