I read recently that more grandparents are taking over childcare to allow their own children to go out to work. It must be extremely hard for them as many are already caring for their own elderly parents. Wondered how many granny nannies there are out there?
I have found as a childminder that grandparents are taking on one or two days a week childcare, but sadly after a while some of them are finding it too much when the realisation that it is every week, every month and it is quite demanding and a huge commitment, although they really want to help out.
I have had three families ask if I can take on the grandparents days, which is not always easy to do, and childcare ends up being a nightmare for all.
I've had two children leave when grandmas offered to step in to cut costs. Neither stayed the course for whatever reason and both children are now in more expensive nurseries as I obviously had to fill their places. I think a point that parents can overlook to consider fully is that they may not see quite eye to eye with grandma over such issues as routines, diet, potty training or discipline, and whereas you can shop around for a nursery or childminder to fit your parenting style, you are stuck with the parents/in laws you have (plus any disagreements are likely to get more personal).
I agree with Minderjinx. Parenting differences can really cause tension. I can still feel my mum raising an eyebrow when I'm in a different room! I think you make some good points. Grandmas are taking one or two days a week to help with the costs, but I'm not convinced this is becoming a full time job for them. x
We have always had a nanny (my parents live too far away and MIL hasn't offered to look after DS, so we haven't asked), but I see lots and lots of grandparents out with grandchildren on my two days a week at home. Not so often at groups or classes and thinhs, though I'm sure some randparents do take their granchildren to these, but at the park, library or in town and things. I think its great.
I am a childminder and also look after my Grandson. My DD pays me as M is takin up an under 5 place, and it's my job. Granted she pays a lower rate, but that's my choice. She knows he's well looked after, I love spending extra time with him and we have a close bond, but I also love seeing him when he's not my responsibility!
For me this doesn't seem like a new thing. My grandparents looked after me from the age of three when my Mum went back to work - so around the school day in term time and all day in the holidays, until I was a teen and old enough to be at home alone.
It was the same for DH - his mum went back to work when he was about 8 or so (when she got divorced), and his grandparents looked after him and his brother all around school hours and term time the same.
By contrast, DH and I have moved far away from our parents, so though my MiL would love to look after DS regularly, we have to pay for all our childcare.