Child Care Provider Question — The Bump
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Child Care Provider Question

My mom watches my 5mo niece three days a week, and my ILs watch my nephew a LOT (like, every chance they get & they throw fits if it's fewer than three days a week). I recently found out that my mom and my MiL have been discussing how they are going to make child care work for us. I'm not planning on going back to work until sometime around Feb. 2015, and at that time DH & I are planning on primarily using either an in-home provider or (more likely) a day care center. While I certainly appreciate gumption, it kind of irks me that they took this upon themselves based on the assumption that we'll follow in my sister's & DH's brother's footsteps and rely on our parents for all of our child care needs, and especially without ever bringing it up to either of us.
So my question is this: How and when do I approach the subject with The Moms? How can I break it to them gently -but for certain- that they are not our first choice for child care? TIA :)

Re: Child Care Provider Question

  • I agree with the PP to just wait until she mentions it again and let her know that you have already found childcare. FWIW my Grandmother watched DS after he was born and it was more of an inconvenience than help. She always had last minute doctor's appointments, which put us in situations where we'd have to scramble to find last minute back up and it just was not working out for us. Putting DS in the in-home daycare that he's at now was the best decision we could've possibly made. Good for you for not going that route!
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    NunyaBennis
  • realmissjessrealmissjess member
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    edited April 2014
    Okay, I would be irked too. That's a valid feeling.

    But I would try to assume positive intent (buzzwords are okay on working moms, right?). Maybe they want to help and it's not about making important decisions for your family for you. Maybe not — you know your family.

    I'd start to talk up daycare and the benefits, without putting them down. I also agree with PP about not bringing up their offer that hasn't been offered yet. If it comes up, tell them thanks but you have other plans. You can use them for holidays or other times when DC is closed, like for weather.

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  • I totally understand your feelings, but frankly I'm jealous. As someone who is paying almost 3k a month for childcare, I'd be over the moon if I had family around to help with that burden. I guess one way to look at it when you feel irked is how things might be if you had absolutely no family support whatsoever. GL!

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  • I can understand if there is a problem, but you haven't said.  I would very seriously consider free child care.  Sure, day care is potentially safe and full of activities for older children, but unless your family is not capable, I would choose fewer germs and fewer costs for a younger baby.  If you think they are a pain to work with or they are incompetent, then you could say, "but you already work so hard with j and k.  We can afford day care so we want to give you a break."  If they resist, you can say, "I really want to try this because... s will be close enough that we can have lunch together?  There are really great educational activities?  We want s to develop social skills?
    NunyaBennis
  • Don't mention it until they bring it up. Then tell them you would be so grateful for their help as back up care for sick days and holidays. DS was in full time daycare as an infant, but my mom watched him about once a week just for fun. It was great for their relationship. Didn't save us any money and was less convenient for us, but still worth it.
    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
    NunyaBennis
  • Are you completely against using them for childcare?  What if you did part time care and let them each babysit one day a week?  Do they really want to babysit or do they feel obligated since they do it for other grandchildren?

    We use family for daycare and it has worked really well, but I know that has not been everyone's experience.
  • First of all, I thought that I was extremely pro-daycare before I had kids. My MIL was a nanny, so my DH was against daycare. While I am still pro-daycare, I am only for it for after 18 months or so. I'm not against it, but I don't feel that there was any benefit to my young babies being at daycare. If I had a choice, I would use (competent) family until socialization was actually a benefit to my kids. I do understand that there are definite drawbacks to family though, but I would keep an open mind.

    If you are completely against them watching your kid on a regular basis, that is fine, but I would phrase it as - we are so fortunate that we have you to be available as backup care. Because you will need backup care, and it is really nice if it doesn't have to be you or your husband.

    DD Nov 2010 ~ DS June 2012
    NunyaBennisKatelobster
  • Of course there's more to the story than what was provided @Virgo17‌
    Thank you for all the responses! I know we are super lucky to have such supportive family, but we do also have some valid concerns with them providing child care, especially on a long term basis. We'll definitely wait and see if The Moms actually bring it up to us, or if they were maybe just speculating... MiL has mentioned adopting and/or kidnapping "their baby" regularly, though, so I do have the feeling child care (perhaps in other terms) will eventually come up. If and when it does, we may entertain the idea of PT GP care & give it a trial run in the earlier months. It might work, who knows. Maybe they're more reliable and healthy than I've seen so far. We'll have DC secured as well, though. We have certainly have concerns about DC too, of course, but believe the consistency and routine will outweigh them. Only time will tell, and we still have a good bit of it left to wait...
    Thanks again for your input!
  • amy052006 said:
    I think you need to unclench -- they are trying to help.  Don't get irked that people are trying to do you a favor, save you money, and want to be around the grandkids.

    Now, I understand if you would prefer another arrangement.  We had great success with part time grandma daycare, but it doesn't work for everyone.  So you just need to be honest.

    But being irked?  IDK -- that is just too much.

    I kind of agree.  My parents watch DD 4 days a week and my MIL one day.  I am pregnant with #2 and my mom is already talking about watching both of them.

    I have to admit I was a little irked and annoyed that she just assumed she would continue watching the kids but then I took a step back and realized "Hey.  She's just trying to help."  I was honest with my mom and I explained to her that I wasn't sure what we were doing yet. I am taking a good amount of time off and by the time I go back to work DD will be 3.5 and the new baby will be 9 months.  I really want DD in a preschool by that age and although I really liked my mom watching DD while she was still young, I'm not sure it would be feasible to do 2 drop offs (baby at my mom's and DD at daycare)

    Also, another thing you have to think about is this is their grandchild.  They are probably super excited.  I would not wait for them to bring it up.  I would just be honest with them and tell them your plans right away.

    I know for many people, grandparents don't work as daycare but I really loved having my mom for the first 2 years for DD.

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    NunyaBennis
  • I totally understand your feelings, but frankly I'm jealous. As someone who is paying almost 3k a month for childcare, I'd be over the moon if I had family around to help with that burden. I guess one way to look at it when you feel irked is how things might be if you had absolutely no family support whatsoever. GL!


    This too!  When my mom first offered to watch DD after I went to work I always told her I would pay her but she refuses to take any money from us.  I know how expensive daycare is and I feel super grateful that I don't have that financial burden.

     

     

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  • If there is a backstory as to why you don't want either of them providing childcare, then I would just proceed with making DC arrangements and tell them when they bring it up. When DS was little, he started in DC and a couple of days a week my dad and his wife would pick him up early and spend time with him. This was a good balance for us at the time. Eventually DC did not work out and we ended up using my parents 2 days/week and a nanny the other three. So that worked out as well.

    Just trying to point out there are options other than all or nothing. They could be great back-up providers as others have mentioned. But at face value is seems something silly to be offended about, as a lot of grandparents are just excited about their grand babies and want to spend time with them.

    For this LO we are paying a nanny because I am not comfortable with my dad watching her on his own, so I get that sometimes family is not ideal, but I not going to remove my dad from the picture entirely because he wants to be involved, which is so important.

    My ILs have not seen DS for a year and have made no efforts to come see the new baby, and that is a really sucky situation too. I would much rather our kids have grandparents who want to be involved in their lives.

     

  • Guys, I'm not at all upset about the opportunity to have both sets of grandparents involved. At all. I feel very lucky that they are excited and supportive, and we're all looking forward to spending more time together! I'm not at all upset about them offering to help watch the baby, either. I welcome the opportunity. I really, really do. We just want the grandparents to be grandparents.
    The only thing that kind of irked me (and not even in a panty-wadded kind of way) was The Moms hashing out a child care schedule for us without ever talking to us about it or seeming to consider that we may have our very own ideas to share. I understand they're excited and, again, am super glad they're involved and supportive, it just put me off ---just a little --- that they're making these plans without discussing it with us first. I'm already in defensive mode with MiL anyway, so I do admit that certainly doesn't help my perception of her intentions.
    I'll just relax, keep waiting, and let things play out as they may over the next nine or ten months... I just wanted to try to clear up this apparent misconception about what part of this situation I side-eyed.
    [Deleted User]
  • I am sooo jealous! i understand what you are saying but they are trying to save you money and worries!! you can't trust any one just like that with your child. But it's w.e is more comfortable for you and your husband. Good luck!

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  • Guys, I'm not at all upset about the opportunity to have both sets of grandparents involved. At all. I feel very lucky that they are excited and supportive, and we're all looking forward to spending more time together! I'm not at all upset about them offering to help watch the baby, either. I welcome the opportunity. I really, really do. We just want the grandparents to be grandparents. The only thing that kind of irked me (and not even in a panty-wadded kind of way) was The Moms hashing out a child care schedule for us without ever talking to us about it or seeming to consider that we may have our very own ideas to share. I understand they're excited and, again, am super glad they're involved and supportive, it just put me off ---just a little --- that they're making these plans without discussing it with us first. I'm already in defensive mode with MiL anyway, so I do admit that certainly doesn't help my perception of her intentions. I'll just relax, keep waiting, and let things play out as they may over the next nine or ten months... I just wanted to try to clear up this apparent misconception about what part of this situation I side-eyed.



    I just want to add that I can totally understand the feeling. My DHs bio mom is so overbearing and pushy. If she were making plans to provide childcare for me and my husband I would be over here having a total meltdown.

    And by the way, I'm sure if she got it into her head that she wanted to provide daily childcare for us, she WOULD be making plans without discussing it with us first. just cause that's how she rolls.

    On the other hand my mother did actually provide us childcare until she became ill. It was absolutely the best thing for us and I'm very sad that she will not be able to do it for my DD. she will probably be helping us on sick days though. So that gives her the opportunity to help, and us the opportunity to receive help, in a way that works for everybody.


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    NunyaBennis
  • My mom watches my daughter, and I know she has already thought through how she will provide childcare for my currently single brother's potential future kids.

    I think it's very, very important to her that she treats my brother and I (and our children) equally. I bet your mom and ILs feel the same way. Maybe they are working on a 'plan' because they don't want to offer to provide care first, then figure out they can't make it work because of scheduling issues. I would give them the benefit of the doubt.
    baby girl  5.12
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