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Would you let a 13yo boy babysit? - Page 2

post #21 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by MsElle07 View Post
Females are actually statistically far less likely to abuse. Operating under your assumption, if both boys and girls are likely to abuse, then we shouldn't be leaving our children with anyone.
I'm curious...what assumption am I making here exactly? I believe my post cautioned against the use of assuming that all males are predators, and that you should get to know, get references, and see for yourself before deciding if this boy will be able to provide babysitting service. I give out advice all the time regarding childcare, to parents who ask me since they know I spent many years in early childhood centres before having my daughter and have always told them to research and go by gut feelings. At no point in my post did I say that you should assume that everyone else is a predator and that you should not leave your child with anyone.
post #22 of 343
I've used 13 year olds as babysitters, but they have been all girls. I think that at that age, girls are more mature than boys are. I have used older boy sitters, they were about 16/17 years old. I was completely comfortable with it and they did a great job.
post #23 of 343
I think it depends on the babysitter and the age of the one being babysat. Dh's has a friend who offered to have their 13 year old son babysit DD when she was about 9 months old (I can't remember for sure). Anyhow, I said absolutely not. He knew NOTHING about infant care. He expressed an interest in babysitting, he had apparently watched older kids before, and he got along well with DD. It didn't feel right and I said no. I felt bad for a bit but what it came down to was feeling secure with who was watching DD...regardless of gender. It didn't feel right and I didn't feel secure with it.
post #24 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by oceanbaby View Post
I was asking around our hs group for recommendations for older teenagers who may be interested in babysitting. I heard back from a mom who used to hs her son, but he is in school now. He is 13, and has expressed an interest in babysitting. And, they live only a few blocks away. I have never met them though.
I'd only hesitate on not know him. Maybe have him over a few times, while you're home, even for a half hour to an hour. Say just so he can get to know the kids. But really just get to know him. Then go with your gut and mama-intuition.

My brother and sister and I used to have a male babysitter. He was about 13 or 14. He was fantastic. We preferred him to all the girl babysitters anytime. He actually played with us instead of watching TV the whole time. When our pet cat died, he came over and did a funeral for us. Just a neat kid. I never felt he was immature or inappropriate, in fact it was nice to see a male positive role model at a teens age.
post #25 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by lesley&grace View Post
Not every male is a predator and teenage boys are not predators-in-training. I do not think that is a fair assessment, and females are also likely to abuse.
Statistically males are *much* more likely to sexually abuse. No, I would not leave my child with a male babysitter, with the exception of one or two men I trust. But generally, no. I'm sorry to say it, but it's the sad reality.

When men stop raping women and children, I will reconsider my position.
post #26 of 343
While staying at friend's houses growing up, I saw some really mean and nasty female babysitters. There are some messed up women out there, too.

I think, IMO, we have to go off of getting to know an individual, not pre-judging gender. We don't not marry men just because they are more likely to have an affair. (ok, well some don't ) We get to know the individual. I'd hate to be judged by only my gender, with nothing of getting to know ME as a person, who I am, what I'm about, what I believe and stand for, my interests, strengths, weaknesses...

I'd never leave my kids with anyone I didn't know these things about male or female.
post #27 of 343
ITA about getting to know the individual. There are very few people in this world who I would trust my child with. There is one grown man I leave her with apart from her father, and maybe four women. I'm pretty damn picky.

But certainly with men and boys, sexual abuse is a very real concern I have when considering a potential caregiver. I always think, "Would this person sexually abuse my daughter?" Which is a sad thing to have to consider.
post #28 of 343
For the record, my ex was sexually abused by his female babysitter. It does happen.

My real contribution to this conversation is that I would feel a lot better if the babysitter's mom was home and open to her son calling her if something should come up. And the mother's helper thing. I would trust your instincts about the boy, but what do I know, I don't let anyone babysit DD.
post #29 of 343
Look, I totally understand the instinct to say "no" to a male caregiver. I do understand the statistics, and having been touched inappropriately by the husband of my caregiver as a child I do understand the urge to say "I will protect my children by only choosing female caregivers." But as a mother to a son, a sister to two wonderful teenaged boys, as a co-worker who saw a fantastic male counterpart eventually give up his dream to work with young children because of attitudes just like that, it is heartbreaking. Being male should never exclude you from being a caregiver, anymore than being female should exclude you from construction work.

I hope dearly that none of your sons have to suffer from opinons like these.
post #30 of 343
I'm not surprised at the way men (and young boys) are assumed to be predators here, but I am always saddened when I see it here.

Quote:
Don't we want to raise our boys to be nurterers? Don't we want them to have concrete experiences in caring for young children? But if we tell them, subtly or explicitly, that we don't trust them to be alone with young kids, or we don't trust their abilities (but would trust a girl in the exact same circumstances), then how can we realistically expect them to assume involved fathering roles later in life?
Yes, is this really the message we want to send to our boys? I don't have a son, but the amount of predjudice I see towards men and boys in general is really really sad.

I had a male babysitter sometimes when I was growing up and he was great. Very different than my female sitters. I would defineately want to know someone that was watching my child, regardless of gender.
post #31 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
I'm not surprised at the way men (and young boys) are assumed to be predators here, but I am always saddened when I see it here.

Yes, is this really the message we want to send to our boys? I don't have a son, but the amount of predjudice I see towards men and boys in general is really really sad.
I know. Being judged by gender alone, sight unseen, personality unknown. Or assuming that women are better, superior, or of more value in a section of society. Sexism.
post #32 of 343
There are opinions and assumptions, and then there are statistical realities. Yes, it's sad, but I'm not going to risk my daughter because I wish it weren't so or I want to make things nice for boys.

Most of my lovers and most of my women friends have been sexually abused. Many are damaged sexually by it for life. I do not want that for my child and I will be god d*mned if I'm not going to do everything I can to protect my daughter from it.
post #33 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
There are opinions and assumptions, and then there are statistical realities. Yes, it's sad, but I'm not going to risk my daughter because I wish it weren't so or I want to make things nice for boys.

Most of my lovers and most of my women friends have been sexually abused. Many are damaged sexually by it for life. I do not want that for my child and I will be god d*mned if I'm not going to do everything I can to protect my daughter from it.
The thing is that my husband was a boy abused by a woman. There are tons that he has met in the bit has spoke up, but they don't speak up. If they did, the statistics would be vary revealing. But abused males do not speak up, near as much, and that is also a statistic. And yup, it damages for life. I know. And I'll be "god d*mned" if people assume my boys are predators, just because they were born a boy. :

This all just breaks my heart. Why can't we judge people by who they are, just by getting to know them? Instead of just never giving them a chance because we looked at some stats? I never suggested anyone risk their child male or female, with a male or female. I just advocate getting to know someone first before judging them by their gender.

I married to a man that was a boy abused by women, and I saw plenty of mean and wicked girl babysitters growing up. I don't need the stats, I lived it.
post #34 of 343
Yes, I know women abuse men, and I know silence is a factor. But even so I don't believe it is to nearly the same degree, nowhere near. That is my belief, in my gut, and I go with my gut a lot in parenting.

I don't blindly trust women with my child just because they are women. And I don't 'assume' anything about your boy because he is a boy. However, I am aware of the statistical reality in our society and I make decisions that incorporate this knowledge.
post #35 of 343
I understand that mamas of boys feel protective. It's interesting though that so many here are taking the position that it is as or more important that their boys not be assumed about based on their gender, than it is that my child not be sexually assaulted.

That to me is the mark of a misogynist culture.
post #36 of 343
thismama...just a note to you, I wasn't replying to you directly. I just noticed it looked that way.

We all just want what is best for our children. The world is scary and we love our precious children. Too many are getting hurt in ways they should never know and we feel frightened and worried. We love our kids and want to protect them. I think we can all agree on that. And although I disagree with not getting to know someone just because he's a boy, I would never want another mama to do something that went against her mama-intuition. We gotta feel safe with our choices.
post #37 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by Live4Today View Post
thismama...just a note to you, I wasn't replying to you directly. I just noticed it looked that way.

We all just want what is best for our children. The world is scary and we love our precious children. Too many are getting hurt in ways they should never know and we feel frightened and worried. We love our kids and want to protect them. I think we can all agree on that. And although I disagree with not getting to know someone just because he's a boy, I would never want another mama to do something that went against her mama-intuition. We gotta feel safe with our choices.
Yes, ITA. And I'm not saying I wouldn't get to know someone just because he is a boy. I do leave my daughter with one adult male caregiver, apart from her father.

It's just sadly something I do think about when I consider potential male (and to a much lesser degree, female) caregivers for my child. With the man who does care for her occasionally, I first had to sit down and ask myself whether in my gut I feel he would ever abuse her.

Sad reality, really heartbreaking.
post #38 of 343
So is it a matter of picking one abuse over the other? Cause as another poster pointed out females are more likely to physically abuse children in their care while men sexually abuse. And because more owmen care for children physical abuse is more prevalent. I know far more people who were abused by their female caregiver (babysitter, mother, grandmother etc) than I know were sexually abused and I spent 10 years working as a rape crisis counsellor. Is it OK to only choose female caregivers knowing this? We had a bunch of sitters growing up and two (both female, late teens) were very physically abusive. None of the males sitters were physically or sexually abusive.

I go on the sitter and my gut.

DS has a male sitter and a female sitter, both started at 13. We've had both now for 4 years. DS loves different things about them. He loves that with the male sitter he has someone who appreciates his energy. And I love that my son is learning first hand that women aren't the only care givers in the world.
post #39 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
Not as many as you might think. The number of children that one predator can molest in a lifetime can be astonishingly high.
Good point.

However, I still don't buy the statistic that one in three girls were molested as children.
post #40 of 343
I think this thread is andronistic, pathetic and sad

I do not believe we should be PREJUDGING ANYONE based on GENDER. It is WRONG.

And yes, I have read Protecting the Gift, as well as The Gift of Fear.
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