Grandparents views ... on child care

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-20-2001
Grandparents views ... on child care
21
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 9:07am
Most of you know I'm a family child care provider. Well, I had an incident yesterday. A single mom called to say her grandparents would pick up her 7mo ds because she had to stay at work, her mom was out of the area, and her SO was attending a seminar. Okay ... she said the greatgrandparents would be arriving around 4pm. Well, they arrived just 30 minutes later at 1:30pm. Two infants were sleeping in packnplays set up in my parlor, 2yo and 4yo sisters asleep on their sleeping bags in the playroom, and the 5yo awake doing quiet stuff. This couple must have come immediately after their granddaughter called them ... to "save the baby from the nasty child care provider(Mom has explained her grandparents are dead set against daycare)." I saw them before they saw me ... I couldn't believe that they were looking in my windows ... and my dog was going nuts. They said they were looking for a doorbell. Oh really? I invited them in, explained it was quiet time and the children were all resting ... that went right over their heads, they kept on talking loudly and asking me all kinds of questions. Both babies were now awake, one beginning to cry because he usually sleeps for an hour and a half, but he's slept only 1/2 hour. Their greatgrandson is clinging to me and hiding his head in my shoulder. And then while I was changing hid diaper, I hear the woman tell the 5yo she saw a show the night before that said children in daycare never want to go home with their parents and asked the boy if he would rather stay with me than go home with his mom. OMG ... I told her politely that he loved his mommy and that yes he enjoyed playing here with his friends, but he wants to go home at the end of the day, and focused on getting the baby into his car seat to leave. They left. Zoom to 5pm ... 5yo's mom comes in and he hides under the prek table and tells her he's staying with me.

My question ... Do you know your grandparents/parent's views on child care and if so what are they? Views on woh/sah? My late maternal grandmother always worked, be it midwifery/child care/housekeeping. My late paternal grandmother did not work, and did share her opinion quite often about mothers who did woh/wah ... she thought it terrible for their children that their fathers couldn't fully support them and mom had to work. My paternal grandfather, her dh, was a city bus driver, he could barely support three children, and their youngest was Down Syndrome. My grandparents gave their Down Syndrome dd, when she was 3yo, to my grandfather's two sisters to raise because one sister worked as an executive secretary while the other was home, and the little girl, my aunt, could be nurtured appropriately and taken care of financially. My father grew up "visiting" his sister. My mil and mom both did some child care as sah moms with young children of their own before going to woh as their children got older. Mil and my mom have supported my decision to work.

Linda

 

Linda - wife, mother, grandmum                     &nb

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 9:45am
Yes, I do.

My ILs were very unhappy that I was going to continue to work (but they were smart enough not to tell DH or me, just DH's siblings LOL). Then they met our family care provider and there was instant rapport. They could see how great she was with my older ds, and got to know her because we included her and her husband in occasions like our older ds' birthday parties. They think our nanny is wonderful too. So now that they have a third grandchild, they are not giving my BIL and SIL a hard time at all. For them, it really was a generational thing. But I give them credit, they changed their minds.

My dad has no opinion on it - doesn't matter to him one way or another. My mother had really mixed feelings about it, but she trusted my judgment.

BTW, shame on those people for waking up the babies!! No greater sin in our house than waking up someone sleeping - and I am not exaggerating!

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Avatar for biancamami
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 10:02am
UGH!!!!! That sounds so awful. What a terrible situation for you to be in.

Both my mother and MIL have used some form of DC at some point in their lives. For my MIL, who worked at a factory , she preferred a daycare setting because she had a bad experience with a babysitter. This was back in the 70's and she managed to get "scholarships" for her 3 sons to a really outstanding daycare. She's was very happy with the experience and says that they learned so much at DC. Especially because she did not know English so my DH and his brothers learned the language at the daycare center and didn't have to enter any special bilingual programs in elementary school.

My mother was upper middle class in her country so she could afford a nanny for each of us when we were young. But my sister attended a preschool at 2 years old for 3 days a week because my mother believed she needed the social interaction. She wanted to put me in too but apparently I protested too loudly that I preferred to stay with my Nana (nanny).

No one in my family would look negatively on either a daycare setting or a Nanny situation. It's TOTALLY normal in my family.


Edited 5/23/2003 10:14:09 AM ET by biancamami

Ana
Avatar for mjdphd
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 10:09am
For my mother, outside help is the norm. In her country, the help was so cheap, her parents pretty much hired a maid or nanny to look after each child. If you had any money at all, you did not do your own housework or childcare. The first thing my mother did in this country when she had a baby was hire a sitter, even when she didn't work. When she did work, we had a housekeeper/babysitter. I never knew any of my grandparents.

As for my inlaws, my MIL never worked. She got married and had kids really young. By her early thirties, she felt trapped and ran out. She has never said anything about my childcare arrangments but I think she understands my working (both of my SIL's also work). Especially since my kids are doing so well.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-31-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 10:50am
I could write a book. My MIL barely finished HS, she spent a lot of time caring for younger siblings when she was at home. Her mother worked, as her father was "disabled." (That being the family euphemism for an alcoholic who couldn't hold down a job or be trusted to care for his own kids, and he had 9.) She married up at age 24, and never intended to look back. She didn't either, until he died and she had to start working again to pay for groceries. By that time, DH was 19, so child care wasn't an issue for her.

She's too passive-aggressive to say anything to me directly, but there are little digs every day. She is very big on the "if you didn't intend to take care of him, why did you have him?" school of thought. She *insisted* on serving as his caretaker when I went back to work, even though it meant that DH and I had to drive an extra 40 miles out of our way in heavy traffic to get him there and pick him up. (To give her credit, she did move closer, 3 months into that nightmare.) However, when he hit 7 months and started crawling, she said she couldn't handle him full-time anymore, so she expected me to resign. She threw the fit of all time when we put him in a center, instead. Then she decided to "volunteer" at the center, which meant that we got to hear sob stories all the time about those "poor little lonely babies."

Now that he is in school, she insists on picking him up after school on Tues. and Thurs., even though we still have to pay aftercare for all 5 days. We have to put up with this garbage because we don't have anyone else available to pinch hit for snow days and such.

Two weeks ago, we asked her to take him all day on a Friday, because the school was closed for a conference, and agreed that he would go to aftercare on Thursday instead, to help make it up to her in terms of time. We ended up scared out of our wits on Thursday, when DH went to pick him up and was told that he wasn't there, and that no one at aftercare knew where he was. She had shown up at school before the end of the day and taken him anyway at the bell, with no notice to anyone about the change in plans. (Since it was a day that she would normally take him home, his teacher let him go, but the teacher wasn't there anymore by the time DH arrived to pick him up.) When DH called her on that, she gave him the standard, "well, I didn't want him to be punished just because his mother couldn't be bothered to take care of him on Friday." That's how we found out that she has been telling DS that aftercare is nasty and that he really shouldn't have to go there. In fact, it is straight playtime for kids his age, and he actually has quite a lovely time playing with his friends in the art room and on the school playground.

We are grateful that she helps out, and we don't want to alienate her, as she is the only grandparent that DS has. However, I'm getting close to losing my temper over this, and I've been avoiding her a lot lately so as to lessen the opportunity for disaster.

BTW, I think in your shoes I would have politely asked the child's grandparents to step outside to wait while you got the baby ready, since they were not willing to keep their voices down in a room full of sleeping children. I also would have pointedly called the child's mother to confirm that they were in fact who they said they were, since they showed up much earlier than expected.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 10:51am
God.. I hate that too.. my FIL has NO volume knob anywhere on his person. We stayed with them for the first few months after ds was born (long story, won't get into it here!) And he has this huge voice and he never stops talking. It's amazing, about 6 months into dating dh, I already had an internal off switch so that I could block out his voice.. haha. Anyways, he also has a rock n roll band etc etc. As a result, ds can now sleep through ANYTHING.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 10:56am
My parents don't have any problem w/ good outside care.My mil believes mom should sah until their dhs get off work and then work shift work.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 11:06am
Kinda hard if you're a professional.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 11:58am
That is beside the point for her.A woman should be the primary caregiver,and she should bring in some cash.She doesn't approve of wohms who use dc,and she doesn't approve of sahms,either.She's tough!
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 11:58am
There are all kinds of professionals, and many professional jobs include shiftwork.

Dj

"Now when I need help, I look in the mirror" ~Kanye West~

Avatar for biancamami
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Fri, 05-23-2003 - 12:02pm
UGH...How do you put up with that?

What arrogance. That sounds like a terrible bind to have to be tied to her if she doesn't think you are a good mother!!!

Ana

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