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Dad Asks To Be Paid To Babysit His Daughter & Her Friend While Wife Goes For 'Fancy' Dinners With The Friend's Father

Photo: Ketut Subiyanto / Andrea Piacquadio / Pexels
Man with kids, woman on a date

"My wife and I live in a suburban house with our daughter, Emily, 10. Our neighbor next door, Walter, 48, is a single father with two daughters, 14 and 12," a man started off a confessional, posted to the subreddit  "r/AmItheA--hole" (AITA).

The subreddit is an online forum where users try to figure out if they were wrong or not in an argument that has been bothering them.

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He asked to be paid to babysit his daughter and her friend while his wife goes out for 'fancy' dinners with her friend's father.

In his Reddit post, the 39-year-old man explained that his wife has a love of scary movies, while he does not. 

"Her friends sometimes go with her to the more popular ones but she also likes older, indies, and foreign horror movies. She has always had a hard time finding people that have this niche interest and that is why it was such a big deal when we met Walter and found out he also shares this tendency."

Soon, his wife and Walter began making plans to watch movies together, and while he was also invited along, he refused.

Instead, he prefers to stay home and babysit his daughter, Emily, and Walter's daughter, who are friends. Most of the time, his wife and Walter come back home late as they usually have to go to the next town over to watch some of the movie showings.

Other times, the two of them stay at Walter's house and watch movies in his home theater. Though, Walter and the man's wife began doing other things outside of seeing movies, such as going out for dinner.

"Walter invited all of us, including the kids, to go with him to a restaurant that a friend of [his] owned but I said no because it was too expensive. I don't like that kind of place because I feel they are a waste of money and didn't think the kids would enjoy it either."

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He insisted on staying behind with his daughter and Walter's daughters to babysit and thinks the entire thing is good for him since Walter takes his wife out for fancy dinners so she can't complain that he never does.

However, since his wife and Walter's movie and dinner outings have become more frequent, he has started growing tired of babysitting the girls.

After talking about it with Walter, who pointed out that he doesn't like leaving his daughters with babysitters and feels comfortable that an "experienced father" is watching his children instead of a teenage babysitter, Walter agreed to start paying him.

"He nevertheless agreed that it was too much of a load for me and offered to start paying me a standard babysitter fee each time he goes out with my wife," he wrote. "I thought that was a fair approach to the issue but my wife was fully against it."

His wife argued that he shouldn't be paid for babysitting his own child or the child of a close friend of their family. The two of them have continued to argue, but his wife won't budge on the decision.

"Walter promised me that he will convince her but he does not seem to have been able to do so either," he concluded.

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Most Reddit users agreed that the father was in the wrong for wanting to be paid to babysit.

"The answer is to try to engage in your wife's interests and find stuff you two can do together, not to start taking a salary to watch the kids," one user wrote.

Another user added, "It seems you are more into being cheap than spending time with your own wife."

"You should have accepted that [invitation] to dinner nights, but you were too cheap. And now you are demanding babysitting money from a [man] who treats your wife to a night out."

A third user chimed in, "You don’t babysit your own kid. The neighbor’s child is a different story. But I think your marriage is in trouble. You’ve essentially isolated yourself from activities with your wife. You seem completely fine with another man wining and dining your spouse."

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics.