Having family nearby can be a blessing for parents, and if it includes offers to babysit, that’s even better. But one mom on Reddit might have put too much stock in that belief with expectations for her parents to provide childcare.
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“Raising two children at a young age has been really difficult,” she wrote of her 4-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter, “however, I was able to graduate from college with a good degree and start a career that I am happy with. Despite this, the struggle of trying to juggle the responsibility of looking after my kids and focusing on my career is stressful to say the very least.” Her fiancé also works full time, she explained, which underscores their need for help. Fortunately, her retired parents have been babysitting her children on Saturday nights so the couple can enjoy alone time.
The OP was recently offered a promotion at work which requires longer hours so she asked her parents to provide help on two extra nights. “However, they refused, saying that they’re doing ‘more than enough’ by looking after my kids on a Saturday night,” she wrote. “We had an argument after this, where my parents threatened to stop watching my kids on Saturday night. This annoyed me, and I responded by saying that if they’re going to put me in a compromising position, then they’re not going to come to my wedding.”
Well, that escalated quickly!
“We haven’t spoken since, and I’ve had to look after my kids on Saturday night, which has been stressful for both me and my fiancé,” added the OP. “I feel as though that since they’re retired, there’s nothing wrong with asking them to pull their weight more and help me out with my kids. Am I missing something?”
Reddit doesn’t think so. The post has racked up almost 2,500 comments, and the majority of them fall firmly on the side of the grandparents.
“More to this, she said ‘pull their weight?’ What weight? Their weight was YOU (OP) and they’ve done their job. You chose to have two children at a young age. You chose to work a stressful career. Your parents have completed raising their child,” wrote one Redditor commenter. “It’s crazy when people expect their parents to continue raising children when they’ve already finished their job! YTA, I wouldn’t come to your wedding or babysit your kids anymore.”
“[Y]our parents are not your nanny,” added another user. “You’re asking for a FAVOR and then getting salty when they say no. It’s not their job to raise your kids, if they want to HELP that’s awesome but you’re acting as if this is their duty. It isn’t. Accept what help they’re giving you or get a nanny.”
“They were already giving you every Saturday,” another objected. “The second they said no you should have accepted and moved on without being hostile. They may be retired but small kids are a lot of work. To disinvite them to your wedding is the height of entitlement. Enjoy watching your own kids on Saturday when your parents relax.”
We’re inclined to agree. While having family nearby to help out is nice, it’s certainly not a requirement. We hope the family is able to work out their differences so the grandparents can attend the wedding — that is, even they want to.
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