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WWYD in relation to this childcare issue

(87 Posts)
yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 00:28:46

Ok so I am in a tricky situation and don't know how to address it with dm. I don't want to sound entitled but I do need an answer and some commitment or not.

Basically my dm said no to any regular childcare for ds now 4 and dd now 1 several years ago when asked when I went back to work part time after ds. We accepted that and organised our own childcare. She does do the occasional day here and there when asked and she's free and does babysit which I appreciate.

However, over the past couple of years dsis has gone back to work full time and my dm is doing lots of free childcare for dsis and Bil. Not every week but very regularly and now their eldest is at school every holiday. Not all holiday as they have bil side of the family who will do it too. I feel like my dm offers to help them and keeps these times free as she knows dsis will need her. She also looks after their youngest as he only does half days at pre school regularly but again not every week. So they basically have free childcare all the time whereas we have to pay for dd and top up for ds so it's a lot. My job is only term time so we don't need childcare in the holidays but it really gets to me how unfair the situation is and how dsis need seems to trump ours.

Anyway, this is the thing I need advice on. We are thinking of putting ds into private school and my df has offered to help us out as he has with my siblings. However the more I think about it the more it's seems like it isn't viable financially for us as the holidays for the private school are different to state school holidays. I d never be at work if I took both off! And paying for ds in holiday club and dd childminder as she doesn't get the free hours yet would make it practically the same as what I earn.

I would like my mum to be fairer in her division of childcare and help us out as she does dsis. How do I approach this without sounding like I am comparing and being grabby. I am nit grabby and accepted it when dm said she wouldn't do regular care for us but find it very upsetting that she practically does it for my dsis. However, it's difficult as we would need a certainty that she would do it whereas with my dsis she seems to offer. Making me look bad when I ask to even things up. Dsis has bils family to ask instead if my dm says no whereas we have no backup.

I was wondering about just saying I ve been thinking about the private schools and don't think it's doable because of this and see what her response is. I would be upset if she doesn't consider matching what she does for dsis but then consider she could end up with three under 6 which wouldn't be fair! What would happen if dsis and I ask fir the same weeks? Dsis has other people willing to help out so could easily get around this and have dm do another week whereas we don't.

WWYD to bring up the subject with dm?

Astro55 Sat 14-Jan-17 00:38:07

The thing is - some people need the help - others seem more capable - I don't know why parents seem to think this is the way to look at it!!

I know MIL has SIL kids ALL the time and never has mine - she might prefer them - she might feel obligated - I feel she's missing out!! Especially as my kids are well aware who's favorite!! (Nanny why haven't we got toys at your house? Nanny why are there more pictures of X and not us? Nanny why isn't the cleanser we made on the wall?)

Their loss!!

Not sure how to equate private school and baby sitting - no real link there

Wtfdoipick Sat 14-Jan-17 00:47:03

I suspect the issue is that you want to formalise things and your dm doesn't. Even though she does more for your dsis it sounds like she does it on an ad hoc basis. It is possible that your mum just doesn't want to be tied to set times.

holidaysaregreat Sat 14-Jan-17 00:52:30

I have had same. Although do live away whereas DB lives locally. Have had to run my life around SIL as they had their kids every weekend, despite them not working over the weekend.
Just say outright you would struggle with the longer hols. So not sure you can manage it. Surely your DM could have cousins together?
It would be a shame to turn down the offer. Some private schools do holiday clubs that take childcare vouchers, so that could be worth looking into?

holidaysaregreat Sat 14-Jan-17 00:54:14

astro I think it's the longer school hols that are the issue, so not babysitting as such

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 00:57:44

Yes I think that was her reason for saying no to us when we first asked but now she does it for dsis. I think it probably us ad hoc but it's every holiday but not all holiday so still a set time. I think dsis is very clever in how she asks and definitely plays the we re struggling card. I haven't seemed to master that. But she chose to go back to work ft and they choose to only put their youngest in for half days. So dm covers this for them. She definitely seems to think she has to help them out and didn't seem to know they don't pay childcare for their youngest because of the free hours. I ve tried to say they could put ds in childcare a whole day and use holiday club but she seems to think she's their only hope. As they have alternatives I guess it seems more ad hoc to dm whereas we would need certainly. I guess that is one problem.

How do I get round this?

I get what your saying about missing out but actually it's us who's missing out as he struggle to pay childcare whilst dsis pays nothing. Plus now we are making decisions about ds and schools it's a bigger issue.

I ve outlined very clearly in my post the connection between private school and childcare from dm.

holidaysaregreat Sat 14-Jan-17 10:12:02

I think it's definitely a case of some claiming to be more in need of help and more broke. My DB claims poverty yet has always earned more than us. Is also apparently more stressed out at work blah blah. Reality is he is selfish and wants to have my parents at his beck and call. Sounds like your sister is playing your parents.

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 12:49:17

So, what shall I do? How can I bring the subject up of her looking after ds in the overlapping weeks?

I was just going to start saying sending him to private school would be difficult because of this and see what she says. Good idea?

But what if she says nothing? Then what? I don't want to sounds grabby and make her feel less likely to do it for us. I will be upset though if she says no and doesn't even it out more

Wtfdoipick Sat 14-Jan-17 13:03:13

Your sister is working with your mum from the sounds of it whereas you need your mum to work round you. Just talk to her about it but if her issue is being tied to set times then you will need to find another option

OneWithTheForce Sat 14-Jan-17 13:09:32

Err what your mum does for your sister has no bearing on your own childcare situation! You do not have an entitlement to the same amount of childcare from your mum as your sister. You cannot seriously be considering saying "you need to do more childcare for me mum"! Are you? Really? Your childcare issues are you own concern, not your mums.

OneWithTheForce Sat 14-Jan-17 13:11:14

Oh I see you aren't even considering saying that but rather you are going to drop hints! Are you an adult?

HelenDenver Sat 14-Jan-17 13:14:31

It sounds like your sister's kids are older - were they already in school when your DM started having them?

HelenDenver Sat 14-Jan-17 13:20:11

Oops, sorry, one of them is in pre school. Missed that.

It does sound like she didn't want to be an "official" carer to a young child (assume DS was 1 or less when you went back) and will now do ad hoc half days for a 3 year old and holiday cover for a 5 year old for a week or two.

Are your DF and DM still together?

Assume you are a state school teacher; surely there is some overlap of holidays. Can you ask if she could do the first week of summer and the extra 3 days at Xmas or whatever and you will get a club for the rest, to enable you to take up your DF's offer.

This would be just for your DS.

Is your dsis using this offer from
Your DF too?

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 17:50:58

Yes dsis is using the offer from df and her ds2 is starting in sept. It's not a problem for them as bil works half days so does both school runs. This is another thing which upsets me as dsis is in a lot better position with practicalities and financially than us yet she is getting all the help.

I agree she doesn't want to commit to set times, that is the problem BUT she more or less does with my sister as she ends up having them for a week or so every holiday and days in between here and there which amounts to the same thing although the dates aren't set in stone which I guess we would need them to be. Dm seems to keep these free especially for dsis but wouldn't for us and fits us in if nothing else on.

To put it in context I am one of 3 and dm has always said how fair she tries to be herself with money she might give us or if she buys gifts for one the other two will have something too- without having asked.

What childcare dm does for dsis does have an effect on us as we might not be able to send ds to private school as practically and financially it wouldn't be viable because of the holidays. Plus, it upsets me and makes me feel one daughter and one set of grandchildren are favoured over another. We are paying lots for childcare while they are getting it free. They must save a fortune.

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 17:55:09

Helen Denver- I want to talk to her about it in a nice way and calmly without me or her getting upset. The subject has come up before and it's upset us both and I ended up looking grabby and the bad guy. Whereas my sister seems to have got this arrangement whilst without any of this happening. It's a point of contention.

So, I want to know how others would bring the subject up and what they would say?

Reality16 Sat 14-Jan-17 17:57:33

Private school but looking for free childcare hmm

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 17:57:33

Double is ad hoc is ok for dsis as she has both sets of bil parents and step parents to ask as back up so they get every holiday covered with no childcare costs. We don't have that option is dm does it ad hoc. We would be stuck. Dm seems to think dsis 'needs' her and would be totally stuck without her, she wouldn't.

HelenDenver Sat 14-Jan-17 17:57:45

I think you need to let go about the unfairness with your sister when your mum hasn't yet said no to the new proposal.

Be clear - "mum, it will be hard for me to use df's offer re private education because of the holiday difference. This is both at the beginning and end of the summer holidays and about 3 days at Xmas.(or whatevrr). If we got holiday club for one of those weeks, could you cover the rest"

No need to hint!

HelenDenver Sat 14-Jan-17 17:58:37

Are your parents together?

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 18:01:55

Yes they are together but my dad is away a lot with work.

I think dm partly does it to fill up her time.

Yes, think you're right. I won't bring up dsis for now and guess will literally have to ask her. Suppose I am just worrying about an argument and her saying no. I know she ll say maybe when I am here which won't lead us nearer to any solution as we need certainty. Then if I pushed her on it I would look like the bad guy. She's coming Monday so will do what you said Helen

yummymummycleo Sat 14-Jan-17 18:05:22

Also worried about how overlaps with dsis would turn out and if she says yes and then dsis asks she can no longer help us out. I think 3 under 6 would be too much for her. Dsis ds are very full on and she's said more than once she doesn't enjoy it lots of the time. It seems like dsis has done a good job of making it seem like they can't do without her.

OneWithTheForce Sat 14-Jan-17 18:06:58

What childcare dm does for dsis does have an effect on us as we might not be able to send ds to private school as practically and financially it wouldn't be viable because of the holidays

No it doesn't! You mother said she wouldn't do childcare for you. She stated her position. What she does for her other daughter is entirely separate. It has no bearing on what she does for you as she already told you she wouldn't do childcare for you. You wouldn't be getting that childcare either way.

You really need to stop viewing your childcare issue as connected to how "easy" your sister gets it. You are coming across as a jealous child. Your sister has arranged her own childcare. Everyone's situation is different. You need to accept that you aren't entitled to everything your sister gets just because you are sisters. That works for children, you are not a child, you are an adult woman who created two children. If you can't send you son to private school then you can't but it isn't yor mother's reaponsibility to make it happen. Millions of people don't have parents for childcare. You need to get over this.

HelenDenver Sat 14-Jan-17 18:09:00

So I think you have to be really clear why "maybe" doesn't work for you. You don't mind which of the weeks she picks (say) but if she picks one, you will plan on that basis.

I'm sure DF wouldn't want his gift to not work for you.

I do think you will need a long term self sufficient back up plan though as, over time, her health or energy may change and there is still 10 years until your DD leaves junior school. Could just be a list of holiday schemes that aren't usually full.

Astro55 Sat 14-Jan-17 18:17:13

I ve outlined very clearly in my post the connection between private school and childcare from dm

There isn't a connection

You are responsible for your child and their education - no one else - either it's doable or it isn't -

If you can't afford the childcare when he's not at school that isn't your mothers responsibility. NATO should it be - you want privately educated child via DF free childcare via DM and hold down a term time job!

Why can't you have DSis kids in the holidays and give your mum a break??

Piglet208 Sat 14-Jan-17 18:27:31

I think the only honourable thing you can do is sit down with dm and df and explain that you are unable to accept his offer to pay for private schooling as you cannot afford the extra childcare it entails due to the holidays not matching up. If no offer is made to help with childcare then you must politely and gratefully decline the offer and accept that you cannot afford your dc to go to private school. Your dm is not obliged to sign up to regular childcare whatever ad hoc arrangement she has with your sister.

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