Work From Home Does NOT Mean FREE Babysitting

Let’s get one thing straight, work from home does not mean free babysitting.

We’re clear?


I recently received a phone call from a friend that was very upsetting.

We’ll call her Mrs. I. B. Rude so not to offend anyone. 😉

It went a little something like this…

Ring, Ring!

Me: Hello?

 Mrs. Rude: Hi! What’s up?

Me: I briefly fill her in on the top 5 news items around here as we haven’t spoken for a bit. I asked after her family.

Mrs. Rude: Oh these kids are driving me crazy! I’m going to swing by in a bit, you don’t mind watching them, I have a nail appointment in Camarillo.

Me: I have to work until my kids get out at 3. If you bring them over about 3:30 my kiddos would love to see them.

Mrs. Rude: I HAVE an appointment already and I can’t change it. It’s not like you really are doing anything. Can’t you just help out a friend?

Me: We’ve have a lot of major expenses lately, I HAVE to work so I can pay my bills and feed my people. Where is Ms. Mary Poppins? (Her part time nanny housekeeper)

Mrs. Rude: Gets mad and barks at me for being an awful friend and tells me that I’m the biggest selfish loser, perhaps in words a bit more spicy. Yes folks… all because I have to work and can not watch her out of control 2 and 4 year olds. Then tried to go the route of needing to save money so she cut back the nanny hours.

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE helping a friend or having my children’s friends over BUT I do deserve to have my working boundaries respected and to be treated as a friend not hired help.

In an emergency, I’d drop anything and everything in a red hot second to take care of what ever needed to be covered for someone in crisis.

Nail appointments DO NOT constitute an emergency on my part and further more why is the nail salon of choice 30 minutes away?

Me:So that means my day is supposed to stop for 4 hours because you need a break? Work from home does not mean free babysitting! I didn’t realize that you felt my work is just some stupid thing I talk about to justify why I can’t go out and fetch coffee and shop with you. I’m working over 60 hours a week! I am lucky to be able to work from home for the most part but that is also a tremendous burden as well. On top of all the hours I put in, I still have to be a full time stay at home mom too! We can’t afford a lawn mowing man, house keeper, laundry service, personal shopper, driver, and because we can’t afford to eat out I have to cook from scratch every single meal I prepare. It all falls to me because I am physically here. It’s a lot to juggle. I love the sacrifices we make to have the life we want but it’s OURS not YOURS. I’m sorry but I will not accept your disrespect. If you can afford to get your nails done, you can not cry poor to me… you have a freakin’ nanny!? If you would like my help, I’d be happy to keep the kids after 3:30 or you could drop them off at Mr. Rude’s office.

Mrs. Rude: You know Mr. Rude wouldn’t allow it!

Me: Yes and I can’t allow you to drop them off at my office until after 3:30.

Mrs. Rude: Click!

She hung up on me.

Something tells me that we’ll not be speaking any time soon.

Sadly, I’m not sorry for that. Sometimes it’s better to purge those takers and people who can not respect boundaries out of our lives.

Work from home does not mean free babysitting.

A couple years ago the Handsome Prince asked me to watch a co-worker/friend’s baby 1 day per week for a few weeks so they could find a permanent solution. Their boss was a close family memeber so it was pitched to me that I’d be doing everyone a favor, the friend and the company since the mom kept having to leave work to get her daughter as she left her in VERY unfit care.

Really? Heroin addicts don’t make good babysitters? Please tell me more about your very poor choices.

I agreed and was thrilled to have a baby around.

1 turned into 2 days per week, 2 turned into 4 days per week.

Then an overnight so they could go out and party.

They keep crying poor and said the few dollars here and there were all they could spare.

I was offered a promotion at my job that would no longer allow me to care for the baby.

I turned it down because the Handsome Prince and I felt like the situation going on with the baby’s family was SO not good that we could possibly be the difference to keep this baby in a safe situation.

We made sacrifices to make this work.

12 hours per day 4-5 days each week for several months… my heart was invested in this little girl.

Then the Handsome Prince came home one day and dropped the bomb.

This whole time that “friend” had been crying poor to me was plunking over $600 per month into her retirement fund. She justified it as the company matches what they put in so screw me now so they can sit on a beach getting loaded later.

I was shocked!

They chose to use me and felt like it was right that they not pay for the life that they are living right now but prepare for over 40 years from now. I know when you tattoo your face it’s hard to keep a good paying job but that simply is not my fault. I didn’t mame you, you did.

I was so hurt.

I stopped watching the baby.

They got pregnant again shortly after. I’m not shocked as she complained openly that they needed one more to qualify for any benefits the state or government would give.

Quality people sent to show me how NOT to live my life. :/

Work from home does not mean free babysitting.

I want to help people. I truly enjoy being the hand up to help someone get on better footing.

Yes, at times that does take a toll on me.

Working from home does not mean free babysitting, that I can lead ANOTHER troop, Pack or coach every team but it does means that in crisis I’ll be your right hand gal. Working from home does not mean free babysitting, it means we have made choices and sacrifices carefully to make a life that is functional for us and our children.

Working from home does not mean free babysitting, it means that I’m SUPER busy but if you can respect my “office hours” as I would yours, we’ll be awesome friends.

Working from home has made me have to work harder than ever before.

Silly me, I thought working from my pjs would be a snap.

Instead I got my funky flannel favorites with a heap load of wait a second I need 2 of me or 48 hours per day to kick butt, be awesome, accomplish all, shower and maybe sleep 4 hours in there.

It’s not that I’m a shrew.

That I place work or money above people or relationships.

I can’t stand when people act like they are entitled to my pj’d time.

My time, you’re time, our time is the most precious of gifts we can give to one another!

You can be repaid, things can be repaired, you can be made whole but you can not rewind and get the time you invested back.

It’s probably a good thing. I’d have rewinded the clock a bunch of times when I did or said something stupid, hurtful or on a few major life events. Those things are a part of who I am and should never be rewinded past and redone.

I learned. I practice setting better clearer boundaries.

People are pushy and will walk all over you if you don’t set firm clear lines.

I grew from the things that cut deeply. I understand now that it’s okay to put yourself and your family first. Anyone that can not accept that we have responsibilities that we need to honor and see through before we are available to play, does not deserve to be our playmate. 

I am very lucky to work from home and be available to our children.

I created it. I worked my rear off to be able to work mostly from home.

It’s our sacrifices that keep me here and I am grateful.

Ours, not anyone else’s but ours.

Thanks for listening…

I feel better. 🙂

Remember: Work from home does not mean free babysitting!

Getting my knickers out of a twist,

Meg xoxo

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  1. Good point Meg. I am not sure why others assume because you are home that means you don’t have work to do or get done. I have even gone as far as acknowledged that I am not the fulltime housekeeper ….lol


  2. I get the same thing all the freaking time! I don’t work from home, I’m a Stay at Home Mom, but the expectation is that just because I’m home, I’m free to babysit 24/7. And I’m a pushover, so I always cave and do it. I’ve gotten pretty sick of it.

    Once or twice, whatever, but it has started to get out of control! I already have three of my own monsters to handle, bills to pay, errands to run, cleaning, cooking, school crap, homework, girl scouts, etc… I don’t want to add extra kids to my juggling just because I’m not on the clock somewhere. I’m still BUSY!!!

    • Keisha on May 3, 2013 at 11:53 am

    I feel you. I get the same thing from my friends and family and because we homeschool recently I have had a neighbor who sends notes over with her daughter wanting me to help with her homework, because she doesn’t understand it or she is under the weather, more like lazy! I helped twice last week for almost 2 hrs each time when she sent her daughter over again this week on my son’s birthday I just told her I am sorry I am busy today I am not going to be able to help you. I felt bad saying this to an 11 year old but I can’t do homework for 2 hrs every night with someone elses kid on top of everything else I do!

    • Joy on November 13, 2013 at 7:53 am

    Good for you. That is crazy. Until someone brings this person to the REAL world, if that’s possible since it seems like she has no ability to think about anyone but herself, you are better off without her. That is very difficult, but you can only take so much from The Takers. You are already stretched to capacity with your work, and your family, you shouldn’t have to keep stretching for someone else, who probably doesn’t help you back in any way.

  3. That is horrible! What a jerk friend, she is selfish b*#(%. I am amazed when people do this stuff. I ran into a person last week who said she was going to call me to see if I could watch her daughter for an entire week when she went to California with her boyfriend. I hadn’t seen her in 6 months and even then that was for 5 minutes. We were never friends – our kids went to school together and my daughter doesn’t even go to that school anymore. Unreal. I am glad you stood your ground and said that to her.

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