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To have paid my parents for childcare

(67 Posts)
KatieKatie1980 Sun 25-Jan-15 13:54:23

Hi, this is my first post so apologies if anything goes wrong!

I had a very difficult pregnancy with DS in 2009/10 and ended up taking 5 months off due to pregnancy related illness. When he was born, I took 6 months maternity leave.

During maternity leave, I tried to request part time hours or find another job. No such luck. At which point my parents offered to have DS for me, but wouldn't do it for free.

Using my parents never crossed my mind, nor did paying them but if they were happy, it seemed to be a win win situation as DS adored them anyway.

My OH on the other hand, had decided that they were the biggest scroungers on the planet and that family always babysit for free. This has been a gripe of his since 2010 and he just won't let it go/wants to make me feel bad about it.

This was a usual day and I worked full time, Mon-Fri!:

Drop DS off 6:40am
DS gets dropped to me at home by my Dad 17:45pm
My Mum has MS - not in a wheelchair, no mobility issues but tiredness and other MS related stuff.
My parents don't have a lot of money

I paid them (out of my wages) monthly and provided everything that they would need to care for my DS during the day. OH also had a problem with this but I didn't see why my parents should buy nappies etc...

I think it was pretty neat of them to have him for those hours, especially as my Mum has MS (she said it took her mind off things). To be honest, if they hadn't offered, I wouldn't have put him into daycare, I'd have become a SAHM because it would have been too expensive.

I feel they really helped us out because I really needed to go back to work (had to save up to be able to move).

So .. was I being unreasonable to pay them? Are they the only Grandparents on the planet who asked for payment (OH's words, not mine).

Fed up!

gamerchick Sun 25-Jan-15 13:57:49

Ask him what his solution is without them doing it for free.

I thinks a pretty good deal tbh for those hours.

TheAwfulDaughter Sun 25-Jan-15 14:01:10

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

WellDidYa Sun 25-Jan-15 14:01:20

ask when his family will be helping out?

mrsmalcolmreynolds Sun 25-Jan-15 14:01:31

YANBU! My PIL do look after our DC for free but that is 9:30 to 4:30 one day a week and we offered to pay but they wouldn't accept anything. They come here so of course we provide everything necessary. Anything more than that we would insist on paying - we have friends whose DM looks after the children 4 days a week and they have always paid her. Your DH is wilfully ignoring the difference between babysitting for a couple of hours or as an occasional favour as opposed to pretty much full time childcare.

ILovePud Sun 25-Jan-15 14:01:48

I don't think you or your parents are being unreasonable at all, I think this arrangement is common. Full time child care which is what they are providing is a big commitment. My DM and DMil have the kids one day a week each and we don't pay them but we have offered and they've declined. I think your OH is being a bit of an arse, can he not appreciate how much of a favour they are doing? Few other childcare arrangements would let you drop a DC off that early, does he have other gripes about your parents or does he tend to be stingy in lots of areas? I feel bad for you stuck in the middle of this brew

ghostyslovesheep Sun 25-Jan-15 14:03:01

suggest your OH finds and pays for alternative CC then.

My mum looked after my 2 - then 3 for a while - I paid her, she had sick pay, holidays etc all agreed in advance

why should she not get paid - she was doing a brilliant job and saving my a fortune in nursery fees

Viviennemary Sun 25-Jan-15 14:03:05

These were very long hours indeed for anybody never mind somebody like your Mum with this very debilitating illness. Not many nurseries in fact do any open at 6.40. I think your DH is being ridiculous. Tell him to make enquiries at local nurseries and childminders and then he will see you got la good deal. And if his family would do it free why didn't they take your DC for nothing. It's all waffle. But this would infuriate me too.

MerdeAlor Sun 25-Jan-15 14:04:16

Of course you should have paid them. What a bloody insulting comment off your DH that they are scroungers. Why should they do it for free? It's hard work!

defineme Sun 25-Jan-15 14:06:35

I think it is only fair and it would be exploitative considering their circumstances if you didn't pay. Well off, fit grandparents doing a day a week
would be different and I still think covering costs and big gifts are in order if they're kind enough to offer.
The hours they're doing for you are very long and, particularly considering your mum's disability, it is only right to compensate them.
My mum does one day a week school runs for me and I look after her dog for several weeks a year holiday.

diddl Sun 25-Jan-15 14:06:37

6.40-17.45 Mon-Fri.

On what fucking planet is that babysitting?

I suppose I wouldn't expect to pay CM/nursery rates, but I'd expect to provide nappies/food & pay something for their time.

Aeroflotgirl Sun 25-Jan-15 14:07:50

Yanbu at all to pay them, good on you. Your partner sounds like a scrounger and a piss taker, sorry he does. You would have to pay a nursery a hell of a lot more, and provide all the nappies and wipes that is needed.

chanie44 Sun 25-Jan-15 14:08:14

I think there is a difference between babysitting and providing regular childcare.

defineme Sun 25-Jan-15 14:09:48

Your post worries me because it sounds as if your dh has issues with money? Do you feel you're a team, does he support you emotionally and in your career? Do you both share money?

PtolemysNeedle Sun 25-Jan-15 14:10:51

Don't your parents need to be registered as childminders if you're paying them? Or does it affect them for tax purposes?

I don't think you're wrong to pay your parents, it just depends how much.

You have posted as if this arrangement has come to an end and they no longer still do it. Is that right?

coppertop Sun 25-Jan-15 14:11:11

"My OH on the other hand, had decided that they were the biggest scroungers on the planet"

Surely the scrounger in your scenario would be the person who expected someone else to provide them with 55hrs of childcare a week for free?

YANBU to pay your parents.

Nolim Sun 25-Jan-15 14:11:19


SnowWhiteAteTheApple Sun 25-Jan-15 14:11:25

Good for you OP. So many expect free childcare from parents with little thanks and lots of moaning. Some of the grans I see on the school run look shattered and ready for a break from their second round of child rearing.

I'd never expect anybody to care for DS free of charge, your OH is wrong.

skylark2 Sun 25-Jan-15 14:11:28

I was going to say there might be legal issues but I see the laws have changed on that (when DD was tiny if you paid a relative to look after your kid in the relative's home they had to be registered as a childminder). So I think you're fine there.

I would say that your DH has a point that family babysit for free. But 55 hours a week is not babysitting. It's childcare. They're different.

We didn't pay DMil, not least because at the time it would have been illegal. But we made absolutely sure she wasn't out of pocket.

lifelorn Sun 25-Jan-15 14:11:38

I care for my DGC for 3 half days. Initially it was to help out the parents, but I am sure I give and receive lots of love and fun times. I don't take payment as I don't need it, not rich by any means, but comfortable.

I think your relationship works out well, the child will be cared for VERY well and it also helps out the grandparents: win win.

I think the hours they do are very long though.

Timeforabiscuit Sun 25-Jan-15 14:11:45

I'm sorry i think your partner is absolutely in the wrong, that is childcare NOT babysitting.

WorraLiberty Sun 25-Jan-15 14:12:34

YANBU at all.

You found what was the best solution and as others have said, what your parents do is certainly not babysitting!

I love your nick name btw, for some reason I can hear cheerleaders chanting it grin

Theboodythatrocked Sun 25-Jan-15 14:13:18

God sorry op but do you actually love this man and his horrible attitude?

He is being massively unreasonable and quite horrible about your parents.

ApocalypseThen Sun 25-Jan-15 14:13:19

You were right to pay them. Taking children - even grandchildren - for those kinds if times week in, week out as a regular and ongoing arrangement is a massive commitment. It can't be compared to the odd bit of babysitting at all.

They shouldn't be out of pocket and since it takes over a good chunk of their personal time, needs to be compensated.

His parents aren't offering anything like as much, are they? So unless he can find someone to do it better, cheaper, and pay out of his own salary he can really keep these unwarranted and nasty comments about your parents to himself.

diddl Sun 25-Jan-15 14:15:53

Even if they could do it for nothing, there's no reason why they should!

whar are his family offering to do to help out then?

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