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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'd love some advice or just some sage words on my nanny situation. I picked my nanny based on a gut instinct and professionalism on her part. I had a good feeling about her and was delighted to have her work with our LO.

It started out great, she clearly loved our LO and was incredibly efficient at getting housework done while he napped. But then after about six weeks, she ran into some family issues at home and I noticed she started getting impatient with me. She was still so loving with our LO but would snap at me if I asked a question she didn't like (which was often: "how were his poops today?") or if I gave her instruction.

Soon, it was clear she was always on the defensive with me — I had to tiptoe around how I phrased anything I said to her for fear of offending her. She abruptly quit one day b/c she did something without my knowledge and I told her it made me a bit sad.

Here's the hard part: I miss her! She was so great with our LO even though she was very rude to me. And she did take good care of our house when LO slept. I'm so sad — did I make a mistake? I think I ache b/c I think our LO must miss her!!
 

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How did you make a mistake if she quit?

You miss the help, but it sounds like this nanny was a poor fit. Time to move on and find someone else.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Her quitting was very wishy washy, she offered to come back and stay while we find someone else. But she was so angry and rude with me that I didn't feel comfortable for her to come over anymore.

The mistake I meant was — did I ask too many questions? I always envisioned the nanny relationship would be more of parents/nanny working together.
 

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Ideally, the parent/nanny relationship will be one where the parents and the nanny work together, and communication is an important part of that. If you want to know something about your child's day, asking the person who was there is sort of the logical way to go. (Importantly, I think you also have to acknowledge that debriefing is paid time - you cannot get home, tell your nanny she's off the clock, and then ask her to chat with you for another half an hour.)

Don't have her back. If she can't communicate with you, she can't effectively care for your child. Move on and find someone else.
 

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She may have been good with the baby and the house, but she wasn't good with you. That's a huge part of being a nanny. It's a partnership with parents to care for a child. You need to and deserve to know what is happening with your child during the day. I nannied for years and would never talk that way to a parent. Yes sometimes it was annoying to get calls after work to ask details like if baby pooped or where or where is teddy? But it's part of the job. Keep looking you will find a better fit. No one is perfect, but rudeness is very uncalled for. As a nanny she should know and be good at talking to concerned parents. She should ease you worries not add to them. Your baby will love the next nanny you pick too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the sanity check! To be clear, I never expected de-briefing to happen off the clock. I'd always start the debrief 10 minutes before her end time and never expected her to stay beyond her time (without being paid). The de-brief was really 2 - 3 minutes, just a quick update on his poops, naps, eating for the day.

Anyway thanks for making me feel better about our decision!
 

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As a nanny, I feel it's very unprofessional to act that way with the parents of your charge. They have the right to ask and know everything and anything about their child's day. When my charge was an infant or going through a particular stage (solids, sleep training, potty training, starting to talk), I would keep a pad of paper recording everything about Baby's day. When he slept, how long, if he pooped and when, what he ate (when and how much), things we did (read Shakespeare, took a walk), things he did (said, "Please", climbed the ladder, put his doll to bed), and discipline/temperament (was really calm and happy today, was very fussy today, had 1 time out for hitting the dog). I would leave that pad in an open place, so they could look through it and have the highlights of baby's day right there. And if one of the parents ever asked me to do/not do something with their child, I would always respect their decision - whether I agreed with it or not. That's the job.

I also feel like the nanny/parent relationship is of the utmost importance. It should be a collaboration - all of you working together to raise this child. Sometimes the nanny is more experienced, sometimes the parent is. You discuss and work together. Everyone is parenting gifts, and parenting downfalls. If you're all working together, the child benefits from your mutual strengths, and you can balance out your weaknesses. And in the end, the parents have the final say-so - no if's, and's, or but's. There are things that my employers do with their child that I would do differently, but it isn't my place to correct them. It's my place to take the best care of their child that I possibly can while they're away. Being a nanny is a very complicated role, and employing a nanny can be complicated as well. As a nanny, I'm paid to parent. I give my charge unconditional love, yet I'm paid for my service. I love my charge like my own child, yet I know someday I won't be his nanny. Figuring out when to speak up and when to keep my mouth shut, when to act like a parent and when to clock-out, and the ever so challenging - how do I love him when I know I'll have to say goodbye...well, it's hard. I've been a nanny for years, and every time I have to leave a family (never for bad reasons) my heart breaks. As long as nannies have existed, it's been possibly the most complicated job that has ever been, if only for the reason that one's role is always changing and is never clearly defined.
 

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If a caretaker would answer such questions I would get angry too. My daughter goes to daycare and I always get a short description of the day. "Pooped around 2 in the afternoon, used the toilet the whole day but had one accident so the trousers are changed, was a little cranky before lunch but that was probably hunger as she ate very well and then was fine." If they would not offer such information I would have been very concerned as this is the minimum level I expect, ideally I would also have liked to know things like what she learned or what she said at different points during the day but the basics is fine.
 
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