My friend Kim uses a babysitter, Roxanne, a few times a week so she can get all her errands done without having to drag her two babies around with her. I've met Roxanne, and while she's great with kids, I'm afraid of her. All the moms in our playgroup are.
Roxanne scolded Kim for giving her kids cereal bars that contained high fructose corn syrup. Kim isn't the type to worry about that particular ingredient, but she searched high and low for some breakfast bars that Roxanne would deem suitable. Kim didn't do it for her kids, she did it for Roxanne.
Another time, Kim left the groceries out when she got home from shopping so she could tend to her kids. Roxanne tsked tsked her and started unloading them, saying, "This milk has got to get into the refrigerator." And Roxanne raises her eyebrows whenever Kim lets her baby cry in her crib.
Amy Hatch over at ParentDish says she has a great babysitter who also does light housekeeping. Still she asks, "So why do I always feel like such a jerk when I leave a mess in the kitchen when she shows up in the morning? Why do I rush around and hide the pan I made nachos in at 9 p.m. the night before, and was too tired to clean before bed? Why do I feel like she goes home and tells her Ugg-wearing roommates that she works for a big fat piggy? A piggy who lets her kids eat lollipops at 9 a.m.?"
It turns out that a lot of moms feel like their babysitters are judging them. It may or may not be true—it could be that we're just much too hard on ourselves.
Do you feel like your babysitter judges your parenting and housekeeping?