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My 73 year old mother in law childcare part 2 - need the same straight talking please

(80 Posts)
clemette Tue 15-Sep-09 17:47:14

Some of you may remember me posting about my MiL who has my children for one day a week each and who, until a couple of weeks ago was completely diregarding anything I said about food/routines/swimming/parenting in general.
Well DH actually built up the courage to say something and things settled down - to the point where we had a successful holiday all together last week. DH had persuaded me to give it another go (if you remember I was all for increasing their time at nursery).
Anyway, when I collected 4.5 year old DD today she told me that her granny had had a nap after lunch while DD watched TV. DD is a sensible little thing (and a TV addict so she probably wouldn't have moved) but I feel incensed that MiL thinks this is OK (I asked her about it and she just said "I slept while she watched TV").
Is this (yet again) me being unreasonable because of my tense relationship with her (and the fact that I would rather her NOT look after them for so much time) or would you be cross too?

purpleduck Tue 15-Sep-09 17:49:57

was it a proper going to bed to sleep, or a napping-on-the-couch-with-half-an-eye-open?

Is she poorly. Perhaps this is your perfect get out clause..."Well, maybe dd is getting a bit too much.."
grin

Reallytired Tue 15-Sep-09 17:52:29

If you want decent care then you need to pay for it. Mothers/ MILs are a law onto themselves.

I am not surprised that granny needed a nap. She is 73. Its no wonder she hasn't got the energy to cope with a four year old.

Don't have an arguement, just say that your dd is enjoying nursery so much that you have decided to increase the hours. Granparents are great for childcare crisises. Don't fall out with your MIL she can help when you have inset days or other random days off in the future.

purepurple Tue 15-Sep-09 17:52:43

I would be cross.
But, I would expect it from a person of such mature age.
I would not be comfortable at leaving my DC with such an elderly person.
Sorry, don't want to offend, but I would be worried about their ability to cope with energetic children.
You are going to tell me now that she is superfit and runs marathons every weekend now, aren't you grin

Weegle Tue 15-Sep-09 17:55:59

crikey - I frequently have had a nap when DS is 'under my care' and he's only 3. Usually on the sofa whilst he plays nearby, but occaisonally I've gone to bed and left him watching TV with instructions to come and find me if he wants anything (I did feel shocking at the time though).

I don't know any of the back story but on that alone YABU.

geraldinetheluckygoat Tue 15-Sep-09 17:57:13

agree that a 73 year old MIGHT struggle to cope with a four year old. I struggle with mine and im 33,,,grin

MmeLindt Tue 15-Sep-09 17:58:26

Hmm, I used to nap on the sofa and let DS watch some TV.

Was she in the same room?

I think that you are going to have to stop the childcare arrangements. It is not a help to you, it is making you anxious.

LilianGish Tue 15-Sep-09 17:59:22

What Reallytired said.

colditz Tue 15-Sep-09 18:02:02

I used to nap (and still do ocasionally) on the sofa with my children in my care.

As you say, your 4.5 year old is a sensible little girl, and old enough to know to wake Granny up if she needs to. I'm with your mother in Law, it is ok. She's a relative, not staff.

inchhighprivateeye Tue 15-Sep-09 18:03:30

DS once told me that Granny had fallen asleep when they were watching TV. She hadn't mentioned it, so I was a bit miffed. But no harm was done, so that's the main thing. It's not as if she left a baby alone, but it does sound like you need to delicately renegotiate your arrangements.

Ripeberry Tue 15-Sep-09 18:06:21

You are getting free childcare. If you want someone to 'engage your child and follow your routines' then you need to pay someone younger.
Let the poor lady have her nap. When you get to your 70's you are in your second childhood and need your naps grin

rubyslippers Tue 15-Sep-09 18:08:04

if i was 73 and looking after a 4.5 year old i would need a nap

i think that you need to make other arrangements as this one is clearly not working out

Sparkletastic Tue 15-Sep-09 18:10:32

Lawks I often fall asleep whilst the DDs are watching telly (in the same room of course) and I'm 37! You really need to stop all this - I expect you are just waiting for the next 'issue'. I'm not unsympathetic (as I said on your last thread) and have been there with my MIL and her obsessive reading of Daily Mail and watching of Sky News whilst supposedly entertaining DD1. As soon as I caught on I upped DD1's days at nursery and never looked back. Shit or get off the pot - and I mean that supportively grin

bigchris Tue 15-Sep-09 18:10:37

agree with everyone else
nothing wring with having a nap
when i had a newborn ds watched tv while me and baby napped
a 73 yr old often needs a nap in the day - she probaby naps every time but today is the first time you have found out tbh
if you are unhappy just increase the hours at nursery

BonsoirAnna Tue 15-Sep-09 18:12:02

clemette - I think you are being unreasonable. My mother often nods off when DD (4.10) is watching a DVD and that is fine by me.

franklymydear Tue 15-Sep-09 18:12:04

don't see a problem in napping with a 4.5 year old in front of the TV. Think you're over-reacting

PrincessToadstool Tue 15-Sep-09 18:12:50

Hmmm, dunno. I agree with the other posts really - you should consider using a nursery/childminder.

If you want free childcare then I think you have to accept that it won't be to your exact spec, and nor should it be.

TurkeyLurkey Tue 15-Sep-09 18:15:55

God who can't nod off whislt watching Cbeebies?

Silver1 Tue 15-Sep-09 18:20:00

What ReallyTired said- but also it doesn't sound like you are discussing it with your DH. Childcare is down to both of you to sort out to make sure that your daughter is safe and well looked after. If you discussed it with him before letting us make your mind up no wonder he's inclined not to change, it's probably the only way he feels he can have a say.
YABU (a little bit ) to complain..

Silver1 Tue 15-Sep-09 18:20:01

What ReallyTired said- but also it doesn't sound like you are discussing it with your DH. Childcare is down to both of you to sort out to make sure that your daughter is safe and well looked after. If you discussed it with him before letting us make your mind up no wonder he's inclined not to change, it's probably the only way he feels he can have a say.
YABU (a little bit ) to complain..

Silver1 Tue 15-Sep-09 18:20:02

What ReallyTired said- but also it doesn't sound like you are discussing it with your DH. Childcare is down to both of you to sort out to make sure that your daughter is safe and well looked after. If you discussed it with him before letting us make your mind up no wonder he's inclined not to change, it's probably the only way he feels he can have a say.
YABU (a little bit ) to complain..

sabire Tue 15-Sep-09 18:34:54

My mum is 75, my dad is 80, and they regularly have my 4 year old overnight. Both my parents snooze in their armchairs after lunch while ds watches cbeebies or plays in the conservatory. I don't see this as any sort of problem.

Actually I lay down and had a snooze on the sofa today while ds was on the computer. Very nice it was too. smile

Want to add, my parents also often look after my neice and nephew (18 months and 4) and on the odd occasion have had all the children at once (18 months, 4, 4, 5, 10)!

My mum is a total dynamo, despite her dodgy knee. My dad tends to take a back seat and let it all wash over him, but he's on the ball enough to take the children out for a walk, or supervise them while they play in the garden.

3littlefrogs Tue 15-Sep-09 18:38:44

Why are you expecting a 73 year old to look after a 4 year old???????

I am over 50, and I would find it tiring TBH.

crokky Tue 15-Sep-09 18:42:01

I think it is OK to need to sleep occasionally. I have slept whilst toddler is on me watching cbeebies and smaller child in playpen when I have been absolutely desperate. However, I don't think it is OK to do it regularly or plan to do it. If she needs a sleep every lunchtime (which is fine, she is 73!), then I don't think it is appropriate to look after young children.

Children get up to all sorts!!! Seriously - what if your DD spilt something on herself and decided to give herself an unsupervised bath to get it off? I don't exactly know what a 4.5yo is like as mine are 3.6 and 1.6, but still I think it probably is the same principle.

crokky Tue 15-Sep-09 18:43:20

Have I missed something? Don't you go to the september after you are 4?

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