When to Call the Parents

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I have been babysitting and nannying for a little over seven years. I have never had to call the parent’s to come home early. I guess I thought that I could handle any situation and I didn’t want to ruin a date night or worry a parent. But last night changed that. I watch Oliver, 3, and his sister Natalie, 5, every Thursday night. They are the best behaved kids I have ever watched. But recently, Natalie has entered the bossy stage and Oliver has entered the “I want it now/my way or the highway” stage..which combined is not good.

I arrived after dinner when the kids were beginning to settle down from a long day. We played Doctor, Jump rope, hula hoop and with blocks. We watched their favorite bedtime show, then it was off to the bath tub for “scuba time”. The kids didn’t have their listening ears on and began jumping and splashing around more than what was safe. After three warnings, they had to get out. Natalie went to her room to get her pajamas on but Oliver continued being disobedient. He sprawled out on the floor naked in protest about going to get his pajamas on and going to bed. I picked him up and escorted him to his room where he stood crying. He slammed the door in my face, refusing to get his pajamas on. I left him there to calm down while I helped Natalie get ready for bed. When I went back to his room, he ran for his closet and barricaded himself inside..still screaming bloody murder, saying I was the “baddest babysitter ever” and that I was “a mean liar for making him go to his room” . He didn’t want to listen or follow my rules so his mother was called in. She had warned me that he had been moody, but I had never seen him like this.

When his mother arrived, she had difficulty calming him down. He was mad that 1)scuba time was cut short, 2)that I asked him to put his p.j’s on and 3) that he had to do something he didn’t want! The mom finally got him to bed after they talked about following the rules and doing things that grown ups ask even if you don’t want too.

Later that night, the mom told me that he was not grasping the idea of patience and obedience very well. Combined with his bible study lesson on lying..he was one confused little boy.

I am happy to say, Oliver and I are back on good terms and he hasn’t been a problem since.

Where am I going with this??

Sometimes it is ok to call parents. Small children can get very worked up with a change in routine or change in parenting style. In this case, there is nothing you can do.


1) EMERGENCY-fire, injury, break in etc

2) ILLNESS- if a child gets sick on your watch, call parents to let them know. They may want to come home to administer medicine

3) MELTDOWNS: kids will cry but if they cannot calm down, parent’s need to be called

4) UNCOMFORTABLE SITUATIONS: If the child threatens you or themselves, or if you feel uneasy at any time


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