10 Reasons Fathers CAN Be Referred to as Babysitters

Many women’s claws come out and they assume their ass-kickin’ Matrix stance when they hear some gal say her husband is babysitting.


This man is a father – his children’s legal guardian for flip’s sake.  He. Is. Not. Babysitting.

True dat.  But a lot of the time, it feels like he might as well be.

Here’s why:

1. It’s a business arrangement.  You might not have to stick some Jacksons in his waistband, but you’ll pay.  Whether it’s a night out with the guys, keeping your yap shut when he ignores the dirty dishes (again!) or some major baum-chicka-wow-wow time, you owe him for his services.

2. You feel like you’re overindulging.  Given the pay arrangement outlined above you’ve got to ask yourself, “Can I really afford this?

3. They are only fully employed when you aren’t there or are on your deathbed. Literally on your deathbed.  If you are home and not lying in bed with several broken bones and oozing sores someone’s going to ask you to do something.

4. You leave a ton of instructions.  You want to make their life easier by making sure they know the schedule, the rules, and things like So-and-so likes her hot-dogs peeled and cut into ½ inch think semicircles.

5. The fear factor.  While you’re gone you envision everything from an army of first responders being dispatched to your doorstep to the kitchen floor carpeted in Doritos.

6. You lay down the law regarding TV, Internet and phone use.  Because some people need reminding that watching a game or surfing the web for hours on end while the kids do God-knows-what is not the best childcare method.

7. Due to unfamiliarity with the house, you put things out where they can’t be missed.  A box of diapers on the kitchen counter seems like overkill. But. . . if someone doesn’t know where you keep fresh tubes of toothpaste should you really leave such matters to chance?

8. Your kids will have a great time doing shit you’d never let them get away with.  Goldfish and fruit snacks for dinner. Playing dress up with Mommy’s keep-your-grubby-hands-off new outfit.  Going to bed two hours late on a school night.  Yes. Yes. And (Dude it’s an effing school night?!) yes.

9. If they clean up and do some laundry you do a happy dance. You didn’t think this was in the job description, so, woo-hoo, this is going above and beyond expectation.

10. Somehow, even when things go not exactly as you’d have liked, everything is fine when you get home. 

If you are one of those women whose husbands totally kill it in taking an equal if not greater share of the housework/childcare load, then shut the front door, and know we envy you.

Make your hubs give Daddy lessons to the rest of our dudes, who dance between being an extra child and a full-fledged partner.

So yeah, technically no father should be called the babysitter.

But if the title fits, go make him a t-shirt.


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    • Me says

      I wish i wasn’t in a position to have to treat my hubby like a child himself and ask for the simplest things like making sure the house doesn’t turn into a hurricane, or to try not to leave our daughter in front of the TV for hours on end. but i will admit he is learning.

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  1. Amber says

    Wow. This blog post makes me want to go give my husband a big hug. Seriously, if I was married to a guy like you describe above, I’d be divorced. I have no time to take care of a 3rd child.

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    • Nilzed says

      I was married to a guy like that. His 3rd wife just left him. Yeah, useless.

      My now husband may not parent exactly as I do, but he is no better or worse. Did he do as much housekeeping as I would have when I had to be gone for two weeks? No, but he was doing his best to do his actual job from home in between caring for his son. And besides, in any given 2 weeks, there is plenty I might not have accomplished (she said, looking at the pile of unfolded laundry and the dark, depressingly still decorated Christmas tree piled up while husband has been gone almost 2 weeks)

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      • Keesha Beckford says

        Nilzed — you totally get where I’m coming from. My husband is a great dad, despite what folks may infer from this post. It’s just that I am super neurotic and he is more relaxed. Recognizing this stylistic difference (and being able to laugh at it) is a great thing! Thank you!

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        • Me says

          Keesha: Well I am not neurotic and if you have to ask a father of his own children to get them to bed on a school night? -well, I dont think that’s neurotic. And when you’re living it everyday, it isnt humorous. but the article is great – very entertaining and well done!

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    • Katie says

      Agreed. I just can’t find the humor in the whole “my husband hasn’t the first clue how to be a responsible parent” schtick. When I read things like, “If my husband watches the kids, I have to repay him with sex,” I feel like your husband has seriously misunderstood his responsibilities as a father and as a husband. This isn’t cute. It’s sad.

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    • TheHeadacheslayer says

      Right there with you Amber! If a father doesn’t know how to take care of his own kids….that’s really sad. Heck my husband could give complete tutorials on cloth diapers ;) If I could clone him…I’d be richer than Oprah ;)

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  2. jetts31 says

    If my wife were this overbearing, lacked the confidence in my parenting ability, or thought it necessary to treat me like a child, we would have serious problems. I can’t believe there are still Dads out there that are this inept?

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    • Keesha Beckford says

      Thanks for commenting. Some of it is genuine ineptitude, but some of the problem is the Controlfreakitis and IWD (Intense Worry Disease) that affects so many moms. That and two different styles of parenting — one more “relaxed” and one more “hands on” and there you have it…

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      • jetts31 says

        Its was a good read from the fact that I was engaged immediately. I think I may have overreacted initially about it too. There are certainly enough parents out there who embody ineptitude and some who can go overboard too. Cheers.

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    • Honey bear says

      This! A thousand times, this! Seriously, Dads don’t want to be involved because Momzilla won’t let him do anything if it isn’t exactly how she’d do it. Which is usually overly rigid and unyielding.

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  3. Andie says

    My husband is pretty awesome. Through the week, he works. It’s ALL me whether I want it to be or not. On the weekends, he helps a ton (mainly because I am tired), but still manages to keep his “guy pants” on. I’ll catch him watching football or catching up on Hulu on the computer. I figured he works a lot and deserves some “me” time. Nobody is perfect, though. However, there are some dads out there who don’t do anything but ignore their kids by hanging on their phone all the time or off in another room 98% of the time. The only time these dads show their faces is when there is a hot meal presented to them on the table. That, to me, is ridiculous and a complete waste. Enjoy your children!!

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  4. Shannon says

    lol this is too funny and also VERY true! When I was with my ex (my son’s father) I remember him asking his dad if he ever had to babysit him when he was little. His dad replied “Babysit?! Hello its your child, you aren’t babysitting them!” I try not to even bother leaving my 2 year old home with my husband, the last time I did, he fell asleep and when I got home and woke him up he asked me when I was leaving! In the mean time, my daughter had dumped baby powder all over the living room! And I was only gone an hour! Imagine how it would have been if I was gone longer than that?!

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  5. Hollow tree ventures says

    Yes to ALL of this – they’re the most expensive, hard to schedule babysitters in town. Thanks for the laugh! I needed the entertainment, since I know I won’t be leaving the house any time soon. ;)

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  6. Megan says

    Yep, this is my house. My husband is a great dad and certainly does more than previous generations did, but he go back and forth between being another child and an actual partner. That said, I get indignant when people refer to him “babysitting.” I correct them with, “No he’s taking care of his children.”

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