When you decide you need to get out of the house for a bit, whether it's on your own for some "me time," on a date with your man, or to dinner with a bestie, getting out the door while leaving your littles with a sitter is not always an easy task.The truth is a lot of parents struggle with the idea of leaving their kids behind to be watched by someone who isn't a parent or relative, and it can be hard to feel like you're not traumatizing your babes when they're screaming before you close the front door. Yikes. So what are some things we can do for our kids to prep them before a babysitter even shows up? P.S. If you're also wondering what it is you can expect from a sitter when they're with your kids, check out this post for the 411. Here are a few things that have helped our kids to get used to babysitters and make going out easier on everyone!
Start With Someone They KnowThis one is sometimes easier said than done depending on how close you are to any family, but I recommend having your kids' first experience with a sitter to be with a family member or a close friend that the child is used to seeing or has a relationship with. If they're seeing a familiar face, it will lessen the blow when they get the idea that you're not going to be sticking around. I say do this a few times before you get a babysitter, and work on different times of day (like a lunch date and then a later night out) to get your child used to the concept that no matter when you leave, you'll be back! This is a great reason to have a portable crib like the lightweight and super easy-to-use Nuna Sena Mini Playard. So if you're dropping your babe off at your mom's, you won't have to worry about where they'll be sleeping while you're gone.
Even though every babe is going to be so different, and depending on whether you're bottle or breastfeeding, your child will demand a certain amount of your time/attention, but I think the sooner you get your child used to a babysitter, the easier it will be down the road. Now don't get me wrong, when they hit that clingy, separation anxiety phase, there's really no prep in the world that can tame that beast, but you can at least make sure babysitters aren't a foreign concept at the same time they're stressing every minute they're not in your lap. I think that this is important for parents, as well as kids, because it will help you to feel comfortable leaving your child with people you can trust without stressing the entire time you are gone that something horrible is going to happen. If you're a stresser and you're going to be leaving at night while they're asleep, then getting a monitor like the Owlet V2 Smart Sock will allow you to have a link to your little (through your phone) even when you're not at home. Babysitting is a practice-makes-perfect thing for both your kids and you!