My old charge and her new nanny....

Received Wednesday, May 21, 2008-Perspective & Opinion
I was at my previous job for 15 months when I had to leave for unusual circumstances. I am now working for a different family and I see my old charge and her new nanny out and about at story times, etc. I have noticed that this nanny shows up to the story time location on time with the child, but does not come to attend the actual reading of the stories until they are reading the last page of the last book. It bothers me Because I still adore the little girl and I think she's getting shafted of her time. Also, when I worked with this little girl she was bubbly and social, and now she just sits in the stroller and never smiles. Is there anything I can/should do about this, like tell my prior bosses? Or am I simply a bystander now that I don't work for them?


UmassSlytherin said...

It sounds to me as if you are projecting. What were the unusual circumstances under which you left the nanny job? I would be curious to know.
As far as this new nanny, if she is not mistreating the child, there is really nothing you should do about it. What would you say to the parents: "the new nanny sucks compared to me?" It would make you sound silly, in my opinion.
While you may adore this child, she now has a new caregiver. If the caregiver chooses to let the child sit at storytime by herself, and the child is not being disruptive, what is the problem with that? It sounds like a small thing to me.
It also seems questionable that the child has never laughed and has sat in the stroller since you left this position.

mom said...

I am curious about your comment about the nanny not attendiong the story until the last page. When my kids went to storytime I used to read my own book in a comfy leather chair while they listened to the story lady. They thought they were "at school," which was a huge treat for them...and they didn't want mommy "at school" with them, because that might mean they were less "big" than they wanted to imagine that they were. (We even packed a "real lunchbox" to take along for afterward.) And for me, free time to read was an incredible luxury in those days.
I'm not sure nanny has to listen to the story to be aq good nanny...unless maybe your library does it differently and the parents/nannies and children somehow interact during the reading.

Anonymous said...

Probably non of your business. You are not in charge of the new nanny. As a mom I would find it very strange if the former nanny came and complained about the new one.

kathleencares said...

I agree with the other comments, it is probably not appropriate for you to contact the parents with this. I think it is OK that the new nanny doesn't sit with the kid at story time, but that is strange that the kid is less bubbly and happy then before. You obviously really care about the child, but I would hold off on getting involved unless you see the new nanny do something that is really problematic.

Anonymous said...

I disagree with the above posts. OP, I read it as both the nanny and the charge didn't attend the reading until the last page (my guess would be so she could tell the mom they went to story time.) If that's the case tell the mom, I would want to know. Tell her in a way so that she knows you have a new job and are happy, you are not judging the new nanny but that you still adore her daughter and wanted to let her know.

marypoppin'pills said...

Well, I'm going to go against the grain here.
You know this child. You took care of her for over a year, and now you are noticing changes in her behavior. And yes, that could be a sign ... but I would be very cautious, especially since you don't give the reason you left your position.
That's actually very important - if you were terminated for any reason related to the care of the child, you may come off as vindictive if you warn the Parents about the child's new Nanny.

Without a little more information, it's kind of hard to advise you on what to do. Either way, please keep an eye on the little girl, it does sound like you have her best interest at heart because you came here for advice first before running to the Mom.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't go ratting the nanny out, but I'd definitely keep my eyes peeled next time you see them out. You may be onto something.

Also, I agree with you 12:48. I too was under the impression that they both showed up at the end, not just the nanny...How often does this happen?

OP, you say you see them at story times and "ETC ETC." Where else? Do you notice any odd behavior these places? Does the child seem listless everywhere or just story time?

UmassSlytherin said...

agreed! OP, lets hear from you...

Anonymous said...

I know just how you feel.I understand why you feel that way too.
Some of us take great pride in being a nanny. we do not just observe the children, dress them, feed them keep them safe. some of us, play with them, read to them and love watching them learn and interact with other children. We enjoy talking & playing with them and cannot imagine missing out on watching their eyes light up at story time!

I was a nanny for a wonderful family for just over 3 years. I was with them from the time their oldest was just 2 months..and 9 months later they had twins! I had my hands full but loved those babies.I asked mom to buy a triple stroller so I could remain active with all the babies as I had with the 1st! She did. Every day we went for walks or to the park, I even ventured to Walmart or Target on occassion to do some of mom & dads shopping.We did story time at the library. We read, age 2 the oldest was very happy and friendly..the babies were also very happy. They had a fabulous schedule and the day ran smoothly.

However, soon after the twins were born Mom brought in a night time nanny..Our shifts overlapped by an hour..that was the end for me..she was rude,lazy and made fun of the kids when mom was not around.Telling them they were fat and such.(She was of a different culture and I am appalled at some of the things she would say to these babies)
I went to mom with my concerns..I tried very hard to remain objective.she seemed surprised and told me that she did not see any of that but would keep her eyes open.
Things proceeded just as they had been though.

This nanny went so far as to one day bark an order at me..and on occassions she would order me to answer the phone when it rang as she was expecting a call.

I again went to mom and said..this is not ok...pls deal with it.

Needless to say..I gave my notice a few weeks later.
I actually quit my job because I could not stand to see what was happening to these girls and it broke my heart that I was unable to protect them.

I went to visit a few months later with my own daughter.
It was horrible.
The sweet, playful little girls that I had known were now , mean and unruly..they did not listen nor were they willing to share any of their toys with my daughter,which they had always done before.They were no longer independent and curious but clingy ,whiney and content to sit in front of the tv. I left just 15 minutes into what was suppossed to be an hour visit.
I came home and cried!I was literally sick with disgust.

My husband, informed me that she worked cheaper and she was available to them all hours of the day and night
and that is why mom & dad allowed me to quit and kept her on.They needed her.
Just like have no right to say anything to mom and dad..they made a choice and they are well aware of the difference in the care their child is now getting!


shel said...

Like some of the other commentors, I thought the OP meant that neither the child nor the nanny went to storytime until it was almost over. It could mean that nanny doesn't feel like attending fully. I also thought that perhaps the little one is more interested in other stuff at the library and isn't interested in going to story time, but nanny gets her to at least go to the end. I know the 2 year old I care for is so into picking out books herself right now and doing the puzzles in the kid area. She'd totally miss storytime for that.

However, I know for a fact that a few of my employers WOULD want me to say something if I saw their child out with the new nanny and something seemed out of sorts. I am no longer their nanny, but I am still a part of their child's lives. If this is the case with the OP, perhaps she should mention that the situation seemed a bit odd to her. From there the parents can do what they please.

mom said...

OP can you clarify abut the story time? It obviously makes a big difference in how we are going to respond.
If I read your post wrong and you think the new nanny is dishonest and purposely misleading the parents about how she treats their child then they need to know.

It will matter, as some have said, what the circumstances of your leaving were, as to how they may view your comments. Be sure they know you are NOT wanting your job back...and perhaps just suggest that they attend a few story time sessions on the sly so they can determine for themselves if this is how they want thier daughter raised.

Anonymous said...

If you left that family on good terms, then tell them about it. But if they fired you, then let them live with the mess that they made.

mom said...

Don't let the child live with the mess the parents have made. That's not fair to the child. After all, isn't this all about the children...not how we can get back at parents through their innocent children?
If the child is being poorly cared for the parents need to know...for the sake of the child. It's each of our duty to do our best in that regard. End of story.

Anonymous said...

How compassionate of you!
Please tell me you're not a nanny!!

Why should the kids be made to suffer because the parents possibly made an err in judgement?
What is wrong with people these days.

Liv said...

Does the nanny know that you are the previous nanny? Maybe you could introduce yourself sometime. Take a minute to chat about the little girl and her family. Then see if she acts differently next time. Maybe that will clear up whether she is trying to be dishonest or not. If she is, knowing that someone connected to the family is watching her will probably scare her straight.

fox in socks said...

OP, speak up. If you are wondering whether there is enough of an issue to speak up about, then there probably is. If it were your own child, you'd want to know. So be brave and say something. This kind of b.s. treatment of children, by people who are actually *paid* to provide great care, is ridiculous. It can only continue on in society if people don't speak up. So, speak up. The family will be thankful if you approach them gently, politely, and with care, but be direct and tell them that what you see really concerns you. Thanks for watching out for that child. And please let us know what happens!

just anonymous said...

OP here:
Both the nanny and the child do not attend until the very end. When I worked for them the Mom liked to know what stories had been read at the story time, making me think the nanny comes at the end to glance at the books that were read.

mimi said...

I had this in reverse....I was the new nanny for a newly turned 2 year old. I jumped right into old nannies routine, and learn etc....All this sweet little girl did was sit and observe, I asked all the people in charge if this was because of me being new to her or if she had been that way. Her kindermusik teacher said old nanny sat and never encouraged SOOOO form that day forward I insisted on play and try...and she became a super playful bubbly kiddo in weeks...she went from looking like I was crazy when I be-bop'd to music in the car to swaying in the carseat....The moral is not every nanny is a good nanny and they probably didn't pick a winner this time around. Play it by ear, you'll know when it's time to say something.

undercover regular said...

Good advice, liv.

Anonymous said...


I am confused by your post. You were there 3 years; you started when oldest was 2mo, twins were born 9 months later, and mom hired a new night nanny shortly after that. You quit fairly soon after the night nanny came on because of the snippiness, etc... so how is that 3 years? At most it sounds about a year...

Anonymous said...

Yes, discuss this with your former-employers.
You loved your charge when you were her nanny. You still love her, right?
So voice your concerns with her parents and then let them do what they think is best.

It's the right thing to do.

Anonymous said...

"fox in socks" that is the cutest screen name I've seen in a long time! lol

Good advice, too.

OP said...

OP again-
yeah, I guess y'all are right, she's just not the 'best' nanny, but I guess there is no neglect so nothing I can do. I just love the little girl to death. I'm the one who posted awhile back about my bosses firing me immediately after I had a miscarriage. So those were my unusual circumstances, and as much as I love the girl, I don't owe them anything. Maybe I'll just try avoiding the locations on the days they go.

mpp said...

How sad, OP.
I hope you are doing better now?

OP said...

Yes, much better! Thanks for asking!