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Nannying horror stories

(15 Posts)
BestestBrownies Fri 23-Nov-12 01:21:06

I've been temping in London recently whilst I look for the right permanent, long-term Nanny position. It's the first time I've done temping work as have always previously had the next position lined up before leaving the last one, but couldn't do that this time as had to leave DH and take some time out to cope with that.

Quite frankly, I have been gobsmacked by the behaviour I have witnessed (by the parents, not the children), and the way some people think it is acceptable to treat others.

Today I had to terminate a work trial 2 days in because I found the way the mother treated her children so upsetting.

In the past 4 weeks I have heard/witnessed the following:-

"What is WRONG with you? What did I ever do to deserve a devil-child like you?" said by a mother to her 6yo DD sad

"I wish you were our mummy. You never shout at us like she does" said to me by a 5yo charge sad

A mother taking a call from her new BF mid-way through her 7yo DD's 'concert', then coming back to the room 10 mins later and telling her DD to start again, only for the little girl to silently pack away her instrument sad angry

Being told by a mother that it was MY job, not the children's to tidy away their toys because "That's what I'm paying you for".

Discovering during a live-in work trial for a very wealthy family that their housekeeper had fractured her wrist in a fall, but hadn't been permitted any time off to see the doctor about it until nearly a week later, despite being in obvious pain. sad angry shock

What the hell is WRONG with these people? Is this really the standard now or have I just been horribly unlucky?

BestestBrownies Fri 23-Nov-12 13:46:21

OK, guess it is just me having some seriously bad luck then.

minderjinx Fri 23-Nov-12 17:02:33

Bestest - I am sure these experiences are not typical, but a lot of us would recognise something similar to one or two of them over the years. I do think you need to be a bit careful about what you post on here though - some of the things you mention are quite specific and occurring so recently and over such a short time frame, someone could quite easily put the pieces together and work out who you are, and I'm sure you wouldn't want your families to be identifiable by anyone else.

lisad123 Fri 23-Nov-12 17:06:45

I take it you don't have your own children? Your view of being a parent is very rose tinted and none of what you wrote I find shocking apart from house keeper.

Parents are people too, say things they don't mean and act out of character sometimes. None of what you have said would be classes as abusive (apart from devil child if its common thing) and think you might be in for a pasting.

With that in mind I'm getting popcorn and hard hat ready grin

Blondeshavemorefun Fri 23-Nov-12 19:29:26

have to agree and say most of those things are 'normal' and sure most parents on here/in life have said at least one of them

tho the wrist one seems a bit hmm and more fool her tbh for not seeing a doctor and yes as jinx said be careful as you can be identified by this post

and fwiw ive been temping past year and can say hand on heart i have had lovely families who really appreciate me, and thats why i enjoy temping so much, as i go in and help parents and children who need me smile

Bouncey Fri 23-Nov-12 19:49:49

I think these sound pretty bad tbh, apart from the phone call. Ok, my child is only a year old so I haven't experienced all the frustrations many mums have, but to call a child "devil child" is pretty awful, and I agree that children should learn to tidy away their toys. Not abusive, but hardly exemplary parenting.

blueshoes Fri 23-Nov-12 20:56:34

If you are going to judge parents, I would not want you looking after my children. Just turn down those jobs - I am sure you did.

PurpleHeadedMountain Fri 23-Nov-12 23:09:49

Well said blueshoes.

I hardly think any of those class as horror stories; however I find your judgmental attitude quite shocking.

Karoleann Fri 23-Nov-12 23:50:21

I wonder why you're having problems finding a job.....

knowittoowell Fri 23-Nov-12 23:52:51

Yes, you're a nanny OP. You shan't have an opinion, on anything. As a person
working in childcare, posting on childcare board, i mean, just how dare you?!

hmm

Joke, btw... i understand what you're talking about tho and yes, it's pretty standard i think, at least in London. Good luck in finding a new job/career even

Bessie123 Fri 23-Nov-12 23:54:32

I agree your experiences sound shocking, although I am definitely guilty of shouting at my children sometimes when I am tired and frustrated. But I wouldn't mind being judged for it - I know it's not a brilliant way to deal with children.

fraktion Sat 24-Nov-12 00:00:04

I've called DS devil child in exasperation. I've also called him angel about ten times more often...

You can't truly judge a family by trials or temping but it's a good indicator of whether the behaviour will upset you. It sounds like the parents you're working for are very stressed and aren't dealing with their children in the best possible way. You have no evidence that this is systematic. It may be and that would be worrying but it may be that they aren't coping well with whatever uncertainty is in their lives, like recruiting a new nanny.

The housekeeper one is shocking but unless she works 24hpurs surely A&E would have been an option?

Welovecouscous Sat 24-Nov-12 00:28:30

I'm a parent not a nanny and I think these people sound awful. Not ok to say devil child, the wrist thing is against employment law - someone who has had an accident and is in pain is obviously entitled to immediate time off for treatment sad

There are some horrible people about, but luckily most people are nice - next time luckier for you, I hope.

cory Sun 25-Nov-12 12:07:13

They weren't nice examples, but otoh if you judge a family because a 5yo tells you that you don't shout like her parents, then perhaps you aren't terribly used to how children behave?

My ds has playing us off against one another down to a fine art. His favourite trick is trying to guilt trip me by portraying me as an evil harridan who won't let his dad call his soul his own. His dad gets told that he's always nagging and nobody cares. In his calmer moments, ds has even been known to admit that he does this on purpose to wind us up and hoping to take advantage.

Most children will say at some stage or another that their teacher/nanny/childminder/mate's mum is much nicer and they wish they were her child instead. And in the meantime, the teacher's/best friend's mum's/childminder's children will be saying exactly the same thing to her.

sunshinenanny Sun 25-Nov-12 16:19:12

I find the bit about leaving the concert to talk to a boyfriend sadsad but it happens and don't like the idea of 'devil child' but parents do get stressed; Nannies aren't allowed to do this or at least not to direct it at the children and quite rightly so. Otherwise they are in the wrong job! I wouldn't judge too harshly after a couple of days but I agree there are people out there who aren't very nice to work for! you just don't take the job. If you have any real concerns about a child being abused then mumsnet is not the place to talk about it. I don't think this is the case here and of course you can have an opinion but be discreet and proffessional in what you say unless a child is at real risk, then go to the proper authorities.

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