I'm a SAHM and my 2 yr old boy stays at home with me during the day. I've been watching my friend's 2 yr old son 3 (sometimes 4) days a week since last winter while she has been taking classes at the community college. When it started, I offered to watch him for a few hours a day and she offered to pay me. I told her I wasn't doing it for the money, though she knows we are financially strapped and anything she gives me definitely helps. At first, I would watch him like 8-noon. During the summer, her daughter came over a few days as well (and I had my 2 older girls at home). Last semester I watched him 8-2:30. This semester (that started in January) I started out watching him 9-3 two days and 9-5 one day. Then she changed it to 9-3 one day and 9-5 two days. Last week one of those long days became 9-7 and it worked out so well for HER that she wants to continue that.
Not only do I feel bad that her son is spending SO much time away from his family, but things around here are beginning to change as well. The afternoons are seriously getting stressful at my house. When my girls get home from school I have to help them with homework, check over work and sign forms, oversee the 2 year old boys playing/fighting over toys and make dinner. Wednesday is now the 9-7 day and we have church that night as well. So we have to eat dinner a little earlier, pick up an elderly lady on the way to church and drop off my friend's son to his house all before church starts at 7pm. Last night she asked for more time and so I ended up bringing him to church with us and dropping him off afterwards - at 8:15.
This whole time she hasn't offered me any more money than when I started a year ago. But again, I'm not doing it to make a ton of money. But I also feel like she is completely taking advantage of me. On the other hand... she's going to be going to school and needing homework time and she would put him in a child watch program if I wasn't watching him. She has looked into Preschools and they cost too much. There is a place called Playdate in town that will keep your child for $7 an hour, but they have a limit of 5 hrs a day I think, and he can't nap there. She has said how grateful she is that he is here with someone who he knows and loves.
I'm really conflicted. I don't want to rock the boat. She's overly stressed with harder classes this semester and I know she needs the extra time for homework, study groups, etc.
And don't even get me started about where her 7 year old daughter is doing after school. These poor children just want their mom.