Sunday

Candid Camera

OPINION
Hi. I don't know where to begin, I am not much of a blogger, but have enjoyed reading stories here on ISYN. I have a very sticky situation and am highly upset and just need to vent, advice would be great.

I was recently let go from an amazing nanny job I had. I had this job for almost 8 months and am so upset, I can barely eat anything and I have been just trying to recollect myself. Im staying with my sister and her husband, and my niece. So, right now finance is not a problem. I have a spare room with bathroom, for myself. So, for now just supported by family and when I'm ready, I will begin to job hunt, sister has lots of friends with kids. I was basically caught off guard and terminated out of no where, what hurts the most is feeling betrayed.

I interviewed for a SAHM, who also had a side business and did a lot of charity events, focused on animal charity and stuff. They have a wonderful little girl, who was shy of being one when I interviewed. Basically she was a good MB. Great, actually. She overpaid since I was only working for her 4 days a week, 7 hour days-to complete 40 hours pay. On top of that she gave me a gas card weekly, as it was a 15-20 minute commute from my place. So, basically I did not spend gas money, because she gave me gas allowance. I had free roam of their house, she was not home when I was there--obviously why I nannied. They had a pool I could use and go free on foods I wanted. And, she encouraged outings for the little one and I would get gas reimbrusement for the milage. I didn't have to worry about paying out of pocket for anything really. MB even stated if we stayed in good terms, and some unforseen reason hours had to be cut, she would help find a job for me and severence pay of 2 months, with good references!

What I did NOT know was that, as kind as she was and laid back... was that I was on camera! They also had mini microphones hidden, so it on when I was there and she wasn't. I had no idea, she never asked my opinion on nanny cams or anything! Basically, I thought I had a dream job. I loved the LO. I said something stupid....and I know I shouldn't have. The DB was never ever home!!! Went months before meeting him, though I did occasionally pick up the phone when he called, as I was allowed to take messages. I had seen pics of him, and to be honest, with the way she talked about him and what he seemed to provide, I thought he must be an amazing man. I had no plans of doing anything, even if I met him...which I eventually did. Basically, he came home unexpectantly while MB was away and, I just felt mezmerized by him. I felt like I knew him, and we clicked. I saw him again, when they had date night and was asked to sit for them. He and I chatted like old friends, while she got ready. I had NO idea I was being filmed and developed a crush on DB. A girlfriend called and without realizing it, I mentioned how fond I was of him and how lucky she was. Thing is, I also mentioned, I would not mind having him and since MB had told me the same day that DB would be working from home 2 days a week for the next few months for a project. I told my friends, I could not wait to get to know him better, was more curious then meaning any harm. BUT of course it came off like I was ready to make a move, but I know better! It was just girl talk!

The next week, MB started acting kind of uneasy, at first I thought she was having a bad day, but as the week flew I knew it was something more serious and probably something I did or said regarding my charge, and by that evening before my shift was over for the week, she said we needed to talk. She basically stated that I was a wonderful caregiver and that it was amazing to see how well my charge and I had bonded and she knew my charge was in good hands. Then she stated, "I also now know, that I am not too comfortable with the whole idea of having someone nanny in my home when my husband is home, that I feel could be more interested in him then in the job"...and then she explained how for her own sanity and peace of mind a camera, and microphone were on when I was there, and she had planned on removing the camera and microphone but neglected to as she forgot. Once she remembered and was fine with not having footage about our day, she started packing things up and then stumbled upon a recording, and in that recording she heard the phone conversation. I guess she back tracked to videos of days where DB was home, which was rare-- as he popped in unexptectantly 5 times since I was hired on, and noticed how intent our conversation was and I guess became upset about leaving me alone with him. She said "It's not my husband, but more of you, I do not approve of homewrecking, and if I can control who comes to my house, to stop it, I will. I've seen innocent things evovle and I know it can go sinister, and the kids do not deserve this nor the innocent spouse!" She then stated, maybe it wasn't like it seemed but for peace of mind, she would prefer an older caretaker until her duties were finished and told me, she would compensate for the months pay that I was owed but nothing more and stated, she was did not feel right being a reference.

I am highly upset, while I admit, it was dumb what I said, if I knew I was being recorded, I would have NOT said that, I would be more professional....so upset, and it's hard to put myself together, but am trying. Was what I did a firing offense?... I do not see it this way..... and is there anything I can do about this ?...

36 comments:

Zarine said...

Sorry OP. Depending on where you are, (or maybe in general) videotaping and recording without knowledge or permission is illegal and the MB shouldn't have done so without informing you. On the other hand, if you were the MB, could you see her side? I know it sucks, because the position seems great, but it is what it is. Good luck.

Ms. Vivienne LePeaux said...

I am sorry, OP, that sucks. We all say ill-advised things when we don't think we're being spied on, so I feel for you.

However, I have to say that if I were the MB I would have done exactly what she did. When I nanny, I ALWAYS behave as if a camera is recording everything I do every minute of the day... you just never know.

scheel said...

It is indeed legal in all 50 states to use a hidden camera. However, it is illegal to record speech without a person's consent in the following 15 states: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, Oregon, Pennyslvania, and Washington.

Source: http://childcare.about.com/cs/evaluations/bb/nannycam.htm

OP said...

Well guess I'm screwed then. Don't live in any of those states!!!!

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

Sorry OP you lost your job.

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

But I have to admit it was all your doing.

While I do not condone being recorded while working, what's done is done and it is what it is.

You cannot realistically expect the Mom Boss to keep you on after seeing and hearing you say you wouldn't mind getting to know her husband better once he starts working from home. I mean, seriously???! Even if you didn't mean anything, look at things from her perspective. How does she know whether or not you really meant it? She doesn't.

If I were you, I would count my loss and move on. I do not think it was unfair that you were let go and I think you deserved it fully. In your next position, please try to keep it professional and always assume you are being filmed. Keep your guard up. And there are plenty of single guys out there...you don't need to develop crushes on married men, especially married men w/kids.

nashville nanny said...

I 110% support the MB for firing you. And give her a lot of credit for doing it with the level of class she did... I wouldn't have been so nice. What a troll you are!

To ask if there's anything you can do about it is a joke. What would you suggest? MB take you back?? You're an immature child who could have potentially caused drama in her home life. You should be ashamed.

Oh! And re: the nanny cam... I have one for my puppy sitter, so you can be damn sure I would use one if I had kids. With people like you out there, I'm validated in my concerns.

Village said...

Well I guess you learned something. Do not covet the boss's husband.

nycmom said...

I swear the MB just posted about this on urbanbaby in past day, but post appears to have been deleted.

I am not insecure about hiring attractive nannies. I've hired some truly gorgeous women over the years. But if I heard you "clicked" with my husband, had a crush, and wanted to have more time alone with him -- yes, that would make me uncomfortable to continue employing you. I trust my husband, but I think any woman would be foolish to place a known, plotting temptation in front of their partner several days a week in their home!

Also, a bit unprofessional and indiscreet to say those things while working in their home. We all complain about colleagues and bosses once in a while, but I would never risk doing it at my place of work. You should always be professional at work, though granted a nanny's profession involves more nitty gritty and personal stuff than many others, it should not involve gossiping with girlfriends at work about how hot DB is.

If I were MB, I would have had DB sit down with you too to reinforce that he also felt it was inappropriate and try to convey to you from his perspective as well. Imagine if the genders were reversed. I would definitely have had my husband there.

It sounds like the mom was level-headed, paid a fair severance and is being honest not to use her for a reference. I would focus on these positives and move on. I can't imagine you have any recourse. The recording with audio in your state was legal. If anything, YOU created a hostile work environment and potential sexual harassment (though I doubt an employee can legally harass an employer under these laws), not them.

nannytothree said...

I have no problem with nanny cams, and just assume that I am on camera at all times. The difference is, I've never been a live in. If I have something private to say, I wait and say it when I'm in the privacy of my own home. I'm sure I have said things in private that my bosses would not be happy to hear, as we all have. Don't tell me you've never vented about, or had a crush on a boss. It happens, but I know not to take it any further than that. OP, there really is nothing you can do at this point. You made an honest mistake, but I can't blame MB for letting you go. Maybe you'll reconsider living in, or be MUCH more careful next time. Consider it a learning experience. Always assume you are being watched!

Bethany said...

Lesson learned.

I'm sorry you are jobless.

But you aren't blames less here.

I can understand why MB fired you even if you didn't act on your feelings.

What you said was unprofessional to garner your being fired.

I bet from now on you will remember this and always watch what you say when at work.

Bethany said...

also, mom shouldn't be foolish enough to think that an older nanny will prevent a straying husband. If he wants to cheat he will and there isn't a damn thing she can do about it.

nynanny said...

I'm with the PP's advice. Too bad you got caught but it sounds like what she did wasn't illegal. Just be careful what you say from now on.

Laura said...

I agree with Nashville Nanny. What you did was thoughtless and stupid, and you're lucky MB was so nice about firing you. What you said was completely inappropriate. Certainly you should not have had those conversations on the phone while ON THE JOB!

I'm sorry you're jobless, but it sounds like it was best for everyone involved.

The Noble Nanny said...

Let me just say that I am glad while reading previous comments, that I am not alone in this opinion. I normally am very understanding when it comes to the nannies point of view, but as far as your story is concerned, I refuse to feel the least bit of empathy for you. As a caregiver, you sound like you are wonderful, as I am sure this mother wouldn't have kept you on for as long as she did if you weren't. However, I am going to give you some tough love here for a moment.

The fact that you even had to audacity to entertain thoughts about another woman's husband, let alone your MB that you claim to respect, is down right shameful. One thing I've learned in observing marriages that have fallen apart, it always starts as a little thing, something seemingly innocent. The mother was right to let you go when she did. Quite frankly, she did you a favor, as it sounds like you were headed down a very destructive road had you kept up your "innocent" flirtations with this man.

My advice?

Find a single mother to work for!

alex said...

Sorry OP. I would have done the same thing the MB did and probably not as nice. As a wife she needs to make sure that her home is safe and by what you said you said (and we have no idea, so it may have come off even worse as it sounds), she did the right thing. I know how threatened I would feel if the nanny said she was really looking forward to spending time with my husband. While you said you understand boundaries, you have to understand that things can happen quickly whether you mean them to or not.

I'm sorry that you lost your job but it was all your doing. Anytime you are nannying you have to assume you are on camera and anything you say or do can be seen. You now know and it was nice of her to pay you for the rest of the month. You learned your lesson and now it is time to move on.

OhhPlease said...

I echo what all the PP said. MB had the right to fire you. She handled it much better than I would. You can't honestly think that this could be fixed can you? Just from the way you worded your story even I can tell that you have feelings much deeper than thinking the DB is "hot". Perhaps it's a blessing in disguise that you got fired now than later before things got REALLY out of hand. Let this be a lesson learned OP.

NannyPants said...

MB was right to fire you. Like many of the previous poster's said, I would have been a lot less calm and classy about it. Seriously, you are unbelievable....YOU have not been betrayed, you betrayed your MB.
You should seriously consider another profession. Who is to say this won't happen again? Don't even try to blame this on MB for recording you and not telling you. Get over it--you're a nanny and nanny cams are extremely common. If we all knew about them, they wouldn't find out things that are grounds for firing like your case.

UmassSlytherin said...

MB did what any smart woman would do. OP: you showed a great deal of immaturity, incredibly bad judgement, and a huge lack of professionalism by discussing your DB inappropriately on the premises.

Save the "girl talk" for slumber parties. When you are at work, be a grown-up.

Fiona said...

No this cannot be fixed. She would be out of her mind to give you another chance.

I'm willing to wager she felt her husband was a little to interested in you.

Learn from this.

What you said was not appropriate.

The thought you were looking forward to flirting with this man while he worked at home is a huge issue.

You need to take a long hard look at yourself.

And no matter what you need to always carry yourself professionally.

Truth Seeker said...

Call me naive but I always thought the true purpose of a "nanny-cam" was to protect the child...not the husband.

bostonnanny said...

I would never have given you severence. I don't know how I would have acted if I saw and heard that footage, could have gone two ways with me either rage or bitchy lecture depending on how long I had to process the information. I def would have booted you out ASAP. You can't blame the MB for making sure her nest is safe and sound. Any mother bird would have pecked the shit out of you.

I would either put my kids in daycare or hired a nice manny after that incident. You totally fucked yourself on that one. Find yourself a boyfriend and stop fantasizing about married men. Then look for a single mom or gay couple to work for.

luckoftheirish said...

Thats the ONE thing that turns me from a lady to an INSANE, VIOLENT lioness~messing with my family!!!! Youre fortunate she didnt leave you bloody & staggering for the door. Count your blessings. Had anyone in my family hired you, your fingers wouldnt be healed enough to type.

MissMannah said...

I have to echo everyone else here and say the MB handled this a lot better than I would have. You deserved to be fired and you learned a valuable life lesson from it. Move on.

Aries said...

I don't blame her for firing you. IF the husband hit on you, you'd go for it. I no you would so no it's not 'girl talk'. I would never talk like that but i do no many 'homewreckers' who do. Kudos to the Mom!

Ps: An don't think for a second it has anything to do with jealousy. She knows how these situations can turn out. Although theres a good chance her husband wouldn't ever actually be with you. If you were throwing yourself on him, you'd look like an easy hit an he might possibly go for it. You would ruin that whole families life. You would of gained feelings that WERENT mutual and you would of been crushed as well. MB is smart AN did you a favor as well. A Blessing in Disquise.

Aries said...

Truthseeker - this MB did protect her child. If you can't see that then IDK what to tell you.

Vanessa said...

What you said was definitely grounds for firing you. Why would anyone want to have you around when you're lusting over the DB. The fact that you told your friends you couldn't wait to get to know him better is definitely a red flag. No matter what whether you meant it or not, you're thinking it, and it doesn't take that much to go from fantasizing to homewrecking.

The point of having a camera is that you don't know you're being watched. What would be the point of having one if you know there's one?

Phoenix said...

well its not your house. not your say if you are filmed.

And I would have fired you. In fact you would have been lucky if you were just fired. I probably would have socked you in the nose

SLNanny said...

I agree with everyone. MB handled this with more class than most would have. I doubt you'll fully understand the implications of thhis until you are married.

Phoenix said...

Castro

There are times in life that I do truley get surprised. You have surprised me in that I never thought I would ever meet someone else more dumb than the last. And voila you come along

SLNanny said...

Phoenix, you said it all! Well done :)

UmassSlytherin said...

I agree with Phoenix.

Dr. Juris said...

I just can't get over the fact that the OP doesn't see this as a big deal and actually thinks she could somehow sue or get her job back. AND THAT SHE FEELS BETRAYED. Wow.

Castro Queenz said...

Please be nice to me. I am just trying to make it in this crazy, mixed up world like the rest of you!
God Bless!

Tales from the (Nanny)Hood said...

OP, you made the basic mistake of believing that you were no longer being recorded, and then you acted like an idiot by developing a crush on your EMPLOYER.

Then, you chatted at work with a friend about how much you'd like to "have" your DB.

You're lucky you weren't B!+<# slapped before being fired.

Grow up and if you can't see employers as employers instead of crushes, stop working as a nanny.

princessnanny said...

"I never would've said it if I knew I was being taped"... Umm the whole point of a hidden cam is so you don't know! I cant believe I'm reading this. Awful.