28 May, 2012

Washington DC, Blue Line Metro, Smithsonian stop

bad nanny sighting 5
Washington DC, blue line Metro, at the Smithsonian stop -- 3 Hispanic nannies, all waiting for the elevator to go up to street level from train. All had shoulder length or a little longer brown hair. One had shorts and red converse sneakers and a baby girl was her charge... it was hard to tell the age because she was reclined in the stroller sleeping. Another nanny was wearing a purple t-shirt and jeans and was a little heavier set. Her charge was a little blonde boy, maybe a year and a half or 2 years old, in a red stroller. The third nanny had 2 charges, one baby girl in the front of the stroller and a 3 or 4 year old boy sitting facing the nanny, on the back of the stroller.

They were all speaking to one another in Spanish when the baby girl in the front of the stroller was sitting facing the wall and started to cry. All three nannies seemed instantly annoyed and rolled their eyes then directed their attention to her and immediately started laughing and mocking the girl's crying. The nanny of the one little boy had a snack bag with apple slices and began taunting the crying baby with them.... when the girl reached for an apple slice the nanny snatched it away, making the girl cry harder and all the nannies continued to laugh. The elevator opened and they all squeezed in and went up so that was the last I saw of them. It just made me really sad for the little girl... maybe they thought it was funny, but being a witness I did not think it was funny whatsoever. I just think it's cruel to taunt a crying child... there was no softness about these nannies.

Sticky Situation Started with a PB Sandwich

rant 1
Hi all, I have an amazing story to share. I do not need advice as I told this Mother to take her 'job' and shove it!! Well maybe not in those words! Hehehe, which I know was the right thing to do. So the story goes - I started a new job for a family (who were friends with my much loved previous family) working 1.5 days per week. The other 3.5 I go to University.

When I had the interview they told me that I was to bring my own food and snacks as their previous Nanny "would eat all of their food". I said fine as I like to eat pretty healthy so I have packed my lunch in the past but also on the odd occasion I have eaten at previous houses for lunch. But I agreed because, whats the big deal?!? Anyway last week I was sitting in a lecture when my phone rang, it was MB. I let it ring out but it rang again 2 seconds later. I decided to excuse myself and take the call as I was worried something serious had happened. MB begged me to please please go and pick the little girl up from daycare as she was very sick and MB and DB could not possibly make it home that day. Stupid me I agreed and left Uni to rush and get the little girl.

I always buy lunch at Uni as I had no food with me but rushed to get their child and by the time we got back home (1.45pm) I was starving. I had second thoughts but decided that as I had not had lunch I would just make myself a PB sandwich... I also later had a bag of trail mix as MB was running late and arrived home at 7pm. The next morning was my work day for them and as I arrived home both MB and DB were there waiting! They put the TV on for the kids and told me we needed to chat... my mind raced and I thought of a million reasons why, but eating a sandwich and a bag of nuts did not cross my mind!!

The MB told me that they were very angry as they had a suspicion that I had been eating their food!!! I told them what I had eaten the day before and explained why. They told me that their "rules" were never to be broken and that I had pushed their trust, that I must remember that I am not a family member and that I cannot just help myself to whatever I felt like eating and that they would now consider a Nanny cam to ensure I did not "take" food again... I asked if there was anything that was actually the problem and they were using this to bring it up. They told me NO and that in their eyes a lie is a lie and being sneaky is being sneaky. It didn't matter how good I was with the kids, a liar is a liar. Well I stood up, told them that I would give them $3 to cover the cost of my food, calmly took the money out of my wallet, gave it to DB and left the house. They both tried to stop me and said I was over reacting. I told them that I would no longer be able to help them as it is clear to me that we have vastly different values.

Anyway I was asked by my ex boss what happened as she had found out via the daycare that I was no longer helping out so I told her the truth. She was shocked and said to me that I had most certainly done the right thing. Anyway, have any other nannies had such crazy things going on???

27 May, 2012

Dejected and Disconnected

opinion 1
Let me start with some background. I am a 20 year old college student with no previous nanny experience (although many years of babysitting and child care experience). I accepted a position in April 2011 that started Sept of 2011. Over the summer I watched the girls about five times and immediately connected with the whole family. I was really excited to start going every week. About three weeks before I was going to start, the Mom emailed me and let me know that they will now need someone Mondays and Wednesdays, as well as Fridays and asked if I knew someone willing to work just the other two days so I could still care for the girls on Fridays. Then about a week before I was set to start, she emailed me again and said that they found someone else to watch the girls but they would need all three days, including my Fridays, but that I could still do occasional babysitting. I was so crushed. I was already so attached to the three girls and was looking forward to caring for them every week.

After that, I was desperate for a job and accepted a position with my current family in Sept. At the time of the interview, I didn’t really feel the same connection as I did with the first family but I just thought the bond would come with time. “G” is 5 and “J” is 2 and both are really great kids, very well behaved and I have never had to discipline or have either of the kids take a time out. With that being said, I have been with them for about 8 months and I still do not feel connected with the kids or the parents. The parents are great and are so nice and genuine but I just don’t feel a bond with anyone in the family. I guess I am just wondering if anyone else has run into this problem or if I am alone in this. And if anyone has any advice that would be welcome too!

Keeping in Touch... with Reality

opinion 1
I have been working as a part time babysitter (about 15 hours/week) for an amazing family for the past 2 years. Both the kids (11, 6) and the parents are great. In 2 years we have never had an issue. They've always been very sweet and respectful. I've obviously grown quite attached to them, and the kids are attached to me as well.

I am unfortunately leaving in a few weeks because I got a full-time job in my field. I am really sad that they won't be a part of my daily life anymore. They say that they will miss me a lot, and that we'll stay in touch and see each other all the time. What has your experience been with this? It may be different because I am not a career nanny so I don't have several families to keep up with, but I'm still interested to hear other experiences. We are all really close and I know they care about me, but I am willing to be realistic here. They are a busy family. Do you think we will actually stay in touch?

Time For Reflection

opinion 1
When are kids typically too old for time-out? I am a 26 year old nanny for 4 little girls ages 2, 4, 8, and 11 and I have the youngest 3 sit in the corner or on the steps for time-out; and I have the 11 year old sit at the dining room table for alone time. (Kind of like the reflection room technique on super nanny). I think I'm going to start using the reflection room instead of time out for the 8 year old when she turns 9, because I kind of feel like 9 is the maximum age that time outs actually phase a kid. What do you think?

Burning the Candle at Both Ends

opinion 1
How do you prevent nanny burnout? What do you do when you feel yourself starting to become worn thin?

Experienced Employers

opinion 1
Do former nannies make good employers? My friend, also a nanny, and I think that more often than not they don't.

Lonely in L.A.

Hello all! I am a new East Coast transplant and have been working as a full time nanny for an amazing family since the week I arrived. They live in the Santa Monica vicinity and have an absolutely adorable 8 month old girl. So far, the job has been nearly perfect. I am bonding with the baby and totally adore her and her parents are treating me really well. I feel like a part of the family already. My only problem is this: back in my home town I never had a problem finding other nannies and even mommies to do play-dates with. I had a tight knit group of girls and we were very close, as were the children. We would throw parties for the kid, go to lunch with them, museums, swimming, you name it. It was wonderful socialization for everyone and the days just flew by. My issue is that now that I'm in a brand new place all the way across the country, I am finding it kind of difficult to meet other full time nannies who are receptive to play-dates. I am finding it harder to approach people here for whatever reason; it seems that nannies/moms are kind of clicky in some of the areas we visit and striking up conversation is nearly impossible. I would love to have play-dates and start up a nanny group here. If anyone else is in the West LA area and would like to get together with a sweet baby girl and her nanny, please let me know! Thanks!

Multiple Blessings

opinion 1
Any nannies here certified as a Newborn Care Specialist, Childbirth Educator, or Breastfeeding Counselor or Doula? My plan is to expand on my nanny career, by first becoming a Newborn Care Specialist and then moving into the other areas. I hope to open something like a mother/baby learning center providing a variety of services. Right now I plan to do the Newborn Care Specialist through Multiple Blessings. Has anybody gone through training through them? If so how did you like it? Was it helpful in landing jobs? For the other careers what training program did you go through? I’ve heard of CAPPA and CBI, and would like to know if anyone has experience with these programs. Please feel free to add any other information you think is related and helpful.
appropriate
Hilariously inappropriate playground equipment!

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Readers: I have almost 20 Submissions waiting to be Published. Please feel welcome to continue commenting on the other Posts... even if they end up falling on the 2nd page. Thank you to those sending me e-mails, I truly appreciate your patience! ~ MPP

25 May, 2012

Sayville Public Library - NY

bad nanny sighting 5
I've seen this nanny for about 3 years on and off with various charges. Yesterday however, was the last straw. This nanny is about 28-35, about 5'4, with shoulder length brown wavy hair. She is typically dressed in baggy jeans and jersey like tops. Her charges vary between a boy with long blonde hair, a little boy about 2 with short dark hair, and another little boy about 4, also with blonde hair. She plops her charges on the computer and sits on her phone for hours. I've seen her charges ask for help many times only to be ignored.

Yesterday she was with a little boy which I assume to be about 3 years old. He had dirty blonde hair and was wearing a blue dinosaur shirt. He didn't know how to play the Elmo computer game and was not very interested by it in the first place and asked repeatedly to get up and play with the puppet basket and stage. This nanny ignored him completely and when he went to get up from his seat, she stood up behind him and blocked him in! This boy literally sat there staring blankly at the computer screen for about 20 minutes. He eventually said he wanted to leave, began to cry, and finally she picked him up and left in a huff. If this was an isolated incident I may have brushed it off as a very bad "off" day for the nanny, but I have seen her do this many times, with many children.

24 May, 2012

New Acronym: SAHP = Stay Away from Home Please!

opinion 1
I work 3 long days a week for one family, and I used to work one day a week with another family. When I started with the one-day-a-weekers, the dad was always at work and the mom always left to go to the gym or shopping or out with friends. It was great, she came home on time, the kids were sweet, and I got along with both parents.

However, as time passed, she started staying home more and more. Sometimes she and her husband were both home. I am one of those nannies who absolutely hates it when a parent is at home. I don't want to start a debate about that, I know that SAHPs are great for some nannies, but not for me. I purposely do not accept any job where the parent is at home, and I feel that everyone should have the right to make that choice. I feel like that choice was taken away from me. The mom never told me when she would be home or asked if I was ok with that. I don't think she was trying to be sneaky or anything, I think it just didn't occur to her that a nanny might have an issue with that. I finally told her I couldn't do the once a week job anymore, because my other family needed me more. (I don't enjoy lying, but what could I say?) The mom asked if there was anything that would make me stay, but I didn't know how to tell her I felt uncomfortable when she stays home. I told them to still call me for occasional jobs. When they ask for an evening job, I always take it because they always go out if it's evening. They have called several times for afternoon jobs, and about half the time, the mom stays home. I have no way to find out beforehand if she will be home or not, and this would be the deciding factor in whether or not I take the job.

She called this morning and asked if I can let her know what days I have available in June and July. She and the kids like me a lot and want me to work for them as much as possible. I am glad they like me, and I like them too, but I really can't stand working there when she is home. I can't think of any way to be honest about this without insulting her. She is super nice, I have nothing at all against her personally, I am uncomfortable with ANY parent staying at home. I like playing with these kids, I have the time, and I would like the extra money, but it isn't worth it for me if she is at home. Should I try to explain and risk them getting angry or insulted, or just lie again and say I am too busy?

Equal Exchange

opinion 1
The mom I work for and have been working for for almost 2 years loves to trade hours. It was fine for a while... Id come in early during the week in trade for my 4hr work day (Friday) off. But lately she has been really holding hours over my head. For example the other week she let me go at her discretion an hour early... Then the next week when she went to write me a check for the overnight I had just done she reminded me of the hour from the previous week and said she had factored that into my pay. This morning she came into work and had a suggestion for us to try because her and her husband were taking the kids on some extra vacations (they are gone next week and were gone for 2 days a few weeks ago) she thinks that I should owe them a few date nights for the extra time off. I'm starting to feel a little taken advantage of. I mean, if they had their kids in daycare and went on a vacation the daycare wouldn't refund them their money for those days.. Right? Help.

DC Sightsee

opinion 1
DC nannies: I don't live in DC but am traveling there for a week...my MB has to go for work so I'm going along with the baby...what are some baby friendly places or things I can do? He is 12 months old.

23 May, 2012

Big Sister's Burden

opinion 1
I have a problem and don;t know any adult I can trust to help me with this. I'm 14 and have 2 sisters that are 4 and 7 years old. My mom is a single mom and works alot of hours so we have a nanny. We all like her very much. But heres my problem: a couple of nights ago I caught our nanny going through my moms drawers (she doesn't know I know). Now, I don't know if she took anything or not but all the same I know it was wrong for her to be going through my moms things. I'm not sure if I should talk to my mom about it because it would really upset her. She's stressed enough with work. I also know she likes our nanny very much but I'm afraid, what if she fires her? I don't know what to do. I don't want a new nanny, but I don't want her thinking its ok to go through my moms personal things (me and my sisters aren't allowed to go in my moms room, either). Please tell me what I should do?

Career Sphere

opinion 1
A recent post about nanny school and degrees and certificates has me thinking about non-nanny careers that my fellow nannies are interested in. If you attended college what is your degree in? How did you become a nanny? Did you have another career before entering the nanny field? Do you see yourself as a career nanny or do you have other plans? If you have other plans what career are you considering? My degree is in biology. I worked labs for awhile and ended taking a job as a science educator. While working as an educator I discovered I enjoyed working with kids so made the switch to daycare and became a certified teacher. After a few years in I decided to try working as a nanny. I've enjoyed my time as a nanny, but I don't believe I am meant to be a career nanny. However being a nanny has allowed me to discover my true calling (midwifery). I start school in 2013.

Opinions on Preference

opinion 1
Sittercity or Care? I am an employer and curious about nannies and sitters' opinions on the positives and negatives of both of these sites. Which do you prefer and why? Where do you live and which gets you more job options? I am curious about both the overall nanny perception of the sites and if there is a geographic preference. No need to compare to agencies or CL unless you desire. Thanks.

5,4,3,2,1

opinion 1
What do you consider a toddler? It seems like the age gets extended every year. When I started out in childcare toddlerhood ended when a kid turned 3. Then it included 3. Now I see 4 year olds being called toddlers. Sometimes 5 year olds . What is going on?
a day in the life 3
I am a nanny on call, for when the mom has trips and goes out of town. Anyway, here is a day in my life for 2 year old A and 3 year old C.

9:00pm Saturday Night - I arrive and the kids are already asleep, I talk to MB as she finishes getting dressed and packed.
9:30pm - She says goodbye and tells me anything pertaining to the kids that I might need to know for the night and next day.
10:00-10:45pm - I watch a tv show. I love coming here because I get to catch up on a few shows when the kids are asleep, I don’t have cable at my house :)
11pm -Time for me to sleep, have to be up with the kids in the morning.
7am - A is awake. He needs a diaper change and we head downstairs for breakfast, he is in an extremely good mood this morning!
7:30 - C comes downstairs, she is whiny because we left her by herself upstairs sleeping. I made eggs and toast for her also.
7:40-8 - We eat and talk about what the kids have been doing recently. I hear all about the new neighbors!
8-8:20 - The kids and I color and put stickers on their coloring pages. They love this!
8:20-8:50 - I put on “Curious George” for the kids to watch. I am going to get dressed so that we can all go to church.Their mom loves that I get to bring them even when she is not home.
8:50-9:20 - I am ready and begin getting the kids ready. Teeth brushed and dressed. C fusses because she doesn’t like the dress her mom left out for her, but she puts it on eventually. A never complains :)
9:20-9:30 - I make sure we have enough diapers, extra clothes, snacks, etc., and we load up into my car to go to church.
9:30-10:00 - We make the trip to church. C begs for me to play her favorite song, Footloose, and we listen to it 3 times on the way there. She loves it!
10-10:45 - I go into the preschool sunday school class with the kids. They don’t like for me to leave them, so I make sure that they are comfortable and wait for them to warm up to the teachers.
10:45-11:45 - I go into big church. A sometimes comes in with me and did today. He fell asleep after the songs.
11:45-12:45 - Great! There is food at church today. We eat at a big table with my family and friends.
12:45-1:15 - We head back home. Of course, we have to listen to Footloose again on the way there.
1:15-3 - The kids fell asleep in the car. I quietly bring them up to their beds and go back downstairs. I clean up the dishes from breakfast and tidy up the house. I catch some tv in the spare time before the children wake up.
3:00 - Both kids are awake! We cuddle for a while and talk.
3:15-5:15 - We head outside and ride bikes/take a walk/chalk on the sidewalk.
5:15-6:00 - We go inside and I begin making dinner. They are begging for spaghetti. C and A both help me make our food.
6:00-6:30 - We eat and talk at the table.
6:30-7:30 - We head back outside for another walk. We play in the sand and the kids are so dirty, which means we are all having tons of fun!
7:30-We head inside, both C and A whine about it getting dark outside.
7:35-8:05 - Bath time! They love bath time and getting to draw pictures on the wall with their bath markers.
8:05-8:30 - We read books and play quietly.
8:30- Bed time! These kids are worn out! Once they are both in bed I head downstairs.
8:30-9:30 - I go downstairs and tidy up. I also do a load of laundry.
9:30- Mom is home! She thanks me and pays me. Time for me to head home!

21 May, 2012

Update: Manipulative Nightmare

opinion 1
Hi, I am the OP from the recent post Manipulative Nightmare. I just want to say thank you so much to everyone who gave me advice on my situation. I appreciate that so many of you gave me advice for what I should do if I stay and also the kind words for if I decide to leave the position.

I decided to try some of the advice that was given, including ignoring rude behavior/tone/words, telling K that I did not want to play when he was acting that way, responding with a positive about whatever negative he said- for example, the parking thing: when he would complain about where I would park I would just say "Oh I think this parking spot is just great. Look how close we are" etc. I also tried positive reinforcement reward system that seemed to work, however I could tell by Friday he was growing bored of it.

To sum up the week, it was better than how it had been, there was some small progress, however I continue to feel that this is not a good fit for me and that this is not a position that I am going to be happy in long-term. I have decided that I would like to leave. On one hand, I feel guilty, selfish, like a bad nanny, and lazy for not "sticking with it" and waiting it out to see if it gets better. On the other hand, I find it a disservice to everyone involved for me to stay when my heart is not in it, I know that my happiness and well-being should be my first priority, and I know how happy I have been in past jobs where I have a great relationship with the child(ren). In my position before this, I worked with a child who would have frequent tantrums and meltdowns, but we had such a great relationship that I could deal with her bad behavior and was always really motivated to help her to express herself in better ways.

So, now that I have made up my mind, I am asking for advice once more. I want to know how you guys think I should approach giving notice. I am terrified because I have never left a job on bad terms and how exactly do you tell someone you are leaving when it is because you don't want to work with their child? The parents are great, and K is not a bad kid by any means... he is difficult yet he is a great kid. It is just simply not a good fit and I want to be respectful in my delivery of the news that I am leaving. How should I go about this?

Calling it a Day

opinion 1
What would you do? I’m a nanny, I work days totaling 35 hours a week with one family and work evenings with another family 3 days a week. I like both families, but feel more of a bond with the morning family. They are good people. I took the second job because I needed to make more money for various reasons. Everything is on the books and both families know I’m working for another family.The second family has offered me more working hours. I would be working 40 hours for them instead of 15 weekly and days instead of evenings. They have offered to double my total take home income from both families.The extra money would help a lot, and the commute would be closer so I would save on gas. I’m just not 100% sold on leaving family number one.

Adventures in Advertising

opinion 1
Nannies, what do you look for in a job ad from parents? What attracts you in an ad? What puts you off in an ad?

What's in a Name?

opinion 1
What is it with the large number of people on CL advertising themselves as nannies. When they are an in-home daycare? I sometimes wish that nanny was a protected title. It's tough when anyone and everyone can call themselves a nanny.

Elimination Communication

opinion 1
Has anyone here tried or worked with a family that uses Elimination Communication? This is new to me and I want to know if any nannies have experienced toilet training in this manner.

Rhode Island Resident

opinion 1
I’m strongly thinking of moving to the east coast in the next few months (probably by September). I would be moving to the Providence, RI area. The suburbs of Providence. Can anyone tell me of good agencies in the area and the going rate for someone with 4 years of child care experience as a nanny for infants including multiples? I’d also take suggestions on places to live.

18 May, 2012

MB's OCD is Making Job Difficult

opinion 1
I have been employed by a wonderful family for nearly a year and we have a good relationship. I love their kids and the parents are very fair and generous. My contract is specifically childcare only and for the most part they respect that, with a few exceptions, which I am for the most part okay with because they compensate me over our contract by rounding up paychecks, etc. (I realize others have different and strong opinions about this, but this is what works in my situation).

My question is regarding MB. I have began to realize she is OCD about cleaning the house, and having things done "her way". I respect all of this, because it's her house and I do find her to be a very warm person and good employer, and know she's only human, but I also feel the expectations are a bit unclear. It is starting to feel like no matter how happy the children are, I just can't get the other things right. I'm just not sure how to even bring it up. Also, she seldom brings the issues up directly, but rather leaves me notes that I have found a little patronizing. I feel I should address this but am at a loss for words. For instance, she has asked me to keep the house tidier. Things like missing a mark on the counter which I would think would go completely unnoticed or be a forgivable offense are HUGE to her. There have been times I will be cleaning the kitchen and she will come home and immediately drop everything to clean a spot I missed or have not gotten to yet. I tried to lighten the mood, but she seemed visibly irritated at me. The day after this particular instance, I arrived to their house to find a note that said, "Please wipe down ALL counters after dinner." I thought it was belittling to specifically spell this out, considering I was not hired based on my cleaning abilities and I do clean up after dinner.

Another thing is that after I was hired, she casually said "it'd be great" if I could take out the garbage/recycling/compost every night. I said that was fine, but was a little irritated this was slipped in after negotiation. This has not been the beginning of "nanny creep" so I am not too worried about the garbage duty. I don't really mind, except when I am criticized for it--one time I did not empty the garbage when there were three things in there (I am not exaggerating, every night means EVERY night) and was left a note that said "Please empty the garbage EVERY night", other times something was found in the garbage that should have been recycling and I am left a note or sent an email that says "we really value recycling, for example, a chip bag in the garbage could be recycled", etc... I don't mind doing these things, but it seems as if I just can't ever do them right. One thing they like to do is wash plastic bags before recycling them. Once MB opened the recycling, pulled out the plastic bags I had washed and rewashed them. Another time, instead of making a sandwich for the children's lunch, the kids asked me to put some dinner left overs in their lunch for the next day. It would need to be heated in the morning. They are older and I know there is a conversation about lunch in the mornings with MB even though I make the school lunches. On this particular day, I guess MB did not ask the children, just saw that there was no sandwich in the lunches and left another note saying, "Please make a FULL lunch including sandwich. Thanks." Afterward I explained to her why I had not included a sandwich and apologized for the lack of communication from me but she didn't have much of a response to that and it seemed to be a big deal.

I definitely feel I want to address these things, but can't think of how to go about it in a way that is tactful, professional and direct. I realize I posted very negative things about MB, but the positives far outweigh this. I think it is just a personality difference I am not really accustomed to. I am a responsible person but not incredibly tedious or tidy, and she seems to be extremely. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Nanny Left Scratching her Noggin After Mom's Ultimatum

opinion 1
I just had a first in the nanny world. I have been a full time live out nanny for almost six years for several different families. I was two months hired by a family who was looking for part time (12-15 hours a month) for the occasional date night and just so mom could get some things done during the day. They knew I was already working full time for someone else and agreed to work around my current schedule.

I was scheduled to work a few days ago and showed up on time even though I wasn’t feeling that great. Nothing major I just had a cough and felt a little achy. As every nanny knows we go to work even when we feel like death as there is usually no one to cover for us, and many nannies have been fired over this. I didn’t feel awful but the mom apologized for me having to come in and said she would run some errands and then let me go for the day. I told her that wasn’t necessary but she insisted. She came back an hour later paid me and I went home. She then called me the next day and told me that my coming to work sick was a sign of “poor judgment” and she couldn’t have someone who couldn’t use good judgment around her kids and they were going to have to let me go. I am still scratching my head over this one. A part of me is kinda glad because although she seemed pretty normal, if she is willing to fire a great nanny because she actually showed up for her shift on time, who knows what other problems might have arose. Has anybody else had this happen?

Two Sides of the Same Coin

opinion 1
Question A: How do you nannies deal with a child calling you mommy and saying they wished you were their mom? This is my first gig and I've never been in this situation before. The kids only 3 so I don't want to crush her but I want to make sure I'm being respectful of mom too.  

Question B: Do you ever imagine you are your charges mother? I cannot be alone in this. I'm thrilled when they "accidentally" call me Mama. I even encourage it somewhat. I can't help but think what it would be like to be in her shoes...the mother of two adorable kids....a gorgeous husband....

Is Nanny School a Worthy Investment?

opinion 1
Hey everyone! I need advice. I have been a professional full time Nanny for 4 years now. I was a part time Nanny and a babysitter for 3 years before that. I have an AA degree in liberal arts and I work part time for a nanny agency as a temp on the weekends. I will be turning 25 soon. I love my job but its time to move on. My charge is turning four and is currently in pre school. My day used to be filled with her but is now filled with errands and a lot of waiting for her to come home and play. I also miss having a baby and my current family only wants one child.

Im thinking of relocating to NYC or possibly some place warm. Im also thinking about being a live in Nanny, something I have never done before but i think could be great with the proper family and contract. With the job market for professional Nannies being over run with less then ideal families its seems only "professional formal families" have what i want and need - to be paid a fair wage legally with full benefits.

It took me 3 months to find my current family and that was WITH an agency! My question is, do you think Nanny School is worth it? I saw a new segment on T.V. a year ago about a Nanny School. It is a 3 month program that consists of a practicum with a family that will have a newborn and a toddler on fridays, infant care certification, health and nutrition for a child, cooking, defensive driving, etc.. basically everything I had to learn on the job. Besides the horses. Yes they teach you how to hopefully deal with horses. I can see this giving me a leg up for the professional formal families that I hope to interview with but its expensive and I would have to live there although that could be a plus since I have never moved away from my family. (I'm very close to my parents, sister, and nieces but I think its time for a change.) Has anyone gone to a nanny school? Do you think its a worthy investment? And to Employers: Would Nanny School would be a reason why you would hire a Nanny? Thank you for taking the time to read my post.

Transition to Live-in Position

opinion 1
Hi! I'm just about to transition from a live-out nanny to live-in. I've worked with this family for the past two years--full time in the summer, part time in the school year because of my college schedule. Does anyone have any tips on how to make sure this transition goes smoothly?

Kudos for this WAHD

opinion 1
Why does everyone hate on WAH parents, especially the dads? I happen to work for a great family they are both kind, caring, and helpful. Dad works from home. He's a nice guy, keeps to himself, except to say hello to the kids every so often. He doesn't flirt or interfere. I feel 100% safe in that house. I know I can't be the only one.

17 May, 2012

Temescal Public Library in Oakland, CA

bad nanny sighting 5
I attended the (May 16) Wednesday morning storytime/singalong at the Temescal Public Library in Oakland CA and there was a jarring scare that's been nagging at me all day. After the storytime, when all the masses of nannies with children and strollers were getting their things together to leave, a lady with her charge stepped out of the elevator (storytime is held in the library basement) and gently guided a toddler girl out. The woman called to me, the closest adult, asking if she was mine -- I was confused and said no. "This little girl was two floors up, all by herself! Where is her nanny?!" the woman asked. I turned around and an older woman rushed forward for her. This lady was apparently caring for two children today and was distracted by the little boy with her so didn't notice her little girl disappearing into the elevator. Yikes! The little girl looked about two, is African American, was wearing a yellow patterned dress and had her hair in various braids with clips. I am sorry that I didn't have a chance to observe more closely; my own toddler was getting to be a handful too at the moment! Not so much a bad nanny sighting, but an alarming one, given how lucky this little girl was that another caretaker caught her before she left the building altogether.

Note to Readers...

Normally ISYN Publishes on a first come, first serve basis. However, traffic has been at an all-time high this week and in the last 24hrs I have received over a dozen Submissions. I will go through all of them tonight and any of those that are time-sensitive will be Published first. Because there is only so much room on the front page of the Blog, I want to be fair and allow everyone a couple of days for the time they need to receive comments, so it will be staggered. Please be patient... I will try to get through everyone as quickly as possible. Thank you! - MPP

Resignation Brings Strong Determination

opinion 1
I need to share my story and gather advice for peace of mind. While I have already decided I need to leave this family, I would like to hear what other nannies would have done differently, and how I can avoid being taken advantage of the next time around.

Here goes... I started working for a family that were new to my state (and the US) a mere nine months ago, at the beginning of the 2011-2012 school year. Both parents travel for work frequently, with the dad being away every other month (six months out of the year, essentially making the mom a single mother) and the mom traveling two weeks at a time; she said she would only be away 3-4 times during the year, during which time I would live in with the kids (I am a live-out nanny) for the full 14 days. Other basic duties I agreed to take on, when neither or only one parent was away, included taking the children to school, picking them up after (I am a student and also attend university during regular school hours), helping them with their homework, and "light, child-oriented housekeeping". She agreed to pay me a flat-rate that would guarantee my full pay if they decided to have me work less or go out of town last minute. I thought that sounded like a good deal, even though it was only $10 an hour for two kids, and I really needed the job at the time, so accepted the position because I felt like I really clicked with the parents and the kids, despite the ominous possibility of having to work full-time for two weeks straight.

This is my fourth year of nannying, and while I have lived-in with families many times, I have never had to spend multiple nights as the sole guardian. This is where things get tricky. When the two kids were at their after-school activities, I was expected to come home and attend to my agreed-upon light-housekeeping duties. These "light" duties quickly morphed into me doing whatever my boss thought needed to be done because she was "so swamped" at work. This ranged anywhere from dusting the entire house, from top to bottom, to cooking their meals, to picking up and delivering packages, and the whole families laundry. Once, when they went out of town for a long weekend and I was due my regular pay, she instead insisted that I come to their house while they were away and "fulfill" the rest of my hours doing a variety of mindless chores, even though they had already had their housekeeping services in that day. One of the chores on that day included washing their sheets; so I did, I washed and dried and folded the sheets and put them, folded, on the beds. When I came into work the next week, my boss took me aside to chastise me for not having the foresight to put the sheets on the bed; because they had gotten in "so late" the night before and she was "so tired, but still had to go around making all the beds." I apologized, saying I didn't think to actually make the beds because she hadn't been specific and it wasn't a chore I was accustomed to doing, for them or any family I've worked for. She seemed like all was forgiven, but ever since then she has been extremely short with me.

I should also take the time to mention here that I don't get paid for the overnights I do, despite the periods being a minimum of two weeks at a time. She pays me up until midnight, but she doesn't feel like "she needs to pay me while I am sleeping." I had zero foresight to correct her on this measure when I first started working for her, because although I have been working with kids for four years, I had never accepted a job exactly like this one and assumed that that was how things were done. Also, concerning the homework situation: the younger child is just fine, really smart, bright 1st grader. The older child has ADHD that his parents choose to keep unmedicated, although he is in no type of counseling service or anything otherwise to help him cope with his ADHD. Instead, they force me to spend hours with him on expensive self-help computer programs that supposedly guarantee improved brain-function. When it comes down to actual homework time, it is utter torment. He will spend 3-4 hours every homework day (we usually designate 2 days a week for homework) painstakingly laboring over one or two pages of homework. Part of it is his ADHD, I realize that, but the other part of it is pure laziness. He is very manipulative and tells his parents I'm a bully and mean and that "I never smile" in order to get out of having to do homework with me. His mom has now hired a separate tutor for him (for the better, I know) and she is probably paying her double the amount that I am getting just to tutor him, and I play the tutor, nanny, chef, and personal assistant cards all for $10 an hour.

She supported me at the beginning when he first started having homework issues, but now seems convinced that it is a lack of effort on my part, and also on the part of the school's. The kids go to a well-to-do public school in the neighborhood with the standard 20-25 in the class, but her "poor children", who are accustomed to international private schools that their mom's company pays for when they relocate them to other countries, can't work in that kind of awful environment. She really became rude to me when the older son needed to get braces. She could not fit his orthodontist appointments into her schedule because she was "SO booked" and asked me if I would take him; the only times available were times I was in school. I told her no, I cannot skip school to take him to the dentist. She backed off. Next week she asked me again, practically pleading with me, if I could be late for class or leave early in order to take him. This was over my FINALS WEEK. I said NO, I cannot (will not!) skip class to take your son to the orthodontist. At this point during the school year (about 7 months in) I knew I could not come back after the summer to work for them again.

Time and time again she had taken advantage of me; both monetarily and personally. The last two weeks I am supposed to work for them (currently going on now), she is out of town again. Last week, I finally told her I needed to be paid at least minimum wage from midnight-7am, when the kids get up for school, simply because it is not my time; I am not off work, I am not free to leave, I am still on the job site--therefore I need to be paid. She said okay. But the next week she started treating me even worse. She only seems to be happy with the work I am doing for her if there are no complaints on my part. If I have to talk to her about a problem with her kids, or address an issue I am dealing with at work (e.g., the lack of monetary compensation, or doing more than what I am paid to do), she instantly gets annoyed with me. The end of that same week, she was paying me my weekly amount when I pointed out that she had been late twice that week. She tried to brush it off saying, oh, but it was only an hour past.... I said, no actually, it was two hours past. She said, fine, I guess I'll give you another $20, but this is getting really annoying (referring to my always having to remind her how much she actually owes me). She then started making personal attacks on my personality, and claiming that her kids said "I never smile" and how "I'm so mean" and that "other mothers say I never smile" (a complete fallacy, because I am honestly a happy, go-lucky person) and that this wasn't a win-win situation anymore and we should be "professional" about the next two weeks (the two weeks she is away, currently) and then go our separate ways.

This is very long-winded and not at all organized, and I haven't touched on all of the problems I've had with this family, but my question is essentially thus: how do I avoid being taken advantage of, (something I thought I had the hang of already, but apparently not), get paid what I'm worth concerning my experience/number of children/amount of work I am doing, and the like? Have other nannies had similar experiences not being able to communicate with their boss families? My MB is a straight-up business woman and she can easily manipulate me into seeing her side of the story and only her side of the story so I will easily relent and do what she wants. This experience has put a very bad taste in my mouth. I have worked for other high-profile families before, many of them difficult, but have never been taken advantage of and treated so poorly. Thoughts?

16 May, 2012

The Parent Trap

opinion 1
A question for nannies and those that work in childcare centers: at what point do you put in your resignation (nanny) or terminate care (at a childcare center as a family childcare provider or center administrator)? If you had this parent and her child in your class, would you cater to the parent or ask for a different class and risk losing your job?

There is a parent in my center who is very sweet, but goes from nice to bitch in 2.5 seconds. I understand that she has certain preferences - and that's perfectly fine, however, these are beyond preferences. She wants things a certain way, and will complain about anything and everything:
*She likes most staff members but there is a list of 3 staff members who are not, under any circumstances, allowed to be in the same room as her child for the 4 hours prior to school starting.
*She has gotten staff members fired; she has told my boss to fire certain people, and to my knowledge, it has happened.
*Staff has quit because of her.
*By far she is the toughest parent. Ever.

Her 5 year old daughter:
*Thinks the world revolves around her.
*If she is hungry and there is left over lunch, we have to feed her. NO EXECPTIONS. (I don't know if this true, this is what I have heard from her morning teacher, who does it out of fear of being yelled at by the parents and job loss. No other teachers do it.)
*She can do whatever she wants. (Again, morning teacher allows it.)
*I was going to go outside with her class before school started (after lunch) and the child says, " No! I don't want you to go outside. I want Miss ______ to go out with us." (Really? A 5 year old decides who the teacher is?)
*This child does not listen, and we have to make her the teacher helper, using creative redirection. Other children ask on a repeated basis, "why does ______ get to do what she wants? It's not fair."

So what are your thoughts? Staff do not like the parent, they don't want to work with the child, and I think my boss, owner and director are afraid of her (the parent.) I would let her know that we enjoy providing care for her, yet cannot continue to do so because of staffing needs and the treatment of the staff. If this didn't work and she started yelling at me, I would ask her to leave and terminate her care immediately. Any thoughts?

Cry Baby

opinion 1
I care for an 11 year old girl. Her mother described her as social, forgetful and sensitive. In my time with her I've seen her be extremely manipulative. Friday I asked her to turn off the tv and get her chores done and ready for dinner. She turned up her face to cry, as she always does when she doesn't want to do something. I said, " X, this and this needs to be done, crying won't help you." But it does help her sometimes because her other nanny gives into her when she cries.

Daughter told mom what I said when she got home. Mom called me aside and told me I wasn't to bully and belittle her daughter in that manner and speak to her so negatively. Thinking daughter had exaggerated, I told her what I had said. She told me I wasn't to ask her daughter not to cry, that I would have to come up with another method. So what's another method? I must be honest here, I'm thinking of quitting.

Roll in the Trundle Leaves Nanny with a Bundle

opinion 1
A couple months back I stayed up late to watch TV with by boss. He and his wife were getting a divorce. She was a horrible woman, nasty as could be, left him with the kids etc. Dad is the nicest guy ever, and the kids were so cute. I started staying later to help out. Anyways, that night we were up watching TV and one thing led to another and you know... Anyway it happened a few more times, and it stopped when I ended up moving away with my bf.

Anyways, I'm pregnant and I know for sure it's not my bfs. I know it belongs to my former boss. Should I tell him? I know he and his wife haven't divorced yet. Things are on hold for now but they aren't together either. Should I tell him? Should I tell my bf? Is there a chance for me and my ex boss?

Condolences

opinion 1
I had been offered and accepted a job caring for a newborn due in June. I just learned the family lost the baby and I will not be needed. Has anyone ever been in this situation before? Did you do anything for the family? Also I am out of a job, the job with my current family ends next week. I was to leave anyway because I primarily care for infants and toddlers and my charge now will be in school and having a nanny part time more geared towards his age. I'm not sure if they've hired someone yet. Should I ask for my job back until I get a new placement?

13 May, 2012

While Mom is Away, Dad and Nanny Play

opinion 1
I have recently been told some information of which I do not know what to do with. I have been with my family for 4 years and my charges Mums best friend has had her Nanny for about 10 months and over the last few months their Nanny and I have become fairly close and I see her almost every day at music classes, gym, art etc...

The other day this Nanny, lets call her K, told me something totally shocking. She has slept with the father of the kids she looks after over a dozen times! Her very married boss!!! She told me that he comes home during the day and they do it while the kids are asleep and she even told me that once they did 'things' at my charges birthday party in the garage!! I have met this man many many times and to me he seems totally nice, a good father, very loving with his wife and even loving to his wife in front of K... I do think she is telling the truth as she was in tears and telling me she is in love with him but he says it is a physical thing of which he just CANNOT HELP! Now for me. Who do I tell? Do I tell? My hubby had advised that I stay right out of it! The whole idea is awful, I don't know how K can do what she has been doing and risk undoing the family of the beautiful children she looks after. I get along great with my DB but would never in a million years cross that line simply for the love of my MB and the kids (oh and my darling hubby!) Advice please??

Living in a Society Free of Stereotypes

opinion 1
When will men who take care of little kids stop being viewed as perverts? During college, I got a job at a local church to work Sundays. I worked with infants-toddlers, or with the pre-k kids, while their parents were in worship. I have been working there for over four years now. I graduated from college, and now work as a teacher at an elementary school during the week and at this church most Sundays. My job there has evolved as I work with an autistic elementary aged child during the first part, and usually the infants-toddlers the second half, but sometimes the pre-k kids.

Today, this other person I was working with, while in the infant-toddler room decided to combine rooms, as we only had a two year old and her older sister. We ended up getting two more boys, another 2 year old, and a 1 year old, plus the pre-k kids. I noticed the two year old girl needed to be changed, as her pull-up was really sagging. As there were no changing tables in the room we were in, I took the girl, and her sister to a room with a changing table to change her. No problem. I changed the one year old too, as the other lady very rarely changes diapers. About 30 minutes later, the two year old girl’s pull-up was pretty full again, with the stars on the front faded. Her parents were coming soon to pick her up, and I didn’t want them to complain that we didn’t change her. Again, I took her, and her sister to change her. I got a dirty look by the other person, like I was making it up that she was wet, when she really was. It isn’t too uncommon for a kid to go in their diaper, right after they were changed.

As a male I have to be really careful in everything I do. When I changed this girl, her sister was in the room, and the door to the room was open. Women don’t have to take all of those extra precautions, but I have to, to protect myself from any false accusations. I could have asked one of the women to do it, but I shouldn’t have to do that. Let us not forgot that women can be perverts too. Look at the women teachers who have relations with their male students. Keep an open mind, and get to know the person, both male and female, before making assumptions about them. There are plenty of great male and female caretakers out there, just as there are plenty bad male and female caretakers as well. Hopefully, we will soon live in a society free of stereotypes.

Looking Out for #1 Since MB has Gone Crazy as #2

opinion 1
The mom of the family I work for is a teacher. When I first interviewed with her 2 years ago, I made it clear that I needed to work summers, and she assured me that she would be teaching summer school. Two years in a row she has not been able to find a summer school position, and I’ve been out of work for two months. I realize that summer school programs are being cut left and right due to budget cuts, but I really need to work summers to make ends meet.

On top of not working summers, the parents recently separated. The dad is the nicest guy and one of the best fathers you’ll ever meet. The mom has gone bat poop crazy. She was always difficult, but since the separation, she has become completely unbearable. She rarely has a kind word to say to anyone including her own children. Her attitude, and the fact that I’m out of work for another summer, has led me to the decision to find a new job. Now here’s where things get messy. I found out through the grapevine that the principal of the oldest child’s school is looking for a nanny. I decided to call her, and she seemed really excited that I might be available. She said she’s always been so impressed when she sees me with my charges, and her and her husband would love to meet with me.

Her and my only concern is the fact that she still has to interact with my current family. I’m not looking to cause trouble. I want to leave my current family with plenty of notice, and even help them find a new nanny if they want my help. I would love to stay in touch with the children, although I know their mom is probably not going to let that happen. What it boils down to, is that I need to look out for myself. When I meet with the principal and her husband, if we seem like a good match, and they offer me the job, I'm pretty sure I'll take it. I just don’t know how and what to tell my current family. I am going to feel horrible for the dad and the children.

12 May, 2012

employer horror story
I started nannying pretty young, but what I thought to be a great job when I was in highschool quickly turned into a nightmare. I was hired by a very rich family to be one of four nannies that cared for their 5 year old (K) I was only 17 at the time, and was paid $9 an hour, which seemed like a good deal to me, as a kid in highschool. I worked for this family for two years before I decided I needed a break, it was a difficult position for me because the parents were very absent from this child’s life and it distressed me to see K upset over rarely seeing her parents. About six months later they had baby number 2 (O) and asked that I come back to work for them at a higher pay rate. I agreed, I missed K and had been pretty broke without having a job the last few months, so I began working for them again.

I was asked to take full responsibility for both children, care for the dogs in the home, keep the kitchen tidy, do their dishes, do the laundry of the entire family and change the sheets on all beds, along with some other things that would be added here and there. It became extremely stressful. They had multiple nannies who worked in shifts for up to 14 hours a day, every day. I would usually come in around 4pm and leave at 10pm, but if I left any of the chores undone my boss would be angry at me for not staying past the time my shift ended. I accompanied them on one vacation, where they brought along three nannies and three children, the schedule was very unorganized and I ended up working between 10-14 hours a day, every day during the trip. I was not paid for any hours, because my boss claimed that paying for our hotel, food, and plane tickets was like giving us a “free vacation.” My boss liked to give gifts to her nannies, which was very sweet of her, but she often denied up extra pay or raises based on the fact that she gave us other things, things we had not asked for. On top of all this, my boss put us down as independent contractors on her taxes, instead of employees, which lead to me paying an immense amount of taxes.

In the end, my boss entered a nanny share with another woman who had an infant. I knew I would be caring for three children at this point, and asked for an appropriate change to my hourly rate (it was already quite low, for all the work that I did.) My boss told me no, claiming the gifts and vacations as a reason not to up my hourly rate. We argued and eventually I gave my two weeks notice. Later I learned that this woman was giving my boss $5 an hour to have the nannies watch her son, but my boss was keeping it to subsidize our regular hours, rather than adding it to our pay. Here, I must point out, this woman is a millionaire, and she was keeping $5 an hour from the people who are dedicated to care for her children! I loved those kids, I practically raised them for four years, heck I even got along very well with MB sometimes, but the stress and complete lack of concern for my rights and well being were not worth staying in that job any longer.

This was a few years ago, now I work under a contract with a wonderful family that is very fair, appreciative, and understanding of my needs. I did the correct homework and educated myself on my rights and the way a family should treat their nannies. I wanted to share my horror story of a work experience to make sure everyone out there understands that any of the behaviors addressed above are not appropriate from a Boss Family AT ALL. I wish someone would have told me that, despite being young and somewhat inexperienced in the world of nannying, I was being taken advantage of for YEARS. If you are new to nannying please do your homework, understand the laws in your state, and find a wonderful family that understands your needs and rights. If anything less than that is offered to you, run for the hills and never look back.

Opportunity Knocks

opinion 1
Hello- I am really hoping this gets posted asap as I am desperately seeking the advice and input of ISYN readers... I have been working for an amazing family for just about two years now. I started when the little boy was 8 months but met him and his family months prior because I was a nanny for a friend of theirs and we were in the same music class.

The family I was working for moved out of state, and they were looking for a nanny so they hired me. It's been fantastic ever since. It is the best position I have ever held and am so happy working for them. Now here is what I need advice on.. The family I work for was renting their apartment in the city we live in. When their landlord put it up for sale, they tried to buy it but it didnt work out. They sat me down to talk a few days ago. The mom was in tears and told me how much I mean to them and that I am like family to them and that anywhere they move they want me to be able to get to them. (I am just getting my license for the first time in my later twentys and do not have a car yet.)

They bring up possibly moving to a suburb close to the city where the mom's parents own a house. The house has an au pair flat that is large and spacious just without a full kitchen (I dont really cook) but does have a seperate entrance. They asked if I would be willing to move with them and live rent free. They would also provide me with a car to use while working. If I did this, not having to pay rent would allow me to save up for my own car and pay off debts that I have, including the last of my student loans. Even though it could be a good oppurtunity for me, it does come with its personal sacrifices. It would mean seeing my serious, long term boyfriend who lives in the city less. I probably wouldn't see my friends as much either but after giving it some good thought I figured at 27 years old, paying off my debt and getting a car in the next year would mean my boyfriend and I could eventually get married without carrying any financial baggage into it.

The family has expressed interest in moving over seas to where the father is from probably in two years or so. Here is my question- How much should I ask to make if we go forward with this arrangement? I currently make 17 dollars per hour before taxes. I pay my own health insurance. Nothing has been set in stone so its hard to know all the fine details but the mom is due to have her second child in September and my current charge will be going to preschool at least two full days a week. The mom will be on maternity leave probably for about two months and then I will be back to full time. What I pay for my share of the rent now (i live with a roommate) is a little less than 700 not including any utilities. Not paying rent will be nice but I still need to make enough to pay other bills, have a life and put away some savings.

Can anybody tell me what a fair amount for everyone would be? Do I make less for the time mom is home with her newborn? Do I charge less on the days when I only have the baby and not the preschooler and charge more when I have both? Any helpful and constructive input would be greatly appreciated! Thank you.

MB Annoyed Nanny has More than One Family

opinion 1
I'm a live in nanny and my contract states I have the weekends off UNLESS they ask me to babysit for an occasional date night. Besides that, I am free to do as I please all weekend long. I recently babysat for another family in the neighborhood... I met the mom through a playgroup and she asked if I would ever consider helping out by babysitting once in a while on the weekend. I said sure because a.) it's extra money and b.) I wouldn't be doing anything anyway.

My MB at my live-in job gets really annoyed and kind of mad when I tell her I am babysitting for the other family. I never have let the extra babysitting interfere with my current nanny job... and my MB knows that her family is my first priority. I don't know why she gets so mad that I ocasionally watch other peoples' kids. Is she right to be angry at me? I didn't think it was a big deal but maybe I am wrong? Nannies...mamas...what are your thoughts? Should I just be a one family nanny?

11 May, 2012

Last Name First, First Name Last

opinion 1
Out of curiosity, how do you all have your charges address you? Just your first name? Miss/Mrs./Ms./Mr. FirstName? Miss/Mrs./Ms./Mr. LastName? I personally prefer just my first name, but I have had some parents insist their kids call me Miss FirstName (In fact, if mentioned in the interview, this can be one of my own personal red flags, as it's usually a sign that the parents are much more formal than I would generally prefer). So I'm curious, what do you all prefer?

10 May, 2012

Miffed MB Behaves Badly Over Nanny's 2wk Notice

opinion 1
I have been a nanny for a super cute little girl for the past year and truly love her. When I was first hired the little girl was just 1 and they were living in a small house and I was asked to do some laundry, wash the dishes and obviously clean up after myself and the baby. Occasionally she would ask me to swifter or vacuum while the baby was napping. Now, a year later they have moved to a much bigger house with 2 playrooms as well as 6 bathrooms and I have slowly become much more responsible for the household chores. I walk into post it notes everyday asking me to make random food items or to wash the mirrors. I am now doing all the vacuuming everyday, making most of their meals, doing all their laundry, cleaning up the massive amount of dishes they leave in the sink for me, changing and washing the parents sheets, emptying all the trash cans, and taking care of the child and all of her needs including sheets and clothes.

I gave my two week notice today as professionally and calmly as I could before I left but she flipped out on me and told me how immature I was and that she was disappointed in me and the way I chose to tell her. She yelled and screamed telling me to "get it through my head" that I was wrong and that a nanny doesn't have a "real" job so two weeks notice is not appropriate and that I really screwed her over. I tried to explain to her that it is my JOB and my sole income and this is how I would leave any other job; with a two week notice. I made it clear that I love the little girl and I do respect her and her husband but its just not the right job for me anymore. She continued to tell me how immature I was and that she would have expected me to come to her and sit down with her and her husband to come up with a plan of action.

I feel very awful for the way she handled it because I obviously want to stay in touch with them for the little girls sake, but I feel absolutely disrespected and uncomfortable with returning for my next two weeks. I'm going to have to sit down with the both of them but I know her attitude is going to be completely different in front of her husband. I don't know what else I am supposed to say, I also am tempted to tell the husband how horribly she treated me in front of the little girl when I "sprang" the news on her.. thoughts?

Manipulative Nightmare

opinion 1
I recently finished a very stressful nanny job that I was in for two years (long story). Fortunately it ended on good terms. I began interviewing with new families and accepted an offer from a seemingly great family. It felt like a great fit.. Really good pay, benefits, an adorable and very charming four year old ("K") and great parents.

The first week was great, and then the nightmare began. I was told during my interview (should have seen this as my big red flag) that the child can be manipulative and likes to "negotiate". K has never had a nanny, but has had lots of babysitters and is very social. The first week was wonderful, but as soon as K figured out i was not just a short term babysitter, K did a complete 180 on me. He is literally the most disagreeable, whiney and manipulative child I have ever met. This kid would literally argue over whether or not the sky is blue. He complains about even the smallest things and refuses to do anything that is not his original idea. I understand that children are challenging- I have a lot of experience with children this age; I have been a nanny for almost five years. I worked primarily with two families and my experiences have been with kids ranging from birth to age six.

Before working as a nanny I worked in a preschool/daycare for a year and a half. I also have my bachelors in early childhood Ed. I have tried all of the typical "love and logic" strategies, positive discipline techniques, giving him choices, warnings, etc etc.. but what I have observed is that this does not seem like he is just testing the new nanny, this seems to be his personality. I watch him plead and negotiate every little thing with his parents and honestly they seem to deal with it really well, however he is just relentlessly disagreeable. I have worked with kids with chronic behavior issues, kids that are aggressive, and I have experience with autism, so just to clarify these issues are not simply me being inexperienced. K is rude, impolite, snappy and orders me around. He refuses to say please or thank you and tells me that he doesn't like me if I don't do something the way that he likes me to. No matter where I park when we go out he will whine and tell me "I don't like where you just parked" or we will pick out library books and he will complain that he hates those books and they weren't the ones he wanted. Whatever I cook for him he won't eat. I could go on and on.

I really like the parents, my schedule, benefits and pay, etc however I am becoming depressed and dreading coming to work after only 2 months. Has anyone ever quit due to a bad match with the kids? It makes me feel terrible to think about leaving but honestly this kid is making my life hell. I am so sad because I was so excited to finally have a great fit after sticking it out in a high stress work environment for two years prior to this.

09 May, 2012

Reader Poses Interesting Question...

opinion 1
As my semester closes this week, I reflect on my communications class. The skills and knowledge I have obtained throughout the course are invaluable-how to communicate with others both verbally and nonverbally, both in written and through body language, and even how to handle the toughest job interview. In addition to my semester ending, I am leaving a position I have held for 3.5 years. During my interview for my new position, I was a bit nervous, as I had interviewed with the same company four years ago and didn't get the job. I remember everything I learned in class, relaxed, and was offered the job. As with any job, I am a bit nervous I won't like the new position, however, I do feel that the new job is in my best interest, as I will have the opportunity to advance within the company, whereas my current employer doesn't offer advancement in positions or pay. (I started with the company in 2008, and it has taken me 2.5 years to earn $0.50 more than my original hourly pay.) Questions we don't know how to answer, inappropriate questions, and the tone of voice used by the interviewer can make the candidate uncomfortable...etc.

Nannies, what are some of the craziest interviews you have been on?

Flirty Father Needs a Kick in the Gonads

opinion 1
Help! The father in the family has a crush on me, he is always flirting. I'm not interested and never flirt back and he gets pissed off when he flirts and I don't flirt back. I like the job, the mother is great, the kids are great, the pay is great. I don't know what to do about him. This is my first job. I just graduated high school and I don't want to be a quitter. My dad will be disappointed if I quit.