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A Carpool Conundrum

What happens when a seemingly convenient carpool arrangement with a friend turns into a bumpy ride for one side?

Whoever invented the idea of carpooling is really a genius. Instead of doing the dreaded preschool/camp/activity drop-off and pick-up everyday, you share the responsibility with someone else (or a few someones) and take turns, leaving yourself a little additional time (and gas) on your off days. It works out especially well when you and your fellow carpooler live nearby, and even better when your kids all adore each other and like going to and from places together.

So it’s all good, except….when it isn’t. In my case, my nanny drives my kids to and from school and activities daily. When the idea of a carpool was broached by my neighbor and friend (let’s call her Karen) whose child goes to the same school as mine, it made perfect sense. Why hadn’t we thought about it earlier than in their last year of preschool?!?

It was working out beautifully until Karen, who is a stay at home mom, took on a new job and wasn’t able to share in the driving duties as easily as before. While our nanny picked up some additional rides here and there at first, it started to seem like we were doing the fair share of it. Because our nanny’s sole job is to care for our kids, I couldn’t exactly push back and say she wasn’t available when clearly she was. And because I value the friendship with Karen, I agreed to help out – after all, taking on a new job after being out of the workforce for many years wasn’t an easy decision for her.

We are still working out the specifics of how it will benefit both of us, but I did make it clear that I wanted it to be fair and convenient for her AND my nanny – otherwise, what was the point? I believe that my honesty with her helped open up the dialogue and we are moving past this slight bump in the carpool lane.

Share your story of carpool drama and resolution here!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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