Having kids is great and I love it! However there is one thing that I don’t love, well actually fear a little bit…well actually more then one thing:
* Play dates
* Sleep overs
* Babysitting others parents kids
This may sound rather “crappy” of me and negative but there are good reasons for this fear.
First off I need to step back and tell you where I think this blame comes from initially. I blame the lawsuit years back with McDonald’s and the hot coffee. In my opinion that was the pivotal point where our lousy judicial system opened the door for greedy, stupid people. Hello…coffee is hot. Why the hell would some judge rule in favor of this person suing for hot coffee…get a grip.
Second off…remember when we were young, meaning anyone a kid in the 70′s-80″s and before? Do you remember getting hurt and friends house etc? What did you parents do? My parents took care of me, put a band-aide on it and we went on with life. Kids get hurt and they do stupid things. Hopefully they learn from their mistakes and we all move on.
So now let’s go back 2-years ago. My daughter is 5-years old and we had a 4-year old friend over for a play date. This was not the first time, in fact it was about the 4th time. Her Mom had come over with her in the past as well and visited with me. The kids would play for a few hours in the basement play room and all was good. Then it happened…something I will regret forever…I offered to let he leave her child with me to help her out with some errands. She was a single Mom, I felt bad and wanted to help her out. She agreed and her child and mine went down into the playroom as they always did.
About an hour later we heard a scream and it just so happened that the little girls finger got slammed in the door. OMG it was horrible, I felt horrible that it happened and we called her Mom, got her to emergency and to make a long story short the finger was saved, without hand surgery, and the best of the situation happened. In fact I kept in touch with the Mother for weeks, checking up on her daughter, so I knew the status of the injury.
Now I felt bad….who wouldn’t? I did call my insurance company because I did not want the single Mom to get slammed with any out of pocket. It is not like I felt like it was my fault, as I was not letting the kids do anything that she did not let them do at my house, I just felt bad and figured if I could help out with my insurance then that was the right and nice thing to do.
I told her that the next day and she seemed so grateful. I told her that I know how it is to pay that 20% of the hospital bills and since I had insurance I called so she could have help. However, I found out weeks later, and not from her, that she had already contacted a lawyer that night or early the next day. Am I mad she contacted a lawyer? Well to be honest, if the finger would have not been saved, or she needed hand surgery, and she would have not got the “best outcome” she could after the situation then you know honestly I would have been more open to the lawyer thing. I mean it’s the insurance company she is suing. However, since I was told by her for nearly a month how good everything was turning out, I found it crappy that she called a lawyer before she knew the outcome and before she was even offered any money from my insurance. That to me was the worst part of it.
Funny thing is that even the doctor and entire staff in the ER mentioned how kids fingers in the door is one of the most common and frequent injuries they see. It did not happen from neglect. It was a stupid accident and thank god the little girl will have an intact finger, with feeling, and per the hand surgeon “you won’t even know it was injured in a few years.”
So long story well long…hence my deep fear of play dates, sleep overs, and babysitting other peoples kids. I don’t like it, I don’t do it hardly ever, and my children will suffer because of it. Again…coffee person has dominoed this fear into myself and many. Now everyone thinks they can sue and sadly enough they will win.
Going back to the finger. The woman did receive a rather large sum of cash from my insurance. A little over $16,000. You know on the other hand if that is what was important to her then I guess I should just say congratulations because everyone deserves to get what they want out of life. I believe in Karma big time…it has slapped me in the face a million times. I know that this woman will get hers. The other thing about karma that I full heartily believe in is that it comes back 10-fold. I will not be around to hear how she gets hers but I do know she will.
Now don’t get me wrong. I feel horrible that someone got hurt on my watch. The poor little girl has not fault in the situation at all. It was a dumb accident and it has escalated into a horrific experience for everyone.
So to any of my friends that have asked me to babysit and I say no…don’t take it personally, it’s not you, it’s just fear. Since the accident I did finally let my daughter have a sleepover at a friends. It was at a good friends but I have to admit that the fear still ate at me. It won’t be a frequent thing and if it’s not family I will most likely not have a sleep over here. I just am not comfortable saying yes…may never happen.
So be careful with play dates…you may pay big for one some day!
Have a great week!