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“I Told My Daughter-in-Law That Her Daughter Will Grow Up Depressed if She Doesn’t Dress Her in Frills and Tutus!”

We’ve come across some bizarre mother-in-law behaviour in the past, but this takes the interfering and overbearing stereotype to a whole new level. What’s more, she is totally oblivious to any wrongdoing. In fact, when she shared her issue recently with Redditors she did so clearly expecting to be vindicated.

Some background, I(f65) raised 4 children. 4 beautiful, happy, well-adjusted children. 3 daughters and a son (m40). He is married to his wife J (f40). They have a 3-year-old daughter. J doesn’t wear feminine clothing except for on occasions. She suffers from depression and has for her entire life. I have noticed that she chooses plain clothing to her daughter too now. T shirts and jeans and natural colors. She admits that she mostly shops at the boys department because the clothes there are “cooler”. When I buy the usual tutus, frills with beautiful happy motifs I have noticed she only put these clothes when I’m around once and then never again. Yesterday the little girl had brown and white checkered muslin shirt, black rolled up jeans and adidas.

I was a bit pissed so I asked her why she always chooses these clothes for her and she just said that she liked these clothes. So I told her that I have raised 3 beautiful daughters and they grew up having colorful beautiful dresses and skirts etc in all colors and they all went to become happy and successful adults. She just smirked and said that her daughter was fine and that when she’s a bit older she will start choosing her own clothes anyway. So I told her that she was going to make her daughter depressed like her. Even her room is gray and green with no colorful toys. J laughed and said that I didn’t need to worry.

Then today my son called and said I was out of line and I should apologize. All I did was worry about that little girl. People often express themselves in what they wear and since J is depressed, it shows on her clothing. Now she is inflicting that on her daughter.

Tell me if I was wrong? What is wrong with pink and frills?

People in the comments section were only too willing to tell her she was wrong!

“I told her that she was going to make her daughter depressed like her.”

YTA. This comment has no backing in science. You completely made that up. You are using your daughter-in-law’s diagnosis as a cudgel to try to punish her so she will raise her daughters the way you approve. This is appalling behavior and if you want to be part of your granddaughter’s life, you will stop it immediately. Apologize and never do this again. You cannot control your granddaughters outfits, and you should stop trying. (UteLawyer)


Buying your GD clothes you like is fine. Diagnosing her with depression 15 years in advance because of her clothes is getting you pretty close. If you stop where you are and drop it, you’ll stay clear of AH territory for now. At least her mom has her wear them when you’re around — she’s meeting you halfway. (FrostyKiwi8061)

People were flabbergasted at the woman’s ignorance about how mental health works.

YTA, are you for real? First of all, how dare you blame depression on something as so simple as clothing choices. Some people just like “plain” clothes. I don’t even think the issue here is that they are plain, you mean casual. Not elaborate dresses and frills. Feminine beauty and confidence is based on way more than that. Women can be proud and happy in a potato sack (if they want to wear that of course). (ninjasttarkid)

And if bright clothes make you successful, I have two words….Steve Jobs. (Historical-Goal-3786)

Wow, SUCH a huge AH! Clothes do not cause depression you stupid woman! (OneLessDay517)


So let me get this straight: What she likes doesn’t matter, but what you like DOES matter? You really think depression is caused by…not wearing frilly dresses? Did you enter a time machine from the 1580’s? I think you need to speak with an actual professional, show them this reddit thread, and ask what they think. I’m sure it will involve you being a narrow minded woman who is completely ignorant on mental health. YTA. If you were my MIL I would not want your negative, presuming, materialistic self anywhere near my young impressionable child. You really have some nerve. (slackerchic)

YTA – How you even need to ask if YTA is telling, how are you this oblivious? You think a 3 year old not wearing a dress will make her depressed? My parents raised to happy kids as well, and neither of us give a crap about “pretty clothes” (SkyneMCP)


YTA – You told your DIL that she is going to single-handedly cause her daughter to have lifelong mental health issues because she doesn’t dress her in… tutus? Absolutely uncalled for (and WRONG). (Latter-Shower-9888)

Others suggested that the woman’s issue was more about her granddaughter not dressing ‘girly’ enough for her liking.

YTA. Don’t impose your outdated notion of gender norms on NOT YOUR child.

Also I know incredibly depressed people who dress like rainbows and the happiest goths … (StayingSexyDGM)


YTA – tenner says that if was your grandson you’d have no issue if he was dressed in the same outfit. Has zero to do with ‘happiness’ and everything to do with your own biases about gender and how girls ‘should’ dress. (Griffin_El)

But one user sums it up perfectly with their comment:

Yta – nothing wrong with pink and frills, but what’s wrong with neutrals and checkers?

That’s not your daughter and I fucking wish depression could be cured by a tutu. (Electrical-Bat-7311)


How would you deal with a mother-in-law like this?

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Jolene enjoys writing, sharing and connecting with other like-minded women online – it also gives her the perfect excuse to ignore Mount-Washmore until it threatens to bury her family in an avalanche of Skylander T-shirts and Frozen Pyjama pants. (No one ever knows where the matching top is!) Likes: Reading, cooking, sketching, dancing (preferably with a Sav Blanc in one hand), social media, and sitting down on a toilet seat that one of her children hasn’t dripped, splashed or sprayed on. Dislikes: Writing pretentious crap about herself in online bio’s and refereeing arguments amongst her offspring.

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