Granny Nanny,..
and not happy about it.

by Julie

I am sure there are loads of lovely older mums whose children have produced lovely grandchildren, but how do learn to say no !!

I had six children but now, though I have hated retirement, I am working harder than ever.

I look after the babies when the mums go to work and I feel I am not living! Its hard cos they're strugglying with housing costs and cant afford nursery fees but I find it so tiring !!

Wendy First, I wonder if your family knows you "hated retirement".. if so, I wonder if they are trying to keep you busy and happy.

Second, it's a tough place to be in -- want to keep your kids happy, help them out a bit -- but there has to be life left for you.

One idea -- what about telling them that you are happy to do two days a week, but more than that exhausts you (and it does). Just say you are getting too old for kids every day.. whatever! At least you help them out financially, a bit, and they can find a sitter for the other days. Other families work it out somehow, they will too.

Sometimes when I feel bad for my nephews, I think again and wonder where their money goes. They have nicer cell phones, or special cable tv channels, car payments, whatever. Life is a choice.. and they need to figure this money stuff out for themselves at some point. Think about it - there is never enough
money when you have kids.

Just consider asking about doing only a few days a week.. you might LIKE doing a few days to get you out of the house, and have other days where you can do lunch with friends or stay home in your pj's all day!

Best Wishes!!

Comments for Granny Nanny,..
and not happy about it.

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Carol.....I agree!
by: Kim

Carol.....This sounds sooooo much how I am feeling.

I help out with my granddaughter 5 days a week..... Mon Tues and Fri I pick her up from school and keep her for 4 hours then on Saturday I have her for 12 hours.

My daughter has been divorced for two years now and has honestly not made much attempt to take some of the child care load off of me and actually PAY for child care.

I am grumpy, tired and just not loving it. I want my time with my granddaughter to be a choice not mandatory.

My granddaughter will be leaving for the summer in about a month and a half to spend the summer with her Dad......

I intend to have a conversation with my daughter about dropping my child care duties being two days a week.

Julie - do us all a favor and break the "granny" stereotype
by: Anonymous

Wendy, I reread Julie's comment and no where did I read that she was "getting too old for kids everyday."

Julie, there is an assumption that "granny's" will babysit. It's part of the stereotypes we have as older women, and often older women contribute to it by substituting raising their own children with part-time raising grandchildren.

If you don't want to be the default baby-sitter - say so. Tell them what you wrote in your comments here.

You'd like to help them now and again, but don't want to be THE babysitter. You raised your family and now it's time for some breathing room.

Then, find some things you want to do.

Tell them NO!
by: Anonymous

How to say 'no': just say it: "I love the kids dears, but I don't plan on being a babysitter; you'll need to make other arrangements; I have things I'd like to do, like just enjoying my day". Or: "Already did my part dears, I'm done with looking after kids".

No they are not trying to help you feel busy: they like having a free babysitter, and if you don't speak up and say no, then they won't stop. Speak up: they'll respect you for it; as it is; your time is being used by them as if your time belongs to them.

by: Goldie

Your life may have gotten off to a difficult start, but it has definitely improved. You are very blessed to have such a loving family.

Sometimes it's hard to see how fortunate we really are when we are inundated with stress and responsibility. Why don't you plan a little trip away and see how you feel when you return.

You deserve to live YOUR LIFE your way!

God bless you.

Granny Nanny
by: Anonymous

I love my grandkids more then any thing. I love their smiling faces but I had to limit the babysitting to two days a week. My kids live close by so it is easy to drop them off. It was hard at first to lay down the law but my kids did understand.

Glad I'm not alone on this subject
by: Carol

It is difficult to say no - my kids have more than me but then I am home just doing my thing, which I am sure seems to my kids to be doing nothing.

I don't want to be committed to a certain time each weekday. For the first time in my life I want to do my thing, Which might just be doing nothing.

Granny Nanny and Wendy both of your posts have helped to make me feel less selfish. I love my grandkids, all of them but I tire quickly, don't want the responsibility of taking care of kids all day long during summer vacation or their being sick, parents coming home later than expected.

I want to be the Grandmom that the kids are glad to see - for a short visit. Today my dil called and asked me to commit to 2 days a week, same day each week (all summer weekdays, etc) and I said No.

Tomorrow I will see her at a party - and I am dreading seeing her because she was mad when we ended the phone call.

Wendy Initially, yes, your response is not what they were hoping for, or expecting. Still - you have a right to your own life too.. give them a chance to think about it. They may "need" you, they may "want" you for convenience sake, or they may think they are doing you a favor keeping you busy for two days each week... whatever. Everyone is different, we all have options -- and this is your time and your choices! Best Wishes!

To Granny Nanny
by: Anonymous

Dear Nanny.

My husband left me with 8 kids. He had to pay child support and I worked at any job I could get, and take take of my children. As they grew up, there was no more child support, and I lived with whichever kid needed a baby sitter.

Later I married again and I worked my way thru college and a had a very rewarding career.

My grandkids are grown now and they all love
me unconditonally, especially the ones that I
took care of. They never forget I was there for
them while their Moms worked.

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