Finding a babysitter that you trust to keep your child safe is a task parents spend hours on, meticulously combing through resumes to find the perfect fit. To help you out, here are 10 tips that may ease the burden of finding the right person to watch over your son/daughter.
- If possible, avoid finding a sitter online. Ask those you trust – family and friends – for referrals first.
- Conduct a background check. Ask for a list of references and call everyone on the list.
- Schedule in-person interviews at your home.
- Ask questions such as:
- “How do you deal with fussy babies?”
- “How would you handle a situation where the children refuse to go to bed?”
- “Tell me about a difficult babysitting situation you’ve faced and how you handled/resolved it?”
- “What do you find most challenging and rewarding about being a sitter?”
- Bring your children into the second half of the meeting and observe how potential sitters interact with them.
- Take notes to refer back to when making a final decision.
- Evaluate how your child’s strengths and struggles pair up with any potential candidates.
- Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t seem right, don’t go through with it.
- Give yourself plenty of time to find the right sitter. This will prevent you from making a rushed decision.
- If your child attends daycare/preschool, consider hiring a teacher from their school. These individuals have training, have gone through the school’s background check and there’s a good chance your child knows them and feels comfortable with them.
If you suspect a child is being abused, whether it’s online, in the schoolyard, during after school activities, or while in the care of another, reach out to the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline. You can make a tremendous difference in the life of an abused child just by seeking support from our professional crisis counselors. Call Childhelp at 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453).