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Should I have gone to work?

(56 Posts)
Pepperpug Wed 14-Feb-18 11:55:34

I have had a bit of an argument with my Mum this morning and I’m now wondering if I went a bit OTT.

I work part time and my mum looks after DS when I’m at work, she lives nearby so comes to my house early in the morning, 6am, and usually goes back to bed for a few hours until DS wakes up. This morning I went in to her room and shocked by the seriously strong smell of alcohol in the room, I asked her had she been drinking the previous night and she said that she had stayed up drinking til 2. As I got ready for work I began to feel increasingly uncomfortable with the thought of leaving my son with someone who was clearly still drunk so I told my mum my concerns at which point she got up and said she was going home.

I was planning on telling her to get a few hours sleep and I’d go in half day but since she has left she has text me saying how angry she is with me that I humiliated her like that and that I clearly don’t trust her, which of course isn’t true.

I have explained to her that it’s not an issue if trust, I just need her to be 100% when she is looking after her grandson at which point she said I should trust her judgment and that she would of told me if she didn’t feel 100%, and now she refuses to answer the phone to me.

Am I being unreasonable? Should I have trusted her judgment?

We never argue, I don’t really know what to do...hmm

ChasedByBees Wed 14-Feb-18 11:57:51

I wouldn’t leave my child with someone drunk. Time to get professional childcare.

Callamia Wed 14-Feb-18 12:00:49

Her embarrassment is not your problem.
For sure, I’m sure many parents have looked after their own kids with a hangover, but I think that’s not the same thing as looking after someone else’s children. That’s just not on.

blueskyinmarch Wed 14-Feb-18 12:05:38

Thing is though, it is a trust thing. You were absolutely right not to trust the care of your child to her given she was probably still very drunk. Would she have even woken up for him when he needed her? If she was drunk her judgement would be impaired. Does she generally have an issue with alcohol?

Blackteadrinker77 Wed 14-Feb-18 12:15:08

Isn't it illegal to be drunk in charge of a minor or am I making that up?

pastabest Wed 14-Feb-18 12:18:04

If it was no parents would ever be allowed to have a drink again black? Think about it grin

crashbangwhallop Wed 14-Feb-18 12:18:32

Black I'm pretty sure it is illegal yes. I don't know if there are limits but I think it's more if anything happened the police would use it against you.

PlanNumber Wed 14-Feb-18 12:19:18

I don't know, depends I suppose on how drunk she was and how much of it was "just" a lingering smell.

It can't be unusual for parents to be with their DC the morning after a night out.

PlanNumber Wed 14-Feb-18 12:20:57

Only in a public place and if the child is under 7 Blackteadrinker

mindutopia Wed 14-Feb-18 12:35:51

You absolutely did the right thing. I think you need to look into finding proper childcare unless this is the first time anything like this has ever happened and you don't think it will happen again. It's definitely worrisome that she is staying up til 2am getting drunk knowing she only has to hold it together a few days a week (presumably?) to look after your son. She surely could stay out late partying any other night if she wanted as she doesn't have any other responsibilities. If she can't keep it together a couple days a week, that would be a massive red flag for me. It's definitely different than drinking around your own children (though even then I've rarely been up til 2am knowing I had to function at 6am the next morning with my kids).

BewareOfDragons Wed 14-Feb-18 12:54:36


It's your mum, it was 6am, and you even said she was likely going to sleep for a few hours until your DC got up. Like you would have done yourself (slept) if you'd been home and not working so early this morning.

Your child would have been fine while she slept, as fine as she would have been if you'd slept.

She's not a childminder. She's not a nursery. She's your mum doing you a massive, regular, time-consuming favour so you can work. One night out in a long time where a couple of hours sleep while your DC was sleeping would have sorted it is not the disaster you made it out to be.

You could have talked to her later today about alcohol and watching your DC.

Have you never had a drink or two on the couch in the evening, meaning you couldn't drive your own DC anywhere if there was an emergency? AS in you, too, would have to call someone...? I'd find it hard to believe if you hadn't.

Embarrassingbodies Wed 14-Feb-18 13:00:50

Depends how much she had/how drunk she was/your experience of her being drunk in the past.

If she’s known to be an awful drunk or just generally not suitable around your child in that state, then you made the right call.

Everyone handles alcohol differently, for example I would have been completely sober once I woke up. So it all depends on her and if you truly thought she would have been fine with your son

Abra1de Wed 14-Feb-18 13:02:47

*poster pastabest Wed 14-Feb-18 12:18:04
If it was no parents would ever be allowed to have a drink again black? Think about it grin*

I drink small amounts. I don’t get drunk.

halfwitpicker Wed 14-Feb-18 13:06:15


Time for nursery or a childminder I'd say.

ShapelyBingoWing Wed 14-Feb-18 13:15:38

Is your mum your paid childcare or does she regularly come out of her way to provide free childcare?

How much had she drunk? She time she stopped isn't really the relevant bit.

Is she a messy drunk? Or is she the kind of person who can function quite well after several?

Regardless of the answers to the above, which are definitely relevant, I don't think you've handled it very well. Because even though you're saying it's not a trust thing, it very obviously is. You didn't trust that she was responsible enough to know whether she was in a fit state to look after your child. And that says to me that you need to start forking out for formal childcare.

Earlyup Wed 14-Feb-18 13:20:27

It IS an issue of trust. You trust her to be in a capable condition of looking after your child. If she was 'still clearly drunk' by the time you should have left then she's untrustworthy.

Ubercornsdiscoball Wed 14-Feb-18 13:23:56

I agree with @BewareOfDragons to be honest

LunarGirl Wed 14-Feb-18 13:25:09

You say she was clearly still drunk. Why? Was she acting drunk or was it just the smell and the time she'd been drinking until?
How old is your DC?

Hoppinggreen Wed 14-Feb-18 13:25:52

I doubt it’s illegal but if there was any neglect or anything happened where alcohol was deemed to be a factor ( ie child got hurt as adult was too drunk to supervise) then SS could get involved I suppose

rookiemere Wed 14-Feb-18 13:26:48

It depends what age your DS is I think.
If he is under 3 then definitely I'd be unhappy about this, but if say he's 7+ then less of an issue.

sourpatchkid Wed 14-Feb-18 13:27:25

Give it until tomorrow and talk to her then. Give her a chance to reflect on it. I agree with you, and paid or not I would never get pissed, have less than 4 hours sleep and think it ok to look after someone else's child

dantdmistedious Wed 14-Feb-18 13:29:47

I don't think i would have gone to work either.

BUT your mum is doing you a presumably regular favour by getting up early and coming to your house to provide free childcare, perhaps she doesn't want to be restricted by that any more.

NoSquirrels Wed 14-Feb-18 13:30:24

I don’t think I’d have been able to leave my child in the care of someone still “clearly drunk” either. Most responsible parents would not.

If it happened with my mum she’d be mortified and embarrassed but once sober would agree I was right and never do it again. It wouldn’t happen with my Mum, though.

Does your mum regularly have alcohol issues?

NoSquirrels Wed 14-Feb-18 13:34:06

If this was paid-for childcare, it would be a sackable offence.

It’s free childcare by family and that makes the politics of questioning decisions difficult but ultimately leaving the care of the child in the hands of someone drunk is not OK, and unless your Mum backs down and apologises for her lack of judgement (which could happen to anyone as a one-off, poor decision making & not wanting to let you down) then I would start to make alternative childcare arrangements.

Pepperpug Wed 14-Feb-18 13:37:58

Thanks for the replies. This was the reason I was asking for opinions, I am just not sure if I went OTT.

I hate that she is embarrassed/angry but I'm also annoyed that she is refusing to talk to me, it's so unlike her to act like this.

I wouldn't say that she has any issues with alcohol but she does like a drink most weekends, this has never been a problem before.

Just to add, I do pay her to look after my son and I would hate to have to change these arrangements but think I'll have to start looking at other options if we don't resolve this.

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