Parent Boundaries?

Postby CandyApples » Sat May 30, 2020 5:35 pm

Long time no see all! Hope everyone is well! I need advice, didnt know where to put it.
Ill TRY to keep it short.
To fill you in:
- childs mom (whom at first judged my kid and myself for our apparences, etc) has been reaching out to me more because our kids are best friends, and within the past few months the mom I think kinda saw she shouldnt have judged bc we are good people.....
........this mom is extremely competitive though and so is her kid, always makes sure her kid is #1 in academics and success, good....we both value our kids but I mention this because I feel it may have something to do with my issue....
..this mom to me... I wouldnt say is a friend....she texts me only really if she needs something or when the the girls sleep over, small chit chat about school...thats it...other wise is hi /bye. While I would be this ladys friend we have not gotten there yet....
....so anyways...with this virus making schools on line, she asked if her child could come over and I watch her kid 4 days a week and help with schooling...which I have faithfully, for 3 months...and the kid is excellent..no complaints at all...except as restless as older kids are on lockdown I still have to entertain, make sure they (her and my kid) eat, and wake up hours earlier than I normally would (which takes a toll bc Im a full blooded night owl.)
I did this no problem. The mom then...suggests in a backdoor way, that I continue doing this for the summer....in which I have managed to dodge with " I will see about my schedule bc of xyz..." and now, she wants me to take her kid home from school....when and if school starts in the fall....(granted I am going past the house mostly)..
My Issue is:
The bus is available but doesnt like the school bus (either do i though)
We arent really friends enough for me to be taking on all this I feel, and I wonder if shes doing it just to get ahead?
I had to quit so many jobs, sacrifice etc and find work and a lifestyle suitable to my priorities...just so Im able to be more flexable in my kids care...so why cant she??
She also has a husband that doesnt go into work until 430, school gets out at 2.... (but she may ..at some point divorce him??)
she also has a adult son that lives with her, who could help in transport, and the mom has a job which is somewhat flexable in hours.....
.......I just dont want to commit myself soley with this responsibility bc what if my kid wants to do a afterschool club? What if she rides home with another friend one day? What if I take a job where I cant get my kid and my hubby has too and takes her back to his job? What if I have a cold and all I wanna do is go straight home??? Am I being selfish? I feel if the lady didnt have the above resources I would be more inclinced, but I never asked for any help, and take it upon myself to look after my own family...please help, need advice...great family just..I really want to focus on my own responsibilities exp during these trying times....
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#1

Postby CandyApples » Sat May 30, 2020 5:59 pm

Also, my kid bday is 4 days before her kid bday...so typically i have her bday a weekend prior...but this year and next...her bday is middle of week, which would leave that coming weekend to have it (weekend prior is a major holiday)..and the other moms child bday is at the end of that weekend....so I text her saying hey Im planning this and that for my kids bday (granted its months in advance) and shes like well my kids bday is on (end of weekend) so shes taking the whole weekend to figure out her plans and mAY BE BUSY.....so i post poned my kids bday a week later, so the girls can attend eachothers and we are not fighting over days...my thing is im always budging, and Im only taking 1 day for a party, not the whole weekend like she wants......so I feel she never budges....and next year is a huge mildstone for them both and I refuse to make my kid wait another 7-14 days after her bday just bc the one mom wants the weekend. To me whoevers bday is first, kinda gets the next available day...(exp if wer are going to be as close to where Im taking you kid home all the time and helping with school)....again, I truly like these ppl, I just dont feel like...I feel like she doesn view me as a friend..and more of someone who bends and helps????
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#2

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Sat May 30, 2020 8:52 pm

CandyApples wrote:...I feel like she doesn view me as a friend..and more of someone who bends and helps????


As with your previous threads you try to complicate things. You do this to yourself. You are the one that is constantly keeping score. You are the one that keeps a mental ledger of who you think owes you for whatever acts you have done, e.g. watch another parents kid.

No one is holding a gun to your head. Do whatever you want to do. If you want to watch her kid say yes. If not, don’t. But don’t agree to watch her kid and then build up some expectation that this means this other parent owes you “friendship” or anything else. Stop keeping tally of what you think you are owed or what you believe is fair.

Stop with the mind games that you like to play with yourself. No one else is playing, You are the one that builds expectations and keeps score of who owes who. The other person isn’t playing your game. They aren’t keeping score. If you tell them that you don’t have time to watch their kid life will go on, the world will continue to spin.
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#3

Postby Candid » Mon Jun 01, 2020 6:49 am

CandyApples wrote:I just dont want to commit myself soley with this responsibility


So don't.

I see alternatives:
1) Tell her straight up that you work at home and you're not prepared to look after her child
2) Tell her what your hourly rate is for child-minding and which hours you can do this

IOW, Candy, you call the shots. In the present arrangement she's using you, and progressively asking for more. Before much longer you'll have agreed to clean her house and have dinner ready when she gets home.

This is not a friend. It's an overly assertive woman who's found a stooge.
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#4

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Mon Jun 01, 2020 2:10 pm

Candid wrote:This is not a friend. It's an overly assertive woman who's found a stooge.


I’m not so sure. Candy is the one that keeps a tally of who owes who. Candy is the one that expects if she does XYZ then she is owed friendship. This other woman might have no idea that Candy is keeping score. She just knows Candy as a person that is constantly willing to help and is oblivious to the game Candy likes to play.
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#5

Postby CandyApples » Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:26 am

ohh boy, lol I forgot how it goes on here...no Im not keeping score but Iam very much aware of the phrase treat others how you want to be treated. I think im ok to wonder what to do ---this mother is hard to figure out sometimes is all and I dont want to mold my life in a way that helps hers if its not for legit reasons. I mean, it bugs me when she comes up to me and is like "so what chapter is your kid on" and compares it to her kid then will see if i can work with her kid to get her caught up, or will be like did yourrrr kid get a award bc so and so did, or what did your school letter say bc my kid got this(higher up) one...I just...I just dont operate like that. I treat both girls equally and exp infront of eachother, this mom will point blank-take saturday for example...leave my kid on the side line. and my kid sees it bc she mentions it without a word from me.....and its like..I duno...guess Im wrong for expecting to be treated like I treat others...Richard?? Its no big deal, I did what Candid mentioned and made up my own mind bc at the end of the day Im responsible for me and my life...I was just having a inner conflict that I needed help on....Richard..though..I would love to hear one time you ever had a conflict or a issue where you didnt come across as perfect, bc you judge...alot. Peoples feelings are not keeping score...Guess thats what opinons are about though. Stay well! I mean..when someone asks me are you still looking for a job, I would figure its bc they were generally concerned, not just to see if I would play pick up. Theres a article I read about ppl viewing housewives as door mats, as having more time or valueless time than ppl who go to a outside office...and many MANY ppl are feeling the same way I did, with other parents almost expecting them to play transport, or babysit etc..(yet are too busy when your in a bind).....and those housewives feel bad...and bend...and then...at some point am like...uhm..hmm Im busy too wth...etc..etc...so its that article I read that helped me in the end. Its human nature to observe actions and reactions of others....its not keeping score.
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#6

Postby CandyApples » Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:33 am

"I’m not so sure. Candy is the one that keeps a tally of who owes who. Candy is the one that expects if she does XYZ then she is owed friendship. This other woman might have no idea that Candy is keeping score. She just knows Candy as a person that is constantly willing to help and is oblivious to the game Candy likes to play."

Literal response to the above...we all were playing board games, and speaking of keeping score we all watched this mom mark her kids points down, but not the rest of us for score (outside of here and there) 5 of us saw and commented on it later...... lol aannnndd the rules were us moms couldnt play bc we drew up the answers, but guess who chimed in the game to score for her team haha..not me....oh wells..its no biggie just needed to vent
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#7

Postby CandyApples » Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:49 am

I feel bad , Candid and Richard I even made this post, bc most of my venting is really no big deal, and Im very happy for this mom and her child to be in my life, just was a little---fazzeled by a few things..and Im protective with my kid and dont like the comparison game.....but again ppl would have to know the whole story for the bigger picture and really...it is water under bridge in my mind........but with the latest going on in society ---there is soo much more to worry about than me wondering about the little things.

Candid I hope your staying well and keeping strong!
Richard, I hope your staying well and keeping stubborn ha!

Ill be on here again at some point Im sure..
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#8

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Fri Jun 05, 2020 5:01 am

CandyApples,

I hope you stay well and am glad that you find your way into the forum every now and then. It is my hope that the conversations here might help you. Possibly the conversations will give you pause to think about how your "venting" is always about your judgments of others. And more importantly how those judgments negatively impact your life.

I do offer judgment CandyApples. This is a forum for public discussion. People come into the forum seeking judgment. Sure, you can slap a label on it that sounds better to you such as seeking "support, advice, help, an opinion," but it all boils down to others reading what you have written and offering up their thoughts.

A valuable difference for you to consider is that my judgments in this forum have no negative impact on my life. And in this forum, neither do your judgments. But outside of this forum, your judgments are having a negative impact on your life. They are having such an impact that you choose to come into the forum and share your judgments of others. You post your complaints about those you have been judging as you keep a mental tally of how they should act or what you are owed, etc.

I think your life would be much more positive if you spent less time focused on what other people are doing.
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#9

Postby tokeless » Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:23 am

I duno...guess Im wrong for expecting to be treated like I treat others.

Ain't that the truth. You're not wrong to sort of expect it, like quid pro quo but by waiting for a return you set yourself up for rejection and that can be upsetting. I think you either continue to be useful or helpful candy or you set boundaries on what you will do for others. It's not mean spirited to do this because you can still help out. What it does do is gives you the choice to help with no return or suggest "maybe we could help each other out with these things?" If they then don't, well there's your answer that they are using you.
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#10

Postby Candid » Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:34 am

CandyApples wrote:guess Im wrong for expecting to be treated like I treat others...


A reciprocal arrangement is probably more common that an exploitative one. Maybe this woman thinks she's trading something else, I don't know.

I'm inclined to agree, though, that it's unwise to count on other people giving as much as you yourself give. Maybe it's a time in this woman's life when she needs extra help, and will 'repay' you in some way in the future. However, it sounds (from what you say) as if she has a sense of entitlement and isn't even grateful. That would rankle with me.

If I resent doing something I stop doing it. To me it's simple.

MANY ppl are feeling the same way I did, with other parents almost expecting them to play transport, or babysit etc..(yet are too busy when your in a bind)....
its not keeping score.


Some people are givers and some are takers. Most of us are a mix of both, knowing there are people who don't have anything to give. That doesn't seem to be the case here. So why are you doing it? It ought to be that it feels good.

I'm more comfortable giving than receiving, because it's a power position. I think you're probably the same. Of course it's also possible to enjoy the implied power of giving AND resent the time it takes up, the other person's attitude, or both.

You're clearly not happy about it. In that case I'd be out of the arrangement.
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