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Mistaken for the nanny

post #1 of 52
Thread Starter 
I was in the playground with DS today and a woman commented about how cute DS was. I thanked her and kept playing with DS. Later, as I was leaving, she said to me, "My daughter said to me 'Oh Mommy, her baby is so cute!' and I told her that he wasn't your baby. Why did she think he was yours? She said he looks like you. Sooo...is he yours?"
:
My DS is light even with his tan, and he's got straight hair, but his face is all me.
Any one else ever been mistaken for the babysitter or nanny?
post #2 of 52
My dd was in NICU and once when I went in to see her I heard the nurses behind her say, "THAT'S her mother?!?!?!"
It particularly sucks when people are saying how beautiufl dd is and then are baffled that I'm the mom.
Oh, well.
(BTW, your ds is absolutely gorgeous. I also think he looks like you.)
post #3 of 52
Happens to me all the time. I am African American, my son's father is white as is my partner. My son is very light skinned with wavy/straight hair. He is a wonderful toddler who loves to go up to people and say "hi." When he is with either his father or my partner, they aren't asked "Is he yours?" but I constantly get that question. Despite the fact that he looks a lot like me.

I've decided to put a postive spin on it- it is the life force's (which some call god) way of making sure I remember that he is his own person and parenthood is not about ownership. I hope this makes sense.

On the other hand, since day one, I have been reminded of how awsome DNA is. In the begining, the three primary adults in his life (his parents) frequently looked at each other and said "he doesn't look like what I expected."(smile, he was born with bone straight hair).

Anyway, all this to say you are not alone.
Zora
post #4 of 52
It happened to me a lot when I lived in London. I guess it was more common to see babies with nannies than mums in the area I lived. My son and I don't look alike.
post #5 of 52
Big hugs to you. I saw your pictures and he looks just like you, and you are both beautiful.

My parents went through similar, but different. lol My big sister and I are adopted( 21 mos apart, from different families) and she is naturally darker complected, her mom was french and we know nothing about her dad. My dad is darker complected as his father's family is Croatian, and my mom is light with dark blonde hair and blue eyes, her family is english and scottish.

One day when my sister was still an infant, they all went to the grocery store. Dad ran off to get something and while he was coming back he saw two little old ladies looking at my mom and my sister in confusion. Then they saw my Dad come up to them and they both nodded at each other and smiled knowingly. It still makes my Dad laugh
post #6 of 52
Yes, it used to happen to me when my children were small, and it always rankled. It doesn't happen so much now that they are teens and wouldn't be accompanied by a nanny. I think it's offensive because people are making an assumption based on a stereotype.

I'm half-Asian (Japanese descent on one side, UK anglo on the other, but all Canadian). DH is Scottish descent (also all Canadian). DS was a blue-eyed, blond baby.

I learned to assert our relationship in public - at library playgroup, the playground, school,shopping - by loudly proclaiming things like "Oh give that to Mummy" or "Do you need Mummy to help you" or "Mummy wants a hug" and following with the accompanying physical action. This strategy avoided most of the stupid questions, but incredibly, some people would still admit to me "Oh, I thought you were the nanny".
post #7 of 52
Grrr!!! I'm not looking forward to that. : Your baby looks just like you. The only difference is in hair texture and skin color. That's it. Strange enough my mother used to get "oh, your daugher looks so much like your DH (my father)", because I was dark skinned and my mother light. I have her face almost exactly. Then the same person would look at my brother who has more of our father's features and say that he looked like my mother because his skin color was lighter like hers. WTF?!?! Anyone with half a brain if they were looking at the features rather than skin coloring would know that is your baby. Sheesh!!! My baby is coming up soon and if s/he comes out favoring my DH's side I'm sure to get the ignorant questions even if the baby has my face. How do you deal with it?
post #8 of 52
My eldest is 16 and when he was born, I was mistaken for the nanny all the time, it used to really grate on my nerves. I am AA (cocoa complexion) and ds (his dad is white) was pretty fair with curly hair, the thing was at the time we lived in a pretty diverse area but still people made this silly mistake.

Fast forward years later when dd was born 3 years ago, now we live in a truly homogenous state (Maine) and yet oddly enough I have never been mistaken for the nanny. DD is light thought darker than my son was at that age and has curly hair but people seem to recognize that she looks exactly like me.

Its funny because I was truly prepared this time to be mistaken for the nanny, I know it can be hurtful and truly irritate but not really sure there is much you can do about other than to correct people.

Shay
post #9 of 52
Argh. I HATE that. Both of my kids are lighter than me, one is the same complexion as yours who looks a lot like me. Totally has my eyes. But blond hair. The other is super pale with blue eyes and hair rapidly turning blond.

People assume I'm the nanny! I look at them and icily state..."I'm their MOTHER." and walk away. Not every brown woman taking care of kids lighter than herself is a nanny. Bunch of ninnies!
post #10 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2mygirl View Post
(BTW, your ds is absolutely gorgeous. I also think he looks like you.)
Thank you! It's funny- he's actually the image of my brother at that age. Realllly weird when I'm nursing him...

That is so rude that the nurses would say that.
post #11 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by zora View Post

I've decided to put a postive spin on it- it is the life force's (which some call god) way of making sure I remember that he is his own person and parenthood is not about ownership. I hope this makes sense.


Zora
That is certainly a healthy way of thinking that. It does grate my nerves when people think that he couldn't possibly be mine just because he's light. I'm not even that dark but it's hard for folks to fathom that I may be his mother and not his nanny.
post #12 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nznavo View Post
It happened to me a lot when I lived in London. I guess it was more common to see babies with nannies than mums in the area I lived. My son and I don't look alike.
Where I live, it certainly is more common to see babies with nannies (mostly West Indian). SAHMs are quite rare around here. I used to take my son to the indoor playground at the Y and I'd say most of the adults there were nannies.
post #13 of 52
Thread Starter 
[QUOTE=Ms Apricot;11936638]

I learned to assert our relationship in public - at library playgroup, the playground, school,shopping - by loudly proclaiming things like "Oh give that to Mummy" or "Do you need Mummy to help you" or "Mummy wants a hug" and following with the accompanying physical action. [QUOTE]

I do this too, I must admit. I also smother him with kisses and hugs constantly.
One big giveaway though is that I actually play with my son. Lots of the nannies don't play with their charges.
post #14 of 52
I'm very white and DS has his bio-dad's coloring. He is the image of me, but many times I've had people do the exaggerated YOU'RE his mother? bit.

Mostly in the midwest. Never in California or Hawaii, interestingly enough. Like people in the midwest don't have interracial relationships or something.:
post #15 of 52
i probably would have gone off if it was a bad day and then had dialogue with her about perception if it was a dood day. people annoy me sometimes, but i have been there... from strangers trying to cart my dd of from me in public "because i thought she was lost and i didn't think she was with you" to a mama who was horrified that i was nursing what she thought was someone else's child. :
post #16 of 52
Well, I myself am not a multi-cultural family, but I saw your post and when I read it I felt like I had to respond.

I live in a community with many multi-cultural families and marriages. I think it's great.

Not only are there multi-cultural related families, but a lot of families also adopt.

So, I just think it's a bit culturally unaware to say something like that on a playground to a stranger...for all kinds of reason. The woman may not have intended to be rude. People are now to make gaffes when they are confronted with something they don't know. It doesn't excuse it, but I'd use any future comments as a teaching opportunity!

Families come in all hues, shapes, and sizes. I don't know why people don't get that, but we can teach them!
post #17 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigeyes View Post
I'm very white and DS has his bio-dad's coloring. He is the image of me, but many times I've had people do the exaggerated YOU'RE his mother? bit.

Mostly in the midwest. Never in California or Hawaii, interestingly enough. Like people in the midwest don't have interracial relationships or something.:
Some people just can't get past color. It's so ridiculous.
I'm actually half Korean/half Black myself and I look very much like my Korean mother. People never think she's my mom.
post #18 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bad Mama Jama View Post
i probably would have gone off if it was a bad day and then had dialogue with her about perception if it was a dood day. people annoy me sometimes, but i have been there... from strangers trying to cart my dd of from me in public "because i thought she was lost and i didn't think she was with you" to a mama who was horrified that i was nursing what she thought was someone else's child. :

That is absolutely awful. I'm sorry that happened to you.
Wow.
I don't know. Usually I just don't have the energy to get into it.
post #19 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by That Is Nice View Post
Well, I myself am not a multi-cultural family, but I saw your post and when I read it I felt like I had to respond.

I live in a community with many multi-cultural families and marriages. I think it's great.

Not only are there multi-cultural related families, but a lot of families also adopt.

So, I just think it's a bit culturally unaware to say something like that on a playground to a stranger...for all kinds of reason. The woman may not have intended to be rude. People are now to make gaffes when they are confronted with something they don't know. It doesn't excuse it, but I'd use any future comments as a teaching opportunity!

Families come in all hues, shapes, and sizes. I don't know why people don't get that, but we can teach them!
Honestly, I don't think she was trying to be rude. She actually was trying to flatter my son by saying how cute he was.
I saw her the next day and she again went on and on about how adorable he was. I guess that's good enough for me.
post #20 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamsMama View Post
Some people just can't get past color. It's so ridiculous.
I'm actually half Korean/half Black myself and I look very much like my Korean mother. People never think she's my mom.

Maybe I'm weird that way, but I often look at kids when they're out and try to find similarities in the people they're with. I think it's cool the way some kids are the image of one parent while others are a perfect blend of both.

I have often noticed that when people say someone looks like someone famous, for example, they don't look anything like them other than something as superficial as skin tone or hair color, so when someone makes one of those comments I tend to lump them in with those unobservant sheeple who think all blondes look alike, all African Americans look alike, etc. It tends to be the same thing with folks who think moms with different skin colors than their dcs don't look anything like them. Call me impatient and judgmental, but I quickly lose interest in anything they have to say after that.
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