Shamed for Teaching her Charges Basic Manners

     Have you ever been so mad that you are literally shaking? I am a nanny. I have been a nanny for 7 years. I am friends with all of my former nanny families. Friday evenings we usually talk about the week before I get my paycheck. I don't really like the set up either because they have the check lying face down in front of them at the kitchen table, and only after the meeting is over do they give me my pay. Nevermind these meetings happen at 730 and I get done at 7.

      So, all I did was teach the children, 6 & 8 to say please, thank you and excuse me before interrupting. The father LITERALLY told me, "I know you think you did a nice thing, but in this world, that isn't what they need. No one listens to excuse me. We don't want to raise meek children that are shoved out of the way or spoken over. We want to raise leaders and we need you to get on board with that".

    I was shocked at what I heard and trying to make sense of it. I asked, "So what do you think I should do better?" The father told me there was a time and place for manners. (I believe he said "around grandparents and politicians") but that I should celebrate their ideas and energy and help them explore.. I politely suggested that I do that. The father said, "Look we like you alot, and it's really not enough to even be a criticism, I just want you to give it some thought. Take a look at the kids out there today and how they bully and victimize other kids."

   So I am "off work" now and I have my paycheck in my hand but I am so angry I am shaking. I am a nanny in Chicago, Il. for a family from the same basic background as my own. I think I am most mad because I didn't say enough, but let him basically insult me for teaching their child manners! The horror!


Jean said...

I'm surprising myself here, but I can see his point. Your description doesn't sound like he 'humiliated or shamed' you for showing manners. to me, it seems that he tried to phrase it gently "I know you think..."

Of course their views on manners should have been discussed prior to hiring you. Some families suck at communicating their parenting philosophy clearly. He doesn't want them to say please, thank you and excuse me. His choice. The issue for you is can you deal? If he had yelled at you or abused you for teaching them, I could see your anger. But this to me is a care giving philosophy issue.

As to the extra 30 min for weekly review: do they pay you for it? If not, that's a bigger issue.

this_nick said...

You either decide to keep working for a moron or you don't. Good luck either way!

OTNanny said...

Manners are a non-negotiable in my book. Respectful human beings learn to say please and thank you and not interrupt someone when they're talking. Regardless of whether or not the dad wasn't "shaming" the OP, I wouldn't work for someone with that mentality.

Anonymous said...

That kind of parent should really think twice before having kids, especially if that's how they want to raise them.

I understand that they need to be conditioned as I agree that life is tough but it doesn't mean they have to learn to be rude. Instead they could train them for independence ,challenges logic or other things that they are likely to face. (obviously age appropriate)

Maybe the parents will be okay for the kids not to bother having manners with them but what about when they go to friends home? When they speak to their teacher? The social activities and so many other situations that they NEED to be polite? As a Nanny I can garantee you that I don't put up with families that have no idea how to raise their child and don't "believe" in dicipline. It's a recipe for disaster.

If the kids don't learn the basics of dicipline, it's going to get tough for them in their life. I can garantee that the people that are not related to the kids and therefore don't have an ounce of love toward them will take a thorough pleasure to put them back in their places, sometimes in a cruel way.

There is definitely a clash of childcare philosophy when it comes to you and the parents. There is nothing wrong with teaching children manners, it's hard work and it actually proves that you are a conciensious nanny and that you truly care about the development of these kids . A mediocre Nanny would not have bothered and said Amen to everything that the father said as long as he pays for it.

You seem to be a good one and they most likely don't deserve you . Instead , they should hire a Nanny at their image. If I were you I would defo give my notice to work for a family that has more principles.

Please keep us updated !

Kerrie said...

So to be a successful leader one must find it essential to not use manners? Da effffff

RBTC said...

i agree with anonymous, you need to think carefully if you wish to stay with this family - they are hypocrites, and you will be miserable contributing to bringing up the kids in a substandard way

it would be interesting if you could tell the dad - part of life is that kids need to adapt to different expectations - grandma and i, nanny, require x, while dad and mom require y - so the kids will meet expectations accordingly - but he's too much of a bully to go along with that probably

yes - the "interview" should not be free - you are being bullied - keep us updated

tell him you know he believes in winners and strength and it's a two way street!!lol

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MNnanny said...

You can still raise a leader that has manners. I've been a nanny for two years and I always make sure my charges are saying please and thank you, excuse me. It seems their parents really appreciate what I'm teaching their children while they're working all day.
Get out. They sound like self entitled assholes.