48 Hours - 14 YO babysitter

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
48 Hours - 14 YO babysitter
18
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 7:30am
Did anyone watch this last night?

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/03/13/48hours/main543927.shtml

I watched in shock - - - here a woman left a 2 and a 3 year old with a 14 year old babysitter, and the younger child was very sick.

I think some 14 year olds are old enough to babysit. In fact, this kid seemed rather exceptional - but on a full time basis for children so young? I myself at 14 would babysit on a Sat. night, for a few hours, but I can't remember watching kids this young, or any child with a fever/vomiting.

One of the reasons I SAH is because I feel there is a lack of *quality* care where I live. I have kids this young in age, and spaced so close together. When they were that age, in fact, my highly responsible 20 yo brother would come out to my home when we took a night out, had everything prepared - kids fed, in pjs, ready to play for a little bit and go to bed. My other brother and SIL live right across the street, and they have four children - so I felt if there was anything he could not handle, he could call us on the cell or seek close-by assistance.

Am I way out in left field here? Or am I really one of these overboard mothers?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 9:59am
I have a couple of questions on this one....not much time but here are two and will expand further:

1. Why do they believe the father/mother based only on them stating "they didn't do it" (especially considering one link states a doc called C&Y because of possible abuse bruising when in ER for stomach bug).

2. Why didn't the mother just come home the first time when told her dd was still sick. Sorry, I have dealt with parents that refuse to believe their child is as sick as they really are. I am not trying to be rude or mean here....but if someone says your child is sick (I don't care if they are sleeping or not) you need to get out of work and go to them. Even more so if it is a young babysitter because they don't always have the "how sick is sick" concept.

(be back later and will finish reading the rest of the links).

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 10:15am
there are TWO issues here.

The first is age. I have a 6yo anda 2.5yo and I would not leave them with a 14yo babysitter. The evening babysitter we have is 17. She often brings her 14yo brother with her who loves to play with the kids. so we, in essence, have two watching the kids. And I was hesitant about her watching them to begin with. But we know her and her family,so I got over it. And she's great. The evening babysitter we had before her was 24 and married. lol This was when the kids were 5 and 1.

The second issue is teh sick kid. I wouidn't leave a feverish, much less vomiting, kid with ANY babysitter. That is poor judgement on the parenting part.

Hollie

Avatar for biancamami
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 12:11pm
I would never leave my child with another child...and yes, all the 14 year olds I know still behave like children (haven't met one so mature that I would allow them to babysit)

In fact, the only people I have ever left my DD with are relatives (SIL, MIL, Mom) and her Nanny. We just don't have the time to fully screen someone else and we haven't had the need.

Ana
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 3:28pm
ITA

Though they never once, mentioned much beyond the facts of the case. It played out like it was perfectly acceptable to leave your kids with a fourteen year old.

And sick, yes. He had called the mother at work and let her know that baby was still sick. She chose to let him handle it. I just find it appalling, really!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-08-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 3:57pm
For my two kids no teen baby sitters. We don't hire baby sitters anyway. But I'd prefer college girls of the ages in their early twenties and from families that I know about their bahvior and what kind of girls they are before they would be hired to take care of my 2 kids.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 4:03pm
So you don't hire babysitters. Does that mean you leave your kids with unpaid "sitters" such as relatives? or that you've never been away from your kids?

HOllie

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-12-2002
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 4:37pm
When our kids were toddlers, we used a friends son as our babysitter if/when we went out to dinner. We used him from age 14 until 16. He was awesome with the kids, and his parents were always a few houses down. And we NEVER left our kids with him when they were sick. However, I wouldn't have used him on a regular basis while I was working, and again, not while my kids were sick.

This case sounds really yucky (I didn't see the episode, but have read through most of your link). Who knows who caused the injuries. Should mom have come home when she found out child was sick? Yes. Should she have left the child with a 14 y/o babysitter if the child was sick (as the 14 y/o says she was)? No. With the evidence shown in the article, could I convict this (now) 16 y/o? No.

I don't know...I see no problem with teens babysitting, on a case-by-case basis, but regularly, and while the kids being babysat for are sick? No....I can't see ever doing that.

Okmrsmommy-36, CPmom to DD-16 and DS-14

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 7:07pm
I only caught the first few minutes of that because of it's "review" on the dss menu "14 year old honor student babysitter is charged w/ murder". I was thinking it was like a little girl scout who watched kids one evening while mom and dad went to a movie. I was shocked that it was a daycare-type situation. 14 is too young, and am I the only one that thinks it's weird to have a young boy do sitting? I'm not saying an hour here or there....... but as a dc provider.......... full time? I mean girls do have a little maternal instinct, but boys are just so....... reckless at that age. I know I sound sexist, but sorry, it's just how I feel. Anyways, no, I don't leave my kids with a 14 year old now........ for all day or for just a movie. We actually use my cousin's fiance who is in her 20's and in school, and is a DOLL. SHe was a nanny for a few years and I feel comfortable with her. I have left my older boy (4) with a teenager for an hour or two before, but never the baby. Something about a teenager with a baby that freaks me out. Babies are just so much work and if they get in one of those "moods" where they just cry and cry, I don't think some teens would know how to handle it. Marissa isn't a mom yet, but I've seen her with her neices/nephews and she was a nanny for years, and she just has maturity that comforts me.

Anyways, JMHO, sorry if I insulted anyone who uses 14 year old boys for babysitters.

Avatar for taylormomma
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-23-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 9:08pm
I wondered this as well.

I don't think the age of the babysitter really has anything to do with this story.

Avatar for taylormomma
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-23-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 9:10pm
Yeah, you do sound sexist.

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