Thursday, August 9, 2012


I recently unknowing volunteered myself to babysit regularly for FREE.

I find myself in a hard place.  I feel selfish for thinking I should be compinsated some how for the 3.5 hours per week I watch a 4 1/2 and an almost two year old.  But at the same time the time is a time when my kids would normally be taking naps so it is a lot more work than I'm used to.

When I was going to school I always felt so grateful to people when they would watch my kids for me and felt like they deserved to be paid.  Honestly they deserved to be paid more than I gave them, but still I did pay them. 

When I started watching my friends kids she messaged me via Facebook and asked if I knew anyone that could watch her kids one day a week for a few hours between they time her husband goes to work, and she gets home from work.  She said she could pay.  I volunteered, thinking sweet now I'll be able to put the money towards an awesome swing set I've had my eye on, but have never received payment.  I guess could pay doesn't mean she would pay.  I'll have to make that more clear in the future. 

I feel like I'm in a hard place because I'm her visiting teacher (however her husband is our home teacher) and feel like I should be willing to serve her, but at the same time I don't want to become the free sitter in the neighborhood.  I don't mind watching someones kids for a few hours every now and then, but when it is weekly I think that deserves some sort of compensation,

I tried to call her to take my kids (I only gave her about 2 hours notice) for a few hours while Troy and I go do something, but she said she already had plans so no luck there.  I'll have to try again when I'm able to give her more notice.

Recently another person in the neighborhood approached me about watching her 2 1/2 year old for 1-2 days per week.   I told her I could do it and hopefully made it clear that I plan on getting paid for it.  When I start watching her little boy I'm going to approach the other person and say that I recently starting watching another little boy and to keep things fair and to prevent being the dumping grounds for kids if she wants me to continue watching her kids she need to start paying either by taking my kids one night a week so we can go out or with cold hard $$$.

Why do people think they should pay when other people watch their kids on a regular basis?  What are your feeling about this (and telling me I'm out of line for wanting payment is perfectly ok)?


Nova said...

I had a lot of people that thought because I was home when they needed a babysitter, they could just dump their kids on me. I finally had to say no all together. I was being paid to watch a few of the kids but it wasn't worth my time because I didn't get to do as much with my kids. I think that you should just say no or say how much you are going to charge per hour and when you expect it to be paid. Good luck!!

Alison Hixson said...

I agree with Nova. I've helped a family out for a few years now and they have always paid me. I can't imagine doing it free of charge. It is too hard, especially if your kids are usually down at that time. It's not fair to you. I think if you don't speak up and say something then you will become bitter and resentful. Especially, if she isn't willing to ever take your kids. Good luck. I hope you can get what you deserve and that is to be paid!!!