"Oops, the camera broke. Sorry!"
My husband and I moved to a city a few hours away from my family after we got married. Shortly before our first child was born, I bought an Internet-enabled video camera to use as a baby monitor. Out of guilt that my parents don’t live nearby, I allowed them to access the camera through their phones so that they could see their grandchild regularly. This turned out to be a huge mistake. Any time they see something on the camera that they don’t approve of, they let me know. I was endlessly harassed for not putting socks on my son’s feet while he was sleeping, for example. The camera has a feature allowing viewers to talk to us through the camera, so my parents randomly start talking to me or my son when we’re in his room. If my son is throwing a tantrum they will come on and say “Stop that crying!” I’ve told them that I don’t appreciate their interjections and criticism, but it has not stopped. My son is now 2 years old and we have another baby, with another camera in the baby’s room, and I want to end their monitoring us. The problem is that if I change the password and prevent my parents from being able to access the cameras, they will be offended and it will cause World War III. What’s the best way to do it while ruffling as few feathers as possible?
—Living in Big Brother Hell