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I need your opinion. Please.

Posted by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 8:29 PM
  • 11 Replies
I recently started watching my niece and nephew twice a week. Tuesdays (7:30-5:30) and Thursdays (10-7). My brother and sister-in-law are just a couple steps short of their divorce being finalized. My brother already moved out and has his own apartment. Their custody arrangement is he has the kids every other weekend. She has them the rest of the time. He is a police officer and works odd hours, which is why he gets them for such a small amount of time.

Anyway, we just started this babysitting arrangement maybe 5-6 weeks ago? My kids had been pretty healthy all school year. DD had not missed a day of school. The week I started watching their kids, everything went down the tubes. My nephew was sick the very first day they came here -- diarrhea and then a fever. Following that, my entire family got a bad stomach flu that lasted a week. They had to figure out alternate care for one Thursday during that mess. Then last week my nephew was sick again with a fever and a cold. My SIL took off work and kept him home. Then the kids were with me last Thursday again. Both of them had low grade fevers when they were picked up on Thursday. On Saturday, SIL had to take my niece to the ER because she had a high fever that would not go down. I had them here again yesterday. No fevers for their kids. But then my DD woke up that morning with a 102 fever. After nap, my middle child woke up with a 101 fever.

Now all 3 of my kids have fevers. Higher fevers... 100-102. Motrin works for a while and then it keeps coming back. They also have coughs and nasal congestion. I am pretty sure they have influenza, but there is nothing we can do about it. We have to ride it out.

Anyway, here is my question... I am supposed to watch my niece and nephew tomorrow. They are still sick with the bad colds they had on Tuesday. My kids are all still actively sick with fevers. Do you think I should still watch my niece and nephew? Would it be unfair for me to cancel on them? I know they do not have back-up care. My SIL took off last week and took off a few weeks ago when we got the stomach flu. I hate to make her take off another day (and I know my brother will NOT step up and help her out). I am just not really sure I can handle 5 kids, 3 of whom are actively sick and 2 who have colds... for 8 hours. I asked if he can go to work just a couple hours later so that my day is not SO long, and he said no.

If I cancel, SIL will have to take off work... AGAIN. She gets paid hourly. She'll lose a lot of pay. My brother gets paid salary, so him taking off would not affect his pay. I feel terribly about putting her in that position... but then again, my kids are sick!!! I just want to focus on taking care of them and getting them better. Not to mention they started with coughs today and my son has bad asthma and is at risk for another asthma attack. If something happens to him, I am not wanting to take 5 kids to the ER with me. I want to tell them no, but I feel badly... we never really figured out specifically what the expectation would be when the kids get sick... So I am not sure what to do. I am feeling pulled in two different directions.

Thoughts? Help??
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by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 8:29 PM
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Replies (1-10):
mackiebugsmom
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 8:50 PM
Talk to your SIL and see what she thinks. I would let her know that you would prefer her to find alternative care for tomo but if she can't you will still keep them...that's just what I would do though. Good luck & I hope that sickness leaves you all alone soon!
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lyrick24
by Platinum Member on Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:08 PM

 i would call sil and tell her your kids are sick and that if your son has an asthma attack there is no way of getting him to the hospital with  that many kids.

susieQ680
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:13 PM

I would cancel for sure

Stevensmomma
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:17 PM

Tell her the kids are actively sick and have high fevers and you would rather not watch them 

slw123
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:18 PM

This!

Quoting mackiebugsmom:

Talk to your SIL and see what she thinks. I would let her know that you would prefer her to find alternative care for tomo but if she can't you will still keep them...that's just what I would do though. Good luck & I hope that sickness leaves you all alone soon!


PoehlerBear1983
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:23 PM
I agree with this


Quoting mackiebugsmom:

Talk to your SIL and see what she thinks. I would let her know that you would prefer her to find alternative care for tomo but if she can't you will still keep them...that's just what I would do though. Good luck & I hope that sickness leaves you all alone soon!

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MamaAjax
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:44 PM
1 mom liked this

I'd say it's more the weather, also when kids merge households it takes a while for the germs to balance out especially if they go to different schools. Getting sick can actually be a good thing in the long run. As far as the asthma, that's a worry. I wouldn't want to have to take 5 of my own kids to the E.R. with me if the 6th one got sick, much less someone elses kids. Maybe work out an alternative back up? You know, the last case senerio mom, who might can watch the kids here or there one day or another if something major comes up. Otherwise I don't think the illnesses will last much longer. I'd say this is a moment to fly all over your brother, but then again maybe I'm bias.

Your his sister >.> a few swats of sibling love upside his head wouldn't hurt to much.

I do know though divorce doesn't mean suddenly the mother is the sole care provider and has to sacrafice her whole life. It takes two people to make a kid, it should take two to raise them, she's losing his income mostly, she shouldn't be losing his support when it comes to their kids.

You really might need to sit them BOTH down.

Help your SIL, if you're free to do so, find an extra babysitter. I do know of a handful of ladies in our area (not moms) who are on SSID and they babysit under the table. They're just looking for a little extra pocket change, so their rates are super reasonable.

Threes.Company
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 10:12 PM
Thanks for all the insight, ladies!!!
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chillemi78
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 10:39 PM
If its a cold they have already given each other, it won't do any more harm for them to be around each other tomorrow. When I did home daycare, even when I watched my good friend's daughter, I did a contract to lay out all the rules, just so it wasn't a question and didn't bring tension later. You might want to sit down with your SIL and figure out some ground rules, so you two can be on the same page. I personally said it was ok for the kids to come over with colds. Kids get germs everywhere, and that exposure builds immunity. Besides, by the time they show symptoms, they've already passed the germs on. My rule was fever, diahrrea or vomiting were the kids stay out of my house conditions. The parents really appreciated this and then respected the rule when the kids were really sick (although we still couldn't avoid a stomach bug once-we were all down at our respective homes for over a week!) This also allowed them to save sick days for when it was really necessary. I also had an emergency contact list. It included the other parent, plus 2 back ups. Your brother should be one of the first to call if needed, so if your child has an asthma attack, you can get your niece and nephew picked up and then get care for your child. Its good to have someone on your end too, just in case. A friend that can run over if something comes up or the emergency contacts can't be reached. You might come off as being too worried, anal, uptight, whatever, but I know it was all so nice when we never had a fight or misunderstanding about what was expected.
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bether89
by on Apr. 3, 2013 at 10:45 PM

This is what I would do.

Quoting mackiebugsmom:

Talk to your SIL and see what she thinks. I would let her know that you would prefer her to find alternative care for tomo but if she can't you will still keep them...that's just what I would do though. Good luck & I hope that sickness leaves you all alone soon!


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