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'AITA for calling out my brother's double standard after he got annoyed I asked him to babysit?'

'AITA for calling out my brother's double standard after he got annoyed I asked him to babysit?'


Double standards abound, and no one loves to enforce them more than entitled people.

In a popular post on the AITA subreddit, a woman asked if she was wrong for telling her brother he "can't have it both ways" after he threw a fit about her asking him to babysit. She wrote:

"AITA for telling my brother he can't have it both ways?"

I (F33) am a SAHM with my 3-year-old son while my husband works full-time. This story involves my brother (M31). He is also a parent and lives with his wife and two kids, (F7 and M3). My brother and his wife both work during the day, and their youngest goes to daycare three days a week. The rest of the week, they usually relied on my mom for childcare.

However, she has recently started refusing and said they need to find other arrangements. This caused a pretty big rift in their relationship to the point where my brother wasn't speaking to our mom and my SIL refused to spend Christmas with her. They're on better terms now but it was quite tense. My brother has asked if I can take my nephew for the 2 days a week.

I agreed, it is a bit of extra work for me but he is a good kid and my son looks forward to seeing his cousin. We had this arrangement going since right after the holidays. Last week, I asked my brother if he and his wife could take care of my son on the Saturday, as my husband and I were attending a child-free wedding.

Originally, my MIL had volunteered to babysit but unfortunately she had to cancel as she was sick. My brother agreed. The next day, he sent me a long text message, saying that he and his wife agree that I "put them on the spot" and made them feel that they had to babysit, and that they aren't obligated to watch my son just because we're family and that they might have other things to do.

I was quite annoyed at this, especially since I've been watching their child without complaining?! I admit it was a last minute request, but I think my brother is being crazy unreasonable. I texted him back and said he can't have it both ways.

Expecting me to help him out with childcare because we're family, but I can't expect the same from him, and that if that's the way he wants it, I'm not watching his son anymore. My brother says I'm being childish and that he didn't say he won't watch my son, just that I shouldn't expect him to always say yes since he and his wife are very busy, and it's not like us attending the wedding was urgent.

He's now not speaking to me. My mom told me to just not play his game but I just need some outside opinions here. AITA?

The internet was fully in OP's corner.

pjeans wrote:

NTA. Listen to your mom-- she's already been there! This should be a two way street, where you can both count on each other. If not, then it's time to end the arrangement. I am curious about whether they pay you for child care? It doesn't change my opinion about you, but it does change my opinion about his level of entitlement.

OP responded:

They haven't paid me for the childcare, no, but we are from a culture where it is more normal for family members to babysit. My brother did give me some money to go towards buying snacks for the kids but that's it.

BeardManMichael wrote:

Could he find alternative arrangements if you were unable to help with free babysitting?

OP responded:

I don't see why they couldn't. The three days of daycare is a free perk my SIL gets at her job, so they would either have to pay for an extra two days at the daycare or find a babysitter/nanny. They both make decent money, they could afford it.

Lower_Blacksmith8914 wrote:

NTA. Your brother has crossed the line. He could have refused but he blamed you and felt pressured to look after your child? And he argued why they have more right to refuse and the non-urgent reason for your request?

I think you'll help, help, help these people but you'll never get anything from them. It's not a question of expecting something in return, but there is something called "solidarity". When your mom refused to offer them her services, they should have thanked her and moved on instead of holding it against her. Stop babysitting your nephew and let them fend for themselves.

momof20408 wrote:

NTA your brother and his wife are acting very entitled and selfish. This is probably the reason your mom stopped watching the child as well. I bet your mom asked for a small favor and they didn’t want to do it so your mom refused to watch there child any longer.

Your brother and his wife with there one way attitude is why eventually no one will want anything to do with them and they are going to have to pony up that daycare money.

coffeemom23 wrote:

NTA at all. Their entitlement and ingratitude is breathtaking. I'm not surprised your mom got sick of this, she's obviously speaking from experience. Honestly, OP, I would stop taking care of your nephew for them, or demand payment for it - if you let them treat you this way without consequences, it will only get worse.

Angie_ER wrote:

NTA. It's like he expects you to care for his kids, but cannot do the same for you. He could normally refuse, that would be fine and acceptable - just say he had other plans. But he done this instead, he thinks family is the reason to babysit only if it's about someone else doing it for him. You should stop doing it.

StellaSparklz wrote:

NTA. Your brother is being totally unfair here. You've been helping him out with childcare for his son without any fuss, and when you asked for a small favor in return due to a last-minute emergency, he suddenly acts like you're asking for the world. It's not cool for him to expect you to always be there for him while refusing to reciprocate when you need help.

You stood up for yourself and set a boundary, which is totally reasonable. Hopefully, he'll come to understand that relationships should be based on mutual support and respect. You did the right thing by standing your ground.

OP is clearly NTA here, her brother sounds like he can't handle a truly reciprocal relationship.

Sources: Reddit
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