This 27-year-old woman is a stay-at-home mother. She has two sons, 1 and 5.
After school and during summer vacation, she watches her sister’s 8 and 6-year-old children. Before the children go over to her house, her sister packs snacks for her children. Her sister also compensates her.
“I never asked for a lot because it was never a big deal to me, and I enjoy seeing my niece and nephew. But now things have changed. My sister is engaged, and her future husband lives out of state with his two children. My sister already told me they were hoping I would take care of them. I asked when I would be meeting the kids, and she said they fly in just before the wedding, and I would start right away,” she said.
When she learned this, she told her sister that she’d prefer to get acquainted with her sister’s future stepchildren before she agreed to start watching them. Her sister responded by saying that she and her husband would like to join their families together and start things off on the right foot.
In her sister’s view, the best way to do that would be to treat her future stepchildren as if they were family, just like the rest of the children. In her ideal scenario, the stepchildren would be together with the rest of the children after school.
Then, she explained to her sister that while she could see her perspective, she felt uneasy watching over children for several hours at a time that she’d only been able to meet a couple of times prior.
“My sister asked why I can’t just embrace a big change and throw myself in. I asked her if she was willing to give me some time to get to know the kids. She said no,” she explained.
After her sister rejected her request to at least get acquainted with the stepchildren first, she responded and said that she wasn’t going to watch any of her sister’s children anymore and told her she’d have to find childcare somewhere else.
“My sister told me I was really showing that I only consider family those who are related by blood,” she shared.