Bad feeling about nanny/sitter... update post #44 - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 56 Old 10-19-2010, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So our old sitter had to move away, so we are on day 2 of new nanny. I feel very apprehensive about it, even though I can't tell you exactly why.

On paper she sounded like a dream-- she also does housecleaning on the side, has great references, etc. During the interview, she seemed very professional, and we felt that was a good thing, given our issues with the old sitter.

It was wonderful to come home to a mostly clean downstairs yesterday-- and she did so much without even being asked.

However, she just doesn't seem very warm. DH (who works from home, so is around during the day) noticed this as well. Old sitter would scoop up DS as soon as she came in, and his eyes would light up like he'd seen his best friend. This nanny doesnt really seem to want to play with him if she can help it.

Would you give it more time (a few weeks?) or find somoene else ASAP?

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#2 of 56 Old 10-19-2010, 07:01 PM
 
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I think I would give it a few weeks. If she had already bonded with your son in just a few days, I'd be concerned about that. It takes a while to form a relationship.
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#3 of 56 Old 10-19-2010, 10:46 PM
 
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It would not hurt to keep looking around, to have a backup in case this one does not work out. You need to go with your gut on this. In the meantime, it must be comforting to have your DH there to check in regularly.

It may be that she just needs a bit of time to get comfortable, as the first weeks can be stressful and awkward.

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#4 of 56 Old 10-19-2010, 11:29 PM
 
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I would give it some time, though I suppose looking for a back up just in case couldn't hurt. I do babysitting and childcare, and taking care of kids when their parents are around can make things a lot more awkward and uncomfortable for me.

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#5 of 56 Old 10-19-2010, 11:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks you guys. I came home today, DS hadn't napped at all. He really does need to be rocked to sleep, but apparently she keeps laying him down and is suprised when he wakes up.

I did have a chat with her about how he likes to be put down for a nap this morning. She mentioned that she had never had a kid this age that needed to be rocked? She just texted asking to be paid earlier this week (we normally do fridays).

I"m just so frustrated, hormonal and exhausted. Today was an awful day at work. HR is telling me that I might not get FMLA for the new baby, since they are so close together, and my boss is getting irritated with my Dr's appointments, and I got a less than stellar mid-year review. My son has been crying all evening since he hasn't slept, and we are looking at another sleepless night.

Maybe it's just that stage in pregnancy, but I'm about ready to walk out of my job. I'm so, so very tired.

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#6 of 56 Old 10-19-2010, 11:48 PM
 
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I think you should listen to your gut no matter what happens. Something is setting off alarms about this person, and you shouldn't ignore it no matter how illogical it seems. Read Protecting the Gift by Gavin de Becker for more reasons why you should never, ever, ever ignore your initial instincts about a person even if it seems crazy or irrational.

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#7 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 12:19 AM
 
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I suggest looking for another sitter, especially with a second baby on the way if you want him to continue to be rocked to sleep. Some of this is probably what goes on at the begining of a relationship with a new child, but some the rocking to sleep and having him be more independent than he has been in the past with his play sounds more like a difference in how kids should be cared for. On the other hand, if he is laying down without crying but just wakes up frequently she may be able to get him to a point where he will just lay down to sleep and stay asleep for a long period of time and that may be nice for when you have another baby. I am not sure how people do it with more than one though so I wouldn't know. If he is not doing a lot of crying then I think you should let them build the relationship, unless the rocking and sleep becomes a deal breaker. If she doesn't warm up very quickly though then I think you should find someone else. If that does happen be sure to be very upfront about what you will expect with regards to sleep and play. I would suggest putting less emphasis on the cleaning (which many sahm's don't even do) and more on the relationship and the babies being happy.
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#8 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 12:33 AM
 
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Always, always trust your instincts--even when you're exhausted. Hang in there--

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#9 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 12:48 AM
 
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s you sound so tired. Id look for a new nanny. If you dont think this is the right girl, its not. Its really strange that she would have never known a 1yo to need to be rocked.

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#10 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:01 PM
 
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I'd look for someone new.
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#11 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:06 PM
 
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Yeah not knowing about rocking a one year old is really weird. Maybe it is time to find someone else. This shouldn't be causing you so much stress, she's supposed to be making things easier. And not every nanny is for every family. There are a lot of mainstream families who wont hire me for example because I refuse to do any kind of sleep training. It sounds like this may be a difference in child raising beliefs and not just her being new and warming up to the situation.

I hope things get better/less stressful for you soon.

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#12 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:13 PM
 
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About the not rocking a 1yo - has she only worked for pretty mainstream parents before? Kids who have CIO for naps and such? Maybe you could talk to her about that, or ask her to read some stuff about how you parent.

I agree though that you should start looking, and maybe talk to her about how you parent, and how and why its different than the way others parent (in a way thats not disrespectful of the way others parent of course) to make it as easy as possible until you find someone new.
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#13 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:19 PM
 
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thanks you guys. I came home today, DS hadn't napped at all. He really does need to be rocked to sleep, but apparently she keeps laying him down and is suprised when he wakes up.

I did have a chat with her about how he likes to be put down for a nap this morning. She mentioned that she had never had a kid this age that needed to be rocked? She just texted asking to be paid earlier this week (we normally do fridays).

I"m just so frustrated, hormonal and exhausted. Today was an awful day at work. HR is telling me that I might not get FMLA for the new baby, since they are so close together, and my boss is getting irritated with my Dr's appointments, and I got a less than stellar mid-year review. My son has been crying all evening since he hasn't slept, and we are looking at another sleepless night.

Maybe it's just that stage in pregnancy, but I'm about ready to walk out of my job. I'm so, so very tired.
I couldn't read this and not offer hugs to you. I agree with what others have said, I think you should listen to your instincts and start looking for another nanny.

Rachel, mom to Eliana (age 3)
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#14 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:21 PM
 
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it sounds like she may be wanting to leave anyway. i could be wrong though. when i was a nanny and knew i wasn't happy and wanted to give notice or quit i'd ask to be paid early.

it doesn't sound like a good match to me if she isn't willing to rock the little one to sleep.
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#15 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We've decided to wait out the rest of the week and re-evaluate.

I've been working since DS was 3.5 months old, and he's never batted an eye at my leaving. Today he tried to follow me out to garage. (no tears though, and maybe he thought I was going to the bathroom).

And I also get that it's difficult working with a parent around. My husband is all about do it now and efficiancy. For example this morning we were running a bit late, so I was still getting DS dressed when the sitter showed up. He asked her to wash the bottles (she didn't do them yesterday?) while we watched ds. When we came downstairs though, they weren't done (maybe about half an hour). This kind of thing makes my husband nutty, but I"m more easy going about it. At the same time, it's my husband who has to listen to DS screaming for a bottle because she's trying to wash them while he's awake/hungry.

I just don't know. I don't have any working mom friends IRL, so I"m not sure what is reasonable to expect in a sitter.

At the same time....we are just drowning. Our life is just not working. We are both exhausted all the time. It's worse than just exhaustion-- I know DH and I go to bed hungry some nights because we are too tired to cook, and don't even have time for take out, or by the time we sit down for the night it's 11pm and nothing is open. We both just had poor reviews at work, when last year we were at the tops (or at least middling) of our teams.

The new sitter was supposed to be the first step in a better life (she's supposed to be more expensive, more reliable, work more hours, and do more housework than old sitter), but it's just so disheartening when it's just not working out.

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#16 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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it sounds like she may be wanting to leave anyway. i could be wrong though. when i was a nanny and knew i wasn't happy and wanted to give notice or quit i'd ask to be paid early.

it doesn't sound like a good match to me if she isn't willing to rock the little one to sleep.
I know, I"m worried about this as well. In fact, I was thinking of working from home today, but I have a feeling I'll be calling in sick on friday because she just won't show.

I talked to her this morning-- she seems willing to do the rocking, she just seems really confused by it.

In this area, it could be that she's only worked in mainstream 'babywise' circles before. I know that most of her experience has also been in multi-kid families (like 3, 4+ children). She may not have been required to give so much attention to the youngest of the bunch, yk?

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#17 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:43 PM
 
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In this area, it could be that she's only worked in mainstream 'babywise' circles before. I know that most of her experience has also been in multi-kid families (like 3, 4+ children). She may not have been required to give so much attention to the youngest of the bunch, yk?
I could see this being a HUGE difference, since when I babysat big gangs of kids it was so different than just having one, especially when that 1 was a baby.

It was also tough switching gears a few times. The first baby I babysat was 3mo, and CIO at bedtime (I was 14, didn't know anybetter, don't flame me). Then the next family with a baby baby was a no-CIO, rock baby to bed, lay down with her, etc - it was a HUGE change! I even remember asking them if she cried before she fell asleep, and they just looked at me like I was an alien, LOL! I rocked her to sleep everytime I sat for her, but I wasn't mommy and so there was some crying occasionally (but I never put her down till she was asleep), but it was a BIG difference!

I would still start looking for someone else, and listen to your instincts (they're there for a reason!), and keep talking to her while she's still working for you.
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#18 of 56 Old 10-20-2010, 01:56 PM
 
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Did she not have much experience with little babies before you? I have a lot of experience with little ones who need to be rocked to sleep or need more attention from me as a nanny. Maybe with the next nanny you can make up a little routine and print it out for her so she knows what to do and how to do things. Make sure she knows this and is ok with the ways you do things before you hire her. I normally ask for that when I start and tell the parents I'll follow it as best as baby will let me.
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#19 of 56 Old 10-21-2010, 10:40 PM
 
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Did she come to work today?

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#20 of 56 Old 10-21-2010, 11:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Did she come to work today?
Yeah she did! I guess, I'm just a bit jaded from old sitter. We are in a bit of a conflict over pay-- she was suprised that we took taxes out, but we really can't afford to pay her portion of taxes as well. We are stretching our budget already.

She also seems to think that she should be paid for coming early-- If we ask her to come at 10, and she comes at 9:55, I don't think I should be responsible for paying the extra 5 minutes. Or if she doesn't leave on time. (DH always comes down before 4 to chat about what he's eaten/diapers etc), but yesterday she was showing me pics of her dog for 10 minutes, making me late to my appt!

We did pay her what she wanted this week, but some how i don't think it's fair.

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#21 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 01:33 PM
 
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Yeah she did! I guess, I'm just a bit jaded from old sitter. We are in a bit of a conflict over pay-- she was suprised that we took taxes out, but we really can't afford to pay her portion of taxes as well. We are stretching our budget already.

She also seems to think that she should be paid for coming early-- If we ask her to come at 10, and she comes at 9:55, I don't think I should be responsible for paying the extra 5 minutes. Or if she doesn't leave on time. (DH always comes down before 4 to chat about what he's eaten/diapers etc), but yesterday she was showing me pics of her dog for 10 minutes, making me late to my appt!

We did pay her what she wanted this week, but some how i don't think it's fair.
Yeah, no. She should not get paid for milking the clock. If she is supposed to be there at 10 and she comes at 9:55, she can sit in her car and listen to the radio if she doesnt want to come in bc shes not being paid. As someone who works in someone elses home, that is completely on her.

The tax thing with your other girl is kinda strange. Was it something that wasnt discussed beforehand?

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#22 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 01:53 PM
 
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About the not rocking a 1yo - has she only worked for pretty mainstream parents before? Kids who have CIO for naps and such? Maybe you could talk to her about that, or ask her to read some stuff about how you parent.
Not every kid who goes to sleep with no rocking has CIO. Neither of my kids would tolerate being rocked/held when they wanted sleep, but they sure as heck didn't CIO.

OP, I would give it a few weeks, but have a back up just in case.
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#23 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 02:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Did she come to work today?
well.. she didn't come to work today . She texted that she wouldn't be coming in, but I have no idea about next week.

I think we are really awful interviewers.

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#24 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 02:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The tax thing with your other girl is kinda strange. Was it something that wasnt discussed beforehand?
the tax thing is with the new sitter. We should have discussed it but didn't.

I don't know what her old employer was doing-- she mentioned that she wanted taxes witheld. But when we gave her the check, she said that that she expected to get the agreed rate to show up on her paycheck.

I feel like a total moron. This may all be a moot point if she doesn't come back ever. Was this taught in the home ec class that I skipped for AP physics in highschool?

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#25 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 02:19 PM
 
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I think you should listen to your gut no matter what happens. Something is setting off alarms about this person, and you shouldn't ignore it no matter how illogical it seems. Read Protecting the Gift by Gavin de Becker for more reasons why you should never, ever, ever ignore your initial instincts about a person even if it seems crazy or irrational.
Find a new nanny that you feel good around.

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#26 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 02:45 PM
 
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Yeah,find a new nanny! Soon! I'm sorry but I don't like the way she's expecting to be paid extra for HER showing up early. She's the one who decided to come in earlier and deciding to stay late. Besides what does she want to charge for that extra 5 minutes? As a nanny I was often a few minutes early or stayed a few minutes late and was never paid extra and it was never expected either.
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#27 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 03:05 PM
 
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I feel like a total moron. This may all be a moot point if she doesn't come back ever. Was this taught in the home ec class that I skipped for AP physics in highschool?
LOL, no, it wasn't taught in home ec. (I took LOTS of home ec classes, it never came up.)

Have you thought about temporarily cutting back on retirement contributions or otherwise reworking your budget to allow for more hours of childcare? Or housecleaning help? Or more convenience foods? It really worries me that there are nights you and your DH are not eating. You are pregnant! I am due in Jan. and I eat all the time!

You might also find that a childcare center works better for you than the nanny. You'd have drop off and pick up, but your house would stay as clean as you left it
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#28 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 03:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah,find a new nanny! Soon! I'm sorry but I don't like the way she's expecting to be paid extra for HER showing up early. She's the one who decided to come in earlier and deciding to stay late. Besides what does she want to charge for that extra 5 minutes? As a nanny I was often a few minutes early or stayed a few minutes late and was never paid extra and it was never expected either.
ok. I'm glad to know this isn't normal.

with the issues I've been having, I'm kind of afraid to say anything to her. I told dh just to pay what ever she was asking, but find out where she was coming up with her numbers.

I did once work at a restaurant where you clocked in and out at a register, so your minutes were counted. But I've also tutored, and there it didn't matter if you showed up at 9:55 instead of 10.

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#29 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 04:19 PM
 
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ok. I'm glad to know this isn't normal.

with the issues I've been having, I'm kind of afraid to say anything to her. I told dh just to pay what ever she was asking, but find out where she was coming up with her numbers.

I did once work at a restaurant where you clocked in and out at a register, so your minutes were counted. But I've also tutored, and there it didn't matter if you showed up at 9:55 instead of 10.
With the issues your having it sounds like you'll be looking for a different situation. However, I want to give you a boost that YOU are the employer. YOU are the one with the job and you can set the terms.

Yes, you need to be clear up front and it sounds like you know some good questions to ask now - but it sounds like she is running the show. You don't just "pay her what she asks" if it wasn't your agreement OR you had a different understanding. You talk about it. You are offering a rate, if she wants taxes taken out and you agree to do that, it will be taken out of that rate and she will be paid less. Just like the pay check you and I get from our employers. Most companies quote gross pay, not net pay so this shouldn't be any surprise and YOU may need to educate her.

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#30 of 56 Old 10-22-2010, 04:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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LOL, no, it wasn't taught in home ec. (I took LOTS of home ec classes, it never came up.)

Have you thought about temporarily cutting back on retirement contributions or otherwise reworking your budget to allow for more hours of childcare? Or housecleaning help? Or more convenience foods? It really worries me that there are nights you and your DH are not eating. You are pregnant! I am due in Jan. and I eat all the time!

You might also find that a childcare center works better for you than the nanny. You'd have drop off and pick up, but your house would stay as clean as you left it
I know, I know. We are looking to make a change. The new nanny actually does work more hours and have more housework responsibility than the old one, but she would actually have to come into work to make a difference.

We were actually doing ok until i got pregnant again. I know this sounds crazy, but the biggest blow for us was when DS quit nursing. Previously, my husband was able to STTN, because I could do feedings in my sleep, laying down. Now because I have spd, he insists on doing all the night stuff. This threw our already hanging by a thread schedule completely out of whack. DS wakes 3,4,5 times a night, but my husband works an earlier shift to make up hours during the day. We can't go to sleep earlier because we need to work while ds is asleep.

I know the clear answer is day care from 8-5 for ds, but I can't see ds thriving in a multi child environment right now-- maybe in a year or two. Of course I am having another baby so I guess he's gonna learn one way or another.

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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