A Reddit user shared a story about how he wants to ask for compensation for a ‘favor’ given to his wife’s friend. His wife wants him to watch her friend’s toddler all day, every day, for free as a “favor.”
The OP is a stay-at-home dad taking care of an 18-month daughter. His wife approached him one day and asked him if he could do a favor with one of her work friends. She wanted him to watch after her 4-year-old daughter since she had run into an issue with her daycare.
The OP was happy to help as he figured the 4-year-old could play with his daughter. The day ended well and was uneventful despite the OP not having any babysitting skills. The OP is also not licensed to run a daycare.
The next day when the OP woke up, he was surprised to find the 4-year-kid had been dropped off again. No one had asked him to take care of the kid for a second day. They simply assumed he would.
The OP did not understand the work friend’s intentions, but it seemed he was set to babysit her kid 9 hours a day for five days a week. He did not know what the favor he agreed to entailed or how long the engagement was supposed to last.
It does not seem like the work friend is looking for another babysitter or daycare, and the OP is concerned that he has become her babysitter without his consent.
No Conversation Yet
He has not had a chance to have a conversation to clear things up. Now that he realizes that the favor turned into a full-time job, he wants to have clear terms of engagement.
The OP turned to Reddit Community to hear their opinion on whether he should seek compensation if he discovers the work friend is not looking for a babysitter or whether he should tell her to look for someone else if she does not want to pay him.
The Masses Weigh In
The masses overwhelmingly supported the OP, and most of them asked him to seek compensation for the service as it had graduated from being a favor to a full-time engagement.
“A ‘favor’ would be (for example) if you agreed to watch her for a couple of hours while her mother went to a doctor’s appointment. This isn’t a favor; this is free babysitting, which you did not agree to. I would definitely bring up some kind of compensation,” one user advised.
A Favor Is Once or Twice
Another user said, “A favor is once or twice while she is looking for new arrangements or to run to do an errand. Sounds like your wife signed you up to be the babysitter. Clarify what this “favor” really is. You should most certainly be compensated for watching a kid 9 hours a day/5 days a week.”
One pointed out that babysitters are not cheap and he should charge accordingly, “If this friend needs child care for more than this week, then set your rate. Make it high. Find out what private nanny’s charge. Cause this is a HUGE ask.”
Don’t Ask for Compensation
A user told the OP to be careful because if he asked for compensation, he should be ready to buy some form of insurance because he would be taking on a risk, “If OP is willing to babysit for a compensation in his own house, then he needs to consider some sort of insurance, because kids aren’t mummies or statues, and they might break something while playing, or running, and end up hurting a finger, a toe, or whatever.”
Others noted out that OP did not get clear directives from his wife or her work friend, hence the confusion. One said, “This just sounds like a breakdown in communication. But, I’m not sure if the breakdown is between you and your wife or your wife and her work friend. You need to talk to your wife and clear this up.”
Another blamed the OP’s wife, saying, “Whether the communication failure is accidental or intentional, your wife is in the middle of it. It may come to a direct conversation between you and your wife’s coworker, but step 1 is a long and solid conversation with your wife.”
They Are Taking Advantage of You
A user pointed out that the lack of communication on the friend’s side could be misconstrued as taking advantage of the OP, “You didn’t sign up for this, you were surprised to see the child there a second time. You all need to be very clear what your wife’s friend wants and what you are willing to do. People are making assumptions here and you are going to be taken advantage of if you aren’t careful.”
Child Care Isn’t Free
Another user was quick to agree with this sentiment, “You are being taken advantage of. The issue with the original day care was probably that she didn’t want to pay the cost – daycare is not cheap. But it certainly should not it be free because you were kind enough to do it one day on an emergency basis.”
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This article was produced and syndicated by A Dime Saved.