Author Topic: Babysitting defience  (Read 5613 times)

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snowdragon

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Babysitting defience
« on: March 28, 2013, 08:14:28 PM »
      My PT  was in dire straights tonight because her regular childcare went out of town - she knew this two weeks ago and had mentioned each time we got together that she might not be in this time because of it.  I told her last time that I could watch him, but that if I did we'd likely end up at my sister's playing video games with her kids. I was not too worried about it as we and the kids had gotten together a few times before for various outings.  The child was openly defiant, gave me a couple of lectures about things he did not like me doing in my own car ( like pulling into a parking lot to call my sister to let her know we were on the way) manipulative and lied straight to my face and openly defied me when I told him not to kick the car seat ( I again pulled into a parking lot and switched him over to the other side.) and when I told him not to eat in the car - he went ahead and did anyway ( he had been fed eggs and muffins that were his suggestion   not 15 minutes before and tossed about half in the  garbage, so hunger was not an issue).

   He even pitched a temper tantrum because I would not over ride the house rules and let him watch his favorite movie.  After my sister told him it was not allowed at her house, no sooner did she walk out of the room than he started with the crying and the "I told you to put it on."
      I did speak to the mother afterward - but I am wondering what parents would like a babysitter to do with behavior like this.  If it had been my niece or nephew it would be a different story as I could have either sent them to their rooms or something.  With this kid, because of the circumstances that mom was at work for a couple of hours, I could not even take him back to her til her last client left. All told I had had him for less than three hours - and all this happened in that short of a time, I expected better out of an 8 or 9 year old [ he's in 4th grade].
  Since several of my friends have kids of this age range - I am fairly sure I will be babysitting one of them again. What can a baby sitter do about behavior like this - other than putting up with it and telling the parents later.



gramma dishes

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2013, 08:20:26 PM »
I wouldn't make arrangements to babysit this kid again UNLESS you first laid some ground rules with the parent(s) in advance. 

"The last time I watched your son, he ..... (description of his behaviors).  I'm sorry, but I'm just not willing to take that on again." 

If she apologizes and reassures you that he will be quite seriously 'instructed' as to what's appropriate behavior beforehand and if he then follows through with better behavior, problem solved.  If it turns out to be a repeat, then "Sorry, that just won't be possible" comes to mind.

Bottlecaps

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2013, 08:25:54 PM »
All you really can do is ask the parents in advance how they prefer their child be disciplined in the event that they misbehave. Most parents will be happy to let you know how they prefer that you handle it. If I were a parent, I know that it would give me peace of mind knowing that my kid will be disciplined, should they need to be, in a fashion that is consistent with my own views on discipline.

As for this kid, POD to gramma dishes - lay some ground rules, and any subsequent requests to babysit should be dependent upon whether or not this kid followed said rules. Although to be honest, after this time, I personally would have a hard time agreeing to a second time to even give a second chance!
"Some of the most wonderful people are the ones who don't fit into boxes." -Tori Amos


snowdragon

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2013, 08:27:24 PM »
I won't take this kid again, ever.  Nor will he be invited on anymore outings with us, even if mom is attendance, a lot of that I would forgive, but the outright lying to my face will not have a chance to be repeated.

  But many kids try stuff like this with babysitters, I am hoping to have some tools to deal with it with other kids, other than waiting for the parents to handle it later.

gramma dishes

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2013, 08:31:05 PM »
I won't take this kid again, ever. 

LOL!!    :) :D ;D

Good for you!  I wouldn't either!  I wasn't sure by your original post whether your were willing to give him a second chance, but you've made it clear that is NOT your intention.  Again -- good decision! 

rose red

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2013, 08:31:18 PM »
Off-topic but what does "PT" stand for?

Bottlecaps

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2013, 08:31:52 PM »
I won't take this kid again, ever.  Nor will he be invited on anymore outings with us, even if mom is attendance, a lot of that I would forgive, but the outright lying to my face will not have a chance to be repeated.

Good on ya! :) I have to admit, I would have had a hard time keeping my cool in the car. My car, my rules - and don't even get me started on the lying!  >:(
"Some of the most wonderful people are the ones who don't fit into boxes." -Tori Amos


gramma dishes

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2013, 08:33:32 PM »
I would honestly hope that MOST kids don't act like this.  I don't know if we can give you specific suggestions because every child and every parent and every situation is different. 

One thing that you might make clear up front though is that you let the parents know you will NOT be tolerating back talk, open disobedience or insistence (from their kids) that you disobey traffic rules.

EmmaJ.

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2013, 10:23:56 PM »
Off-topic but what does "PT" stand for?

Thanks, I was just going to ask too!  I am terrible with figuring out abbreviations.

kherbert05

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2013, 11:02:47 PM »
I won't take this kid again, ever.  Nor will he be invited on anymore outings with us, even if mom is attendance, a lot of that I would forgive, but the outright lying to my face will not have a chance to be repeated.

  But many kids try stuff like this with babysitters, I am hoping to have some tools to deal with it with other kids, other than waiting for the parents to handle it later.
Good for you on the first part.

I disagree with you about the 2nd part.  They might try to pull something fudge the rules a little bit - but that level of attempted manipulation I have to have my may attitude is learned. I suspect that either parents or regular babysitter gives in regularly.
Don't Teach Them For Your Past. Teach Them For Their Future

Lynn2000

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2013, 12:11:51 AM »
I think Bottlecaps had a good suggestion, that you can ask the parents about disciplining their child when you make the babysitting arrangements--one of those standard questions along with dietary restrictions, naptimes, medical conditions, etc.. It doesn't mean you expect their child to misbehave, just that you want to be prepared for it.

And the other part of it is what rules you, as the babysitter, have, and what ways you've already thought of to discipline kids. For example, like you said when you were at your sister's house, you didn't really have a "room" you could send the kid to for a timeout. So maybe you have to think about a different place to put a child for a timeout, like a chair facing the corner in the kitchen, or a couch at the unused end of the living room. Since kids might be coming in from a variety of families with different rules, I think a warning on the first offense would be appropriate--"Simon, that is back-talk, and I don't allow back-talk. If you do that again to me, we will go straight home instead of getting ice cream." And then if he does it again--follow through on the consequence.

Most generally well-behaved kids will pick up on new rules quickly if you explain them, even if they're different from at home. The original kid sounds like a bit of an extreme.
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Paper Roses

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2013, 12:13:02 AM »
Off-topic but what does "PT" stand for?

Thanks, I was just going to ask too!  I am terrible with figuring out abbreviations.

I was wondering as well - I'm guessing Physical Therapist, since snowdragon has been dealing with the broken leg?
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*inviteseller

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2013, 12:40:25 AM »
I wouldn't babysit him anymore.  He is a bit old to be acting in the manner he did.  Maybe he likes to push buttons to see what he can get away with when mom is not around, maybe mom treats him like the most specialist snowflake, either way that kind of behavior is exhausting to deal with.  When I babysit, I always ask the parents what I should do if there is any acting up and I follow it (except the time the parent told me to give them a good smack!  ummm, no siree bob!)  But I meant it for fairly minor offenses...fighting with siblings, breaking basic house rules.  This kid you had seemed to just be plain and simple defiant. 

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2013, 01:16:42 AM »
The kid is 8 or 9?! From the description of his behaviour, he sounded about 4 years old! I agree with inviteseller - he is too old to be behaving like that.

I'd personally give his mum a brief run-down of his behaviour, so she's aware of what went on. Then I'd make a mental note never to babysit that kid again.

Softly Spoken

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Re: Babysitting defience
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2013, 01:51:32 AM »
Wow, this takes me back to my time as a nanny. Not that the kids I watched were little terrors, but the question of rules and how to enforce them.

I knew instinctively, even when I started taking my babysitter training course as a tween, that kids would go as far as you let them. I knew not to escalate, and to meet anger and boundary-pushing with calm-but-firm consequences.

When I watched a child, my first question to their parent after getting emergency phone numbers was "What are the rules and what happens if they break them?" I developed a rep among the parents as the 'fun' sitter who the children loved to play with...while among the children I was known as the 'strict' sitter who was even harder to mess with than their parents - and both reps were completely true. >:D

If I don't get any guidance from a parent, then it becomes a "I'm-in-charge-so-we-go-by-my-rules" situation. Misbehavior means lost privileges. If a child wants to do X, they must do Y first (i.e. say 'please' if they want something, or eat their vegetable before they can have dessert). Isolation, however temporary, is a very powerful tool. Consequences, consequences, consequences.

I remember when I got push-back about rules from kids, it always helped to offer to call their parents and clarify. If I didn't choose to allow them to do it, kids that were fond of playing the "my Mom always lets me" card got told "Well then you can ask her when she picks you up." >:D
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