Tuesday

No DC Metro for these Three

OPINION
Hi.. I've never sent in to your site before but I saw this is how you can send in nanny sightings so I'm hoping this is ok! It pertains to an issue I'm having regarding today but I'm positive it'll come up again so I need opinions :)


I recently began working for a new family and for the most part, things are going ok. Not great, but nothing major or out of the ordinary. They live right outside DC and want me to take the kids on the metro when we do things. I have taken the metro here ONCE and used the subway in NYC before but that's as far as my experience goes. I feel really uncomfortable taking 2 small children on the metro when I don't feel confident I'll get where I'm going even by myself. I'm perfectly comfortable driving in the city, though. I guess they don't want to pay for the expensive parking in DC, though that hasn't been mentioned, and I haven't asked for money for anything thus far (small things like crafts at Michaels - I would for the parking garage though). I mentioned to MB that I know nothing about the metro system and she said "oh it's easy! The kids love it!" And last night I got a message from DB asking if I'd like to meet mom for lunch tomorrow (today) and how much the kids love the metro. I responded that lunch sounds good but I'm unfamiliar with the metro system and don't mind driving. I got no response. There was nothing mentioned about this in the interview, and my contract only mentions terms of me driving the children. Am I being a baby about this? This is my first nanny job, I'm taking a break from teaching at the moment. I don't want to make a big deal about nothing but at the same time I simply don't feel comfortable with it. I don't know how to make that clear to the parents. They're obviously used to doing it since they live right there but I'm just not! What do you guys think?

55 comments:

Student Nanny said...

If you were comfortable with the NYC subway, then the DC metro will really be a piece of cake once you get the hang of it. I've lived in several big cities and still find the NYC subway to be one of the trickiest to maneuver and the DC Metro one of the easiest. Especially if you're taking it at off times (as you likely would be for child activities). I would just make sure you have the parents buy and re-fill a SmarTrip card for your use with the children.

bostonnanny said...

I grew up in the city and have taken the train all my life so I'm always taken aback by people who say they are scared to take the train. It just doesn't register well with me, if your scared of being attacked then don't go alone at night in a dangerous area, if your scared your gonna get lost then map it out and if you do just ask for help and start over. I would be very wary of a nanny stating her reason for not wanting to take the train is because she is scared of getting lost. If that stresses her out so much then I would wonder what would happen in an actual emergency.

It sounds more like you don't want to deal with the hassle of the train system and would rather drive and have the parents pay for parking then actually spend the time learning it. Did you ever consider that the parents might be scared of your driving abilities? Maybe they don't feel comfortable yet with you driving their children in the city. I'm sure city traffic can be a pain in DC and slightly dangerous if your not a regular city driver. So your option is to straight tell them you refuse to use the train system or spend the time to learn it.

Bethany said...

I can relate to you being nervous about an unfamiliar system.

I lived in that area for a short time and honestly prefer the metro over driving.

Do you have friends in the area?

Perhaps you and a friend can take a day and ride the metro so you can get familiar with it, and feel more confident when your out with your charges.

Do you think mom would be ok doing a ride through with you one day? I've had previous employers give me the run down of their neighborhoods including buse routes etc when needed.

Doesn't hurt to ask.

Once you get the hang of the metro it will be so much easier!

missmarymack said...

Honestly? Yes, you are being a baby.
Why would this even be a question? Take a day when you're not working and ride the metro like a champion. The parents probably feel uncomfortable with their children being in a car when they don't know the driver that well.

DrivingMissNanny said...

What is the metro and why would it be safer than the nanny driving? Is it a bus or a train? I personally am horrible with directions, maps and public transportation. It shoots my anxiety level up to a ten. I understand exactly how you feel. I will not take a bus, train or any kind of public transportation ever. I was attacked when I was a teenager and molested on the bus on my way home from school. That explains part of the fear. But for some reason I have a mental block when it comes to maps, directions, etc. I would be too insecure to figure out the public transportation. I've been in emergency situations and I'm extremely calm, so I wouldn't make that assumption. I hope you can figure out how to use the metro or that your MB will be understanding and take your wishes into consideration. Her ignoring your email was rude and I think its a sign of bad communication. I think you should have a sit down about this before it gets more uncomfortable.

Belle Vierge said...

How old are the kids, and how good are they at staying with you? I agree that it's not a big deal using public transportation, especially if you're familiar with the subway in NYC.

That said, when I was an au pair in the suburbs of Paris, I HATED taking my three kids (4, 7, 9) on the RER and the metro into Paris. The youngest held my hand, I had to walk at a pace he could manage, and the older two saw nothing wrong with darting into the crowd so I could barely see them. At one point I made all three of them hold my hands. They whined about it, but it was morning rush hour, and they wouldn't stay by my side!

If it's *just* using the subway, you need to use it several times yourself ASAP to become familiar with it. If you're worried about handling the kids, ask your MB & DB how they do it on the subway. Clearly they've taken the kids before, and apparently the kids love it.

Village said...

I think you need to say clearly, 'I don't feel that I can assure the safety of the children on the Metro.' That should do it.

I'm not sure I would either. Children can dart in an instant. If they dart out a door that closes . . . my heart just about stopped thinking about it.

Stand your ground. If your job is to keep the children safe, and it is, then use your own best judgement. That is what the parents are paying for, isn't it?

Op said...

Exactly, village! I just don't feel good about it and was super nervous and def not in the mindset I should be because I kept focusing on everything else! The youngest is in his stroller (with the broken wheel that sticks sideways so it wont move) but the 5 yr old isn't the best listener. I cant physically push the stroller with one hand and hold hers with the other because then the wheel turns and sticks and we're stuck! Parents don't hold hands much.. the kids are always running out the door or up the street with no one following which absolutely is not ok when I'm there but they're used to that.

Op said...

My other comment is gone and I don't know why but all I'm going to bother to type again is..
1. They gave me not even a days notice so there was no time to practice
2. My sense of direction is unrelated to my skills in taking care of a child
3. I drive the kids to their other activities so that shouldn't be an issue
4. If you grew up using g it of course you feel comfortable but you cant expect everyone to feel that way

Susannah said...

1. You should have them get the stroller fixed or a new one.

That is if it's actually broken and you don't have the brake on.

2. You are going to need to teach the children to mind you.

3. You can frame your resistance to taking them on the metro as wanting to ensure their safety. But that make your employers view you as incompetent.

4. Maybe on your day off take a day and ride the metro over an over again until you get comfortable.

5. Are you prepared to be fired over this? If by all means stand your ground.

I truly understand being uncomfortable on public transport, but sometimes we have to give a little, go beyond our comfort zones, and grow.

nycmom said...

This would be a dealbreaker for me as a parent living in the city. I actually had this issue with an au pair in NYC (more au pair stories, sorry!). She was terrified of public transport with the kids. I was sympathetic and offered to ride with her for several days and teach her. I was not at all bothered by her asking for help. But she simply refused to learn or even try. That was a no go for me. In blackouts in NYC and in occasional other situations, the buses are the only way to get around. In my situation it was 3 kids and I did not expect her to take all 3 on a regular basis though I do think 2 is completely doable especially if one is in a stroller. I just wanted her to be comfortable using public transport in case of emergency or traffic jam. We did not own a car and I was fine paying for taxis for most travel with 3 kids.

Regardless, be honest. Tell them you are not comfortable and familiar. Any normal parents will want to help you and not penalize you. But an unwillingness to learn would not be okay for me.

MissMannah said...

Honey, you have to just learn it. And the others are right when they said it is easy once you get familiar with it. I've ridden subways in a couple of different cities and the DC Metro is really user-friendly in my opinion. But you have to put in the effort to familiarize yourself with it. Also, they have workers there who will help you get where you need to go, if you just ask. (They are incredibly rude, so you have to be pushy with your questions.) And I am not someone who grew up in the DC area. I lived there for only 2 years and only needed to ride the Metro a handful of times. If I could get the hang of it, you can too.

op said...

Welp, I'm not an idiot! I don't have the brake on the stroller. I checked all 4 wheels repeatedly.

And yeah, if they fired me over that I'd gladly go elsewhere. I'm only doing this right now due to family issues. Otherwise I'm a certified special ed teacher. This isn't my career and if it didn't pan out, I wouldn't be heartbroken. I'd think that was a stupid thing to fire over. Their choice, but its also my choice.

anonymous mom said...

OP,
You seem like an amazing nanny. Don't take the harsh words of some of these posters to heart, you're always going to have someone stirring the pot. Common sense would tell you to check all 4 wheels if it was sticking so that wasn't a helpful comment. Good luck to you, I hope it all works out for you.

Susannah said...

Stir the pot! Believe me if I wanted to start trouble I could.

OP, asked for our opinions. The thing about opinions not everyone has the same one.

Nor did I call you an idiot ,OP. That was your choice of words not mine.

It wouldn't be the first time someone though a wheel was broken and it was just a brake, or the wheel turned the other. way.

Susannah said...

nycmom, I agree with you again!

I can understand being uncomfortable using transit in a place your not familiar with.

I think it's reasonable for this nanny to tell her employers that. I also think it's fair for her to ask them to go through a run through with her featuring all the places she will need to bring her charges.

I think it's reasonable for this nanny to go out on her own , or with a friend if she'd feel more comfortable, and spend the day working out the system.

I don't understand your flat out refusal to try.

Susannah said...

Nope! I'm not, Curious!

Are you?

OceanBlue said...

Are you refusing to take the metro or are you uncomfortable and willing to learn?

Being uncomfortable and refusing are completely different.


I don't think you are a baby. I do think it's silly to lose a job over this.

Of course your bosses don't want to pay parking! It's expensive and there is a perfectly good alternative in the metro.

If you want to be paid for your craft supplies ask to be reimbursed.

1234 said...

How is she an amazing nanny?

Because she does crafts with the kids?

To answer your question, you are being a baby.


Did you think being a nanny was going to be easy? That you were going to run the show without any input from the parents?

Do you know how you get used to things? You try them.

Use the skills you have with your students. I doubt you allow them to get away with not trying something because it's a challenge.
I think you should refuse to use the metro.

See what happens. I hope you get fired.

You are clearly to immature to be caring for children as a nanny and as a teacher.

NannyPants said...

Uhhh,....you're being kind of a baby. Yes I get it it's intimidating but you got a nanny job in an area where public transit is EXTREMELY common and relied upon. Use your days off to get familiar with it. It's really not hard...go online and look at the map and you will see where each color line intersects so you can figure out which stops you'll have to make to switch lines. It's not bad at all. I ride with my charge all the time and learned it by myself. You won't get lost...as long as you are in a metro station you can get to where you need to be.

ericsmom said...

OP

Well, I bet now you wish you were teaching at this moment. LOL.

I understand your fear. I am like that with the subway in NYC. If I use it its only with my husband. Once, I ended up in the bronx.
Uggghhh, most people are good that you meet on the subway, though. I had alot of people help with figuring it out. Sometimes, you just have to swallow your pride and ask for help.

TheDevil said...

opsaid,

I'm going to side with you. You should be uncomfortable. The metro is an evil place.

Kim Kardashian rides the metro, and that's all you need to know to know how evil of a place it is.

Bethany said...

Is there a reason beyond being unfamiliar with the subway system in DC that you do not want to use it?

Are you feeling overwhelmed with the position in general? Are you perhaps looking for a way out?

op said...

Lol I'm unwilling to try? That's funny, I'm pretty sure I *took them* on the train yesterday. Nowhere did I say I refused to do it. I just said I didn't have the ability to try out the metro before we went because I wasn't given any notice.

It is about more than simply the use of the metro. I'm uncomfortable with the way some things are presented regarding it. I'm uncomfortable with being given a map to use that didn't have the correct metro station on it. I'm uncomfortable being told to use the elevator but it was not marked and not in the same place as the clearly marked escalators. There are quite a few things I'm less than thrilled about but I get scared to post (any more) detail because you never know who might be reading. I already gave clearly identifying details so I don't want to list other specifics. I'm sure you can understand why.

I do wish I was teaching, in fact, it broke my heart to quit my school and leave those kids. My father is very ill and god willing will be getting a bone marrow transplant soon. He'll need around the clock care and daily trips to the hospital for 2 months. Taking this job gave me the schedule to be able to help my mom as much as possible because when school starts my schedule will be only 5 hrs a day. Am I totally happy? Not at all. Is this about more than the simple use of public transportation? Like I said, yeah, it is. Of course I asked for opinions so I expect to get varying ones. There's a way to give an opinion/advice in a polite, decent way, and then there's being rude. There's a difference. Those with nasty input aren't going to impact me in any way because I won't give it a 2nd thought. Those of you who were able to express your thoughts like a normal, decent person, I appreciate you taking the time to respond! lo

nynanny said...

You're amazing, OP(for more than just doing crafts, 1234). For giving up a job you love to help your mom and take care of your dad. Hopefully the ppl that gave you a little grief will see why you're so anxious (for lack of a better word) Thanks for coming back to fill us in on the reasons why. Good luck to you and your family!

Bethany said...

I'm sorry to hear about your father!

I wish him well.

I agree it was unfair for your bosses to expect you to use the subway without a trial rum.

Though in their defense they probably figured it wouldn't be a problem for you because you used it in NYC.

A run through is best, as you said maps can get tricky, and workers aren't always helpful.

As for other concerns you have address them with your bosses.

Try and remain neutral when you do, so it doesn't seem as though your blaming them, focus on finding a solution.

Nanny jobs like any other job require give and take from all parties involve.

Hugs to you I hope you find some stress relief soon.

op said...

Oh, to clarify, my father will need daily hospital visits for 2 months, but constant care for 6 months to a year. That's why the fall hours are ideal for me. I realized it might sound like 2 months of care when school doesn't even start for 2 months. I took this job with long hours to save up money this summer and then have plenty of time to be with my family come fall.

Off topic from my original question, but has anyone ever dealt with a death in the family while working as a nanny? Things took a turn for the worse the week before this job started. I'm worried that he may not make it and then I'll be at this new job and not able to have the time off I need etc. My school was very understanding about my needs during this difficult time, and of course there was other staff to step in had I ever needed to be out.

***i just want to say the family I work for is very nice. There are some cultural differences due to the dad being european. MB acknowledges this. But they really are nice people, I just have some things I'm unhappy about with the situation in general. I'm sure they're magnified due to the other major stressors in my life at this time. I know I have to do my best to seperate this from work but it is an adjustment, in so many ways, from working in a school. Not to mention, I worked in a non-public school for kids with emotional issues, so my class had 7 kids and 5 staff members, along with additional support staff outside the classroom. I could take breaks as needed. If I got bad news, I could take time in the bathroom or leave early (rare but it did happen, particularly around the time he was diagnosed) and the children and parents knew he was sick - not specifics, but it was a small school with a tiny community feel. I just feel its important to reiterate that the people I am working for now are perfectly nice people, it's just obviously a different situation. Ideal in some ways (hours, pay), not so great in others.

bostonnanny said...

Op,
Unforuantely, a nanny position is nothing like a school system. Most of the time everything falls on you and unless your have wonderful employers, you will find this job stressful and not at all supportive of your personal life. To be honest, if things with your father are that serious I would quit and move back home. It will be hard for your employers to let you go home early often or take days off as needed. They won't have the back up care like your school and would replace you if the personal days got out of hand. They may be sympathetic but will always look out for themselves.

I think it would be better to spend the rest of your summer out of work and living at home then trying to deal with the emotional pain around children. A summer to a year out of work will set you back but you only have one father and personally I would rather deal with financial issues having spent the time with him rather then feeling guilty for leaving work or not spending enough time with my father. Find a part time job near your parents. Nannying doesn't offer much flexibility and you have very little control over your work environment.

Bethany said...

As a someone that went from school teacher to nanny I can empathize with you the worlds are so different.


As far as the things going on in your personal life your bosses might be sympathetic to your situation, but at the end of the day they need somone who cna fulfill the job they hired them to do. They always look out for themselves.

I don't want to tell you what to do, but maybe it would be better for you stress wise if you took another job closer to your home. Maybe part-time at a daycare even.
Nanying doesn't offer much flexibility, but comes with a whole lot of stress. Extra stress you don't need.

I truly wish you and your family well.

Lyn said...

I'm coming in late on this one huh?
I understand feeling uncomfortable taking the metro and having to navigate it at first. However, the PP's are right, it's one of the easiest there are to use and if you make time to "practice" you will catch on in no time.
And please ask for a new stroller, haha. You will save yourself endless headaches.

op said...

I don't know how to USE the nyc metro lol.. Just been on it with an ex!

As for quitting/staying home - I already live at home. Moved back 11 months ago. Unfortunately, I can't afford to not work, I have grad school student loans I'm paying off, along with birth control pills and a medication I take that's expensiveee without insurance (which I don't have right now but even getting private ins that'll be costly - I've had it in the past) plus, my dad would freak! He'd totally stress about my finances and I can't put any stress on him. The family knew my situation with dad before I was even hired, and if, god forbid, he does pass, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. I wouldn't expect them to hold my job if I needed an extended period off, but we have discussed my situation so they know it's a possibility. My hope is that by next year, he'll be healthy. Sigh. Then I can go back to teaching. (Also, the bone marrow won't be happening for a month or month and a half if everything goes as planned. He already was scheduled for it months but then the cancer began growing again thru chemo and they can't do it unless it's stable) for now I'm just gonna do what I have to do!

Responding to you guys' posts and thinking about some of the roots of my anxiety and frustration has been helpful. Aside from the personal stuff and things already mentioned, I wish I could share more details about my current job and the people I work for but I get super paranoid to put it out there. I do value others' opinions, whether I take the advice or not its still helpful to see other sides/povs.

Also, thank you guys who have said kind things in regards to my family. I appreciate it :)

op said...

I wish I could edit my posts! I feel bad posting again when I leave something out lol.. I need to set up a google acct!

My job at school wasn't affected greatly by my dad's illness. There were a handful of times, like the day we found out abt the diagnosis, and the day I needed a half day because we all were getting tested to find a bone marrow match. My mom, brother, and I have pretty diff schedules so once he has the transplant we'll work around work schedules so no one misses work - we have lots of family close by to help out, too, and some of my dad's close friends. I'm only worried about what will happen if the worst case scenario comes true :( otherwise I won't let it interfere with my being to work and on time. I hate missing work, actually!

Tales from the (Nanny)Hood said...

OP, I work for amazingly considerate employers, and when my dad passed away on Easter Sunday this year I was told to take the week off.

I have worked for them for 1.5 years at this point, and have had health issues of my own that required extended time off as well, and they have been nothing but gracious and accommodating.

I wish you and your family the best, and good for you for being willing to learn the metro system! Good luck with everything.

MissMannah said...

For someone who is super paranoid about talking about yourself...you sure do give a whole lot of personal information.

Phoenix said...

public transportation is offputting at times. In my city we just very recently got a light rail system. I've never been on it. The route takes you from the west side where the rapists are to the ASU campus. Basically it is a rapist transport.

We have the public bus system. I rode it once when I was little with my cousin. I was about 5 and she was 13. Some creepy man gave me some money because he had red hair too. That was scary.

Then when I got older I rode the bus twice. The frist time I wasn't wearing my wedding ring because I didn'twant to get mugged. Well that was a bad idea because most of the people riding the bus were men and instead of feeling like I was going to get mugged I felt like a piece of meat.

The second time I got smart. Wore my ring and carried my gun. But that didnt matter as aparently men don't give a hoot in you are married or not. One guy followed me off the bus and I had to call the cops on my cell phone to intercept me at a public place.

So I don't like public transportation and I would never bring kids with me.

I was always nervous I wouldn't know what to do, where I was supposed to put the money?, what if there was no place to sit?, how do I let someone know I need to get off the bus?, what if I get on the wrong one!?

it was ridiculous all my fears. Turned out my issue wouldn't be with my stupidity and ignorance on public transportation, it was with the other people riding the bus

op said...

Phoenix I'd be scared with all that going on, too!

Missmannah, its not about sharing personal info, because anyone who knew me would know it wasme by reading this. I said I don't want to share other gripes with the job on the internet because if the family somehow DID stumble across this, I wouldn't want them to see that. What I have posted, I wouldn't have issue with them seeing. But from reading other posts/comments, you seem to not have many nice things to say so I'm not surprised you'd be critical.

Tales, I'm so sorry to hear that :( I'm glad the fam you work for was accomodating and understanding! Everyone out there isn't going to just throw you out if a tragedy occurs that makes you unable to work for a short time, and your post is proof of that!

Bethany said...

It's good they know about your family situaton and are understanding of it.

They probably have a plan in place if you need to take a few days or weeks off.

ISYN is my guilty pleasure. I'd be embarrassed if my employers recognized me as well.

Fiona said...

So what was your point in posting this?

Did you just need to vent?

I can understand needing to vent, but you seem to also want to start fights by nipping at anyone who doesn't agree with you.

Fiona said...

What have you decided to do as far as the metro situation?

I'm sorry if already missed your answer to this.

Do you plan on asking your MB/DB to show you the area by metro?

ericsmom said...

Phoenix

I hate the subway near me in NYC. I only go on it with my husband. Same thing some weirdos. Then homeless people always begging for money. My sister and I went on the subway one time. A man that was homeless claimed he was really hungry, etc. We felt bad for him in a way, but scared as well. Something about him, like he would cut your throat without a thought. I gave him our leftover meal from a nice restaurant. It wasn't crap. We didn't even touch it just large portion we kept aside. I told him hear take it and leave us alone. Now you can have a nice meal from a restaurant. Even told him it wasn't touched by us. He was still looking at us crazy. Saying the food was probably blessed from the devil. I looked at my sister and was like what the hell. He did eat some and the rest he threw under the seat.

I hate subways. I belive you will usually always find trouble on them

Fiona said...

I'm sorry about your dad. I can relate to having a very sick family member andneeding to work. Saying it's tough is an understatment. I hope he gets well soon.

As far as employers go I've had some that were more generous than others.
In one situation they did end up having to let me go, and I understood that. They were wonderful people, but they had hired me as a fulltime nanny, and I wasn't able to fulllfill my end of the bargain because of my sister's illness.

It ended up being a blessing in disguise for me, because I was stretching myself too thin trying to be a wife & mom, work fulltime and care for my sister.

I found a good paying job as a Mother's Helper to a SAHM that had extremely flexible hours.

Maybe that is something you could consider if things come to that.

I'm hoping that they don't and will say a prayer for you & your dad.

Also sorry if I came across as harsh as first. I hadn't read all your replies and you seemed rather spoilt to me at first and I have no tolerance for spoiled carers.

Sorry again , and wishing you well.

Phoenix said...

yeah homeless people.

We had one that looked like Santa. My son asked me why Santa was sitting on the side of the road. I couldn't answer that.

The ones out here are interesting in the event they don't lie. I've given more money to homelss men that say, hey I'm gonna buy some beer.
There was one kid who I went and bought food for at the store. He made me very sad

GoldenStateNanny said...

I had never been to DC before, but I went with the family I work for and I had to use the metro to get around, just the baby and me. I was pretty nervous too, but after the first time, I realized it really was easy! Just try it out and you will see. I actually felt silly after because it really was so simple. Also, if you have an iPhone, there is a great app called DC Rider. You enter where you are and where you want to get to and it lays it out for you, almost like mapquest. Good luck!

MissMannah said...

Yeah, it's a damn shame my first post in this thread was perfectly nice and helpful. I've since seen that you really don't want help, so I have to chime in with Fiona and ask what was the point in your posting this?

Another one rides the bus said...

No one likes public transit, but if you live in the city or commute it's the most sensible way to go. I wish you rich car drivers would understand us poor folk don't have too many other options. It dose suck and you'll have to do like the rest of us and get over it, and get used to it if it's what the family wants. Be glad they are not asking you o ride the bus.

Bethany said...

The bus is one mode of public transit I cannot tolerate. Every single bus I have been on smells of vomit.

I can't handle it. God help me if I ever have a job requiring me to use the bus.

ericsmom said...

Yeah Phoenix

When I visited San Francisco back I think in 1998 it was so depressing. I saw alot of homeless people, alot. I tried to give as much as I had to spare. It made me feel really depressed. I was thinking of it that night when I was in the hotel. How I can afford to sleep in a comfy place and they were out in the street.

ericsmom said...

Bethany your right!! They stink for some reason. Not as bad as the little Spanish bus. They are the worse. I could never work in NYC.
First of all the traffic is a killer. If you cross over in a car from NJ to NY the toll is $12.00 (GWB)

Teacher in a Combat Zone said...

There's also an iPhone app called TBD that my brother downloaded for me (he lives in Arlington, VA). It gives you real-time information about DC Metro issues (late trains/ shut-down lines, etc), as well as traffic updates. I've definitely found it helpful- it also has a map of the entire Metro.

I've done the Metro alone with four kids (granted they were my own kids, not someone else's- an entirely different situation)-- don't sweat it, OP. I think that the DC Metro is even easier than the T in Boston and I didn't ever think that that was possible.

The biggest hassle for us when we visit him (other than the fact that he lives in a little condo and there's a lot of us) is getting from Shirlington to Pentagon City because the bus (which is really only a five-minute walk from his house) only runs every half-hour or so (if you're lucky).

The Honey Bee said...

The DC area metro really isn't that bad. Try it out. I can understand how the thought of having two kids tagging along (with a raggedy stroller) can be daunting, but I think Susannah gave you some pretty good advice regarding that. Also, if you enter on the first car of the train, the driver can see you better (they physically look out) and I doubt he/she will close the doors on you or your charges. And if you don't like the train "portion"* of the metro, you can always catch the bus...though it may take longer.

*Note to non-DC-area residents: The Metro includes both a train & bus system.

UmassSlytherin said...

I used public transportation for years. I think there is a certain kind of person who just looks down on it.

OP, I am stressed out reading all of your posts. It sounds like your life is sort of a mess.

I think if you need this job, you should suck it up and learn to take these kids on the train.

I am having a hard time understanding why you left a good job with the school system to work as a nanny. You have no health insurance now? That is not good. You can't be any help to your family if you don't have proper medical care. I think you should go back to teaching. I understand that you want to help your father, but...I still am feeling like part of the story is missing.

ericsmom said...

UMass has a point. I don't think your family would expect you to give up your life to care for a family member. I am truly sorry, I know it sounds cold. My father passed away last year he would never let me leave a good sound job no matter what. Of course its great you want to help out as much as possible. Who will take care of you though if you end up sick?

Hope your dad gets well soon. I know its a tough situation.

PeanutButter said...

OP, some people here have been less than constructive in sharing their opinions -- but you did *ask* for opinions.

It is not unreasonable for a family to expect you to take children on public transit. Although I understand that in this particular case you were surprised by the request with insufficient time to prepare yourself, now you know that you can take time to practice riding the system, and checking out the stations that you'll be likely to use.

I only spent a weekend in DC, and agree with others -- it is super simple, so if you take time to be more comfortable with the concept of the metro system, you shouldn't have any issues with taking the children.

Anonymous said...
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anon #1 said...

RE-post for Anonymous...
The D.C metro system is totally easy compared to NYC. And FYI- the parents are not trying to save on D.C. parking lol- everyone in D.C/VA uses the metro for work- Especially if you are right in D.C- the traffic is horrendous and you can kill yourself if you aren't careful or know the streets- plus they are very narrow and there are cars lined up and impacted everywhere. A lot of people take the metro to save the stress of dealing with traffic- a metro card isn't cheap though.