Post # 1
Ok Bees, I need help.
my cousin recently moved back to the area with her 1 year old and her and her husband both work retail so obviously need help watching the baby. I am all for helping out during the week which is usually only once a week that i will pick him up and bathe him, feed him and put him to bed and wait until someone gets home around 9:45pm.
she also asks alot during the weekend but I usually have an excuse. Weekends are the only time i get to see my SO as he lives about an hour and a half away so he stays friday – monday morning. She knows this but just says “why don’t you bring him” My SO is fine with kids but I cant blame him if he doesn’t want to spend his day off babysitting ESPECIALLY when saying they don’t like eachother is probably a bit of an understatement.
She lives about 45 mins away and this sunday is asking me to watch him for 6 hours. I agreed because I felt bad saying no so many weekends in a row its been 4 or 5 weeks since I last watched him on a Sunday. I was thinking i could take him to this parade we were planning to go to but then she said she would need me until 8:30pm but could maybe ask a friend to come do a few hours. I asked SO if he would come with me until 6, he said “its cool, you can go. I will just go home sunday afternoon” This makes me sad because I don’t want to take away any time from him but I also feel like a bad cousin.
He just thinks they take advantage of me (not just this situation) and whenever I say I have to watch him he asks me why did they just buy a flat screen TV, or a Guess watch instead of paying for a baby sitter. I dont know how to respond to that. and no, I do not get any payment or gas money nor would I ask.
I know SO sounds very cynical in this post, but he just really cant stand my cousin and her husband and certain things that they do. She also guilt tripped me a few weeks ago , granted she was drunk, but basically called me a shitty cousin because i never go out with her on the weekends when she asks and I act like im married and stay home to be with him all the time. Which isn’t true we go out alot…just not with her. And i also have grown out of spending all my money drinking at a bar phase.
Anyway, so I feel torn between them. I feel like I should help out, but I also don’t want to take away time from seeing him. What would you do? This weekend is especially hard because I have a girls night friday then I am also ditching him sunday now 🙁
Post # 3
She’s asking too much of you, just say no. My cousins pay me to babysit, I refuse but they always find a way to give me money or send gift cards, etc. Babysitting for a few hours one day a week, not bad but I would not do it for free on the weekends. If they are spending more on unnessary things tell them to hire a babysitter because it’s not your kid or responsibility.
Post # 4
She is your cousin, but you are NOT her personal baby sitter.
I think it’s good that you want to help and all that and it’s wonderful that you are helping her out during the week so late (you are better than me lol); but that is NOT your job!!
Your SO stays far away and damn right he gets priority. Sorry. I honestly don’t want to get flamed or say the wrong thing here-but if your cousin had an issue with child care maybe she should have thought about this BEFORE having kids and she can get a different job that is not in retail lol. Perhaps you can help her get a different job by suggesting the local temp force?
Post # 5
- Wedding: April 2013 - A court...
I side with your SO. Not saying your cousin HAS to pay you (maybe you like spending time with the baby?) but she seems to rely on you a lot, its not your responsibility . Also for them to splurge on material items and still expect free babysitting or else you’re a shitty cousin ? You’re too nice.
Post # 6
- Wedding: February 2017 - Seattle, WA
@leisha606: Your SO is right! She’s completely taking advantage of the fact that you watch her son for free. I would NEVER feel comfortable asking so much of a friend or family member, and so often, espeically when it sounds like that are financially able to hire a babysitter. I think you need to put your foot down, honestly. Good luck with this situation!
Post # 7
Wait, let me get this right: you are providing free babysitting once a week (until 9.45pm), and sometimes all day Sunday as well? If so I agree with your SO. You’re not a “bad cousin” if you don’t provide her with free child care. Looking after the child is her responsibility not yours. It’s nice of you to help – but she needs to be giving something in return.
And I can pretty well guarantee that if you have a baby in a few years’ time, she won’t be able to help because she’ll be busy with her school aged child/children.
Post # 8
@leisha606: For me, my partner comes first no matter what. If she needs child care, she can hire someone like everyone else in the world has to do. You can’t always sponge off your family and expect them to jump every time you ask them to. I would say, “I’m sorry. As much as I’d love to help, I only get to see my partner on the weekends. We’d like to spend quality time together alone.”
Don’t make someone else’s problem your problem, especially at the expense of your relationship. Would you rather be a good cousin or a good wife? He is your life partner and who you will be spending the rest of your life with. I’d rather not put a rift in that relationship and focus on developing it and keeping it strong. I’d be pissed if my partner changed plans with me to baby-sit, especially if I didn’t see him often.
Post # 9
Im siding with your SO on this one. Your cousin and her husband need to find a workable solution to Their problem. Its great that maybe once a week you can watch after him but your SO doesnt get to see you all week and he deserves your weekend time. He shouldnt have to deal with you looking after a child when he has waited all week to see you.
Your cousin sounds rather selfish. Your SO is right, if they can afford luxuries then they should be able to find child care instead of guilting you into watching their child. Also she called you shitty and said you never go out with her on the weekends, well who would be watching her child while you were out?
I agree with a PP, she needs to either change jobs or find a sitter that isnt you.
Post # 10
Wow thank you guys! I know you are right. Although I probably should still do sunday since I agreed already to this weekend, right? and the crazy thing is, it is not just me. i really don’t know if they pay anyone (maybe they do?) but two other cousins watch him sometimes and then a few of her coworkers and friends. I feel like she will be like “all these people help me out, but you cant find time to and we are supposed to be really close” kind of thing. SO says that is one of my faults I am always trying to please everyone. I just hate knowing someone is going to be mad or dissapointed at me.
Post # 11
@leisha606: Sounds like she is taking advantage of everyone. I realize that people have to work but just because she has to work doesnt mean she gets free child care from anyone and everyone. Sounds like she has a workable schedule with everyone pitching in, and thats bunk.
I was a single mom for a while and I had to pay child care as most people do. I would be steering her toward a job that doesnt overlap with her husbands or advise her of local child care people who have good rates.
Post # 12
She is pulling on your heart strings (with the baby) and your good & GENEROUS Nature… to the point of using you
Think about it… while you are babysitting, she is working
She is making money… you are babysitting / working for her, and making zip-zero-zilch
She is therefore taking advantage of you
I get that you feel bad for the baby… but your Cousin needs to be paying you something… or finding someone else to babysit
And ya, NOTHING comes between me and my time with Mr TTR without my first talking it thru with him (not after the fact that an agreement has been made)
I very naturally tell people when they ask of my time when normally Mr TTR & I are usually together… “Sorry, but I will have to get back to you. Need to see if Mr TTR has anything planned that I may not be aware of”
Clearly a way of stating OUR RELATIONSHIP comes first above all else.
Hope this helps,
Post # 13
@leisha606: I think it might be more fair to you if she was bringing him to you instead of you always going to her.
Post # 14
@This Time Round:
YOU ARE BOTH RIGHT! I have realized she makes me feel guilty for putting him first (another thing she brought up in her drunken rant) because we are supposed to be BFF etc etc. BUT i shouldn’t feel guilty for putting him first. I think she just doesn’t understand because her and her husband have a…weird relationship. Not very lovey-dovey, not that every good relationship has to be lovey dovey, but i don’t know how to describe it. So i think its hard for her to understand. I never should have agreed without asking him first, i did just assume we could bring him with us (before i found out the times I had to watch him). I have two options for this weekend
1. explain to SO i am sorry and after this weekend I will not watch him during our times anymore. And bite the bullet for not seeing him much this weekend..
2. Tell her I am sorry even though i agreed to watch him I am going to back out. Which sounds horrible!! I would honestly be more likely to make up an excuse (which im sure she would see right through since i always have an excuse for when she normally asks) I have no backbone! lol
third option for this weekend anyone? But from now on I think I will tell her no Sundays instead of always making an excuse.
Post # 15
@leisha606: I feel you owe it to your partner to go with option 2. Tell her you’re sorry but you are putting your relationship first. If you don’t, who will? Maybe he will start to make time with you less of a priority too and that would be terrible. Seriously, don’t let a good guy slip away so you can be used and taken advantage of by your family.
Imagine his smile when you tell him that he comes first and you are spending the weekend with him and keeping your plans 🙂