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RoseRed135

Do you feel your grandkids' parents take advantage of you?

30 posts in this topic

Maybe they always pick the GC (grandchildren) up from your house an hour or so late. Or perhaps they expect you to provide all diapers, wipes, baby food, etc. when watching their baby. Or overnight stays turn into 2 or 3 nights b/c they "have to" leave the kids w/ you for this/that reason. Or they frequently call last minute saying they "desperately" need you to babysit.

Or maybe you're a custodial GP and your problem is that the parents don't show up on time for visits or don't come at all, leaving you to deal w/ GC's disappointment.

Or... In short, perhaps you feel your GC's parents are taking advantage of you? If so, how - and what have you tried to do about it, if anything? Also, if you've found a successful solution for these kinds of problems or have an idea for one, please let us know.

 

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Note from RoseRed: This post has been moved here from an older thread in this same forum...

combo1982

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I tried to start a new topic, but it wouldn't let me, so I'm going to piggyback on this one. New grandson is 3 weeks old and he's their first. DD and SIL live an hour away. I have been informed that they want anyone who babysits to come to their house "because that's where all the baby's stuff is." I don't mind to drive to their home to babysit occasionally, in fact, I was just at their house for 9 hours over the weekend babysitting. But I don't see a problem with them bringing him to my house if they're wanting me to babysit for them. I'm not sure what "stuff" it is that they can't bring it to my house. Some diapers, wipes, clothes, bottles, and his little portable bassinet. Am I missing something here? I have been asked to babysit for 2 days next month, so I think they are expecting me to drive an hour in the morning, then an hour back home, then an hour the next morning and an hour back home. I love the little guy and want to be as hands-on as possible with him, but I'm already feeling taken advantage of and it's not even been a month. I realize it's their baby and their rules, but has anyone else had this situation come up?

Edited by RoseRed135
to add "Note" on top

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Note from RoseRed: ImpishMom's reply to combo1982 had been copied & pasted here from that same older thread mentioned above...

ImpishMom

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3 hours ago, combo1982 said:

I tried to start a new topic, but it wouldn't let me, so I'm going to piggyback on this one. New grandson is 3 weeks old and he's their first. DD and SIL live an hour away. I have been informed that they want anyone who babysits to come to their house "because that's where all the baby's stuff is." I don't mind to drive to their home to babysit occasionally, in fact, I was just at their house for 9 hours over the weekend babysitting. But I don't see a problem with them bringing him to my house if they're wanting me to babysit for them. I'm not sure what "stuff" it is that they can't bring it to my house. Some diapers, wipes, clothes, bottles, and his little portable bassinet. Am I missing something here? I have been asked to babysit for 2 days next month, so I think they are expecting me to drive an hour in the morning, then an hour back home, then an hour the next morning and an hour back home. I love the little guy and want to be as hands-on as possible with him, but I'm already feeling taken advantage of and it's not even been a month. I realize it's their baby and their rules, but has anyone else had this situation come up?

Generally speaking, it's almost always easier for someone to come to the baby, vs pack up baby and take them somewhere. Even an hour's drive can end up much longer, if you need to pull over for baby. Plus, if they're getting ready for work, they've got the usual morning routine, plus packing up baby, plus the drive there and back, all before work. It's a lot. That's two hours in one go, each way, vs your 1 hr, babysitting, 1 hour.

That being said, if it doesn't work for you, decline. You're allowed to say no, it doesn't work for you.

Perhaps asking if you could spend the night over might be an option?

Edited by RoseRed135

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@combo1982 - Hi again! IMO (in my opinion), Imp has given you some good advice.

As the "nanny granny" to my 2 DGD for several years, I generally find it easier to watch them at their house. And, of course, it has often been easier for  my DD/their mom that way, especially during the baby years, for the reasons Imp gave. However, I only live about 15 minutes away from them by car, so perhaps not a comparable situation.

If ever DD is going to be out late or needs me there early in the morning, I sleep over, as Imp suggests. But I realize that might not work for you or for DD and SIL. If you're interested, it's worth asking about though, IMO.

Another thought - would it be possible for you to duplicate some of baby's "stuff" at your house? Maybe, at least, diapers & wipes? Would DD and SIL be ok w/ that (some parents aren't)? Would you? Would it make it easier for them? That's something you might mention, also. But, of course, please be prepared to accept it graciously if they decline.

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1 hour ago, RoseRed135 said:

@combo1982 - Hi again! IMO (in my opinion), Imp has given you some good advice.

As the "nanny granny" to my 2 DGD for several years, I generally find it easier to watch them at their house. And, of course, it has often been easier for  my DD/their mom that way, especially during the baby years, for the reasons Imp gave. However, I only live about 15 minutes away from them by car, so perhaps not a comparable situation.

If ever DD is going to be out late or needs me there early in the morning, I sleep over, as Imp suggests. But I realize that might not work for you or for DD and SIL. If you're interested, it's worth asking about though, IMO.

Another thought - would it be possible for you to duplicate some of baby's "stuff" at your house? Maybe, at least, diapers & wipes? Would DD and SIL be ok w/ that (some parents aren't)? Would you? Would it make it easier for them? That's something you might mention, also. But, of course, please be prepared to accept it graciously if they decline.

The problem I see is the travel time, if they're going to work. It would mean driving an hour, drop off, then commute another hour to work (at least), then another 2+ hrs at the end of the day. Not many folks could handle that, esp two days in a row. Whereas for @combo1982, it's an hour each way. That's why I suspect it simply wouldn't work, even if combo had baby gear.

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6 hours ago, RoseRed135 said:

@combo1982 - Hi again! IMO (in my opinion), Imp has given you some good advice.

As the "nanny granny" to my 2 DGD for several years, I generally find it easier to watch them at their house. And, of course, it has often been easier for  my DD/their mom that way, especially during the baby years, for the reasons Imp gave. However, I only live about 15 minutes away from them by car, so perhaps not a comparable situation.

If ever DD is going to be out late or needs me there early in the morning, I sleep over, as Imp suggests. But I realize that might not work for you or for DD and SIL. If you're interested, it's worth asking about though, IMO.

Another thought - would it be possible for you to duplicate some of baby's "stuff" at your house? Maybe, at least, diapers & wipes? Would DD and SIL be ok w/ that (some parents aren't)? Would you? Would it make it easier for them? That's something you might mention, also. But, of course, please be prepared to accept it graciously if they decline.

I, on the other hand, will only babysit in our home. I want to be doing my work/chores/cooking where I have my routine. My husband will go to YDDs to babysit, but she's the only one of five who has ever asked for babysitting away from our home. We have all the stuff we need - crib, high chair, clothes, diapers, toys. It's far easier for us.

Too late or too early for our kids? Way too late or too early for us, plus we sleep in our bed, together. Babysitting is a huge favor to our kids - the least they can do, in our opinions is make it as easy as possible. I don't like to babysit between 9 months and 2.5-3 years, so I won't, but my husband will if he is asked.

Neither of us like our grands to stay overnight before 3-4 years old. IF I remember correctly, nobody under 3ish has overnighted (other than the one who was born living here).  Preferences! 

ETA: The persons doing the favors can have boundaries too.

Me too.

Edited by JanelleK

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54 minutes ago, JanelleK said:

I, on the other hand, will only babysit in our home. I want to be doing my work/chores/cooking where I have my routine. My husband will go to YDDs to babysit, but she's the only one of five who has ever asked for babysitting away from our home. We have all the stuff we need - crib, high chair, clothes, diapers, toys. It's far easier for us.

Too late or too early for our kids? Way too late or too early for us, plus we sleep in our bed, together. Babysitting is a huge favor to our kids - the least they can do, in our opinions is make it as easy as possible. I don't like to babysit between 9 months and 2.5-3 years, so I won't, but my husband will if he is asked.

Neither of us like our grands to stay overnight before 3-4 years old. IF I remember correctly, nobody under 3ish has overnighted (other than the one who was born living here).  Preferences!

ETA: The persons doing the favors can have boundaries too.

To the bolded: absolutely!

I'm just seeing why the parents would request that combo makes the drive, b/c it would be literally half the travel time (if not less, depending on where work is for them).

I think I'd curl up and die somewhere if I had to add 4 hrs of travel time on to a full day of work, 2 days in a row, b/c it would likely result in little to no sleep for those days. They have a 3 wk old, chances are, sleep is in short supply as is, without adding in that sort of travel.

But, again, if it doesn't work for combo, then she ought to decline. 

Myself, I'd call out sick, or pay a local sitter before driving 4+ hrs a day.

ETA: given that driving while sleep deprived has a similar impact as driving drunk, I wouldn't risk it.

Edited by ImpishMom

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Am I understanding that you have been asked to babysit two days in a row?  Is it not possible to spend the night even if you need a room?  Are they not willing for you to stay over for a single night?

You are allowed to have boundaries also.  If this just won't work for you, you are allowed to say sorry, that just won't work.

 

 

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On 10/16/2017 at 6:26 PM, RoseRed135 said:

Note from RoseRed: This post has been moved here from an older thread in this same forum...

combo1982

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I tried to start a new topic, but it wouldn't let me, so I'm going to piggyback on this one. New grandson is 3 weeks old and he's their first. DD and SIL live an hour away. I have been informed that they want anyone who babysits to come to their house "because that's where all the baby's stuff is." I don't mind to drive to their home to babysit occasionally, in fact, I was just at their house for 9 hours over the weekend babysitting. But I don't see a problem with them bringing him to my house if they're wanting me to babysit for them. I'm not sure what "stuff" it is that they can't bring it to my house. Some diapers, wipes, clothes, bottles, and his little portable bassinet. Am I missing something here? I have been asked to babysit for 2 days next month, so I think they are expecting me to drive an hour in the morning, then an hour back home, then an hour the next morning and an hour back home. I love the little guy and want to be as hands-on as possible with him, but I'm already feeling taken advantage of and it's not even been a month. I realize it's their baby and their rules, but has anyone else had this situation come up?

I haven't had this situation come up because my DD knows that I don't want to babysit and that when I do it it is a favor to her.

Anonymous poster hash: d2b5b...b02

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The babysitting issue is so difficult. I wish society would recognize that babysitting is work. A babysitter should get paid, have the ability to say sorry I'm not available without repercussions. Or to say I can only babysit under X conditions, such as at a specific location. I like to keep childcare at a professional level. I am hiring a person to do a service with very specific requirements. The person can then say that they will only take the job with their specific set of requirements. This is why I never have family babysit. Suddenly a business deal turns into a relationship minefield.

I also hate it when family ask if they can babysit my children. This doesn't make sense to me. In that situation they are usually asking for a playdate under the guise of them doing me a favor. 

Unfortunately Anonymous has entered the family babysitting minefield. I think your best bet is to start as you mean to continue. Let them know that you are not able to babysit at their house due to the distance or whatever you are able and happy to do. Tell them honestly and happily that you are happy to help them out if they are able to bring baby to your house or whatever you are willing to do. But then remember that they will likely find a babysitter that works for their needs, and there is nothing wrong with that. They will likely not have you babysit. They are not being spiteful or playing baby keep away if they find a childcare provider that will babysit the way they prefer. You are not spiteful or mean to decide your limits on doing a favor for your daughter. But the natural consequence is that you will not likely be as hands on with your grandchild-this is not a threat or a punishment it is jus a natural consequence to living an hour a way,

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17 hours ago, darkprincess said:

The babysitting issue is so difficult. I wish society would recognize that babysitting is work. A babysitter should get paid, have the ability to say sorry I'm not available without repercussions. Or to say I can only babysit under X conditions, such as at a specific location. I like to keep childcare at a professional level. I am hiring a person to do a service with very specific requirements. The person can then say that they will only take the job with their specific set of requirements. This is why I never have family babysit. Suddenly a business deal turns into a relationship minefield.

I also hate it when family ask if they can babysit my children. This doesn't make sense to me. In that situation they are usually asking for a playdate under the guise of them doing me a favor. 

Unfortunately Anonymous has entered the family babysitting minefield. I think your best bet is to start as you mean to continue. Let them know that you are not able to babysit at their house due to the distance or whatever you are able and happy to do. Tell them honestly and happily that you are happy to help them out if they are able to bring baby to your house or whatever you are willing to do. But then remember that they will likely find a babysitter that works for their needs, and there is nothing wrong with that. They will likely not have you babysit. They are not being spiteful or playing baby keep away if they find a childcare provider that will babysit the way they prefer. You are not spiteful or mean to decide your limits on doing a favor for your daughter. But the natural consequence is that you will not likely be as hands on with your grandchild-this is not a threat or a punishment it is jus a natural consequence to living an hour a way,

Yes, simply come out and ask if you (general) can take the kids here or there to do this or that-

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On 10/16/2017 at 6:26 PM, RoseRed135 said:

Note from RoseRed: This post has been moved here from an older thread in this same forum...

combo1982

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I tried to start a new topic, but it wouldn't let me, so I'm going to piggyback on this one. New grandson is 3 weeks old and he's their first. DD and SIL live an hour away. I have been informed that they want anyone who babysits to come to their house "because that's where all the baby's stuff is." I don't mind to drive to their home to babysit occasionally, in fact, I was just at their house for 9 hours over the weekend babysitting. But I don't see a problem with them bringing him to my house if they're wanting me to babysit for them. I'm not sure what "stuff" it is that they can't bring it to my house. Some diapers, wipes, clothes, bottles, and his little portable bassinet. Am I missing something here? I have been asked to babysit for 2 days next month, so I think they are expecting me to drive an hour in the morning, then an hour back home, then an hour the next morning and an hour back home. I love the little guy and want to be as hands-on as possible with him, but I'm already feeling taken advantage of and it's not even been a month. I realize it's their baby and their rules, but has anyone else had this situation come up?

@combo1982 - Have you gotten clarification from the parents on this or discussed it any further?

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On ‎2017‎-‎10‎-‎16 at 4:24 PM, RoseRed135 said:

Maybe they always pick the GC (grandchildren) up from your house an hour or so late. Or perhaps they expect you to provide all diapers, wipes, baby food, etc. when watching their baby. Or overnight stays turn into 2 or 3 nights b/c they "have to" leave the kids w/ you for this/that reason. Or they frequently call last minute saying they "desperately" need you to babysit.

Or maybe you're a custodial GP and your problem is that the parents don't show up on time for visits or don't come at all, leaving you to deal w/ GC's disappointment.

Or... In short, perhaps you feel your GC's parents are taking advantage of you? If so, how - and what have you tried to do about it, if anything? Also, if you've found a successful solution for these kinds of problems or have an idea for one, please let us know.

 

I count my blessings that my kids carried with them (to their adulthood), good life practices, taught to them (by moi), so times and dates and things were almost always respected and abided by.

Overnight stays were always organized ahead of time... i.e., drop-off time, pick-up time, etc, etc. As for emergency or short notice babysitting, I've been there and done that (plenty) in my day, but DK's had emergency babysitters at their disposal (close to their homes) for those true times of need.

Milk was always supplied (breast or bottle), and as for diapers, one daughter used cloth, while the other used Pampers, and being that this old nana was as old-fashioned as she was, I always had a supply of cloth diapers, pins, rubber pants, and a diaper pail on-hand (just in case), though oldest daughter was always good about packing a well-stocked diaper bag for me whenever I had the kids at my house.

Funny story to share. There were times where I'd call and tell daughters not to worry about stopping by to pick-up their children if it was getting late, because I enjoyed having the kids at our house, especially once they were older and more independent. And extra night at grandma and grandpas house was just as much fun and good for the grands as it was for me and DH!

By the way, grandpa never changed diapers. Not on our kids... not on the grands.

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3 minutes ago, BalloonPants said:

By the way, grandpa never changed diapers. Not on our kids... not on the grands.

LOL! My DH was basically the same way. Except that w/ the GC, I insisted that he change a few diapers, especially when they were both in diapers at the same time (close in age). I generally watched them at YDD's house, so on those occasions when they were at ours, i figured he could pitch in a little. And he did. Maybe I should have put my foot down about it when we were young parents. But, of course, as a GF he couldn't use, "But I work all week!" as an excuse not to (he was retired by the time the grands came along0. :)

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40 minutes ago, RoseRed135 said:

LOL! My DH was basically the same way. Except that w/ the GC, I insisted that he change a few diapers, especially when they were both in diapers at the same time (close in age). I generally watched them at YDD's house, so on those occasions when they were at ours, i figured he could pitch in a little. And he did. Maybe I should have put my foot down about it when we were young parents. But, of course, as a GF he couldn't use, "But I work all week!" as an excuse not to (he was retired by the time the grands came along0. :)

LOL, RR! Talk about a common pattern here with the older generation. :) 

My own dad was the same, no diapers, not ever, probably why my mom taught me at such a young age to help with diaper changing.

With my own children, for those times when I'd go out for a couple of hours in the evening, I'd have to make sure the kids were freshly changed just prior to exiting the house, and when I'd arrive back home again after visiting, I'd go straight into the baby room to check and change pants. Even had it been disposables in our house, the answer would have been the same, uh-ugh, absolutely not, out of the question, no way. :) 

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Posted (edited)

Quote

By the way, grandpa never changed diapers. Not on our kids... not on the grands.

My dad never changed diapers for anyone. xH was a fully actualized parent, a baby whisperer...he did whatever was needed when the kids were little. DH was a fully involved dad and grandad. Just did what needed doing. DS does whatever needs doing as well...he has 5 kids...

Edited by Mame925
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3 minutes ago, Mame925 said:

My dad never changed diapers for anyone.

I'm convinced that was the way back in the day. In fact, to be perfectly honest, I don't remember (ever) seeing a man change a diaper in our family, not immediate or extended, not once.

Did cloth diapers play a role in the non-changing? I tend to think cloth diapers had something to do with it.

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Not with my kids....I used cloth, xH just rolled with it. And I understand DH and his xW used cloth on DsD...xBil did his share of changing as well...he's DD's godfather as well as father of two...diapers were just something they dealt with.

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11 minutes ago, Mame925 said:

Not with my kids....I used cloth, xH just rolled with it. And I understand DH and his xW used cloth on DsD...xBil did his share of changing as well...he's DD's godfather as well as father of two...diapers were just something they dealt with.

You found a gem, Mame. :)

The only rolling my husband did, and you know I used cloth, too, was rolling out of sight at the first sign someone needed changing. LOL!

But thinking back on it, it was always the woman of the house that changed the diapers, both when I was a young child growing up, and even when I became a mom.

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Come to think of it, I knew some couples who took turns changing diapers if they were both w/ home/with baby. But they would often argue over whose turn it was while poor baby was crying (and this was even true w/ disposables.) So that's why I didn't push it w/ DH.

As a GF, he was more easygoing about it though. Maybe he "mellowed w/ age," as they say - at least as far as diaper-changing was concerned! ;)

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25 minutes ago, RoseRed135 said:

Come to think of it, I knew some couples who took turns changing diapers if they were both w/ home/with baby. But they would often argue over whose turn it was while poor baby was crying (and this was even true w/ disposables.) So that's why I didn't push it w/ DH.

As a GF, he was more easygoing about it though. Maybe he "mellowed w/ age," as they say - at least as far as diaper-changing was concerned! ;)

RR. What I would have given to have an extra set of helping hands when it came to changing diapers in our house when the kids were small.

As far as mellowing is concerned, I do believe you're onto something in mentioning that, because my husband was way more hands-on when it came to the grands, compared to when our kids were babies, i.e., holding, etc. I know both DH and I, tended to be somewhat staunch and old-fashioned when it came to full-filling our duties around the home when it came to gender-based things.

DH worked (fulltime) outside of the home, and I stayed at home, so DH was a big proponent of women doing women's work, and men doing men's work, and baby/child-care definitely fell into the women's work category in our home.

I do believe plucking a Pamper diaper from the box and changing a bum (for a father), was far more acceptable, and probably a much easier sell, than imposing folding, pinning, and rubber-panting.

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Posted (edited)

Just now, BalloonPants said:

I do believe plucking a Pamper diaper from the box and changing a bum (for a father), was far more acceptable, and probably a much easier sell, than imposing folding, pinning, and rubber-panting.

Might be.... hmmm... So perhaps disposables helped advance Women's Lib in the home?! Interesting thought! :lol:

But we're getting way OT here. For those who want to continue discussing men & women's roles in babycare, etc., BP has opened up a new thread on that topic in the Gabbery (thanks, @BalloonPants!):

 

 

Meanwhile, back to whether or not the GC's parents ever take advantage.... In my case, YDD is rather good about not doing that. TBH, that was less true when she first started her family, but we've worked out any kinks since then. Once in a while, I still have to remind her that I have a life outside of taking care of her kids/my granddolls, as precious as they are to me. :) But most of the time, we're good.

Edited by RoseRed135
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2 minutes ago, RoseRed135 said:

Might be.... hmmm... So perhaps disposables helped advance Women's Lib in the home?! Interesting thought! :lol:

Oh... I do love the women's lib comment! A big yes to that! :) 

Just love your insight on topics, RR!

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4 minutes ago, RoseRed135 said:

Back to whether or not the GC's parents ever take advantage.... In my case, YDD is rather good about not doing that. TBH, that was less true when she first started her family, but we've worked out any kinks since then. Once in a while, I still have to remind her that I have a life outside of taking care of her kids/my granddolls, as precious as they are to me. :) But most of the time, we're good.

And that's just it, there's a fine-balance of sorts that needs to happen to appease the needs of both parties involved, and I do believe for most, a happy balance does exist.

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Just now, BalloonPants said:

Just love your insight on topics, RR!

Thanks (she says, blushing)! But IDK about "insight." Just exploring possibilities. :)

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