Dad Expects 16-Year-Old Late-Night Babysitter To Set Alarms So She Can Tend To His Crying Baby

Most people argued that his expectations were unrealistic for a teenager.

teenage babysitter, baby New Africa / Shutterstock

A concerned father began to worry about the well-being of his children after their teen babysitter accidentally slept through one of them crying for half an hour.

However, after he confronted her about the matter, his wife told him that he was “out of line” and had unrealistic expectations for their babysitter.

Now, the father is asking others if he was within his rights to request the babysitter keep herself awake throughout the night so that she could tend to the children should they wake up crying.


The dad requested that his 16-year-old babysitter set alarms throughout the night in case the baby cried.

Sharing his story on Reddit, the father revealed that he and his wife share three children together, ages 7, 4, and 9 months. Since he works a demanding job in the medical field and his wife often works night shifts, they need a babysitter to look after the children at night.

teen sleeping on couch DimaBerlin / Shutterstock


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“We just got a new babysitter a few months ago after the one we had for two years moved for college,” the man wrote. “Our new babysitter is only 16, but she had been babysitting one of my co-worker's children for a while, and I trust him.”

Recently, the man and his wife were both working night shifts while the babysitter watched their children. Sometime during the night, the man happened to glance at footage obtained from one of the nanny cams he set up.

“I saw on the camera that our babysitter was asleep on the couch, and the baby had woken up and was crying for almost 30 minutes while she slept,” he shared. 


The man admitted that what he saw “bothered him quite a bit.” 

“So, without talking to my wife, when I got home in the morning, I had told my babysitter that maybe she should set alarms throughout the night to make sure she’s awake since the baby monitor didn’t wake her and that it was not okay for her to leave the baby crying like that,” he wrote.

However, the babysitter was not on board with his request and told his wife what he had said to her.


“My wife is really upset with me because ‘She’s only 16’ and what I was asking is unreasonable and that this has never happened before,” the man wrote.

The man’s wife believed that he should have talked to her first and that the instance could have been a “learning experience” for the babysitter. “I’m really not worried about a learning experience but am worried about the fact if my children are cared for properly,” the man confessed.

He asked others if his reaction was truly unreasonable to expect from a teenager, or if it was justified.

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Most people believed that the man’s request was too much to expect from a teenager and that he and his wife should hire a night nanny instead. 

“If you want someone awake all night then you need to hire an adult! This child you hired needs to sleep at night so she can go to school and learn during the day. How can you someone in the medical field not understand how important sleep is to a growing body and brain?!” one Redditor commented.

“The correct answer would be that you need a new baby monitor that will wake her up not for her to set an alarm that goes off every so often all night. If that's no acceptable to you then it's time to hire an overnight nanny who is an adult instead of hiring a child to watch children,” another user wrote.

“This is a lot for a 16-year-old. Find a new babysitter or hire a nanny,” another user noted. 

night nanny Halinskyi Max / Shutterstock


Given the amount of change their bodies go through and how busy they are keeping up with school and extracurriculars, it makes sense that a teenager would sleep through a baby’s cries at night.

According to The American Academy of Sleep Medicine, teenagers 13–18 years old should sleep at least 8–10 hours per 24 hours. Expecting them to wake up every hour to tend to a crying baby is just cruel.

Instead of hiring a teenage babysitter who is likely still in high school and has other daytime responsibilities, the man and his wife should consider hiring a night nanny who has experience with babies waking up throughout the night.


A child cannot be expected to handle other children all night on their own.

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.