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Babysitter wonders if she was wrong to call police when parents didn’t come home all night

Babysitter sitting with toddler
StockPlanets/Getty

What would you do if you were babysitting and the parents didn’t come home all night — and you couldn’t reach them? That’s exactly what happened to a 23-year-old babysitter who posted on Reddit’s “Am I the A**hole” forum, wondering if she made the right choice when she called the police and reported the parents missing when she couldn’t get ahold of them and they weren’t home at 5 a.m. after telling her they’d be back at midnight.

“I (23f) was asked to sit for a date night while the parents went to a wedding yesterday. I was supposed to have a baby boy, 13 weeks old, and his sister, 2 years old, from 5 to 11 p.m. This is not my first time watching either child,” she wrote. “Our evening went as smoothly as it could with a toddler and baby. I got them to bed by 7:30 and started putting the house back together. At 10:15 p.m., I got a text from the parents asking if I could stay until [midnight], and I told them that’s fine and to have fun.”

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She continued, “12:15 rolls around, and I haven’t heard from the parents. I sent a text asking if they’re close and didn’t get a response. I can be pretty anxious, so my mind started thinking they got into an accident or something bad happened. I didn’t hear from them after 5 minutes and then decided to call, but got no answer. 1 a.m. rolls around, and the baby has already woken up to feed again, and I’m just overly anxious at this point. It’s 1 a.m., and I have no one to call to calm me down. I would never assume that a late parent is just a late parent at 1 a.m. So I am just on our city’s Twitter page, where they’ll let you know road conditions and accidents, seeing if something happened within the last hour and a half but nothing.”

The babysitter wrote that by 2 a.m., she had called the parents 15 times and they still hadn’t answered. She stayed up worrying all night, and at 5 a.m., with no sign of the parents and still no answer on their cell phones, she decided to call the police.

“The police showed up at 5:22 a.m. and took a statement from me. I was asked for the parents numbers, and the police asked if I could stay with the kids until they could figure out what exactly they’re going to do,” she wrote. “At this point, the neighbors are outside, and the woman directly next door told me she could stay with them, but I didn’t know their relationship to her, so I told her I’d wait with the kids for a bit. At f*cking 5:48am, they roll up and are greeted by the police. The mom ran into the house, thinking something had happened to the kids, and sighed when she saw they were there.”

The parents explained themselves by saying their phones died and they didn’t know how to get home from the wedding venue without GPS.

The babysitter wrote, “I was fuming! I called them irresponsible and the shittiest parents I’ve ever worked for. I demanded she pay me on the spot, and I left. I got a super long message about how this is my job and I’m a huge asshole for disrespecting them and calling the police. She felt like I could’ve left them with the neighbors or called the emergency contacts, not the police.”

The babysitter asked Reddit if she was the a**hole in this situation, and wow.

First off, to clarify, she added that the emergency contacts the parents left her were “mom’s parents who are a 6 hour plane ride away, their pediatricians office, and 911 … I felt like 911 would be best in this case.” Yep, that checks out.

Thankfully, the comments are largely on the babysitter’s side.

“NTA (not the a**hole),” the top-voted comment says. “You actually did the right and safest thing. Also it’s 2024, who in this day and age doesn’t have either a portable charger or car phone charger? They are parents. They should have been prepared for their phone dying.”

Another highly rated comment reads, “The mom is lying and toxic. She’s lying because she could have purchased a phone charger at any gas station. THEY PASSED OUT AT THE WEDDING AND DON’T WANT TO FACE THE CONSEQUENCES. What do you want to bet if you pulled the body cam you would find some more lies such as, ‘we told her it was overnight’.”

Yet another adds, “You didn’t hear from them for at least 6-7 hours and they didn’t get there till ALMOST 6 am?? Yea I would have called the cops too. And if they were truly driving for almost 7 hours trying to get home why couldn’t they stop and get a charger?”

And another: “NTA. Both of their phones died and they spent six hours trying to find their way home? I seriously doubt that. They are wildly irresponsible and disrespectful. You shouldn’t babysit for them again.”

In fact, none of the top comments are on the parents’ side, which is correct. These parents were clearly and obviously in the wrong. Here’s hoping they learn from this and don’t treat their next babysitter this way — because they’ll definitely have to find a new babysitter after this.