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To say this re "Grandparent's should be expected to babysit"?

(29 Posts)
CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 19:43:55

Need some validation here, ladies. As some of you know DH and I don't speak to PIL they do sometimes come up in conversation. DH and I were discussing why GMIL and MIL have such a bad relationship and he thinks it's because of GMIL's attitude and because MIL said GPIL refused to babysit DH and his brothers. According to MIL GMIL outright said to Her "Don't expect us to babysit." Right, maybe she didn't have to be so blunt but she has a right to say what she will or won't do.

BG: MIL and her husband's DM don't get on. GMIL has a sour attitude and doesn't have a brain to mouth filter, she'd happily throw insults at you for hours on end if you let her. MIL and her are similar in certain aspect i.e both have no brain to mouth filter which is why DH thinks they don't get on.

MIL both thought they should have offered to babysit as both she and FIL worked and because 'they're grandparents'. Was I BU to tell DH that his mother was wrong as it was her and FIL's choice to have children and that there should be no expectation of anyone to babysit? He thinks I'm just saying it as we don't have a relationship with PIL anymore. hmm

MangoBiscuit Sun 27-Dec-15 19:47:00

Of course they're not duty bound to babysit. It's nice if GPs can help out, but it's not something parents are entitled to. If they babysat for other GCs, but refused your MIL, I can understand some bitterness there, but if they're treating all GC the same, then I see no issue.

MangoBiscuit Sun 27-Dec-15 19:48:16

Oh, and FWIW, my MIL also told me outright when I was expecting DC1 that she wouldn't be babysitting, so don't expect it! We still get on really well.

FishWithABicycle Sun 27-Dec-15 19:48:28

Yanbu - grandparents have zero obligations. Of course it is lovely when a grandparent offers to babysit or is generous and involved in other ways but none if that is obligation, it is a kindness that should be received with gratitude not a right to be expected or worse demanded.

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 19:49:51

They treated all of their GC the same so I completely agree with you, Mango. I do think any grandparent should be expected to do it as its their 'duty'.

ollieplimsoles Sun 27-Dec-15 19:53:49

What if its the other way? What do you do if you have a grandparent who expects to be able to babysit when it suits them and think its their right to take your dc when ever they want?

I wish mil would say 'don't expect me to babysit'...we would probably get on a lot better.

90sforever Sun 27-Dec-15 19:59:10

I think it's a normal scenario for grandparents to want to baby sit and spend time with their grandchildren. Personally I've never come across a grandparent irl who doesn't want to.
It does sound a bit like you'd find fault with your mil no matter what though

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 19:59:51

I see your point, Ollie. Because of my history with PIL being grabby with my DC I hated when they constantly demanded to babysit. But that was the point they demanded, if we had a better relationship (and they didn't undermine me as my children's mother) and they possibly asked instead of demanding I probably would have been happy to oblige.

With MIL she thinks that GMIL should have offered to babysit as she was a GP and it was her duty and brought it up with her constantly.

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 20:02:27

90s, because of our relationship I agree I would probably not agree with her. But I also know there might be some GPs out there who don't want to babysit and shouldn't have to just because it's a normal scenario in life.

amitha Sun 27-Dec-15 20:03:38

My dad said to me when i was pregnant that he wouldn't babysit! Kind of stung but it's his life. We have no gp babysitters, actually no babysitters at all!

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 21:55:02

We're the same, amitha. My DM still works and has a ever changing schedule so babysitting is a no go for us too unless we pay a sitter which I don't mind doing as t would be a rare occurrence.

diddl Sun 27-Dec-15 22:08:39

I would have thought saying "don't expect me to babysit" isn't necessarily the same as saying that you never will iyswim-just that you don't want to be taken advantage of!

I mean if both the parents were working, then it was probably said so as not to be drawn into regular childcare/babysitting.

Doesn't mean they wouldn't have sat for the odd night out or in an emergency does it?

SaucyJack Sun 27-Dec-15 22:12:13

YANBU that GPs should not be expected to babysit for the parents' convenience.

However, my PILs not only will not babysit, but they won't ever spend time alone with any of their GC as they simply don't want to. Never once taken any of them to a farm or out to dinner or had them round to watch a film- and in all honesty I do consider them as slightly shit, inferior GPs for it.

Both my mum and BIL's wife's DPs are much more hands on, and they are much better grandparents for it.

AutumnLeavesArePretty Sun 27-Dec-15 22:16:48

Much better they were honest from the start.

When your choose to become a parents its a choice you make, it shouldn't affect the lives of others. I regularly see poor grandparents looking shattered as they have to provide childcare. Your see on MN hrandparents being called selfish if they dare want a life of their own.

ohtheholidays Sun 27-Dec-15 22:21:12

No I agree with you,two of my poor Aunties(my Dad's sisters)have always been expected to look after they're grandchildren,at a drop of a hat with no warning and they're left with them for hours on end or sometimes for a few days at a time.

Both of my aunties are not very well anymore and they're both alot older now.One has recovered from breast cancer and the other is having heart problems.They don't say no because they no they're children would no doubt kick off.I'm really pissed off with my cousins that put onto my poor aunties and uncles all the time.

A few years ago my Mum did speak to both of my Aunties(they were all really close more like sisters than sister in laws)and begged them to both speak up for themselves because she was so worried about they're bad health and the exhaustion from looking after the children all the time.My cousins did ease of for a little while with they're demands.

museumum Sun 27-Dec-15 22:23:14

It all depends how it's said. I don't expect my parents to babysit at all. However if they'd said when I announced my pregnancy "well don't expect us to babysit!" I'd still have been hurt. It can be quite a cutting thing to say if said bluntly like that.
I actually would ask beg my parents to babysit if it was a dire emergency (dh critically ill in hospital and me wanting to sit with him for example) and really would expect them to do it for their love of me.

ollieplimsoles Sun 27-Dec-15 22:23:42

It does sound a bit like you'd find fault with your mil no matter what though

Christ its the opposite, I'm the only one left still trying to find something good about her, even her own son has given up looking.

Rivercam Sun 27-Dec-15 22:27:15

I think it slightly depends on what they mean my babysitting. I never expected my dc's GPs to babysit on a regular basis, but did ask them on the odd occasion (maybe 2-3 times a year).

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 22:35:48

ollie, I think that was directed at me. grin

I know it would have stung for GMIL to say that after DH's brother was born but as I know it GMIL would babysit if there was an emergency i.e someone is sick, in hospital or if PIL couldn't get anyone else or sort out childcare for work related issues. But when it came to general life she didn't want to be a constant carer as she did have a life of her own back when DH and his siblings were young.

Bambambini Sun 27-Dec-15 22:36:40

It depends on what you mean by babysitting. If it is expected as a regular thing or even expected for childcare then YANBU. But TBH, I think it's strange if a GP never wants to babysit or help at all or spend time with their gc unless they are too,old or really not up to the job etc.

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 22:41:08

Bamba, GMIL treated all GC the same in terms of babysitting but she would still visit and have them round or take them out to treat them. The problem (for MIL) was she outright told her that she wouldn't be used for childcare and that was the end of it.

Now that I think of it it might have been for the better as further down the line GMIL had a plenthora of health problems and still does. She's in constant pain nowadays and barely goes out as she's simply not able.

Lovelydiscusfish Sun 27-Dec-15 22:43:35

I don't think for one second that grandparents should be expected to provide regular, weekly daycare for preschoolers for free (though obviously, it's great when they are happy to, and hurrah for that!)
I do think that I would feel a bit annoyed with my parents if they were never happy to have dd for the odd evening (while we nip out for a meal) or indeed, the odd sleepover, for us to get a night away. After all, we are all family, we do all love each other, I am happy to do things for them, so this is part of the normal run of supporting each other, surely?
(Have thus far held off from getting child-free db, and his DP, to have dd for a sleepover - but their time is coming - they don't get to be cool, most beloved, best ever aunty and uncle for ever without properly earning their stripes!) smile

Noodledoodledoo Sun 27-Dec-15 22:44:56

We were told when we announced my pregnancy at 12 weeks - don't expect any babysitting. This from my MIL to DH. It did hurt as it was a pants reaction to our news. In 15 months they have met GC 4 times!

CiritheLionessofCintra Sun 27-Dec-15 22:59:17

Lovely, I barely remember what a meal out tastes or feels like! It would be a shock to my system to get one. smile Though I agree supporting each other is the norm and GP's wanting to babysit is the usually scenario but GMIL is in the mindset that she didn't pick to have anymore children and shouldn't be used for that. She still took the GC out for treats and had them over for visits and such when she was able but overnights were always a no go for her.

BackforGood Sun 27-Dec-15 23:14:01

I was going to say the same as Bambambini, and Rivercam - It does depend on what you mean by 'babysit'... your talk of 'working FT' implies that you are talking about childcare, which, in my book, is a very, very, very different thing from the occasional bit of babysitting. I certainly didn't expect my parents nor dh's parents to provide childcare when we were at work, but it did come as a surprise how little dh's parents were willing to help us out on the odd occasion with a bit of babysitting (young GPs, she never worked outside the home, they drove, didn't have that many commitments outside of working hours, ours were the first grandchildren). As lovelydiscusfish says, it's just part of helping each other out, as family, or other people you love, even if they didn't actually enjoy babysitting.

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