|Grandmother's Love by Cynthia Snider|
Over the course of my ten day visit, things kept coming up that seemed over the top to me. If I asked, usually my son, he assured me this was the norm and how everyone handled things. I raised my children and still live in the midwest, so it is fair to imagine I don't understand how things are done in New York.
I do think that if this is the normal and this is how children are being raised, then it's a very sad reflection of our times. I gave up discussing things with my son, who grew irritated. My daughter in law suggested I leave early, but I insisted to stay through Easter. I am posting this without any identifiable information for a reason.
These are the things that I found worrisome.
1. Most days both parents leave the house before the child is awake. The nanny is the person to first see the child. Either the nanny wakes her or the child comes to the nanny.
2. When I would ask about an interesting learning toy that GD was playing with or an especially cute dress or even a sippy cup, no one could tell me where it came from, unless the nanny was in the room. If the nanny was in the room, she would know where it came from and how much it costs because it appears she is in charge of purchasing everything for the child. This included books, snacks, groceries, toiletry items like diapers and shampoo, even the umbrella stroller.
3. GD has two little friends she plays with. I met them both while I was there. They get together, one with the stay at home mother and one with a nanny. When I mentioned parts of the visit, like "That Daniel is a real cutie, what do his parents do?" Neither my son or DIL could answer. They didn't know where the children lived and didn't even appear to recognize the children's first names.
4. The nanny takes two classes at night so she must leave without fail two nights by 630. Because they tried and could not make this schedule work, they hired a second childcare provider who works Monday and Wednesday nights from 630-9:30. I suggested this was unnecessary and they got irritated, again with me. I was told that they had to give her enough hours to make it worth her wild and I just didn't understand. I asked what they needed to do until 930 at night and I was told that it didn't really matter because GD was usually in bed asleep at 730.
5. On the days I had the children, we had a day of very nice weather. I asked both seperately if they would like to meet us for a picnic or if I should come visit them at work with GD. They looked at me like I had two heads.
6. The nanny does not work on Saturday and Sunday. She does however, pre-make the child's meals for Saturday and Sunday.
7. When the evening babysitter called on the phone to see if I needed her for the Wednesday, I told her we did not but thanked her. She then asked me if they needed her at all Saturday. I didn't even understand the question, but I was there to spend time with my granddaughter so I said no. I couldn't get a straight answer but I think they are also using her now for weekend babysitting. Neither of them works on weekends.
8. I asked not because I was encouraging, but because it seemed the thing to ask, "so when am I going to have a grandson." I was told that "soon, we don't want the children more than three years a part".
9. It seems exceptions may have been made while I was there, but I get the feeling that GD is most nights put to bed by the nanny too.
10. GD's birthday party was lovely. It was held in a restaurant with sweet decorations, candy center pieces. The children that attended were of varying ages, many of my DIL and son's friends and a few children nanny knows through Mommy and me music class. The nanny planned, arranged and handles all of the invitations. You wouldn't have known this at the party though. She stayed off to the side with some of the nannies in attendance. She let DIL take the reigns and bask in the accolades.
I am only 60 years old. I understand having a career and having a good nanny help you raise your child. I do not understand having a nanny raise your child. I ask you, is this the standard?