AIBU to expect a little help?(23 Posts)
Have namechanged to avoid outing myself.
Would genuinely like to know if this is one of those situations where I should just suck it up and accept this as part of being a parent, or if I am not expecting too much to get a wee bit of help from family here.
I have 2 kids under 7 and I have currently got a very nasty infection that is keeping me in constant pain, can't walk, generally feeling like sh*te. My family have the kids once a year for a couple of days so that me and my husband can get some time together (otherwise we can end up like ships that pass in the night because of our jobs). DH has a job that requires him to be away from tomorrow for a couple of days so I asked my mum (who lives an hour away) if she could come down and help. She is making excuses (she's tired, her backs been aching a bit etc). I also have siblings who never come and see us - they always say they will but nothing ever comes of it apart from those 2 days a year. I always thought, coming from a fairly large family and being the only one with kids that they'd be more involved. They adore my kids, they make that very clear, but I can't seem to get them more involved. I can't afford childcare, all my friends who I could ask in case of circumstances like this are away on holiday. AIBU to want some help here and feel upset that I'm not getting it? Or should I never have expected other people to pick up the pieces for me?
Please be gentle with me, I'm a tad emotional as have been in a lot of pain the last 5 days and so not much sleep either. Thanks
YANBU. I'm stunned that people act like this.
My own lovely mother died before I even had children. When I hear stories about grandparents who act like this, it makes me want to weep.
yanbu, don't know what to suggest for you but hope you feel better soon,
YANBU..have you been honest with your mum and told her how much pain your in and struggling? Perhaps she doesn't realise the severity of your illness and how much she is needed?
Are your siblings working so can't do short notice? YANBU about your DM even if she came to lend a hand rather than take control.
As it is I suggest takeaways or extremely easy foods, as much outdoor playing as possible and no guilt at all about screen time. Do hope you feel better soon.
Do any friends or neighbours have teens that might come to help or take DC to playground etc for some pocket money?worth asking around.
Is there a local sitter you can use?
If I was too ill to parent, I'd expect my DH to take emergency leave and help rather than others.
I also wonder if you've been really honest with your mum? Does she and your siblings have other commitments like work?
Could you see if your children could go on play dates/ sleepovers? Any parents you can explain your issue and promise to reciprocate when you're well enough?
Our local youth centre does some very cheap stuff for young kids in the holidays, is there anything like that round you?
PP is also right- could your husband take carers leave?
Sounds like you're having a rough time of it OP. I hope you feel better soon.
Does your mum work full time? Maybe it's difficult for her to take time off at short notice?
I sympathise. It's no joke when you're ill and have to soldier on.
When you're better, work on building a little social network of other mums in similar circumstances, so that you could support each other when needs arise.
I am going to probably get flamed but I think yabu to have expected having a family meant they would help. The kids are only the responsibility of you and your dh. That said it is pretty shitty of them to not help out when they know how things are for you.
I say this as someone who also has no help and parents who fawn over dd and then fuck off at the mere request of help. I do feel your pain!
Can you see whether there are any activity events being run by your local schools or sports centres that you could
dump drop the kids off at for a couple of hours to give yourself a break?
Iv found it depends on how close they live too. Inlaws used to live 20/30min drive and we saw them once on weekend if we visited. We now live 5 mins away and see the loads as it's easy for them to drop in or pick kids up from school as they are nearby.
Also make a plan if mum can't come down. Lots of dvds. If eldest is 7 then they can hope themselves to cereal and make a sandwhich with direction and will understand your ill. Arm yourself wiyh takeaway menu and get take out next two nights.
Your family are the responsibility of you and your H. Why can't he take time off to look after the DC and you?
"If I was too ill to parent, I'd expect my DH to take emergency leave and help rather than others."
"I think yabu to have expected having a family meant they would help. The kids are only the responsibility of you and your dh."
"Your family are the responsibility of you and your H."
Where do these attitudes come from? When do you posters think that this way of living came into being? Because it was certainly never this way historically. It is not this way in many other cultures.
So why is it that people having children, at this point in time and in the UK, are expected to do everything, alone, with no help?
I'm not saying that people with children can demand that their wider family help them and have a strop if they don't. But equally, I do think that wider family have a responsibility to help. Why shouldn't they? Why are we expected to do everything in isolation? It benefits nobody.
Because life is so much busier deadgood. Previous generations had a higher proportion of parents who stayed home to raise their kids - my mil never had to work and neither did my grandmothers. However that isn't the case anymore. House prices are mental, cost of living is rising disproportionately compared to wage rises. People are working longer and simple don't have the availability.
My parents are in their 60's and still working, dad full time in a job with a 3 hour daily commute and mum part time shift work. I would love them to be more helpful with dd. I would love to be able to have help so I could clean the house or so my ironing more often. But that doesn't happen and whilst it would be nice I have no right to expect to have that help.
poor you OP. My friend has no family, both work, but when she needs help she asks us and we pull together.
There's nothing wrong with quite a lot of electronic babysitter whilst you are unwell. Kids will probably think that's great.
does you mum feel a bit overwhelmed by looking after kiddies? Mine seems to have forgotten what to do with them, but she does help out.
"Because life is so much busier deadgood. Previous generations had a higher proportion of parents who stayed home to raise their kids - my mil never had to work and neither did my grandmothers. However that isn't the case anymore. House prices are mental, cost of living is rising disproportionately compared to wage rises. People are working longer and simple don't have the availability."
These are all reasons why we need more help, not less.
I take your point about your parents. But what I'm saying is that, where possible (and in your parent's position it sounds like it isn't), help should be offered. I just don't understand why there is this attitude that everyone has to be able to do everything themselves, it just can't be that way. It's not good for relationships, or for the kids, and it's therefore not good for society.
But you are missing my point - people can only help if they have time - mostly the 60 something generation are still working. Why is their free time less valuable? Why is it that because they are our parents they automatically have to help.
I wholeheartedly agree that where they can they should offer where there is a need like the op describes where she is ill and her Dh is away. Especially where parents are retired or don't work for whatever reason. However we cannot force them. We chose to have families and they are our responsibility- whilst help is lovely we have no right to expect/demand it
Thanks for your answers and sympathy everyone. It actually means a lot - I was genuinely wondering if I WBU.
Sadly DH can't take time off as he works for a very small company and there is no cover available at all. My siblings work during the week and seem to prioritise their social lives at the weekends (their prerogative, I know). My DM doesn't work but my dad still does 6 days a week, bless him - luckily he loves his job. The only close friends who I feel I could've asked about this are away at the mo but I've miraculously managed to get the kids into a holiday club on Thursday so at least I've only got to get them there and back.
The tele will be on quite a bit tomorrow methinks! Not quite the summer holiday the kids were hoping for, sadly.
God I hope I feel better soon!
I always found it was great to have a local teenager who could come in and play with the children while you rested. Invaluable. My dd did this for neighbour as a teenager too.Forget family. Build your own support system.
I agree Deadgood
My dad still works, mum is retired but they help out when they can. We all help each other out that's what a family is about and I will be bringing up DC to hold the same values. Of course family aren't obliged to help, but they should and it's shitty if they don't. Hope you feel better soon OP.
"Of course family aren't obliged to help, but they should and it's shitty if they don't."
where's don't you think you are missing my point? I said - twice - that if both parents are working full time then they can't help and I understand that. But come on! We see it all the time on here - GPs who aren't working who refuse to help because "they don't have to". The OP has just said her mother doesn't work.
Regarding her free time. This is the way I see it. You don't have a kid, kick them out at 18 and refuse to engage with them ever again. When you have children, you commit to them! You raise them, you continue to care for them, and when they have kids of their own, IF they ask for help and you're in a position to give it, then that's exactly what you do.
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