Sitter Needed

Dear Sitter Needed,

When looking for a babysitter, identify someone who has been trained in trauma or is open to being trained by you. Set clear expectations as to how you want the sitter to interact with your children, stressing that maintaining the same structure will help your child transition to your leaving and your returning. It is suggested that if the babysitter is unknown to your child that you have her/him over prior to your date to “hang out” with the family a time or two. That way, you are not abandoning him/her to a stranger. Tell your child when you will be home, and the first time or two, check in by phone or face time while you are away.

If your child demonstrates a high level of anxiety over your going, you might leave them with a favorite necklace or bracelet and ask them to care for it while you’re gone. This is a subtle reminder that you’ll be back. Remember, keeping your marriage strong is important – you can’t give what you don’t have!  Leaving and returning is a good exercise in trust for your child and can strengthen your relationship.


For children and families,