CL-WTF too Close to Home

I started with a family making $10hr six months ago. At first I just cleaned, shopped, ran errands, and cooked dinner. Occasionally, I picked up the boys, aged 2 and 5. At first, it was a pretty easy job. Over the summer, I watched the boys twice a week, all day... from 7:30 - 5:30 or 6:00. It just so happens I worked Fourth of July and my Birthday. One day, I needed to leave early, but early ended up being 5:00. I have taken one sick day - it was one of those days you are so sick you can't be more than 10 feet from your bathroom. Unavoidable. THEY are consistently home late or at different times - so confused because they originally wrote down 5pm for my hours.

When the school year started, I began picking up the 2yo at 12:30 from daycare, and meeting 5yo at the bus. If there is a late start or no school, they expect me to do childcare. I am having a hard time keeping up with laundry and housekeeping. When I have children, I feel it necessary to watch them closely. The 5yo can be rather mean. On occasions he has teased me for being fat, having a fat butt, and told me he'd have me fired, and that I get paid to clean up after him. He also tells me things like I hate you, never come back, and your big and stupid. Once he told me he wanted to chop me up and hide my body in a ditch and tell people I went home. Basically, I know I should just quit, but I love the 2yo, and feel I am getting through to the 5yo. How should I re-visit my arrangement with the parents. I just had my 6 month anniversary. Or, do I just walk away? And if so, what's the best way to do that without hurting the kids? I feel like my job description is one of your CL-WTF ads! Thanks! - Lizzie Listener


ericsmom said...

Wow, not normal for a five year old to say that he wants to chop you up and put your body in a ditch. That was shocking to read. This kid needs help. Did you tell the parents what he said to you? He may need counseling in my opinion. Sure its normal for them to be somewhat resentful missing their parents. Not okay to make a statement like that.

Start looking for another position where the parents respect you and the kids. The parents do not respect you by always coming home whenever they feel like it. If they pulled this crap in a daycare they first would usually be fined $1.00 for every minute they are late. Then if they are over an hour late there is a 800 number from the state they call for child abandonment

ericsmom said...

opps sorry for my spelling!!

EastBay Nanny said...

This situation is no good. You are allowing yourself to be treated very badly and your employers are taking advantage of you. This kiddo is very very angry. When you say you think you're getting through to him what do you mean specifically? What have you tried and have the parents helped work with you ? Do they know about what he said to you and what was their response? It's a red flag that this boy would say such a thing to an adult. If he is watching horror movies he's been gravy damaged already.

One of the most troubled kids I've ever worked with would watch Chucky movies and tell me about it. When I was enforcing the rules with him he would say "I want to chop your head off. I'm Chucky and I'm going to hurt you.". The scariest part for me was that he was only 4 and he was still figuring out how to draw the line between what is real on tv and what is pretend. I think he believed that he had the power to do such a thing. This was no small matter. This was a potential psychopath in the making.

Lyn said...

Geez! I'm sure by now you know your rate is FAR to low! Although, to deal with this kind of abuse (and it is abuse) $50 an hour would be too low. This is one of those situations where you give the parents one warning "this is what your oldest son said to me today. I dealt with it at the time and expect you to discuss this with him again tonight. Also, I count on you being home when you tell me you will be because I line up other jobs based on the schedule you give me and cannot be late for them. Perhaps you should add an extra hour to each night to account for traffic and whatnot." Next time either happens, buh-bye! You don't need to look for an excuse to leave Sugar. You have every possible one and no one will blame you. If I were you I'd run away. Not walk. But if you are dependent on this income then give a warning first. I'm so sorry you have to deal with this.

EastBay Nanny said...

I have no idea about your little guy and what his short life has looked like. The backstory on the child I mention was intense. I'm not saying that all kids who watch scary movies are being trained to kill. I'm saying the biggest flag in your OP is what this boy said to you. The fact that you're paid an unacceptable wage and that the parents are jerks is secondary IMO

♥ Amy Darling ♥ said...

OP, what this child said to you is not normal at all and should not be taken lightly.
I would have a serious talk with both the child and his parents.
Let them know in no uncertain terms will you tolerate being talked to like this. JUST ONE more time and you will be out the door with no notice whatsoever. This child may or may not be acting out, but he needs to be taught that this type of language is not going to be tolerated.

I understand your love for the younger child, however for all you do you are being grossly underpaid my Friend. You are not only a nanny to two children (one who sounds very difficult), you also are a maid, cook and house manager. For all your responsibilities, you are making peanuts.

Your family is taking full advantage of you and is getting a great deal from you.

I would either ask for a large raise or move on.

Melanie Raye Castor said...

If I were in your position, I would choose to leave as quickly as possible. You are being disrespected by both the 5yo and the parents. That is not okay.

All power to you, OP.

Anonymous said...
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MaryPoppin'Pills said...


It is not her name... it is a moniker.

I would never Publish someone's first and last name unless given express permission to do so.

Anonymous said...
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Lizzie Listener said...

Had an awful incident at the workplace today, and I quit in an e-mail when I got home. I realize that was totally unprofessional, and I've made BM really angry, she is holding my pay. I don't really care about the money, but I now know that I was right, and they're not nice people.

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Lizzie Listener said...

Went to work and no one told me that dad was home with the 2yo, who had stomach flu. Rough start getting puked on.

5yo came home, wanted to play. I'm wet from washing puke, but I go out with him to supervise, stop him from playing with snakes. He wants to come in and bring his friends, I think the basement is fine. Dad kicks us out.

5yo asks to go to the neighbor's house and Dad says ok, he can go, I can stay. I decide to go with. While there, kid busts his head wide open. No one came to our aid, and there was blood everywhere. I was hollering for help, got him up, hollered some more, and cleaned him up with toilet paper in the bathroom and got him home.

Dad made some phone calls, instead of getting me bandaids I asked for, I applied ice pack and comforted the guy.

I stayed with 2yo while Dad went to urgent care - mom could not be reached - mom texts me and I tell her to of course go to the hospital - baby is fine with me -

I have everything clean, all laundry done, dinner ready, and made some jello for the weekend. In all this time, no neighbors come over, nor the boys.

When I leave, I see neighbor, and he wants to talk to me, and I'm just not ready, say no - I have nothing to say, I really can't talk right now - I'm so mad that he didn't hear me needing help with this child in HIS house, where several other 5 yo's are playing unsupervised.

I sent an email quitting, and boss lady is SO LIVID. She is withholding money to pay for the payroll system they just set up - they hadn't wanted to pay me legally. She is holding all pay until she figures things out. She said it was good I quit, because I was juvenile with the neighbor.

If it was my kid and that happened, I'd have been APE on the neighbor!!! Not his fault at all that the boy was hurt, it was an accident, but to not hear the child screaming bloody murder, or the nanny yelling, "Please help, I need towels and ice, XXX is hurt, please help."

So glad to be done, not sure what will happen with the pay, feel bad to quit this way but emotionally could not handle going back another day.

Thanks SO much for listening, you guys have been great.

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Future Nurse :) said...

Lizzie, I'm no expert but I feel PRETTY confident that as long as you are paid legally you can get that money. Let them know you are going to seek counsel (just say that, don't threaten with lawyers!) in order to deal with this issue, as you are owed for time paid. I wouldn't worry about ticking them off, because as long as you have documentation nothing will happen, plus sounds like this will not be a reference anyway. I am SO SORRY for you dealing with this, you didn't deserve that crap. Sometimes it takes a really bad one to learn how to improve though, so just make sure to remember in interviews that YOU are interviewing THEM just as much as they are interviewing you. Ugh what a $*%($. I'm disgusted for you by their actions, but SO VERY PROUD of you for yours :)

Lizzie Listener said...

It's not about the money.
I am glad to be gone.
While I'm not shocked by her reaction, I am still disappointed, and GLAD I did not give notice if she was mad at me, vs. husband or neighbor. Husband - for letting him go play by himself (I insisted on going to supervise) or neighbor - for not properly supervising his children and other kids that were over. If you can't hear a child screaming like a banshee and a grown woman shouting "I need help" - you are NOT paying attention to your children.
I just can't get over the fact that she was upset with me for not wanting to talk to the neighbor while I was still getting over the trauma!

Mrs. Billy Lamar said...

@Lizzie, I commend you for leaving without giving notice.

There's no way I could stay one day in the job you described.

I is not an issue here.

Just let these toxic people out of your life Dear and move on.

I pity the next girl that works for these idiots.

Anonymous said...
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Ok said...

Why are Caring Moms post removed. What has she done ? Also. Next time OP instead of working for people who treat you like crap.
Stop justifying why you're staying. For your own health and respect. Grow a back bone.

MissMannah said...

She removed them herself, it was her own choice.

Anonymous said...

Miss Lizzie. Have you heard from them or requested the pay you earned?

Your story was disturbing. Anything could've happened. Thank G_d you were there to look out for the kids while the parents did who knows what.

Lizzie Listener said...

After receiving some angry e-mails and texts, I got an e-mail that said the check was written and mailed, but there was no mail yesterday - maybe some time later this week.

In retrospect, I wish I would have put my foot down in the beginning, when things started happening. I regret letting things get to a state of panic, and quitting without notice.

I miss my routine, and I miss the littler guy. I am enjoying being home, and I am doing some part time work for some very beloved, well behaved kids that belong to some grateful, kind parents.

I don't even know what to do with myself, it's just childcare. I'm so much more relaxed. I'll never take another Nanny Who Does It All job - even IF the money is good.

Looking forward to those last two checks. Thanks to all for listening, for the good advice, you are the best.