AITA for banning my sil from babysitting after she put breastmilk in my child's ears
"I have a 7 year old daughter, Rose. Rose is prone to ear infections.
"She had a double ear infection recently and couldn’t go to school on Friday because she had a low grade fever. I had to go to work and couldn’t get a babysitter so my SIL offered to keep her for me.
"Everything seemed to go well until I picked Rose up and my SIL told me she had put breastmilk (she has a 12 week old) in Rose’s ears to help with the ear infection. She even offered to send some home in a dropper bottle so I can keep giving it to her. She claims it’s a great remedy and that Rose was already starting to feel better. I couldn’t believe that she did this to my child without asking. I yelled at her for it, we argued, and I told her she will no longer be able to babysit/be around Rose unsupervised. Now Rose is upset that she can’t go to her auntie’s house anymore and my brother called me to say that I upset his wife, she was just trying to help, and that I overreacted. This is a woman putting her bodily fluids in my child’s ear. I think I have a right to be upset. It seems that everyone is against me on this so I wanted to know if I was the a--hole for banning her from babysitting or being near Rose unsupervised."
How the Reddit Community Reacted ... And a Stunning Revelation
The post itself garnered thousands of upvotes and comments. Initially, some of the commenters had declared OP "the a--hole" because they believed in the medicinal powers of human breastmilk.
However, the post was soon overwhelmed with Redditors declaring it didn't matter whether or not breastmilk was medicinal or not -- it was actually a post highlighting the need for parental consent when it came to a child's health.
As one commenter summarized: "Reddit is wild. Any other post where a family member babysitter gives a kid baby Tylenol without permission and those people are AHs, but according to Reddit you overreacted because it’s breast milk this time. NTA [not the a--hole]. Babysitters shouldn’t be giving any medicine or home remedies without permission. No matter how normal and fine people apparently think it is."
Maybe ask your nurse SIL or any of these commenters for a single supporting study. I am a nurse. Breastmilk is not an antibiotic. Your SIL put her own bodily fluids in your kids ear without permission.
However, the real revelations were in OP's replies.
"She says she does it with her other kids (this is her 4th kid) and that she recommends it to her patients’ parents all the time (she’s a pediatric nurse)," OP wrote in response to one commenter.
The reveal stunned many a Redditor, with one writing in shock that SIL was a nurse, "She's terrible at her job."
While others simply, once again, placed the focus on the science of it all. As one commenter noted, "Maybe ask your nurse SIL or any of these commenters for a single supporting study. I am a nurse. Breastmilk is not an antibiotic. Your SIL put her own bodily fluids in your kids ear without permission. Even if you wanted to do it with your own breastmilk (at least then there's some argument about similar familial antibodies etc) it's not going to 'cure' any infection, it's breastmilk. Breastmilk is not some magical fix all."
When it came to all the free online medical advice, OP finally wrote (not without raising a few eyebrows): "I called her pediatrician. He basically said that it can help and the way my SIL did it shouldn’t be harmful."