Received Friday, October 22, 2010
I really like the family I nanny for. I've been with them for two years. However, there is one major problem. Their house is incredibly dirty, cluttered, and unorganized. When I first started it was just a little messy, but she did have a cleaning lady who came once every two weeks. She let the cleaning lady go for some reason and has not hired a new one (its been over a year now). She says she is going to do the cleaning but she doesn’t. She (my boss) does not want me doing any of the cleaning and honestly, I wouldn’t know where to start if she did. I do empty the dishwasher, take out the trash, and clean up after the kids. If I didn’t do it, I don’t think anyone else would. When I come in on Monday the house is disgusting. Trash is piled up everywhere, dirty dishes are overflowing the sink. When I come in every morning there are still dirty dishes sitting on the kitchen table from the previous night’s dinner. Most of the time there is still uneaten food sitting on the plates. If I don’t clean it up immediately, the 3-year-old boy will come down from his crib and sit at the table and begin eating the old food (he has done this in front of the mom before and she didn’t bat an eye). He also picks up old sippy cups that have been left out and drinks the old curdled milk. He has gotten sick a few times from doing this. The mother is a pediatrician so you’d think she’d know better. She thinks nothing of letting the gallon of milk sit out for several hours and then just putting it back in the fridge or serving the kids rotten fruit and vegetables or expired meats. I DO NOT eat a thing from their house. Their fridge looks like a science experiment. If I don’t have time to pack a lunch then I don’t eat that day. The baby flings food from his highchair all around the kitchen and it doesn’t get cleaned up. There is food caked onto the kitchen floor that I can’t even get up. They have problems with mice and rats and I have found rat turds in the kids’ toy box! They also don’t believe in baby proofing anything so there are no cabinet locks or baby gates anywhere and the baby is given free reign of the house. Most of my day is spent chasing after him cleaning up the things he has pulled off of the shelves or out of the cabinets.
I also think they are borderline hoarders. Their 6,000 square foot house is packed to the gills with toys, toys, and more toys. Many of the toys are broken or have little tiny pieces that I am constantly pulling out of the baby’s mouth. The kids have so many toys I have trouble buying them birthday and Christmas gifts because there is nothing that exists that they don’t already have. The neighborhood association sends them letters all of the time about how the outside of their house looks (if only they could see the inside). Clean clothes (which she does not want me washing) are not folded and put away, but simply thrown in piles all around the house. I often cannot find anything clean for the kids to wear. The kids are only bathed once a week so they are often dirty looking. Library books go missing never to be found, homework gets misplaced, doctor’s appointments get missed because she doesn’t remember when they are. Two of the kids are struggling in school and having some social issues due to the lack of structure. Overall, it is very chaotic. I really like the family. The mom is a sweetheart and I’m very close with the kids. The dad is kind of odd, but they treat me well and always spoil me at the holidays. I’m torn because I don’t want to leave, but I can’t stand these working conditions. I know I could find another job in a nice clean organized house, but the parents could be a total nightmare. I know I should be thankful for a steady job and income (although I do have to ask for my check every week or she will forget), the mess is just really getting to me. What would you guys do? I feel really awkward saying anything to my boss about it. I think she is a bit embarrassed by the mess (has commented on it before). Would you just suck it up and deal with it and keep telling yourself it could be worse somewhere else?