Woman Conflicted After Refusing To Sit For Single Mom Who Lied About Disabled Son

A Redditor recently felt some guilt after backing out of a babysitting agreement, so she sought out some online help with her feelings.

She had good reason: the kid she'd be babysitting for is disabled and uses a wheelchair, and his mom lied about the severity of the condition.

Fortunately, there's a subreddit dedicated to determining whether someone is a jerk or not, so she posed her question to a jury of her Reddit peers.

"I [F19] started working as a babysitter recently as I do during this time of year every year. I received a call from a single mother wanting me to babysit her kids while she goes to work from 8am to 6pm."

Unsplash | Daniel Thomas

It starts out normally enough.

"She introduced me to her 2 kids (7,4) they were super nice and polite. We talked about schedules/routines/their regular rules and we agreed on almost everything. First day of the job, I arrived at her place at 7:30 and I was puzzled when I saw a kid in a wheelchair."

"I asked who he was and she said that this was her 'severely' disabled 11-year-old son."

This is obviously where things took a turn.

"I asked if she was expecting me to look after him too. And she said he was part of the deal but he wasn't, I didn't know about him and did not think I was going to have to care for a disabled child."

Responsibilities would include changing him and feeding him at certain times.

Unsplash | marianne bos

"She said she wouldn't be worried as long as I'm an adult besides that it's like caring for an infant and asked me if I had never changed a diaper before. But this is different, this is completely different. I blatantly said that this doesn't work for me and decided to not babysit for her."

OP's mom sided against her.

When OP got home, even her own mom said she was "acting cowardly and selfishly."

"I asked mom, 'are you serious?' and she responded by asking me to put myself in her shoes...but she wanted me to care for a severely disabled child."

"Morally it was a jerk move for just quitting without giving her chance to find a replacement."

OP is hard on herself here, which is understandable, but she wanted to know what others thought.

Surprise, surprise: an overwhelming number of respondents concluded that she wasn't, in fact, acting unreasonably.

"She tricked you. She made it out to be only two children, and then at the last second springs up not only a 3rd child but a disabled child."

"She literally hid this poor kid away when you did your first visit, because she knew a normal babysitter wouldn't take her," concluded one commenter. "There is a reason why she cant [have] someone watch her children. She lies and doesn't want to pay for a proper caregiver for her child."

"She knew exactly what she was doing, care like that is a lot and cost a lot more and she was lying to rope you into doing something you neither wanted to do or are qualified to do."

Unsplash | Anthony Tran

"That's like hiring someone to load lorries and when they get there telling them they'll have to drive them as well," wrote one commenter who definitely thinks that OP was reasonable.

"I work with students with disabilities as a special education teacher."

Unsplash | Marcelo Cidrack

"You have to be specially trained to do a lift safely to transfer a paralyzed individual out of wheelchair," wrote someone who knows what they're talking about. "At 11 years old the kiddo probably weighs enough that it would require a two-man lift to do it."

"Moreover, she TRAINED those kids to lie, as well."

One Redditor points out that the mom lied, and also made her kids lie as well, writing, "'Don't mention Timmy! Remember, when you talk about things we do as a family, it's just you, you, and me. Don't show her anything that would reveal Timmy's existence. Don't let her look in the closet. Don't let her look in the bathroom! She'll see the grab bars.'"

"She is in a tough spot and all that, but her attempts to manipulate and bully you into caring for her disabled son despite your assertion you couldn’t, does make her [a jerk]."

Unsplash | Matteo Vistocco

Everyone in the thread seems to agree that OP was right to leave the babysitting gig.

What do you think? It's hard not to sympathize for the mom, but it's also tough to expect OP to just go ahead with things. Would you have done the same thing in her place?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.

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