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To not want to pay Mil to take care of dd

(81 Posts)
agapimou Sun 20-Dec-15 11:40:18

Mil works as a private nurse in a hospital. Every time she takes her salary she is supposed to pay a certain percentage for insurance (We are not in UK and they have a weird system here) to continue her job.

She NEVER pays this insurance and at the beginning of the year they told her she could no longer work at the hospital until she pays off the insurance bill which is about 2 or 3 thousand. Until 2 months ago dp and I were not living close to her but she was calling us regularly to send her money and help her pay off the bill in installments. She was doing odd jobs to get by and I think borrowing a lot from friends (who now no longer speak to her).

Now we live just up the road from her and she takes dd 13 months for 6 to 7 hours per day while me and dp work. For this we pay her 30 euros every week plus any extra bills or payments that crop up. I do a big shop every week and all the food gets split in half. Dp pays for her cigarettes as she smokes like a chimney. We also pay for her on days out and put petrol in the car.

Is this normal? Do people usually pay their parents to take care of the grand kids? I feel like we're being taken for a ride as mil does occasionally give massages to friends and neighbors and takes money but spends it on extra cigarettes or luxury items. She has always been terrible with money, she owes 25 - 30 thousand on credit cards and they are about to take her house. She literally hemorrhages money when she has it and buys only brand names, designer labels or goes to drink coffee at the trendy bars.

AIBU? I know paying for private childcare would be WAY more expensive so should i just be grateful that she's taking dd?

VimFuego101 Sun 20-Dec-15 11:44:04

Are you happy with the care she gives your child? If so, I'd love to have full time childcare for 30 euros a week. I think you/ your DH need to help her find a way out of her current financial situation though - where will she live if she loses the house? It doesn't sound like she can really afford to continue looking after your child for a pittance for much longer.

MissDexter Sun 20-Dec-15 11:44:37

You pay 30 euros a week for full time child care confused

FayKorgasm Sun 20-Dec-15 11:45:23

You could pay her to look after dd but stop all the extras. Shes a grown woman who should have taken care ofher own bills.

Nanny0gg Sun 20-Dec-15 11:45:37

AIBU? I know paying for private childcare would be WAY more expensive so should i just be grateful that she's taking dd?

Well, yes.

Apart from the fact it all sounds really chaotic, she smokes like a chimney and you don't seem very keen on her.

Gileswithachainsaw Sun 20-Dec-15 11:45:54


it's a huge mistake. been there done that regretted it more than I can say.

it's impossible even when paying them to get them to stop thinking like a grandparent and feeding shit and smoking around them and ignoring requests.

and start thinking like someone who's being paid to do a job.

BarbarianMum Sun 20-Dec-15 11:46:27

I think it is totally reasonable to pay for that level of childcare. I can't work out if you are paying a reasonable amount or a very high one from your post, though.

Put it this way - what should she live on if you don't pay? Obviously, you are under no obligation to let her look after your dd if you'd rather she was cared for somewhere else.

FayKorgasm Sun 20-Dec-15 11:46:40

Sorry I read it as 30 Euros a day.

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Sun 20-Dec-15 11:47:42

No, it's not normal to pay for a relative's living expenses in return for child-care. However, if she doesn't do it you'd have to pay someone else.

The way things are going, she'll soon be homeless and living with you and your family.

Gruntfuttock Sun 20-Dec-15 11:51:47

Would I be right in assuming that she smokes all the time she's looking after your child, so your 13 month old is breathing in cigarette smoke for 7 hours a day?

agapimou Sun 20-Dec-15 11:54:13

I have no issues whatsoever with the level of care she gives dd, she smokes outside when dd naps and follows most of the guidelines we ask. The only thing we disagree on is that I like to use homemade shampoos, soaps and oils on dd and mil likes the shop-bought expensive kind but I just let that go as i know i'm being pfb.

With all the extras I think we probably pay her about 400 euros a month. Its still a steal for childcare i know but I thought grandparents took care of their grandkids for free!?

Mil is still young, only 47 and fully capable of looking for another job. She is currently studying to be a physiotherapist and has worked as a nurse well over 20 years. She did briefly find other cleaning jobs but I think she feels a little ashamed to to do this. Its very snobbish where we live and her friends are all working professionals or sahm with successful partners.

agapimou Sun 20-Dec-15 11:55:52

NO she NEVER smokes with dd in the house. We'd probably come to blows if that happened grin

TheMaddHugger Sun 20-Dec-15 11:55:55

don't do it. If it goes bad you will have more problems firing family than a stranger

Nanny0gg Sun 20-Dec-15 11:58:16

Its still a steal for childcare i know but I thought grandparents took care of their grandkids for free!?

Only if they're in a financial position to do so.

It should not be an expectation.

Nanny0gg Sun 20-Dec-15 11:58:50

Oh, and not for 7 hours a day for 5 days a week.

MissDexter Sun 20-Dec-15 11:59:39

but I thought grandparents took care of their grandkids for free!?

Not in my world sadly. If she's only 47 and looked after your kids for free full time, how would you expect her to support herself?

Hatethis22 Sun 20-Dec-15 12:02:04

£290 a month for a minimum of 120 hours of childcare. That's not grandparent territory that's underpaid childcare.

minininipie Sun 20-Dec-15 12:06:59

I don't think you should be expecting her to look after dd for free. But there seems to be a whole load of other issues here.

If you're happy with the care she gives and you want her to continue then you should work out a fair salary. Not pay her 30€ a week and then bitty extras. The extras stop and she gets paid properly.

Oakmaiden Sun 20-Dec-15 12:07:47

Why should she do it for free? You are asking her to do a full time job.

Lindy2 Sun 20-Dec-15 12:07:53

It's not unreasonable to pay her for providing childcare. However I would never have my children looked after by someone who smokes that much. Even old smoke on clothes can be harmful.
If you paid for professional childcare, yes it would cost more but you would also expect a professional service in a healthy environment, other children to socialise with and age appropriate activities.

Arfarfanarf Sun 20-Dec-15 12:08:16

You have no right to free childcare.
Some grandparents do it and that is very good of them. Some of them do it because they want to and some sadly do it because they are guilted into it.
You want or expect that someone with look after your child on a full time basis - thats a lot to ask. You expect they ought to do it for free and you tip over into taking the piss.

If she looks after your child full time for free - how does she work? Pay her bills? Eat?

You pay her 400 a month for a full time job which means she cant find other work and you feel youre the ones being taken for a ride?

No. You arent.
Shes doing you a huge favour. Shes clearly not a wealthy woman who could live off massive savings while being your childcare.
Just be happy the cost is so low.

And plan what you are going to do when she finds another job.

agapimou Sun 20-Dec-15 12:08:26

Well she will start work again in February when the insurance bill is paid off so its just a few more months to go.

I think what bothers me is she just assumes she can live off other people when things go wrong because she was irresponsible with her money. A young girl (from her Uni) came to stay with her for a few days when dd turned one. Mil must have borrowed hundreds from the poor girl to put on a spread for dd's birthday (which we didn't want) and also buy expensive shoes for dd as a gift (we bought her plastic tat, she's only one!)

dp has paid off this insurance bill once before in the past before we met because she didn't keep up with payments.

Sigh... its all so complicated. I guess i should just enjoy the cheap childcare while I have it.

ScarlettDarling Sun 20-Dec-15 12:08:38

While your mil is doing your childcare she can't possibly what is she meant to live on? In this situation, then yes, I do think you should pay her.

If you were talking about an afternoon each week or babysitting the odd evening, then that's totally different and paying in these circs would be odd.

Gileswithachainsaw Sun 20-Dec-15 12:10:04

While your mil is doing your childcare she can't possibly what is she meant to live on? In this situation, then yes, I do think you should pay her

does she not get any kind if benefit/welfare payment

agapimou Sun 20-Dec-15 12:11:01

Oh and we are not preventing her from looking for work. We would be supporting her anyway even if she did not have dd.

Sorry to drip feed, its all a tangled mess.

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