There’s nothing more beautiful or wonderful in this world than bringing a new baby home. The tiny toes and the five fingers that wrap around your one are a moment all of us parents cherish. But there does come a time where you have to hand that beautiful bundle of baby over to someone else, whether it be for a few hours or to go back to work or just to give yourself a much needed break.
The anxiety new parents feel when trying to find a babysitter or nanny is real. I have three daughters who are all older and I still have a hard time trusting someone with them. But finding a babysitter or nanny has gotten easier over the years. If you’re smart and diligent, you can find one you trust to leave your new baby with!
If you’re stressing out about the end of your maternity leave or an upcoming date night, don’t worry. Here are five tips for finding a nanny or babysitter you’re comfortable leaving your littlest pride and joy with.
Tip #1: Ask friends for recommendations
The nanny I had for my oldest when she was born came highly recommended from another mom I knew and trusted. I interviewed her three times, called countless times, and had to acclimate myself to her form of communication and how she thought about childcare.
By the time I headed back to work, I was able to hand my little baby girl over with less anxiety than I thought I would have. She was easy to contact, honest about any struggles, and listened to my fears.
I had my daughter with her for over a year before I quit work to stay home with my girls — and I still have fond memories of her.
Tip #2: Use online resources to research nannies & babysitters
Care.com, SitterCity, and Angie’s List offer many names and references for the parent looking for a caregiver. Care.com offers five different types of background checks, and both companies also recommend following up on your potential new nanny’s references.
However, if you watch the news, sometimes stories come out about people found on these sites that aren’t great. So, taking the time to truly investigate someone’s background is essential when using an online source.
You can get a customized background check from sites like Trustify for almost anyone. This article, from Momtastic.com, has some great advice and additional links to services that can help you check out the nanny or babysitter you want in your home with your most precious children.
Luckily, as a mom, I’ve never had to use one of these services. I rarely use a sitter but when I do, I have a plethora of trustworthy teens in my neighborhood. But if I were to use these, I would spend more money investigating the people I hire than paying them to sit!
Tip #3: Talk to a local daycare center
If you’re wanting a private nanny or a sitter, sometimes asking around at the local daycare centers can help. Most reputable daycare centers have run background checks on employees already.
So, if you’re looking for a sitter on a Saturday night, they might have the perfect candidate. Or, they may know local nannies who left their information at the center in case people are looking!
Tip #4: Check your church
For years I worked Sunday mornings in the church daycare. Not only was it extra spending money, but I also met parents looking for reliable childcare after church and on weekends.
My church did a standard background check on me, which was awesome, and then parents did a further one, which was fine with me. I found a lot of extra work that way and parents found someone they could trust with their tiniest of babies!
Tip #5: Go with your gut
I’ve been very lucky in my childcare needs now, but in the beginning finding someone for my new baby wasn’t easy.
I found my nanny and then a mommy’s helper when all my girls were toddlers after a long search. Several women seemed great on paper but my motherly instinct told me no. If my gut gives me grief, I automatically move on.
We moms have that sixth sense and we shouldn’t ignore it no matter how badly we need to leave our kids with someone. So listen to your instincts, do the background checks, and check in often with whomever you hired. If you do, handing that new baby over can be easier than you think.
Your turn! Do you have any tips for parents searching for a new babysitter or nanny? What should they do to ensure their child’s safety?