Library Life

Not a Babysitter

I’ve been a library employee for over five years and I can honestly say that I have very rarely had any issues with my job. I love it! Just not when certain things happen. What kind of issues could a rural librarian face, you may ask? I’ll tell you right now.

  • Books returned covered in a variety of things from bodily fluids to beverages of all sorts
  • DVDs returned with drug remnants in the cases
  • Old men creepily hitting on myself or my coworkers
  • People insisting they returned an item (sometimes very nastily insisting) only to actually return said item later that day

But the absolute biggest issue we have is with what is now my area of expertise and that’s the children. It seems that many parents think we should be responsible for their kids. Little ones of all ages wander around unsupervised, regardless of our child related policies. Over the years I’ve stopped several toddlers from rushing out the doors because the parents aren’t paying attention. And the teens.

The problem with the teens isn’t that they aren’t allowed in the library on their own, they are. It’s that half the teens act like children and we have to treat them as such. It can get frustrating when you have to ask them to lower their voices, stop cursing, etc. every single time they are in the building.

I do know that other people have a much harder time with their jobs and, in the scheme of things, I don’t have it that hard. It just gets really annoying sometimes. Overall I just want people to know this: I love my job, I’m just supposed to be a librarian, not a babysitter and I wish parents would realize that.


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