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AIBU to not want to do childcare for my GD?

(50 Posts)
cherry1957 Fri 27-Feb-15 15:39:30

I have the most beautiful little GD who I love deeply but my daughter has asked me to do regular childcare when she goes back to work next month and I don't want to do it. AIBU? My daughter and her other half earn reasonably well but aren't keen on leaving her with strangers. I feel there's some emotional blackmail going on here as they know I care for her so much but I've had decades of childcare and I want a break now and to enjoy retirement with my DH. The other grandmother has offered to do some care so I feel like I'm the 'bad' grandma. And, being almost certainly unreasonable, I feel quite jealous that my GD might end up loving her other grandma more. I'm really conflicted and would appreciate some advice and views please!

Riverwalk Fri 27-Feb-15 15:47:28

I suppose it depends on how many regular hours that you're being asked to do.

My friend does one day a week looking after her GC, and the other gran also does one day, then the children go to nursery the remaining three days.

Also depends on how fit and able you are.

tanith Fri 27-Feb-15 15:54:22

Not at all unreasonable if you don't want to then just explain your reasons . I feel the same I have not offered to do it on a daily/weekly basis as I too value my retirement time to do as I please. I have however always helped out in an emergency or in the holidays when it suits me to spend time with them.. As long as you spend time on your own terms with GC then I can see no problem with them loving the other grannie more..

J52 Fri 27-Feb-15 15:57:37

We do a once a fortnight child care day. The other GPs do more, but not full time.
This allows us to do other things, including short holidays, in between. I would not like to do regular weekly minding. Like you I love my GCs, but I retired to do my things.
If you were still working what would they do then?

We do different things than other GPs, so there, hopefully is no preference Of GPs. x

merlotgran Fri 27-Feb-15 16:08:10

Try and reach a middle ground. I'm sure you want to spend time with your GD but it's the commitment that's putting you off. I don't blame you for wanting to enjoy your retirement so maybe consider halving the amount of time you've been asked to do.

It's easy to be taken for granted if you willingly agree to whatever they ask.

Anya Fri 27-Feb-15 16:19:11

You can't have it both ways.

You either say 'no' (which is quite reasonable) or you say 'yes' to some shared childminding. But it is NOT reasonable to be jealous of the other grandmother if you decline.

whenim64 Fri 27-Feb-15 16:29:56

I do once a fortnight for a full day, a school run once each week and ad hoc babysitting, plus I'm there for emergencies and to take the children out for treats. I would struggle with a long-term commitment for full days and want to enjoy my retirement with friends and having time to myself. My DD's MiL is 10 years younger than me and she childminds three days a week, which suits her as she is paid the equivalent of her other part-time job. They are in safe hands and it suits us all.

I would say choose what you feel you can offer, be there for emergencies and babysitting, but the onus is not on you to be responsible for childcare. You did that when you had your own children, now it's their turn.

granjura Fri 27-Feb-15 16:30:42

We discussed this our our DDs long before the GCs came. We've always said we don't think it is right for GPs to look after GCs full time, or even on a regular basis, as in 2 days a week, etc. We have never been able to travel much, as I was stuck with school hols, and OH could not have them. DDs always said they totally agree, that it is not our job and it is their responsibility. They know we will be there for them at very short notice in an emergency and during holidays, etc. In November DD1 phoned late on Thrus evening to ask fi we could take over duties for 2 weeks from the Monday- and we packed and went- very happily. GCs will come for weeks on end during hols too. We so love those 2 little ones and want to see as much of them as poss, share amazing times, but no, not bring them up.

But agree with Anya, can't say no and at same time resent other GPs for saying yes, I'm afraid.

Leticia Fri 27-Feb-15 16:32:19

YANBU at all. I was a stay at home mother with all mine until they were 5 yrs. I loved it but I don't want a repeat. Baby sitting, helping out in emergencies is fine- but not regular child care - my day is very full now that I am retired. I wouldn't feel guilty as they can afford childcare and whoever does it will not be a stranger as soon as they start.
It is unreasonable to feel jealous- but I can't see why you would need to be anyway.
Anya is right in that you can't have it both ways.

grannyactivist Fri 27-Feb-15 16:37:46

YANBU, but perhaps you could be back-up for when the other granny has appointments or needs a day off and offer to babysit sometimes.

soontobe Fri 27-Feb-15 16:45:53

I read it that she might feel jealous if the gc loved the other grandmother more, rather than be actually jealous of the other grandmother per se?

If one grandmother spends a lot more time with one grandmother rather than the other, could this happen? Does this happen?

Tegan Fri 27-Feb-15 16:52:03

The opposite I think. Grannychildcare can become just that, whereas grannynotchildcare can be regarded as someone the child spends fun time with [ie not the one that is with them when they'd probably much rather be with mum and dad]. In my experience anyway.

Tegan Fri 27-Feb-15 16:54:11

..and looking after the child on a regular basis can [again only my personal opinion] change the dynamics of your relationship with your DD/DS.

jinglbellsfrocks Fri 27-Feb-15 17:06:35

Oh that's so difficult. You don't want the other granny becoming No 1 gran! I don't think that will happen though as she is your daughter's daughter and the genetic thing will be strong. How many days will the other gran doing?

Greenfinch Fri 27-Feb-15 17:24:15

You have a DH so the caring would be shared I presume .Caring is fun and the three of you can do things together. I can't understand your sentence that you want to enjoy retirement with your DH. This is just the way to do it. I think you would regret it for ever if you let this opportunity pass you by. Give it a go at least. There is nothing more precious than grandchildren.

Mishap Fri 27-Feb-15 17:39:29

You have to decide your own priorities; but if you decide not to do it, you must rid yourself of the feeling that the child will love the other grandma more.

I have one of my GC one day a week as part of a programme of care that includes others. It works well - we have a day to devote to her, having done everything else we want to do in the rest of the week and being able to set that day by for her. Might I suggest that this is a good compromise? - it works for us. There is plenty of time for us to do other things for the other 6 days of the week; and she appreciates our undivided attention in a quiet environment for that one day.

We love having her - it is a joy!

cherry1957 Fri 27-Feb-15 17:43:54

Yes, I agree the potential 'jealousy' bit of other grandma is unreasonable, given my reluctance to do childcare but I was just trying to be upfront about my feelings! We are very recently retired so neither I or DH are keen on tying ourselves down. We want to travel a bit so can't commit to a regular slot without ruining our plans. I am somewhat tempted to agree to having her for a couple of years but don't want to say yes and then resent it. I go back and forth like a yoyo! Think DH would agree to it if I said yes but wonder if he'd just get in a mood when the first tantrum set in. He was a great dad but is a bit grumpy and impatient now he's getting older so not sure how he'd cope.

cherry1957 Fri 27-Feb-15 17:46:17

Mishap, I do like the idea of one day a week but do you find this restricts you too much for holidays or trips away etc?

granjura Fri 27-Feb-15 17:46:46

What happens if you want to go away for a holiday, I wonder?

Friends of our do that for their GCs- but whenever they say they want to go away for a holiday, their children make them feel really really guilty, and make such a fuss about organising any alternatives- even when given long notice. One set of friends have bought a Campingvan when they retired- but can never use it- and then have to pay extortionate rates for going away on hols during school hols (+ all the crowds). We plan on going away for 10 weeks next year to visit Australia, Tasmania and both NZ islands- what then?

jinglbellsfrocks Fri 27-Feb-15 17:47:31

I don't think it's unreasonable at all. We all want to be the most loved granny.

I don't think you should do it. You will be bored out of your mind.

Leticia Fri 27-Feb-15 17:48:15

The granny who gets all the childcare is the one that has to get them to eat greens, be the one who has to say 'no', deal with the tantrums etc
I wouldn't commit- especially as she can afford childcare. You wouldn't be able to go off for a couple of nights without forward planning or be free to take up other opportunities.

sarah12345 Fri 27-Feb-15 18:07:41

I dont want to be the best loved granny. I dont look at it as a competition. I loved both my grandmas when i was a little girl. I am glad my granddaughter has two grannies who love her.

jinglbellsfrocks Fri 27-Feb-15 18:12:44

We definitely need a halo emoti on here.


Ana Fri 27-Feb-15 18:22:00

Perhaps we would have been better off with a big lump of cheese! grin

ninathenana Fri 27-Feb-15 18:22:26

I do childcare 3 afternoons a week which includes a school run for the oldest. Plus the occasional evening and any emergencies. Other GP live abroad so cannot share care.
I certainly wouldn't want to do anymore and DD is aware of that. As a single parent she needs to work and doesn't earn enough to pay childcare.
I would rather not do the regular childcare given the choice.
Your not being unreasonable.