Leaving your kids with a babysitter can cause some stress and anxiety, especially for the first time. Create peace of mind by preparing yourself, your home, and your babysitter for your night away.
Give Your Potential Sitter a Hands-On Interview
Let’s be honest – it’s never-wracking leaving our kids at home with a stranger. When you really need a sitter, it’s best to prepare for babysitter nights at least a week in advance. First off, give a new sitter your a hands-on interview. Have your babysitter come over and babysit your child while you’re home doing chores or house work and let them get used to the child's normal routine. This way, you and your child can build trust that your babysitter will watch over your child carefully.
You Have House Rules. Make Sure Your Kids Follow Them.
When you are gone, your child might try to get one over on the babysitter. That’s where house rules come in. Write down all your rules (Ex: “No TV after 9 PM”, “Bed time at 9:30 PM”, “No desserts”, etc.), and place them out in the open (on the refrigerator, on the kitchen table, etc.). If you are leaving a newborn at home, give precise instructions on how and when you what your baby fed, changed, and put to bed.
Babysitter Safety | Leave Out In Case of Emergency (ICE) Information
Next to those house rules, write down a list of important phone numbers, and when to call them. Write down your number first, and tell your babysitter when it is okay to call you and text you (emergencies only/your child does not want to eat dinner/other). Write down several other numbers in case your phone goes dead or you miss their call, and your babysitter encounters a true emergency. If a fire occurs, designate a safe spot for your sitter to go to. If a flood or leak happens, but it is safe to stay inside the home, you may still want to be notified before you get home, so you can call a repair and restoration expert. ServiceMaster is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in the unlikely event such an incident occurs. The quicker the damage is mitigated, the less costly it will be for you to fix.
Prepare Your House for Your Sitter
Before you leave, do a house walk-through with the sitter of every room that is going to be unlocked while your sitter is home. As you give the tour, write down and note where emergency tools are, such as the circuit breaker, fire extinguisher, phones, water shut-off valve, and alarms. Leave your first aid kit out in the open, too. After your house walkthrough, give a quick babysitter safety test to make sure your sitter knows what to do in case of emergency.
Enjoy your Night Off!
Have fun away from the kids! Be glad you decided to prepare for babysitter night well in advance, and enjoy your time away from your children with full peace of mind. Remember, you are prepared, the sitter is prepared, which will create a seamless transition between you and the sitter for the kids. And if a disaster were to occur, the babysitter is well educated and equipped.