I took my baby on my honeymoon. It wasn't just that I didn't know anyone willing to watch an infant; as a mom, the idea of letting someone watch my baby also frightened me a bit. I felt no different with my second baby, despite desperately needing a break often in those first months. Now pregnant with my third, with two rowdy toddler boys, I know that I will not want, but need a sitter on occasion to get a break in the interest of my sanity while my baby is, well, a baby. If you're like me and a little uneasy about infant sitters, here are a few things to keep in mind…
How young is too young for a sitter?
You can have a baby sitter from the first day your baby is born-if you feel comfortable. You determine how old is old enough. Think about it this way; if you were to get a sitter would you relax and have fun, or would you still be so worried about the baby that you'd stay stressed and be miserable? Until you can answer that with the positive result, you're not ready for a sitter whether your baby is or not.
Tips to help your comfort level:
Find an awesome sitter. The biggest factor in feeling comfortable with leaving your baby with someone else is feeling entirely, unquestionably comfortable with that person. It can be hard to find a baby sitter, but if you don't have complete confidence in say, your teenage cousin, don't do it. Find someone that in your mind if you died tomorrow, you'd be OK with raising your children.
Start slow. Don't just jump right into an overnight ordeal, no matter how good a full night of sleep sounds. Start off with an hour or so. This gets you used to having the baby not with you, the baby used to being with the sitter, and helps the sitter see possible problems that could arise that are better found now than at midnight when you've had a few relaxing cocktails. As time passes you can lengthen sitter visits for what you need.
Don't be afraid to check in. I know, all the movies show these stereotypical overly worried moms calling the sitter every 5 minutes, but seriously, if a quick call or even text makes you feel better so you can relax you shouldn't feel weird by that, just do it and get on with your break.
Chances are none of the above are going to make you entirely comfortable with leaving your baby with a sitter at first, but I hope they help make your free time just a touch more relaxed.You may also enjoy: