My Only Way Out

(is to go so far in)

nanny nightmares

Posted by Cauri on January 15, 2007

I’ve been a little out of the loop, as last week was spent in a household where it is perfectly acceptable to eat chocolate for breakfast, and if you whine, shriek, or pound on your little brother, all of your wildest wishes will be granted immediately. I nannied for the week for a family I worked for a couple of years ago, while their current nanny sailed far, far away on a vacation with her family. It’s been a blast watching these kids get older and watching the predictions I made years ago all come true.

When I first worked for them, their two precious little boys weren’t even 2 & 4 yet. It started at 65 hours a week, but anyone who’s ever read The Nanny Diaries knows that it soon amounted to closer to 80. They were terrors, but I was incredibly strict with them, sometimes letting up on Friday afternoons, since I was excited to have a weekend away from them (except for those weekends I was called back for a Saturday night), and after a few weeks, they started to listen to me! The tantrums ceased, and they started to be a lot of fun to be with and take places!

Anyway, long story short, it’s been years since I worked for them full-time. The boys will soon be 6 & 8, and their little sister is 2. I sort of love this new position I have in their lives. I get to be the “superstar” fun babysitter who pops in unexpectedly a few times a year, and they’re usually so excited to play that they just pass out after a couple hours. But last week was a very nice reminder of why I should never get involved in the full-time nanny bizz again.

The 12-hour days were pushed longer and later each and every day, as the mom invented new things she “just had to get done” around the house. By Friday at 6, I was sitting on the couch drifting off to sleep while the kids played around me and the mom would occasionally pass by the living room windows, pretending to do God knows what outside. The kids fought me over every single thing I asked them to do, from eating anything besides candy for breakfast, to putting a coat on before venturing into the 26-degree weather, to doing homework, to getting in the goddamn car or you’re going to be late for school! They’re just horrible monsters, and the week just really confirmed that I’m getting too tired of taking care of other people’s messes.  It is so hard keep my mouth shut about the way some people are raising their children.  And it is so hard to not curse and scream and yell when you’ve been waking up at 5:30 every morning to deal with these little monsters whose parents would pay anything to not have to deal with them themselves.

I guess the lesson of the week was, I’m done.  I’m done with babysitting and nannying, or else I will never want to have my own children.  I have to remind myself that my own children will not be anything like this.  My two-year-old is not going to know what chocolate is!   My children won’t be bombarded with t.v. and videogames.  My children will learn to enjoy picking up a book once in a while, or putting together a puzzle!

I guess this just confirmed that I need to look for a different sort of job in the fall.  Something suited just for me.  Something that doesn’t cater to everyone else’s needs.  Something that’ll allow me to use my creativity and passion for something I enjoy and that other people can benefit from.


One Response to “nanny nightmares”

  1. Melina said

    very interesting. i’m adding in RSS Reader

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