Leaving your kids with a babysitter for the first time
By Babysits, 3 min read
Having to leave your children in the care of a babysitter for the first time can be incredibly unnerving for any parent. Check out the following tips to help make this process go smoothly for both you and the kids!
Find a babysitter you trust and get to know them
When using Babysits, pick out and contact people with profiles that are detailed and include profile photos; comprehensive profiles are far more trustworthy. Check the profiles for things such as credentials, experience, and verifications or references. Furthermore, ask them questions to find out how they would fit in with your family values. Don’t be afraid of asking the potential babysitter too many questions. If the sitter is serious about the job, he/she will be happy to oblige with answering your questions. After the initial contact on the Babysits messaging platform, you can arrange a phone call or a face-to-face meeting in a public space. This will allow you to get a greater understanding into what the babysitter is like and whether he/she is the perfect match for your family.
Give kids notice in advance
Notify your children as early as possible when you have hired a babysitter. It is often overlooked, but kids do need time to prepare too! Consider taking the kids with you to meet the babysitter before the babysitting appointment. Familiarity will allow the children to be comfortable on the day of the babysitting appointment. Encourage the kids to get excited about having a babysitter and emphasise how much fun the kids are going to have!
Ask the babysitter to start early
On the day of the babysitting appointment, invite the babysitter to come to the house 1 to 2 hours before the start of their shift. This will allow your children to become comfortable with the new caregiver. Encourage the new caregiver and your children to interact with each other while you are nearby. Remember that building relationships takes time so don’t force it too much! The sitter and children engaging in a fun activity will distract the kids and will make it easier when you leave the house.
Have emergency contacts
Emergencies don't happen very often, however, it is imperative that all babysitters are prepared to handle an emergency should one arise. Discuss with the sitter what they should do if certain situations occur. Write a list of emergency contact numbers and explain to the sitter when each number should be used. Consider including the emergency services number, your phone number and your parents or another emergency phone number in the list.
Provide information and resources
Different families have different house rules. Make sure to clearly explain your house rules and any special instructions to the babysitter. It is beneficial to make agreements about the use of household items so that the sitter knows exactly what they are allowed to use. Also, make sure to show the babysitter where they can find all necessary materials needed to care for the children (e.g. diapers, pacifiers etc.). Make sure you provide the babysitter with your children’s daily routine, your children’s favourite toys, and all food and drink supplies necessary.
Additionally, make your expectations and boundaries clear to both your children and the sitter. The kids should understand that the rules do not change just because you are not home.
Don’t sneak away
When leaving the house, make sure you say good-bye to your children. Not doing so can cause a child to become anxious and worry about where you went. When saying good-bye, smile and give each child a cuddle. Stay calm and explain that you will be coming back later.