Wednesday

Nanny from hell is alive and well and working in....

Received Wednesday, May 7, 2008-Perspective and Opinion
I have a problem I would like some advice on. I have been friends with a woman for about 5 years she is also a nanny. She told me recently that she is burned out by nannying and does not enjoy her current job as much as her last where she had a lot of daytime freedom. I did not really see her in her job i.e. how she relates to the children, looks after their needs and the house etc. I only know her on a personal basis. I recently was at the home where she works visiting her and what I saw was a bit surprising. She curses in front of both children (4,2.5) and not just a damn here or there it was full on cursing (f, mf etc). Also it was beautiful outside and they have a great back yard I was there for an hour and a half and the kids watched tv the whole time and she told me they had been watching for about 3 HOURS! while she was online or on the phone. She also told me this is the norm for their day. While I was there both children asked for a drink and some sort of snack she said "Hold on you just had breakfast an hour ago" this was 1pm! I asked her if she really meant breakfast and she said "Yeah I was busy and lost track of time" busy meaning IMing with her boyfriend as she was still doing then. I am friends with this person but really think she should not be a nanny. She makes an excellent nanny wage, more than I do and I work twice as hard, and the parents are nice people. I'm just really worried that she has a negative impact on these children. How should I handle this situation? Should I confront her and tell her I think she needs to find a new job? Should I anonymously tell the parents? We are not extremely close friends but I do not want to see her lose her income and perhaps not be able to find a new job if she gets fired. I would feel as if I betrayed her but on the other hand these kids are suffering at her hand. I'd like to hear from all of you what your thoughts are. Thanks.

43 comments:

Seattlenanny said...

Holy CRAP! This person should NOT be working with kids. Send the family a link to this site ASAP!

Anonymous said...

THis is a stupid post, Of course you should tell someone, it's bordering on neglect. Grow up and tell someone. I hate stupid people!

TX Nanny said...

Seattlenanny my thoughts exactly. I don't know if you can get the parents email but maybe you can leave an anonymous letter in their mailbox. Obviously you're a good person since this bothered you and while I can understand your worries about getting your friend fired the bigger picture is this poor family. If she gets fired you should tell her to look for another kind of job since she is very obviously burnt out. Maybe visit again and when she's yaking on the phone say something to the 4 year old that he or she will repeat to mom and dad , like don't you wish you had a nanny who played with you? Kids will repeat things like this.

Anonymous said...

9:38 I most certainly am not stupid, if you have nothing productive to say please refrain from saying anything I will deal with this I just want to know who to deal with and how to do it. It's a hard position to be in. The children are not in danger, she looks out for that she's just not doing a good job. JC if they were in danger I would of course tell someone. I can't stand when people post comments calling someone's post stupid. That's not why people post here.

TX Nanny said...

I usually don't comment on the a-holes who just spew unhelpful crap on here but 9:38 grow up and shut up.

JerseyXJacqui said...

calm down, 9:38. "Grow up and tell someone, god I hate stupid people," is hardly a convincing display of YOUR assumed intelligence.

OP, yes you should tell someone.
Don't worry about betraying her, especially considering she's not a good friend. Worry about her charges, first and foremost.

anonymous1 said...

please do what is best for the children and what your conscience dictates

Marissa M. said...

She shouldn't even receive a pay check for her "work". Call her employers ASAP!!!

marypoppin'pills said...

OP
I'm glad you're going to step in and do the right thing.
But I do hope you realize that this may very well result in her "loss of income", and that really shouldn't be a concern of yours. The children are more important.

She's not earning that money, so why does she deserve it? Hopefully with your friendship and guidance she will find another job quickly ... just make sure it's not as a Nanny!

I know you don't want your friend to know that you're the one reporting her behavior, right? You care about her, but don't want to lose that friendship.

I suggest finding out where Mom works, if you don't already know, and make an anonymous call to her. Tell her that you don't want her Nanny to know you're doing this, but she should make an unexpected visit. Hopefully with what you've told the Mom, and her coming home and catching the Nanny, your friend won't know it was you.

Thank you for stepping up for the kids ... what a shame YOU can't be their Nanny.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Anonymous said...

I wouldnt just tell the mom to make an anonymous visit. That might imply that something worse was going on. As soon as she hears the car pull in she will turn off the tv and pick up a book. If you do talk to the mom just say that her kids are safe but that the nanny isn't really engaging them and doing activities with them. She is just babysitting more or less. If she is paid well mom is probably expecting more. But, maybe mom just wants someone there watching the kids. At least by letting her know she can make the choice as to whether or not this is a right fit.

Anonymous said...

sorry that shouldn't say anonymous but rather a random unannounced visit.

Anonymous said...

Are you serious? This site has encouraged Parents time after time to make random unannounced visits.
If you had children, you wouldn't keep close tabs on them, especially if you heard something untoward about your nanny?
Please don't advise against this, it is naive and potentially dangerous.

Whether or not mom catches nanny up to no good because nanny quickly turns off the t.v. and picks up a book for the kid pretending to read (and here you make a good point) - mom is still going to be notified of nannies poor behavior.
And however OP works it out with the mom, bottom line (if she wants to remain anonymous) - is to tell the mom confidentially, then let mom work out what she needs to do.

Anonymous said...

Oh, sorry - but the reason behind mom making the visit was more or less to protect the OP's friendship. Otherwise, how is mom going to get away with firing the nanny? She will catch her doing something wrong, especially if the nanny isn't expecting her and mom sneaks in under the guise of a blaring t.v.!

Anonymous said...

OP
I have a terrific idea, I think.
Tape your friend M'effing and cussing and send it to the mom.
Attach a note:
This is what your nanny is doing when you're not around!!

Anonymous said...

Unannounced visits are key, if you cannot do it, ask a relative or friend to pop by or observe the nanny where she is allegedly not doing her job. And all you parents should randomly check in with your nannies. Some of you might be surprised just how wonderful your nannies are. I see tears coming to your eyes, you are chocked up, unable to move, frozen in deep thought as you watch your glorious nanny interacting with your glorious children. Glorious.

Anonymous said...

I am a mother and those children are not supposed to be the victims of her misery. Me personaly if I was in your shoes i wouldn’t care about my friend ship with my friend as much as i would care about those kids they are innocent. Please tell the parents and you can stay anonymous. Think if it was your kids you wouldn’t want them to be treated like this. By telling the parents your actually saving those kids from maybe further abuse. And as to your friend she will find another job maybe not as a nanny with little kids but older. Please save those kids.

Anonymous said...

Here are the steps you can take:
1) email this post using the 'email this post' button to anyone you know. it asks for your email address, you can use someone else's or a made up one. you probably know where the employers work, find the email address of someone who works there, for example at my company, all names are first initial followed by last name @ and our company name.net Email as many people as you can about this person and email it from different people. Email some other mothers is a good bet. Email the school.

11:08 said...

I wasn't advising AGAINST drop ins. I was saying that just telling mom to "drop in" wouldn't be enough in this situation. She would have no idea what the potential problem was and instead might think it is something way worse. If she shows up and everything looks peachy she might just think the OP was wrong. If OP describes what is going on then Mom will better know what to look for and be aware that it could be covered up. Mom could still do drop ins to try catch the Nanny but she needed more information than just "hey drop in."

Stephanie M, Manhattan said...

I hear you 12:19. I totally got that. I would do the email thing. You can also add a message in the email. Please add my message,

Dear fellow working mother,
Your nanny must be putting quite an act on for you and your husband. She ignores your children all day long while she pursues her own recreational plans. You aren't the first or the last mother to be fooled by one of these class A phonies. Believe me, I have been there. Please come home early unannounced or leave in the morning and return an hour later to see what is really going on. It is your house and they are your children.

Regards,
Stephanie M, Manhattan

aliana said...

i am so sick of hearing about all these crapy nannies making a lot of money and not doing their job
you need to tell the parents right away, she does not deserve the job, this boil my blood
by the way i am a nanny

Anonymous said...

friend of bad nanny,
a) are you a nanny?
b) did this nanny sleep with your boyfriend?
c) do you want this nanny's job?

Anonymous said...

I do not want to see her lose her income and perhaps not be able to find a new job if she gets fired.

Why not? Shouldn't people face consequences for really bad behavior that affects children in their care?

Anonymous said...

You should leave a videotape running in the house where she hangs out cursing and iming. then return under the guise of bringing the bitch a latte or something. collect the tape and put the video sand children's faces on youtube under the heading IS THIS THE SORT OF NANNY YOU WANT WATCHING YOUR CHILDREN?

It's your responsibility to do something big. Do it now. Act big. Love large.

cali mom said...

1:02 even if all 3 of your imaginary scenarios were true (which I doubt any of them are) the nanny is still a crappy slug and needs to be fired ASAP.

OP, I'd see if I could make the email method work.

Anonymous said...

OP: I suggest you take at least a day to think about whether you want to maintain a friendship with this rotten human being.
If you do, stay out of it and let it go. Allow her to do her horrible nannying and pretend it doesn't bother you. This is the only way you can ever keep a friendship with her...by being as insensitive and self-serving as she is.
Now, once you've (hopefully!) come to your senses and decided you don't need this sort of person in your life, use the email idea or discuss what you've witnessed directly with the parents.
Let them know you're no longer friends with their nanny because of her lack of character and tell them you're concerned with the well-being of their children.
Then live the rest of your life with a clear conscience...you just did the RIGHT thing!

marypoppin'pills said...

11:08/12:19
I did suggest she tell the Mom about the Nannies behavior. I didn't say "just drop in":


"Hopefully with what you've told the Mom, and her coming home and catching the Nanny, your friend won't know it was you."
~ mpp/10:20

I thought my post was pretty clear.

marypoppin'pills said...

"If OP describes what is going on then Mom will better know what to look for and be aware that it could be covered up."
~ 12:19


.... and I agree %100.

We are on the same page. There was obviously a misunderstanding.

Anonymous said...

As a nanny, some things are no-brainers:
If the kids are hungry/thirsty, FEED THEM/GIVE THEM SOMETHING TO DRINK!
If it's nice outside, GO TO THE PARK!!!!
I'm not saying I don't send a text message here or there, but when the kids are awake, they are the priority. And mom and I can use whatever language we like when discussing our day or our lame husbands, but NEVER do either of us talk that way in front of the kids.

just anonymous said...

Even if you decide to do nothing, I bet these parents will start to figure it out soon enough. The kids are old enough that they will start repeating the language they hear. They're also old enough to tell their parents about their day (ie. not going outside to play). You could speed up the process. A few years ago I had a friend that was a nanny that was drinking on the job. I ended my friendship and put the kids first and told her bosses about it. Your 'friend' doesn't sound like all that great of a person, so I wouldn't feel bad about ratting her out. It sounds to me like she needs a good slap in the face.

OP here said...

1:02am: Yes I am a nanny, no she did not and no I do not. Crazy.
Thanks for all of your advice. I spoke to my boss about it yesterday at length and we both agreed that it was not fair to the family if she stays there. She's not a slug or really a rotten person or else I would not be friends with her. Our work ethics are just different, way different. I had never seen her in a work environment before and really had no idea that she was like that. It could just be this particular family who knows.
This morning I called the mom as I knew my (ex?)friend was coming in late. I explained to her who I was and what I observed and asked her if at all possible to keep me out of it after this point. I told her the kids were not in danger at all just that she was not doing the job I'm sure they expect of her.
She was upset of course and said she would speak to her husband this morning and they would decide what to do.
I'm sure if she gives the nanny any details she will know it was me who told the mom, but what can I do? I believe I was morally correct in reporting this to the mother. I haven't heard anything yet but I'm pretty sure she will be fired. The mom did not come right out and say it but she told me the 4 year old did tell them that "nanny" was on the phone and would not do puzzles with him, and then was on the computer and would not let him play games on it. We shall see how it all unfolds.

marypoppin'pills said...

Well, let's hope the Mom keeps you out of it. Why should you have more aggravation on your plate? You were doing her a favor by looking out for her kids.

The things her 4 y.o. reported to her should be enough for the Mom to confront your friend with ... and let her go.

I know how you feel about not wanting to lose your friend, though. I have one of those, too ... I love her to death and she's good to me, but everything about her is morally and ethically corrupt.

Anonymous said...

who cares, it is not your place to do anything. what if she went to your boss and told him something that could lose your job. Let the parents find out. She's not using language that any other kid hasn't heard before.

Anonymous said...

10:27 I can't really even believe you would say that. They are 4 and 2.5! Of course they have not heard those words. Good grief what kind of parents/care giver would let kids hear that! You're a nanny??? Let's hope not.

undercover regular said...

I can't believe 10:27 said that, either.

Their young little ears should never be subjected to a barrage of f-bombs!

TX nanny said...

OP thanks for the update, you did the right thing.

andrea said...

OP,
Of course you did the right thing. I really wish you would have let your friend have it in person (not while the children were around) and told her straight out that you lost complete respect for her and could no longer associate with someone of such questionable standard.

Anonymous said...

I have not yet read the other responses, so forgive me if I am repeating what anyone has already said.
Why would you want to be friends with a person who treats the children in her care so badly?
Please don't worry about betraying a friend: she is no friend, and sounds like not a very nice person.
Tell the parents what you have seen, or at the very least tell her she is negligent, and then cut off contact with her.
She sounds awful!

Anonymous said...

10:27 is probably the nanny in question...

mom said...

OP Good for you.
I was wondering the same thing many have said here. How much value can you really place on a friendship where you are unable to fully respect the other person because she lacks morals and common decency?
She sounds more than lazy. She sounds like one of those people who take advantage wherever they can. I don't care for those much. And how nice is she to you really? She invited you over to visit (while she was supposed to be working, mind you) and then, instead of visiting with you, she sits and IM's on the computer with her boyfriend while you sit and wait for her? Classy.

And here's a lesson I've learned the hard way. (It's for you too MPP.)When you have a friend who is morally bankrupt, but you somehow think they are going to be different towards you....you will eventually be very unhappily surprised. They may seem to value you more than the others they take advantage of...and they may actually hold you in greater regard than most...but when the chips are down you can bet that even you are not immune from their ugly ways. If a person is morally bankrupt they're marally bankrupt, period, and nobody is immune from their ugliness in the long run.

mpp said...

I don't know, Mom. I've known her my whole life. I'm sure if she was going to screw me over, she would've by now.
She's knows I'll kick her butt, so she doesn't mess with me.
All I can do is nag her about the way she treats other people, I can't change her.
She's gotta want that herself.

Anonymous said...

Wow, that nanny is a moron.

Maybe you should put a letter in the parents' mailbox that tells (anonymously) the parents what the nanny really does. Then they can fire her, or, if they want proof, put a Nannycam in their house to catch her in the act.

Good luck and thanks for your concern!

Jen said...

First of all, I want to say that this is just one of the many reasons I believe nanny cameras are a good thing! (Yes - I am a nanny). When nanny cams are used and disclosed up front, it keeps the nanny from behaving foolishly or abusively.

OP - why do you care if this nanny gets upset with you? Are you truly interested in an ongoing relationship with her or are you concerned about retribution?

In theses circumstances, you must decide what is right, true, and just.

There is no question that this nanny is a poor influence on the children in her care. There is also no question that the parents must be notified about what is happening while they are away.

The bottom line is that you must take the road that is in the best interest of the children, regardless as to how uncomfortable it makes you feel.

You have the opportunity to make the daily lives of these children better. How can you pass up an opportunity like that?

And don't feel guilty about the nanny losing her job. That is just her chickens coming home to roost.

mpp said...

Jen
I really like your posts, you give the subject incredible insight.