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Finding a Babysitter For Your Autistic Child

by Katherine on June 1, 2011

Finding the right babysitter for your child who has been diagnosed with autism can be quite challenging. Not only because your child has special needs but also because not all babysitters are qualified to watch over your child. You want someone who not only understands your child but who also has the necessary experience in babysitting an autistic child.

When searching for the right babysitter, it is recommended that you spend time in interviewing the potential babysitter as this is your chance to get to know the potential babysitter better. Always prepare a list of questions that you will ask and do not limit yourself to questions which can be answered by a resume. It would be good to have some situational questions which will help you see how the potential babysitter would handle different scenarios with your child. Asking the right questions will help you determine the potential babysitter’s suitability in caring for your child.

If you are interviewing a couple of babysitters, do not hesitate to take down notes. This will help you remember who said what and it will also avoid confusion later on when you are trying to review your potential candidates and when you are ready to make your choice.

Below is a general guideline of what you should ask during your interview:

1. Does she have any formal education on autism. If she does not have any, what does she know about it? What are her expectations? It is important that the babysitter you hire has some knowledge about autism so that she knows will know how to take care of your child.

2. What is her experience with autistic children? Has she worked with them before or is this going to be her first time? If she has worked with autistic children before, what was her scope of work and what can she say about her experience? Did she like it? Did she have any difficulty? You can also ask if she is able to provide references.

3. How is she going to address certain situations? Provide some real or hypothetical situations and see how she would handle the issue. What would she do to prevent issues from coming up? In the event that your child wishes to do something which is against the households or something which will hurt your child, how would she handle it? Are you comfortable with the way she answered it?

Share Your Thoughts!
jasmine says:

How old do you have to be in order to watch an autistic child in spotsylvania county virginia? Its very important that I know this information.

Thanks!

Jasmine

Kathleen says:

@Margaret- What state are you from? I am in Arkansas and have never been able to have a babysitter for my son. It would be so wonderful! Kathleen

Michele says:

I have a grandchild that is 5 and severely autistic. I am concerned because he is being left with a 17 year old girl who has had no experience with Autistic children. She has only know him since the Summer. She also watches my other two grandchildren at the same time who are 7 and 3. Do I have a legitimate concern? What is the legal age for someone to watch a severely handicapped child. He has outburst of anger and becomes aggressive at times. Any information would be helpful

Margaret Lewis says:

I am a retired psychiatric RN. I worked for 22 yrs at UCLA psychiatric hospital teaching children with Autism/PDD, ADHD etc. I am available for babysitting/respite care. How do I get the word out to parents

Lisa says:

Margaret
Which state are you located in?

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