Dear Ms Mostly,
My daughter has a five-year-old, a three-year-old and is expecting another in a few months. I retired a couple of years ago, have a small side hustle and a full social life. I am enjoying my “me” time after working a full-time job and raising my kids.
I don’t mind occasionally babysitting if it works into my schedule, and I consistently offer to take my grandchildren to the park for an outing when it is convenient.
Lately, my daughter is demanding I babysit during the day. She claims daycare is taking too much out of their budget, yet they seem to find money to take a holiday out of the country once a year and pay $9000 for a purebred dog. She holds her inlaws up as examples of helping out. They take the kids one or two days a week.
I flatly refuse. She is very upset and now there are uncomfortable tensions. She says I am being selfish!
Selfish At 60
Selfish At 60,
You do not owe your daughter to babysit and are entitled to live your own life. Childcare is a job. If you are not interested in that position, you need not apply.
For every grandparent providing daycare, there are more who are not. Statistics show about 38% of grandparents provide ongoing childcare. There is no right or wrong way to approach this. Just your way.
Your daughter needs to get a grip. Continue to pleasantly hold your ground, love your daughter and grandchildren unreservedly, and say no.