Categorized | Childcare, Relative Care

Top Questions About Relative Care Answered

When looking for a child care provider for your toddler, why not try relative care? For most parents, it is the perfect provider because it gives them security in knowing that their child is in safe hands. To help you better understand how it works, here are the answers to the most asked questions about relative care.

Question # 1: What are the criteria’s of a good relative care provider?

Answer: There are 3 important features every parent must look for – availability, ability and attitude.

  • Availability - Parents who are hard at work are lucky enough to have family members who are willing to look after their toddler. But, relative care goes beyond that. Just like babysitting or nanny care, a relative caregiver needs to be accessible at any time. Meaning, the relative should be open in accommodating the toddler when the parents need her to.
  • Ability - The most important concern in a relative child care set up is the ability of the relative to provide outstanding guardianship. The caregiver needs to be physically, intellectually and psychologically fit to look after the toddler on a daily basis. The relative must also be trustworthy at all times and must have a natural affection towards the toddler. She needs to adapt and follow your parenting and discipline style. No changes must be made without your consent.
  • Attitude - A relative needs to be responsible with your little one’s welfare. If she cancels on days where she is supposed to look after your little one without giving you any valid explanation, then clearly she is not a dependable caregiver. She needs to have an open mind especially when terms of your different parenting techniques. Lastly, even if she is paid less than the standard rate of a trained childcare provider, she must do her work proficiently.

Question # 2: How will you know if your relative is a perfect match for your toddler?

Answer: Even though you already created a bond with each other, it is still important to have a formal conversation with your relative to properly gauge whether or not your relative and your toddler can establish a solid relationship. Sit down and discuss the demands of the job, your expectations as well as your rules and regulations. Ask for her insights and opinions. Discuss with your relative the physical and emotional work involved. Inquire about her childcare style so you can determine whether or not she can provide a secure, fun and nurturing environment for your little one. You know she is the right one when she is open to your ideas and criticisms.

Question # 3: Should you pay for your relative’s services?

Answer: Yes, you need to pay your relative. But if in case she refuses to take the money, then respect her decision. The safest way for you to pay back your relative’s good deed without hurting her ego is by giving her small compensations like a rest day, gift certificates to a spa, beauty salon, clothing store or restaurants. Delivering flowers or gift baskets (grocery items) will also work.

Question # 4: What are the advantages and disadvantages of relative care?



  • You are aware of your relative’s traits and her past.
  • You find someone you can totally trust. Relative care gives you the peace of mind you have longed for. Since she is your own family, you are ensured that your caregiver is truly concerned of your toddler’s happiness, health and welfare.
  • Your toddler can stay at home or in your relative’s home. He is ensured of a comforting and safe atmosphere.
  • The least expensive type of childcare as you can choose to pay for your relative’s services by giving money or compensation’s like a paid vacation, electric bill support and so on.


  • It can be quite difficult to form an employer-employee relationship because of your personal bond.
  • The caregiver can clash with how you raise your toddler especially if she is older than you. She may choose to instil her own discipline style which can only confuse your toddler.
  • Complications can arise over payments for her services.
  • Your toddler may feel more emotionally attached with his caregiver than with his parents.

Question # 5: How do you maintain your personal relationship?

Answer: Just keep things casual. Lay down your rules from the start. Hear out your relative’s opinions and requests. Most importantly, always keep communication lines open.

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