My neighbor and I have been swapping sitting services for the last four years. Our now seven year old DDs get along great and it gives us all an easy way to have a much needed night out. Recently, I have been watching her DD after school a few afternoons a month (I work from home) and occasionally on a weekend. No money has ever changed hands for these sitting services.
A few months ago, DH had a last minute business dinner and I was invited. The neighbors were busy, so they asked if we wanted their older daughter to sit and told us her rate (this daughter is a college freshman). Since I desperately wanted to get out (and dinner was paid for!), I agreed. Now, though, it seems we have opened a can of worms and every time we ask if they can watch our DD, they seem to always be busy and offer their daughter's services instead - at her going rate.
We really can't afford both a sitter AND a night out. I also feel very resentful that they want us to pay, yet have never offered to pay ME for all the afternoons and weekends. Their older DD is in classes at the time I am watching their younger one, but I almost feel that they should offer to pay her fee when we need a sitter. I am terrible at confrontations and I'm not sure what to do here. Any ideas?