Protecting the Gift - Ch. 7 - "Baby-sitters and Nannies" - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 03-17-2009, 01:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I hope I'm not out of turn starting a new chapter. I'm just eager to hear what people thought of it. It's about here that the book makes me a bit uncomfortable. De Becker makes a good case about whom we entrust our children to and that agencies don't have as much to lose as we do for not thoroughly screening a sitter. I see the reasoning for everything he suggests in this chapter, but I'd still feel uncomfortable asking every question he recommends asking on an interview, let alone doing a credit check. I've been fortunate to have had good luck with sitters. Am I the only one who feels weird about this? I guess it's because no one ever asked me these questions when I babysat when I was young.

I felt similarly when I read a future chapter about our kids in school. There's a huge list of questions there. I wonder, sometimes, if De Becker is making less a personal recommendation to parents than trying to start a movement - getting people aware of how important it is to make our kids safe so that more and more people will ask these questions of sitters and schools so that it will be normal for everyone to do it, thus changing the culture.

Sorry to go on and on. I've just been dying to discuss these chapters.

Oldermom

ETA: p.s. I'm forgetting this chapter is also about nannies. I've never hired a nanny.
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#2 of 6 Old 03-19-2009, 01:01 PM
 
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Originally Posted by oldermom View Post
I hope I'm not out of turn starting a new chapter. I'm just eager to hear what people thought of it. It's about here that the book makes me a bit uncomfortable. De Becker makes a good case about whom we entrust our children to and that agencies don't have as much to lose as we do for not thoroughly screening a sitter. I see the reasoning for everything he suggests in this chapter, but I'd still feel uncomfortable asking every question he recommends asking on an interview, let alone doing a credit check. I've been fortunate to have had good luck with sitters. Am I the only one who feels weird about this? I guess it's because no one ever asked me these questions when I babysat when I was young.

I felt similarly when I read a future chapter about our kids in school. There's a huge list of questions there. I wonder, sometimes, if De Becker is making less a personal recommendation to parents than trying to start a movement - getting people aware of how important it is to make our kids safe so that more and more people will ask these questions of sitters and schools so that it will be normal for everyone to do it, thus changing the culture.

Sorry to go on and on. I've just been dying to discuss these chapters.

Oldermom

ETA: p.s. I'm forgetting this chapter is also about nannies. I've never hired a nanny.
Isn't your uncomfortable feeling part of that "socialization" that Dr. Becker talks about in his book? You are uncomfortable about asking certain questions or doing a check on the potential employee b/c it seems offensive and over the top. In other words, you want to be nice?

I really liked his point on putting hidden cameras in the home.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#3 of 6 Old 03-20-2009, 12:27 AM
 
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I thought most of the questions weren't applicable for the typical teenage babysitter. I babysat a lot of kids over the years, starting when I was 11 & most of the questions wouldn't have applied. & if a parent had asked me them, I'd have thought they were nuts. Sorry, had to take the book back to the library or I'd give examples.

mom to all boys B: 08/01ribboncesarean.gif,  C: 07/05 uc.jpg, N: 03/09 uc.jpg, M: 01/12 uc.jpg and far too many lost onesintactlact.gifsaynovax.gif

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#4 of 6 Old 03-20-2009, 01:41 PM
 
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Thanks for starting a new thread!

Quote:
I thought most of the questions weren't applicable for the typical teenage babysitter.
They do seem more geared towards adults. Some of the things I ask our teenage babysitters are:

- How did your parents discipline you?
- What would you do if ds hit someone?
- What would you consider an emergency where you would need to call me?

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
13yo ds   10yo dd  8yo ds and 6yo ds and 1yo ds  
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#5 of 6 Old 03-29-2009, 09:22 PM
 
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We just went through an interview process for babysitters. What's on his list of questions to ask?

We feel really good about the woman we chose to babysit weekly. And she didn't balk when we asked for her license so we could make a copy of it
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#6 of 6 Old 04-10-2009, 09:32 AM
 
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We've never hired a babysitter, and frankly the thought of it terrifies me! I don't think I know anyone who would ask these types of questions, but they are good questions. I think they would definitely send a message to anyone who might even possibly consider harming a child, to realize that this family isn't going to be messed with. And maybe that's the point.

As far as school goes - this chapter made me think of something that is still bothering me. Before I had DS, I used to work for a preschool program. On field trips, it was common for the teachers to send groups of 3-4 students with each parent chaparone (and ANY parent could come, or grandparent, etc.), telling them what time to meet back with the group to go home. Some of these parents the teachers barely knew. And these were YOUNG children, 3-5 years old. I keep thinking about how easy it would be for something to happen on one of these field trips. And now that I have a child, if my child was ever handed over to another parent I didn't know, and allowed to be taken away from the group, to the bathroom, etc., I would be LIVID. Yet I wasn't a parent at the time, and thought nothing of it. And clearly the other teachers and parents never thought it was a problem either...

Amanda , mama to my two boys: N (10/06) and : A (7/09)
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