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To go out or stay home?

(9 Posts)
lizzywig Wed 09-Jan-13 21:06:24

DH and I have won a competition, it's a nights stay in a lovely hotel (this Saturday). It starts with canapes, then three course dinner and drinks, disco with drinks, followed by one nights stay in the hotel and buffet breakfast the next day - everything is free. We never win anything and although we're not penny pinching we don't ever splurge (or even do anything basic like go to the cinema) because we always seem to be saving for the next big bill. This is a real treat for us and we could do with letting our hair down, it's been a long time and we need some us time!!

DD is 14mo and we have never left her with anyone overnight, she has slept through (on and off) since she was 9wo so no concerns of the person looking after her struggling, although she is about to cut another two molars. I have got some "anxiety" about leaving her for the first time but no more than any other mum I don't think.

DH asked his sister to babysit/stay the night and she was thrilled to be asked. She's 22, trained to look after children and our DD loves her to bits. DH would like to get a lift there and back so he can have a few drinks (I don't drive) and while this is reasonable I can't help but feel anxious about not being able to quickly get home should "something" happen. SIL can't drive, so we would be cut off and our house is in the middle of nowhere so SIL would be cut off too.

Whilst I love and trust SIL, she has never looked after any baby overnight and to some extent I wonder if it helps to have done so in case you do have to deal with a baby who cries for 3 hours straight...which DD has been known to do occasionally and only settling for me. SIL also has mental health issues and has been through A LOT, I don't want to go into details on here about all of it but I feel shaky about giving her too much responsibility. She has overdosed twice in the last 5 months and she also drinks heavily but has cut down in the last month. She has a shady boyfriend who SIL knows we don't want near DD (he raped SIL).

I know she wouldn't drink around DD but she does suddenly get very down and I don't want to put too much pressure on her. I also think that if I were to go on this night out I may not enjoy myself because I'd be too worried. SIL has looked after DD all day before on several occasions when she's been poorly and stayed off nursery and she's been fantastic at why am I worried about overnight??! She goes through months of being fine and then crashes down to earth and it's hit or miss as to when it happens.

I feel like I have answered my own question and I shouldn't even consider going but I wonder if I'm blowing it all out of proportion, after all she is DD's aunt and SIL is great with her. It's very difficult to know someone and explain their personality to an online forum, I could never explain just how wonderful she is and how much I love her but I do love my DD more. WWYD??

MerylStrop Wed 09-Jan-13 21:09:08

Is there anyone else around - your parents, siblings, inlaws, or even friends, who can be "on call"? Are you close enough to get a taxi back in a genuine emergency?

lizzywig Wed 09-Jan-13 21:22:31

I did think about that, my parents are close by but are unwell, in fact I'm worried about my mums health and I don't really want to involve them. My mum made a point of apologising for not being able to help and genuinely feels bad about it, although I told her not to. Incidentally I did open up to her about all of this and her first response was "I didn't like to say anything but I'm glad you're talking to me about this", so that's made me think perhaps I'm not way off the mark.

DH has quite a bit of extended family close by but SIL would be offended I think, she already feels like people don't think she's capable. I know she's capable of looking after DD, it's just if it gets too much for her or if something genuinely bad happens. I know the latter won't, but that's like saying "I won't bother writing a will because I don't think I'll die until I'm 80". I'm the type of person that needs a contingency. The only friends who would be suitable are busy, the rest are too far away/have young DC themselves.

I can tell DH is disappointed and I'm trying to talk myself into going because he REALLY wants to go and it being his sister he isn't as worried as I am, he's seen her have issues all her life and knows she's a good person, but then I keep coming back to my worries...

MerylStrop Wed 09-Jan-13 21:28:01

She doesn't need to know does she?

And perhaps you could couch it in terms of an evening, overnight and morning is a long time for one person, so you're arranging back up for the morning

...or perhaps someone else in the family is JUST DESPERATE to take DD out to something in particular in the morning....

FWIW if I was doing an overnighter and leaving my kids with a babysitter - my mum or childless friends - I'd definitely arrange for someone else local to be available to them. It's only sensible. It's not a comment on their capability.

It sounds to me like you need to try to get away, like it would do you both a lot of good.

Gillyweed001 Thu 10-Jan-13 02:47:59

Could sil stay with you from the Friday night, so she can see you doing the bed time routine, etc?

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Thu 10-Jan-13 03:34:35

I don't know if it's financially feasible, but could you guys possibly book a second, small, room in the hotel for your SIL and bring her and the baby with? So she'd sleep in that room and the baby in a cot in yours, if that's not clear. Then you and DH can go out to the lovely dinner and drinks and things, and still enjoy your holiday, but they're close by?

lubeybooby Thu 10-Jan-13 03:51:32

You are fretting way too much and being a bit pfb. It's one night!

Go, relax, enjoy - it will be fine. She's 22 and trained to look after children. Not a daft 12 yr old.

Blondeshavemorefun Thu 10-Jan-13 04:09:58

I understand your concerns

You have never left dd alone at night - this will be hard for you anyway

But also you will be worrying about your sil looking after her

Tbh I would be wary of giving someone 24hr total control if they couldn't drive though if the worst came to the worst then they could call a taxi or ambulance

2nd I would be wary of leaving dd with someone who drinks a lot - esp as they can't drive they may think what the hell and have a few glasses of wine etc

And in all honesty I would question someone's mental state of staying with a boyfriend who has raped her sad (poor lady)

I'm a nanny and do lots of overnight work and maternity work - hence awake at silly o clock now but I'm 39

Sil is 22 and never done a night looking after dd alone and dd has never had a night away from you - so if she wakes up in pain and you are not there she may create - do you have faith in sil to sort dd out?

I know I'm not helping relax you (sorry)

When is the weekend - could sil have a trial night at yours while you are there - maybe say she has been waking coz of teeth and you are tired and want some sleep

The probability of dd sleeping through and sil coping fine are high but maybe have a friend on standby - yes they have children but hopefully they have partners with them so can come to you in an Emergency if need be

And again in the am if you have another relative who can just pop over that would hopefully help you relax more

Other extreme case is that sil doesn't do it and you hire in a temp emergency nanny (happens a lot) but that defeats the free weekend away as would be paying for childcare

LibraryMum8 Fri 11-Jan-13 23:59:08

I got to the part "overdosed" and I'll be honest with you...there is no way I'd leave a child with her. The driving thing would Really bother me too. I'd say find someone else reliable and make sure dh doesn't drink so he can drive in an emergency and have him promise you. I would never go otherwise.

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