Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

2 Bumps

Fil day care sucks!

I am a step mom to 3 beautiful children. For the most part thier dad backs me up on parenting. My issue is with his dad. His dad lives with us and provides in home day care for the 2 youngest. They are 3 and 4.while we are at work he watches adult TV programs like judge Judy and Jerry springer and makes them sit on the couch hands folded. They are not allowed to move or talk. My DF agrees that this is not good, but we can't afford child care. Thier bio- mom offers no financial support. We are working on that. I have tried to improve the situation . I have put together a play area for them in the living room in view of the recliner FIL uses. I still don't think they are allowed to play. When I get home the kids are usually locked in thier rooms. When I ask why he says that wouldn't sit on the couch. By his chair there are multiple toys that have been confiscated. When I ask why, he gets visibly upset with me. His responses are lame and his body language tells me he is lying. He says things like.. They threw it or hit each other with it. We have asked him repeatedly not to put them in thier rooms as punishment and I even bought him a timer for time out in the corner. My DF and I agree that time out is standing in a corner. I minute for each year of the child. I don't know what else to do. My DF agrees with me and has told his dad not yo do these things, but to no avail. I have tried to find out of house programs for the kids. We either don't qualify or can't afford it. Ie. Head start program turned us down. Any suggestions would be helpful. Should I set up a hidden camera to call him on his BS? Won't that cause more problems since he lives with us? I love his dad but you can't treat kids this way! I try to make up for it when I get home. We play together and go outside. The TV goes off when I get home! Is there a diplomatic solution I haven't thought of? Please help?!


Asked by Ms.Gwen at 11:35 AM on May. 18, 2011 in General Parenting

Level 18 (4,795 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (20)
  • Maybe your friend with the daycare is the best option, it sounds like getting your DF on board is the issue. Why not talk to him about it again and see if he will at least try it. It might actually be better for both the kids and his father. An elderly and ill old man might not be up to the task of two healthy and active boys being in his care for the day. If he won't agree then I might try the nanny cam and it will either show you and DF that things really do need to change, or that things aren't as bad as you thought and it's just a few minor issues a day. By the way, I think it's great that you are a caring enough step mom to be seeking solutions for this problem and to be advocating for your step children.

    Answer by MaryMW at 3:54 PM on May. 18, 2011

  • You really need to find someone else to take care of those kids. Get his dad out of your home. Maybe you could work opposite shifts from your DF so that one of you is always with the kids. Maybe you could trade babysitting with a friend for something you do well, or find one who won't charge you was much as a daycare to take care of your little ones. I'm sorry your little ones are having to go through this. Good luck (c:

    Answer by scout_mom at 11:40 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • Well if you kick him out, surely the extra food and utilities could pay for a at home daycare? You are describing abuse, and pehaps you need to downsixe something, buy an older car, or something to get your kids away from him,, I wouldn't let him watch them one more day,, locked in their rooms???? Ms. Gwen you always give such good answers, you know what you need to do!

    Answer by kimigogo at 11:43 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • Your household may qualify for daycare assistance for the kids. As long as you are working on getting financial support from their mother they can't deny you on that basis.

    Answer by other_mother at 11:43 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • Take the tv away completely so FIL can't watch it all day? I don't know what else to say. If it was a sitter you would fire them, since it's your FIL I don't know what else you can do except try to find other childcare. What would you do if FIL moved out or got sick tomorrow, who would watch the kids? You can't make him change. Maybe tell the FIL he either has to move out if he can't provide adequate childcare, or tell him he has to pay rent to stay and you can use that money to pay a real sitter or daycare. It's very sad that he is treating his grandchildren this way and were I their parent I would be doing everything in my power to find someone else to watch them. Kids shouldn't spend all day on the couch or locked in their room- that's just cruel.

    Answer by MaryMW at 11:44 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • Listen, your DF might need to man up here. No one wants to hurt his father's feelings, but does he think it's ok to hurt the children to spare his father? Doesn't it hurt the children's feelings to be locked in their room half the day? Your DF has a responsibility to his children that trumps his responsibility to his father, and let's be honest it doesn't really sound like the father is trying all that hard to begin with, and I can't see that he would be too sad to not watch the kids anymore since it doesn't seem to be a source of pleasure for him in the least. I'm not trying to be harsh or rude but this doesn't sound like a good situation and it needs to be dealt with, excuses aren't going to solve the problem, and I don't think what is going on is ok from the way you describe it. I hope you can work something out.

    Answer by MaryMW at 11:52 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • a legally blind and partially deaf person is not a caregiver to two little ones. No one wants to put their loved one in a home, but you can't in good conscience leave these children with a disabled FIL. I don't know how old he is, but he is probably too old to "put up" with the rowdyness that little ones get into and that is why he locks them in their room. CPS could possibly get involved for locked doors... seriously, I've seen it happen and I know you don't want that.
    A college student may be a good bet, even for just half the day and they are always looking for part time jobs.

    Answer by hollydaze1974 at 12:00 PM on May. 18, 2011

  • PS-- I just thought of something else, google your school district and look for pre-school programs, I had no idea that many districts offer charter programs for little ones, until DS started kindergarten! I was amazed at how many there were, and they were ALL free!

    Answer by kimigogo at 11:46 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • I have tried all of those things, and will not give up looking. My DF doesn't want to hurt his dads feelings, so it would have to be family watching them. The opposite shifts idea isn't an option cause we both work in the trades. Daylight is essential to what we do. His dad has to live with us, because he has no pension/ money and is legally blind and partially deaf.

    Comment by Ms.Gwen (original poster) at 11:47 AM on May. 18, 2011

  • Put a camera in just to make sure he is not hitting the kids in the wrong way. Is he just mean or do he just act towards the kids like that when you all are not around.

    Answer by rowej at 11:48 AM on May. 18, 2011