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Want babysitting advice

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Tomorrow evening (Thursday) I'm supposed to watch my 6 y/o cousin for a few hours. I'd really like advice on how to deal with something.

I'm sure that he's going to want to play outside. With the high temperature and humidity, I'm sure I'm not gonna want to go outside. I certainly can't let him go out by himself, especially since he's proven himself untrustworthy. If I tell him no and give him a reason why, he's going to insist and throw a tantrum. He'll most likely make several attempts to go outside.

How should I handle a situation like that? I think my main problem is with him attempting to go outside after I've already told him no. I'm gonna have to follow him around to make sure he doesn't sneak out. Then if he manages to get outside, am I supposed to physically pick him up and take him back if he won't go? I feel like he's getting to be too old to be physically handled like that.

His behavior is really horrible. He thinks he's the boss of everyone and when he doesn't get his way he whines and has a tantrum. I know a lot of kids are like this but he gets mad way to easy. Of all the kids I've ever had to babysit he is the worst. I have no choice in this case as there was sort of a last minute emergency.
post #2 of 14
Go outside It will make your life allot easier if he's happy & running around outside not getting into trouble. You can always sit under the shade somewhere and set up a sprinkler for him to run around through. Bonus, he's going to tire himself out and be allot easier to handle later in the evening.

If you're babysitting it's not your job to deal with his behavioural problems, I wouldn't give in to him but if doing what he wants makes him easier on you - just do what he wants.

It's easier to stay pacient when you remember that he's probably not just being bad, he's probably acting out because of troubles at home (non of us are perfect). Or he's just a brat, that's possible too GL!
post #3 of 14
Wow. I'm sorry but he sounds like a "brat".

I have no advice, but if he were in my care, he'd either respect and listen to my wishes, or have a very boring day sitting in a time out chair for not listening or having a temper tantrum, etc.

I'm fairly strict in that I would not tolerate the behaviour you're describing.

If its humid and muggy out, I wouldn't be outside either. There's plenty of things to do inside on days like that. (printing off some colouring pages is one idea.... random online computer games depending on how computer savy he is.... etc.)

When my kids or kids in my care have had tantrums, I ignore them UNLESS they are going to cause harm to themselves or others, then I step in and if I have to physically seat them in a chair, then so be it.

I hope that today goes as smoothly as possible
post #4 of 14
I agree with SL, but there is a big difference between a kid you babysit regularly and one you see everyone once and while. I was a nanny to the little boy next door for a year & so I'd end up dealing with all his 'issues' (he was 2/3) and teaching him things were his parents were too busy don't get me started on them... but in his case I'd discipline and teach him manners (and how to talk... nevermind).

With your little guy, if it's one evening - just have fun! You don't need to start a big fight with a kid you're not going to see again.
post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nes View Post
I agree with SL, but there is a big difference between a kid you babysit regularly and one you see everyone once and while. I was a nanny to the little boy next door for a year & so I'd end up dealing with all his 'issues' (he was 2/3) and teaching him things were his parents were too busy don't get me started on them... but in his case I'd discipline and teach him manners (and how to talk... nevermind).

With your little guy, if it's one evening - just have fun! You don't need to start a big fight with a kid you're not going to see again.
I agree with this. If it is just for one night and he is not someone you sit for usually.
Get him before he has a chance to whine and whail. Set up games, (computer, video) and if he rolls his eyes and pitches a B about it (I don't like that I wanna go out, whaa whaa whaaa) Go out. Giving in to him? Yep. But you just may have fun too outside, despite the heat. I like the sprinkler idea. I remember many a time my folks would set that up for me and I went from crabby tantrum 5-6 year old to happy playing in the water, and my parents would join in, everyone happy!
I agree with Snake Lady that dicipline needs to be taught to this child, desperatly, but this is not your job to do for one night.
post #6 of 14
I agree with everyone saying you should just suck it up and go outside.

Give him a time limit though, most kids are happy to get what they want, even if it's only for a short period of time.

Sitting outside for a half-hour in the shade won't kill you, and 30 minutes flies by. Then when you get him to come inside, play some games or watch one of his favorite movies.

Although, if he does have a tantrum about anything, if physically handling him and setting him into a timeout chair or into the corner is what it takes then you should do it. At six he should know better than to throw tantrums and expect that someone is going to correct him if he does, even if it is physical.


Edit - Also, they don't have a fenced in yard? Could you let him outside into the backyard and watch through the window? You could set a chair up just inside the backdoor and sit there with a book while you keep an eye on him too.
post #7 of 14
I agree with the above poster: go outside on a time limit. Structure is a really good thing for undisciplined children. Have an indoor reward like a treat after the outdoor time, so if he throws a tantrum upon the time to come in, you have a "punishment" that you can enforce - if you dont stop right now - no penut butter crackers for you type of thing. I like the sprinkler idea too.
On the other hand, plan several things you know he LOVES for indoor play, so when he wants to go outside you can say "Oh, its so hot I thought we would stay in and build a lego alien fortress!", you can usually negotiate if you are offering up something "just as good"

Good luck
post #8 of 14
Why not say "yes" as much as you can? Pack up some bottles of ice water and some sidewalk chalk and head outdoors with the kid. Running through the sprinkler is also a great idea, as is talking to him about the weather (heat/humidity) and setting a time limit of how long you're going to stay outdoors.
post #9 of 14
Without turning this into IMO, I have to wonder....

Why is it that children have more rights than caregivers, or parents?

If its hot and humid out, why on earth should the OP be forced by a child who disrespects everyone, to go outside if the weather is icky?

It's no wonder our society's children don't listen to authority figures.
post #10 of 14
You can try persuading him with some indoor activities, like...

Bord Games (but make sure you let him win since he seems like a sore loser)
Card Games (Go Fish/War, etc.)
Rent a Kid's Movie (Call and see if there's anything he wants to watch)
... or hope for a SpongeBob or some other hypnotic kid show marathon on Nick/Cartoon Network/Disney. lol
post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snake_Lady View Post
Without turning this into IMO, I have to wonder....

Why is it that children have more rights than caregivers, or parents?

If its hot and humid out, why on earth should the OP be forced by a child who disrespects everyone, to go outside if the weather is icky?

It's no wonder our society's children don't listen to authority figures.
I completly agree with you, but, (isn't there always a but, lol) I think this is a case of picking your battles.
Its obvious the parents let this kid run their house, and this cant be solved in one day of babysitting. The OP can spend the time dealing with tantrums and fits and the endless torture of the kid demanding his way and not getting it, or just let the kid out of the house for a bit and pray for time to fly by.

ETA: I would have very, very different advice it this were the OP's own child.
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snake_Lady View Post
Without turning this into IMO, I have to wonder....

Why is it that children have more rights than caregivers, or parents?

If its hot and humid out, why on earth should the OP be forced by a child who disrespects everyone, to go outside if the weather is icky?

It's no wonder our society's children don't listen to authority figures.
I agree. It doesn't matter if the OP is the babysitter or not, she is STILL IN CHARGE. She is the authority and what she says should be law until the parents come home. I understand "giving in" makes it easier for her, but it's just teaching the boy that he can control another person, which isn't good.

I agree with finding as many things as he likes to do inside to occupy his time....oh, it's Friday now, so I guess it's a done deal. Let us know how it went.
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by calico2222 View Post
I agree. It doesn't matter if the OP is the babysitter or not, she is STILL IN CHARGE. She is the authority and what she says should be law until the parents come home. I understand "giving in" makes it easier for her, but it's just teaching the boy that he can control another person, which isn't good.

I agree with finding as many things as he likes to do inside to occupy his time....oh, it's Friday now, so I guess it's a done deal. Let us know how it went.
Exactly my point. Whether the child is one the OP cares for infrequently or frequently, is irrelevant. The point is that the caregiver is in charge.

We're talking about a 6yr old, someone who is old enough to know better, NOT a 1-2yr old toddler.

Anyways, I hope it went ok, and you were able to find some enjoyable things for you both to do.
post #14 of 14
How did things go?

I still say when you're a temporary/infrequent caregiver you shouldn't be enforcing your own set of rules - maybe the parents let their kids run around screaming all the time because they think they are letting them be free spirits. You might not agree, but they aren't your kids. Some families let their kids have ice cream instead of dinner, or watch TV 8 hours a day.

It's like when DS's grandparents are over he doesn't see them frequently so I don't nit-pick about the cheesies they feed him or the toys they spoil him with. It's one day out of a month it's not going to ruin him for the rest of his life. Nana and Papa just get to be more "fun" then mommy!
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