And Why Was I Fired?

Received Friday, January 18, 2008 -Perspective & Opinion
Actually, I know why. I was just wondering if any parents can help me understand reason behind it.

I 'm a great nanny, the kids love me. I've been with the family almost a year and all was going so well. Tuesday, the mom decided to work from home, she seldom does. After lunch, the five year old little girl I care for ran into the playroom and accidently called me mom, she does this on occasion and I've corrected her in the past. To be completely truthful, I can't honestly recall if I corrected her this time or just responded to her need. An hour later, the Grandmother showed up and the mother called me into her home office. She told me very coldly, that my services will no longer be required. I asked if I should finish the day and she told me no, leave immediately. I asked why but she simply said I should leave now. I left in tears and am heartbroken. Calls and emails went unanswered all day Wed. and Thurs. Today, the father called me and told me he's sorry but his wife feels threatened by the fact that her daughter felt so comfortable with me, she called me mom. Are people really that insecure? I asked the father what sort of compensation would be made and he said we live in an employ- at- will state so they can fire me at any time, just as I could have quit at any time. No compensation would be forthcoming.

All right, so I get the legal thing but what about the moral side? They know I am a single mom who depended on my salary to support myself and my teenage son. I asked if I could get a letter of reference and the father said, not right now, she is too upset but maybe at a later date. I hung up. My problem is, I did nothing wrong to these people or their children. I provided excellent care, was never late or called out and never refused overtime. I guess I am just looking to other parents to tell me if they see any reason behind this mother's actions towards me. And can a nanny be too good? Should I dial back my interaction with the kids in the future so they don't become so attached? Also, to you nannies, what should I say about my last position since I obviously won't have a reference. Any advice? Thanks!



Anonymous said...

Don't dial back your care for children. All the loss of that job means is that you were with the wrong family. I feel bad for their child.

jessica said...

This happens ALL the time. And the kid doesn't need to accidentally call you mom. The kid might call you Dad. Might call out for you in his sleep, might run to you first for a bandaid, might hug you for a fraction of a second too long, might write a poem about you in school, might draw you as a part of their family in a picture, might talk about you too much on the weekend, might ask if you are going with them to a certain event or might just ask to sit next to you at a school event.

Yes, it happens all the time. And to all of you nannies who have been fired for being too damn good, why don't you get together and write a book?

What a bitch said...

I've had a 1 yr old call me mom several times too but they are just confused and outgrow it. All this shows is that you were clearly a great asset to the family who will no most likely be stuck with an abusive, nasty nanny. serves them right!
that "mom" is an envious bitch and i hope so rots in hell for being such a selfish human being. she clearly cares only about herself and not her kids!

Anonymous said...

That's really too bad. That Mom has issues. I am sorry for you.

Anonymous said...

You have done nothing wrong! At future interwievs, just tell the truth but without critisising the family...

sorry about my wrong (?) spelling, I'm not american/english

Maggie's Mommy said...

I am so sorry to hear that this happened to you - I hope you are paid on the books so you can collect unemployment and continue to support yourself. Their are agencies and parents who are familiar with this sort of situation, however, and if you have other outstanding references, might be able to help you find a new position. As a working parent, you understand how hard it is to find outstanding care for your child and you know as well as I do that a nanny who cares too much is all too uncommon. Instead, find a family that appreciates your commitment and level of caring. And put severance in your next contract!

Anonymous said...

wait the mom couldn't be a reference because she is still recovering from hearing the nanny called mom? who is this fragile, shitty woman? I bet she sucks in bed. women like that are just worthless. Imagine the number she is going to do on her kid with her neediness.

F them!

Anonymous said...

What a bitch/2:03
Maybe mom deserves to be served up on a platter ("it serves them right") ...
But those poor kids did nothing but love that poor nanny. They don't deserve the probably neglectful nanny dad will have to hire now because mom is too insecure.

what a bitch replies said...

when parents are like that their kids get ruined too, so yes i hope they get the worse, laziest nanny ever and come crawling back to OP only to get a screw u response from her former mary poppins. i don't wish any harm on those kids of course. just a pathetic unreliable nanny that makes her wish she never fired her nanny.

Anonymous said...

I can understand she was upset to hear her daughter call you mom. Maybe she thought you encouraged her to do that (not that you did)? Anyway, as a mom, I think I would be upset if that happened. I sah but can imagine she feels conflicted about being a working mom, and then hearing that doesn't help.
She clearly was not thinking rationally when she fired you. She might think back on it and realize it simply means you were doing a good job. I would let a couple weeks go by and ask for a reference when she calms down and )(hopefully!)realizes how she overreacted.

Anonymous said...

They are not a nice family. I would hate people like that. They should have paid you at least for two weeks, so you can look for another job. Jerks!

If they were claiming you on their taxes you should report them.

mnanny said...

Yes, you can be too good. There were times when the mom would come home and the kids wouldn't want to go to her. Once, she literally ripped her child out of my arms (almost 2 then) and he was crying for me. The mom started screaming at me "Just go, go now!!!" and she started crying.
It is sad to see that someone would feel threatened by you. She should be glad that you took such great care of her daughter and that her daughter felt so comfortable with you!!

Anonymous said...

No, of course you did nothing wrong, and you shouldn't tone down your affection for children you nanny. This is completely common for young children: one five-year-old girl whom I had only been sitting for a few weeks (so she clearly wasn't that attached to me) constantly called me Daddy, just out of habit (sometimes she'd giggle self-consciously and correct herself, other times she didn't even notice). She also called me Mommy, Jennifer, and Kimberly (two other nannies of hers). That mother was tremendously insecure, probably knowing she doesn't spend enough time with her daughter. They should not have fired you, and they certainly should have given you severance pay. What lousy people.

casey said...

to 2:53....darn right she wasnt thinking clearly!! I think the OP made it very clear she did not encourage being called I am wondering at your question mark.

OP...I just wish when my kids were small...I could have had someone like you in my home and my childrens lives. Maybe this mother should reconsider working...or does she want to hire someone hateful instead?

Anonymous said...

I agree with 2:53 pm, maybe she will calm down and give you a reference in a few weeks' time. I think firing you without compensation absolutely sucks, in any case. I would just tell the truth in later interviews, avoiding of course to criticize the family. At least the family you are interviewing with will know what kind of a nanny you truly are. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Anonymous said...

This is not a nice family.

When a child spends most of his/her waking hours with the nanny, of course he/she is going to consider the nanny his/her primary caregiver.

I am a nanny and I definitely draw a line. Call me cold but I'm careful not to offend my employers. I treat my kids like siblings and when the mother or father is there, I sort of fade away. Luckily, my kids have great parents.

ninefourteen said...

This really makes me mad. Sometimes kids that young just don't understand. I had my bosses son (whom I never saw except once watching him tear apart my office) He was at the office with his dad and he drew a picture of his family. He didn't draw his mom, he drew me. Then ran up to his mother to show her the picture. She asked, "who is that with the oragne hair" he answered and said my name (my hair is red and they didn't have any red highlighters) She looked at me like I was the devil. I never asked him to draw that picture, never said anything to him really. Yet I was there in his family. It was not like he wanted me to be his mom, he was just a friendly terribly roudy little boy.

The mother needs to get over her insecurities. My husbands EX still has issues with her son calling me mom. It got to the point where we had to tell him to stop because she would ground him for it. People are sick. They don't keep their kids feelings at heart.

cc said...

Op file for unemployment whether or not you are entitled to it. It will ask why you were terminated. Then make copies of it and mail it to everyone the crazy bitch knows.

If you dont qualify for unemployment, call the IRS main office and every associated office and report them for hiring illegals and paying off the books.

I am a working woman who pays her nanny on the books. I don't love it when my kids tell me on the weekend that I am doing something "wrong" because "Nanny does it this way". But the fact that she is so much a part of their lives and their thinking remind me everyday I have time how much to make the time count. My nanny causes me to elevate the kind of care I provide my children. Because I know she does all kinds of fun things with them all day long,even if I am dead tired, I make sure to do something with them every night. Sometimes it's a crossword puzzle or doing our nails together.

Any woman lucky enough to have a great nanny is a fool to do what these people did. And the father is likely ashamed his wife is such a pathetic loser. He just can't come right out and say so.

Anonymous said...

Never dial back on your affection. I am an employer who is comfortable with the relationship my nanny and I have with my children. I would never allow someone to care for my children who is cold to them. My nanny is very affectionate, attentive and playful with them to the point she is sometimes mistaken as their Mom by strangers and it makes me happy to know that she treats them so well. Sometimes when we are playing games, my kids have slipped and called me by my nanny's name and then look up and giggle when they realize what they said, just as they done when I'ver heard them slip and called her Mom, or even Dad. No big deal--just means that they know they have three adults who love and care for them in their lives.

Anonymous said...

BTW, on the reference question, line up other references--neighbors who may have seen you caring for the children, your pastor or clergyman, prior families you have done childcare for, even non-childcare jobs, anything that will attest to your character and reliability and relationship with kids. Then explain honestly and openly what happened with no sign of anger. Stress the positives of the prior position (the child, things you did and enjoyed, etc.) and don't come off as bitter or angry and you should be OK.

§marypoppin'pills§ said...

Jessica, great post.

Ninefourteen, that is really sad the the kid felt close enough to call you mom. Blended families have a hard enough time (specifically with the Stepmom getting the kids to like her), and here the Ex had to go and screw your relationship up like that? I'm sure it hurt the child that he couldn't call you mom anymore.

CC, good for you. Not only do you sound very secure in your relationship with your kids and Nanny ... you sound like a good Employer and Mom! ☺

Anonymous said...

During my tenure as a preschool teacher, I was frequently called "Mommy," even though my students' parents were twice my age! It's a comfort thing, and if that mom was that offended by her child calling the nanny "Mom," then she needs to rethink her role as a parent. Maybe she should work from home more often, to actually be with her children, and not just see them in passing at nighttime and on the weekends.

Anonymous said...

I'm really sorry that happened to you. It must hurt not only to loose your job but also not to get so say goodbye to the little girl who obviously was attached to you!

The only advice I can give you for future positions is to ask for a contract that stipulates two weeks notice for termination without cause. They can still ask you leave, but at least you'll get two weeks of salary while you look for another position.

Anonymous said...

I use to be a pre-k teacher and I got very close to a couple of the families. One of the them became like my second family considering im in college and dont have any family where im living.

Im very bonded with their 6 year old. For her birthday I took her to dinner and then I took her shopping. On our way to dinner she told me she loved me and asked if she could call me mom. I told her I loved her too and she was a silly goose and I quickly changed the subject. I didnt want to say yes but I also didnt want to say no because I didnt want to hurt her feelings.

When I took her home that night I stayed and chatted with her mom for an hour or so and I told what she had asked me. Her mom responded that it just shows how much love I give her and she wasnt upset about it at all.

Im sorry that your employer didnt feel the same way. Its sad that the child no longer has someone like you.

Anonymous said...

I use to be a pre-k teacher and I got very close to a couple of the families. One of the them became like my second family considering im in college and dont have any family where im living.

Im very bonded with their 6 year old. For her birthday I took her to dinner and then I took her shopping. On our way to dinner she told me she loved me and asked if she could call me mom. I told her I loved her too and she was a silly goose and I quickly changed the subject. I didnt want to say yes but I also didnt want to say no because I didnt want to hurt her feelings.

When I took her home that night I stayed and chatted with her mom for an hour or so and I told what she had asked me. Her mom responded that it just shows how much love I give her and she wasnt upset about it at all.

Im sorry that your employer didnt feel the same way. Its sad that the child no longer has someone like you.

Anonymous said...

It does happen a lot.

There's a recent article about it in the INA magazine. The person who ends up hurt the most in all this is the child. The mother is clearly selfish and utterly stupid and lacking in knowledge on attachment theory.

Children NEED safe, healthy attachments. With their parents, their caregivers, etc. It gives them confidence, the ability to trust, the ability to form deep relationships.

How is this child who grows up and every time they get attached to a caregiver, the mother yanks her away supposed to learn to have lasting relationships? All that selfish behaviour teaches the child is that when they come to love someone they will go away. It's absolutely horrible and heartbreaking.

I'm sorry it happened to you.

Anonymous said...

BTW here's the link to the article in the INA newsletter that nine nineteen mentioned:

Urban Mom in a Suburban Jungle said...

You did NOTHING wrong. I would leave out this position as a future ref. or be honest if you feel comfortable. I have actually had the little girl I nanny for say she WISHED I was her mom @ dance class and in front of everyone. I responded- "You have one mommy sweetie and she misses you too" as I know that was her way of verbalizing she wished her mom was these with her like I was at that moment. She calls me mom, dad, nana by ACCIDENT at least a few times a week just as I have heard her call her mom dad by mistake as well. Last week she called me dad in front of him and we all laughed. Hell I call her my nieces name or even my son's name, especially on a Monday or after vacation. An honest natural mistake! Geez relax mommies...

That mother over-reacted and is selfish. I'm sorry about what happened. I was dismissed by a family because the mother was jealous- it backfired on her big time as I am VERY well known in the community, in high demand and well respected. The moms around here hang out with me all the time. They won't give her the time of day now and she can't say a word.

I hope you find a new position soon and think about discussing issues like this with the new family pre-employment.

Good Luck

Anonymous said...

Just because you are not "on the books" doesnt mean it's illeagal or that you don't pay taxes. You can file at the end of the year as self employed and an indep. contractor. That was you will get ALL of the benifits, can write off TONS of stuff and if you are head of houshold with a child and make less than 40,000 ayear you will get a RETURN. It doesn't get the parents in trouble, you don't even have to provide who they are.

alex said...

The dad sounds horrible too, He could give you a reference letter.

I remember being little and accidently calling people like my teacher mom, I don't think it is a big deal. People call people the wrong names. It obviously stems from her having insecurities about not being there for her child or some other issue that she has. Obviously as you know, nothing that you did.

But to fire someone who loves your child is only going to hurt the child. I wish this mother and others could come to their senses. There is nothing wrong with your child loving someone else. They know you are their parent's and to have someone else they can trust in their life is amazing.

I'm not a nanny, but I do baby-sit and I love those kids like they were my own. The little girl called me her big sister. I was talking to her mom about it and she said mom/big sister. Not offended at all. I feel like I am a part of their family and they feel the same way. I just wish these people would see how blessed they are to have thoughtful, caring nannies who love their children. It is almost like they want horrible nannies so the kids do not get attached.

Anonymous said...

I say, if they won't give you severance or references, anonymously report them to the IRS. That is, if you were paid under the table.

I'm a nanny and I recently asked my employer to pay me on the books. They refused.

Anonymous said...

Don't these Parents realize that if the Nannies were so inclined, they could really get the Parents in trouble?
They have a lot more power than they're willing to admit, and should report these Parents (anonymously if they have to) ... for NOT paying them LEGALLY!

george said...

I don't undertstand that! If the child is comfortable enough with you to call you mom, isn't that a good thing?

My 5-year old calls me mom all the time. Now he calls me "Mom, I mean dad, I mean George"

And his mom just laughs about it. The first time it happened in her hearing, she giggled and said it was a great thing.

I'm sorry that happened, I have no advice. But I think if the child is calling you mom, you must be a great nanny! Hope you get your references!

MissDee said...

Some people have no heart. This mother sounded like rather cold and ignorant. There was no reason to fire you-now what is she going to do without you? Hire another nanny who doesn't compare to you? Have some uneducated, cold, and distant person watching her children when they clearly had a bond with you? And what will she tell her children when they ask for you? "Nanny had to leave because she found a new job", or "I fired your nanny because I am jealous of the bond she has with you"? Some people don't think!

As for the "mommy" debate, my ex fiance's daughter, almost 10, used to call me "mommy" in front of her own mother. And what was funny was that my ex was black and his daughter was his complexion, not her mother's. When his grandma passed away a few years ago, his daughter didn't want to leave my side-she didn't want to be with her mother at all. Her mother saw how we interacted, and made smart comments about how if I didn't know anything about anything I should keep my mouth shut. His daughter is tall and skinny (just like her daddy) and at the funeral dinner, I made a comment to her mother about what size shoes to buy her daughter. The mother, at a funeral, in front of her mother, my ex mother, aunt and cousins, looked at me and said she would send a detailed list of everything her daughter needed for me to buy because I had money. Everyone looked at her like she lost her mind. At the birthday party a few months later, to which I didn't attend on the advice of my ex's mother, his daughter was going to have her picture taken and "mom" was bout the snap the camera when his daughter sees me walking toward the birthday party, and yells, "Mommy Danielle! Mommy Danielle"! Her mother was PISSED! His daughter stuck to me like glue and her mother says, "I don't care who came to this party. They weren't supposed to be here anyway. Get over her for this picture or you gonna get yer butt whipped". The mother didn't even acknowledge me, and my ex was laughing her mother, displaying her ignorance. The first time she saw me was in the summer, and I'm sitting in the car, waiting for him to get his daughter. Her mother was holding her newborn sister, sees me sitting in the car and yells, "she's white! she's white! He's gotta white girl!" This was up and down the entire block, and everyone on that block was black. The entire block looked at me, with my long blonde hair and dark blue eyes. Was he pissed? Yeah and he told her not to say anything to me again, which then again, she was mad because I was dating him and mad that her own daughter didn't even want her. And why didn't her daughter want her? Lack of attention, among other things. The baby sister, light skinned with light eyes was given everything brand new-shoes, clothes, toys, etc, while my daughter had to have second hand things or nothing at all. My daughter had brand new things, back at her mother's, they would be ruined next time I saw her in them. Her baby sister? Nothing was dirty. Everything was perfect for her. My daughter would have to babysit her sister and brother while the mother was there, doing nothing. My daughter would have to clean the house, wash dishes, etc. while the mother did nothing. When she would come to her daddy's for the weekend, we would do fun things, and she got to be a kid. At her mother's, she wasn't a kid. She was the mother.

My point of this story is that sometimes mother do feel threatened by the bond that their children have with other caregivers. Some parents are emotionally deattatched, (my dad was like that due to my mother's death) other's don't bond with their child. Perhaps that this mother didn't make time for her children, which is why they called you mom. Either way, it was wrong for her to fire you. Keep us posted OP!

*hugs OP*

Anonymous said...

Hi Everyone, thanks for all the great advice! I have a few interviews set up for next week so please wish me luck!

I miss the children I used to care for so much, but I know I have to just move on. I don't plan on reporting them or seeking revenge because I feel no true good will come from that. If anything, the mom will wallow in her own hell because she is so selfish and I am sure she will take her husband with her. I do feel sorry for the children because I worry about what their next nanny will be like and I am praying they get a good one.

Thanks again!

§marypoppin'pills§ said...

You have good moral character. I hope you do well and go far.
I wish you the best of luck finding a really great Family.

Anonymous said...

Hi OP, thanks for keeping us posted. Wrongdoing usually brings its own pusnishment, so you are right not to waste any time on them. I am sure you will soon find a good family who will truly appreciate you.

Just Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry this happened to you! I would do one of two things when interviewing: tell them the truth, or, leave it off your resume completely and say you used that year to be a stay-at-home-mom for your teenager. You could say you had family support during that year off of work, or whatever. I think any normal family would understand that this situation is uncalled for. And any family who doesn't understand it wouldn't be worth being your next family to work for. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

I think the above advice to lie about your last year is dead wrong! Be honest, and if your previous refs. are stellar a reasonable employer should understand. I would not seek a letter of ref. from jealous mom, or her husband, because even if she cools off and writes a decent letter, when she speaks with prospective employers on the phone, she may be negative.
Good luck on your interviews, you sound like a great nanny.
A Nanny

Anonymous said...

OP, first off, you did nothing wrong. Secondly, where do you live? Perhaps someone on ISYN is looking for a new caregiver?

Anonymous said...

This is horrible. Mothers wshould be happy as heck that a child is that comfortable with you to call you mom. As long as you correct and explain to the child why he or she should not call you mom then that is okay. I have had kids call me mom and then giggle as I have called them by my kids name also. This just shows the great bond and heck of a lot of love we have for each other. And the moms are fine with it. But that;s because I work for real women, not bitches

Park slope nanny!

Anonymous said...

What a disgusting family. I know it's hard now, they really screwed you and inconvenience you to no end but you are better off without them. It sucks to do a great job and not get a reference. The last people I nannied for I no longer use as reference because I found out they were saying negative things to other parents about me that were lies. It is unfair but you can't use a wacko as a reference. It's better in the long run that this happend now and you see their true colors. God forbid you had not seen the truth and had used them for a reference and they said something to the effect of "well she turned my children against me." people are wackos and will lie. this mother has severe issues. her poor family. and the husband is just as bad: he must be a wacko to put up with her and enable her horrible behavior.
Good luck op, you will be fine.

§marypoppin'pills§ said...

I agree with the posts that suggest forgetting the reference.
You could have a potentially wonderful job lined up and they call this nut to check up on you and she could ruin everything.
Do you really want to trust her after what she did to you?
I say start over fresh, be honest, but try to leave out any negative details. You want to avoid looking bad.
I'm sure you will find a Family 10x's better than what you had, you sound like a really great Nanny!
.... and Karma will take care of that heartless Mom.

Anonymous said...

Be honest. It's the right thing to do, and you sound like a really good person and a great nanny. Don't give anyone any reason to doubt this by misrepresenting things.

Sharing the reason you were fired (without slamming the family) will also weed out other neurotic moms who are clueless when it comes to the well-being of their children. You'll find the match you need, and the family that really deserves you. Good luck.

cali mom said...

OP, what a horrible person you worked for. I worry for children of "parents" who have such major issues as that. My boy accidentally calls me Dadda and his dad Mama pretty regularly, the same way my grandma used to rattle off mine and both my sister's names until she hit on the right one whenever she was talking to any of us.

My prediction is this "mom" will hire some cold-faced slug who won't last long and will then either cycle through more bad nannies in quick rotation endlessly, or call you back begging for you to help her out again.

I'd go with the honest approach, and NOT lie about what you did for the last year, but be very upfront about what caused the position to come to a sudden end, and explain that you have not been able to get a reference from them, because the mom is still coping with the experience. Any reasonable family *should* be able to accept and understand that, and if they can't or won't, they are probably not people you want to work for anyway.

Cyn said...

I am so sorry that you lost your job OP but you are better off without that woman in your life. I am so sorry for that little girl because now she will have learned to trust people less. I bet that the mom won't even tell her that she fired you because she was jealous, strike that, she might tell her that she fired you because she called you mom making the poor child feel at such an early age guilt and blame herself. Teaching her to be insecure. I can't believe that the mom is this insecure and so guilt ridden that she would react like this. She is only thinking about her own feelings she never thought of her daughters or she would have thought twice about firing you. There are so many parents who think "oh, they are young, they will get over it". No, always treat kids with the knowledge that whatever you do or say to a child will impact their lives, no matter their age. They are sponges, they soak up everything, everything impacts them one way or another and when you teach them not to trust or that everyone they love will leave them them, that is one more child who will grow into an adult with relationship problems. Don't dial back how you treat your charges OP, continue loving them and teaching them what good, strong, healthy relationships are all about.

Miss Dee I am so sorry you had to come across someone like that. I know the kind of person you are talking about. She treats the baby who is light skinned with light eyes better than her older daughter who looks like her dad and has her dad's color. That is the reason why the child likes you better, because you treat her better than her mom does. The mom is jealous of you because you got the affections of her ex and then you got the affections of her daughter so she takes it out on her own flesh and blood by treating her like crap and punishing her. She is essentially blaming you for the loss of her daughter's affection when it is her own jealousy that is doing that. Who would love a mother who doesn't treat you as if she loves you. I am so sorry for this little girl but she will rebel, she is almost a teenager so that mom will get it all back tenfold. I just hope that the love you gave her will guide her so that she doesn't go waaay off on an angle and get lost.

atl nanny said...

I'm so glad that you have a few interviews lined up. Obviously you are a wonderful nanny, and I hope you find an equally wonderful family. As for what to tell families during the interviews about your last job, my advice is to be honest wihtout getting into detail. Explain that you loved your job and that they never had a complaint about the quality of your work, but that you parted ways badly because the mother was threatened by your bond with the child. Then produce references who can verify how good you were with your last charge -- neighbors, preschool teachers, etc.

I was in a similar position a few years back. I had worked for a family for over three years and had been an wonderful employee. I was never late, never absent and I was wonderful to the boys. But we parted badly because my employers were having financial trouble and wanted me to take a significant paycut, which I could not afford to take. When I refused, they refused to give me a reference. I explained the situation briefly in interviews and produced glowing references from neighbors, etc., who verified my story. I wound up with a MUCH better job, and I hope you will be too.

§mpp§ said...

Wording is everything. You want to be honest, but I would be careful how you tell them what happened.
I'm sure you know that insulting the mom is a no-no in the Interview. That's only common sense.
But I also think the most important thing would be wording how you lost your job because saying the mother was "jealous of your bond with the child" ... just doesn't sound good.
How about:
I was with this family (x) years, and they never had a complaint. I really enjoyed my job, but in the end was let go because I think the mother wanted to bond more with her daughter. She felt as if her daughters relationship with me was causing theirs to suffer, and I was let go. (Or something close to that)
You want to avoid certain words such as:
threatened, jealous, fired ... you get the idea.
Good Luck! Let us know what happens!

Anonymous said...

I stopped being a Nanny about 2 months ago and opened a home daycare. I have 2 2yr old girls that both call me Momma. I tell their Moms about it and they think it is cute. They say that that makes them feel much better about leaving them because the girls obviously see me as a nurturing caring person.

You are a better person than I am. I would have reported them to the IRS in a heartbeat!

Anonymous said...

If I were blessed with the resources to have a wonderful nanny, etc...I would be FINE with my child calling the nanny "Mommy", "Nanny" "Nana" "Mom" "Mummy" or any other endearment.
What on earth is wrong with a child feeling so loved by both his/her parents and caregiver?
Very young children KNOW who their actual parents are, and they often call their nannies, grandmothers or even teachers "Mommy" out of devotion. It's perfectly normal and natural attachment behavior.

Anonymous said...


Well said.

MissDee said...

4:22-Thanks! Unfortunately, her father and I broke up last year, due to his ungratefulness and lack of maturity. I loved my daughter and her father, and when dating someone with a child, it can be hard to accept children in the relationship. This was no problem for me, and her father, who deep down loved me, didn't realize what he had when he had it, so I dumped him last year. I often think about my daughter, and pray that she will not end up running away and in foster care.

Why laugh at her? said...

Missdee I am in a VERY similar type of situation as you were so I understand what you went through
But I am sorry, that was the most annoying thing I've read all day. We're you young when that happened? Because you sound like you handled it poorly. While you may have given that child better care and more love you should never had downplayed her mother's role in her life. I don't and you shouldn't have. Sorry, also was she a single mother? That can be hard and oftentimes the oldest has to pitch in. Also, a different set of grandparents could have been providing the items for the baby. You seem highly judgemental, so you know, I thought I would tell you about yourself....I do apologize though.

MissDee said...

11:08-My daughter's mother was a single mom with 3 kids (now 5) by 3 different men, didn't work, collected W-2 (welfare), WIC, rent assistance and other government funding. She wasn't in school and didn't work. All she did was sit home all day and eat. I was with her father for a little over three years, so no, I wasn't young when this happened. Her mother is mean and I didn't stand for it, yet I had enough respect for her mother not to get into fights with her. Hghly judgemental? You mean because I wouldn't take her mother's verbal and emotional abuse? How EXACTLY was I supposed to handle it? I think I handled it the best way I could.

MissDee said...

11:08-What I meant to say was that I wasn't going to stand for her mother's treatment, how she verbally and emotionally abused her my daughter. So if that makes me "highly judgemental" then it does.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry this happened to you. This mom sounds heartless, paranoid, and very insecure.

I am a public school teacher and almost all of my students have called me mom on accident.

I don't correct them, obviously they know they made a boo-boo.

In fact, I remember calling my own teachers "mom" before on accident.

Again, I am so sorry. :(

Anonymous said...

My nanny kid does things like this all the time to me..and she is 5! I have been with her for 3 years, and I don't think her parents mind, because what's the alternative? Having a nanny your kids don't respond to? No thanks! Find a new and appreciative family pronto!! You can use other references, such as neighbors in the neighborhood you might have grown close with, or even babysitting references..just nail the interview! Good luck!

Why laugh at her again said...

Missdee, interesting, she sounds VERY familiar!! I just diss her with my girlfriends. I never do it to her face that's not my job, it's their father's. I never show my disgust to the children. It's been hard, I know, I am sure you did the best you could given these type's of things are sooo complex. By the way I really shouldn't have been harsh to you. I guess it was just late at night and since I could relate a little of my(pent up maybe) resentment against others rubbed off on you! Sorry again!

MissDee said...

11:55-I dissed my daughter's mother to my best friend too, and my ex's mother would diss her granddaughter's mother as well. *LOL* It's OK, sweetie, I forgive you!

Anonymous said...

You're adorable, but your posts make me dizzy!

Anonymous said...

A California nanny here. They are 100% in the wrong! I suppose they have the right to their own opinions and can employ whoever they wish, but they sure didn't have the best interests of their child in mind. This is very sad. I've been called "Mommy" a billion times and this has been often times right at the start of a position. Many children are used to saying Mommy mommy mommy and daddy daddy daddy, so this is just habit for the girl.

Unfortunately, the Mother in your situation is very jealous and would perhaps do better with her children in a daycare or somewhere more children will be there and there won't be the threat of a Nanny actually doing a good job and connecting with her children.

I bet many grade school teachers have accidentally been called Mommy and I bet you didn't see their acutal Mothers going and switching their kid to another class.

In your future interviews...TELL THE TRUTH! This is very important, as you will then get a good honest reaction from the new family and see if you might be having the same issue. I work for an amazing family who encourages lots of attention and love and hugs and kisses all from me and there is no reason that every child shouldn't have just one more person in their life that loves and cares for them.

You worked for a very selfish mother.

Anonymous said...

Excellent post.

New SAHM, Former Nanny said...

As a former nanny, I have been called mommy by all the charges I have been with by accident at least once in thier care. Even at the daycare I worked at, kids accidentally call thier caregivers mom.

This is just the child trying to figure out relationships. They see you all day long, so they assume you deserve the same title as the person they see all night long (or seldom, depending on the case).

I would say, continue in the path you are going with correction anytime this error is made. I always addressed it as "guess again silly goose, wrong name."

I guess I equate this with the slip ups parents make when they call thier kid the wrong name... you know, "jake, no john, no I mean Sam come here."

This mom was just very sensitive about the fact and I am sure she feels guilty about the situation in a way you might not understand. Trust me, if you are a great nanny, she will quickly find that you are not as replaceable as she thought and she will feel awful at such a rash decision.

mom said...

Obviously the mom suffers tremendous guilt about the way she is raising her child. Hearing her daughter call you mom was the last straw and she obviously snapped.

No, she should never have blamed you ar fired you in the way she did. And you deserved a big severance check and a glowing recommendation. I understand how she felt, but she was selfish to take it out on you in any way. Some people are just not big enough to look beyond how a situation affects them personally sometimes. I feel bad for her daughter, and for you.

Now that the damage has been done, let's at least hope that she did something productive with her pain and misguided anger and is actively working out a way to raise her daughter in a way that she can feel good about. I am sorry for you, but at least maybe this situation will turn out to be a great change in the course of this child's life. One can hope anyway.

Anonymous said...

such pettiness, people

Anonymous said...

"working out a way to raise her daughter in a way that she can feel good about...........but at least maybe this situation will turn out to be a great change in the course of this child's life."

By that I assume you mean the mom staying home. Since the mom puts her own emotional needs before her child's, I don't think the change is going to be an improvement over a loving nanny. Face it, not all biological moms are good at parenting.

mom said...

10:35 You're right. Not all biological parents can be good.

However, I am choosing to hope/believe that this mom's angst results from a deep caring for her daughter and a realization that she can/should be doing more with and for her child. She wants what she saw the nanny having with her daughter. That could be a very good sign.
Pain and guilt (even though they do not feel good) are actually a good sign at times...evidence of conscience and caring.

My suspicion is that a lot of the very worst moms are so far removed from their children and their children's needs and feelings that they are incapable of the feelings the mom from this post displayed. I think that for many of them, as long as they don't have to think about the child much or at all, they are perfectly happy.

Anonymous said...

Op Here!

Just wanted to let all of you know I got a new job with a wonderful family. I was honest about my last position and they thought the mom was insane! This new person I work for said she would be so happy if her kids called me mom because it would mean she definitely hired the right person.

Thanks for all the great advice!

Lorenza said...

Good for you! Perhaps you can come back in the not too distant future to update us about how you are doing. Take care. Lorenza

Anonymous said...

I got fired because the mother felt that her adopted baby girl bonded more to me than to her in the short time I was there. Now I am worried because I have been with a family for 3 years and the mom seems to have severe p.m.s. During that time of the month, she puts me down constantly and got VERY angry because I asked for my
W2 forms, I only asked once! The putdowns are very hard to take but I love the 3 little girls. I am also a single mom supporting 2 sons and rely on the income but I hate being treated like this and fear for my job. I do my best to support the mom and reinforce the fact that I am not the mother constantly.

Sorry to hijack, sound like a very good person who got a bad deal. I have accidentally been called mom, grandma, and even dad by mistake sometimes. You will find more children to love!

§mpp§ said...

You need to find another job, sweetie. I know it's easier said than done ... but do you really want to go into work everyday, wondering if it's going to be your last?
This Mom sounds like she has more than PMS, and you deserve to be treated with more respect!
Please get out.
You are probably very stressed out because of her - why do that to yourself? It's not worth it.


Im a Nanny and the little girl sometimes call me Mom or at her Mom sometimes she call her by my name.. and we dont think that is wrong..
I dont understand that Mom she just care by herself and he is being selfish how good is to have someone who take care the kids with so much love and attention !!!


Anonymous said...

I'm really sorry .... but, HUH???

Anonymous said...

My 4 year old son calls me Dad even though I'm his Mom. I guess my husband should get rid of me, too. What jerks. I hope you've found something better by now!