Life Outside of Work

I know all of the health risks, and I know it is horrible but several years ago I picked up the awful habit of smoking. Recently I was discussing the topic with a friend, and realized an interesting question. Do you think it is appropriate to be a nanny who partakes in the occasional cigarette? Now I most certainly am not referencing the nanny who sneaks outside to smoke during nap time OR smokes a cigarette before work. I mean a real nanny, who would never smoke before or at work, who doesn't smell like cigarette smoke, but who may smoke as soon as she gets home. I personally think that if a nanny meets that criteria, then there is no reason to expect to dictate her life outside of work. - Anonymous


Nay The Nanny said...

I really don't know enough about this to comment with a lot of knowledge to back my comment up, but I have heard some reports recently on "third hand smoke" that do suggest someone who smokes may have harmful, lingering affects on those around them even if they do not actually smoke around others. Maybe someone else can provide more information. :)

Calanna said...

It's entirely up to the employer. If MB or DB object to a nanny who smokes in her off-hours (I'm assuming you're referring to a live-out nanny), then they won't hire her. Or, they will terminate her once they find out she smokes in her off-hours. Simple as that.

ericsmom said...

You should try and quit because you don't need a lecture its bad for you.

I really don't see how its anyones business what you do in your free time. As long as your not taking drugs, etc.

Just curious though cigarettes are addictive. Can you really go without for 8-10 hours a day? Especially,if its a stressful day or a boring day

♥ Amy Darling ♥ said...

As both a nanny and a mother, I would not hire a nanny who smoked. My mother died an early death from being a chain smoker and I do not want anything to do with smoke whatsoever.

Even if the nanny doesn't smoke on the job, she may have smoke on her clothes (third-hand smoke) or have certain health problems that would prevent her from being a healthy + energetic nanny.

Plus, who only smokes a cigarette when they get home?
Tobacco is addicting and usually people who smoke end up getting addicted to it and crave it throughout the day.

Dr. Juris said...

If you smoke, regardless of how careful you ate, you will smell like smoke, especially to nonsmokers. I agree that it's your personal life and you should be allowed to do what you want as long as it doesn't interfere with your job, but wouldn't personally hire an (even occasional) smoker, because I'm extremely sensitive to the smell. However, I don't see how it would make you an unfit nanny, aside from potentially taking more sick days, or triggering a kid's allergies or something.

RBTC said...

as an interesting aside - the nanny of prince william and prince harry - tiggy legge-bourke is an avid smoker and has mastered smoking while skiing

Unpopular opinion said...

Unpopular opinion here- I believe that a nanny should be free to do ANYTHING she wants in her spare time so long as it doesn't affect her on work hours. I am a nanny who drinks and does recreational drugs on a regular basis and it has never ever affected how much of an awesome nanny I am. I have never taken a sick day because of it, never gone to work hungover and don't drink during the week. It doesn't make untrustworthy or a bad person and just because I choose to break some laws (like smoking marijuana) that I don't believe in doesn't make me criminal with no respect for the laws that I respect- which I think is a common stereotype. I think smoking is one of these things too. Any smoker who smokes enough for it to affect her job by her being unfit or taking sick days is going to want to smoke on the job- someone who can last 8 hours without a cigarette is barely a smoker and won't have many side affects.

I know that most of you won't agree with me and that's fine- but if I were a mother I would prefer to hire someone young and energetic who had a life outside of work.

Also for the record, I have worked for a number of families in the last 4 years of nannying (I'm 23) and am honest and open with them about all aspects of my life. Things may be a little more relaxed down in this hemisphere (I have nannied in New Zealand and Australia) but the general consensus is - 'how nice it is to be young- what you do in your own time is your own business'

Oh also, some things a nanny does outside of work would affect her work like heroin, crack, methamphetamine etc. and I would never condone a nanny (or anyone) doing these things or hiring a nanny who did

Lyn said...

I don't think there is anything wrong with enjoying your time at home how you see fit. However, even if you just smoke one cigarette a day it is important that you are honest with your employers about it. Many children have asthma problems that are caused by exposure to even the slightest bit of cigarette smoke. I was one of the growing up.

So be honest, do your best to make sure you are smoke free for work, and please keep an eye out for any reactions to you the children have.

ericsmom said...

Well theres worse things we are exposed to in this world. Like radiation and pesticides in our food.

I won't put a nosepin on my nose if I pass by a smoker. : )

BrooklynMomma said...

I smoked for 12 years, and worked as a teacher for ten of those years. I never smoked during work hours, and never craved it while at work so all my smoking was during my time. While I personally don't see it as a big deal, once I stopped smoking I realized that the whole time when I *swore* I didn't smell like smoke, I actually reeked! I couldn't tell 'cause I was so used to the smell that I was convinced I smelled a-ok. Truth was, my coat reeked and so did my hair. So while its certainly not your boss' business, you may want to consider being upfront about it before they bring it up 'cause they smelled it on you. And like a PP mentioned, some children may be sensitive to the smoke smell.

MissMannah said...

Well said Unpopular opinion! I, for one, completely agree with you. Back in my younger days, I was a drinking, pot-smoking caregiver. In fact, one daycare I worked at, I'd say almost every employee smoked (cigarettes). With my first family, I would often take the baby monitor with me into my car and sneak my mid-day cigarette. The family may or may not have known I was a smoker, I don't really care. They never said anything and I worked for them for almost 2 years. I quit smoking (everything) about 4 years ago and I rarely drink now.

I'm rambling. To sum up, as long as you don't do it in front of the kids, there should not be a problem.

Anonymous said...
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Student Nanny said...

I think this is a very slippery slope with regard to how much say an employer has in their employee's life. Smoking (cigarettes) is not illegal. Unhealthy sure, but not illegal. But there are plenty of other unhealthy habits someone might indulge in in their time off work. Yet most employers would never dream of trying to regulate things such as a nanny's diet or hobbies, which have the potential to be equally as unhealthy.

(and this is coming from an avid non-smoker whose grandmother died of lung cancer)

RBTC said...

i am going to throw out some uncomfortable ideas here

we ARE living in orwell's 1984

potential employers can and will find out anything private they want and make decisions on it.

everything such as your driving record,credit rating, amount of debt you owe,medical preconditions, if you have kids, if you are pregnant, info on your facebook page, what you eat, what you drink, if you smoke

some employers make decisions on those things( because it may in fact affect their bottom line ) and you may never know it.

there is no privacy anymore

Anonymous said...
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RBTC said...

well said.

i run a business and you virtually cannot run a business without facebook, but i keep it low key

also - i have to say that facebook has it's values for those of us who are older 40's and beyond - you can keep in touch with your friends that you cannot see every day
but - it has a very dark side that emerges day to day

you are wise to be wary

Anonymous said...

As a nursing student I will tell you that the majority of nurses smoke. I'm not sure why, but they do. On their breaks they smoke a cigarette and then come in to care for you. Do you smell it on them? I don't think I can ever remember smelling a nurse who has cared for me. They aren't smoking in the room and therefore we would all find it ridiculous to say that they can't smoke. I kind of consider it to be the same way as a nanny, if she doesn't smoke with the children, at all during the day with her children, or smell like it, I don't feel it's right to decree that she doesn't smoke on her own time

Future nurse

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

My doctor says that if I smoke once every 2 weeks or less I am a non-smoker. I am a non-smoker.