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My mums last minute plans...

(42 Posts)
CerseiHeartsJaime4ever Mon 16-Nov-15 10:54:12

She picks up DS 3 days a week, has him for 1.5 hours till DP or I come home.

On several occasions she is late or tells me that week/night before that she can't do it (most times this has happened has been a hosp appt or holiday she's know about for weeks.) I understand there are times when things come up, she can't always be there obviously and for those times we have alternative options - DP's dad can sometimes pick him up or he can go to after school club. But we need some notice esp when she's known about it for ages and DP's dad has something else on or after school club has to be booked.

I have asked her time and time again for some notice so we can get plans arranged in advance, not just the night before. She gets angry and asks why I can't just take the day off, which of course I could do if I had some notice to do that! I don't mind that at all, she is doing us a favour after all, but work doesn't work that way! (She doesn't work)

Today she has said she needs a holiday, can't tell me when, it'll be in the next few weeks. I said could you give me an idea of dates please so I can speak to FIL. She says she can't, sorry and I am totally not understanding when it comes to this.

Am I unreasonable to expect just a bit of time to organise alternatives? I have booked afteschool club for the rest of dec now because I just won't have an idea what day she's not going to turn up until the night before confused

CerseiHeartsJaime4ever Mon 16-Nov-15 10:57:05

Emergencies are a different matter of course, these do understandably come up, but so far these are always routine, pre-arranged reasons that we just don't hear about until it's too late to organise something.

LemonBreeland Mon 16-Nov-15 10:59:00

I think the only answer is to stop using your Mum. She is not relieable and it is makingyour life stressful.

GeneHuntsMistress Mon 16-Nov-15 11:00:02

It sounds like she doesn't really want to do it anymore?

MammaTJ Mon 16-Nov-15 11:00:48

I would just use the after school club from now on and be done. It is stressful for you, but also not good for DC to not know who will be picking them up and where they will be!

Cel982 Mon 16-Nov-15 11:00:58

YANBU. But you need a new childcare arrangement, this isn't working. Maybe afterschool club as a regular thing? She may kick off when you tell her, but you need reliable childcare, and she's not providing it at the moment.

CerseiHeartsJaime4ever Mon 16-Nov-15 11:01:27

I have asked her lots of times if it's too much for her and have said we can find alternatives but she gets upset and says she'll miss DS. sad

roundandroundthehouses Mon 16-Nov-15 11:02:09

I'd have to agree. I was even wondering if she doesn't want to do it any more, but is hoping not to have to tell you straight out. If she really does want to do it, then she may be too disorganised. Most people - even if they don't work - would understand that working people need to have childcare they can rely on. If you've already had to book alternative childcare 'just in case', then it isn't saving you much trouble, stress or expense anyway.

tigermoll Mon 16-Nov-15 11:02:23

I think you need to stop this arrangement, as it's clearly not working for either of you. You can't force her to tell you in advance, and she is clearly using it to make a point -- she doesn't want you to rely on her looking after your son three times a week. Maybe she feels it's too much, or it is harder than she thought it would be, but she doesn't feel able to tell you straight that the arrangements need to change. But they do need to change -- you need to find other care for your child.

GeneHuntsMistress Mon 16-Nov-15 11:02:48

How about booking after school club 2 days and she just picks up 1 day - should be easier for her to work round just one day?

roundandroundthehouses Mon 16-Nov-15 11:03:07

Ah, cross-post. I suppose she'll then either have to be more reliable, or agree that she'll have to see your ds outside of work time sad

MythicalKings Mon 16-Nov-15 11:05:43

To be fair about the holiday she may be looking for a bargain so can't give you dates yet. However as far as not telling you about known dates goes, YANBU.

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Mon 16-Nov-15 11:07:25

She is being weird. You do need as much notice as possible, that's just common sense! Have you got any idea why she doesn't see this?

I agree with pp - this isn't working for you any more. I would explain gently that I needed a reliable option, emphasise that she will still see a lot of your DS and go ahead and book the after-school club.

roundandroundthehouses Mon 16-Nov-15 11:07:31

The issue here is that looking after your ds isn't just a treat for her. It's your childcare, so that you can work. I think she may be blurring those issues if she's getting cross with you for needing notice, but getting upset if you suggest that you stop. You can't 'just take the day off', and anybody, working or not, should understand that - or at least listen the first time it's explained to them.

Since she's going to be annoyed either way, you might as well go with the option that works best for you. I know that sounds hard-hearted for a person who's 'doing you a favour', but it needs to be on workable terms.

PittacusLore Mon 16-Nov-15 11:08:24

I had a similar arrangement with my parents, to mind my daughter 1 afternoon a week. They let me down so many times for the same kinds of things that I made other arrangements (Nursery) in the end. They were a bit gutted at the time but have got over it now and it was much better for me to have reliable childcare

SaucyJack Mon 16-Nov-15 11:08:31

I think it's entirely possible that she genuinely enjoys spending the time with her grandson whilst also using the little bit of power she has to make PA digs about you getting too comfortable about using her help.

(It's exactly what my mum would do if I was ever stupid enough to use her for childcare anyway.)

I think maybe you should pay for the after school club, and suggest she has him for tea on one of the days that you'll be at home. She can then see him without being able to disrupt your life so much.

roundandroundthehouses Mon 16-Nov-15 11:11:58

Yes - could it be a thing like wanting you to see how useful she's being, by occasionally withdrawing the help so you see how hard it would be without her? (Maybe that's just the dynamic in my family, though ;) ). Of course, that is also illogical, because if she wasn't available to mind your ds, you'd have another regular arrangement in place.

KnockMeDown Mon 16-Nov-15 11:12:26

Well, to me, it seems that she is letting you know that the arrangement is just not working for her. It is always tricky when you rely on family members to be your regular child care, rather than the emergency back up.

As there is an after school club available to you, why not just use this in future?

girlywhirly Mon 16-Nov-15 11:14:15

Yanbu to want some clarity and advance warning when your mum can't pick-up DS, but it sounds as though she doesn't want to continue with the arrangement. I think you will have to review your childcare options for the future. What happens during school holidays?

CerseiHeartsJaime4ever Mon 16-Nov-15 11:16:09

She used my grandparents a lot for childcare when we were young, in that I lived with them from Friday to Sunday, even had my own room there and she has said she wants to be able to do the same for me. But it's always on her terms and she gets very angry at me if I suggest that I can't just take the day off. She had her own business for years so I don't think she fully understands the working situation.

I think I will go with after school club as everyone has suggested. Thank you for telling me I'm not nuts! Money isn't the issue for AS club, it's just that she wanted the time with him and is off work, and 1.5hrs a day seemed manageable. I am off for mat leave from feb so it won't even be an issue then!

CerseiHeartsJaime4ever Mon 16-Nov-15 11:17:03

School holidays are covered as DP has them off.

Tywinlannister Mon 16-Nov-15 11:26:22

It sounds like she wants it her way, all the time. She doesn't want to give it up but at the same time won't commit to set timings.

Use after school club till February. It will make your life easier.

cecinestpasunepipe Mon 16-Nov-15 11:43:50

I look after my two preschool grandchildren two days a week, and have done since my dd went back to work after maternity leave. It is an absolute commitment, and I wouldn't dream of breaking it for anything other than an emergency. Dd is a teacher, so while Ihave been doing this, my own holidays have been limited to school holidays. It has been absolutely worth it to be involved in the care of my gorgeous, funny gcs

Unfortunately, we are having an emergency at the moment in that my dh is in hospital with pneumonia and this is exacerbating his dementia to such a degree that I am having to stay with him pretty much full time, and I am feeling dreadful at letting dd down and pulled in two directions.

Apart from this, a commitment is a commitment especially where children are concerned.

ouryve Mon 16-Nov-15 11:49:10

She can pull as much of a pet lip as she likes about how much she'll missing. You need to give her an ultimatum, rather than asking if it's too much for her. Make it clear that you need to be reliable and that you need more than a day's notice (as she's not even giving that much) to make other arrangements if she can't do the pick up. Make it clear that if she keeps on letting you down with inadequate warning, then you're going to have to make other arrangements, permanently, and she's going to have to see her DGS at a different time.

LovelyFriend Mon 16-Nov-15 11:50:39

I'd go with the ASC as the default.
If your Mum wants to collect DS on the odd day tell her that is fine if she gives you suitable amount of advance notice.

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