A Cheat Sheet: Your Sister Can't Pick Up Your Mom from Day Care Because It's "Five Minutes Out of the Way"


A Cheat Sheet: Your Sister Can't Pick Up Your Mom from Day Care Because It's "Five Minutes Out of the Way"

office-620822_640You've been working hard for the past year for a promotion at work. When you get the promotion, you achieve a dream--the job you've long wanted to have.

You've questioned whether you can put the work in you need to get the promotion while caring for your mom. You decide you will do your best and reassess the situation regularly. So far, you've been able to mange both--work and caregiving--even with a few too many scary and stressful moments.

On Tuesday, you have an important meeting with your boss's boss. It's *the meeting* to discuss your performance and to learn if you'll be promoted. On Tuesdays, your mom attends a local adult day center (a godsend). Typically, you pick your mom up at 4:45 p.m., leaving work early but working later at home. But, this Tuesday, you have to work late to be available for a late afternoon meeting with the boss's boss.

You debate your options and decide to ask your sister to pick up your mom. You've asked her for other types of help but it's just been errand running and phone calls. This is the first time she would have to directly help your mom.

A week before the Tuesday meeting, you call your sister, explaining your situation. You make the request: "Can you pick up Mom from the adult day center? She would need to be picked up at 4:45 and then dropped off at my house. Bill (your husband) will be home from work by then and will take care of Mom until I get home."

Silence greets your request.

And, then, your sister says, "I wish I could but I can't help. Stopping to get Mom is five minutes out of my way."

You lips starts to quiver and the tears fill your eyes.

What to do?

A Cheat Sheet:
Your Sister Can't Pick Up Your Mom from Day Care Because It's "Five Minutes Out of the Way"

1. Tell your sister, "I'm upset you can't help. Tuesday is a very important day for me. But if you won't help, you won't. I'll figure out something else."

2. After you put down the phone, cry. Let it out. Because this is a situation that simply sucks.

3. Call the director of the adult day center and explain the situation. Ask: "Would you have any suggestions for me? I have to stay at work late on Tuesday."

4. The director suggests you use their transportation service, which you've always declined thinking it would be too much for your mom.

5. "Okay," you say, "Let's do it."

6. You take the director up on her second suggestion: To ride the van with your mom on Friday and Monday so you can meet the van driver and feel more comfortable with how the service works.

7. Your husband adjusts his work schedule to drop you off at the adult day center on Friday and Monday so you can ride the van home. You like the driver, you appreciate how well he takes care of the passengers, all from the adult day center.

8. On Tuesday, you stay late for the meeting with a clear conscience. You know your mom is in good hands.

9. You get the promotion.

10. You treat yourself and your husband to a special dinner. And, you send a thank you note to the adult day center director. You now have a back-up plan just in case you need to stay late at work again.

Like this article? Share on social


Sign in to comment


11. Remove sister from speed dial.


Really good, Denise. Thank you for sharing that strategy. I'm sure many people--maybe even me--will find it helpful sometime!


Wow. Denise, you have the most incredible attitude. I'm glad you have a back up plan now. I get frustrated at times because I'm the only one in state. All my sibs are across the country, but I think it would be much harder to have sibs close who would choose to do something like this.