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Woman wants brother's fiancée to give her money upfront for babysitting. AITA?

Woman wants brother's fiancée to give her money upfront for babysitting. AITA?


"AITA for asking my brother’s fiancée for money upfront when I take her child places?"


My (f33) brother Ollie (36), his fiancée Lisa, and their kids are currently staying with my family for a holiday. Ollie has a son, Will (7) that he shares with his ex, while Lisa has a daughter, Nia (8) from her previous relationship. I have a daughter, Sienna (6).

Over the past few weeks, I’ve taken the kids out numerous places. The way it has always worked when I’ve babysat Will is I take the kids out and then when I bring Will back I give Ollie or his ex an approximate cost for anything I bought while out and they pay me back.

Obviously this is not a hard and fast rule, sometimes I will tell them not to worry about it if I’ve bought lunch or small souvenirs but if Will comes back with something big, normally Ollie is insistent on paying me back for it. This works the same the other way round.

I thought this would work the same with Lisa, but so far it hasn’t. Since this holiday, and actually over the two years I’ve known her, it either takes her a long time and several nagging reminders from my brother for her to pay me back, or she just doesn’t.

She will try to negotiate paying only a fraction of what is owed, saying she doesn’t have the money and trying to make the costs my fault ie. Saying I should have taken the kids to fast food place instead of a restaurant. This has begun to get very irritating and I have found myself offering to take the kids out less because navigating the money with Lisa has become so awkward.

My husband and I are meant to take the kids out tomorrow, so last night I took Lisa aside and said to avoid any awkwardness, she should give me or Nia the amount of money she is happy to spend on the day upfront. That way, I know in advance what a comfortable budget is for her, and she doesn’t have to worry about paying me back afterwards.

Lisa got very offended and accused me of favouring the bio kids and singling out Nia. I said this had nothing to do with Nia, just Lisa herself, and that I was not happy to subsidise everything that Lisa doesn’t feel like paying for after the fact.

Lisa said this won’t be fair because Nia won’t be able to afford the souvenirs the other kids are getting and I said “Lisa you can’t afford them now either, I’m the one paying for everything”. Lisa got very upset and said she would just pull Nia from the day out.

My husband says I did the right thing, my brother says I should have just been a bit stricter with Lisa about having to cough up and not asked her for the money upfront. I feel bad because now Nia is going to miss out on the outing and Ollie and Lisa don’t get to spend the day alone but I don’t think it’s fair for me to have to ask Lisa 7 times for money I spent on her kid.

Ollie and Lisa keep their finances entirely separate, and they don’t pay for each other’s kids. I was trying to be respectful of that by going to Lisa directly, because while Ollie does nudge Lisa to pay me back, I didn’t think it was prudent to be asking him to pay me for Nia’s expenses, knowing that that is not how they choose to do things. So, AITA?

Here were the top rated comments from readers:


NTA. You're trying to work with her and she's just being unreasonable. Sounds like she wants to have her cake and eat it, too. She wants to continue you paying and her bargaining the price down or not paying for it.


Agreed NTA, and I just want to add that the way op approached her and phrased the asking was about as graceful a way of handling it I've ever seen. Op took her aside, didn't demand a certain amount, and let the budget be up to her. Gf is not a good person.


”my brother says I should have just been a bit stricter with Lisa about having to cough up and not asked her for the money upfront…”

This makes no sense, for one thing. Asking for the money upfront is being strict. And your brother should not be leaving this up to you. And yes, Lisa has been taking advantage of your generosity of time and money. She knows you’re a good parent and aunt and hopes you’ll be guilted into continuing to pay.

It is horrible to have to repeatedly ask someone for money when they ought to automatically hand it over. As is so often the case, no good deed goes unpunished. NTA.


If your brother wants a child-free day, he can pay the money upfront and be “a bit stricter” with Lisa for reimbursement. NTA.


NTA. Lisa caused this by trying to get out of paying completely. Had she just been upfront and said.. only spend x amount there wouldn't have been any problems. She flat out admitted she wanted her daughter to have the same money to spend on souvenirs knowing she didn't have the money herself.


NTA, but talk to your brother as well. He may be willing to cover Nia's costs and /or speak to Lisa directly.

ETA - just saw he is suggesting you should be 'stricter' - no, you shouldn't have to chase Lisa up, you've been doing her a favour and the least she can do is pay up the first time she is asked.

IF he isn't comfortable with you asking for money up front he's free to cover his partner's expense and then he can be 'strict' with her about getting refunded. I'd actually propose that to him, so he can take the responsibility for getting money out of his partner.

So, do you think the OP is being selfish and not treating her brother's fiancée like family or is she being taken advantage of?

Sources: Reddit
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