So, I recently got into a bit of an argument with someone. I stated that I prefer to be called a Child Care Provider rather than a babysitter. She called this elitist and said that the political correctness of today's society makes people label and judge one another.
Hmm....it seems we have always labeled one another; Mechanic, Doctor, Teacher. Those are all labels. But let's get down to the heart of this. She could not see that there is a difference between a babysitter and a child care provider. She said that they both offer the same service and that by saying that I was not a babysitter, I was disrespectful to those who are.
Perhaps she's right. I don't think so, but that may be my elitist attitude showing through.
Here's how I look at it.
I am a Child Care Provider. This is not a job for me, it is a profession. I have taken studies to enhance the lives of the children that I care for, everything from program planning to childhood development. I provide care for other people's children in my home. I plan out a curriculum, write newsletters, and ensure learning in every moment. I cook meals for them, I teach them everything from potty training and colors, to manners and life skills. I love them and care for them like my own children. Day in and day out.
I used to babysit. On rare occasions, I would go into someone's home to watch their child (or children) for a few short hours. I did this for extra cash. What is involved? Playing a game, watching some tv and going to bed. That's it. Oh I know that there are a lot of babysitters who do a lot more than this, but I have yet to find one.
There is a difference to me. One is a profession, while the other is an occasional job taken for some extra cash. One requires education (which, by the way, more than qualifies me to be a teacher's aide), while the other only requires a bare minimum in safety standards.
To me this is like comparing a chef in a restaurant to a cook at McDonald's. Oh, by the way, when I made that argument, she implied that those two are the same thing too! Good God, if I found out that my stepson was cooking in a restaurant, I'd warn people to stay away! He's great at flipping those burgers, but I'm not sure that he's qualified to make french fries, let alone cook a meal!
Then, this woman attempted to say that by calling myself a Child Care Provider, it was a way to make caring for children into a "business". I have to say, I am so greatly offended by this that I still haven't bothered to comment on it. It is very sad for me to say that the money that you pay to your Friday night Babysitter is more money than I make. I recently learned (while looking for a sitter for my kids) that the going rate for a baby sitter is $10-15/hour....If I work out my monthly wage by the hours that I work, I end up getting a shocking $4.49 for every hour worked (before taxes). That's fabulous. I also get no benefits (like health/dental) and there is no such thing as "sick days" for me. If I take a day off for illness or holidays, I, quite literally, pay for it.
No, I'm not in this for the money. I do it because I love the children. I love them as if they are my own. I miss them on weekends, I cry when it's time for them to move on. I still keep in touch with many of them. They are my extended family.
I don't work for the all mighty dollar, instead, I work for the little heart-felt hugs that I get. The smiles in the morning, the cuddles in the afternoon. The laughter in the park, or the tears over a skinned knee.
A baby sitter I am not and do not want to be. To me, there is a difference, and I am proud to be able to say that I am a Child Care Provider!
3 days ago