Is the Dad Being "Creepy" or is it just "Magic"?

Received Monday, July 27, 2009
Perspective and Opinion on ISYN I have a question I am hesitant about posing. The post about the Mom and the bras made me curious what people would say about my situation. First, some background. I have been with the family 14 months. I make an above average salary and I am 6 months pg with my first child and the family is going to pay me for 10 weeks of maternity leave. The children are sweet and everyone has always gotten along great. My pregnancy has brought out a bad side in the Dad. This is especially bad because the parents adopted their children because the mom was not able to carry a baby. First he showered me with attention and compliments. It made me a little uneasy. Not bad. Then he started telling me he never realized how beautiful I was which turned in to "Maybe I just think pregnant women are sexy". Then he has encouraged me to have pregnancy pictures of myself taken, nude for my husband but the way he went on about how I was denying my husband a due pleasure if I didn't do this was kind of creepy. I half saw it as sexual, then maybe realized he was just alluding to the magic of it. He has asked me specifically if I knew my breasts were going to grow so large and asked me what size I was now and what size I was then. I told him, "X, that makes me uncomfortable" and walked away. When I allude that I am uncomfortable, he says things like, "this is a beautiful stage of life, this is as God has designed".

I am afraid to say anything to the Mom because I fear if he is focusing on the magic part it will just hurt her feelings. I can definitely say he seems to put me on a pedestal right now. (I am happily married and he has met my husband and even golfed with him twice). So am I just being a sensitive pregnant person? Maybe I am more modest than other people? Outside of him, I don't like people touching my stomach - outside of my husband. So is it me? Can you give me practical advice? Because they are giving me ten weeks maternity leave, this is not a boat I care to rock. Grin and bear it?


fox in socks said...

Wow, that sounds kind of gross. However, it is up to you if you can or wish to grin and bear it. It depends how much time you have there. It would be great if he would act weird like that in front of the mom so you wouldn't have to tell the mom yourself. Surely it would hurt her feelings to know he is being flirty and also inappropriate with you (or anyone for that matter), but if things get bad you will probably have to tell her. This is a tough situation.

Perhaps you can be very frank and confrontational with him the next time he makes even a slightly provocative remark. Have a little speech prepared and stick it to him. Say, X, you are being totally inappropriate by saying this and all the other comments lately. Knock it off. Do not let it happen again, not even once. I will not accept this kind of treatment and sexual innuendo from you. Save it for your wife. Be very firm and strong and clear.

Let's hope that if you respond very strongly and firmly that he will get the message and keep his thoughts to himself.

chgonanny said...


Sadly, I don't have much advice for you. I honestly don't know. But if my employer said that stuff to me, I'd be skeeved out. You (unlike the post about the mom and the bras) have every reason to be weirded out.

How much longer 'til your maternity leave? If it's a matter of a few weeks, I'd hold out and say what Fox said.

Either way, congrats and good luck.

TC said...

Too many times women ignore that feeling in the pit of their stomach, and it sounds like you've done that. You know it's wrong because if you thought it was ok you never would have questioned it and never would have asked for advice here.

If you and the father worked in an office together and he asked you what size bra you wear would you even hesitate to call that sexual harassment? No because that's exactly what it is.

Now it's up to you if you can handle this until you give birth, you have 3 months left. Do you think you can put up with his comments until then? If not then it's not worth the 10 weeks maternity.

The only other option is to confront him. Tell him his comments uncomfortable and they must stop immediately or you will have to talk to his wife and quit.

CuriousDad said...

I Like what TC said.
Sounds like he is projecting his disappointment of not having children of his own blood on you. He never had the "magic" of the whole pregnancy to go through. You have become his access to that magical world of having children. Is it possibly creepy? Of course, but you have two choices either except it and try and set ground rules or get the heck out of dodge. His wife probably sees it and has not acted on it because she may feel like a failure or because she also is projecting on too you in an albeit different manner. As long as you can keep him at arms length you should be ok. Oh, and you should look up the whole “nude” photograph thing (ON YOUR OWN or with your husband, not with him) it may not be as truly “nude” as much as you think it is.
I so remember my wife’s magic moments, though I have never had to suffer it directly, just support my wife when they happen. The back pain, the leg pain, the swelling of everything and now I cannot touch because they are so sore, the crying because you just started crying, the baby banging away on your last nerve (The Sciatic). The need to pee every five seconds. Yep its beautiful to someone who has not had to carry his wife up four flights of stairs, hold her in his arms while she is crying. Her need to be constantly touched and constant approval from him, the sudden fear of getting fat, even though you tell her she is beautiful and pregnant, so she should not worry. The inability to hold food down, the sudden cravings for an everything bagel, with peanut butter and lox. I am sorry dear you cannot have lox. Ouch that’s my arm, that’s my arm, no you may not have lox, ouch, ouch, my arm, my arm, I love you dear but the doctor said you can’t have any lox. Here we go with the crying, let me put my arms around you. Yes dear I will get you Lox with the bagel and peanut butter. And you want candied ginger for the nausea? Yes dear. Damn everything is closed and the only place with bagels still open does not have lox. Lucky me.

Marypoppin'pills said...

Curious Dad
Would your Wife happen to be pregnant right now? You seem to be reliving something that has either been too traumatic to forget (kidding!)... or it is very recent!

CuriousDad said...

Good guess at reading between the lines Mary. We are on our second. Though the Lox, peanut butter, candied ginger and bagel story is not exactly true it is very much stretched out to a breaking point (She has never intentionally hurt me) and is a combination of things from our first. ;)

Marypoppin'pills said...

Curious Dad
Your Wife is very lucky then if she has a Husband willing to travel into the dark of night for those outrageous cravings! Kudos to you!

Dr. Know said...

I think your gut feeling is right but if you can tolerate it, and there has been no overt sexual or improper advance you should just ignore him and enjoy your maternity leave. When you return, he should be back to normal. If he's not, you will need to face the issue then.

Anonymous said...
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lawyermama said...

You are NOT being over-sensitive. It is WRONG for ANYONE, man or woman, to comment on another person's body. It is considered socially acceptable (although often not happily) for people to comment on pregnant women's bodies, but you are NOT over-reacting.

I would change your response though from "This is making me uncomfortable" to "What you are saying is completely inappropriate. You must stop talking to me about my body."

I understand that this is your job and you may have strong attachments to the family, but you also have a case here if you want.

need a moniker said...

You do not need a Password... click NAME/URL and pick a Moniker.

Anonymous said...

Please accept this post. I can't get my password right.

What are your own childcare plans?
Are you planning to bring your baby with you to this workplace?

Jul 28, 2009 1:24:00 AM

Ella said...

If you really need the money, yes grin and bear it. But for him to ask your breast size seems like sexual harassment. If a male asked me that, I would feel very uncomfortable around him.
Do not be alone w/him. I see where you are on this. On one hand, I would want to just leave and report this pervert, but on the other hand since you are having a baby soon, you probably need the cash now too. It's a tough call.
If it were me, I would keep the job but ignore the father. I would not tell the mom and I would NEVER be alone w/the husband since he is such a creep.
And no this doesn't sound like magic to me.

MinuteMuggle said...

I call creepy. I would bail.

world's best nanny said...

Why do you get real graphic and talk about your morning sickness with him? Or your heartburn, or running to the bathroom every 5 seconds! I know I turned green and felt ill if I smelled coffee! It's not what it is all cracked up to be. BTW are you the only pregnant woman he has ever been around?? You might think so! If this was any other kind of job he would find himself in a world of trouble. If worse comes to worse tell the wife, your husband and be prepared to leave.

Only Dad Here said...

I agree with Curious Dad. I can't imagine what it would feel like to find out my wife was unable to have children. Your pregnancy is probably messing with his mind (and good sense) and he's saying to you the things he would have said to his wife if she were pregnant. He's walking a thin line though. If his wife picks up on it she may chop off his balls for making her feel inadequate and jealous.

Anonymous said...
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mom said...

There is no question that this is inappropriate.
Does he do it in front of his wife? Has he asked you your breast size, touched your stomach, talked about nude pregnancy photos (while no doubt picturing them in his mind as he speaks), or told you how sexy you are in front of her? I doubt it. Why? because he is being purposely sexual with you. He knows it's 100% wrong, so he doesn't do it in front of her. Duh.

And don't let him touch your stomach, ever!

What does your husband say about all of these things? I am surprised he hasn't "stopped by" to "have a chat" with the dad, and his wife, yet. You have told him, right? Everything? If not, it may also mean that you, consciously, or unconsciously, like the attention and don't actually want it to end. Did you actually mean that you don't like anybody besides your male employer and your husband touching your belly? (That's how your post read to me.)If that is the case, you need to quit ASAP because you are participating in a dangerous little game, Missy. One that could go irreparably wrong at any given moment.

If I read your post wrong, and you do not enjoy (or allow)the dad touching your stomach, and if you have told your husband everything and he is OK with it, I would not quit your job. I would simply ignore him when possible, try to never be alone with him, and tell him dierctly that he is out of line whenever necessary.

And again, what's with all of these families making the really dangerous and stipid decision to have the husbands spending time alone in the house with young women on what sounds to be a repeated basis?!! Matches to dynamite.

mom said...

PS Anonymous, you're a bit harsh.

This sexual harrassment mania has gone too far, IMO. What happened to women being able to ignore the occasional stupid comment without melting, or being able to say, "That's gross," and walk away...thereby giving the message that they are not interested directly to the perv themselves without having to send Gaston to the rescue?

I think true sexual harassment is definitely worth prosecuting...but men just say stupid stuff sometimes...always have, always will...and we don't need to run to a lawyer or punch their lights out every single time. Let's use some discretion as to what is simply offensive and what constitutes actual harassment.

Momkat said...

Every time he brings up an inappropriate comment, ask him a job related question. Preferably one that's going to require action, or thinking on his part. I promise, he'll start leaving you alone.

Momkat said...

Also...he can't touch your stomach, period. That's just not appropriate. You're giving him permission to cross the line.

Tales from the (Nanny)Hood said...

If 10 weeks maternity leave is worth being sexually harrassed, then I think you should just let it go. But if not...

I think you need to face the fact that you will eventually be fired. MB will overhear and be pissed, DB will eventually want a better high than your reactions are giving him, one of the kids will say something if they are old enough to communicate to mom, etc.

You do have options. First, find an employment lawyer. You have a heck of a lawsuit on your hands, I would guess. BUT you need to document EVERYTHING the sleeze says to you from now on. Date, time, what was said, how you responded.

If a lawyer is absolutely out of the question, perhaps you could hang on to your job a little longer if you sit down for a frank discussion with sleezo. Does your husband know what your sleezy DB is saying to you? If so, and if he can manage to stay cool in a discussion, maybe you AND he should ask to meet DB for a frank talk.

The real truth said...

In a way, you're inviting all of this "unwanted" attention. Maybe you're subconsciously enjoying it. Be honest with come you're letting him touch your stomach? Why are you listening to his unwanted comments.

If you truly wanted to ensure that he wouldn't cross the line, you need to make sure you're not crossing the line yourself. Me thinks you're enjoying the inappropriate attention, on some level.

As long as you're ambivalent, even subconsciously, this man is going to think he can continue to say these things to you.

Momkat is right. Change the subject to something job related...stop letting him touch your stomach...and stop engaging in any of these conversations with him. If you're fired because of it, which I suspect won't happen, so be it. You're playing a dangerous game!

Anonymo said...

This would totally creep me out.

I thought that OP was saying that outside of her husband, she didn't like anyone to touch her stomach. I think she just wrote the sentence in a weird way.

If she hasn't told her husband, maybe it's because she knows he would overreact and she doesn't want to lose her job when he flips out on the male employer. Maybe she wants to try to stop the sexual harassment on her own without getting her husband worked up about it.

I personally would tell my husband in this situation though, because he isn't the type to overreact about something that might not be such a big deal...

MinuteMuggle said...

pregnant women let people touch their bellies all the time. I do not believe that OP is inviting this attention nor is she enjoying it.

NannyJ said...

I personally think he seems to have crossed the line a few times...but other than that... I think it seems pretty harmless (unless you are feeling harmed, that is!).
It may just be me... but I think the fact that he wasn't able to biologically father children (but obviously wanted to!) makes it all a bit more forgiveable. Especially if he was fine and appropriate before your pregnancy. He may not be dealing with it too well...but he probably has that fatherhood "gene" in him that really rears it's head when there is a pregnant woman in his presence daily.

Tell him it makes you uncomfortable. I wouldn't quit. Then again...I have been known to let inappropriate comments slide off my back... and have regretted it. Do what you feel is right. If you love your job, and feel like it will get better once you have returned from your leave, then try not to sweat it. If it is unbearable...get out of there.

Can't hurt to look into some jobs during your leave, either. Do you have a contract?

mom said...

Only once did my husband see a man touch my pregnant belly. (I don't recall any other men ever doing it, and I didn't think my pregnancies gave strangers any right to touch me...of either sex.)It was a colleague of his at a going away party (that guy's), and it was the first thing he mentioned when we got into the car to go home that night.

The weird thing is, it was a guy who was in the habit of saying weird things to me...just under the line of where I could say anything about it, but definitley let me know he was interested...but again, in a way that if I had said anything about his being "inappropriate," I would have had no credible ammo to report. My husband was aware of all that..and even saw the man break into tears when he said he would be sad to not be seeing me anymore (which was unbelievably weird because I only saw the guy once in a blue moon at company functions anyway...and barely talked ot him then)...but it was the belly touching that got my husband mad, while he let all the rest slide.

OP, you do need to let your husband know what is going on. He's going to wonder why you hid it if he finds out. And don't you want his opinion about how to proceed more than you want ours...a bunch of strangers on the web?

mom said...

But Nanny J,
I dad is feeling the loss of not being able to experience a pregnancy, just think of how his wife feels...and how horribly sad and hurt she would be to know that, not only could she not have a child for her husband, but that he is lusting after another woman BECAUSE of her ability to carry a child?

Tales from the (Nanny)Hood said...

Ok, if DB is indeed projecting his disappointment about not having children genetically related to him, he is still way way out of line.

You are not his therapist. If you are unwilling to consider quitting/suing, then at the very least you need to do as previous posters suggest and set some RIGID boundaries. Your body is off limits, whether he is discussing it, touching it, or leering at it.

Anonymous said...
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sed said...

Hell yeah grin and bear it!! He is for sure a creeper - it is NOT JUST YOU!! However to get 10 weeks maternity leave from a nanny job is amazing and great. I am 7 months pregnant and will be getting zero maternity leave.

Don't rock the boat, deal with it but continue to walk away when he says something. When you get back from your leave, if he continues to be a creeper, then you can start looking for another job - but don't pass up this 10 weeks of paid leave!! You are lucky!

OP said...

I think you are right. I am lucky to be getting 10 weeks maternity leave and the uncomfortable feelings are always short lived and then he is on his way. I think I will grin and bare it.

mom said...

OP, I seriously hope that was not a Freudian slip, and that you, instead, intend to "bear" it! (hehehehe)

WTF? said...

Oh honey, he's not in to the "magic" of it all. He's perving on you and, yes, it's completely wrong and inappropriate.

twinkiesmom said...

As another infertile adoptive mom, this husband makes me ill.

I think every time he says something about your pregnancy, you should remind him about the miracle of adoption and how he should be making his wife feel special and appreciated having a very pregnant nanny underfoot (which could be painful IMHO as adoption doesn't cure infertility).

He is confused and needs to recommit to his own family rather than experimenting in this way with leaving his family for a fertile woman. I don't think you're necessarily the object of his affections...I think he's toying with the idea.

MNanny said...

There is nothing more classless, rude, obnoxious or childish than a grown woman using "duh" in speech or type.

Psyber Chica said...


Oh please! You think you are so classy to come on here and insult someone anonymously?

"Mom" is well spoken and not only seems like a classy woman, but also a really cool mom (I don't know her, I'm just judging by what she types here).

Get the stick out of your arse...DUH!

mom said...

Hmmm...I take it that was aimed at me then. Thanks Cyber Chica.

Get out much? Congrats to you that your life is so sheltered and wondrous that the word Duh is the worst thing you seem to have encountered thus far. Seriously, what crawled up your panties and bit you in the cooch?
(Cooch is short for "duh" among the "in" crowd. Try it on your snooty friends sometime....they'll be ever so impressed.)

MinuteMuggle said...


Did Mom invite you to her barbeque?
Then why are you all up in her grill?


swissmiss said...

Is this a real question? Seriously. I can't imagine a scenario where some dude I work for, anywhere, gets to discuss my breasts and whether or not my husband should take nude photos of me. That said, to be perfectly honest, if I were young and stupid and desperate I would work this job til the maternity leave and then quit. The right thing to do is quit as soon as you can afford it. You're not gonna be able to "educate" this guy out of being pervy with a heart-to-heart chat. He may get the hint not to talk about the creepy stuff outright but even that is doubtul.

Get off her back said...

I think everyone is being way to hard on the OP - accusing her of "enjoying it" and essentially "asking for it." This is why women don't come forward when they are harassed or abused. Men should not have to be treated w/ kid gloves. They should be able to work professionaly with younger attractive women without their wives having to fret that they will have an affair. That matches to dynamite comment made me gag. There is a thing called trust and fidelity. A woman should be able to socialize w/ males and males w/ females without having to worry about the jealous spouse. The only women I ever see insanely jealous are the ones w/ low self esteem that think every girl that walks by is prettier than them.

As for the OP, the creepiest of guys walk that fine line. They make you uncomfortable without going that extra step that would make you scream stop. They make you wonder how it happened and question yourself whether or not it is ok. I doubt the mom in this situation expected her very pregnant nanny to be at threat. But when you read craigslist there are lots of creeps w/ pregnancy fetishes.

I totally understand you not telling your husband. It is the same w/ an abused teenager not telling her parents. You know they will make a really big deal about it and you just want it to stop and go away. You don't want to lose your job and you don't want to break up his family. Right?

Could you go on leave now and still get 10 weeks paid and do the rest unpaid? You are not the problem, he is, and I have no idea how you should go about dealing with it. But don't listen to the commenters that blame you. Girls are taught to be nice and respectful and when Mr. Creep puts you in an uncomfortable situation laughing and sheepishly saying thank you does not say I'm loving this, give me more. It is you not knowing now to react and acting as you have been raised. You are not at fault here.