Babysitting is a common occurrence that has been around for just about forever. But if we unpack it, it's actually a pretty strange concept.
Think about it. A parent or parents entrusts the entire safety and well-being of their flesh and blood children into the hands of a teenager who, in many cases, just happens to be a family friend or a neighbor.
With all those variables in place, any strange or troublesome incident can immediately put the babysitter against the ropes. Then the panic sets in and all becomes chaos.
Sure, the parents are a phone call away, but the babysitter still has to get through the initial insanity of whatever the kids get into.
Curious about people's bad experiences, Redditor _OwOtaku_ asked:
"babysitters of reddit, what is the worst thing you've come across while babysitting?"
Many people shared the times a child's behavior was clearly the result of their parents. The babysitter couldn't exactly blame the kid, but it was uncomfortable nonetheless.
The Mother Load
"The toddler came out into the living room holding the mom's sex toy. I was beyond grossed out! When I went to put it away in their bedroom, they had a whole drawer full of stuff."
"As a 12 year old, it was a bit much to see."
Like Father, Like Son
"This kid was angry bc i wouldn't let him have more candy (his mothers orders) and started saying all these bad words and other things that are very inappropriate for a 6-7 year old."
"I asked him where hes heard those things and he responded saying his dad says those things to her mom when hes mad."
"A kid I was babysitting threatened to tell his parents I was inappropriate with him because I refused to tell him what 'supermaning' meant (this was in 2007, the peak of Soulja Boy)."
"Another one was when I had to confront the parents of a kid because he told me he hated Obama because he was black while we were at the playground. I, as well as a bunch of other people, were shocked at what he said. That was a fun conversation that ultimately lead to me quitting."
A Sudden Star
"Got caught in a drug raid while babysitting and local TV station was along to record it all for a show they aired."
"Kids showed cops where all the drugs were, got taken away, I was sent home & my parents had to contact the station to say, they did not have permission to show me in that episode, it never aired bc there were only minors involved. Never babysat again."
"The mind numbing tv designed for babies that somehow disturbingly holds their attention for hours. I'm not sure how healthy that is on a long term basis. I would sometimes babysit for this nanny (like take over for when she was busy), who took care of these 2 babies nearly everyday."
"And she said to leave the tv on, that was preset to a baby channel, for them because they love it. These babies just stared at the screen for hours except when I fed them and then put them down for a nap. I tried to play with them with toys and stuff and they weren't super interested, it might capture their attention briefly but then they'd always go back to the tv. These were 5 month old babies."
Others shared the truly bizarre and unexpected things that happened. These were cartoonishly bad times on the job.
Out of Sight Out of Mind
"A nine year old boy was at a play date and he crapped himself and thought no one would notice if he put the crap in the air conditioner vent. The mom of the house was not happy."
The Rodent Room
"A tiny room FULL of guinea pigs. Cages and cages on shelves on the walls. They all seemed well fed and content but there must have easily have been 30 cages at least!"
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Hard Line Negotiator
"The kid who tried to blackmail me by threatening to cut off all her hair and tell her parents that I did it if I did delay bedtime. Same kid also tried to push me into some exposed nails in their unfinished basement. I babysat her regularly because she drove all the other babysitters in the area away. Her siblings and parents were nice though."
Children of the Corn
"Not my story, but a friends. She would babysit these kids sometimes that were just pure evil. Not in a cute way. They thought it would be funny to sprinkle broken glass into her salad. She caught on to it and was legitimately afraid of these boys and never ever babysat for this family again"
"Looking through photos that where hung up on a wall. One was smaller than others, kinda grainy, I lean in to look at it closer and jump back in shock. It was the moment of birth shot from below, head crowning it's called I think. Even for my horny 12 year old self too much."
"In college, I was babysitting for a family. Absolutely lovely people. Their cat was having some health problems, but at the time, they were under control."
"Poor cat had a seizure when I was babysitting. It was rough, little body twitching, the kids were worried, I was worried. It didn't last long, and he seemed ok afterwards. Poor thing peed on the living room carpet during the seizure, so I found some carpet cleaner and cleaned it the best I could."
"Parents thanked me afterwards for helping out with the cat. They followed up with the vet, and put the cat on a new round of medication, which helped."
Never Got Around To It
"I was 14, babysitting 3 girls. Their dad told them to clean their toys from the backyard because people were coming in the afternoon to look at the house (it was for sale). When we were going outside, the dog escaped and came back with a huge rabbit, now dead, in the middle of the yard."
"Geez, and they're trying to sell the house! So I had to put it in a plastic bag while the 3 year old watched in horror. They didn't have a dumpster and I didn't want to take it into the house so I put it discreetly by the stoop, and told the parents."
"Babysat there again 3 days later and the bagged up dead rabbit WAS STILL THERE. Geez guys."
Other people talked about the times that revolved around food. Of course, babysitters are often tasked with cooking meals for the kids.
These times were a train wreck.
"A friend of mine was hired to be a nanny. She was flown from the midwest plains to a fifth avenue apartment. On the first night the parents went out and told her to feed the kids."
"She got them pizza and the kids loved it, having never had pepperoni before. The family was Jewish, she was fired and sent home the next day."
"First babysitting job at 13. Four kids. Parents gave me a whole fresh salmon to COOK and serve the kids. I learned that day that salmon has pin bones when I had to pull some out of the 3 yo's throat while simultaneously calling my parents down the road because I didn't know what to do, as he's coughing and gasping for air and the other kids are freaking tf out."
"He was fine but I think I lost 10 years off my life that day."
"I stuck my hand in the couch cushions to look for a remote and came up with an uncooked hot dog. 🤢"
If you find yourself surrounded by friends, relatives, or neighbors having kids, bare all of this in mind before agreeing to babysit.
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