Want to have more babies? How about healthier babies? Well, who doesn’t? (I refer to the “healthier babies” question because honestly, we don’t all want more kids!)
But if you do, a new study out reports one way you can accomplish this…and it’s
Live next to your mother-in-law!
Yes, you did read that right.
A new study out of Sheffield University suggests that proximity to your mother-in-law is invaluable. Dr. Virpi Lummaa studied 300 years’ worth of records up until the year 2000 and found that moms who live close to their mothers-in-law were less likely to have babies who died in infancy. In addition, “sons and daughters married younger if their mothers were alive, they also had more children and had smaller gaps in time between each birth.”
Now let’s take into account the fact that these results were based on church records from farming communities in Finland. Still, I can see the benefits, but also the hazards.
On one hand, having someone to go to for advice is invaluable. In those hazy, sleep-deprived days, a mother-in-law can be a godsend. Having someone who can come over and watch the baby while you shower or sleep feels like nothing short of miraculous, but and big, huge, alarming but coming up here… that said mother-in-law needs to be sane, helpful, and pleasant. Too often, we’ve encountered those MILs who are jealous, judgmental, and just horrific to be around which can and do make their daughter-in law’s life a living hell.
Understandably, 300 years ago if you lived on a farm in Finland, you might be much better off having your mother-in-law around, but what about if you’re a city gal raising her baby in 2012?
The situation varies greatly, and there are many a folk who say the only thing that saved their sanity and their marriage was to move away from in-laws. Still, many of our readers do say their mother-in-law is wonderful and they couldn’t imagine life without them. Of course, judging from the many comments here, the majority of you certainly do not and actually have sheer horror stories surrounding your “dear old mother-in-law”.
To sum it all up, you know your own mother-in-law, and this study will either have you shaking your head in agreement or belly laughing like a doped-up hyena.
We tend to think the latter.
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