A woman wanted to know if she was being unreasonable for denying her brother sister-in-law’s request.
The 32-year-old took to Reddit’s “Am I the A******” forum for advice. It all started when her brother and sister-in-law (SIL) assumed, without asking, that she would watch their 10-month-old child every day during the week. The woman has a 14-year-old son of her own who attends school remotely. Meanwhile, she works from home, while her husband works away from home. Needless to say, caring for another child while also fulfilling a day job’s duties became too overwhelming.
“My brother and SIL have a beautiful baby boy who is 10 months old,” the woman wrote. “For the last 3 months, since I have been working from home they have been expecting me to babysit him. They live with my SIL’s mother in her house. My brother works retail so his work days/hours change weekly. My SIL is a teacher’s aide and with school starting, she is constantly bringing my nephew to my house to watch him so she can go to meetings.”
At first, the woman tried to be a good sport, but things became unsustainable.
“I still have to work and my son is resuming school online so it is not feasible to have the baby here all week while I am working and my son is in school. My husband works outside our home and is not available to help me during the day,” she explained.
So when the woman’s sister-in-law called her to babysit, she declined. Then things got ugly.
“I told her that this arrangement is not going to work for me anymore,” the woman said. “She got upset and asked me what she was supposed to do and I told her that I am more than happy to watch him on a weekend or in an emergency, but they need to find other arrangements during the week.”
Then things got even uglier.
“My brother started yelling at me and I told him that this was their child and therefore their responsibility to find appropriate care for him, not me,” she said. “Now my mom and sister and SIL’s mother are blowing up my phone calling me selfish and now I feel bad. My husband thinks I should ignore them and it’s not my problem.”
Most Reddit users were on the woman’s side.
“So SIL has three other people that could take over babysitting responsibilities, not a one has stepped up, and they’re calling you selfish? That’s precious,” one person commented.
“You’re working. Even if you were sitting on the couch eating Cheetos and watching tv all day it’s still not your responsibility,” another said.
“I’m with your husband. You didn’t sign up to co-parent this kid. You’re not their free babysitting service,” someone said.
If you liked this story, check out In The Know’s new advice column, Group Chat.
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