My 6 Weeks in Hell House

New York - This was one brutal baby-sitting job, according to a new lawsuit. A live-in nanny who watched over the daughter of a Park Avenue socialite and a celebrity surgeon claims she was scalded with boiling water, plied with drugs to increase her productivity, forced to wear sexy outfits, and pushed to attend Kabbalah classes and date her boss’ friends. Andrea Duncan, 31, says she was turned into a "virtual slave" in the $8 million Carnegie Hill apartment, all for $250 a week, plus room and board, according to a lawsuit filed Friday by her high-profile attorney Rosemary Arnold.

Working for these people was awful, Duncan said. They treated me worse than Cinderella. Duncan claims that Suzanne O’Leary, her 20-something ward, flew into an unprovoked, screaming rage in August and tossed a pot of boiling water at her, burning her abdomen, according to court papers. But socialite mom Susan O’Leary forbade the nanny from seeking medical treatment, the suit alleges. Instead she offered this advice: "Take more Adderall, drink wine and apply aloe." Susan O’Leary threatened to fire her if she didn’t keep her mouth shut about the injuries, the suit alleges. The untreated burn permanently disfigured Duncan, the Manhattan Supreme Court lawsuit says.

Suzanne O’Leary had been hospitalized for "severe emotional disorders" and had just been released from inpatient treatment when Duncan was hired, the lawsuit alleges. But Susan O’Leary never told [Duncan] that, Arnold said.

Susan O’Leary ordered the nanny to go on dates with her personal trainer and broker and to be "nice and accommodating to them" or be fired, according to the suit.

After Susan O’Leary fired her cleaning lady, she insisted Duncan pick up the slack with no extra pay for tidying the 12-room apartment, the suit says. And when O’Leary hosted cocktail parties, she wanted Duncan scantily clad in a short white shirt and black tights. She also wanted Duncan to attend Kabbalah classes with her, but the nanny, a practicing Buddhist, said no.

O’Leary eventually did fire Duncan after six weeks, and the stated reason was Duncan "exposing" herself outside the apartment, according to Arnold. But Duncan, who has since returned to Ohio, was simply wearing a loose dress so that her stomach burns did not become irritated by the fabric, the lawyer said.
Special Thanks to Ericsmom for this Submission. If you have a Nanny Horror Story you would like to share please send it in!


MissDeeOnBlackFriday said...

I am speechless. Just speechless. And here I thought being treated like crap by an employer consisted of children acting out violently, and being accused of stealing a checkbook.

Dr. Juris said...

This sounds horrible, but I have to wonder why the hell she would stay for six weeks and allow all that to happen to her. I'd take my chances on firing rather than risk an infection.

me said...

Why does a 20 something have a nanny?

Nina said...

Why does a 20-something have a nanny? Probably because her hubby has money? Or she just wants the help because it's too much for her to handle? Who knows. But I think it must be like battered wife syndrome for some of these nannies to stick it out in a home where they're so obviously being used and abused. The only other reason would be that the money was too hard to pass up? I would love to sit down with this nanny, or any other, that's been in this type of situation, and ask them the question "why?"

slb3334 said...

not the mother, the child was in her 20's. Yikes, that's a companion, not a nanny. Or should be, I guess.

♥ Amy Darling ♥ said...

This poor nanny!

I hope she wins big in court.

Please keep us posted on the outcome.

Kat said...

I wonder if the daughter is special needs, and that's why she had a Nanny.

Regardless, those people are crazy.

99centgoldearrings said...

So she was invited to a class & turned it down. She elected to be set up for a blind date. And she chose to dress sexy at their parties. She also decided to clean w/o any more pay. She chose to not seek medical care. Now she wants a payday for HER poor decisions. She knows they have money. She probably decided to sue them before she started working for them. Take some personal responsibility. Id love to be the parents lawyer.