Sunday

Reader's Request

opinion 1
I am about to give my notice at my nanny position that I have been working at for over a year. I am so nervous. My employers are insane. I plan to post the story and details after I quit and the dust settles. I am giving 8 weeks notice because I truly want the best for my little peanut that I have been caring for. I want them to find an excellent nanny who is well qualified for him and not make a decision out of desperation.

My question for my fellow nannies (& even parents): will you share your "giving notice" story? I am trying to build up the courage to leave and it would help to hear from others who have been through it! Please share the good, the bad and the ugly! :)
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Let's hear it Readers... we know some of you have a torrid ending! Leave your Story on this thread or send it to ISYN and when we have enough they will all be Posted together as a Feature!

9 comments:

ELam said...

I recently gave my notice at a nanny job that I was at for 6 months. What started as part-time, minimum wage, 1 child quickly turned into a full-time (47.5 hours/week actually), illegal pay, 3 children, household chores, running errands, etc. situation. I started looking for work elsewhere and finally landed a job where I would be using my degree, working less, and getting paid more.

I, like you, was sick to my stomach at the thought of giving my notice. I gave the family a little over a month (our contract stated 30 days, and although I could have just blown it off since I was being paid illegally I decided to make my last days as less tense as possible, so I gave them their 30 days). The MB cried, told me she thought I was devoted to her children, cried some more, basically it was as if the world was ending for her. She was rude, disrespectful, and acted like a child. It was hell.

My advice is, you have to watch out for you. You can't stay at a job out of fear because you are just going to make yourself miserable. Why are you leaving? Do you have another job lined up? Just try and soften the blow, say "I appreciate the opportunity to work for your family and I have really enjoyed caring for your son, but I need to give you my notice because I wish to explore other opportunities/for personal reasons/I have accepted another position/the schedule isn't working me any longer/etc.". You need to have some reason in place, because they will ask why you are leaving.

Be prepared, be polite, be professional, no matter how they react. It's all you can do. I never stooped down to my previous employer's level and after a few days of her antics I think she was really embarrassed at how she acted because then she started to kiss my ass. It was probably a last ditch effort to keep me around, but the damage was done.

Good luck to you, I know how hard it is. But once you do it it is such a RELIEF. And then once you are finally done with them you feel like a whole new person haha, you will be so happy you left. It's like ripping off a bandaid, just go for it, the sooner you do it, the closer you are to getting out of there!

ELam said...

Oh I also wanted to add that after you give your verbal resignation, bring in a typed resignation letter the next day with your last day of employment in it so that there is no confusion as to when you are leaving.

ALSO, I was a nanny for years, and twice I had to give my notice because I was moving away, but both of those families paid me generously, on the books, and were great people, and they were sad but were happy and excited for me. It makes all the difference in the world when you work for someone who respects you and vice versa.

I just gave you my bad experience since you said your employers are "insane", so I'm just saying...brace yourself, they'll probably be less than kind, but that's on them, don't let it get to you! I'm anxious to hear your story.

Worked for wackos said...

I worked with a family who had a little baby girl. She was sweet as could be...but they were nuts. First off they were the most paranoid peoole in the world. They were convinced the maids wanted to kidnap the baby...that the neighbors released a mouse into their house...they had a bird cage with a stuffed bird who they talked to daily and in fact had onesies with pictures of their dead bird who they got the stuffed one to replace
I couldn't even leave to walk in the stroller
But all that aside I quit because they had no boundaries. They paid me 550 a week for 40 hours but then quickly wanted more like 65 hours a week..they were late all the time and I wasn't compensated. I finally said no I wouldn't work on thanksgiving and certainly not for free..
I gave a 2 week notice and the next am they lost it. They were real nice at first and asked to their carseat ( still in the box) and checkbook and debit card back. Then lost it..screaming yellin etc. they said I as a terrible nanny, that I had neglected the baby, that they were going to get my clearances revoked. Didn't pay me what they owed me and didn't let me work out the 2 weeks.
I got this through an agency..I had been in communication with the owner and also had kept notes. They called the corporate office and tried to place a complaint..
In the end nothing happened..they got banned from the agency for their behavior and also the agency paid me then billed their credit card. They didn't pay any taxes but come tax time I filed it...
Longest 10 weeks of my life
And a few months after I saw that wacko mom at story time. I love it because she saw how happy I was and also I made sure to let her see the Escalade I get to drive around..she tried to make small talk and I was seriously like what the hell?
These things don't end well all the time..be prepared for nastiness or for them to not let you work the notice.
My saving grace was that I had meticulous notes and had been keeping the agency aware.

Village said...

8 weeks in insane. They will either fire you immediately, make you train your replacement and then fire you, or work for 8 weeks to make your life a living hell.

First, you need to get another job. GET ANOTHER JOB FIRST. I want to be clear on that. Then give 2 weeks notice after you have a start date with your new family. If you are fired immediately, call your new family.

You can't think of anyone but yourself at a time like this. Trust me. No one but you, in this situation, has your best interests at heart.

Chelsea said...

I 100% agree with Village. I just recently left a job with a full time family, loved, loved, loved, the kids, the parents were beyond difficult. I thought it would be better for the kids to have a caregiver, that was truly happy with all aspects of the job, so I gave notice. I have been a nanny for over 8 years, and have NEVER had a problem getting a job, but it took me 2 months to find a new position. It was extremely stressful!

I left my job on great terms with the family, I told them I was looking into grad school, and the hours were too much (60+ a week), all of which is true. I didn't use them as a reference when I interviewed with new families, but I certainly could have. I gave them over 2 weeks notice, but it did backfire. I am the one who interviewed their new nanny, and trained her. I wish I had told them an exact end date, so I didn't get stuck training their new nanny. It was really uncomfortable for me, because I loved the kids so much, I was overly concerned with their new nanny choice. I think I was more nervous leaving the kids with the new nanny, than their mother!

With all that said, Village is right in saying you have to only think of yourself, which I know is hard to hear! As a nanny, I think one of the qualities we have is that we always put the kids ahead of ourselves, but in this situation, you really have to think of you, and your needs. I know you love your charge, (because I have been in your shoes), but you have to do what is right for you! 8 weeks is way too much time, nice of you, but not necessary. I would say 3 weeks at the most.

Hope this helps!

SlowyaRoll said...

I'd be skeptical of a family who couldn't at least wait the standard 2 weeks.

ELam said...

Anonymous -- Does your new/future employer know that you are currently working? I worked for a ridiculous family that also wanted 30 days notice, I was hired at a new job and discussed in the interview that ideally I would like 30 days before starting, but 2 weeks at the very least as that is the norm when giving notice. They understood completely and actually gave me a month before I started with them. If your new family wants you enough then they can hopefully wait 2 weeks...but really you should have brought this up in the interview process. I'm not sure they will be able to wait 30 days for you. You need to discuss it with them and then move forward with giving notice to your current family.

ELam said...

I didn't mean to make it sound like I went in to my interview telling them "I will not start up with you for another month and that's that!". When the question of "When would you be available to start?" came up that's when I addressed the issue.

Nanny Fine said...

Oh boy. After 3.5 years of service of the 'above and beyond' variety, I asked for a week off (unpaid, as I have NEVER been paid for a vacation or a day off) so that I could have my carpal tunnel surgery. It had been getting increasingly difficult to carry the baby, the groceries, take the baby in and out of the car seat, unfold the stroller, tie the older ones shoes, zip up coats, cook, etc. I was told it was not an emergency and that it would be better if I could wait until the summer.
I then asked my husband to use one of his 4 weeks vacation to come to work with me post surgery to help me take care of the kids since I couldn't get off. I told MB and she said great! Then of course I realized that what I was doing was pure insanity. Who would make these kinds of crazy arrangements??? And if the family truly cared for me the way they said they did, and couldn't live without me, why wouldn't they let me have a week for surgery? On top of this, the MB kept asking me for more and more, to run errands, grocery shop, pick up her blinds at the blinds shop, go get a book for her at barnes and noble. I cooked, cleaned up, did the entire families laundry, vacuumed, took the Autistic child to his weekly therapy, took the kids to their check ups, took the baby to gymboree, all with my own car and no reimbursement for gas. Many times she couldn't pay me the full amount of my check, and would 'owe' me for the next week. I would take the kids out to eat or order pizza, or buy them a toy, or bring dunkin donuts on my way to work. I never asked for or recieved money for this stuff.

The night before it went down, I was suffering bad tendinitis and the carpal tunnel was bad. I had been working from 9 am until 11 pm, a 14 hour day, and was due back in at 830 am the next morning. Mind you I am wearing a wrist brace at this time, and had had a dr appt the day before. She came in at 11:15 pm and said "You're just gonna have to drop me off at Audi in the morning so I can pick up my car" - I said "sure" without looking at her, i was just boiling over. Then she said "And I'm going to need you to drop this off at the blinds store, they cut it wrong" - in my head I'm counting how many times I will have to lock and unlock the car seat, and how many times i will have to fold and unfold the stroller and put it back in my car. I said "Sure" probably very tersely. And then she reminded me that the baby has Gymboree in the morning as well. I just said ok, see you tomorrow and left.

In the morning when I got there, she said, "Why was I catching attitude from you last night?" and I finally told her that she has been overwhelming me lately. Well, she went off!! She told me that I was ungrateful and that she treated me so WELL!!!! I said not really. She got madder! I said in 3.5 years I've never had a paid day off, or paid sick day or paid vacation. She said Why would I pay you not to come to work?

Then she said that she was my employer and that I needed to treat her with respect. I almost fell over at that one! I began saying what about me! I need surgery, but she didn't let me finish. She said I want you to leave. Just go! She asked me how many hours she owed me for, and I said 24. As she angrily wrote out the check, she said "The kids will be devastated that you're leaving"- i looked at this wacky nose job with a boob job and liposuction, and I said, "You just fired me!"