This Redditor graciously agreed to babysit her friend’s kids for free. But they went ballistic and threatened her when they found out she only prepared vegetarian meals!
OP (Original Poster) is a 24-year-old female who has been a vegetarian for the past 10 years.
She has found that Indian food is one of the more flavorful options for a vegetarian dish, so that’s what her diet primarily consists of. However, she noted she also prepares vegetarian dishes from other cuisines.
She graciously agreed to babysit her 36-year-old friend’s three kids—a 6-year-old boy, a 7-year-old boy, and a 9-year-old boy—as she’d just started a new job. OP got into a routine of watching the boys from 11:30 PM to 4:00 PM, Monday through Friday, as they were being homeschooled due to COVID-19 cases still being high at the public school.
During that time, OP’s friend worked from 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM, and her 42-year-old husband worked from 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM.
Living Paycheck to Paycheck
OP was happy to help since she knew they couldn’t afford childcare. She even went so far as to refuse any payment for babysitting as she knew they both worked minimum-wage jobs and that they were struggling to stay afloat.
Well Taken Care Of
While the boys were with OP, she would make them lunch and a snack. Usually, these dishes were all Indian and vegetarian since she was cooking not only for them but also for herself.
Looking Out for Upset Tummies
OP would even tone down the spices she’d put in the kids’ lunches to ensure it wouldn’t upset their stomachs or burn their mouths.
For snacks, she also gave them fruit, chips, sandwiches, and a choice of either juice or milk. These were all things a healthy boy needed to grow up strong and big.
The kids absolutely loved the food OP prepared. They always ate all of their food on their plates.
The eldest boy would even often go back for seconds. OP had never had any issues with the kids eating her food.
OP was soon waylaid by her friend, though. Her friend stormed into her house and started berating her.
Her friend claimed she was “starving” her children and “poisoning” them by feeding them vegetarian Indian food instead of “normal food with meat in it.”
Her friend didn’t stop there. She continued her tirade and demanded that OP start preparing meals with meat in them with only salt, pepper, and garlic as seasoning.
If OP didn’t follow these demands, her friend threatened she would “call CPS” on her for “child abuse and neglect.”
OP learned that the kids no longer wanted to eat the dishes prepared by their parents, saying that their food was too “bland.”
They had begun to make a habit of asking for OP’s food. Her friend told her that it was all her fault this was happening.
Cutting Them Loose
OP couldn’t believe all the ridiculous demands her friend was laying at her feet. She refused to do what her friend asked and informed her that she would no longer be watching her children.
Laying the Blame
Unsurprisingly, OP’s friend lost it. She and her husband called OP an “a**hole” and complained about not having any other childcare options.
OP didn’t budge since they probably should have thought about that before giving outrageous ultimatums.
Not About the Cost
They were way out of line. Aside from not charging for her services, she was making food fit for growing kids.
OP added, “It’s not a question of being able to afford the meat, as I work from home as a software developer and have a lot of free time throughout the day as well, but the food I cook has plenty of protein, carbs, and fats and all other macros and the children have never asked for meat either.”
What Redditors Think
Redditors were scandalized at the audacity of OP’s friend.
One user with the highest upvote commented, “What does she think CPS will do to her babysitter if she calls them? The worst that will happen is that they will say you can’t babysit them anymore. Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face. Not the a**hole. Keep cooking what you want.”
Where’s the Seasoning?
Other users pointed out that the real problem was that OP’s friend probably got jealous and upset that her children thought her cooking was bland.
One Redditor said, “More like she is upset that they won’t eat her horrible and tasteless food after trying something interesting. There are plenty of interesting tastes in European cuisine, too—Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, Greek, and other Balkanic. Hell, even Finnish cuisine—known for being bland—uses some herbs and spices other than salt, pepper, and garlic.”
What do you think? Was OP wrong for not agreeing to make dishes with meat for her friend’s children?
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This post first appeared as She Refused to Continue Babysitting Her Friend’s Kids for Free After She Was Accused of “Starving” and “Poisoning” Them, All Because She Fed Them Vegetarian Meals. Now She’s Even Threatened With a CPS Report! on Quote Ambition.