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babysitting

(18 Posts)
florenceandmillie Wed 28-Dec-16 17:45:36

Bit of background: I am the oldest of four children and have a younger sister who lives close by. We both live near to my parents while our brothers are further away. I have two girls aged 2 and 4, my sister has a 1 year old girl.

My mum looks after my youngest one day a week in term time (I am a teacher) while my sister takes her child to work with her (she is a nanny). Because mum mum regularly babysits so I can work, we hardly ever ask her to in the evening. As a result my husband and I almost never go out. I accept that I chose to have the children so not blaming anyone. We maybe go out together without the children three times a year. My sister goes out pretty much every weekend and my mum (or her mother-in-law) babysits.

Anyway, we asked my mum if we could go to the cinema this Friday since we can't even remember when we last went - and in fact she offered to take the children so we could go. Today I popped round and she mentioned that since agreeing with me that she would babysit, my sister had asked her to have her daughter so that she could go out. Therefore she said that we could only go to a matinee so that she could look after my niece in the evening.

AIBU to be super pissed off? This is not the first time it has happened. I feel my sister's needs / child is prioritised over mine regularly.

VeryBitchyRestingFace Wed 28-Dec-16 17:51:49

That does sound bad. sad

Is there a reason you won't use a babysitter other than your mother?

MistresssIggi Wed 28-Dec-16 17:52:16

That's odd. You asked first. What does your mum say when you bring this up? Is your sister just super bossy?

Soubriquet Wed 28-Dec-16 17:57:02

Argh I know the feeling

That's the sort of thing my mum would do... Her excuse is that my sisters dd was her first born grandchild and is used to being spoilt. It isn't fair to suddenly stop that because others have been born.

I don't have an answer.

Sorry flowers

MyKidsHaveTakenMySanity Wed 28-Dec-16 17:57:13

Whilst no one is entitled to grandparent's free childcare I can definitely see how this has pissed you off. I would be so mad. My husband and I also never go out together because we essentially "use our GP babysitting up" on essential events such as needing one watched while we take another to their swimming lessons or things like shopping trips for Christmas presents where the kids can't be around etc.
In your case I would have perhaps said, "Sorry but immediately after you agreed to watch DDs we bought the tickets and booked our table. Can't sis go out another night seeing that she is so often out socialising?"
I also don't use babysitters outside family as a) they can be very expensive therefore making a night out simply not worth it and b) I'm not keen on a relative stranger being in my house and responsible for my children.

BugPlaster Wed 28-Dec-16 18:00:16

It's potentially because you said cinema, isn't it? That could be an afternoon thing. Annoying though, I agree.

florenceandmillie Wed 28-Dec-16 18:00:38

My MIL lives over an hour's drive away so seems unfair to ask her. Don't really have any other babysitting options as I think my children are too young to get a stranger in and don't have any local friends without their own young children.

Not really super bossy - just seems she's the more important / popular family member IDK. Her and my mum often go out together and don't invite me, so guess they're closer. BTW I'm not a shit daughter, I do appreciate their help and reciprocate favours. We let both parents stay with us for a month last year when a house move fell through.

SheldonCRules Wed 28-Dec-16 18:01:12

Your mum is trying to accommodate you both which seems fair. Is it really the end of the world to go earlier?

You have free childcare every week and so does your sister, albeit not always from the same person. It's likely your mum has yours more due to that.

MarciaBlaine Wed 28-Dec-16 18:10:48

You need to find a local babysitter. They won't be a stranger after the first time.

titchy Wed 28-Dec-16 18:13:53

Get your friends to babysit for you, and in return you babysit for them.

ETanny Wed 28-Dec-16 18:15:29

I'd not be best pleased, in fact I'd probably feel peeved off. For me I'd feel it was first come, first served kind of thing so she should have told your sister what she could do. Have you spoke to your sister and asked her to go another time if it's a regular occurrence for her.

yoowhoo Wed 28-Dec-16 18:16:45

I guess there may be a back story but if not then I would try to look at it innocently and that maybe your mum is just trying to please you both and you can go to the cinema earlier but can't go on a night out earlier?

lanbro Wed 28-Dec-16 18:21:14

Why not start a babysitting circle with other parents? It's so important to have time with your partner and a few times a year isn't enough!

Munstermonchgirl Wed 28-Dec-16 18:39:29

It's unreasonable of her to let you down after agreeing first that she would look after your child. But you've created a tricky situation for yourselves by not paying for a babysitter rather than relying on freebies. Perhaps your mother feels that she does enough by already providing weekly childcare for you? She may not say it, but she probably feels she 'evens things out' by babysitting for your sister because you're getting a weekly all day 'babysit.' The simple answer is to pay for proper care (the issue about not wanting to leave the kids with a stranger is daft- they really won't be a stranger once you've met them!)

BIgBagofJelly Wed 28-Dec-16 18:41:44

YANBU. She committed to you, fair enough if she changed her mind or something else came up but to prioritise your sister, or for your sister to even ask if she knew she had promised you isn't fair at all.

SheepyFun Wed 28-Dec-16 19:04:00

I can definitely understand you being annoyed, though you're very lucky to have that much help - we've had a total of 5 hours of family babysitting since DD has been born, 4 of those so I could visit DH in hospital.

If you would benefit from more time with your husband (definitely understandable), then you could ask your daughter's keyworker (I'm assuming from her age that she's at nursery, though I realise she could be at school) - that way, at least one child already knows the carer, and you know they are capable of caring for children. You'd have to pay (obviously), but at least the care would be competent.

Ilovecaindingle Wed 28-Dec-16 19:40:13

If your mother raised 4 kids it's surely not unrealistic that she could cope babysitting both at the same time?? Do the kids not spend any time together with just grandma? I have only been a gm since Feb but can't imagine picking him over others if /when I get some more!! I have my gs 2 days a week (2 nights overnight) and certainly don't consider it babysitting!!

EggysMom Wed 28-Dec-16 19:44:47

OP, how did your Mum react when you said "Really? I thought you were looking after our child(ren) that evening, and I've made plans / bought tickets now".

You didn't? I bet your sister isn't quite so shy & retiring smile

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