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Whats your family support network like?

Answered 4 days ago

I'm hoping to return to work next year and in theory, have an amazing support network for the early morning starts before the before school care opens. We have 4 kids, 2 in primary school, 1 in preschool next year (the year BEFORE the first full time year of school), and a baby. I don't expect our family to babysit all day or even do the school runs. But the job would be a 6am start and the daycare doesn't open until 7. So for an hour and a half a day I would require their help. With babysitting and then dropping the kids off to the facility. They're all really supportive with me going back to work and everything, but they act offended when I ask if they can help. Of course I'll pay them for fuel costs and for the time spent with them. But, I just feel so.... icky... about it all. Is it so bad to ask for help? Would your family help you out? Am I asking too much? There's more in the comments.


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ANSWER
4 days ago
My kids are older now. I would love nothing more than for them to ask me out in situations like this - family is everything, it would be my pleasure and a blessing to spend regular time with grandkids :D Good luck!

ANSWER
2 years ago
They have, in the past, gotten stroppy with me because I DIDN'T ask them for help, and hired a babysitter. This was back when we only had 3 and I was on a different shift.
I'm so confused and irked by the whole situation. Everyone has been cheering me on to go back to work and take the opportunity, but then leave me in the lurch when I need their assistance. Urgh.

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REPLY
2 years ago
Goodluck op. It's tough and I get how you're feeling

REPLY
2 years ago
OP YOU ARE CRAZY IF YOU THINK YOUR REQUEST IS REASONABLE.

What world are you living in? You have 4 kids in three seperate places and and hour (at a ridiculous time) with no paid care available .... How about this.... stay home and look after your kids, or find a job which fits around them.

REPLY
2 years ago
They are controlling or were happy to help out after 8am

ANSWER
2 years ago
I think that there is a big difference between family helping out every so often and then expecting them to look after 4 kids 5 mornings a week! It's a big long term commitment and I can totally understand why they might not be keen to take on such a job.

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REPLY
2 years ago
Amen 🙏 sister

ANSWER
2 years ago
Asking people to care for your kids at 6am is pretty rude and ridiculous maybe even selfish. It sounds like the job you have in mind dosnt suit where you are in your life right now.

ANSWER
2 years ago
I think it’s a bit much to ask parents or in-laws to help out so early in the day with 4 children and do drop offs. As a few others have suggested, perhaps look in to an au pair or nanny?

I wouldn’t dream of asking family for the sort of help you are after. Best of luck.

ANSWER
2 years ago
I assume you have a husband since you used MIL and FIL in your answers, what time does he start? My husband has to take our kids to daycare because I start at 6:30 and daycare doesn't open til 6:15... even though he hates having to leave a half hour early. Too bad haha

ANSWER
2 years ago
Find a new day care. Plenty of them open earlier! My family is very supportive but I would never expect to lump my children on them at 5am every day, long term.

ANSWER
2 years ago
They’re not “leaving you in the lurch”. Encouraging someone to pursue what makes them happy is not the same as saying “we’ll do whatever you need to make this happen”. Four kids is a lot to handle, especially for older people, and what you’re asking isn’t just a one off or every now and then if you get stuck. It might even be ok if you knew you would be able to change shifts at some point, but you are asking them to do this job long term.

ANSWER
2 years ago
Is changing daycare an option? Perhaps a family daycare? They often have earlier opening hrs

ANSWER
2 years ago
Have you considered an Au Pair? Will probably cost less than the daycare & before/after school care & a LOT less stressful. My SIL has been using them for years & it's made her life much easier. If you don't want a live in, there are websites you can hire nannies or babysitters to help out.
Just reading some if the comments on trying to get out of the house & to work on time exhausts me, but you shouldn't definitely take the opportunity to work if that's what you want!

ANSWER
2 years ago
I'm assuming you require them to arrive by 5.30am. If so, I think that might be the issue & not the actual caring of the kids.

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REPLY
2 years ago
I would be dropping them off around then yes. But everyone is always up by then anyway. Except occasionally when my FIL sleeps in. But MIL, and my own parents all wake up at 5 or before.
Maybe you're right though.

REPLY
2 years ago
Waking up at 5 and taking your sweet time having a coffee etc is a different thing to waking up at 5 and rushing around to have yourself up, dressed, fed and ready to receive a group of 4 kids including a baby (who might be upset cos mum is going) at 5.30am. Is there anyway you can get your work hours changed? A lot of work for the sake of an hour, maybe if you explain your situation they could be more flexible? Pretty tough on the kids too- going from home, to a relative, then to before school care, then to actual school. Tough for grandparents to have to drop baby off at daycare too, seeing them upset everyday and then making them feel guilty. I think the more obvious solution is a change in work hours, or find a different job that fits with the hours you can get care for.

REPLY
2 years ago
This last point! And also the car seats that they will require too!
Obvious answer Op is get a diff job/ move position in company or negotiate a slightly later start time

ANSWER
2 years ago
Not answering your question but is there no way you or hubby can start a bit later? I know it's not possible, but hubby and I both start at 6, and he managed to negotiate 7am starts just so we could use daycare.

No help from his family at all, haven't seen or heard from them in years. My family are really close but I wouldn't want to ask them to do child minding especially on a long term basis and at such an early hour. I just think it would be too much for them

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REPLY
2 years ago
^this, otherwise you are doing a hell of a lot of juggling for the sake of an hour...

ANSWER
2 years ago
Closest family is my parents 2.5 hours away. They are happy to take the kids for a few days now and then, or come to us to babysit if we have a wedding to go to for example. But we'd have no family support in terms of before/after school every day (kids aren't old enough for school yet).

You are allowed to ask for help, but in turn, they are allowed to say no. Maybe see if each set of parents is ok to do one day a week and hire someone to do the other days.

Do you have a partner? Can they change something to help out one day a week?

ANSWER
2 years ago
My brother and his wife use my mum

ANSWER
2 years ago
So you’re expecting people to wake up (possibly 5 days a week) before 5am so they can be ready to receive your 4 children on their doorstep before 6am? I’d say it’s also highly possible that your kids will be out of sorts and cranky because they’ve been pulled out of bed at 5 am and will likely also need breakfast still. Then they will have to organise drop offs (single handedly, as most vehicles seat 5 people max and you have 4 kids) in a car that is equipped with 4 child seats (that they will have put in and take out all the time, unless they never want to drive around with anyone but your kids) to more than one location, dragging all kids in and out of car. The baby in the mix makes it sound even worse. I think you are asking a lot and should maybe change care facilities, or look for a family daycare mum willing to take you on, or hire someone to come to you. Or negotiate a change in work hours. I wouldn’t want to get up at the crack of fart every bloody morning just to help out family who think it’s ok for me to arrange my life around their convenience just because they gave me fuel money, or even more than once a week. My sister used to dump her two with me, so I had to wake up extra early to make sure I and my two were ready before she dropped her kids off. Then they would always want food because they had woken up and had breakfast early enough to always be hungry again. Then they would make a mess right as we had to leave and I would have to drag all the kids in to daycare, then round the oldest two up, back into the car then off to school. I was bloody exhausted before I even got to work, which was with another group of kids! Not sure you have really thought through what you’re asking.

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REPLY
2 years ago
Whilst there are some differences in what you've written and what I'm asking of them, you've raised some good points. Thanks for your input.

ANSWER
2 years ago
Gah I know exactly what you mean, and to be honest, I'd give them one day and get the rest done by a baby sitter. That way they are feeling helpful but not "used"

ANSWER
2 years ago
Of course it isn’t bad asking for help. Especially when it’s family you’re asking and especially when they offered. It’s odd they act offended when you actually tell them you want to take them up on the offer.

To answer your question, no family network of support here. My family live in another city and my husband’s parents who live very close by are not supportive at all.’