I remember being 14 years old and getting my first official babysitting job at the O’Donnell’s house.
I was so excited. I was actually getting paid to babysit for some pretty easy and good kids.
There were 2 of them, a boy who was 8, and a girl who was 6.
At 14, I handled them pretty well. I was able to make dinner. I was able to clean the kitchen. I was able to supervise baths and make sure bedtime was smooth. And I was able to stay up past midnight until Mr. and Mrs. O’Donnell came home.
So it came as a surprise to me when I met some neighbors recently who have a 12 year old daughter… and they told me that she is “ready to babysit any time we were ready for her!”
No. No. No.
A 12 year old girl watching 3 boys – all under 3.
I actually was so surprised by the statement that I said to the parents, “Oh, I can hardly do 3 alone half the time!”
To which they responded, “Oh she babysits for the Greenes down the street at least a few times a month and they have 3 kids 7 and under. She does great.”
The youngest is 13 months.
Now I’m not saying that she wouldn’t do great babysitting in general. She is an outgoing girl. She laughs and plays and giggles and has been known to entertain my kids a few minutes at a time as she has ridden her bike by the house.
BUT…babysit all 3 of them? On her own? For a few hours at a time?
And she’s 12?
I don’t know what has happened. I haven’t been under a rock that long… but when did neighborhood babysitters get so young!?
And am I the only one who would feel a little uncomfortable leaving my 3 boys with a 12 year old while Matt and I did dinner and a movie!?
Call me anal (it wouldn’t be the first time!), but I can think of 2 people I would feel comfortable asking (for now), and they go by the names (to me) Mom and Dad!