Received Saturday, November 13, 2010
This is my first live-in nanny position, and I am needing some help in either deciding whether this position is worth staying in or what I can do to help this. I'm sorry this is so long, but there is a lot of history to consider. A little background on the relationship I have with the family I work for:
At first everything was great. I loved the kid, the family and I seemed to have a good, although not the absolute best, relationship. The Dadboss and I get along fine because we respect and treat each other like adults. However, the Momboss and I haven't always seen everything eye to eye on certain issues. It had never been anything major, at least in my opinion, and we just kind of continued with the way things were.
A couple weeks in, I noticed that things in my private quarters had been...let's say different. Doors I had left open were closed or lights I had left on (small ones to guide my way in at night) were turned off, including other small changes. I didn't really say anything, because I didn't want to start a discussion. A couple days later, I had been very busy because I was going out of town for the weekend and didn't have to time to put newly cleaned laundry away or to make my bed. I had packed in a rush due to time constraints, and didn't have time to clean my room properly. My private areas have almost always been kept tidy in the past as I am a fairly neat person. After this weekend trip, I came home to see my laundry had been put away in closets and drawers, my bed was made and my things were put into newly bought bins. I was pretty upset because I am a private person and I was under the impression that my room meant exactly that...my room. I had planned to talk to both of them in the morning about the importance of my privacy and if they needed to go in my room, that I would appreciate some notice beforehand. I was beat to the punch however when in the morning, Dadboss approached me and said that Momboss was in my room and needed to talk to me about what she saw. She came in the room and he told me that she was 'appalled by the mess' and that she really wanted this to work out, but that having things presentable was very important to her. She demanded my bed be made every day. She continued to make snide jokes about the way my room was decorated and kept, which not only thoroughly embarrassed me, but had also hurt my feelings because I had yet to receive solid compliments on how I was doing with the child. I would have said something right then and there, but she was so adamant about it being her home and therefore technically her space, that I felt there was no room for my opinion.
After a lot of thought, I decided to look around for another job and was offered one quite quickly. As soon as I found out this new family wanted to me, I asked to speak to my bosses and told them that in 2 weeks I would be leaving. Upon a lot of questions, I finally told Momboss that thing that had most bothered me was the fact that she not only would go into my space without any question, but that she had touched and put away my things with such authority. Of course, she disagreed and said I would have a hard time finding someone who would totally respect my privacy to the level I was expecting. The problem was, I have a very, very good relationship with the child. I love her to death, and would never want anything to happen to her. Momboss knows this, asked me to please reconsider and promised that she would never, ever go in my room again. Well, I believed her and said I would stay. Since this incident, I have felt more welcome and things were going a lot better. However, something else has come up that has caused some major stress and anxiety for me. Dadboss is currently away on a business trip and additionally, there have been a lot of burglaries in my area which makes Momboss very nervous, especially since her husband is gone. Of course, I do understand this, but this has made things difficult.
Now, I have a steady boyfriend that the parents have met, get along with and even their inlaws adore as well. They have invited him to parties at their friend's homes and a couple of times to dinner. Our routine has been that I get off class (every night, mind you) at around 930pm and he comes over. Momboss is normally asleep, but Dadboss is always awake and talks to both of us in the kitchen for a good chunk of time. There has never been any sort of problem with this, which there even shouldn't be because I was told that during my time off, I could do anything I wanted and that it was 'my time'. I have never had anyone else over besides my boyfriend. I have always tried to be very considerate with noise. I came home with my boyfriend on Sunday night to find the door had been locked with a latch, making it impossible for me to get in. This to me was a little silly considering she knew I had work at 7am with her the next morning and not only that, it was only 10pm. She unlocked the door after I called her, and said that she would wait for me to get in so that she could double check the lock. I said that my boyfriend was going to hang out a bit and watch television, as was our routine, and that I would make sure that it would be securely locked. She pretty much balked that a) I had a guest over 'so late' and b) that I was responsible enough to lock the door myself. She made remarks about me maybe drinking and forgetting (me drinking came up several times for some reason), falling asleep, inviting strangers over, etc. She also said that she was now seeing another side of me that she wasn't sure she could trust and that she had only seen me work with the child and trusted me in that regard, but wasn't sure about 'this other side'. To be quite honest, 'this other side' business came way out of left field. I hadn't been doing anything crazy that night, or in general for that matter, and I just wanted to lay down and relax in my room after a long day! So, she said that she would stay up and wait for my boyfriend to leave so that she could double check the lock. Even after assuring her many times, she refused to trust me to lock the door myself. Not ten minutes later, she called and asked how much longer we would be. So, I went into the living room and told her that we normally stay up until about 1130, in which case he leaves and I go to bed. I assured her again, that I was quite capable of locking the door myself and that she could go to sleep if she had really wanted. She was pretty irate about this and said that she was not happy with this behaviour and didn't expect to have guests over so late. Like I said, there has never been a problem before, it has been our routine, so I didn't know why it was all the sudden this huge emergency. She said that my boyfriend could just spend the night so that she wouldn't have to worry about it.
The next morning, I went upstairs to start work hoping that a goodnight's sleep would make everyone calm down...but boy, was I wrong. Momboss brought up drinking AGAIN, and basically reiterated what she had said last night with more vigor. She also added in some rude comments about my clothing style, how I decorated my room, and was also condescending towards my age. These comments are not only unnecessary, but hurtful. I tried very hard to be nice, assuring, and accommodating, but she just would not listen. Even when I would take a few steps closer to her, she would back off like I was a complete stranger! I simply did not understand her hostility and rudeness. In addition to this, she has since gone in my room again, without my consent, to retrieve linens from my bedroom closet several times. I talked to her about it and even brought up that I would like to be called prior if she needed something from my room. She of course, did not like this suggestion one bit. I mentioned the privacy issue again, and she said that if I had something private in my room, then maybe it shouldn't be in there at all. I could not believe she would say something so out of line.
My problem is, I do not know how to handle this. I am not being treated like an adult, I am being treated like a teenage daughter. I feel that I am also not being respected or trusted, when I feel that I have definitely earned it after taking such good care of their child. Like I said, I care very much for this kid and I do not want to leave her. We have a great bond and I know that I would miss her little personality very much. Please help me in what I should do. Is it worth staying and fixing? Or should I just leave? I would really appreciate some advice, please.