Babysitting

A question for moms! I have been babysitting for four or five years now, loving the chance to interact with different families and their little ones. I babysat for one of the teachers at my high school about six or seven times since last [name]December[/name] when her daughter [name]Eve[/name] was about 13 months old. I have since graduated (this past [name]May[/name]) but I did some babysitting over the summer and I sent a little card when [name]Eve[/name] turned two in [name]November[/name]. My teacher just recently had a new little one some time in [name]October[/name]. I want to let her know that I’ll be back for a long while this [name]December[/name] and [name]January[/name] on my break from school and that I would love to come babysit since her daughter is absolutely one of my favorite children with whom I’ve ever interacted (seriously, she’s the little sister I never had, haha).

So, after setting the scene, my question is: would you let me come babysit a 2-year-old and a 2-month-old for a few hours? Keep in mind that I have taken babysitting and CPR courses and plan to be re-certified next month when I am home. I am almost 19 and have already established a relationship of trust with the family. I will admit to not having a lot of experience with newborns, as I’ve never cared for a child under 11 months by myself. I just really love their family and their daughter and would love the opportunity to get to know their new son.

Should they decide to hire me at all during the time, what advice would you give me (or anyone) about caring for an infant and a toddler simultaneously?

Thanks to anyone who survived my rambling and for providing any answers! [name]Happy[/name] Holidays!

I think I babysat an infant for the first time when I was fourteen. If you are confident and comfortable, the parents will see that and be trusting with you. I grew up as the oldest grandchild and always had young kids around etc., so I’ve found that to be a much better “resume” than babysitting classes where you get no real experience.

edit: as for taking care of both a toddler and infant, it really depends on the time of day. I’ve babysat a lot for a lot of families, and you can’t base one experience off another. Every family and situation is different. Dinner time then bedtime could be a completely different experience from playing in the morning. I’m sure you are more than capable, just be responsible but still enjoy yourself! after all, babysitting is only a few hours, it isn’t like really raising a child. I hope all goes well, I loved when I babysat all the time! Just the fact that you are worried about it shows you are capable.

It sounds like you’ve proven you’re responsible and have a relationship with this family, so I think if I’d had someone babysit my first young child and all went well, I’d be open to having her watch my 2nd child as well. However, they may not be interested in going anywhere while the baby is still that young. I personally am very uncomfortable with the idea of leaving my baby with anyone, even my mom, when he’s only 2 months old, although a more experienced mom might not worry as much. Also, if she’s breast feeding, standard maternity leave is 3 months, so at 2 she may not have a pumping and bottle-feeding routine in place yet to be able to leave the baby.

So, at any rate, if she’s looking for someone to watch the kids at that point, I don’t see why she wouldn’t consider you for the job, but it’s possible she doesn’t need a sitter right now.

Thank you both for the responses!

Kungfualex - you make an excellent point! The grandparents are relatively close, I know, so I’m sure they would be the preferred caregivers. Obviously, it is over the [name]Christmas[/name] holiday, so I assume they will take their little ones wherever they go. However, I suppose I was wondering if I should even offer given my relative lack of experience with babies that young. Maybe they will have me over this coming summer!

When I was younger I babysat for a family of 4 that became a family of 5 during the time I was nannying for then. During the mom’s maternity leave I still watched the other kids & helped the mom with the newborn as well. This was kind of training I guess, helping us each get comfortable with me watching the newbie!

Maybe suggest a mother’s helper role for yourself? That way mom can get some help, gain trust, you can gain experience and the big sister could maybe get some outdoor playtime that her mom might not be able to allow right now with the infant. This way by the end of break she might feel like she could leave you all and take some time for herself!

That’s a good idea. You’d get to spend time with the older child you’re so fond of, get to know and see how to care for the new baby, and take some of the load off the mom.

Oh absolutely. The first time I babysat I was eleven and it was my neighbor’s 13 month old daughter. I babysat her until I was seventeen. When I was twelve she had another baby and I started babysitting the two-year old and three-month old. I babysat them together, until she was four, and he was two, and she had another baby girl. I was thirteen then. I was thirteen and took care of a four-year old girl, two year-old boy, and one month old girl. They ended up having another baby, a boy, when I was fifteen. They’ll definitely let you take care of them!
:slight_smile:
[name]Liz[/name] [name]Reece[/name]

Thank you all for the positive and encouraging messages! I have offered to be a mother’s helper before, but now it may actually be useful :slight_smile: I really just enjoy their family and would love to spend sometime with them. I always start missing the little ones I babysit when I am away!

I am not a parent, but I have watched infants since I was 12. Of course I don’t think this is the norm but I was one of the only babysitters where I lived ( on the campus of the school my mom was going to) and I had a newborn brother myself. So most people had seen me with my brother and trusted me with their infants. But back to you. If I were a parent and you ha already watched my daughter several times I would definitely let you watch both of my kids!