DEAR JERKASS: I have two children who are not yet old enough for school. My mother-in-law watches them for free a few times a week. She has been "trying" to quit smoking for the last couple of years.
Nine out of 10 times when I take my children to her, she asks me to bring her a pack of cigarettes. I feel obligated to do it because she watches my children for free.
I know I'm not doing her any favors, and I have asked others how I should handle this. They say I should make excuses like, "I don't have any money with me," or, "I forgot to get them." I figure there's only a few more years before she won't have to watch my kids, so after that, I'll never feel obligated to bring her smokes again. Any advice? -- SMOKED OUT IN WISCONSIN
How much does asthma medicine or lung transplants cost? What about treatment for cancer? Cancers been cured, right?
Use the money you spend on cigarettes to hire a babysitter. The cost should be almost the same. But if you are going to drop off your kids to your mothers place anyway, AND buy her cigarettes, why don't you stop by the doctors office and pick up a bunch of pamphlets about the effects of smoking on children. Every time you give her a pack wrap it up in one of the pamphlets. When she lights up, whisper ominously "another seven minutes less time to spend with your grandchildren." You know, be an asshole about it.
But just think about how much free time you'll have when your kids are dead from diseases that could have been prevented!