HomeBabysittingHow do you deal with a family member who wants to charge you for everything they do for you?
Posted in Babysitting on 9th January 2011

How do you deal with a family member who wants to charge you for everything they do for you?
My sister-n-law can never do anything for me and my wife, without expecting to be payed for it. We have watched my nephew numerous times, and haven’t charged her and my brother-n-law for it. They have also done things for us in return. But when it comes to watching our son, she always wants to know how much we are going to pay her. Whatever happened to just doing a favor for a family member? Our son is old enough that he doens’t really need constant supervison, however we don’t think he is old enough to be left alone for hours at a time. It isn’t like she has to change diapers, cook for him, or entertain him, cause he is old enough to do those things himself. All she has to do is supervise him when we are not around. But everytime she watches him, she always comes up and says “So, when did you guys plan to pay me for babysitting?” I thought family was supposed to do favors for each other. She watched him 2 days week before last, and wants to know when she can pick up her money.

Best answer(s):

Answer by Sciencemom
If you know how she is why do you interact with her? My grandmother used to say “if you were hit by a truck today, someone else will take your place tomorrow.” Find someone else to take her place. You’ll find things will be much saner for you and better for your family dynamics.

Answer by Cookies N Cream
Whenever she asks for you to babysit charge her. If she keeps asking for money tell her shes not getting payed , tell her shes a family member and she shouldnt ask for money when its her own nephew shes babysitting.

Answer by monica_dietz@sbcglobal.net
She is telling you in a passive-aggressive way, that she does not want to watch your son. Don’t ask her to do it anymore. If you have to pay her, then it is not a favor to her. Apparently, she has trouble saying no, but really doesn’t want to do it. Just ask another family member to help out.

Give her other opportunities to spend time with her nephew. Go out together with her family and yours, as a peace offering, and forget the baby-sitting.

Answer by alexihorky
She don’t sound like a relative. I think you should try as much as possible to make sure she doesn’t do any favors for you. If you really wanted to pay someone to look after your kid, you would have hired a babysitter and she needs to understand that.

Answer by charlotte j

Here are some solutions:

1. Give her a dose of her own medicine; charge her and maybe she will get the message.

2. Do not ask her to do anything for you anymore. If you keep asking, she will keep charging.

3. Find someone else to watch your child.

4. When she asks for her pay, tell her that you will call it even (We did x for you, and you did y for us, so we are even.)
Hope this helps 🙂

Answer by Kim
Well, I have always thought that family members who ask other family members for favors should pay what they would normally pay others for the same service. I think that your expectation that your sister-in-law SHOULD do this for free is where your thinking is faulty. We all make verbal and non-verbal agreements with one another. But, there is NEVER an agreement when ALL parties don’t agree. And why on earth would you NOT want to pay her? Your child is being cared for by a member of the family and one who you obviously trust with your child. Just because you do it for free doesn’t mean that SHE should. That’s YOUR choice. Obviously it is not hers. And I think it’s unfair for you to project your own ideas on to her. And it doesn’t make her a bad person for wanting to be paid.

Answer by monkeymom
Have you talked to her husband about it? Does he know she’s asking for money? If yes, does he agree with her. You are right … families should be there for each other and not expect anything in return. I guess maybe the problem is that she doesn’t see you guys as family? Does she charge her side of the family?

I’d just go ahead and pay her this time to get her off your back, then the next time she wants you to do something for her tell her up front how much your fee is (be it babysitting, fixing something, whatever). Then she’ll get the message. And don’t ask her to watch your son again. Maybe next time you can make arrangements for your son to stay at a friends house for a play date.

Remember the old saying: burned once shame on them; burned twice shame on you.

Good luck.

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