Babysitter? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 09-23-2010, 01:31 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm sure there have been a bajillion threads about this before, but long story short:

We have no family around and DH and I haven't been on a date (out of the house) in 20 months (since DS was born). We are the crunchiest, APest family known to man but I really wish we had a little extra support lately. Anything I choose to do that I can't do with DS around falls on my DH and equals less time for us to be together. i just had a miscarriage and am really craving a date night with my hubby. Anyway, so my first thought is to get an attachment parenting babysitter. I just can't help but worry about them not being the best, something bad happening and me never knowing about it, etc, etc, etc. DS is 19.5 months so he obviously couldn't tell us if things were happening that he didn't like. I don't know, I feel so torn. I've never left DS with anyone other than DH and I don't know ... I know what I want but not how I would know for sure that he would be safe. He's a really sensitive kid and i just can't picture, like, someone else changing his diaper and him feeling okay. There is a slight chance my younger sister may move in with us which would solve all problems as I trust her completely, but if that doesn't happen I don't know what to do and it is making me hesitant about getting pregnant again. IE I can't imagine having less time for myself than I do now.

Sorry if this is rambling/doesn't make sense.

Claire, book reading, tree loving, coffee drinking wife to K, and happy SAHM to ds G Feb '09 home birth, dd C ~ free birthed June '11, and now a new lil surprise due October 2012 joy.gif

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#2 of 9 Old 09-23-2010, 10:57 AM
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Do you have a close friend you could ask? Maybe someone who is a parent and holds the same parenting ideals that you do? I think for a first babysitting experience you'll do best with someone your ds already knows and likes. If you don't have any friends you can ask then maybe start with a couple of "mother's helper" sessions where you get in a babysitter to play with him while you're still at home (but doing something else). Once a bond has been forged then you'll feel comfortable leaving the house for a date night.

Also I wanted to say I'm very sorry to hear about your miscarriage. I've had a few myself and I know how hard it can be.

ETA an idea to network with other AP crunchy mamas where you live is to post in the finding your tribe area to see if anyone wants to meet up (or if there is a regular meet-up already going on).

ETA again... I've been the very first babysitter for a little girl just a bit younger than your ds. Her parents were in a similar situation (no family nearby, no other friends here that they trusted to watch her). They were super nervous to leave her with us, but it went very very well. She had a blast at our house, playing with my kids (and their toys). Didn't get sad at all. Her parents wished they had taken our babysitting offer earlier. By that point they were very much in need of some couple time.

Kate, mom to 7 year old Djuna and 4 yr old Alden. Missing our good friend Hal the cat who died June 2, 2010

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#3 of 9 Old 09-23-2010, 01:54 PM
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PP has lots of good ideas. First of all, I am sure your DS will be fine. I'm assuming that you'll ask some screening questions and are a reasonable judge of character, so I'm sure you will leave your DS with someone very capable. A 20mo with a babysitter for the first time can be a challenge, but you can ease the transition by letting him get to know the babysitter first etc. Even if your DS does cry, it is only one night. It is a couple of hours. If it is important for your sanity, do it. You need to look after your own needs and your marriage too. It is all about balance.

That said, you can work up to it. IME a 'night out' is the toughest for my kids to handle when they are babies. Maybe start with coffee or lunch at a time of day when your DS has napped and is fed and happy. Bedtime without mom would probably be the hardest thing! DH and I might go on a dinner date and come back in time to put DS to bed late, or occasionally I will sneak out for a drink with friends after DS is in bed (assuming the teething monster is not visiting )
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#4 of 9 Old 09-23-2010, 02:01 PM
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I am fairly crunchy so I also don't love getting sitters but taking care of yourself and your marraige help MAKE you a good mom. It isn't bad to need a break, it doesn't make you a bad mom.

Anyways, we don't have family in town either so we use a neighbor girl every once in a while. A couple things we have done is that we her them come over after she is in bed so she doesn't even know that we are gone. I do tell my DD that she is coming though so she isn't scared if she wakes up. Also, I have told the sitter that we would NEVER be mad at her if she called us and needed help or had questions. Also, I explained that we do not let her cry so again, we won't be mad if we get home at midnight and the baby is still awake. We have come home at midnight to her sitting on the couch with the baby and she has called us--we are cool with it and appreciate it.

Anyways, I know that bad things happen but really, they are very very rare. If you talk to some people maybe you can get referrals?

Good luck.
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#5 of 9 Old 09-23-2010, 04:15 PM
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I'll be honest and say that I personally wouldn't feel comfortable leaving my child with a babysitter until they are old enough to clearly verbalize.

The closest thing my DH and I have ever had to a private date was on two separate occasions that we let his mother watch our daughters while we ran to WalMart for less than 20 minutes. Not exactly quality bonding time... But I'd rather miss out on dates than have to worry about my children the whole time I was gone.

I hope you find a solution. I know the situation you're in sucks.

I'm me. In love with this guy. We're bringing up two girls: Big A (8) and Little A (3)

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#6 of 9 Old 09-23-2010, 11:31 PM
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My DD is 19.5 months and we just had our first date nite last week. It was AWESOME! Just 3 hours-had a nice dinner with friends and went to an art opening. It felt soooo good to be the old us for a few hours and I felt really refreshed the next day. I asked a girlfriend who has 2 older kids to watch her, got her down before we left but with my girlfriend there too. Dd woke up once but my girlfriend soothed her back to bed. It took 10 min and dd was snoozing away when we got home. If you have a mom you trust in your circle maybe you could offer to trade once a month? It is hard when you don't have family nearby I know. After thinking about it I realized my friend has btdt with two babies already and Dd was in loving, experienced hands.
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#7 of 9 Old 11-15-2012, 03:10 PM
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well, of course you need time for yourself. If u will be unhappy, your child will be unhappy too... children feels the mother's emotions. Its best when friends or family can recommend to you a good babysitter, if not you have to try find on websites like this one babysitter Stay one day with babysitter and watch her. Make sure she is easy to establish contact with the child and is responsible. Good babysitter costs a bit more. But its worth it.  

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#8 of 9 Old 11-16-2012, 08:56 PM
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I understnad feeling nervous about leaving your little one with someone you and they don't know! It sounds like you don't have any friends around you would feel good about having babysit? I still don't leave my ds who is 2 and a 1/2 with anyone other than family. Luckily my husband;s family lives nearby so they take him a ittle. And we just last week finally got someone to come play with ds while we are home for a couple of afternoons a weeks o dh and I can sort of have a moment to relax together. IA m still not comfortable leaving him alone with this babysitter I am just getting to know. so I say follow your heart. dont' do it if you don't want to- just wait longer if you want to! or try to find someone to come over when you and your husband are both home who can play with your kid so you can rest a little. or maybe you do feel comfortable finding a babysitter. Each of us has our own levels of various comforts so it is really your call, but I can relate to the feeling of not wanting to leave your baby/toddler alone with someone you don't reall yknow ( a babysitter) and in my case I would rather jus not do it than do it and feel nervous.


edited to add that before I actually had ds, even up throughout my pregnancy- I would regularly tell dh about how when the kid was born we would get a babysitter once a week and go out and be together. ha! Once ds came I just felt this protectiveness that makes me want to be near him. But it is also exhausting and I would love to have more alone time with my dh- so much! dh and I right now get little little time to relax together alone (without ds) because ds is with us so much and dh goes to bed early--



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#9 of 9 Old 11-20-2012, 07:48 AM
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What about hiring a sitter to be in the house with you for the first few times? Then your ds can get used to the sitter AND you can see how she relates to your son before leaving them alone together. I had our first sitter as a mother's helper for the first few weeks, and then once she had built a rapport with me and dd, I felt totally comfortable leaving them alone together. 

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