caregiver question

Tara - posted on 09/14/2010 ( 14 moms have responded )

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How would you feel if you found out the following information:

Someone has been caring for your kids throughout the summer, this person is a relative, someone you trust. This person has taken your young children to the beach, to the pool and to swing off a rope swing into a river.

Your children are always wearing PFD or they can swim well on their own.

Then you find out that the caregiver can not swim, is in fact terrified of the water. This person figures if it really came down to it, they would be able to rescue your child. They feel that if it were a case of life and death they would get over their fears and just jump in and save your child. But admittedly they can not and have never been able to swim!!!!
Again this a family member, someone you would not have thought to ask about their abilities in the water. Someone you assumed could swim simply because of their age and the fact they have a pool!!!!

Opinions?

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I can swim just fine and had swimming lessons growing up BUT I don't like water and it freaks me out to have my head submerged in water. So I do not bring my son to the pool or beach if i don't have someone with me who is a good swimmer or a lifeguard is present. I can swim and I've pulled people out of the pool on more than one occasion BUT I am still not delusional in thinking that my fears will never take the best of me. I don't take any risks and it seems foolish to me that someone who doesn't even swim would risk your kids' lives.

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Oh no. Don't let her take your children anywhere around water! Maybe the park or playground would be good. I am not a good swimmer either, but I definitely would be able to jump in & try to save a child. If she can't swim at all, they would both die!

Lucy - posted on 09/15/2010

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That is not a sensible decision on the care giver's part. There are plenty of other places they can take your kids that don't involve water.

My husband can't swim, and would never dream of taking our kids to the pool or beach on his own.

Carolee - posted on 09/14/2010

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It's really irresponsible of them to take YOUR kids near water when they cannot swim. And, as far as the "getting over the fear" if something goes wrong... my father-in-law had to watch his sister drown and die because she went swimming in a river and he did not know how to swim. Granted, they were kids, but I had to save my cousin from drowning when I was a kid. Had I not known how to swim, it would have turned out horribly. If it's somewhere with a lifeguard on duty, that's a whole other story and completely acceptable. Otherwise, they need to find more appropriate activities to do with your kids.

Stifler's - posted on 09/14/2010

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I can't swim very good. I still plan on taking my kids to the beach. Not that I'd trust someone to look after my kids for the summer.

Rosie - posted on 09/14/2010

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yeah, not good, not good at all. my husband can't swim and he would never dream of taking the boys anywhere he can't touch, and never anywhere even if he could touch without a lifeguard..

i think it's highly irresponsible to do that. what was this person thinking? she would just magically be able to swim? the adrenaline rush would somehow turn her legs into fins oor something? i don't get some peoples rationale.

[deleted account]

BIG no-no unless the water is super calm and not even close to being over the caregivers head.... like waist deep at the most.

I don't swim at all. I CAN and I'm not afraid of the water, but I don't swim well and I'm not strong at it. My girls are good swimmers, so I feel bad for them that the only beaches I take them to are the 'kiddie poolish' ones.... because I know they are better swimmers than I am now and I CAN'T save them if they're in a troublesome situation in deep/rough water. They have to go to the 'big kid beaches' w/ my friend and his kids.....

Nikki - posted on 09/14/2010

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I would be peeved, that's irresponsible. I can't swim properly, I would never take my own children swimming in a river, let alone anyone else's. I have taken children to the beach and to the pool, however at the beach my rule is they are not allowed past my knees and I have to be right next to them, at the pool, there are children pools which are shallow and they have lifeguards to supervise.

Amie - posted on 09/14/2010

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My MIL can't swim, which is why she never goes near the lake with our kids without a life jacket of her own or with one of us there.

She knows that even if she attempted to rescue one of them if something went wrong, she doesn't have the knowledge or skill to actually help.

It takes more then just being able to jump in, unless the water is shallow, to help a person who is drowning.

I'd raise my concerns and tell them never again, ever. Without their own life jacket on at all times or with someone who is a capable swimmer.

C. - posted on 09/14/2010

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Well, I can't swim b/c of my arm. If I could, I'd probably be swimming in circles anyway.



I have watched children of different ages, BUT I have never taken them to the pool or beach just for the simple fact that I cannot swim.



I think it's irresponsible of someone to do that. If you can't swim and you want to take the children you watch to some form of water, be it the swimming pool, the beach or even a water park, then take someone along that CAN swim. With the parent's permission, of course, since it's obviously their child(ren) and not yours.



Or the kids can wait and go with their parents and the caregiver can take them to places that don't have water.

Tah - posted on 09/14/2010

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"you can't swim but you have my children out here swinging on a rope over a river, wrong answer boo, we will see you at the park, thats the only place you can go with them"....

Krista - posted on 09/14/2010

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I'd be seriously alarmed, and tell them that if they can't swim, the only place they can take your kid to swim is at a pool with a lifeguard.



If someone cannot swim, they cannot just "get over" their fears and jump in and save a kid.



It takes YEARS of training to be a lifeguard. If someone who cannot swim goes out and tries to save your kid, then what will happen when your flailing, panicking kid grabs on to the person's neck and head and tries to use them to push himself out of the water? Because that is what people do when they are drowning -- it is pure instinct. And you have to hold them in a very specific way when you're bringing them back to dry land, to keep them from taking you down with them.



If this non-swimmer jumped in and tried to save your kid, you'd have very good odds that BOTH of them would drown.

Katherine - posted on 09/14/2010

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:O WHAT???!!!! That's what I would say. If you want to put yourself at risk fine, but don't you dare put my child at risk. That's extremly poor judgement on their part. Anything can happen. They can't just "get over" their fears and jump in and save someone if they can't even swim!
I would be furious.
Pride aside, bad bad judgement call.

Jessica - posted on 09/14/2010

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Ooh, unless she took them somewhere with a lifeguard I wouldn't feel comfortable with that. If something were to go wrong... even if she got over her fears enough to get in the water to attempt to save them, if you don't even know how to swim that isn't going to do you much good!

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