Would you charge to babysit your grandchildren?
A grandma wrote to “Ask Amy’s” advice column about her unique babysitting proposal. Her daughter asked her to watch her one-year old son twice a week so she could return to work. The grandma said yes with the following condition: The grandma charged her daughter $20 per day and asked her to promise that she would deposit her “fee” directly into the grandchild’s college fund bank account. Her daughter was happy to agree to this.
When her daughter-in-law asked her to watch her 2-month-old son on a specific day because she has to work, the grandma told her, “Yes, but when you’re making money, it isn’t on MY time, so I will charge you.”
Before she could tell her the plan (same as her daughter’s) she sent her an email expressing her disbelief that a Gramma would charge to watch her grandson. She made a point of letting her know that her mom would never charge her to baby-sit.
The grandma didn’t feel she was out of line, because it’s a good lesson in life: Don’t expect people to take on your responsibility. It ‘s different if there is an emergency or if you want to go out with your spouse or if the grandma wanted to take the child for the day (she would never dream of charging a fee for that). But she doesn’t feel it’s her responsibility to baby-sit the grandchildren while their moms are out making a living.
What do you think of this grandma’s creative proposal?
As with all relationships, it takes good communication to negotiate a plan. Some parents would be hard pressed to pay even a small amount and that would have to be taken into consideration. If finances are not an issue and everyone’s in agreement, the grandma’s proposal sounds like a clever idea that could be a win-win for all three generations.