I'm not sure what's fair in this situation....
April 1, 2011 1:27pm CST
I have been watching a 2 year old for over a year now. His mom and I get along just fine, and I've very rarely had to tell her I couldn't make it. When I first started working for her I made $10 and worked around 15 hours every two weeks. In January she knocked me down to $7 an hour (she wanted to only pay me $6 an hour, she said because it was "fair") and even though I'm working every week now, I usually only get 1 or 2 days and usually no more than 3 or 4 hours. This week I only made $18. She is now looking into getting a new full time job and needs me for 50 hours a week, not only to watch the 2 year old, but to use my car to pick up his 11 year old sister from school every day. I told her I'd work for $6, well under minimum wage. I figured she'd talk me down a little and I get that, but she is now telling me the most she'll pay me is $125 a week, to watch both kids and pick her daughter up from school. She said it was what people are usually charging. First of all, who works 50 hours a week for only $100? Also, do they factor in having to go pick up a child from school, having to use their own car? I told her I'd work it for now, but she should consider children's cabinet for the 2 year old and just having me pick up the 11 year old. She and I haven't decided anything yet, because she is not sure about even taking this new job. I can't work for 50 hours a week and being paid that low. Did I do the right thing? Am I expecting too much? Advice?
1 Apr 11
What is the minimum wage where you are? No one should work for less than $300/week, even at $10/hr. That should be $500 if you're working 50 hours at that rate. How far is the school from the house? This is a key factor that that part of the equation. It's not fair for you to work so many hours and not get paid properly. Even at $6/hr, that's $300. I would look for a better job if I were you.
1 Apr 11
So give her the option to find someone else in 3 weeks, but only if you know for sure you have something lined up. $6/hr is fair I think. Her problem will be that she wont find anyone to work for that wage, especially with 2 children, both needing full time care when they are home. Neither of them are old enough to be left by themselves safely.
• United States
3 Aug 11
I am a parent, and I pay for childcare, and I understand her point of view, but also I understand yours. I pay $200 per week for the two that I need care for right now. I think that she shouldn't have to hand over her entire check to a sitter, but also, I feel that if it was on the other foot, she most definitely wouldn't work that many hours for the small amount she is paying you. Nobody would do my childcare in my town for any lower than 200 a week. If she can't afford to pay the sitter a decent wage, then she should probably reconsider having a job with so many hours. At one point, I couldn't afford childcare anymore, so I worked from home for almost 3 years. She has options, and so do you.
• United States
3 May 11
I think you should look at it from her point of view. There's no sense in her having a job if she needs to hand over her entire paycheck to you in order to watch her kids. I understand it may not seem fair to you.. but as a working mom I see her point of view better. I would feel it's pointless to work if I have to pay my babysitter more than I actually bring home (factor in taxes she looses from her paycheck, and gas for her to get to and from work everyday, food, work clothes, etc.). Not to mention she needs extra income after what she pays you in order to pay her bills etc. If you want to earn a bit more, why not take on more kids?