Drunken Husband makes advances toward Nanny

Received Friday, August 1, 2008. - Perspective & Opinion
I am in a bit of an uncomfortable situation. I am a live in nanny for a nice family with a 1 year old son. I work full-time and often they will go out. The mother is a medical resident so she works overnights a lot and the father works crazy hours as well. The other night I was babysitting and he came home at about 1130pm. The baby was asleep, of course, and I was watching some tv about to go to bed. He comes in EXTREMELY drunk. We are around the same age and I don't look down on him for drinking as I enjoy a nice cocktail once in awhile myself! Anyway he sat down next to me and we started chatting and all of a sudden he tried to kiss me. He told me he is so attracted to me, he feels neglected by his wife and basically he wont tell her what happens between us. I tell him hes drunk and to go to bed.
I go into my room and lock the door and go to sleep. He stays up for awhile but eventually goes to bed.

The next morning he just said hello and that was it. We havent said anything more to each other. I really dont know what to do. I really like these people and I adore their son. I know that if this were my hubby I would want to know that he tried to cheat on me. But at the same time no good can come out of telling her. I feel so uncomfortable and am thinking that I have to quit.
Any suggestions, advice?


UmassSlytherin said...

Dude, this guy is not nice. So if you think it's a nice family, you're wrong. The mother and child may be nice, but a "nice" guy does not hit on the nanny behind his wife's back. I know that may sound a bit harsh, but what he did was wrong, not just to his wife and child, but to you because now look at the uncomfortable situation he has put you in.

I know nobody is perfect, but I remeber some advice I got long ago: "What is said when drunk has been thought out beforehand." Some have disagreed with this statement, but I believe it's true.

I feel for you because I can tell you value this job. Only you can make that decision. You can chalk it up to a dumb mistake on his part if you desire, but if I were you I would leave at the slightest bit of backsliding or repeat of this behavior. Sorry this happened to you, and good luck.

Marissa M. said...

Quit before he tries to fire you. And then they'll think your lying if you tell the truth. Fact is, you shouldve given notice the next morning. No I'm sorry, that's what I would of had done. I don't have the right to judge as I have never been in such a situation. He's an unstable man. I would leave before something worse happens.
Good luck and I hope all gets better for you!

UmassSlytherin said...

Marissa makes a good point, OP: if this were to ever come back to you, now you share in the responsibility for not doing anything about it. I would not want to work for a man like that. Unless he was...ok, forget it. (Gonna try to be good, mpp and jane!)

What Marissa said.

hmmm said...

I don't know if I would quit. If it is a good job, and this is the first time it has EVER happened, like even a hint...

I stopped drinking because I made too many drunken mistakes. You know what, he may really find you attractive, if you are attractive you'll probably find it hard to find a DB that doesn't think you are attractive... NOW acting on that attraction is a different story, but since he was drunk he could have only been acting on the fact that he thinks you are attractive, not really that he wants to cheat on his wife with you. My guess is that he regretted it the next morning.

Put him on "probation", if he does anything at all in the same catagory again, give your notice.

Don't tell MB.

Casey said...

I agree with Umass that what people do when they are drunk is something they want to do when they are sober. However, if it has only happened once, when he was incredibly drunk, he is most likely able to control his interest in you.

I disagree that you should quit. If it happens again, then I would definetely, but I think everyone should be given 1 free pass on a mistake.

I would limit any interaction with him and if you are babysitting late, try to stay in your room with the baby monitor so you won't have to deal with him. This is in no way your fault, so I don't think you should have to quit. However, if you are incredibly uncomfortable and don't think you can be happy working there, you should quit.

UmassSlytherin said...

I appreciate your point of view, but I have to disagree with you here: you wrote:

"since he was drunk he could have only been acting on the fact that he thinks you are attractive, not really that he wants to cheat on his wife with you."

Isn't ACTING on the fact that he thinks she is attractive...erm...attempting to cheat on his wife? Call it whatever you want, it's still cheating, whatever the motivation. Being drunk does not make it a lesser offense. He WANTED to hit on her and he DID it.

I think I would quit.

To Casey: of course it's not her fault, but sometimes in life shi* happens and we get the short end of the stick. It's not your fault if you are sexually harrassed, but when this happens to women it never bodes well for them: they always end up suffering, even though it's not their fault. Yeah, that would be unfair if she had to quit.

But I still would.

Casey said...


It is easy to tell someone to quit but some people live paycheck to paycheck and a lull in employment can mean disaster. Also, since she is live in, it would be quite a chore to find a new place to live, in addition to another job.

People put up with gross bosses all the time. I had a boss who got incredibly drunk and the xmas party and when I took his keys and drove him home, he licked my ear when we were saying goodbye. I was just the receptionist and he was a managing partner. Nothing came of it and I ignored him as much as possible. Quitting a good paying job with benefits is not easy, so I think we should be more open-minded.

UmassSlytherin said...

I am an extremely open-minded person. I just draw the line at sexual harrassment. If we, as women are willing to put up with our superiors licking our ears and trying to kiss us, what does that say for us?

This OP is playing with fire if she stays. If I were her, I would give my notice. Money isn't everything. No, it is not easy to quit a good-paying job with benefits. It's also not easy to stand up for who we are and what we believe in, but some of us do it. I would work at HoneyDew Donuts (which I have done before) rather than be harrassed by a drunken employer, especially when there is a mother and child involved.

does this moniker make my butt look big said...

Casey, There is a BIG difference between a boss at the office and living in the same home as your boss. I do find your points valid .

Casey said...


What do you expect her to do for a home? If anything, she should look for a new job while keeping her current job until she gets another one lined up. Money isn't everything, of course, but you can't survive on optimism. Who knows, maybe the OP has savings and is in a good place financially... if that is the case, then I would high tail it out of there. I just wanted to point out that everyone's situation is different and it is easy as commenters to say "QUIT!".

Since she lives with him, of course it is different. That is why I said if it happens again, then she should definetely leave. I don't think 1 drunken mistake should make her leave if it doesn't happen again. It also gets tricky involving the wife or giving her notice. She can't really say what happened but she still needs a good reference. It is just a bad situation and I feel for the OP.

does this moniker make my butt look big said...

I think she start looking for a new Live In position asap. She should find an agency that can place her and give notice only after securing a job. Under the circumstances, very little notice is acceptable.
I do not feel leaving today to make a point(albeit a valid one) will be beneficial to the OP.However acting as quickly as possible is.
The situation is now a bit uncomfortable and most likely always will be.

Your relationship has been compromised..and that will always be there.Dad sexually harrassed you and that will always be there.

Tell mom?? That is up to the op.

As a wife and mommy, I would want to know.

UmassSlytherin said...

casey I am not suggesting that she attempt to "live on optimism," I am merely suggesting that she quits her job. Of course she should start looking for another job. I don't think she should sleep on a park bench. If she has no family in the whole wide world, then she better start looking for an apartment asap. It is assumed that OP is an adult. A grown-up. She needs to take care of her situation. A person who backs themselves into a corner does have a difficult time when things like this occur. Regardless of how, or within what time frame OP does it, I suggest that she leave.

As far as getting a good reference, I wish her luck with that. As I said before, this guy sucks: he has put her in a horrible position. She must either live in an uncomfortable atmosphere, or find an excuse to leave, or tell the truth to the wife, and good luck getting that reference then. The situation sucks. Or, she could just pretend it doesn't matter and stay. But OP seems bothered by this and has expressed a desire to leave. Sounds like OP is smart.

I hope she takes steps to leave. No, one cannot survive on optimism. But if one is not a freaking idiot, one can survive without living in a home in which they have been sexually harrassed.

UmassSlytherin said...

and of course I agree with blb: start looking, don't just leave. the mother deserves at least two weeks notice.

does this moniker make my butt look big said...

casey,why can't Op "say what happened although she still needs a good reference? Could you elaborate plpease?

Casey said...


If she says what happened, the wife might freak out and accuse her of lying, then refuse to give her a good reference. Also, is she leaves unexpectedly, she could refuse to give a good reference to the OP as well. A tough situation all around.

does this moniker make my butt look big said...

Thanks Casey.

UmassSlytherin said...

I think if OP is frank with the mom and says "Your husband tried to make out with me and stuff, and I just don't want to stay because I feel that's a deal-breaker," I doubt the mom will disbelieve her unless the mom is a real wack-job. The nanny is saying she is leaving, so I would assume the mom would know she meant business.

But I don't know. I wish OP good luck whatever she decides to do.

minneapolis nanny said...

keep your mouth shut, nanny. let it go.

macaroniandcheese said...

don't be silly. do not tell the wife.

i probably wouldn't leave if it's a one time thing. this man finds you attractive and that's completely normal even when you're in a relationship. people do silly things when they're drunk but make sure it doesn't happen again.

UmassSlytherin said...

I don't think it would be silly to tell the wife, necessarily. And yes, it is normal to find someone attractive. But this is a man who does not know boundaries. He sounds sleezy. Do you think the wife would shrug this off as a "silly thing?" If I were the wife, I would want the nanny to tell me.

I am just curious: to the posters who are advising the nanny to do nothing and shrug it off (a point of view that I respect, although I disagree with it) are you married? would you want to know?

Answering UMASS said...

Umass, I didn't respond to any of those but I am married and pondered your question. If this was a one time I am drunk and stupid and will never do it again mistake I would most certainly NOT want to know because I would have a hard time believing it was the one time drunk and stupid event and would forever have trust issues. I wouldn't want my marriage ruined over the kiss that never happened.

However, if he was really a sleaze trying to take advantage of the nanny and probably getting it on with others on the side then yes I would want to know so I could end it and move on.

UmassSlytherin said...

I appreciate your point of view. But see, the thing is, you wouldn't know if it was one or the other. OF COURSE the husband would say it was a "one-time thing." I think, to me, these actions speak for themselves. I know in my own marriage, I would never attempt to kiss anyone (disregarding what I was saying on my own blog this morning about Joey McIntyre and the rest of the New Kids) and I know that if I did, it would mean that my marriage was not strong. Likewise for my husband.

If you find out that your husband was trying to kiss the nanny, I say that you should damn straight have trust issues in this relationship! But again, that's just me. I can see where you are coming from.

bebe said...

You MIGHT know if it was one or the other if you knew your spouse well enough. How do I know? Because I put him to the test.

We all went drinking one night. My best friend needed a ride home and I asked my husband to take her. We had planned on doing this all evening.
He took her home, while I stayed several car lengths back and followed.
I really wanted to know if he could resist my beautiful girlfriend.
As they went inside, I crept around to the back bedroom window.
She went in the bathroom, and he sat on the edge of her bed.
She came out in a nightie and sat down next to him. He couldn't take his eyes off of her. I was starting to feel jealous... but I asked for this, and I wanted to know. She leaned over to kiss him and he leaned in just slightly, then pulled back!! He didn't kiss her. I was actually surprised, I thought he would.
Anyway, I couldn't hear what was said, but they spoke for a second, then he left.
She was supposed to call me later... but I quickly left for home to meet him.
He never said a word about it. That bothered me a little... "Hey, your friend made a pass at me!"... anyway, she and I fessed up to him 2 days later. He laughed, and said something like, "I knew it was a set-up"... yeah, right, lol.
Anyway, I'm kind of sorry I did it. I don't think I'd want to know if it was something like this... but yes, I would want to know if it was something that had gone further.

does this moniker make my butt look big said...

bebe, why on earth would your husband go in and sit on the edge of her bed after giving her a ride home?That seems very odd to me.Not saying it did not just seems reallly odd. I would think he would make sure she got inside, wait for her to lock the door and then jam?

BTW, If I found out my husband ever did what you and your girlfriend did,, I would not only be furious but very hurt that my husband had doubts about us and the strength of our marriage and took it up with a friend instead of me.

When I worked for the airlines I too, had a girlfriend who asked me to call her husband ( we all worked at the ticket counter together for a short time, he at a different airport)and act like I had met him while I was flying out somewhere. She asked me to flirt and then ask to meet for dinner. I was appalled and refused. I just do not understand such games between grown ups.
This woman also confessed to going through her husbands wallet and drawers.
Resorting to any of those things says so much about a woman..not only is she insecure but disrespectful of her husband and the relationship. Of course, this is just my opinion.

However,I am glad it worked for you, that your husband had a good sense of humor about it and that your fear was put to rest.

As for the op, I still think she should jam asap after finding a new job. I also, as a mommy and a wife, would want to know if my husband tried to put moves on my nanny.

bebe said...

Does this moniker...
We had it planned. She would lure him into the bedroom. I think he was more nervous than anything. At least he looked nervous, lol. This was soooo long ago at the beginning of our marriage. I did have insecurities, you're right. I wanted to know he loved me and I wanted to know if I could trust him. I never said it wasn't a stupid move on my part, lol. I was young and dumb.
But as it turns out, I got lucky. He's a great guy. :) And I felt bad, which is why I fessed up about it.

UmassSlytherin said...

I am so dying to go off topic now! Those umassflamers had a point!!! (MUST...NOT...DISCUSS...

But, in all seriousness, I have to agree with blb. I think that whole story is really weird, bebe! but I am glad it worked out for you! :)

does this moniker make my butt look big said...

bebe,gotcha..glad it worked out for you.

bebe said...

Why is it so weird? I'm quite sure I'm not the only person to ever test their husbands fidelity, come on! Besides, not to make excuses, but I was practically a kid when it happened. Who's ever really "fully cooked" at 19 anyway, lol. Did you never do anything to check up on your husband? Like call his work, or follow him late one night, or go through his wallet or check the caller I.D. on his phone? (Not that I would ever do any of these things, lol... at least not now).

UmassSlytherin said...

lol, sorry bebe, I didn't mean weird in a bad way. and look who's freaking talking, me!! haha! and no, I've never done any of that.
we lead dull lives! :)

UmassSlytherin said...

(by we I mean me and my hubby!) :)

macaroniandcheese said...


i would want to know if my husband cheated on me but it is NOT smart of the nanny to tell the wife.

References references references! Don't ever forget that and never dig your own grave.

UmassSlytherin said...

yes, macaroni, I know.

My references are excellent. stellar. I always get the reference before I tell the wife that their husband tried to make out with me.

does this moniker make my butt look big said... know, I know the guy did not go through with it and I am a firm beleiver that you do not arrest someone until they have actually gone through with the crime, however, are you actually advising this woman not to tell her female employer about her potentially, cheating husband just so that she can get a reference?

Look, nothing happened because the op stopped it from happening..not because dad all of a sudden came to his senses and did the right thing.

As a mommy, nanny and a wife, I can say that I truly hope women have more respect than that for each other in this world.

op ,someday when you are married I am guessing, you would want to know if your husband ever made moves on your sitter, nanny, sister or BF..I find it hard to beliieve that any wife serious about her marriage would not want to know.

The op secured this job with whatever references she already had, I am sure it would be no problem to use those same references for any future job.

Best of luck op

UmassSlytherin said...

great post, blb! we all need to support one another. girl power!!!

gladit'sfriday said...

OP I think if you're not comfortable don't stay on. Your happiness and comfort are really what matters. Think about your own feelings here. Also as some pointed out, it may take you a bit of time to find another live-in situation which is not always easy. We don't know your financial situation so honestly we can't really know if you're able to leave now or have to wait until you find a job. If you are financially able to leave now and stay with someone until you find another job then do so. It was wrong of him to put you in this position and I would definitely talk with him about it when you two are alone. Tell him how it made you feel and as you love the baby and like he and his wife you do not feel right about staying. It sounds to me that alcohol gave him the balls to tell you how he feels and that he truly is attracted to you and just hides it normally.
I'm sorry this happen to you, I can understand how hard it must be and what a huge decision you have to make. Just always do what's best for you. You have to look out for yourself first and foremost. Good luck.

Litigate said...

Three Words: Hostile Work Environment. Talk a lawyer. This was sexual harrasment at the most basic level. You should be paid for his inappropriate behavior, drunk or not.

Cheater's Hotel said...

Because of the fact that you feel so uncomfortable, I think it is unhealthy. These feelings will stay inside you and are unhealthy mentally and physically.

This family is broken and needs to heal. It is not a healthy place for you, and you will not be able to be the best nanny you can be anyway. The anxiety and negative energy in the house will hurt you and have an effect on you each day. Whether the mom find out or not, it is not the place for you to be.

You don't have to feel obligated to tell her what happened unless you really feel a voice in your heart screaming for you to tell her. The truth is, if he tried to kiss you he is a cheater. Cheaters eventually cheat again, and almost always get caught. The events will unfold naturally and will be between the two.

If you do feel compelled to tell her, you can always write her a letter after you have found a new job.