Kids will be kids, and accidents happen, but should you be expected to fork out when your children break something valuable? This mum doesn’t think so.

The single mum of two has just started a new job after working from home for the past couple of years. So she’s enlisted the help of a babysitter to help care for her two children, aged eight and six-years-old.

The 17-year-old babysitter brings her laptop with her to their house so she can study, which the mum says is perfectly fine with her, as long as she’s still keeping an eye on the kids.

“Yesterday, I came home and the babysitter showed me her laptop that got broken by my youngest,” the mum explained on reddit.

“I was shocked I asked how this happened, and she said that she left the laptop in the living room and went to make the kids’ lunch but my youngest grabbed it and ran with it until he dropped it and broke the screen. I said that was horrible and apologised to her but stated it was her fault for leaving the laptop within reach of children.

“She said she thought my kids were old enough to know not to touch others stuff.”

“I explained how they might have thought it belonged to us since it was in our house. She asked if I could pay for it to get fixed but I refused and insisted it was her problem not mine. She ranted about having exams soon and not having enough money to get it fixed. We argued and I had to tell her to go home after she persisted.”

But that wasn’t the end of it. The teenager babysitter’s father has now become in involved, demanding that the expensive tech be fixed, at the expense of the single mum.

“I got a call from her dad basically blaming the whole thing on me, and demanding I pay to get the laptop fixed but I still refused. Now she’s refusing to come again unless I pay her for the laptop repair even though I paid her in advance to watch the kids.”

So who do you think is in the wrong here? Let us know in the comments below. 

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  • I think I would be trying to make a compromise of half and half payment for the repairs. Both sides are in the wrong in my opinion.


  • It’s a tricky one. It was broken while she was at their house, but should she have left it lying around and should she be studying while being paid to watch kids, probably not. I’d be a little annoyed if my babysitter was spending time doing other things while I was paying them, but unless the mum told her not to bring valuables then they might have to pay for at least half.


  • I think the mum should pay at least something towards the repair as her child is not blameless in the situation.


  • This is a tough one. If it was my kid that broke it, I would feel responsible and cover the costs of repair but I can see the mums side of the story as well. Maybe they should just go 50/50.


  • There are pro’s and con’s to this story.
    Depending where the laptop was at the time.


  • Tricky. I do think a six year old should know better than to run around with a laptop, and I don’t buy the “he thought it was ours” excuse. I bet the mum would be angry if it was HER laptop that got damaged. Perhaps the mum should offer to pay half of the repair or replacement.


  • Ooh, this is tricky. Is there a compromise? Does the child understand what he did was wrong? Should the babysitter be studying whilst babysitting? This is a mess. I don’t think I can provide an insightful answer unless I was there to understand the full situation.


  • Yeah, No. The babysitter is paid to be the responsible one. If she can’t look after her own laptop, how is she even responsible enough to look after the children?


  • What is “out of reach”? Being locked away 1.5m from the ground? Being realistic, the child was interested to play with the laptop, and if the laptop was visible, the child could have easily climbed on a chair or other to get it. Kids find a way. We’re not talking about a toddler. If my child broke something of someone else’s it would be my responsibility to repair/replace, not the responsibility of the other person.


  • Did the mum talk to her son, to see what he says happened with the computer? If it was me, I wouldn’t be wanting to pay the full repair cost. There is responsibility both ways though. Mmmm, seeing the mum has already paid the babysitter, ahead, seems like they have part payment to go towards fixing the laptop.


  • While I think the babysitter should have been a bit more responsible for her laptop and shouldn’t havve left it lying around, I think that the mum should be paying at least half of the repairs. Her child picked it up and then started running around with it. They should know better. It might be different if it was on the bench and got knocked off by mistake or something but when the child is running around with it, I think it makes it the mum’s responsiblity to get it repaired.


  • It was an accident, they should both pay half each.


  • I agree it was silly on both sides and they should go halvies.


  • The babysitter shouldn’t have left the computer where the kids could reach it but the kids should have known better than to touch something that wasn’t there’s. I think the best thing would be to pay half each and find another babysitter who will concentrate only on the children.


  • Think it’s a life lesson for all here. Mum shouldn’t of allowed babysitter to bring a laptop in the first place. Babysitter needs to take some responsibility for her belongings also she’s getting paid to be with the kids not study. The child is old enough to know better and if it was my child they would be paying for it out of their savings. Think the Mum and child need to pay at least 3/4


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