06 March, 2012
Done and Done!
I need opinions on my situation. Background: I am in my mid-twenties, have a bachelor’s in elementary education, 3 years experience as a lifeguard (taught swim lessons), know an extensive amount of baby signs (took ASL classes for fun), 1 year experience as a camp counselor, have clearances for working with children (state law) and 5+ years as a babysitter. I would say I have experience working with children.
Family: Dad (works) and Mom (stay at home mom) and their 4 children (8 yrs, 4 yrs, 3 yrs, and 4 months) I have been with this family for over 2 years.
Problem: Where do I start? I liked this family when I started... then it turned ugly.
1. Parenting style is too permissive. There is a counting system with time-outs, but it is not utilized enough.
2. Children whine allllllllll day long. I am not exaggerating. The 3 year old doesn’t just whine either, he screams at the top of his lungs until he makes himself gag. This will be over things like not letting him have a cookie (which his mom doesn’t want me to give him, but it’s okay if she gives him one).
3. Children do not know how to play by themselves. With a “No TV” rule while I am there, this exhausts me as a nanny. I have to entertain them the full 8 hours I am there. BTW, when I step out the door, mom turns on the TV immediately.
4. Mom is at home all day (minus running errands). We all know the down side to that. Looking over my shoulder the whole time and giving me suggestions on how to play with her kids.
5. When they “play games” it’s really them playing for 5 minutes and then throwing the pieces. I cannot get mad at them for throwing pieces because the mom thinks “it’s just them being kids”.
6. The mother does not play with her children. I think I have seen her on the ground playing maybe a total of 10 times since I have worked for her. Although I know they hired me to play with their kids and to be at home while the young ones took naps and the mom ran errands, it still blows my mind that the mom does not play with her children more.
7. I didn’t want to drive the kids around. Personally, it’s a liability issue for me. Not to mention, gas is not cheap. Now she wants me to drive them everywhere.
8. The mom just recently started giving her 3 year old melatonin to help him sleep at night. Is that normal?
9. NO SCHEDULE! I worked 40 hour weeks not knowing my hours until the week I worked (sometimes the day before). I am a flexible person, but really!? Also, constantly she asked for me to stay a little longer on days.
10. The 8 year old can’t wipe herself after going #2 on the potty. She is a normal, healthy child. Mom doesn't want her to wipe, I have to wipe or the mom has to.
11. 4 year old and 8 yr old talk to me in a disrespectful manner. “Ugggh! You did it wrong!”, “Get this, get that!", "Go away!"
12. The dad is socially awkward and has said rude things to me before.
After dealing with all this craziness: I wanted to quit a year ago. The mom wanted me to phase out and another nanny to phase in. I thought “sure! No problem. I can work a month more while you find someone”. Well it never happened. She never found anyone else. Then she found someone else (by bargaining with one of her friends who had a sitter). As a side note, this sitter also thinks this family is nuts. Then she still wanted me to work once a week. Does she not know what quit means? I finally said, “It’s never a good time to tell you this because I know you are busy (she is a stay at home mom with a nanny, come on!). I am done. Today is my 2 weeks notice. After those 2 weeks, I will be done.” She became passive aggressive and started slamming doors and not talking to me. Now she wrote me an e-mail saying how she was appalled by my behavior, like I was the one slamming doors. The e-mail contained more personal jabs at my character.
After all I have done and put up with! I have always shown up to work on time, I have said 95% yes to days when she asks me to work last minute (only declining because of appointments or sickness). I parent her children how she wants me to parent (even though I disagree with the style). Although I have listed all negative things in this post, there have been positive experiences I have had in these past 2 years with this family. However, if I look at it as a whole… I believe the negative outweighs the positive.
After the e-mail the mom sent, I am SO done. I still have one more day left and apparently she is getting a good-bye cake. Would it be bad if I didn’t show up? Thanks, SO totally done!
at 11:36 PM