Post # 1
I’ve known my friend for a long time. She has 2 kids and the one child is in daycare. My friend messaged me today to let me know she put me as her child’s emergency contact at the daycare.
I feel honoured she feels that way about me. But I can’t help but feel like it may not be the best idea to have me listed as the emergency contact.
1) I live and work(at least) 45 minutes away. I also do not have a child carseat (I have no children) in case I would have to take her daughter somewhere.
2) I’m worried that I will get called all the time due to my friend and her husband not having cellphones. They do not work far from the daycare centre. But my friend is always in her car going places. I’m worried that the daycare centre will be calling on me because they are both hard to reach if they can’t reach them at work.
3) I don’t know any of her family members contact information. And because I live 45 minutes away, I’m not sure where I would take her child (without a carseat). Her child is only 2 so she will need a carseat for a while yet.
I feel bad telling my friend no. But I’m not really sure why she decided I would be the best fit. Her mom (the grandmother) works only 15 minutes away from the daycare. So I think she would be a better fit. I also worry with how often children get sick, that I would be getting called all the time to come pick up her daughter from daycare.
Has anyone else had this experience? I’m in no way related by blood or marriage to the child either. So I can see my boss getting confused as to why I am now an emergency contact.
What do you guys think?
Post # 2
Many places require more than one contact. Are you the primary contact?
And why doesn’t she have a cell phone? At least here (Australia) you can get dirt cheap pre-pay ones.
I’d agree only if a parent and the grandmother were contacts ahead of you, i.e. an absolute last resort. I had my mother listed as 3rd contact (after me and DH) and in 15+ years she was never called, as far as I know. And DH (2nd contact) was called pretty rarely, unless there were regular calls he never told me about, which I doubt.
Post # 3
We fretted over emergency contacts for our child, as we didn’t have a whole lot of reliable choices. My parents are too far, DHs partially snow bird, DH’s sister works nights and is hard to get a hold of via cell (we call her husband if we want to speak with SIL) and my brother was until a few months ago child clueless.
I spoke to a co-worker about our worries, and all of my co-workers told me they have never used their emergency contact. They have them, but daycare really wants to get mom/dad first and will take a couple tries before they start going for emergency contacts.
If you don’t want to be, though, you can say no, or ask your friend who their last contact was and if they got called.
Post # 4
If you said you don’t have a car seat as excuse she might get you one. 45 minutes drive away I am not sure if she would buy it since my co-workers take 1.5 hours to get pick up their kids. Why don’t they have a cell phone? I would say don’t text back. Hopefully by then she would gotten another person. Sometimes people changed their mind and hopefully they would go to the grandmother. IF you are not comfortable then don’t do it. You can say you don’t have experiences with children and plus you have a lot of things to do after work. Sometimes people like to pray on those without children thinking they have nothing to do and is available all the time.
Post # 5
I’m not sure if I am the primary or if they have a whole list of people that they have provided. She hasn’t told me that information. And I’m not really sure why she doesn’t have a cell phone. There have been a few times where she has facebook messaged me to call her husband due to a family emergency. And then I have to relay information back and forth. The one time I was at work and I got in trouble for texting at work! I have told them it would be a good idea to get a cellphone, and even told them about the pre-paid ones. They just recently (in July) got a landline at their house. But that doesn’t really help if they are out and about and something happens.
Post # 6
I’m sure she knows your situation. You may have been just an extra person that she trusts that would be there if plan A, B, C failed.
And not one of them has a cellphone?? I would think a daycare center would require a parent to have one.
Post # 7
Keep in mind that as an emergency contact, you shouldn’t be called except for in emergency situations. And if there is a true emergency, you probably would not need a carseat.
I taught for four years and never dialed the number of an emergency contact. If the kid is just sick or threw up or something, they should not be calling the emergency contact. But I absolutely get where you are coming from.
Personally, I’d wait and see what happens. They will probably never call you. And if it does turn out they are calling regularly, perhaps then you can ask her to take you off the list. Which, you’re probably very low down on the list for all the reasons you gave. I am thinking they did include the grandma. Even the doggy daycare I take my dog to had me putting down something like six different people they can call.
So I am super curious as to why they don’t have cell phones? That is baffling to me. 😛// ETA read your update on that.
Post # 8
I would also try to find out whether you’re the primary contact – maybe she needed to list a certain amount and couldn’t think of anyone else to take the last spot? I have 3 young siblings (a full sister aged 13 and 2 half brothers aged 8 and 4). I am the third emergency contact for all 3 of them, even though I work about an hour away. I have never received a call about any of them and have been listed for many many years now.
Post # 9
I just feel 45 minutes is a long time to wait in case of emergency, and that is if I can leave work right away. I work for a small company and that’s not always possible (which is completely understandable to me).
She only works like a 10 minute walk from the daycare, and her husband only works a 30 minute walk from the daycare, so not far at all. I have no idea why they don’t have cellphones.
There have been a few times where she is frantically messaging me on facebook (while I am at work) to call her husband to get him to come home for an emergency or to relay information. It just seems like it would be easier if they both had cellphones (even a prepaid one).
I feel like my friend relies on me a lot, just because it’s easier. She doesn’t always have the best relationship with her family. But she has a relationship with her mom. And I know her mom would do whatever it took to help her kids out. Plus her mom only works 15 minutes away.
I just feel like if something did happen, my friend would be upset it took me so long to get to her daughter. Even though she knows I work and live 45 minutes away.
Post # 10
The no cell phones thing baffles me too! I just don’t get it!
Post # 11
Maybe tell her “I am flattered but this won’t work for me. I don’t have extra vacation days and do not have a car seat.” Alternatively, you can say something along the lines of “sorry, this won’t fly at work” or even mention that work will not be understanding unless it is a relative by blood/marriage. Even ‘I work too far away and don’t feel comfortable with this’ or simply ‘sorry, I am too busy at work and can’t.’
Post # 12
In an actual emergency EMS would be contacted. The grandma may have been listed, you may just be another option. Some emergency cards leave room for the parents plus 3 additional contacts.
In case of tummy ache, vomiting fever, owie on the playground, you would be called only if the parents and other contacts listed before you couldn’t be reached. Although it would be nice if you could pick up the child, more often than not, the “non-parent contacts” listed on the card typically just get in contact with the Mom or Dad for us. If the child needs to be picked up, it would ultimately fall on the parents.
I think you should talk to your friend. Let her know it’s unlikely you’d be able to come get her kid and ask her if she can she at least give you some phone numbers to contact someone who could in an emergency. I could be wrong but you may be looking to deep in to this.
Post # 13
She should have asked you before she did this, not told you after.
I think your concerns are valid. I would tell her that you are unable to be an emergency contact for a number of reasons. I would not spell out those reasons.
I would offer her assistance in cell phone shopping if she is unable to do it on her own.
Post # 14
I think it is absolutely reasonable for you to tell her that while you are flattered, you cannot accept being listed as an emergency contact. Tell her honestly that your work will not be accommodating (either to responding to a situation with the daycare, taking their calls, or you having to contact her), and that you are simply not comfortable with the role she has assigned you. But FWIW, I wouldn’t ever allow her to put me in the middle and try to contact her DH, either. If they do not have ways to contact one another and refuse to get cellphones, that’s their problem and not yours. If you make yourself available to be taken advantage of, she will continue to do it.
Post # 15
- Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom
Every situation is different I suppose.
For example, I don’t own a car…but if I was asked to be an emergency contact for my niece or my friend’s daughter I would accept and feel honoured they trust me to be there for their child at a critical moment when they cannot. Besides, you don’t need a car seat to hop on a bus!
Just my two cents 🙂