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Can I keep my children away from my mother-in-law?

Syracuse, NY |

This woman is emotionally abusive to my daughter. My daughter is not my husband's biological child. We have 2 sons together. My husband's mother recently told my 5 year old daughter that her father is not her father (she didn't know before and my husband doesn't want her to know), her brothers are not her brothers and her parents did not know each other until after she was born-He has been my brother's best friend since they were 12 years old. Either way, my 5 year old said she wants to die because she has no family and no one loves her. I do not think this woman should be able to torture my children any further. My husband is only concerned for his MOTHER'S feelings, not that of the children. He doesn't want to hurt her, even though she hurt our children and he is their protector!!!

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Attorney answers 3


I am sorry to hear about your situation. Both you and your husband share custody of your children so if you both agree you have no problem. However, if your husband does not agree you would have to get a court order to stop the visitation.

I would be happy to speak with you about your case and help answer your questions. If you are interested, feel free to call. Additionally, we offer free consultations on the phone so you do not even have to leave your home to get help.

I wish you the best of luck.

Hayley Greenberg
Greenberg & Merola, LLP
Attorneys at Law
521 5th Ave. Ste. 1700
New York, NY 10175
(212) 593-6111, facsimile (516) 887-1720 email
(Additional offices: Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island)


If you and your husband cannot come to an arrangement regarding the mother-in-law, any legal action you attempt to take will likely (should be no surprise here) have a dramatic impact on your marriage circumstances--maybe to a degree more so than the mother-in-laws statements did.

Recommend you:
(1) re-engage with your husband on the matter and attempt to work out an arrangement–[this is the most critical part, if this can’t be done, most of your other options are consigned to low probabilities of success]
(2) speak directly with your mother in law--point out the disruptive nature of her comments and request she stay within her grandma box.
(3) consider family counseling with a therapist/psychologist for you and your husband (covered by many insurance policies)

If all else fails, take Attorney Greenburg’s advice and seek legal counsel.

PLEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU COMMENT/EMAIL/PHONE ME. I am licensed only in the Commonwealth of Virginia. This answer does not make me your lawyer, and neither do follow-up comments and/or emails and/or phone calls. You should not expect me to respond to your further questions if you have not hired me. We would need an a signed agreement in writing before any attorney-client relationship is formed. This answer does not constitute legal advice, and shouldn't be relied on, since each state has different laws, each situation is different and it is inappropriate to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive review of all the facts and documents in play.



We are getting divorced because of his mother. We fight constantly and only about his mother. We had a wonderful relationship until she woke up one morning and decided she was going to control my life to the extent of rearranging my kitchen cupboards after letting herself into my home when my husband and I were out!

Hayley R. Greenberg

Hayley R. Greenberg


If you are getting divorced, this issue can be raised in the divorce proceeding with your attorney.


I'm not a NY attorney, but I do quite a bit of family court work. I think the first step you need to take is to engage in family counseling (not to include your mother-in-law unless recommended by the counselor) for the well being of your daughter and to determine a reasonable approach to handling the issue concerning your mother-in-law.

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