All parents need a night out. But if you don’t have family or close friends nearby and you need to hire a babysitter, you could be down $100 before you’ve even bought a glass of the second-cheapest white wine.
One low-income single mum raised the issue of babysitting prices in the Mamamia community.
This mum works five days a week as a carer and a housecleaner, and she’s also studying, as well as bringing up her son, who’s just started school.
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She’s been quoted $25-$30 an hour cash in hand for a babysitter.
“I find myself comparing me being on my feet all day compared to someone coming, sitting on the couch and chilling with my kid for that money,” she wrote.
“I am organised so dinner would be good to go. I have wifi. Stream all you want. My kid has his Switch and will happily chill playing or watching a movie. I’ve always thought I’m literally working to pay a babysitter just for a night out. Opinions on pricing? I’m going to say more from lower-income, single-parent families.”
Oh, she got plenty of opinions, and not just from lower-income, single-parent families. Some people had a problem with the way she described a babysitter’s job.
“They aren’t just chilling with your kid, they are there in case of emergency, as well as looking after the most precious little person,” one said. “We paid a babysitter $30 an hour on our wedding night. She was fantastic.”
“I always paid my sitters well to look after the most valuable thing in my life,” another added. “You are not paying for the sitting down. You are paying for the ‘what if’.”