Author Topic: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG  (Read 12706 times)

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loopey2u

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I am in a situation and trying to tread lightly and not hurt feelings, but I think only a blunt and almost rude NO is going to get me out of it.

HELP!!

My daughters Brownie leader, whom I have only met one month ago and do not consider a friend by any means, has asked me to watch her child every Sunday from 6 a.m. till Monday morning while she works.   

Monday morning I would be responsible for getting her daughter off to school, along with my other two girls since her mother won't get home till after she leaves.  She will be having breakfast/lunch/dinner/snacks at my home, and will have to shower and do homework here as well.

Mom is a paramedic, and works 24 hour shifts.  Thid third shift she's working is all overtime, since two shifts already gave her 48 hours on the clock.

Her current babysitter is tired of watching her daughter, (for free, which I heard through the grapevine at the school) so she asked me to do it.  For free.  No money was ever discussed while we talked about the arrangements.  I kept waiting for her to bring it up, but she never did.  If she offered even 20.00 I might have considered it, but to assume that I would do it for free when I don't even know her really ticked me off.

I don't want to watch her daughter.  Sunday is the only day all of us are home together, unless I'm working the occasional Sunday, and I try to make it nice for all of us.  We usually watch a movie together or do something else, and I don't want another person here that is not family or close friend.

Another reason is that Sunday is the only day we really get to sleep in, and I don't want to give that up for an acquaintence. For a good friend like my neighbors I'd do it no questions asked, but for a stranger no way.

My hubby works long hours, and Sunday is his day to "veg", and he won't feel comfortable with a strange kid here either.

The mother called me today wondering if I "was still" (assuming incorrectly that I was) going to watch her daughter on Sundays, and I told her no, that we wouldn't be able to.  She then tried to get me to watch her from 6 a.m. till 3 p.m. every other Sunday, and to tell my hubby that he'd only have to watch her till 3 if I had to work that day.  I told her I'd talk it over with hubby.

The pushiness is getting to me.  She's already hit me up to be co-leader of the Brownie troop once a month, and the cookie mom for the troop since nobody else has volunteered.  I don't mind helping out at all, but I feel like this lady will suck the life out of me if I let her have another inch/hour of my time.

Help with responses to the babysitting please.

No is just not working. 

The mother that asked me to babysit also has a mother that lives nearby but is "unavailable" to babysit her grandaughter.  I didn't ask particular reasons why, but I'm assuming they're not on good terms.

 

jimithing

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2007, 09:35:52 PM »
Lather, rinse, repeat.  This is insane. 

Are you willing to do it for compensation and if you were paid?  If so, I would tell her that you will be willing to do it for however much you are, but you will not do it for free.  No ifs, ands, or buts. 

ShadesOfGrey

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2007, 09:38:23 PM »
why isnt No working? Did you ever directly tell her "No?" more than once? From your post, I dont get the impression that you did, so I dont really see where it's being directly refuted by her. 

The first time she asked (before she called) did you tell her directly that you dont want to do it/it wont be possible? Or did you leave it up in the air/not give any kind of direct answer?

The second time, you said you'd talk to your hubby, again, this isnt really a direct "No."  It's leaving it open for opportunity.

Granted, she's pushy, and clearly cant take a hint (your apparent hesitation), but you've really just got to be a bit more assertive about your "No." in this case, I think.
My advice? Dont wait for her to call.  Call her back and just say "BTL, I wanted to let you know that I've discussed it with my husband, and we will not be able to watch your daughter for any amount of time on sunday.  No, I'm sorry, it wont be possible. Sorry, wish I could help, but I cant.  Nope, sorry." etc. etc.  DO NOT give a reason.  Just tell her it wont be possible.  Even if she asks directly why not (she sounds like the type to do this), just avoid the question by repeating the mantras above. 

Good luck! Let us know how it goes. 
Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning. - Maya Angelou

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - Maya Angelou

Lisbeth

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2007, 09:42:47 PM »
I think in this case you need to repeat your "no" more forcefully: "Julie, I'm sorry, but as I said, this won't be possible.  I've discussed this with my husband, and we are not going to be available.  We really need not to be asked anymore."
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loopey2u

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2007, 10:25:03 PM »
We really need not be asked anymore is the tough part.

I know her schedule is tough, but a paramedic is what she's chosen to be.

To expect people to watch your child for free is a little beyond entitlement if you ask me.  Especially since the shifts
she's working are overtime pay shifts.  Expecting other people to watch your kid for free is just entitlement in itself and I will not condone/tolerate it.  2.00 an hour is not an unacepptable rate for a child that's self-sufficient.  I was not offered anything at all.

I am just going to tell her that "No, we will not be available to watch your child at those hours" next time she calls and see what happens.


breny

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2007, 10:58:06 PM »
I wouldn't say "at those hours" because that implies you would be available at some time other than "those hours."

I know it's hard and you're trying to "soften" the blow.  Repeat after me, "No is a complete sentence." 

"No, we won't be able to watch your daughter."  PERIOD. 

freakyfemme

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2007, 11:03:22 PM »

The mother that asked me to babysit also has a mother that lives nearby but is "unavailable" to babysit her grandaughter.  I didn't ask particular reasons why, but I'm assuming they're not on good terms.
 

Ooh, alarm bells......I smell a brat.   :P

loopey2u

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2007, 07:38:33 AM »
Hahaa, you've got a GREAT sense of smell Freaky.

You should see this kid at the Brownie meetings.  She pouts if she doesn't get her way, clings all over her mother and disrupts the whole meeting and her mother doesn't do anything.  Not somebody I really want my daughter to hang around with much if you KWIM.

I am going to work up my courage and call her today and nicely let her know we will not be available at all.

Thanks, all.  I hate doing this kind of stuff, and am still feeling like I am a meanie for not helping out, but I just don't want to do it.

ShadesOfGrey

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2007, 07:56:08 AM »
I am going to work up my courage and call her today and nicely let her know we will not be available at all.

Thanks, all.  I hate doing this kind of stuff, and am still feeling like I am a meanie for not helping out, but I just don't want to do it.

To the first bolded part: yay! good for you.  That's exactly what we're here for. 

To the second: Let me (and others) reassure you - you are NOT a meanie.  This is appropriate boundary-setting.*  Your response is normal, rational and you can rest comfortably in the realm of still being a kind and generous person.


*This is not someone you are close to who is in a pinch, or even any kind of extenuating circumstances.  This is someone looking for free babysitting....
Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning. - Maya Angelou

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - Maya Angelou

Shortcake

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2007, 10:08:10 AM »
I am going to work up my courage and call her today and nicely let her know we will not be available at all.

Thanks, all.  I hate doing this kind of stuff, and am still feeling like I am a meanie for not helping out, but I just don't want to do it.

To the first bolded part: yay! good for you.  That's exactly what we're here for. 

To the second: Let me (and others) reassure you - you are NOT a meanie.  This is appropriate boundary-setting.*  Your response is normal, rational and you can rest comfortably in the realm of still being a kind and generous person.


*This is not someone you are close to who is in a pinch, or even any kind of extenuating circumstances.  This is someone looking for free babysitting....

ITA with this advise. I also think it would be a good idea to say, "I can't do it, so please stop asking."
It sounds like this woman has burned all her bridges. From my experience, people like that do suck the life out of you, and then they move to the next victim.
"Carry out a random act of kindness, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you."  Princess Diana

I'mnotinsane

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2007, 04:01:44 PM »
Practice, practice, practice what you will say before you call.  Say it out loud several times. 

And give us an update...

mzgently

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2007, 04:41:27 PM »

I agree with all the just say no input.  Plus, who wants to have a kid that acts like that around all day on your day off?

On a GS note...it's against the org rules to be both coleader and cookie mom.  You can double check with the local service unit and council, but it is emphasized to us in the mandatory training (for leaders and coleaders) every year that you MUST have two different adults fill those roles.   If this is an existing troop I'm surprised she had any parents/girls return at all.

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lamorevincera

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2007, 05:21:56 PM »
I agree with everyone else - make sure she knows that under no circumstances will you be watching her daughter. You're not being unreasonable; SHE'S the one who's attempting to trample all over your boundaries.

Two thoughts: DO NOT answer your doorbell if it rings that morning, and I'd leave outside lights off as well. Prepare to hear your phone going off, and ignore that as well.

Also, if this woman is the troop leader, I wouldn't *ever* volunteer in any capacity. If she's willing to do this with your time now, can you imagine what you're gonna be in for if you sign up to help the troop?

loopey2u

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2007, 07:06:18 PM »
Well I called her, and just told her that I'm sorry, but we wouldn't be able to help her out at all and wished her luck with finding a babysitter.

No excuses, no promises of being a backup should the other sitters fall through.  Nothing. 

She said she's going to try some of the other moms of girls in the troop and see if any of them will be willing to do it.

Heh.  Good luck.   >:D 

Quote
*This is not someone you are close to who is in a pinch, or even any kind of extenuating circumstances.  This is someone looking for free babysitting....

Thank you Rdge.  If it were somebody I was close to who was in a pinch or somebody who wouldn't be able to buy food if they couldn't work, I would do it in a hearbeat and not think twice about it.  This lady was trying to take advantage. 

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Re: I'm afraid that won't be possible, and just plain NO aren't working. LONG
« Reply #14 on: December 03, 2007, 08:23:05 AM »
Some Girl Scout leaders take the "community" thing a little too far.

(Don't jump all over me, I was a GS leader for four years!)

My co-leader tried to pull the same crap on me, except she wanted me to watch her brat EVERY morning!
This was about 10 years ago, when my kids were younger (9, 7, and 4 at the time).

She was actually offended when I said no! 

Good for you loopey. It's experiences like this that steel up your backbone.  Next time it will be much easier (and more empowering) to say no.  Remember, no one takes advantage of you without your permission.