Friday, November 21, 2008

What would you do?

So, we had a babysitter a couple of nights ago and I would like to know what others think about what transpired and what you would do the next time you needed a sitter.

Background: First off, my feelings with babysitters and food is "if you find it in the kitchen, you can eat it." This was her second time babysitting for us. She is young, quiet, but nice and polite; she is fantastic with Sara - she loves to play. She even cleans our house! So what's the issue???

When we arrived home and I was getting ready to take her home, she grabbed her jacket and a jawbreaker (one of my MANY jawbreakers I buy in bulk - yes, I love candy, any candy) fell out of her jacket pocket and rolled down the stairs, plunk plunk plunk plunk... So I am thinking "OK, fine one jawbreaker, no big deal." Then after the first one landed, a second one fell out following the first one down the stairs, plunk plunk plunk plunk... (what was only a few seconds, felt like a scene in slow motion). Chad and I looked at each other and it took everything in me not to burst out into laughter. I tried to downplay the event, because I am sure she was embarrassed enough.

So I drove her home, with only a little bit of small talk - "How was Sara? What did you guys do? Was her a good girl? What time did she go to bed? etc." But the entire time I was thinking about the jawbreakers...

When I got back home and opened the door, Chad looked at me and we both burst out into laughter, at the same time I said "I'm really not sure what to think of that."

So with much pondering, I have two very conflicting feelings about this event. On one hand, she's young...so she likes candy and she wanted a bit for later...I said she could help yourself to anything - so she took a couple (at least) jawbreakers, is it really the end of the world? On the other hand, it starts with the jawbreakers, then what? My spare change, my jewellery? With that said, I have difficultly placing jawbreakers in the same category as jewellery. However, the bottom line is she took something (kind of without asking) out of my home. Can I trust her in my home next time?

So, parents and parents-to-be, what would you do, would you have her back?

7 comments:

Janice said...

I would feel the same as you do. Next time she babysits maybe remind her before you go out that she's more than welcome to eat any food in the house but add that it's meant to stay in the house and not be taken home (you could say this lightheartedly and give her a wink just so she knows you haven't forgotten about the incident but you are not angry about it). I think that's what I would do....And just in case, you could start hiding your jewelry.

Lorie said...

It's a hard call. My gut tells me she was just wanting some candy for later. But...you never know.

Melissa said...

I would talk to her about it. It's fair for you to say that if she wants to take some of your treats for later, she can take X number, but that sneaking them like that is not what you expect of an honest girl like her. Make sure she knows how you feel about her as a sitter -- that you think she is great with Sara, polite, amiable, but sneaking is not okay. It is different than jewellery, but what if she found a loonie in your couch or some quarters on the counter? What then, is fair game? It's a silly thing -- taking candy -- but I still think it's worth a serious conversation.

supermommy said...

I have had these feelings before too.
She probably took you very literally when you said she can eat whatever is in the kitchen! The fact that you saw the jawbreakers fall out of her pocket was probably embarrasing enough for her, so I doubt she would take anything else. I would have her back but I would leave her a little basket of goodies labelled "babysitter snacks♥" Tell her she can have anything in the basket ONLY!♥ Good Luck!

Lee said...

I would have her back. If that had happened to me as a kid I would have been mortified! It's just candy. I wouldn't suspect her of being a hard core thief just yet ;)
Honestly, I wouldn't even address it.
Perhaps I'm projecting a bit - I have a real sweet tooth and I could see myself doing the same thing as a teen. I would never have taken anything else, and I wouldn't have even taken the treats unless I was told I could eat what I found. :)

Anonymous said...

I would have her back. I agree with supermommy about leaving her a basket (or plate) of something for herself. As a teen, I was known as the neighborhood babysitter, and I was always very uncomfortable being told to 'help myself' and would never have anything. I didn't want them to feel that I was going through the cupboards or fridge. As well, when they left me something it made me feel important. I never did their housework. I would, however, always clean up behind our 'play' and if the kids were in bed for a while before they came home I would clean up any dishes that may have been left before they went out. It was important to remember that I was there for the kids. My concern would be that the cleaning up is a cover for the sneakiness. I have had sitters steal large, important things from me (and one was a very wonderful girl that I was close to)I think taking the candy IS cause for concern. It isn't just 'candy' it's 'taking' something.

Joan

Sandra Knight said...

Lovely blog and interesting post. I would not really care about the candy but have no problem talking about it: did you get enough to eat? is there still lots of candy left or should i buy some more?

One very responsible girl had her boyfriend here during the eve, only found out the next day from my kids. (ages 21,19 and it seemed to go well) But she never asked or told and i have not had her back.

stories like this make me more grateful to finally have an ETH nanny...sk