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To say no to looking after DSD?

(52 Posts)
TheDishwasherFairy Thu 12-Jun-14 10:12:54

Huge backstory of DP's ex taking the piss with contact, changing or ditching weekends at the last minute, us having to change our plans so that we can have DSD at short notice, 'favours' never being reciprocated, etc.

DP and ex have DSD 50:50 although in practice we have her a bit more than 50% because of situations like this one.

Ex is going on holiday with her partner (aside: she's never taken DSD on holiday, whereas we never go on holiday without DSD). So we're having DSD for the full fortnight.

But ex is stuck for after school childcare on the days that DSD would normally be with her (we have a childminder / I do it on our days), so has asked DP to basically ask me if I'll do it.

This is massively inconvenient for me. I'm on mat leave with DD. I've got a term's worth of baby groups paid for up front and I'd have to miss those sessions and lose that money in order to pick up DSD. Same story with an exercise class I've block-booked in advance.

Apart from that, I feel like it's her problem to solve, not ours. She's suggested to DP that if I can't do it, he pay for our childminder to have DSD. I think she should pay since she's the one going away.


Funnyfoot Thu 12-Jun-14 10:20:05


She has put her holiday above her child. Wrong.
I'm not saying she shouldn't go but she should arrange and pay for alternative childcare if it is outside of your allotted time so to speak.

deakymom Thu 12-Jun-14 10:20:47

if you really can't afford it tell her explain you just dont have the money she will have to pay

is there a child support order? you could tell her you will reduce her payments to cover it for two weeks

its really hers and her ex husbands problem they are the parents

RedTractorBlueTractor Thu 12-Jun-14 10:21:10

I agree with you. If your DPs ex wants to use the CM then they should pay.

CoffeeTea103 Thu 12-Jun-14 10:30:58

Yanbu, her child, her responsibility to make arrangements for the time she isn't available.

rinabean Thu 12-Jun-14 10:36:29

Sounds awful. I'm glad this 50/50 shit didn't exist when I was a kid. And talking about whose "problem" the girl is and how it's a "favour" to dump her on someone else as she's "inconvenient". What a shame.

If the mom is as bad as you say then the girl will realise it when she's older (if she doesn't already). Until then, her dad (and I do mean him and not necessarily you) provides for what she needs and doesn't have, whether or not her mom should have provided it. Yes she should pay, but you are still being unreasonable. If you don't like the arrangements, and it seems like none of you do, then you change them. Though it doesn't seem like either parent wants to give this girl an actual home.

TheDishwasherFairy Thu 12-Jun-14 10:45:33

I'm saying childcare is the problem. Not the child.

Whenever she's asked us to have DSD extra days and weekends we've never said no. Even if it's meant cancelling weekends away (that's happened) or missing out on seeing good friends visiting from abroad (that's happened too). We always change our plans so that we can have DSD. Our house is her home. She's here more than she's at her mum's.

Although I will admit here (and nowhere else) that it can be a huge pain in the bum. And I often feel like I never really know what's going on from one week to the next.

WeddedBliss Thu 12-Jun-14 10:51:55

Ex is going on holiday with her partner (aside: she's never taken DSD on holiday, whereas we never go on holiday without DSD). So we're having DSD for the full fortnight. But ex is stuck for after school childcare on the days that DSD would normally be with her (we have a childminder / I do it on our days), so has asked DP to basically ask me if I'll do it

It seems a bit weird to me tbh. Surely if you've agreed to 'have her for the fortnight' then you actually have her for the fortnight, and all that that entails. So, as you do with your own children, that involves getting them back and forth to school, making sure they have somewhere to go after school etc etc.

If you couldn't commit to the time/expense of that then tbh I think you should have told mum that you really couldn't have her for the full fortnight because of xyz.

Llareggub Thu 12-Jun-14 10:53:03

I feel like that too when my ex changes his once a fortnight day with our DCs. Ultimately, I swallow my real feelings and put on a bright, happy face so that I protect our sons from the reality of the situation.

Mine told me he'd have to take leave over the school hols because I told him he'd have to have our sons. He doesn't seem to grasp that I do too!

I take up the slack because my DCs must not feel they are an inconvenience and I have to make up for a missing parent.

Why can't your partner work flexibly for those two weeks?

ScarlettDragon Thu 12-Jun-14 10:54:45

YANBU. It is a PITA (the mum), but I would do the childcare (either having her yourself or paying for the childminder). I've been there myself, having to drop everything at the last minute to have DSD. You need to be there for DSD as her mum doesn't seem to give a shit. It may seem hard now, but in the future she'll realise who has been there for her and he hasn't. She'll see her mum for how she really is. (Speaking from experience here, my DSD is now 21).

Who gets the CB for DSD? Does your DH pay maintenance? If she's with you more than half of the time anyway I would apply for residence (if it's still called that)? Then she will have to pay the maintenance to your DH and you can claim CB and CTC (if you're eligible).

TheDishwasherFairy Thu 12-Jun-14 10:58:06

She gets the CB which technically she shouldn't but pick your battles and all that

DP doesn't pay maintenance because we have DSD at least 50% (but often more). Not eligible for CTC.

The thing is, whether we pay for a CM or I do it and lose out on the cost of the classes I've already paid for, either way her going on holiday is costing us money. And that really pisses me off.

Bonsoir Thu 12-Jun-14 11:00:21

I think you need to come to terms with the fact that if you are having your DSD for a fortnight, pick-ups and childcare are the responsibility of your family (your DH or you or someone you pay), not your DSD's mother.

KneeQuestion Thu 12-Jun-14 11:00:58

im wondering the same as weddedbliss.

if you are having her for the fortnight while her mum is on holiday, then all her needs, childcare or otherwise are down to you? (by you I mean your DH too/primarily)

are you really expecting her to arrange things for the days she would have had her if she'd not been on holiday? Because that is a tad bizarre if so.

Bonsoir Thu 12-Jun-14 11:05:16

It will be lovely for your DSD if you pick her up from school every day with her baby sister in tow. Make a fuss of her while her mother is away so she doesn't feel unwanted by either or both of you.

TheDishwasherFairy Thu 12-Jun-14 11:07:51

So the week's divided in half - our half of the week, after school childcare is taken care of; her half of the week was also taken care of but whatever arrangement she had has now fallen through and her attitude is to just shrug and throw it over to us.

She's also going this weekend, so it's the last-minuteness again that's so tiresome.

I've got DP flapping about what he's going to do and I just feel like he's expecting me to step in and sort it out when it actually means me and DD missing out on our stuff. So I'm standing firm.

I just wish they'd both be a bit more bloody organised. There's a long history of leaving childcare arrangements to the final hour and other people (including me) having to put themselves out to bail them out. I'm just sick of it.

treadheavily Thu 12-Jun-14 11:13:36

I can understand that you wouldn't want to miss the pre-paid exercise class. I don't understand the baby group thing, are they in the evening?

PrimalLass Thu 12-Jun-14 11:13:38

Book the childminder. How it is paid for is then between your DH and his ex.

grumpydwarf Thu 12-Jun-14 11:15:15

Surely its swings and round-a-bouts? I know you have said you don't take holiday without DSD but if you did take a holiday would you pay DSD's mum for the childcare on what was normally "your" days?

I agree you have committed now to doing it so the problem is ultimately you DH's to sort out.

I'm on both sides of this as have a DS and a DSS who doesn't live with us.

Its annoying but if my EXH took a holiday (which he has, including a two month one!) I would have to sort out childcare for the days he would usually see our son. maybe 50/50 care is different and as we only have EOW and holiday contact with my DSS but ultimately if DSS is with his dad then me and his dad arrange any care that is needed and pay for it if needed.

TheDishwasherFairy Thu 12-Jun-14 11:15:39

Tread the baby group starts at 2.30 and lasts for an hour. So I'd miss pick up time.

grumpydwarf Thu 12-Jun-14 11:16:50

Sorry x-post so what happens if you want to take your DSD away for a holiday? Do you have extra holiday contact?

TheDishwasherFairy Thu 12-Jun-14 11:18:05

but if you did take a holiday would you pay DSD's mum for the childcare on what was normally "your" days?

I honestly can't imagine that ever happening. DP wouldn't entertain it.

But if it did, the responsibility for sorting out childcare for 'our' days would be incumbent on us. We wouldn't leave it to his ex to sort.

RedTractorBlueTractor Thu 12-Jun-14 11:18:14

I agree that it shouldn't be you having to sort it out.

Maybe get your DP to sit down with the PITA ex and say you will suck it up this time, but in future the answer will be no.

AllDirections Thu 12-Jun-14 11:24:44

I'm inclined to say just suck it up and pay the childminder. When one parent lets a child down for whatever reasons it's up to the other parent to step up and do what that child needs.

It is very annoying when it's one parent that regularly has to do the stepping up. But what else can you do?

crazyboots Thu 12-Jun-14 11:24:59

She's part of your family as much as your new baby. You are addressing the very slight challenges of a family with siblings. She's not a problem. Yes younger siblings, which your baby is, tend to do less activities or have them timed around pick ups, have them cancelled when older siblings have illness, inset days, school holidays.

I don't agree that its just your DP's issue. You also made a choice to have a baby who would have an older sibling. You have a choice whether you make this into a positive for your family or turn small challenges into a problems which will reverberate around throughout children's lives.

Fanjoishoos Thu 12-Jun-14 11:27:45

I agree with weddedbliss. It's your DP's responsibility as he's agreed to take that responsibility while the ex is on holiday. If you have plans already that you do not want to cancel then don't. Your DP is the actual parent responsible so should be the one to deal with/sort out the arrangements for your DSD. If your DP is flapping, that's up to him but ultimately you shouldn't have to cancel plans because his child needs childcare during a period he's agreed to have full responsibility for her.

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