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For not wanting SIL as my babies child minder?

(70 Posts)
flossy101 Thu 28-Mar-13 15:56:33

My SIL (DH's younger sister) is a SAHM to her 3 children, aged 2, 3 and 6, her partner is a brickie by trade but he just picks up bits if work here and there, doesn't earn a steady income, and this causes issues with their benefits and they are always short of money. MIL and SIL think they have found the perfect solution to this, and it's me paying SIL to mind my baby when I go back to work after my mat leave ends

Now, MIL mentioned this before my DS (now 8.5 months) was even born, I was abit taken aback as she isn't a qualified childminder or anything like that and to be honest she struggles with her own 3 without adding another to the mix, I said I wasn't sure what hours I would be doing/long time off yet etc. They got increasingly persistent, they have made "enquiries" as to the going rate for a childminder and SIL says she will give me 10% off as "we're family" and "technically" she isn't registered. (She has no plans to register fwiw).

Now I know some people would love to leave their baby with a family member and some don't agree that nursery is the best place for a baby but I really don't want SIL looking after him, for the following reasons;

- I find her quite lazy, now I really know that having 3 kids must be hard work but she doesn't go anywhere/do anything with them 5 days a week just sits at home, going to the shop is a big mission to her, i take DS to baby groups most days and Surestart run ones for under 5s so I've suggested meeting up there but she's says it too hard to get two kids up and out, her 3 year old had a pre school place but she stopped taking him because it was too stressful having to go out at lunch time to pick him up.

They just seem to watch tv all day, and they eat crap, which is fine, but not what I want for my DS if I am paying for it!

So anyway we have been looking at nurseries and found a great one (it will be for two days a week, going back part time) and DH told mil we had paid the deposit, mil has gone quite mad saying how can we give £80 per week to a nursery when we could be giving that money to family to help them out.

I've said I'm not comfortable with the exchange of money between family, her not being registered, is this benefit fraud etc etc but they both dismiss my concerns and think I'm "over thinking" and "creating problems where there aren't any".

DH agrees its not a good idea and has told his Mum and Sister but they are mad mad mad!! His Mum has said she doesn't want to speak to us until we figure out where our loyalties lie. Argh!

Who is being unreasonable?

Jelly15 Fri 29-Mar-13 11:51:18

I would just tell them, "you can go on and on about it but it is not going to happen."

hippoesque Fri 29-Mar-13 11:13:06

I wouldn't even bother looking into the legal side of things. If you are not comfortable leaving your baby with her then DON'T LEAVE YOUR BABY WITH HER!! Who cares if they get pissy about it... It's either they get their way and you feel uncomfortable whilst at work or you get your way and they don't talk to you for a bit. I know which situation I would prefer smile

BabsAndTheRu Thu 28-Mar-13 21:43:03

When it comes to situations like these you have to stand your ground, this is your child. You tell them that he is going to nursery of your choice and that's that and that you will not be bullied into doing something you don't want to do. These two women are bullying you and your DH and the only way to knock it on the head is to be firm but fair, so they know you are not a walk over. We had to do that to DP'S DM, in fact in that situation it was DP who used the same phrase as above, she questioned me separately, saying how awful he had been to say this, but had to accept this when I told her that what he said was correct. I hate people trying to tell you what to do, always makes me do the opposite. Good luck and stand your ground.

LittleBairn Thu 28-Mar-13 21:42:59

YANBU basically they are trying to guilt trip you into supporting their own family under the guise of Childminding when in fact your DS will be stuck inside all day eating crap and watching TV.
Their financial situation is not your problem.

Christelle2207 Thu 28-Mar-13 21:36:54

A million times Yanbu.
Think you are lucky though that dh is on side so that he can back you up. They'll get over it.

thezebrawearspurple Thu 28-Mar-13 21:34:36

Pay no attention to either of them, they'll soon realise that you won't allow them to manipulate you with their guilt tripping, nagging and sulking. Don't let them spoil anything for you.

If they're really upsetting you, just be blunt and say you don't want your kid stuck indoors in front of the tv all day and eating junk food, explain that the nursery provides proper attention, education, socialisation and nutrition. That would shut them up!

Yfronts Thu 28-Mar-13 21:28:16

you are being totally reasonable. Just say that you want your child doing lots of activities and being creative

HermioneHatesHoovering Thu 28-Mar-13 21:25:20

Their money worries could be solved if the husband got a proper job, maybe? Oh no, that would interfere with their benefits too!shock

CautionaryWhale Thu 28-Mar-13 21:23:52

Gah! I would not tell her your misgivings re her daughter's parenting skills - it will get back and cause a further family feud.
I would ensure your DH continues to say no.

I would not even mention cc vouchers - before you know it DH will be asked to subsidise his sister to the tune of the vouchers as 'You are getting them for free anyway, you are working etc'

If she wants to help out her daughter/your SIL then she can give her extra cash - unreasonable to try to engineer you paying for unwanted cc or babysitting services.

Stick to your guns including you enjoying maternity leave with your child.

If they continue to badger then you use the very valid reason that you prefer a nursery setting for your child as they will be doing formalised early learning goals in good stead for future schooling and you want him to be independent/socialised with lots of children and adults not just his cousins/people he knows.

flossy101 Thu 28-Mar-13 21:21:13

Mil is a bit of a battle axe, we have had some minor disagreements before, mostly just because I do things a bit differently to her and SIL.

And when DS was born she went through a phase of calling him by his middle name because she "wasn't too taken" by his first name!

I have no intention of backing down, it's just a shame they are spoiling things.

howshouldibehave Thu 28-Mar-13 21:13:44

Just remember that they can't force you to do this. They can't snatch your child off you and demand money-what you and DH say goes. They can be as pissed off as they like!

My sister had this with her SIL (on her husbands side) who wanted to look after my DN to earn some money. The SIL is a nice person but with very different views on looking after children. My sister ended up having to be quite blunt about it not being an option, it caused a bit of upset, but it was ok in the end.

I think your DH needs to be clear with his family that its not happening. They won't like it but you may need to accept they just don't talk to you for a while -your priority is your child.

howshouldibehave Thu 28-Mar-13 20:47:04

What a pair of cows telling you what you should be doing with your child! It sounds like they say you as their own personal cash point!

Are they like this in other ways?

redwallday Thu 28-Mar-13 20:29:53

YADNBU! Your child, your decision who looks after him. You are not there to financially support another family member whilst putting your own child's welfare at risk. I've done what you MIL is asking and trust me it doesn't end well! Independent, qualified and registered childcare all the way for me!

candyandyoga Thu 28-Mar-13 20:03:51

Do not feel bad about your decision! Your mil is being a twat. Leave her to it and get on with your plans. Do not back down. Do not apologise and do not explain!

WeAreEternal Thu 28-Mar-13 19:50:52

I had this exact problem too.

My SIL is lovely but I know for a fact that she leaves her kids 7 and 5 to watch tv virtually all day and play alone while she sits watching tv or on her laptop in her bedroom.
She actually confessed to me once that the most time she spends with her kids is the walk to and from school!
She finds them a haste and complains about them constantly.
And yet for the last four years she has been trying to convince me to let her take over from my childminder (picking DS up from school and keeping him until 5pm three times a week) as she could really use the money, and I'd be helping out family rather than throwing the money at a stranger... Blah blah blah

She still gets irritated with me every time I say no.
She is lovely but crazy.

Inertia Thu 28-Mar-13 19:50:34

Yanbu. Good to see a DH doing the right thing .

Love the idea that MiL thinks that her not speaking to you is some kind of punishment for you smile

If SIL wants to get paid to childmind then she needs to train and register as a professional childminder.

Been in exactly the same situation except that I haven't really resolved it; luckily my sil lives nearly an hour the other way in rush hour traffic , which helps. For me it is partly that the cash in hand idea doesn't sit well, but more that I don't like the way she parents, and also admits she overrides her sisters wishes when she cares for her child.

We have an ad hoc nanny/babysitter, but she is always offering to do days the nanny cant. Luckily the nanny has managed every day so far!

Stick with your guns op, I'm here in solidarity! (PS dh agrees with me too, is easier as she is not his sis, but his bro's wife)

" His Mum has said she doesn't want to speak to us until we figure out where our loyalties lie."
Well, they lie with your son and not with your mad MIL. Her not talking to you sounds like an absolute bonus.

Xmasbaby11 Thu 28-Mar-13 18:34:38

Don't touch it with a bargepole. There is absolutely nothing on her side.

sue52 Thu 28-Mar-13 18:33:25

Just keep on saying no. If you felt your baby would be in a happy and stimulating enviroment then fine but your sil's set up is not ideal. Your sil's financial worries are not your concern and you don't go to work to help her out. Your mil is very wrong to guilt trip you like this.

Jollyb Thu 28-Mar-13 18:31:03

No not at all. My sister is a registered CM and I'm not sure I'd want her to mind my DD. fortunately she lives just too far away to make it feasible.

Roseformeplease England Thu 28-Mar-13 18:24:23

Tell her your work offers vouchers so you have to use registered care?

mumofweeboys Thu 28-Mar-13 18:22:13

If your sil is that hard up, tell her to get registered and start childminding properly instead of trying to make her financially dependent on you.

DontmindifIdo Thu 28-Mar-13 18:09:09

You know what, your MIL will be slagging you off anyway, so why not go for it. Tell her that you are telling SIL it's because of the childcare vouchers, which while are a consideration, is actually just an excuse because you are trying to save her feelings. Say you don't think the quality of care she'll give your DS would be good enough, state you don't think the food she feeds them is good enough, she doesn't do activities in the day - which if you were paying for care you'd insist on, and generally you think she wouldn't cope with an additional child, that you think your DS will just be shoved in a corner, and you can get far better quality of care for your DS for less money (as you can use your vouchers) so as much as you'd like to just give your SIL some money, you are never going to leave her in sole charge of your DS.

Say that of course you'd never insult SIL so much to say it to her, and you are sure MIL wouldn't want you to cause a huge family rift about this, and that DH feels exactly the same way. That you would hope that MIL would help you manage to pass this message to SIL in a nice way that doesn't involve telling her you think she's not good enough.

MIL will of course explode at this - but hopefully in her following sulk with realise the good sense of keeping this from SIL...

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