Nanny expecting twins... realistic expectations? - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-07-2011, 08:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, this is less about me and more about my nanny. Currently I work 4 days per week full-time (11 hours including my commute, 4 days per week). My nanny has just told me she is expecting twins in October. Actually, he 40th week is in mid-October. She is hoping to continue working but I have serious worries. I am a single-mom and going through a lot this year. Because I have only so much work flexibility, a dependable nanny is critical. Now, she is a dream - a real modern Mary Poppins. So, I desperately want to make things work for her. I had agreed previously that if she had a baby she would be welcome to bring the baby w/ her to work. But I am worried, and I am concerned that her expections (and likely mine) are unrealistic. I have two boys, they will be nearly 5 and age 8 when the twins are due. She has no other children and little to no experience w/ babies. For example, she seemed suprised when I talked w/ her about how little newborns sleep and how long that sleepless period lasts. She thought they "woke up" every two hours and that was it - that they went right back to sleep. My impression was that she was not aware of how exhausting the newborn stage is. I only have experience w/ singletons, so it is hard for me to know how it is with twins.

 

So - a few questions - and I would very much appreciate your thoughts/feedback about how to navigate this situation.

 

1. I have to leave for work at 7:00am possibly earlier (6:30) with some work changes that are due to take place NLT August. My feeling was that it would be impossible for her to make it to the house by that hour. Thoughts?

 

2. Can she realistically care for twins and two older children? Remember, I am paying her for childcare, so it isn't exactly the same as her being home with some kids of her own. I need to depend on her to take my kids to/from preschool and school, appointments, etc.

 

3. How likely is bedrest w/ a high risk twin pregnancy? It seems likely to me. I have to talk to her and encourage her to talk to her doctor about this more specifically. She is 40 and has fibroids and has had multiple miscarriages in the past. She has already had an epsiode of unexplained bleeding at 12 weeks (which stopped and all was ok, thank goodness).

 

4. If you were in a similar situation as a nanny and had twins, at what point (if ever) did you feel like returning to work on a 1230 - 530 schedule woudl have been realistic. (I can arrange alternate care for the kids for the morning, as one possible senario.)

 

Thanks for any thoughts. Any resources you have that I can pass to her, advise, encoruagement, etc.would be most welcome. I really want to make it work for all of us, but I am getting very very worried.

 

Thanks!

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Old 04-07-2011, 11:41 PM
 
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Oh, this must be really difficult for you! I know how hard it is to find a wonderful nanny who clicks with your family, of course you don't want to loose her!

 

But, realisticly, in my opinion: I don't think it's doable for her. Or anyone! No way!! (Sorry for being so blunt)

 

The first 3 months (at least!), with all the twin moms I've ever met, are usually just about survival. Just getting through the day and taking care of those two babies takes up all the time and energy you have. I can't imagine anyone in that situation also working at the same time. Sure, some twin moms have older kids that they need to take care of while also looking after newborn twins, and they still do it somehow, but I think that's different.

 

So if I was in your shoes I'd probably sit down with your nanny, and come up with a plan that works for both of you, as in she'll work until XY weeks (not that this is totally plannable either, but at least you can have some sort of goal in mind), in the meantime you can look for someone to fill in, and then you check in with her once the babies are a few months old.

My boys are 10 months now, and I guess I could maybe imagine being able to work as a nanny with them around. But even then, my kids would always be my first priority, so if one of mine needed me I'd attend to him over the nannying-kids. Don't know if you're happy with this for your children, to not get the full attention that they might need.

 

Ok, hope you find a solution (and hopefully a new wonderful nanny). All the best to you and your little ones, and to your nanny too!

 

:) Jenny

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Old 04-08-2011, 08:39 AM
 
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I am 28 weeks pregnant with twins and I recently quit my job at my kids (5 and 3) preschool because I found I was so exhausted on those days.  I am low risk I guess you could say but I am starting to really feel the weight of this pregnancy.  If I did not have my husband to help with household chores and the kids in the evening I really don't know how I would do it.  I know some women have done it but I think it is highly unrealilistic that she will be able to preform her job up until she delivers.  I can't atest to afterward but I know there is now way I would consider it! 

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Old 04-08-2011, 09:14 AM
 
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Lots of twin moms go near or full term, with no bed rest.  Granted, I have an office job, but I worked until 2 days before delivery at 39 weeks and was very active all through.  But there's no guaranteeing that outcome, and I certainly didn't expect it.  Sounds like you and she need some contingency plans.

 

Is there anyone who could act as a "mother's helper" for your nanny, if she finds she needs it?  And does your nanny have help at home?  It's one thing to contemplate continuing work, but if she's up all night at home and then handling your boys and her twins during the day, that's an awful lot. 

 

Lots of moms here have cared for 2 older sibs and newborn twins.  It is done all the time, sometimes with more than 2 older kids.  But it will be tough, and may not be what you want for your sons. 

 

Twin pregnancy doesn't have to be a nightmare, but it sounds like everyone will be better off with a back-up plan and / or help.

 

Good luck to you both!


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Old 04-08-2011, 09:18 AM
 
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Nope. I don't think it will work much longer. I returned to work after 6 weeks with the twins. Sleep depravation made it so hard to work for the first year. My reliability has been crap for over two years. She could probably keep your kids out of trouble, but lots of real, meaningful interaction probably won't happen. I don't know many twin moms who aren't on complete survival mode for a year or more.

And if she has preemies? Not likely she will want to bring them around your older kids. With two households and four children in the mix, someone is going to be sick a lot! Probably not very reliable.

I have a nanny. She has 2 kids and I have 4 kids. This winter I have missed 10+ days of work! I also have 2 backup sitters so that isn't all the days she hasn't been able to make it.

Such a tough spot! I feel for you.

Joanna - wife to Mike, mamachicken to Cub(8/98), Kitten (4/07), Dew-man, and Woe-boy(twins, 10/08)
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Old 04-08-2011, 09:43 AM
 
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Oh lord.  Some docs would have put your nanny on bed rest for the unexplained bleeding - I think you've been lucky so far.

 

The side of me that's concerned with HR says that this situation is a worker's comp claim just waiting to happen.  And you probably don't even have coverage for that, so she wouldn't be able to collect. 

 

Twins are more likely to make a mama exhausted, more likely to require bed rest, and more likely to be premature.  At the very least, you need backup care and contingency plans.  If your intention is to keep this nanny in the long-term, I would talk to her about planning to line up someone to fill in for her "maternity leave", which I would want to plan to start about 2 months before her due date and last until she's ready to come back.  The situation is really unpredictable at this point - you just don't know what will happen.

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Old 04-08-2011, 10:10 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annekevdbroek View Post

Well, this is less about me and more about my nanny. Currently I work 4 days per week full-time (11 hours including my commute, 4 days per week). My nanny has just told me she is expecting twins in October. Actually, he 40th week is in mid-October. She is hoping to continue working but I have serious worries. I am a single-mom and going through a lot this year. Because I have only so much work flexibility, a dependable nanny is critical. Now, she is a dream - a real modern Mary Poppins. So, I desperately want to make things work for her. I had agreed previously that if she had a baby she would be welcome to bring the baby w/ her to work. But I am worried, and I am concerned that her expectations (and likely mine) are unrealistic. I have two boys, they will be nearly 5 and age 8 when the twins are due. She has no other children and little to no experience w/ babies. For example, she seemed surprised when I talked w/ her about how little newborns sleep and how long that sleepless period lasts. She thought they "woke up" every two hours and that was it - that they went right back to sleep. My impression was that she was not aware of how exhausting the newborn stage is. I only have experience w/ singletons, so it is hard for me to know how it is with twins.

 

So - a few questions - and I would very much appreciate your thoughts/feedback about how to navigate this situation.

 

1. I have to leave for work at 7:00am possibly earlier (6:30) with some work changes that are due to take place NLT August. My feeling was that it would be impossible for her to make it to the house by that hour. Thoughts?

 

That depends on where she lives and how far she has to commute. That doesn't factor in the babies temperaments. My nanny had a single 2 year old and had a hard time getting to our house by 8 am.  She had a 40 minute commute and her daughter was a late sleeper.  However infants are pretty easy to transport unlike a toddler.

 

2. Can she realistically care for twins and two older children? Remember, I am paying her for childcare, so it isn't exactly the same as her being home with some kids of her own. I need to depend on her to take my kids to/from preschool and school, appointments, etc.

 

It was a challenge for our nanny to make it work with a 2 year old but she did.  Though that could be tough if you expect her to take your kids to the DR's, dentist that could be tough with 4 kids.  What kind of sports/extracurricular activities do your kids do. Having twins to entertain in hockey rink could be hard. Brrrrrr!! Also are ok if she drops your kids off at say a sports practice and takes the twin to park?

 

My bigger question would be does she (or you) have a car that supports 2 rear facing infant seats, a booster for the 5 year old and enough room for 8 year old plus all the "stuff" that goes along with it-diaper bags, double stroller, sports equipment, etc

 

3. How likely is bed rest w/ a high risk twin pregnancy? It seems likely to me. I have to talk to her and encourage her to talk to her doctor about this more specifically. She is 40 and has fibroids and has had multiple miscarriages in the past. She has already had an epsiode of unexplained bleeding at 12 weeks (which stopped and all was ok, thank goodness).

 

Who knows really?  This just a risk you need decide is worth taking. I have known woman with really healthy pregnancies and then bam-30 weeks their blood pressure spikes and they are on bed rest.

 

4. If you were in a similar situation as a nanny and had twins, at what point (if ever) did you feel like returning to work on a 1230 - 530 schedule would have been realistic. (I can arrange alternate care for the kids for the morning, as one possible scenario.)

 

Thanks for any thoughts. Any resources you have that I can pass to her, advise, encouragement, etc.would be most welcome. I really want to make it work for all of us, but I am getting very very worried.

 

No advice for her but as mom who has used a nanny with her own child I would ask the following:

 

Are you offering maternity leave? How long will she be out? What will you do during that time? Do you pay for worker comp insurance?  Do you carry the needed insurance if she is hurt  or hurst someone else while driving as part of her job?

 

Have you sat down, just the two of you and *really* talked about it? She's nanny with no infant experience and on top of it she is 40 and it sounds like this is a hard won pregnancy. I think you need to be pretty specific and talk about some "real life" what if scenarios.

  • What will happen if the twins are sick?  
  • Will she still come if your kids have colds?
  • How will she handle adaptating her kids schedules to match your own (feeding, naps, etc

 

Couple of other things:

  • will her job description change at all? Not sure if you expect her to do specific things-x amount of outside time, doing your kids laundry, etc? Are you willing to adjust your expecations?
  • Will her salary/hourly rate change? You are currently paying for personalized care. She will now be devoting considerable less time/attention on your children. Does that matter to you?
  • Infants are one thing, toddlers are another.  What are your long term goals?  Do your foresee her staying for a year, 2? 3? 

 

Our nanny and I have had bumpy times when our kids didn't get along, times when my son felt like her child was getting all the attention or he was getting neglected and times when I felt that way too. There were times when I felt like we were expected to make things work for her but on our dime.  She once asked if she could sign her daughter up for dance during her work hours which would have meant I would have been paying her to drive my son a half an hour after school and then sit in a dance studio for an hour and then commute home another half hour.  3 days week. This meant my son could not have play dates, or any other after school activity on those days. But overall it has been wonderful experience.  I am now a SAHM but we remain close and our kids are like siblings. They will always be a part of our lives.

 

Thanks!



 


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Old 04-08-2011, 10:23 AM
 
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*Shakes Magic 8 Ball*

 

Outlook not so good


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Old 04-08-2011, 10:38 AM
 
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There are a lot of potential problems with this... 

 

Some women go full term with zero problems in a twin pregnancy.  Most don't.  My DP had a super healthy pregnancy but had to stop work at her desk job at 32 weeks because she just didn't have the energy to make it through the day.  Her sister worked in a daycare center during her twin pregnancy, and had to quit work at 28 wks and go on full bedrest at 31 weeks.  These things can happen with zero warning - suddenly nanny goes into labor early, goes to the hospital, and lands herself on bedrest for weeks or months.  You must have a backup plan, starting ASAP.  

 

DP tried for a vaginal birth and was a good candidate for it, but ended up with a LOOOOONG vaginal birth and a c-section, with babies in the hospital for 9 days (and they are very very healthy, it could be way worse)  She was not recovered enough to work until 8wks or so, even part time, just due to pure physical healing time.  She went back to work part time at 12 weeks and full time at about 4.5 months.  I am a SAHM, so that means we had two parents home for the first 12 weeks.  It was still exhausting, though way better than it would have been!

 

I'm now  caring for the two 4.5month old twins and one 2.5yo who has very few time commitments, and it's starting to work now.  Barely.  There are lots of times when she has to wait, sometimes an hour or more, to get my full attention because I have two babies who are freaking out for whatever reason.  It happens less and less as the boys get older, but it still happens.  I think by 6mo I'd be comfortable enough with my ability to give adequate care to consider being a nanny to children other than the twins.

 

1. I have to leave for work at 7:00am possibly earlier (6:30) with some work changes that are due to take place NLT August. My feeling was that it would be impossible for her to make it to the house by that hour. Thoughts?

 

That much I could do.  My twins sleep great in their carseats, I could pack them up and be somewhere by any hour, really, assuming I went to bed early enough.  

 

2. Can she realistically care for twins and two older children? Remember, I am paying her for childcare, so it isn't exactly the same as her being home with some kids of her own. I need to depend on her to take my kids to/from preschool and school, appointments, etc.

 

Yeahh...eventually.  Probably not for the first 6mo to a year.  I care for my older child, of course, but I wouldn't be wiling to accept payment for it right now.  Right now I mostly keep her out of trouble, fed, and entertained  (with TV, too often, though I don't like it)

 

3. How likely is bedrest w/ a high risk twin pregnancy? It seems likely to me. I have to talk to her and encourage her to talk to her doctor about this more specifically. She is 40 and has fibroids and has had multiple miscarriages in the past. She has already had an epsiode of unexplained bleeding at 12 weeks (which stopped and all was ok, thank goodness).

 

Modified bedrest, at least, is fairly likely.  She may not go on full bedrest, but she may be required to take it easy to the point where she can't care for your children.  This could happen at any time, but is most likely from 28-36wks.

 

4. If you were in a similar situation as a nanny and had twins, at what point (if ever) did you feel like returning to work on a 1230 - 530 schedule woudl have been realistic. (I can arrange alternate care for the kids for the morning, as one possible senario.)

 

My DP would have been physically comfortable returning to her desk job at 8wks.  Her sister who had a vaginal birth was comfortable returning to her job in childcare at 6wks, but she did not bring her twins with her (they have a sitter).  They are both under 30 and bounce back fast, it could certainly be longer.  And neither had to care for the twins while performing their jobs. 


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Old 04-08-2011, 01:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annekevdbroek View Post

Well, this is less about me and more about my nanny. Currently I work 4 days per week full-time (11 hours including my commute, 4 days per week). My nanny has just told me she is expecting twins in October. Actually, he 40th week is in mid-October. She is hoping to continue working but I have serious worries. I am a single-mom and going through a lot this year. Because I have only so much work flexibility, a dependable nanny is critical. Now, she is a dream - a real modern Mary Poppins. So, I desperately want to make things work for her. I had agreed previously that if she had a baby she would be welcome to bring the baby w/ her to work. But I am worried, and I am concerned that her expections (and likely mine) are unrealistic. I have two boys, they will be nearly 5 and age 8 when the twins are due. She has no other children and little to no experience w/ babies. For example, she seemed suprised when I talked w/ her about how little newborns sleep and how long that sleepless period lasts. She thought they "woke up" every two hours and that was it - that they went right back to sleep. My impression was that she was not aware of how exhausting the newborn stage is. I only have experience w/ singletons, so it is hard for me to know how it is with twins.

 

So - a few questions - and I would very much appreciate your thoughts/feedback about how to navigate this situation.

 

1. I have to leave for work at 7:00am possibly earlier (6:30) with some work changes that are due to take place NLT August. My feeling was that it would be impossible for her to make it to the house by that hour. Thoughts?

 

This would have been doable for me. My twinkies were early risers. Some are not, hard to know ahead of time.

 

2. Can she realistically care for twins and two older children? Remember, I am paying her for childcare, so it isn't exactly the same as her being home with some kids of her own. I need to depend on her to take my kids to/from preschool and school, appointments, etc.

 

Again, I dont have older kids. BUT as a PP said. Car seats alone will take a large vehicle. Her own twins will have a lot of appointments, and even more if premature. I was so tired the first few months, it was exhausting. I cant imagine caring for older kids more than the basics for awhile. If she is nursing, she will be tied to that schedule/or on demand- it takes up a LOT of time......

 

3. How likely is bedrest w/ a high risk twin pregnancy? It seems likely to me. I have to talk to her and encourage her to talk to her doctor about this more specifically. She is 40 and has fibroids and has had multiple miscarriages in the past. She has already had an epsiode of unexplained bleeding at 12 weeks (which stopped and all was ok, thank goodness).

 

50/50- but if she is older and has health concerns already, even higher. Bedrest can also come on suddenly and could leave you in the lurch. I started bedrest at 21 weeks....twins were born at 31+ and hospitalized for 1.5 months.

 

 

4. If you were in a similar situation as a nanny and had twins, at what point (if ever) did you feel like returning to work on a 1230 - 530 schedule woudl have been realistic. (I can arrange alternate care for the kids for the morning, as one possible senario.)

 

I did not attempt to return to work until my two were 2. They were premature and had health problems. Also, child care for two children was high.

 

Thanks for any thoughts. Any resources you have that I can pass to her, advise, encoruagement, etc.would be most welcome. I really want to make it work for all of us, but I am getting very very worried.

 

 

You seem like a great caring employer with honest worries that are realistic given the situation. I have nannied and I have twins. But never done both at the same time....I can honestly say that the first year my twins took A LOT of time, some of it was dealign with prematurity issues, but some was just getting on a parenting 'curve' that first time parents have, as well as the sleep deprivation of a newborn infants.

 

I would be upfront with her about your concerns and absolutely have a plan B  (and C or D) for if she cant come back to work, if she does come back to work with the twins, if she finds after they are born is is not workign for her, if after the twins are born it is not working out for you and your kids....etc.

 

As PP said- what kind of maternity leave? (if she has a C section it could be 8+ weeks requested by the Dr) What if she has babies in the NICU? What plans do you have if she/her twins are sick? How will it impact your DC schedule/routine to  have to take along two babies? How would your DC handle having to be patient and wait for little babies to be fed/changed/crying/etc?

 

I would also find the local twin group. Maybe she can find someone that would watch the twins as back up care and/or for part of the day so she can focus on your DC? Or maybe they will know of a temporary nanny while yours recovers from delivery?

 

 

Thanks!



 

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Old 04-08-2011, 03:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all so much! To answer a few questions:

1. No, she doesn't have a car large enough to transport 4 kids in appropriate seats. I don't think her car is even large enough to transport all the gear that twins need (IMHO). Its a lease and she is stuck w/it. Because the driving is very short distance (less than 2 miles for everything each way) I was wiling to buy a large, old, SUV for the purpose of getting everyone around. Her car was really bad in the snow anyhow - so a big beater Suburban was looking pretty suitable to have parked here for nanny use.

2. I cannot afford to, nor am I willing to, hire a mother's helper for the nanny. Nannys in this area are extremely expensive and I can *barely* afford it as it is.

3. My youngest will start kinder in 2012. The arrangments will change at that time, with me using before and after school care of some sort, but not a nanny. This will save me something like 2k a month. So, whatever arrangements I make are only for the next year.

4. She has paid vacation days and sick days, which have at this point been exhausted for how long she's been working for me. I pay her when I am on vacation too. She is salaried, not hourly (unless I owe her overtime). She does not have paid maternity leave and there is no way I could pay it to her as well as pay another caretaker.

5. I've encouraged her to get in contact with the  MOM group. I don't think she has done so. As I said, she is very excited but I think at this point not entirely realistic about how challening having two newborns is going to be. 

 

I've decided that I am going to have to let her go in August before school starts. I totally appreciate her need to make her pregnancy primary, and would never ever encourage her to do otherwise, but I have to look after my babies too. And that means I have to have someone who is available to them, and dependable to me so I can work (and take care of them by having a job and income). I do have back-up plans, several, but they are not suitable for long-term arrangements. This week when she was out unexpectedly due to bleeding I pretty much tapped out my available back-up plans for a while I can only ask friends, neighbors, etc. for so much, and only be late or leave early at work so much, and on top of that one of my kids was sick Monday, and I was just plain exhausted because it made the daily routine for the week about 1000x more complicated. I plan to meet w/ her next week to discuss it. I feel sick about it, so sad. But I just cannot see any other way realistically for this to work. If she were suddenly put on bedrest (and isn't that usually how it happens?) I would be completely at wits end and would not have time to make other arrangements. I already had one bad nanny situation that led to 3 months of hell before I found our current fabulous nanny.

 

I feel like I am being mean, but I can't think of any workable solution.

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Old 04-08-2011, 03:51 PM
 
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Do you have a work agreement or contract?  Was it open ended or was for a specific period of time? I ask be cause you may be liable for unemployment and/or unlawful termination. Be VERY careful on how you let her go.  Unless your contract was very specific and/or you can prove that her pregnancy in some way violates the terms of the contract (ie: she can no longer fulfill the majority of the job requirements and there are no reasonable allowances to be made) she could very well have a case against you. If you didn't have a contract at all that could be even more problematic.

 

If you have been employing nanny's legally/above the table for a long period time you may have enough unemployment "banked" to cover if she files. If you haven't you may see a huge increase in your quarterly UE payments.  If this has all  been "under the table" and she files you could be in even more financial trouble.

 

I did everything above board, had a lawyer write my contract, paid all my taxes, bought extra insurance for the car, etc.  I had to fire a nanny "for cause" and she still won her first unemployment case.  I had to pay thru the nose even though I appealed.  I eventually won my case but our budget took a huge hit. My UE rate went back down but I didn't get the months oat higher rate back.

 

Your state may have different laws so YMMV, of course! 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by annekevdbroek View Post

Thank you all so much! To answer a few questions:

1. No, she doesn't have a car large enough to transport 4 kids in appropriate seats. I don't think her car is even large enough to transport all the gear that twins need (IMHO). Its a lease and she is stuck w/it. Because the driving is very short distance (less than 2 miles for everything each way) I was wiling to buy a large, old, SUV for the purpose of getting everyone around. Her car was really bad in the snow anyhow - so a big beater Suburban was looking pretty suitable to have parked here for nanny use.

2. I cannot afford to, nor am I willing to, hire a mother's helper for the nanny. Nannys in this area are extremely expensive and I can *barely* afford it as it is.

3. My youngest will start kinder in 2012. The arrangments will change at that time, with me using before and after school care of some sort, but not a nanny. This will save me something like 2k a month. So, whatever arrangements I make are only for the next year.

4. She has paid vacation days and sick days, which have at this point been exhausted for how long she's been working for me. I pay her when I am on vacation too. She is salaried, not hourly (unless I owe her overtime). She does not have paid maternity leave and there is no way I could pay it to her as well as pay another caretaker.

5. I've encouraged her to get in contact with the  MOM group. I don't think she has done so. As I said, she is very excited but I think at this point not entirely realistic about how challening having two newborns is going to be. 

 

I've decided that I am going to have to let her go in August before school starts. I totally appreciate her need to make her pregnancy primary, and would never ever encourage her to do otherwise, but I have to look after my babies too. And that means I have to have someone who is available to them, and dependable to me so I can work (and take care of them by having a job and income). I do have back-up plans, several, but they are not suitable for long-term arrangements. This week when she was out unexpectedly due to bleeding I pretty much tapped out my available back-up plans for a while I can only ask friends, neighbors, etc. for so much, and only be late or leave early at work so much, and on top of that one of my kids was sick Monday, and I was just plain exhausted because it made the daily routine for the week about 1000x more complicated. I plan to meet w/ her next week to discuss it. I feel sick about it, so sad. But I just cannot see any other way realistically for this to work. If she were suddenly put on bedrest (and isn't that usually how it happens?) I would be completely at wits end and would not have time to make other arrangements. I already had one bad nanny situation that led to 3 months of hell before I found our current fabulous nanny.

 

I feel like I am being mean, but I can't think of any workable solution.



 


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Old 04-08-2011, 03:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks - I do have a contract. I am going to talk w/ her. When she first told me she was expecting that I would let her go. I would be happy to keep her if she made other childcare arrangements for her twins, if it gets down to the legal nitty gritty. The contract does not say she can bring her children to work with her.

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Old 04-08-2011, 08:23 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annekevdbroek View Post

Thanks - I do have a contract. I am going to talk w/ her. When she first told me she was expecting that I would let her go. I would be happy to keep her if she made other childcare arrangements for her twins, if it gets down to the legal nitty gritty. The contract does not say she can bring her children to work with her.


 

I understand both your reservations and concerns about this.  So from my experience of having nannies who bring their children to work as well as a mother of twins and 2 young children I will weigh in here.  (I haven't read everything here FYI). 

 

1)  She will need an appropriate maternity leave.  I only took 6 weeks after twins but everyone is different.  If you agreed to 12 weeks then feesably she'd be beyond the more difficult time of having twins. 

 

2)  not all twins are that bad.  I have a 4.5, and 2.5 yr old and twins.  Really they have been a blessing and are way easier than my first 2.  Your expectations have to be different with two and its about impossible to fully AP parent and so i think really it makes it a lot easier on everyone if you have those thoughts.   My babies sleep amazing in their swings and its not an issue.  When the babies are napping (at the same time because we do try to keep them on teh same schedule).  I have all the time to do XYZ with big kids. 

 

3)  Your big kids are old enough to spend some time occupying themselves, as well as the time spent for them helping with new babies may be fun for them and a very helpful thing for your nanny.   think about how much help your 8 year old could be (if you see them enjoying babies).   So your children could learn some great skills for later in life about helping to care for little ones or helping out in general.    Just a thought it could help teach some patience and skills to your older children and really being very helpful to your nanny.  (Not saying that they will be her personal slaves but in generally I think its a good concept to learn for older kids). 

 

4)  You could always discuss with your nanny about maybe dropping her pay rates if she brings her children along.  You stated that she does great with your children and she will find her own rhythm with hers in the mix as well if given the opprotunity.   It may take some time to get a routine down but its possible. 

 

5)  Bedrest... doesn't happen for all twin moms.  We had ours at home at 40 weeks.  I was on modified restrictions but nothing bad.  Still able to take kids out and about and cook/light cleaning etc.  (I was high risk due to history of PTL, cervical changes)

 

Good luck in your decision.  Just know you can be flexible and try to make it work. 
 

 


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Old 04-09-2011, 09:38 AM
 
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I have not read all the PP, so forgive me if I am being repetitive.

 

I have four kids of my own, including a set of twins now 18 months old. When the twins were born, the older two were 5.5 and almost 4, so not quite as old as your kids, but not too far off. 

 

My twin pregnancy was a nightmare. I had "unexplained bleeding" early on, then a huge subchorionic hemorrhage at 13 weeks which landed me on bedrest from week 13 to 24 or so. Just when things started to look up, and I started to believe that we would actually have twins who would come home (versus being stillborn), I developed HELLP syndrome (a variation of pre-eclampsia, where eventually your liver and kidneys fail. Not pretty, to say the least.) Fortunately, I was annoying enough to ask to be seen, got steroid shots for the babies' lungs, and they were healthy when delivered at 32.5 weeks by emergency c-section. This, for the record, was NOT AT ALL what I had in mind ... I was of the no-interventions camp, but didn't end up there AT ALL. 23 NICU days later, we all came home (36 weeks' gestational age). I was a WRECK. Emotionally, physically, etc. And I had my husband, both my parents, and a full-time nanny to help with the two olders. Oh, and did I mention a night nanny five nights a week, too??? 

 

I don't mean to sound so negative, but the scenario you are describing is not that different than what we had. I will say, without day and nighttime nannies, we could not have enjoyed even one minute of our twins. As it was, after the hormonal roller-coaster of the first 4 weeks or so, we DID enjoy them ... with essentially 2 FTEs hired help and two helpful grandparents IN THE HOUSE all the time.

 

The idea that your nanny is going to be able to care for herself, her newborn (hopefully full-term!) twins, and your two kids is what I would gently call a pipe dream. 

 

If I were you, I would have an honest conversation to tell her how much you like her and support her, what a good child care provider she has been, etc., but that you require something different going forward -- specifically someone who can be reliably, 100% focused on your two children during working hours. You wish her the best, and look for her input on (xyz -- maybe help in hiring/training someone new? etc) And you will give her a written, glowing recommendation when she is ready for her next position. 

 

You will need to be a little careful in how you word this, so as not to make it sound like you are firing her solely because she is pregnant, but I think you have reasons that are valid. I'm sure that someone else here will have other input on potential legal issues if you have a contract, etc. But usually, in a case like this, you haven't written anything in a contract that would address this particular scenario ... and you already have the bleeding issue -- I'm sure she missed work for that, yes? -- plus maybe you prefer that a provider NOT bring her children to work (I would ... but that's just me ... I want my nanny to be focused on our kids and our household, not her kids, while I am paying her. Not trying to be mean or rude ... but this is her JOB. If the only scenario possibly meant my nanny brought her child to work, I would pay her less -- in a sense, to compensate for her savings in not paying for her own nanny or daycare.) 

 

OK I have babbled far too long, but I think your concerns are valid and your instincts are on the money. Ask more around here about careful language due to pregnancy issue -- and consider having things in writing just to make it all good in the end.

 

GL!!! HTH. I am sorry that you are in this squeeze, it sounds like you really love your nanny as a person and wish her well, but just have to have your family's needs front-and-center. I hope it all works out nicely and everyone is happy in the end.

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Old 04-11-2011, 06:03 PM
 
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You've had some great responces, so I'll just add that there is no way that I could have cared for any additional children beyond my own newborn twins.  I needed extra help for caring for myself!


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Old 04-12-2011, 01:13 AM
 
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i was single when i had twins. i also took care of my older children when i had the newborns. babies times 2 is what they say. but my babies were easier  to take care of then a 1 baby that needs more 24/7 care then the  2 did .

i would rather have an attentive 12 year old babysitter then a distracted 17 year old babysitter. (biased opinion) or a newly  twin mom then one that  has 3? its all just related to the specific pregnancy and baby(s). of course my friends with single babies would say they would rather have women with no babies taking care of their child then one with 1. and twins is just out of the question....  so the answer is, just how are you going to let her go in a fair, respectable & legal way. and since there is rarely legal contract in babysitting, go with fair.

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Old 04-12-2011, 06:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am meeting with her tomororw. My plan at this point is to encourage her to take time off starting about 2 months before her due date, so I can reasonably get someone in place before school starts. She has just begun her second trimester and already has significant edema. I am quite worried about her staying healthy during this pregnancy.

 

Anyhow, and then my plan is to tell her to call me at 4 months after the babies arrive and give me a month's notice if she thinks she can/wants to come back. At that point I'll need from her a plan of how she will cope w/ my kid's sick days, her kid's sick days, helping my eldgest with homework, etc. I miss enough work as it is for issues w/ my own kids and can't afford to have her sick kid's added to the bunch. Anyhow, this way the door is open for her to come back at some point if it seems managable. I don't think paying her less, as someone suggested, is fair, since it is still her time that I am paying for. I also think this would potentially create resentment and ill feelings.

 

I mentioned to her this morning that when my youngest was an infant I sometimes ended up going 3 or 4 days w/o the chance to shower. She was shocked. I think she really doesn't know what to expect. She hasn't nannied infants before, and even that is quite different from caring for a newborn (or two!) around the clock. As a nanny you go home after work and get a break, can take care of your own needs, etc. So, I think letting her decide after the babies arrive what she feels capable of doing will be most fair and flexible. And that allows me to hire a replacement for 6 months minimum, which I also think is more workable than about anything else I can come up with.

 

Four&Me - I get what you are saying. I had no problem hiring someone w/ children. When I was looking for a nanny I talked to several applicants who had child/children that they would bring to work with them. The difference here is 1) twins 2) has no prior experience w/ infant care 3) newborn twins - so she is trying to learn about taking care of her babies at the same time as taking care of my kids. First babies are overwhelming for the vast majority of parents. I actually saw applicants who already had children as having many advantages, since they knew what was involved with taking care of kids. 

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