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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-26-2008, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Babysitter problems...

First off, let me apologize for the rambling nature of this post. Some of it's not in chronological order because I was just typing out gripes as they came to mind. I'm a bit frazzled right now!


As I've talked about earlier, we had the ND State Fair this past week with the last night being tonight.

The first night there was a concert we had our daycare lady's teenage daughter come over and watch the kids for us. The girl we normally get to watch the kids was also going to the concert so wasn't available.

When we came home the house was a mess! It was about 11:00 at night and the leftover food from supper was still sitting on the table, on the plates, a bag of pretzels was left sitting around wide open getting stale and the kids were not in the pajamas that had been pointed out to her to put on them. Nate was even in wintertime thermal underwear!

With the fact that we really like her mom for daycare we didn't want to "ruffle any feathers" as such and decided to give her one more try. She came over last night and watched the kids while we went to the third of 4 concerts.

We got home and the house was a complete mess, food sitting out all over, a brand new 2-liter bottle of pop almost gone so either she drank a ton or let the kids have some we she was specifically told NOT TO, etc. Ken took her home and I cleaned up the house. When he got back he said that she put in the "Wizard of Oz" movie for the kids, which is fine because they love it. However, we found some other things around the house that were blatant lies according to what she stood and told us right to our faces earlier.

Ken and I really began to question what she does when she's here with the kids so he decided to question them this morning as they got up. Nate was up first and so Ken took the opportunity to get his story without the influence of Emma around. Nate said how she watched Pirates of the Caribbean and they sat right there with her and watched the whole thing. He even told Ken at one point she covered their eyes! Nate went into detail about the things he saw in the movie so I trust his story. He also, by the way, denied that they got to watch "The Wizard of Oz."

Then Emma woke up and Ken found the opportunity to question her about what happened last night, went Nate wasn't around, and she gave the exact same story!

Furthermore, she was told about our dog and how she needs to go outside every couple of hours for potty, etc. When I asked her if Peanut had any accidents while we were gone, she said "I don't think so." I didn't like that answer because she should have known. But, I shrugged if off and waited until Ken got back from taking her home so we could talk about it.

I had also showed her an open can of dog food that was stored in the fridge and said that at about 8:00 Peanut could have what was left in the can. While putting leftovers away and cleaning the kitchen, I discovered that she hadn't given the dog ANY of it!

Then Ken gets home, walks through the living room and steps on something wet. He took his sock off to see if it was dog urine but instead smelled the stain and odor remover that we told her about in the event that Peanut did have an accident. This means she lied to my face about not thinking that Peanut had an accident. Instead, she chose to clean it up and not say anything about it. It doesn't bother me so much that she had the accident but the part about being flat out lied to about it is just wrong. In our bedroom we also found 2 separate clumps of dog doo-doo, so I really don't think Peanut was outside at all.

This is scary to me because this girl seems to be a seasoned liar! Her detailed accounts about what the kids supposedly had fun doing (a.k.a., watching The Wizard of Oz) rolled off her tongue like nothing. On top of all this, her mother is our daycare provider and up until now we had no questions about her care.

I'm beginning to wonder if our kids' daycare experience is as good as it has seemed to be in the last year and a half. They haven't really said anything alarming but I'm starting to wonder if anything is going on, simply because kids learn from what they see and our daycare lady has been doing this since before her daughter was even born. Maybe I'm just being a concerned parent, I don't know, but I really wonder about daycare now.

This town is so hard-up for daycare, too, so it's not like I have a quick backup option in case we leave this daycare. A HUGE employer in town just closed up their in-house daycare about a month ago so they could expand the business, leaving about 100 kids/parents scrambling for another daycare.

As a parent, you always hear about the nightmarish stories of babysitting gone bad but you never really think it will happen to you. All I know is that my trust is shot now, leaving me leerie of another babysitter, although the girl we normally get has never given us any cause for concern.

Anyone else have babysitter nightmares to share?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-26-2008, 02:00 PM
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While I understand you're now questioning the level of care from the mother because the daughter was so bad, remember that mothers and daughters aren't always the same.

I dearly love my daughter, but she is a pig at our house. Yet she manages to keep her apt spotless.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-26-2008, 03:00 PM
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It has been many years since I've babysat, and I had great families I watched for, so I never had any problems or they any problems with me.

IMO, if you ever use this girl again, I would tell her flat out at the begining what you will and will not accept. Let her know you were disappointed with the previous times she 'sat for you.
...just had a thought...
Make a LIST of what you want done. Kids fed. Kitchen picked up (not scrubbed and cleaned, but table cleared at least). Dog walked several times. Dog fed at certain time. Kids watch tv/movie (have one she would enjoy, too). Kids in jammies and then bed.
Most importantly, you will expect your house to be as neat as when you left it with no food gorged upon and strewn about.

Maybe tell her you will check that these items were done when you return home and will dock her pay for things not taken care of?

I suspect her Mother does a great job and she has to help out quite a bit. So, babysitting probably isn't such 'fun' for her since she has to help her Mother with it anyways so she slacks off when out from under her Mother's watchful eye. I would try to avoid using her unless she could be closely monitored or checked up upon when you return and before she is taken home.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-26-2008, 03:54 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mom of 4
While I understand you're now questioning the level of care from the mother because the daughter was so bad, remember that mothers and daughters aren't always the same.

I dearly love my daughter, but she is a pig at our house. Yet she manages to keep her apt spotless.
I do completely understand this. I'm just in a tizzy over everything we came home to, knowing that her mother runs a daycare. I have only seen the inside of their house once, the day we interviewed with her, and it was very clean. It wasn't emaculate, or anything, but neither is my house. I did notice that things were picked up and there wasn't food and such laying all over. Ken is the only one who has dropped the kids off and picked them up since.

The stupid thing about our dog, Peanut, was I didn't even ask her to walk her; just let her out to go potty every couple hours. We have a huge fenced in backyard and she's only 6 pounds or so, so she can get plenty of exercise out there.

Most of all, the thing that burns me is the lying. I cannot stand lying. She was dumb enough not to even cover her tracks with the lies either, which I guess played in our favor.

Another thing I thought of, too, regarding the issue of cleaning up after yourself....

The way I was raised by my parents I just knew if was entrusted to watch someone else's kids and stayed at their house I was to pick everything up after the kids and myself. That's something I always did without having to be told to by the parents. The leftover food was always put away and dishes were done. Honestly, it doesn't bother me that the dishes weren't washed; at least pick the darn things up and put them in the sink, though.

I've always been the type to find out what kind of pop the babysitter likes to drink and a couple of snacks they like so I can have those in the house for them, so the fact that she snacked a lot doesn't matter; it just goes back to not putting things away and leaving bags wide open so things get stale.

She was also here during the supper hour so she had to feed the kids. We left $$ on the countertop to order a pizza and pop to have delivered. It's not like I didn't expect her to eat anything while here; just clean it up.

And as far as watching Pirates of the Caribbean... I wouldn't have cared if she watched it by herself AFTER the kids had gone to sleep but don't let them sit right there with you and cover their eyes on the bad parts! Nate fully described that happening without being prompted in any way.

At any rate, she won't be trusted with our kids again, at least not for a long time. The girl we usually get to watch our kids is wonderful; a lot like I expect out of a babysitter and she has NEVER had to be told what is expected out of her.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-26-2008, 05:39 PM
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Not ever had to babysit anyone myself (thank god, I generally hate kids), but I'm young enough (just) to remember some real wonders (and some real fools). A chinese student who barely spoke any English, and what he could say was unintelligible, was the most caring, level-headed bloke I've ever known.
At the age of 4 I wanted to blow the candles out from dinner (which he had cooked), and I managed to get candle wax right down my arm. without a single hesitation, he stuck it under cold water and phoned my GP. He's still a great family friend, and my parents would have NO qualms about leaving him with us. He once took me and my bro to the local zoo, and refused to allow my parents to pay him back after what was a very expensive day out

However, on the flip side, some random lady my mum knew came over once, and refused to do anything. Me and my bro were 10 and 11 (so not exactly babies), but sent us both to bed at 7pm (half an hour after my parents left). She was basically a *&^$%. When I sneaked down at 8ish to get a glass of water, I caught her smoking, and drinking my dad's whiskey. She screamed at me so loud, she brought the neighbours round. She then threatened to phone the police because they were "trespassing".
At first my parents didn't believe us, but she actually seemed proud that she was a total fruitcake.

2 key things about them.
1) Do you trust them?
2) Do your kids like them?
If yes to both, then they're good. If no to EITHER then find someone else.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-27-2008, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by samuscat
i personally would have docked her pay, or not paid her at all. maybe you can talk to her mom about what happened? she needs some sort of repercussion for this... IMHO
I do wish now that I thought fast enough to dock pay but I definitely know better now.

As for talking with her mom, Ken did call her this morning explaining about the food all over, which she apparently lied to her mother about as well. The mom said she asked her "so did you put the food away?, blah, blah, blah" and she replied "yes." Now we know she lies to her mom too. Ken also told the mom about letting the kids sit there while she watched Pirates Of The Caribbean. Ken told me the mom was not pleased with that at all.

She said her daughter was not home at that particular time and that she would talk to her when she did get home. In the late afternoon we headed off to the ND State Fair for the last concert and just got back about 45 minutes ago. I'm hoping (probably foolishly) that we get a call back from either the mom or the daughter apologizing for the behavior. I would think it would be in the mom's best interest since we are one of her daycare clients.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-27-2008, 01:06 AM
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NEVER let her into your home again....

I would also write a letter to her Mom if you are uncomfortable
telling her about this.
*ETA: Sorry I see you already talked with her parent.

I have a babysitting Nightmare story....
Both my X and I ended up having to both work a Sunday shift.

Our son had never been with a sitter prior, (other then family)
My son was on Augmentin for an ear infection.
This med gives babies the runny poo's....

When I got home from work I found my 10 month old son
sleeping on the kitchen floor and had not had his diaper
changed in over 6 hours, which was the same diaper I left him in.

I paid her before I realized about the diaper,
her father came to pick her up.

I was very upset to find him sleeping on the hard floor,
but was still giving her the benefit of the doubt, since he had never been
with anyone before.

My sons behind was TOTALLY BLOODY!
The poop and the blood had dried crusty hard, more then 1
poop before I returned home.

I called her parents and I was LIVID!

I never leave my children with sitters!!!

That was it for me! I am a 100% stay at home MOM.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-27-2008, 01:58 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BoscosMum
I never leave my children with sitters!!! That was it for me! I am a 100% stay at home MOM.
Wow Dawn! Sorry you had to go through that experience (and obviously your son). I'm really thankful nothing that horrid happened with mine. I'll be very honest and admit right I'm in no way equipped emotionally and mentally to be with the kids 24-7, never getting a babysitter. I'd go completely bonkers after a while.

I remember a few babysitters I had while growing up and I can recall only one babysitter who wasn't good and she even happened to be related to me. Her mom and my dad are first cousins.

As soon as my parents left she got on the phone with her boyfriend. She talked the majority of the time she was with me and my brother, who was in diapers at the time. I, however, was about 9 and I remember completely spilling the whole sordid story to mom when they got home. Needless to say, she never babysat again. All the rest of the babysitters I remember having were great.

I guess I'm of the opinion that I can't let one bad apple spoil the entire bunch. As I mentioned in an earlier post, the babysitter we normally get (who was not available to 'sit during these concerts) is great, too! I have never questioned anything she's ever said or done and she's been sitting for us off and on for the last approximately 1-1/2 years. The kids really love her and that's also a comfort to me.
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