Would You Hire A Male Babysitter?

By: aurays
March 18th, 2015
7:42 pm

Would You Hire A Male Babysitter?

There is still a lot of people who have a hard time when it comes to this topic. Is it fair that male and female babysitters are not treated equally? Are there any differences in the way they work?

I'm interested in hearing experiences, opinions and suggestions any of you have.

Join the Discussion!

22 comments on "Would You Hire A Male Babysitter?"

  • cybele
    March 19, 2015 at 1:49 am

    My kids have had male babysitters, female babysitters and one very notable drag queen babysitter, technically they started off that night with a male babysitter and ended with a female who taught them how to do make up.

  • artmom
    March 19, 2015 at 3:21 am

    If it's not a male babysitter then it's her unannounced boyfriend.
    But I always seemed to get female babysitters, who's moms come over and berate me for not paying the provincial minimum wage standard.
    When I was babysitting, I just took whatever it was the parent's could afford. Sometimes it was $10 for a few hours and other times it was $30. Once, I was paid $50 and that made me happy.
    I'm so glad I don't have to worry about babysitters anymore.

  • TabascoNatalie
    March 19, 2015 at 4:02 am

    I had an old man looking after me when i was little. He was my grandmother's neighbour. When my grandmother would come back -- i'd say --- look, your neighbour is in here reading a newspaper!
    (I didn't realise he was looking after me, i thought he came to read newspapers)

  • akmom
    March 19, 2015 at 4:12 pm

    Originally Posted by
    Would you hire a male babysitter?
    Nope.

    Originally Posted by
    Is it fair that male and female babysitters are not treated equally?
    Don't care.

    I'm not compromising my kids' safety to make some statement.

    Originally Posted by
    If it's not a male babysitter then it's her unannounced boyfriend.
    That too.

    Originally Posted by
    But I always seemed to get female babysitters, who's moms come over and berate me for not paying the provincial minimum wage standard.
    Were they babysitting for charity, or for pay?

  • cybele
    March 19, 2015 at 4:20 pm

    Originally Posted by akmom
    I'm not compromising my kids' safety to make some statement.
    That's an odd comment. There is seriously no male in your life who you think is capable of taking care of your kids for a couple of hours without jeopardising their safety?

  • akmom
    March 19, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    "Babysitter" implies adolescents, to me anyway. So nope.

  • cybele
    March 19, 2015 at 4:31 pm

    Ahh. Babysitter to me means anyone who comes and takes care of your kids.

  • akmom
    March 19, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    That would be Grandpa. And he's okay

  • aurays
    March 19, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    Interesting! I meant it more for babysitters that you pay for, as workers. But, of course, many times a friend of the family takes care of the kids.

    Also, when I was small my grandparents took care of me. And I'm wondering, since more people use family to take care of their children on a regular basis, how do you "pay" them for their work when it's every day that they take of the kids?

  • artmom
    March 19, 2015 at 9:37 pm

    Originally Posted by akmom
    Were they babysitting for charity, or for pay?
    The teens would usually not care because it's all money to them and, as my mom explains it, they are unlicensed. It was their moms who had the issue because they wanted to be compensated for gas and time and didn't want their teen to take the bus through the neighborhood. I live in a relatively safe neighborhood, too. I remember walking home or just sleeping over at my clients.

  • cybele
    March 19, 2015 at 9:59 pm

    Originally Posted by aurays
    Also, when I was small my grandparents took care of me. And I'm wondering, since more people use family to take care of their children on a regular basis, how do you "pay" them for their work when it's every day that they take of the kids?
    Well, in my case, with homemade pasta and gnocchi

  • akmom
    March 20, 2015 at 1:46 am

    Originally Posted by
    Also, when I was small my grandparents took care of me. And I'm wondering, since more people use family to take care of their children on a regular basis, how do you "pay" them for their work when it's every day that they take of the kids?

    I suppose that usually comes down to wanting what's best for your family, rather than pay. Taking care of kids regularly is what I'd call childcare. Babysitting implies occasionally taking care of kids, like when the parents want to go out for dinner and a movie.

    Originally Posted by
    The teens would usually not care because it's all money to them and, as my mom explains it, they are unlicensed.
    I doubt that. People do care what they get paid, and it should definitely be established beforehand. Teens who have been taught to respect their elders probably won't pitch a fit, but it doesn't mean they wanted to waste their evening for a few bucks. And occasional babysitting doesn't require licensure anyway. That's irrelevant.

    Originally Posted by
    It was their moms who had the issue because they wanted to be compensated for gas and time and didn't want their teen to take the bus through the neighborhood.
    No kidding. Why should the teen's parents subsidize the gas so they can watch kids for a cheapskate? I think it's tacky to surprise your hired help with less than minimum wage. If that's all you can afford, you should be upfront about it, or agree on other favors in return for babysitting.

  • artmom
    March 20, 2015 at 3:04 am

    Originally Posted by akmom

    I doubt that. People do care what they get paid, and it should definitely be established beforehand. Teens who have been taught to respect their elders probably won't pitch a fit, but it doesn't mean they wanted to waste their evening for a few bucks. And occasional babysitting doesn't require licensure anyway. That's irrelevant.

    No kidding. Why should the teen's parents subsidize the gas so they can watch kids for a cheapskate? I think it's tacky to surprise your hired help with less than minimum wage. If that's all you can afford, you should be upfront about it, or agree on other favors in return for babysitting.
    You know, I'm really taken aback by your comment. Cheapskate? Tacky? I was only wanting to give a general example of something I once encountered and I didn't give all the details and, yet, you full out accuse me not being forefront, deceptive and cheap. For your info, I did speak to the babysitter and told her what I could afford. She agreed. I never said I was going to pay her cheaply, but I did need someone to watch my daughter for a couple of evening shifts that week and I had very little time and a restricted budget. I gave her the time I needed her to be here and what I was able to pay her, which would have left me with nothing much but bus fare. Sorry for being such a "cheapskate", but it's not like I was hiring her so I could go to the bar. Yet, when she came I had a few minutes to catch the bus and her mom wants to talk to me. She just tromps into my place and starts yelling at me in front of our daughters and brags how her daughter has another gig that weekend and would be paid $200 for one Saturday every week. Gee, I wish I was that rich. I thought she was going to drag her daughter out of my place leaving me high and dry and looking at a reliability issue for either coming in late or calling in absent too soon before my shift. But her mom grudgingly let her daughter babysit for me just for that one day. I didn't even know her mom was driving her as there is good bus service in the area. My mom used to drive me to some of my babysitting jobs. But most of them were just down the street. If her mom found it too burdensome to drive her down to my place, she could have called me ahead of time. So the next day I was scrambling. I work evenings, so it's not like I could find anything that night. I don't think people want to be called at 11:30pm.

    But I was also referring back to when I was babysitting. My mom never got too involved with how much I was getting paid or how late I was there for. My mom instilled in me, that, yes, you are providing a public service. You are helping hardworking parents have a night out, get to appointments, work, go tend to family issues. Some teens have even volunteered to babysit on emergencies for no or little pay because the parents had no where else to turn. That's life. What I find sad is I've noticed so many parents raising their kids to be selfish and greedy. Actually, people in general have become bad for that. There are people that want to get paid for every bit of work they are asked to do. And all those complainers. One little blip in their order and they act like the roof is going to cave in on them. When I worked in fast food, I would get parents bringing in their teenagers and they would both be staring me down, insulting me, hussling me. I find that disgusting that parents allow their kids to treat others as if they are below them. I wouldn't be surprised if a kid volunteered at a soup kitchen or clothing drive and had a parent storm in and demanded they get paid.
    I raised my daughter to say please and thank you to all service staff and even comment on the food and say thank you afterwards. I have taught her to be patient and understanding that we are all just humans trying to get along and that there are people far worse off than us. I'm raising her to be priceless in society as gratitude, patience and empathy are becoming a rare trait in people these days.

  • akmom
    March 20, 2015 at 11:04 am

    It's easy to label people greedy and selfish when you're the one who needs charity. But the babysitter's parents really do have a right to have their gas OR bus fare or whatever compensated. It seems odd that you arranged substandard pay with the teen directly. I'm not saying you bullied her into it by telling a sob story about how you were poor and in a bind, so she'd feel obligated. But it seems like a request for charity should be run past the parents out of courtesy, or it really does look like you're taking advantage of her.

    I'd have thought the same thing if I suddenly found out my daughter was roped into a babysitting gig that didn't fairly compensate her.

    I don't mind helping a person in a bind, but so often they end up expecting a lot more than they let on. For example... a free babysitting gig that was supposed to be a few hours for an emergency, once turned into an all-day overnight gig, and then she acted like I was supposed to do this every day (and talked as if I had already agreed to such), and the only "compensation" she had in mind was letting me use her washer and dryer (I didn't have one at the time). I've had this happen a lot. Not just with babysitting, but with before-school care and rides. I've been hired to tutor one child and been expected to babysit a whole bunch of children once I got there (which pretty much makes effective tutoring impossible), and then interrogated about the progress.

    Now, I am not saying you did this or planned on doing it. But my experience is, a LOT of people do it. And most likely, this teen's mother had similar experiences with people, so she wanted to nip it in the bud. It could have been averted by being upfront with her, because when a minor does any kind of work, it usually does involve some effort on their family's part too.

  • artmom
    March 20, 2015 at 12:06 pm

    Okay, so you have had some bad experiences helping people out and I can understand if you perceive all people asking for help are trying to take advantage of people.

    However in my case, I'm not a charity case, I did pay her. I just didn't like her mom's approach. I was upfront about how much I could pay. That time was also a trial run to see how they would get along with each other. I don't think it was tactful of the mom to barge in my place and start yelling at me in front of the kids. It was embarrassing and intimidating, I nearly missed my bus which would have made me late for work. I set up everything the day before and if her mom had any questions or concerns or just not okay with it then she should have called me ahead of time so I could, at least, be able to call in work to tell them I couldn't make it in. It's really strict where I work, if you don't call in by 2 hours before your shift it's considered a short notice cancellation and goes against your reliability.

    I most certainly was not taking advantage of her. I've had other babysitters and I didn't have any issues with their moms nor the teens. I'm sure there are some things I could have done differently, but I know I wasn't taking advantage of anybody. All I needed was someone to watch my daughter while I go to work that day and then I continued to look for something more permanent. I discussed with her that it would be late on a weeknight and asked if that would be okay with her and her mom. They didn't have a problem with it as long as it wasn't more than one or nights a week. That was fine.

    My daughter was in a home daycare that I pulled her out of because the lady was not even watching the kids, letting them go to a park without supervision and it was just not a good place for her. My daughter would always be upset about going there. She told me some things I didn't know to this day. I feel really bad she had to go through that and glad I got her out.

  • cybele
    March 20, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    I don't know about bus fares and gas compensated. If the teenager in question was doing it for free then that would be one thing, but if they are being paid then it is paid work and no longer doing someone a favour. I don't know about you, but I certainly don't get paid travel expenses for going to and from work each day, when you accept a job you generally accept the travel that comes with it.

  • akmom
    March 20, 2015 at 2:05 pm

    If you don't believe that paying someone less than minimum wage is taking advantage of them, that's your business I guess. It's not fair to call them greedy or selfish for it though. I would have intervened if someone did that to my daughter too.

    Originally Posted by
    I don't know about you, but I certainly don't get paid travel expenses for going to and from work each day, when you accept a job you generally accept the travel that comes with it.
    Thus the minimum wage, which is what most people assume you will pay, because anything less than that means you likely won't even break even.

  • singledad
    March 20, 2015 at 3:21 pm

    I've actually never understood how parents coyly leave their kids with any stranger, regardless of age and sex. To me, it doesn't matter if someone is male or female. If I know them well enough to trust them with my kids, then that is it. Teenagers of both sexes can be careless/distracted, or unable to cope with an emergency, or even abusive.

    If we want to go out, we leave the kids with friends. If we can't find friends willing to look after them, we don't go out. Full stop. Oh, and compensation is usually in the form of returning the favour.

  • Cathrine88
    April 10, 2015 at 2:22 pm

    I would LOVE to have a male babysitter. I am a single mom and he doesn't have a "real" male figure in his life.

  • aurays
    April 11, 2015 at 11:09 pm

    Thanks for your comment Cathrine88, I didn't think of it that way. It could be a good idea to have a male babysitter for a kid without a male figure in his life



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