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2 Bumps

Would you trade favors for babysitting?

I like my kids and can handle other people's kids, but I have my limits to other people's kids. If I ask a friend to babysit, I always offer to pay. Never free so I won't get stuck in the favor's rut. I don't like the idea of trading babysitting for babysitting since I have four to why I pay for my kids to be watched. I make sure my kids are fed and have back up clothes, snacks, extra items for when they get watched either at my home or others homes.

I will occasionally watch the friend's kid, but the kid is 3 and steals (Editing:  STEALS as in her mom is aware that she does it and continues to let her do it). The mom complains about how I do things and I put up with it, but since she's the only person willing to give me and my kids the time of day, I suck it up. Is it WRONG for me to offer to pay so I can get out of the favor's trap? I don't want to watch her child so I'd rather pay and be done with it. Is that wrong?


Asked by Imortlmommy at 8:05 AM on Jan. 23, 2011 in General Parenting

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This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • I think that 4 to 1 is a great trade off and Id be happy that someone else even thinks its fair. Thats just me though. If you dont want to watch her son then find another sitter. Paying or not is not going to mean that she wont ask you to babysit. Aside from "stealing" does this kid have other issues?? Check his stuff before mom comes to make sure hes not going home with anything. Its your call though. Good Luck

    Answer by Steph319 at 8:22 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • 1. 3 years don't steal. They might take without asking but using the word steal is, in my opinion, harsh.
    2. You don't sound like much of a friend.

    Answer by Syphon at 8:11 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • I have one friend that I will share/trade babysitting with. Her two girls get along with my kids really well, and we are on the same page as far as parenting goes. It's nice to have someone watch my 3yo so I can go get my hair or nails done.

    In your case, it almost sounds like you are taking advantage. If the intent is to allow her some babysitting as well (most moms I know would rather have a sitter for a few hours than money), it's not fair of you to "pay your way out of it." If you don't like her kids, find someone else to watch your kids.

    Answer by Scuba at 8:21 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • My friend and I do marble trades. We each started with 10 marbles. One marble per kid per hour. That way it stays fair. once out of marbles you are out of luck. Right now I have 16 marbles so she will either be out soon or it's about time for me to call in a favor!

    To answer your question. No,there is nothing wrong with you paying if trade offs aren't ideal for the two of you.

    Answer by But_Mommie at 8:09 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • I agree that a 3 year old wouldn't "steal" in the way that word implies.

    I also think that there is nothing wrong if you don't want to get caught up in doing favours and would rather pay for someone to look after. That is your choice and there is nothing wrong with it.

    I think I wouldn't mind doing the favour thing though - I don't like that money is involved in anything but I wouldn't want to stop short when it came to my kids, I would want to swap favours for other things like fixing my car etc. However, my family tend to look after my 3 year old without needing money or a favour in return (they love spending time with my son) and they know if they need me to do anything I will.

    Answer by keyaziz at 8:25 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • Totally agree with Steph.. I think it's extremely generous of your friend to consider 4 kids a good exchange for watching her 1 kid. But I do get what your saying about feeling like you owe something to someone as well. IMO though if you really thought her child was THAT bad then why would you drop your kids off and leave them at their house while you get a break.. but not want to do the same in return?

    Answer by Ctink8189 at 8:26 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • I have one friend where we trade babysitting, one week I watch her two kids, one week she watches my one kid.

    Answer by cassie_kellison at 8:34 AM on Jan. 23, 2011

  • I help her when I can. My older kids can help with watching the younger ones so she's not really doing much other than being the adult supervision...and they aren't old enough to babysit on their own. I don't have many friends willing to watch all four so I am grateful she will help me and I am looking elsewhere, but its stressful. Why I don't want to watch her kid...because her kid does things that her mom lets her get away with and I'm apparently not suppose to do things my way while caring for her child. I don't like my kids being around that behavior, but since I have older kids, I'm being hopeful that my kids behavior rubs off on her child for the better. -Sigh-

    As for be not being a good friend...meh, I lack people skills. Working on it.

    Comment by Imortlmommy (original poster) at 8:32 AM on Jan. 23, 2011