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Would you let a 13yo boy babysit? - Page 16

post #301 of 343
Wow. This thread. holy cats I bet the OP had no idea the can of worms...Should a 13 year old boy babysit. Huh. When you send a kid to camp, there are helpers there who are likely about that age doing scout activities, etc. There are helpers at school who are about that age doing tutoring. There are also statistics that are so misleading and fear-inducing it makes me want to throw out the TV. (wait, I did that). We can find some numbers to back up anything we want to. I can find some numbers that say how many Christian people are perpetrators, and use that against all potential Christian caregivers. It could go on and on. I think it's very important to use the heebie jeebie hair-raising instinct we are all born with, if it's still intact. For those who were abused, and haven't regained their jeebie alerts, they really should be the ones who are more astute about caregivers and people who are around their children. And yes, there should be a bit of fear for them--the radar is broken! I would feel fine with my children being with anyone that I felt comfortable with, and I would also hope that by the time I have to worry about 13 year old sitters my kids have good sets of lungs and kick hard -- since they will be well-innoculated with safety concerns and how to keep themselves out of danger--my own little "gift of fear"--here'e how the heebiejeebie alert works, kids.
post #302 of 343
Wouldn't that be nice- if it was that easy.
But its not.
1 in 3 girls in this country is molested. SOMEONE is molesting them and it is not always because they do not know how to kick......
When people say things like this it touches on victim blaming.
I will raise my kids strong enough this won't happen to them. NO. NO. NO.
That is not an absolute. Predators are just that- predators.
Emilie
post #303 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaKat View Post
What minute percentage of males are child abusers? And yet you paint all men with the same brush? Fully half of the earth's population? I find this attitude troubling.

I also am curious about your statistic of 1 in 3 girls being victims of sexual abuse. Can you provide a link? I know several women who were unfortunate victims of sexual abuse as children, but I find it difficult to believe that 1 in 3 girls are. That would mean an astonishing number of child abusers out there. I just don't believe that is accurate.

Yes, it is horrible that people prey on children sexually. Yes, we need to do what we can to protect our children. I don't wear blinders regarding the dangers out there. But starting out assuming that everybody is a sexual predator is just perpetrating a culture of fear, IMO.
:
post #304 of 343
http://www.childmolestationvictim.com/prevention.html

I found this interesting.
The list of who the abusers are.
post #305 of 343
http://www.rainn.org/statistics/inde...CFQS1IgodnDPEv

One in 6 is I guess.
I don't know where the 3 came in- but still startling.
ANd THAT Figure I believe is skued due to underreporting.
Emilie
post #306 of 343
http://www.rainn.org/what-should-i-do/index.html

This is interesting also and has lots of links.
post #307 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emilie View Post
Wouldn't that be nice- if it was that easy.
But its not.
1 in 3 girls in this country is molested. SOMEONE is molesting them and it is not always because they do not know how to kick......
When people say things like this it touches on victim blaming.
I feel that the best thing I can do to protect my kids isn't keeping them away from people, but teaching them what's appropriate and what isn't, and teaching them to trust their instincts. I think teaching them that they don't have to hug grandma or kiss their uncle if they don't want to is more valuable than all the reference checks in the world. I also believe that if I hadn't received some of the sick messages from my grandmother that I did, I wouldn't have ended up being abused and keeping my mouth shut. I'm not blaming myself when I say that. I'm not blaming the victim when I say that educating the kids and teaching them to trust themselves is important. I don't get how you think that's blaming the victim in any way. If a child is taught that they have no right to say no - "you have to kiss grandpa" when the kid is crying because they don't want to - and said child ends up getting abused - maybe by the same person that they didn't want to kiss...then the child is blameless, but the person who taught them that they have no rights to their own body is not.
post #308 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emilie View Post
1 in 3 girls in this country is molested. SOMEONE is molesting them and it is not always because they do not know how to kick......
This is a stat that is misused really often. The original is a World Health Organization figure for female children world-wide who are abused because they are women. If you look at what they counted, you will quickly realize that many things your daughter doesn't have to worry about that is included in that stat (at least I hope these aren't issues in your life): female circumcision/genital mutilation, beatings because they are girls who aren't behaving as proper girls should (visualize muslim countries), rape in refugee camps ... plus the molestation that we western types tend to think of first. So its really not a very useful stat for us. Though it is absolutely horrid to realize how many young women are victimized around the world -- I don't mean to belittle or minimize the tragedy this speaks of, only to suggest that its not the correct stat to use in make these sorts of decisions.
post #309 of 343
Just dropping by in passing to say that I can see validation in several of the (supposedly opposing) points of view represented here.

My brother and I were babysat as preschoolers by several 12- and 13-year-olds. NONE of them, looking back, should ever have been left in charge of young children. They were simply too immature for that kind of responsibility, and we were NOT appropriately cared for by any of them.

The only MALE babysitter of that lot (13 years old) sexually abused both my brother and me.

There ARE at least two young male teens today that I WOULD trust to babysit my children. Both are exceptionally mature with babysitter training, and both have toddler or preschooler siblings and seem to have an accompanying automatic protective instinct around little ones.

I was never taught that I had the right to define and enforce personal boundaries around being touched by others, particularly my elders. I feel strongly that it would have helped me, not only with the above betrayal but through the years as a schoolgirl and a teen during other situations when my boundaries were crossed in ways that made me intensely uncomfortable.

Whatever other decisions I make---on an individual basis---about whom I trust to watch over my children, I am making sure my kids have strong personal boundaries.

Just my two pence!
post #310 of 343
Thread Starter 
Wow, I feel oddly proud to have started one of those threads that just won't die!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
I feel that the best thing I can do to protect my kids isn't keeping them away from people, but teaching them what's appropriate and what isn't, and teaching them to trust their instincts. I think teaching them that they don't have to hug grandma or kiss their uncle if they don't want to is more valuable than all the reference checks in the world. I also believe that if I hadn't received some of the sick messages from my grandmother that I did, I wouldn't have ended up being abused and keeping my mouth shut. I'm not blaming myself when I say that. I'm not blaming the victim when I say that educating the kids and teaching them to trust themselves is important. I don't get how you think that's blaming the victim in any way. If a child is taught that they have no right to say no - "you have to kiss grandpa" when the kid is crying because they don't want to - and said child ends up getting abused - maybe by the same person that they didn't want to kiss...then the child is blameless, but the person who taught them that they have no rights to their own body is not.
Exactly. I got into a tense situation with my SIL one time over this. An older (as in 40's/50's) was visiting from another country. Ds was about 2.5yo, and had never met him before. Ds at that age was a bit aloof with strangers, so this cousin was making a big deal about how he was going to make ds like him. I just kind of ignored it, but kept close by - not because I thought he was going to molest ds, but just because I felt like he was treating ds like a little puppy dog instead of a person, and ds wasn't talking yet. So at one point they were playing ball, and the cousin decided not to throw the ball back, and said to ds "If you want the ball back, you have to come give me a kiss." From my perspective, the whole planet stopped spinning. I was horrified someone would say that to a young child. I looked around at every single family member who was sitting right there, and no one seemed the least bit perturbed, while I meanwhile was having some bizarre out of body experience. Ds just looked at me, and in no way wanted to go give that guy a kiss. I turned to ds said "you don't have to give him a kiss to get your ball back, I'll go get it" and I walked over the cousin while saying this. I said it in what I hoped was a casual tone since the entire family was watching me, but inside I was freaked. Later SIL and I were talking about it, and I mentioned how I really didn't like it. She thought I was overreacting, and said that it's important to her to teach her dd to respect adults. I told her that I am all about ds being a respectful person, but that doesn't mean doing whatever someone else tells him to do, especially when it comes to his body. She looked at me like I was crazy and told me we'd just to go agree to disagree. I was floored.

Anyhow, I was raised to trust my instincts and have choice and power over whom I interacted with. (hmm, that's a grammatically awkward sentence) I hope to do the same for my children. Oddly, I'm not as bold about this as my parents were, and sometimes feel like I don't stand up enough for my kids. In fact, there is another thread along these lines that I think I want to start, because I'd love to discuss it further.
post #311 of 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by oceanbaby View Post
She thought I was overreacting, and said that it's important to her to teach her dd to respect adults. I told her that I am all about ds being a respectful person, but that doesn't mean doing whatever someone else tells him to do, especially when it comes to his body. She looked at me like I was crazy and told me we'd just to go agree to disagree. I was floored.
How on earth is giving someone a kiss when you don't want to, in order to "earn" back a toy, showing respect?? What would she have said if the older cousin had said, "in order to get this money, you have to give me a kiss"?

Gross, yuck, disgusting. Why do people think it's okay to try to coax and bribe kisses out of children? If the kiss isn't a sign of open, honest, spontaneous affection, why do they even want it??
post #312 of 343
As someone who was sexually abused by a female non-family member, to be honest I feel most comfortable with younger teens that our family can work with over a long period of time (I like to start out with mother's helpers, and as they prove trustworthy, work up to short babysitting gigs), and don't really care about gender so much as interest and a good match. I cannot ease my mind by just eliminating males from the pool.

For one thing, it ensures that ethically and legally I NEED to be present when they start out (maybe not always in the same room, but always available), and I have an opportunity for teaching/influencing how they behave (as opposed to a twentysomething/college student who isn't really willing to listen and who has more solid ideas about how things should go--not that that's bad, but it take more up-front work and time than I have to invest, honestly).

I do feel bad for my boys sometimes. They're growing up with a strong male role model of nuturing/direct care for children, since my husband is also a SAHP. I have seen some of the looks that my DH gets when he's out in public with the kids, and it does hurt to know that my boys will likely get the same. OTOH, I plan on teaching all my kids that there is a price to be paid very often for bucking the 'rules' of society, but that very often it's worthwhile.

Sometimes I get very frustrated with the concept that we DO want to raise our sons to be nuturing, sensitive, and respectful men--while at the same time blatantly saying that they should just put up and shut up while we treat them all like inevitable predators.
post #313 of 343
i wouldn't let anyone under 15 babysit...too much can happen
post #314 of 343
I don't think I would let a 13 year old boy babysit. Boys are not known for being gentle and plus I would be worried about his age and his gender. In fact, I don't even know if I would allow anyone to babysit. I know from my experience when I was little and frankly, I don't trust anyone but myself or my husband to take care of and watch my children.
post #315 of 343
I haven't read all the responses.

I wouldn't hire a 13 year old to babysit for more than an hour or so and only if they were a family friend whom I knew well.

I would not hire a male caregiver no matter what. I'm not willing to take that risk in the interest of fairness.
post #316 of 343
Definately not....remember when you were 13....remember how the boys were at that age.
post #317 of 343
I don't think 13 is old enough anyway, but to answer your question, most likely No, unless I knew him extremely well. I am the mother of sons, so it's not my intention to assume all boys are molesters. But ime, many people don't raise their sons the way I'm sure many here are. I've heard too many stories of boys (who are now likely normal grown ups) molesting friends, acquaintances, neighbors. I think it is a far more common thing thans grown men who are pedophiles and who definitely know it is morally wrong and do it anyway. I think there's a lot of entitlement among young boys who might not fully realize what molestation is. Reading the Gift of Fear kind of confirmed that for me. Anyway, that's my opinion.
post #318 of 343
(I read only the OP)

i would NOT leave my children now or ever with a male babysitter.

but that is MY hangup and I am aware of that.

I also would not leave my kids with a 13 y/o. I think 16 is my age limit.

my neice is 17 and she regularly babysits for me.
post #319 of 343
Yes, I would leave my kids with a 13-year-old babysitter, male or female.

However, I would need to know the babysitter and his/her family fairly well.
post #320 of 343
I was molested by a male babysitter.

And my brother was mistreated by a female one.

I'd probably use a male babysitter.

Because I can tell you this for sure. The signs were there, if only my mother had not ignored and dismissed them. And there is the rub.

Too assume that my nephews would molest my children because they are boys is horredous. To ignore potential warning signs from a caregiver, because I REALLY want to go out or get going is also horrendous.

People put the responsibility not on themselves. So instead of using their minds, they cast an entire gender as unfit.
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