Woman stands in the doorway with bunch of keys in the keyhole

Babysitter Walked Off Job Because She Thought Boys Were Older Than Parents Said They Were

“Both were taller than me and the older one even had some visible facial hair.”

Setting boundaries can be difficult, especially if you are a teenager working as a babysitter. And in the case of one 19-year-old babysitter, especially if you think the adults who hired you have refused to comply with the boundaries you set from the beginning.

The 19-year-old female babysitter took to Reddit to share her concern about a new family she was asked to babysit for recently. “A week ago, a new family got my numbers from one of the families I babysit for a lot. I told them upfront that I have this rule where I only babysit boys that are 10 and under, but when it comes to girls, the age isn’t an issue for me,” she explained, going on to write that the parents told her their sons were 9 and 10 years old, and so she agreed to watch them so the parents could attend an important engagement kid-free.

“The day came and I went to their house and the dad greeted me then took me to their living room to meet the boys. To my surprise, the boys looked like no 9 and 10 I’ve ever met,” she wrote. “One looked 12 and the other looked [like] he could be 15 or even 16. Both were taller than me and the older one even had some visible facial hair.”

The babysitter went on to ask the mother about the children’s ages, writing that she believed she had been lied to about the ages. The mother insisted that she was telling the truth, but ultimately things devolved and the original poster left without caring for the boys.

“When the mother came down and greeted me, I asked to speak to her in another room and I told her I cannot babysit. I was also truthful about the reason and she was livid,” she shared on Reddit. “We got into a back and forth where I basically said that I feel they lied about the ages and she even said ‘oh so you want me to show you their birth certificates to believe me?’ At this point I was kinda mad because she was immediately livid and I also felt like I was fooled. Anyways, I said ‘Yeah, some proof would help.’”

“She stomped off to the living room and I could hear her tell her husband ‘get this b**** out of my house, I will stay with the boys!’” she added. “I walked out of the kitchen towards the front door and announced ‘I’m leaving!’ before I stepped out.”

“Later that night the mom of the family who recommended me called and was also pretty angry,” she wrote. “I explained that these boys looked so much older than there were said to be and there was no way they weren't lying. She said maybe one is actually 11 but the other is truly 9 and that they just look like they were so much older.”

Even if the boys were as young as their mother said, the babysitter did not feel comfortable caring for “strange boys who were both taller and clearly so much stronger than me doesn’t feel safe, which is why I have the age rule in the first place.”

Reddit users were in her corner. “That rule is for your own safety. The mother should have informed you that they looked much older than their actual age - that is, of course, if they really WERE younger,” wrote one user.

Another added, “You do what you need to do to take care of yourself. You expressed a boundary. They crossed it. Don’t give it another thought.”

“NTA because you felt genuinely uncomfortable in this setting, and you must ALWAYS go with your gut,” one more said. “Your policy about what ages you are comfortable with was stated up front. I think you acted like a right proper business person in this situation.”

Regardless of how old the boys were, every babysitter is allowed to set boundaries. Whether those boundaries are age-related, financial, or behavioral. Even if the parents don’t always like it.