The following sentence appears in lines 12-14 of chapter XX of Lingua latina per se illustrata. Familia Romana:
Sī māter īnfantem suum ipsa alere nōn potest sīve non vult, īnfāns ab aliā muliere alitur, quae ēi in locō mātris est.
I'm trying to understand why the dative pronoun eī, which I think refers to the little child (īnfāns), is used. Can this be interpreted as a dative of possession? The idea would more or less be that the nurse (this alia mulier) is in the role of his or her mother (in place of his or her mother) to the child. I believe there probably is a better way to interpret this usage of dative. Can anyone explain it?