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Awkward one,...

(28 Posts)
ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 16:42:03

My friend's little girl (4) is in the same reception class as my little girl (4 too). On Wednesdays, my friend asked if i could pick up her little girl from school, and take her to ballet with my DD. I said it's no problem, since i will be doing the miles anyway, and my friend is at work full time.

Ballet finishes at 5:30pm. So i was under the impression that my friend's mum would pick her grandaughter after that.

But then it got to "would you mind giving her her tea?", well..ok, i don't mind...

FInally, today she said "oh well, i just might as well bring her pjs, so you can put her in pjs for me for when i get back from work". So i said "what time will that be?" she said "about 8pm".

So from taking her DD to ballet after school, i am now minding her till bedtime.

I don't mind, although not keen with the way it's all been done.

My friend said today "if you need some money to take her out, let me know". I was taken aback a little, and didn't know what to say, or how much to ask. I am not going to take her out every week, but should i still ask for a bit of money for her food and stuff, and if so, how much?

ALso, is there any legal thing i could do to prevent her suing my arse off in case something happens to her DD while in my care? (God forbids).

Finally, the 2 other days my friend goes to work, her DD goes to after school club, and must be picked up at 6pm. My friend said she would manage that by going to work earlier, and leaving earlier. Am i a bit ott to expect she could do that on a Wednesday too, and pick her up from mine a bit earlier?

Thank you for any advice, i am new to any of this, therefore appreciate any help.

nbee84 Thu 04-Sep-08 16:48:11

I would back out of this agreement ASAP.

If she's doing all this before you've even started, what will she be like in the future!!!

Surely an 8pm pickup will affect your dd's bedtime routine etc. Also, when they first go to school you will probably find they are ready for bed long before 8.

IMO she is just using you as free childcare.

Kewcumber Thu 04-Sep-08 16:50:34

picking her up at 8pm is way wya wya out of order. At a push I could see asking a friend to mind until say 6.30 latest and even then I would pay them and have clear understanding of what we both expected.

llynnnn Thu 04-Sep-08 16:54:20

seems very cheeky!! the next thing you know you will be picking her up from after school club the other two days!

i would try to back out of it by saying your dd has to be in bed before 8pm or that sometimes you have other things to do after ballet so cant be relied on for every week, that way she will have to have another arrangement in place

agree it is an awkward one tho!

ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 16:59:28

That's just it Kew, she hasn't said exactly what she wanted, and I have been left a bit confused..little by little, i got sort of "trapped" into giving her tea and preparing her for bed.

Like i said, i really don't mind taking her DD to ballet, my DD goes too. Ballet finishing at 5:30pm, it wouldn't put me out at all.

The problem is, we are really good friends, she is going through a horrendous split at the moment, so I am glad i can help her out, ....

Right, am waffling, am off to ring her up to tell her i need her to pick up her DD earlier than 8pm.

Shall i still ask for an allowance for her DD??

lisad123 Thu 04-Sep-08 16:59:29

sorry but way out of order. I have just been to friends, and signed all paperwork for my DD1, as she will have her 1 day a week after school. I will be paying of course, and wouldnt exspect free child care. I would tell her you cant do it regular as you have a possible paying job

ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 17:14:29

Oh Lisa, that;s a good idea! (and it's true).

I have just texted her something along the lines of "Oh sorry, but forgot to ask what sort of time you will be picking XX up? I start the girls' bedtime routine at about 7pm, would that be alright for you?"

She has just replied ok, as long as there is no traffic.

well, that s a start.

Don't mind about giving her DD tea really.

Next, i shall move on to the "allowance" thing...

Arrghh i have only myself to blame really!!

Simplyme Thu 04-Sep-08 18:06:42

That is really using the friendship imo!! I have had people like that in the past and they just push and push and ask for more and more. TBH I think you need to say that every week you can take her to ballet and on 'occasions' you can have her afterwards by invitation! Tell her you have things to do like shopping etc and can't be responsible. I would not ask for an allowance as then she will feel guilt free and push for more justifying it as paying you!

It is hard but if you want to save your friendship then say something - else you will become resentful and it will destroy what you have

ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 18:17:08

Thanks Simplyme.

I have decided that i will not ask for an allowance, unless we go out somewhere. I have also asked about school holidays, and she doesn't expect me to look after her DD then.

She has agreed to 7pm, which suits me ok, as we have late dinners here anyway, and it will leave my DDs a bit of time to wind down before bed.

I just hope she sticks to it, as she has mentioned bad traffic, paving the way for late pickups methinks!

We'll see how it goes, but although I am willing to help out, i don't want it to infringe on my girls' bedtime routine.

Thanks everyone for your opinions! Much appreciated.

Sidge Thu 04-Sep-08 18:18:55

Stop asking her, and tell her!

Don't ask 'is that alright for you', tell her 'I need you to pick your DD up by 7pm as that's when I put mine to bed'.

I know it sounds a bit harsh when she's a friend and she's having a hard time but IME if you don't nip this in the bud now she'll push it more and more and before you know it you'll be having her overnight and taking her to school.

She's using you as free childcare and going beyond asking you for a favour I think.

LongDroopyBoobyLady Thu 04-Sep-08 18:29:34

I agree with Sidge.

Your friend is abusing your good nature. If it was me I'd be happy to take and drop off from ballet but not to take home to feed and bath after ballet.

AccipeHoc Thu 04-Sep-08 18:42:17

Wow, some people have no shame.

Just say that from now on you are busy after ballet. Don't elaborate. By the sounds of it, she's say "well, couldn't you take my dd with you?".

GordonTheGopher Thu 04-Sep-08 18:45:09

I'd get out of it asap.

And if she gives you any 'reward' i.e. money, chocolates, whatever, it's illegal as you're not registered.

She is taking the piss.

ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 19:30:13

So if i take her DD to eat out, and her mum gives me a Milk Tray to say thanks, you're telling me it's illegal??????

Soooo.....when Mil looks after DD and I give her a bottle of wine to say thanks, I or she could be prosecuted?????????

Is that what you're saying Gordon?

StealthPolarBear Thu 04-Sep-08 19:36:38

I think it's only people you're not related to, but yes, you have to be a registered CM to look after children in your own home for more than a certain length of time and receive payment for it.
You're being used!

ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 19:43:08

Just googled it, the limit is 2 hours a day.

Thanks Gordon for the info, and Mil is off the hook because it doesn't apply to close relatives.

So does that mean that people who regularly use babysitters, like teenage neighbour, and paying them are actually doing this illegally?

I learn new things every day on MN! smile

Simplyme Thu 04-Sep-08 20:10:57

no not babysitters in your home but in their home yes!!

ie child at someones house is illegal but at your home ok!

stepfordwife Thu 04-Sep-08 20:14:25

she's taking the piss

ReginaFalangi Thu 04-Sep-08 20:32:48

Oh i see. Thanks for all the info!

LittleDorrit Thu 04-Sep-08 21:57:01

I know I will get flamed for this, but just have to share my slightly different take on this. I do think that asking you to look after her DD to 8 pm is pushing things a bit too far, BUT if you don't mind helping out, then I don't think there is anything wrong with doing it until, say 7 pm.
RF - you sound like a really lovely friend. I think in today's society many of us are just so caught up in our own lives that we have forgotten that sometimes it's good to help out friends, and that it does not necessarily amount to be taken advantage of. It would be such a HUGE help to me if I had a friend who would look after my DD even for 2 hours a week - but I would never ask, fearing such a reaction, and no one has ever offered.
In terms of it being illegal, I think many people are misinterpreing the law - the laws applying to CMs were never intended to apply to ad hoc arrangements between friends !!!

Kewcumber Thu 04-Sep-08 22:15:33

it isn;t a coupleof hours though its picking up fom shcool (3.30?) until 8pm. I dont have any issue with helping out a friend and neither does OP from the sounds of it but to morph "from could you picking up DD from ballet" to "would you mind feeding her tea and getting her ready for bed" EVERY WEEK. I'm afraid I still think thats taking liberties.

It sounds to me more like having agreed to pick up her friends DD, the friend has just pushed and pushed until its a step too far.

Swampster Thu 04-Sep-08 22:18:43

Is there any reciprocity? What does she do for you? No way would I expect a friend to do anything like this without doing similar in return.

StealthPolarBear Fri 05-Sep-08 09:49:56

LittleDorritt, if she had been upfront from the beginning then maybe but IMO she has pushed the boundaries, and assumed that the OP will do it, not actually asked

AccipeHoc Fri 05-Sep-08 09:58:29

LittleDorrit, If I found it easy to look after my children maybe I would go round offering to look after my friends' children, but it's not easy, it's hard work, especially at the end of the day. And as I don't work, nobody would evr offer to look after my children! ANd I'd say I need the break more!

PinkChick Fri 05-Sep-08 10:06:56

i wouldnt do it, shes pushed you into it, hasnt considered you or your children, vene saying well shell 'try' to get there for 7 but traffic may be bad!, shes totally taking the pee and knows it!..tell her you can take her dd to ballet but she MUST be collected by 5.30 as you have now been told it is ILLEGAL for you to care for someone elses child in your own home for more than 2 hours!

Hate people like this who take a lendsad

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