Being a parent never stops, even when you’re away from the kids — and even when you hire a babysitter. It’s your responsibility to remain in contact with your childcare, should something go wrong or should they need to reach you.
One babysitter became concerned when the parents did not arrive home at the expected time, nor did they answer her repeated phone calls and texts. She posted to Reddit, asking if she was in the wrong for worrying about the parents’ safety when she was unable to contact them
The parents hired her as a babysitter to watch their kids while they went to a party.
The 16-year-old girl frequently babysat on weekends, so when her mom’s coworker needed a sitter, she happily took the job. She agreed to watch their three kids from 2 p.m. until 8:30 p.m., while the parents went to a party.
Photo: New Africa / Shutterstock
However, the night did not go as planned for the babysitter. The parents did not show up at the agreed-upon time, so the babysitter waited an extra half hour. When the parents still did not arrive home by 9 p.m., she called them but got no response. She called again at 9:30, then 10, then 10:30.
Despite her constant calls and texts, the parents never responded to the babysitter, who was responsible for watching their three young kids.
The babysitter ultimately decided to call law enforcement.
The parents did not reach out to the babysitter the entire night. At 11:30 p.m. — three hours past the time when the parents promised to be back — she was still waiting. Worried that something bad must have happened to the parents to keep them from responding, she called the police.
But just as the police cars showed up in front of the house, so did the parents’ vehicles.
Photo: cottonbro studio / Pexels
The father was enraged that she called the cops because they did not answer the phone. “The dad screamed at me, and he’s still very upset,” she shared.
The babysitter revealed on Reddit that calling the cops was the last thing she wanted to do. She did not want to end the night with police cars at the house and the parents being mad. However, it was her concern for the parent’s safety, and her own need to get home, that led her to do so.
The babysitter also shared on Reddit that she was paid in advance, so she did not get paid for the extra three hours that she unwillingly worked.
Parents must stay in contact with those they hire to watch their children — especially when that person is a teenager and not a childcare professional.
If you know you will be out later than anticipated, give them a call. And if you see missed calls and messages from your sitter, call them back immediately. Though this case was merely an issue of timing, had a child been sick or injured, the 16-year-old babysitter would have been left alone with no way to reach the parents.
Lauren Reams is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news.