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School run - always asked but never reciprocated

(263 Posts)
Fro611 Sun 27-Jan-19 08:58:31

I have a friend (I've known her since our kids started at the school a year ago) who is asking me "casually" almost every day to drop her 4 year old son off at home after school (where the Nanny is waiting). She works fulltime but has permission to leave each day to do the school run. She started off occasionally asking if I could pick him up due to a "meeting she couldn't move" or because she had to drive to another town for a meeting - and it was only once, maybe twice a week. But lately she is asking me pretty much every day and for reasons like "Can you pick him up so I can finish early" or just asking me to pick him up without even giving a reason.

It's difficult as I am friendly with the mum - but I feel like she is pushing the friendship by asking almost every day just because it's convenient for her not to have to do it. Over the past 2 weeks I've started making up excuses to get out of it. It's only a ten minute detour for me to drive past her house. But I also feel that at only 4 years old she should be picking her son up regularly if she can and it's not my responsibility to pickup her kid every day.

It also annoys me because on the days she does pick her own son up from school she NEVER offers to drop my son home - not even once.

Am I being unreasonable in not helping her out every day? I would have thought she would have realized by my response (and excuse making) over the past 2 weeks that it's become too much and backed off - but if anything it's made her ask even more (I think she feels if I don't do it one day then I have to do it the next to make up for it).

Aside from this issue we get along quite well and it's really irritating me that she is totally oblivious that it's becoming too much. She even waits for me at the school gate each day to make sure she can "casually" ask me to do pickup and if I miss her (if I have dropped and left early) she texts me within ten minutes of drop off time asking me to do pickup.

I really really hate confrontation. Do I just keep making up excuses and hope she gets it? Or should I say something blunt and risk making things awkward between us?

SmiledWithTheRisingSun Thu 31-Jan-19 09:20:53

Ask her to pick up?

Teachesofpeachess Thu 31-Jan-19 09:10:40

OP- did you speak to her?

Gingefringe Tue 29-Jan-19 17:29:13

10-15 mins a day builds up to around an hour a week - a lot of time for you to be missing out with your own child. An hour of driving would also use a fair amount of fuel and I bet she hasn't offered to cover any of this for you.
I think I would say " .... sorry, can't help at the moment - just found a job where my employer lets me out for the school run and I have to be quick - I may have to ask for your help occasionally" ...

Yearofthemum Tue 29-Jan-19 16:01:40

OP, my experience when my kids were young (older teens now) is that there are two kinds of friends/acquaintances. There are real friends who would not take advantage, and with whom you have a mutually supportive and beneficial relationship. Then there are the others, who will ask a favour, and get it, and quickly move on to constant piss taking.

I dealt with a number of the latter in those days - the parent who wanted (and got) free use of my nanny for two terms and then wouldn't babysit one day whilst I had a caesarean. Because her plans were not yet clear. The parent who left me her twins till 930 on the evening one day a week and never reciprocated. The lady who lived in the house opposite who would quietly go out when her daughter drifted over to our house, sometimes for hours. The lady who asked me to drop and collect her daughter to/from a class across the city every weekend , even though my child not longer attended.
These sorts of people don't care at all about you, and are often the same people who find it difficult to hear the word no.
My advice would be to say it doesn't really work out with your plans and leave it at that. No explanation needed, and if she asks for one, repeat the initial statement. You don't owe her an explanation and it would be cheeky (and tellingly so) of her to ask for one.

kittyhello Tue 29-Jan-19 14:34:43

barnetparent you may want to start a new thread with your question in order to get more replies.

Re: op and lifts, why don't you just say that pick up/drop off time is when you and your dc chat about their day etc etc because when you get home it's all rush rush making dinner/homework/pack lunches/after school activities so really it's the only time in the day when you and dc get time to chat uniterruppted.

Or ask your dc even if they want to share their mum with another child, albeit not for long. I always read these cf posts and think what about the op's child they might not want another child with them. This happened to a friend of mine, whereby she was picking up/dropping off a friend's child and her own dd didn't like it, she also didn't like the other child either.

I understand you wanting to avoid confrontation so that to me would be a good get out clause.

blueskiesandforests Tue 29-Jan-19 14:27:45

@barnetparent you need to start an entirely new thread to get replies. You won't get many posting on a long thread about a different topic.

barnetparent Tue 29-Jan-19 14:01:06

Message deleted by MNHQ as it was posted in the wrong place.

HJWT Tue 29-Jan-19 14:00:19

How far away from the school does she live ?

manicmij Tue 29-Jan-19 13:48:05

Why on earth does she have a nanny who can't drive. Of course another car would be needed. Point out that a taxi would probably be cheaper than buying a car for the nanny. This "friend" has found someone who is accommodating her work, finances and style of life. Hard as it may be you need to be firm and just say you can no longer pick and deliver her son. No reasons need be given by you.

Crockof Tue 29-Jan-19 13:36:37

Sorry not read all replies but just be honest. I helped a parent out with school run for a week which I'd agreed to, the following week he was dropped at my house again, I did it that day but them saw parents and said I'm sorry it's not convenient. I'm always happy to help out in an emergency /special reason I can't do everyday

shitholiday2018 Tue 29-Jan-19 13:21:19

I got into similar pickles. You’ll find that there will always be one or two cheeky fuckers who take advantage of you. It doesn’t matter that you’re going anyway. I do all the school runs bar my long work day and often get asked to help out. Those who reciprocate (ie who are genuine mates, who will return the favour when I get stuck, or do other things to reflect the friendship and/or the favour etc) I am more than happy to help. Makes no odds as I’m going anyway. Those who only ever take and never give, I say no. Sometimes I make up a reason, sometimes I just say I can’t. But I stick to it religiously.

I looked after a family for years after school. I then asked one favour which I knew they could do but they made it awkward. So I stopped looking after theirs. I said my work plans had changed, end of story. I had to grow a backbone.

Stop saying yes, simple as that. And she will eventually stop asking. She needs to get a nanny who can drive. You are not be paid to fulfil that role. You will feel 10 stone lighter when you have done this, after the initial awkwardness about standing up for yourself. Do It!

EvelineUK Tue 29-Jan-19 13:09:36

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Doghorsechicken Tue 29-Jan-19 12:26:53

Reading PP ignore what I said ha! People really are CF aren’t they!

Doghorsechicken Tue 29-Jan-19 12:25:46

I would just say “I don’t mind picking him up for emergencies” (real family emergencies not ‘oh I have a meeting I can’t move’) “but I think you need to make permanent arrangements to pick your son up from school”

Fairenuff Tue 29-Jan-19 12:20:54

Yep, checked out four days ago.

DuckbilledSplatterPuff Tue 29-Jan-19 12:20:34

*cold Turkey - although other turkeys are available.

DuckbilledSplatterPuff Tue 29-Jan-19 12:19:50

Please don't tell her you wiill do this in a real emergency. I did this and this is how the CF continued to impose on me. Everything was an emergency. She would ask me to have her DS the next morning by email at 11 pm at night - as if I would log on to my computer and check emails at that time of night. So of course it was ALWAYS an emergency. And your definition of emergency will be very far apart.
if you say help in emergency she will take that to = still available.
You need to get her to go cod turkey or she will never look for alternatives. She might ease off for a week or so as mine did but will be back with her difficult life and problems which she wants you to sort out. Keep the emergency option open and you will have endless emotional blackmail "I thought you were a friend".. "You know I'd help you (once a year for show) ,, There's no one else I can ask... My boss is very difficult. She already knows you are kind and helpful and don't like confrontation so she will use this to make you feel back and at the back of that there is a little threat that she will tell the other mums . None of that is worth putting up with what she is doing to you at the moment and will continue to do unless you cut off the supply completely. Make other friend and other commitments that suit you or you will find that you are making constant concessions to fit in with what has become consistent service to her. Sorry I know it sounds hard and offering emergency help sounds nice but it doesn't work.

Holidayshopping Tue 29-Jan-19 10:48:25

Has the OP disappeared?

Aworldofmyown Tue 29-Jan-19 10:39:26

I have come across many cf parents at school, honestly some of them are 😮
If you like her you just need to be blunt with her, she sounds like one of those people who will constantly push it!!
Tell her, I will do it in an absolute emergency but it's becoming too regular.

TriciaH87 Tue 29-Jan-19 10:28:58

Stop pussy footing about and just tell her straight you don't mind helping out when shes in a real jam but you have your own child to look after. If she is not able to pick him up until later she should look at after school club. Or the nanny can......wait for it......walk and pick the kid up on foot. My kids walk 45 minutes home the days my partner has our car for work. It makes it almost a 2 hour round trip time they come out for me but i do it because i am mum. The nanny is being paid to look after the child you are not so be straight. She can either stop asking, pay you or pay for your costs if your willing to do so. Failing that she can pick her own kid up or find a job that allows her to do so.

Highfever Tue 29-Jan-19 09:48:55

Teateaandmoretea yes I agree in person I use that phrase now. Via text first thing in morning if necessary I'd be just send No.

Teateaandmoretea Tue 29-Jan-19 09:24:11

I dunno highfever I'm not someone who CFs take advantage of. Prevention is better than cure imo. The last person who tried any cheeky fuckery with me I just laughed and pretended I thought she was joking. I still think 'I'm sorry but that doesn't work for us' is a lot better and is a proper sentence. Standing there saying 'no' you'd look a bit nuts I think.

JessieMcJessie Tue 29-Jan-19 09:22:24

She’s not working from home though happyshopping.

BertrandRussell Tue 29-Jan-19 09:16:19

If it’s not inconvenient, why wouldn’t you do it?

BruceAndNosh Tue 29-Jan-19 09:06:37

Why do so many MNers have MUG tattooed on their forehead?

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