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to expect any babysitter including grandparents to be sober

(282 Posts)
mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:25:08

am trying not to get drawn into a text war with grandparents.

my take on this is that anyone looking after my DC, babysitter, family, whoever, should be sober. To me it's just a given, unless for example family are all at a ver special occasion and there are children playing at wedding or something, but even so I wouldn't get 'drunk' in a situation like that.

Grandparents are arguing with me and calling me unreasonable. saying that if they look after DC at their house they have a right to drink and I can't tell them what to do in their own home.

To which the only response I can really give is fine, you just won't be babysitting.

Context to this is when i've seen the grandparents babysit other DC in the family, IMHO they have not just had a little to drinks but quite a few units each.

I've probably provoked them now by saying that to drink while looking after children is negligent behaviour. But that is my opinion. They are fighting it along the lines of 'we are not negligent and you can't tell us what to do'.


TheWinterOfOurDiscountTents Mon 20-Feb-17 21:27:22

Depends. Do you mean completely sober (as in not a drop) or do you mean not actually drunk?
I have no problem with family babysitters having a glass of wine etc, but then I trust them to look after the children as they see fit. If you don't, then alcohol is neither here nor there.

Wolfiefan Mon 20-Feb-17 21:29:38

Do you never have a drink?
I wouldn't drink in charge of someone else's child. I wouldn't feel happy doing that.
If you can't agree then they can't look after your children.

19lottie82 Mon 20-Feb-17 21:29:52

How much did they have to drink exactly?
"A Few" units is only 2 cans of beer or a large glass of wine

Were they actually "drunk"? .

Splitting a bottle of wine with dinner, fine.
Getting absolutely rat arsed, not fine.

mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:30:14

In theory, I wouldn't mind 'a glass of wine'. Trouble is, I probably don't trust it to be just that and, honestly, would have thought that spending time with grandchildren was more important than the need to drink which they can do at any other time.

Happy to hear other opinions, just finding it hard to get my head around it.

NancyJoan Mon 20-Feb-17 21:30:39

Well, I think you're a bit daft to call them negligent, as if you have ever had a drink while in charge of your DC the same could apply.

I think a glass of wine while babysitting = fine, half a bottle probably not.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Mon 20-Feb-17 21:32:56

Can you not enjoy a glass of wine and enjoy spending time with the grandchildren then. Why not?

NancyJoan Mon 20-Feb-17 21:33:10

I probably don't trust it to be just that and, honestly, would have thought that spending time with grandchildren was more important than the need to drink which they can do at any other time.

But won't the DC be in bed, if they are baby sitting at their own house and having a glass with dinner?

mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:33:15

Yes I sometimes have a drink, not teetotal.
Not with DC around though - more likely to be after bed time, and not if they are ill and any chance of needing to care for them during the night.

An example would be a previous occasion where one on second beer, the other refilling large red wine glass. To my mind drunk as they begin to talk louder, think they are oh so funny. Signs that tell me people are drunk.

I just don't understand why anyone would feel they 'can't go without' for a night while they look after a child.

mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:34:19

Nancy, no they definitely mean while the grandchildren are awake, not after they have gone to sleep.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Mon 20-Feb-17 21:34:28

In laws, I assume.

Lexie1970 Mon 20-Feb-17 21:34:41

My rule of thumb would be could you drive a car if need be? My DP likes a drink and when DS was small i drank very little..

randomsabreuse Mon 20-Feb-17 21:35:17

One of them within drink drive limits would be my thing - and we apply it to us as well - so we agree on designated driver in case of emergency.

bigearsthethird Mon 20-Feb-17 21:36:02

Depends on how old the children are and would they be in bed asleep when grandparents had a drink? Or would grandparents be getting sloshed at dinner whilst looking after a young baby?

MoreThanUs Mon 20-Feb-17 21:36:06

I think if you can't trust them to not get totally wasted, you shouldn't trust them to look after your children. Having a few sociable drinks is totally different though, and I wouldn't have a problem with this.

mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:36:15

throughthick no unfortunately my own!

mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:37:20

Let's say 3, 5
Not asleep, definitely while they are awake - getting sloshed at dinner sounds about right

Basicbrown Mon 20-Feb-17 21:37:51

I think yabu op, if we are talking 2 drinks. If they were passing out on the sofa that's different. You sound hard work tbh, they like a drink, you aren't bothered either way - why does it matter to you so much?

Guavaf1sh Mon 20-Feb-17 21:38:19

Totally agree with the drink drive equivalent above - being teetotal is absurd and accusing them of negligence is nuts

ThroughThickAndThin01 Mon 20-Feb-17 21:38:53

Oh that's a surprise grin

Have they always been drinkers, or is it a new thing?

MoreThanUs Mon 20-Feb-17 21:39:16

I'm really surprised at PP saying one person should be able to drive! So you and your partner would never have a couple of glases of wine each? If I needed to get to hospital in an emergency I'd ring a taxi. It's not happened to me in 6 years, and very possibly never will.

bigearsthethird Mon 20-Feb-17 21:39:41

I'd say you're not being unreasonable then. I wouldn't be happy with that from someone babysitting. Sounds like more than an innocent glass of wine with their steak

mylongawaitedlife Mon 20-Feb-17 21:40:03

random let's say one having drunk enough to need to go and lie down and sleep, the other I really wouldn't want driving - and they are both ok with this and arguing with me saying it's their right to drink in their home if they want to. my response was yes it is, but not while looking after my DC which is my choice.

merrymouse Mon 20-Feb-17 21:40:08

I think it is absolutely your call.

You clearly feel that they don't know how to manage their drinking when looking after children, therefore when they babysit you don't want them to drink.

Plenty of people don't drink and many more never get 'drunk' around their children. They should be able to respect your wishes and not drink for an evening if they want to babysit. You clearly don't need them to babysit, so the choice is up to them.

donajimena Mon 20-Feb-17 21:40:20

How old are the children? My parents regularly babysat and drank. More than driving limit (our family has a zero limit) but not too much that you wouldnt be able to respond to an emergency.
A few years ago my youngest fell out of bed and cut the back of his head. I'd had wine (not shed loads but I don't drink anything and drive) so took a taxi to A & E.
Are they known for drinking until they pass out?

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