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DD "babysitting" every night

(86 Posts)
HighlightsandHeels Fri 22-Feb-19 10:32:38

Due to going back to work DH can no longer collect DC (14 & 8) from school.

DC are in same school and rather than get a nanny DD1 wants to bring DD2 home after school every day.

I see her point that she feels to old for a nanny but had some concern that it's too much responsibility, especially given comments on another thread re inappropriate caring responsibilities. Is it unreasonable?

userschmoozer Fri 22-Feb-19 10:34:54

Could you pay her something, and give her a trial?

kimlo Fri 22-Feb-19 10:37:16

too much responsibility. Dd1 is going to be doing her gcses soon, and that means an increase in homework. It also means she can't do any after school clubs or meet her friends straight from school.

Is there not an after school club or a childminder you could use for dd2?

Would she even be allowed to pick up dd2? At dd2s school you have to be 16 to pick up.

Witchend Fri 22-Feb-19 10:39:23

As dd1 wants to I'd give it a trial.

erja Fri 22-Feb-19 10:40:41

Another vote for give it a trial. I don't think 14 is too young for that responsibility.

Darkstar4855 Fri 22-Feb-19 10:44:21

YANBU and I think it sounds like a good plan.

From the age of 13-16 I would catch the train back from my school, collect my brother (age 6-9) from the childminder and take him home and look after him until my mum got home an hour or two later. I think it’s good to give kids a bit of responsibility in their teens.

MRex Fri 22-Feb-19 10:45:49

Every day sounds too much. You don't say what time the first adult gets home? Could you pay DD1 to do Monday and Tuesday then have something else e.g. after school club the next 3 days?

TidyDancer Fri 22-Feb-19 10:46:20

I think it sounds fine as long as the school are okay with it and the DCs get on well together. How long will it be for each day?

Seeline Fri 22-Feb-19 10:47:20

I wouldn't have a problem with the ages, but I think it may be a bit much every evening. It means your older child can't participate in after school clubs or activities, or mix with friends after school. I would also be concerned it may impact on her homework. How long will they be on their own each evening?

MRex Fri 22-Feb-19 10:47:38

Whoops, posted too soon.

I think it depends on how long she's looking after DD2. Just an hour or two is fine, if it's 3-4 hours + dinner, homework monitoring etc then I think it should be limited to just a couple of days.

Quartz2208 Fri 22-Feb-19 10:48:19

Is there an ASC for the 8 year old you can put her name down for and trial it until a place comes up and take stock then?

CripsSandwiches Fri 22-Feb-19 10:49:16

I think it's too much - what if she wants to see friends after school or has a meeting or club she wants to attend? I'd get a childminder or nanny fir dd2 and make it clear they are only responsible for dd2 not dd1.

SleepingStandingUp Fri 22-Feb-19 10:49:55

I think if it was a few days a week or for a few weeks only, fine. But every school day for the next....? years?
How much homework does she have? How well behaved is he? Is she expected to get them dinner?

Nanny seems overkill as you only need it after school.

I'm assuming they're at a Middle School? What happens when that changes?

Takethebuscuitandthesink Fri 22-Feb-19 10:53:08

I think it would be great for your dds independence and teaching her responsibility and family loyalty. If you dd didn’t want to then it would be a whole different story. Maybe spend some of the money you would spend on a nanny on upping her pocket money. Either way your dds behaviour should be rewarded and encouraged.

DontCallMeCharlotte Fri 22-Feb-19 10:53:12

Have a look at this thread, it might give you a steer.


PalmTree101 Fri 22-Feb-19 10:53:51

Maybe two or 3 days of DC1 looking after DC2 and 2 or 3 days of DC2 in ASC and DC1 going home alone?

What if DC1 wants to see friends, play in sports matches, go group work after school etc?

daisypond Fri 22-Feb-19 10:58:54

I think it's OK, if DD is happy to.

saxatablesalt Fri 22-Feb-19 10:59:08

I used to look after my three siblings more or less every day after school, it was pretty common where I grew up and I see plenty of older siblings doing the same now. I don't see the issue.

PinkHeart5914 Fri 22-Feb-19 10:59:14

DC imo shouldn’t be used as free childcare, it’s not fair.

However if she wanted to bring the younger one home, I’d allow it but make it her job for pocket money and I wouldn’t expect her to give the child dinner or anything just keep an eye out until your or your dh are home

daisypond Fri 22-Feb-19 11:00:44

Meant to say, how far away is the school? What time will an adult get home?

MadAboutWands Fri 22-Feb-19 11:01:59

I think it depends on how long dd1 will be at home on her own with dd2 amd how much responsibilities you I expect her to have re her dsis.

If the aim is to take dd2 b home, ensure she has a snack and doesn’t kill herself by doing something stupid until one of you is back home whilst expecting dd2 to look after/entertain herself then I wouod day it’s ok.
If you expect dd1 to carry the same sort of duties a nanny wouod (eg check she has learnt her spellings, play with her if she bored, check she isn’t spending too much time on TV, iPad or doesn’t watch unsuitable stuff etc etc), then i think it’s too much.
Which basically means my issue wouodnt be with dd1 but with dd2 and how mature she is and whether can cope being on her own every afternoon until one of you is back home (so what? 1, 2, 3 hours??) because you shouodnt be relying on dd1 to do all thee entertainment etc... only the basic ensuring dd2 is safe.

saxatablesalt Fri 22-Feb-19 11:02:23

DC imo shouldn’t be used as free childcare, it’s not fair.

My mum had four of us, my Dad left, and she had no family support nearby. She worked two jobs to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table and the money she earned just about covered rent, food and utilities. JUST about. I used to look after my brothers and sisters while she was at work. I have no resentment, all of us did very well in school and at university and we are all still very close now.

What, in your opinion, ought she to have done?

In many cultures it's completely normal to have older siblings take some responsibility for younger ones.

MyDcAreMarvel Fri 22-Feb-19 11:04:04

At dd2s school you have to be 16 to pick up.
I imagine that’s rare in most schools it is year 7 to pick up infant age children so age 11. Juniors don’t need to be picked up.

HighlightsandHeels Fri 22-Feb-19 11:06:10

Thanks for thoughts - seems to be majority would be ok which is reassuring.

I'll try and answer a few Qs, see if that makes a difference:

School goes from 3-18 (technically the jnr and she schools are separate but in same site - all the jnr staff would know DC1)

There is an ASC which can be used everyday. No booking required. DD2 is not keen but will do it occasionally. She'd def rather go home with big sis.

They'd be at home somewhere between 1-2 hours before first adult home. Would also need to get public transport home.

I'm loathe to pay her - I've always had a strict rule that chores are part of family life and you don't get paid for contributing to the family. She does get an allowance, however maybe I need to reconsider this?

MotorcycleMayhem Fri 22-Feb-19 11:06:16

I used to do it for my brother with a much closer age gap. Give it a trial of a week and see how it goes?

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