We've all worked an odd job or two before in order to generate a little extra cash. Whether it's delivering papers, helping with chores or part-time hospitality gigs, these types of pursuits are the life-blood of teenagers. Exchanging your time and efforts for money is one of the cornerstones of the job market, after all.
But what would you do if your employer just flat out refused to pay you? Not just quibbling over your rate, or taking a long time organising the transaction, but claiming they don't actually owe you any money at all? Such was the story shared this week on Reddit by a user known only as Vortexthing. After completing an eight-hour workday with the kids, the babysitter contacted the mother to arrange payment. And after pointing out the money owed for the babysitting gig, the conversation went from bad to worse.
Babysitting is a pretty popular job for those looking for a little income boost.
via: ShutterstockA huge amount of us have worked in childcare in our time to earn a little extra cash on the side. It can be a super fun and rewarding job!
But it is just that: a job.No matter how fun or rewarding you may find it, babysitting isn't exactly a hobby, is it? It's a service provided in exchange for money. It's a transaction.
Whether you're on payroll or not, babysitters still deserve to get that paper.In fact, given they're looking after someone's (presumably highly valued) kids, you'd think their pay would reflect the important nature of their job. So you'd forgive a babysitter for (at least partially) thinking about the money, right?
Which is what makes this story so shocking.
You'd be shocked, right?Especially if your rate had been discussed beforehand. Whether there was a signed contract or not, you'd expect someone's word to count for something. Otherwise, you end up not being able to trust anyone!
Which is why this post, shared on Reddit, really struck a chord.
via: RedditAfter a day of work, a babysitter texts a mother to arrange picking up her paycheck. But instead of planning the payment, the mother went in... let's just say, a different direction.
Instead of pay, the Mom pointed out the... free ice cream?I mean, we all love ice cream. But a portion of ice cream in exchange for a full day of work? That doesn't seem like a great deal to us.
In fact, this is where we'd start to get pretty nervous.There are always customers to who to wangle their way out of paying - that's a given in any industry. But to be so blatant about it? That's pretty unusual.
And that's before you even get to the Mom's "excuse."Claiming to have never discussed payment with the babysitter beforehand is a pretty ballsy move, we have to give her that. Rude and exploitative, sure, but ballsy.
Well, luckily, the babysitter had the texts discussing payment to hand.
via: RedditThese texts, which have a noticeable difference in tone from the later hostility, show the Mom agreeing to the babysitter's $16 per hour rate. But it was her response to this clear pre-arranged agreement that was truly bizarre.
Instead of arguing with the babysitter, the Mom simply says, "I delete my messages often."I think I speak for all of us when I say: "What??". We're not even sure where the Mom was trying to go with this. Does she think because she deleted a message, that means the message is gone forever?
We're genuinely confused.Is this what happens when you mix moms and technology? Does this woman really think that by editing her text message history she can also edit reality?
And don't even get us started on the insults.Who calls someone "stuck up" just for enquiring about a previously agreed-upon payment? But this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what happened next.
First, the mom tried flat-out refusal.
via: RedditThe babysitter responds offering a slightly discounted rate, claiming she needs the cash to buy textbooks for school. The mother's defense? That "they're easy kids."
Can we say "irrelevant"?No matter how "easy" a day of work is, it's just that. A day of work. Claiming the previously agreed upon rate doesn't reflect the "easiness" of the work is certainly not something to be discussed after the work has already been done!
This really makes our blood boil.Not only is it rude and incredibly aggressive, but it's just so ... unjust! And just as our heckles were really starting to rise, the Mom doubled down on her refusal to pay.
Things quickly got even worse for the sitter.
via: RedditThe Mom goes fully psycho on the babysitter - refusing to pay even a discounted rate, calling her a c-word, then (and we can hardly believe this) blocking her. We have to say, the babysitter's response is far more controlled than we may have been.
Everyone's face when reading these final texts.Seriously - WTF? It's one thing to refuse to pay someone, but it's quite another to baselessly attack their character. It's almost hard to believe this is the same Mom from those earlier, cordial text messages.
The messages were shared on Reddit where readers had a similar response.We've all dealt with a rude customer or tricky employee before, but this was just a whole new level. People could hardly believe the Mom's responses.
The Reddit thread went crazy.At the time of writing, the thread has over 4.5 thousand comments. In fact, the thread has been so busy that it has now been locked so no new comments can be posted.
Many of the comments were filled with advice for the babysitter.
via: ShutterstockSome commenters encouraged the sitter to take the Mom to small claims court in order to get the money she was owed.
One of the top comments offered some good advice.
via: RedditBefore escalating the matter, the sitter was advised to consider talking to the husband to see if she could get any more sense out of him. There were also social methods the sitter could use to try to get payment, plus prevent any future babysitters being swindled in the same way.
Taking the mother to small claims court was a popular idea.Since the sitter had proof, it's highly likely to court would favour her, and the mother would be forced to pay the $128 plus any extra court fees. Of course, in the court of public opinion, it was a very clear win for the babysitter.
Some commenters wanted to see this case in a more famous court.
via: Reddit"Judge Judy would clap this lady," claimed a user named Kai_The_Fairy. Another user agreed, commenting, "Judge, Judy, and Executioner."
We'd totally love to see this!This Mom needs to be told off - and if there's one woman for the job, we're pretty sure it's Judge Judy herself. Can we pay anyone to make this happen?
We think this user summed it up best.
via: RedditRedditors seem pretty sure the Mom thought by deleting the texts she was removing them from the sitter's phone, too. Luckily, technology was on the side of justice with this one.
The whole thing is pretty funny.If you forget about how awful this Mom is being to a sitter who helped her out and just wanted to buy some schoolbooks, anyway.
VortexThing followed with some updates on the situation.
via: RedditThe sitter is reluctant to take the Mom to court as it seems a lot of legal work for a relatively small amount of money, saying instead she's planning on contacting the husband. However, Reddit users encouraged her to pursue legal action, as small claims court is made for these types of disputes.
The next update from VortexThing seemed to agree.
via: RedditThanks to all the advice from Reddit users, VortexThing says the sitter is investigating a small claim. We think the internet is the future of vigilante justice!
We can't wait to see what happens next.We've got our fingers crossed for the Reddit thread to be unlocked so we can get an update on this story. We're really hoping for a happy ending for the sitter, and for her to be able to get those textbooks after all. Made it through this babysitting horror stories? Well, buckle up, because these next ones are even worse.
And a few days later, we found out, as Vortexthing returned to Reddit with an update.With just about the entire internet dying to hear what happened, Vortexthing would deliver. An update popped up on Reddit a few days after the original post.
First, they apologized for their awful title.The Reddit post that kicked off this whole debacle was titled "Sister sent me this... she was blocked immediately after" which is... less than clear. It made it seem like Vortexthing was the rotten mom stiffing the poor hard-working babysitter.
Then, they clarified who was who in the text.The sister was in blue, the crazy mom in gray. Vortexthing is a third party. This got kind of confusing because if the crazy person and the babysitter are related, it changes who in the story is the hero and who's the villain. You can't charge your brother or sister to watch their kids — those are your nieces and nephews. You just gotta do it.
Vortexthing and his sister decided that small claims court would be their last resort.After so many Redditors suggested using small claims court for its intended purpose — handling small financial matters without the giant hassle of hiring lawyers — the wronged babysitter decided she'd go that route if there were no other options.
Instead, they called the husband.That's right, there's another character in this drama — the husband of the cheapskate mom and father of those "easy kids". After a few tries, the sitter was able to get him on the horn.
They said he responded sheepishly.Ooh boy, not a good look for the ol' dad. When you hear that your wife is acting abhorrently, you can either a) rigorously defend her, or b) apologize profusely. It sounds like this guy took a middle road, or as I like to call it, the "coward's path."
He told the sitter he'd bring it up with his wife.Vortexthing said, "Basically, the conversation said something to the effect of 'yeah, I'll talk to her about it.' Not very promising but he said he'd get back to us as soon as he could."
But when the sitter texted the dad later to follow up, he left them on read.Seeing that someone has read your texts but is not responding is the universal sign you're being ignored. A public service announcement: just turn off read receipts! Then you have plausible deniability when your worst friends text you asking to hang!
Finally, the sitter sent one last text.And it was a doozy. It read: Mr. [Name], we are aware you are reading our messages. We have consistently tried to reason and work with you, and it is honestly quite laughable that you are refusing to pay. After consulting with friends, we have decided we will be using a Small Claims Court if you do not return us the $128 in cash that you rightfully owe. You will have to go through legal fees and court proceedings and it will certainly cost you more than what you owe us. So, as soon as you and your wife stop acting like children and face the people you owe money to in person, we may be able to have a reasonable discussion.
Oh, and those "friends" they mentioned?That was Reddit. Those friends were Reddit. When most people say they "talked with friends," they usually mean, like, they brought it up with one buddy over a beer. The sitter and Vortexthing brought it up with the entire internet.
Suddenly, the awful mom unblocked the sister.Just like that, the sitter was back in touch with the unreasonable mom! Finally, with the lines of communication open again, they were on the path to getting the problem resolved.
... saying she'd give her the cash at 2 PM that day.While it's a relief to hear that the sitter was going to get paid, what really gets me is that we don't get to see that text! I want to see how the mom relented! Was she passive-aggressive? Apologetic? Incensed?
And in a later update, we found out that she got it!While Vortexthing was initially apprehensive about his sister's chances of actually getting the money, saying, "We'll see how it goes," we found out shortly thereafter that it happened. In a later thread, Vortexthing wrote, "$128 in hand. We resolved that sh*t."
The siblings' next steps?After all that, they weren't going to let these choosing beggars get off scot-free. They were going to hop on their computers and use the internet to ruin her. The first step was, as Vortexthing put it, "publicly sh*t-smear them on [their] local Facebook group."
They also plan to post about her on NextDoor.An app to let your neighbors know what's going on in the neighborhood, NextDoor is the perfect place to shame someone who tries to stiff you out of your babysitting money.
And leave her house a one-star Google review.
via: ShutterstockNow, this is the only piece of petty revenge I'm not into, if only because I don't know who will ever see it. Who checks the reviews of people's houses?