5 Things Your Nanny Wishes You Knew
In an effort to be more gainfully employed once my children went back to school, I took a job as a nanny.
It wasn’t my first go round the nanny pen; I spent time as one in college too.
And I've found, even after adding motherhood to my resume, not much has changed about the job, aside from the pay. When I was a nanny in the 90s, I was lucky to bring home $20 for the day; now that’s what people are making in an hour, at least!
Other than that it involves standard things like cuddling babies, changing diapers, fixing bottles, reading board books, and singing lullabies off key.
So, what else do you need to know before you hire a nanny? Here are some insights from someone who’s been there.
5 Things Your Nanny Wishes You Knew:
Taking care of your kids is our job. We don’t do it just because it’s fun and we probably wouldn’t do it at all if we hit the lottery. Just sayin’. Nannying, like every other job, is just that. Of course we enjoy being around children, and for sure we probably love yours, but we still expect to be paid, reasonably and on time. We want to be respected and treated professionally, and even if we are really good at what we do, we want you to remember that we aren’t you or your spouse or even Grandma and we don’t really want to be. Be respectful of your nanny’s time, pay them fairly and consistently, and don’t expect them to treat your kids the same way you do.
We like to be informed. If baby didn’t sleep well, is feeling icky, seems to be teething, or will not take off his batman costume to save his life, we really want you to let us know that. If you and dad are splitting up, or if you have a really tough work week that is making you a little stabby, that’s good info to give us too. Not because we’re nosy (although I totally am, totally), but because knowing the things that are affecting your child is our job. It will allow us to respond more appropriately to situations as they arise and generally just make caring for your child easier for us, and for them!
It’s okay to check up on us. Call, come home early, use a nanny cam if it will make you feel more comfortable. There’s no need to be sneaky about it, we want you to trust us and feel comfortable that we don't tie your kids to a chair the moment you walk out the door. If calling three times a day is what it takes, then let’s do this!
We aren’t the cleaning lady. Unless, um, you are paying us to also be the cleaning lady. Most nannies are fine with picking up behind baby, cleaning up after meals, maybe even washing a load of baby clothes if needed. But, don’t expect your nanny to sweep your entry or vacuum your stairs, or do anything other than what you hired them for: to care for your child(ren).
Communicate if there is an issue. Sometimes things come up; you’re not happy with the way we fold the onesies, you got a pay cut at work and you may have to cut back on our hours, your child doesn’t like how we sing Single Ladies while we prepare lunch. Issues are gonna come up, and we all understand that. What’s harder to understand is when you let it fester, and then talk to your husband, your BFF, your mom, and all of your Facebook friends about it, which gets you all worked up before you bring it to our attention.
Your relationship with your nanny should be one based on trust and honesty. If you have a problem with something, bring it to her attention immediately and believe that she is going to be open to working with you on it. If she isn’t, maybe you need to look for a new nanny!Read More