I want to fire my live-in maid but no idea how and all the advice I get from other expats is so horrible

(115 Posts)
creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 06:05:00

We have a full-time live in maid. I have never had this before. I hate it.

I really, really want to get rid of her but I have no idea how.

She is aggressively argumentative, criticises everything all the time, never does anything I ask.

On the other hand she does work really hard. I tried to get her to do sensible hours with a break in the middle of the day but she refuses and she is ALWAYS here. Working from 6am to 9pm with me begging her to PLEASE stop and go home or rest or something.

Yesterday she left the gate to the pool unlocked. It was a mistake, and we all make mistakes. But we have small children and this is a mistake that cannot be made. I told her on her first day that the most important part of this job was keeping the gate to the pool locked. When I told her yesterday that it had been left unlocked she first ignored me (because she was embarrassed and didn't want me to get cross - not that I ever have ) and then when I calmly but firmly said "You must remember to always, always lock the gate. This is very important" she got cross and started ranting that she DID always lock it and this was only one time and that I had left my balcony door unlocked last week and blah blah blah...

It is so exhausting. I find I am scared to even mention small things to her because she strops and sulks for days.

Just now she was washing up and asked why I had put the sponge (that she was using) in the wash. I said because it needed washing, and why had she taken it out of the wash? She said she didn't think it had been used for bad jobs so it was fine. I said it needed washing every day or two days and to please take a clean one. She roared with laughter and said that you cannot wash washing up sponges - they are always clean because they are used for washing!! So... she will do exactly what she wants and not wash the sponge.

But if I get rid of her she has no job, no income, family relying on her wage. She will cry and refuse to go and I'll have to make her. I feel like such a bitch sitting in my huge big house with every advantage in the world firing a poor old lady working for minimum wage (actually we pay double, but it's still not much) because she won't do my washing up precisely to my liking.

Other expats give completely shit shitty mcshit advice along the lines of "wait until she's out, pack up her things and take her to the airport. It's the only language these people understand! Delete her phone numbers. Don't tell her where she's going until you get there. Or she'll clean out your house and disappear!"

I don't really want her to work out notice because she will be so horrid while she's here. I'll happily pay her off. I just want her gone.

We're sending her to India for a month to see her family in August. I wondered about saying just before she left that she needn't come back, and paying her 2 months wages? Dh says that is a shitty thing to do.

She has already sort of threatened me that if I get rid of her things will be difficult for me. I have asked her to leave a few times before but she won't go.

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 06:12:23

So, what I'm asking is... what is the right thing to do? What is the fair and correct way to terminate her employment? I need her to not be here any more so I don't have to hide in my bedroom, or find excuses to stay out of the house.

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 06:29:34

I take it the shitty mcshit advice is from expat woman??

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 06:38:14


wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 06:46:36

It figures.
I understand the drive to the airport is a popular option.

How did you come to employ her ..if it was through an agency they may be able to get her another sponsor?

(oh and prepare to be flamed on here ..another default opinion)

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Sun 15-May-11 06:46:51

Do you have a contract/agreement with her? what does it says for notice?

Definitely pay the notice period, and if you had agreed to send her back in august pay the plane ticket too, may be book it for now not august though.

A bit confused about why she is not a local. Did you make her come to your house or was she working in the house when you rented it or was she in another job locally before?

Can you give her contact for a new job there is always expats looking for someone?
If she was employ locally before you are not really sending her away in the street, she must have a network.

If you flew her there for your service then you owe her a bit more support.
Be fair but firm. (I know crap advice)

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 06:49:37

lemoust I'm guessing shes probably in the ME (like me)its pretty "normal" to sponsor someone to come oer here to work.

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 06:51:46

If it were me I'd give her the option of going home now and pay her off or ask if she wants to stay (in rented) and hope she can get another sponsor to take over her visa.

ggirl Sun 15-May-11 06:58:55

can you try and find her another family to work for?

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:02:45

We're paying the flight to India anyway. We were going to book it but she requested the cash and says she has booked it herself. For all I know she is going to stay with a friend down the road for a month, but that's her business. We have offered and paid for a flight home.

We are not her sponsors. Her previous employers have not cancelled her work visa and are aware that she is now working for us. Illegal, but very common.

We did not get her through an agency, or fly her over here. She was already here.

I started off working really hard to find her another job when I realised things were not working out here, but she refused to go to interviews or follow up job leads. When I drove her to an interview she didn't like the job because the family were not a nationality of her liking.

She even found a full time, sponsored, live-in job for her friend with an English family I know. Why didn't she take that job for herself?

What do you mean "stay here in rented" Wordsonascreen? She is currently living with us.

No contract. No agreement.

I just want to do the right thing by her. I just want her to not be in my house getting cross with me all the time.

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:05:25

For all she is a stroppy, duplicitous, argumentative, aggressive, dishonest old woman, she is also not very bright and extremely vulnerable.

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:06:13

Where does my moral responsibility end?

ggirl Sun 15-May-11 07:11:07

can you insist on her living out?
sounds a nightmare

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 07:11:41

I mean get her to stay in a rented room ie NOT living with you.
TBH I can see why the expat forum was so negative. She is with you illegally. It MAY be common but there are rules and if you choose not to follow them then thats the price you pay.

And I would pay her off and drive her to the airport in your circs unless you fancy a hefty fine and deportation yourself.

belgo Sun 15-May-11 07:11:56

Your moral responsibility ended when she threatened you.

Do not be scared of her, she knows you are, and that is why she is behaving this way. How does she behave with your dh?

FakePlasticTrees Sun 15-May-11 07:13:32

You have a responsiblity to be a good employer, but she has a responsibility to be a good employee. It's acceptable to end someone's employment. Tell her she's fired, you want her out of your home by X day (could you offer to pay for a cheap hotel for a week?). Pay her for her notice period plus another month's pay. If you've already paid for a flight, she's not stuck.

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 07:14:42

Your moral obligation: shes not with you because she lives and wants to stay with you shes there for the money : ee gads pay her what she would have got and send her home.

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 07:18:00

loves not lives

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:22:03

Okay. We are currently mid-May.

Her flight is supposedly booked for the beginning of August.

Can I give her 3 months wages and ask her to move out this weekend?

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:23:48

Belgo - she doesn't ever speak to DH. Ever.

And he won't help me deal with her either. He would be delighted if she were gone. He and the children can't stand her. Well actually, littlest doesn't mind her because she feeds him sweeties all the time. But she doesn't like my daughter and it shows.

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:24:46

Oh, actually, we're going away. Maybe I'll do it the weekend after dh gets back.

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:25:33

So - 2 weeks time. 3 months wages and a couple of days to move out? Fair?

wordsonascreen Sun 15-May-11 07:26:28

She can change her ticket (will probably be cheaper as well)
Its not working out be honest with her and use a proper agency next time (waggles finger)

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:28:11

Yes. I deserve the finger wag.

From now on I shall be doing all my own housework, and I shall go out again in the evening with my husband when my children are teenagers.

HattiFattner Sun 15-May-11 07:29:29

you could also be a cow and call the relevant immigration authorities and have her deported, but I guess you could end up with a fine for employing her? If you make up a story with immigration that you had not realised she was on a sponsored visa, and that you want her to leave, but she is resistng and threatening you?

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:34:42

No way.

I wouldn't be that mean. She could end up untried in a Middle Eastern prison.

belgo Sun 15-May-11 07:38:44

Does she have any friends there? Does she know anyone?

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:41:41

Oh yes. She has been here years and has a massive (almost mafia-like) network of friends. Plus there's the church.

It's me who's the dumbass newbie with no friends and no idea how things work.

BluddyMoFo Sun 15-May-11 07:45:27

How can anyone work from 6am to 9pm in a house without stopping!?! What work does she find to do there all day!?!?

BluddyMoFo Sun 15-May-11 07:46:35

Sorry, am aware I missed the point there a bit...but that was the bit that grabbed me!!1

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:52:14

She washes things as soon as anyone takes them off. So the washing machine will be on a 3 hour hot wash with ds's t-shirt and a towel from swimming. I have banned her from touching the washing machine except for her own clothes, but she does it anyway. I went running this morning and my running clothes are already washed, dried, ironed and back in my cupboard.

She hoses down the balconies and roof terrace two or three times a day. I have asked her not to, but then she comes in before anyone is awake and does it then.

She irons everything very very slowly. She probably irons for about 6 hours a day. Baffled as to what or why.

She keeps the floors very clean. Potters about in the kitchen. I've seen her hoovering the grass before.

Actually, I think a good part of her day must involve taking things out of cupboards and putting them back into other cupboards just to confuse me grin.

She abuses my houseplants. She moves the photos randomly around the house.

But she absolutely refuses to help in any way with the children's toy room. She won't hoover the cars out. She is a TERRIBLE cook, so I have had to stop her cooking.

creamcheesesneeze Sun 15-May-11 07:54:28

She is currently knocking on my bedroom door for the 3rd time to argue with me about a fine wool tablecloth that she wants to wash but I have hidden because I don't want her to.

frikonastick Sun 15-May-11 07:55:40

creamcheesesneeze, you can give her notice, pay her notice and then expect her to leave your house when you say so.

if she refuses, then call the police. they will probably fine you for having an illegal maid, but frankly thats the chance you take in the ME. at least she will be out your house.

i understand that you are worried about the repercussions of her behaviour, ie ladngin up in a ME prison. but that ISNT your repsonsibility. it is HERS.

it is simply insane to be held hostage by an employee while you worry about 'doing the right thing' i can assure you, she isnt.

a friend of ours was staying with other freinds who had an illegaly employed maid, who got very very drunk one afternoon in her room and then came out with a pair of scissors and attacked my friend. the employer (her friend) was at work, and when she called him in a panic, he said not to call the police because he would get in trouble for having the maid in the first place, and then that she had alcohol which she presumably took from his cupboard.

which is crazy right? that he would be more concerned about what happened to the maid, and himself, than his friend who was physically attacked and quite badly injured. you are doing the same thing. (in a smaller way obvs) by worrying about the wrong things.

take care of your financial responsibilty to her, give her the notice you want her to serve, and then let HER be responsible for her own behaviour.

oh, and my freind did call the police, who came and were very good and took the maid away and she did go to jail (mostly because she then smacked the police officer in the face for good measure) but they ended up not fining my friends freind for illegally emplying the maid. so far anway, i think she is up on trial soon.....

good luck smile

mama2plusbump Sun 15-May-11 08:00:37

What ME country are you in?

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Sun 15-May-11 08:10:45

I agree with friko. You have gone beyond your moral responsibilities.

can you contact her sponsors too? so they an take her back, they are much more responsible for her than you are.

Can you make your DH do the firing because she might respect him much more than you. In those countries the women are not really considered the boss, if the "master" didn't say anything then it is not really happening. Sad but true.

belgo Sun 15-May-11 08:36:30

'I've seen her hoovering the grass before.'


but yes, you have to get rid of her. It seems that you think she has all of the power, and she is taking advantage of this, by ignoring your instructions and arguing constantly with you. You have to be strong.

natation Sun 15-May-11 08:38:30

I think 3 months wages and a couple of days to move out is more than reasonable. Do you know if her friends would have space to take her in? You are obviously a very caring person that you are feeling responsible for someone you are about to fire.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 15-May-11 08:50:08

Sorry have no advice but am grin about you having to hide the tablecloth. Really hope you sort it out, sounds awful. I think paying her a decent amount of money and then firmly escorting her out the building sounds best. It sounds like if she stayed to work her notice then it would be hell for you and if you think she's dishonest would she take things? If she has a lot of friends then she can stay with someone/find another job as long as you give her a few months wages.

MuffinTumMum Sun 15-May-11 09:36:46

As she is working illegally, it all gets a bit tricky and I am sure the laws where I am differ from the ME. However, my advise would be that as you have made up your mind to do this, your helper needs to leave asap. The situation seems bad enough without having to see through a "notice" period for the length of time you are considering. It would be hugely awkward. And if anything goes wrong in this period, there is no comeback for you or her as she is not meant to be on your premises. As you can take comfort from the fact that you have tried to get her a new employer I would give a weeks notice. She has the airfare home and as you are talking about giving her wages in lieu then she will have money. That is where your responsibility ends..It is a sad lesson to learn especially as you feel you would never want to hire a Dh again. I understand your hesitancy but also like you living in a region where this is the norm, also understand the value of a good realtionship with a DH and what this offers them, you and your family. Our DH is an integral part of our family. We are not best mates, we have an employer/employee realtionship but it just works, I think you have just been very unlucky. I also understand your disconnect with your expat pals who are "hard" to the whole human aspect of your dilema. What is with those people?! Again, you have done more than most would have done. Its not working out.Get her to leave asap. If there is a next time, talk to helpers whom you like and ask them if they have friends in need of new contracts or when you know of people leaving toown, approach them about their DH's situation. Good luck! It wont be comfortable but if she does not click with the family then there is no other route to take.

FakePlasticTrees Sun 15-May-11 11:39:29

Just to add, once she's gone, if you hire a replacement, do it via a good agency, even if it costs you a bit more, at least having everything above board will make it easier should it go wrong.

And when you hire a replacement, you could get the agency to tell them they'll be fired should they decide to hoover the grass or wash that particular table cloth... grin

RitaMorgan Sun 15-May-11 12:02:51

Personally I think I would set up a disciplinary meeting with you and your DH, be clear about everything she does that you don't like (including insubordination) and with a time limit to improve. Make clear that if her work and attitude haven't improved by then you will be putting her on a plane home.

ZZZenAgain Sun 15-May-11 14:58:28

I think this is already gone too far and you should follow the advice of those expats who you personally like and respect who have been living there for some time and seem decent people. Obviously you need to choose the people you ask for advice carefully.

I really don't think this is going to work out for you.

mercibucket Sun 15-May-11 15:11:30

sorry I haven't read all the thread but I can tell you that my dh told our cleaner she was leaving then let her clean the house that day and she nicked all my jewellery
a pay off on the door step is far preferable to letting her stay in the house once she knows her job is gone

coccyx Sun 15-May-11 15:22:04

She needs to go. She sounds rubbish and not doing what you ask anyway. Buy her an air ticket for next week, and let hubby give it to her. If she is illegal why would she make a fuss??

ZZZenAgain Sun 15-May-11 15:34:58

"She has already sort of threatened me that if I get rid of her things will be difficult for me."

I wonder what she could have meant

beckaluna Sun 15-May-11 20:06:42

I completely understand how you feel I have just been through nearly the exact same thing. I felt really bad but I knew one thing for sure that I didn’t want her in my home... once I took the decision I told my husband not to in any way let me turn back because I knew I would try... she would make me feel bad, but he stopped me. What I did was, I sat her down, told her some of the main reasons that I was not happy with, I told her that we have come to a conclusion that we are not renewing the visa... blame most on DH, I wrote her up a nice CV I made her write a cover letter and I wrote I nice recommendation letter, I didn’t lie I just pointed out her good points. I told her simply I will never recommend you to a family.. there is no way but I found several cleaning companies on-line and in the phone book, sent her CV to them, she made a few phone calls, got a few interviews, to the cleaning companies she said that I am not comfortable having someone constantly in my house anymore, although I think to some companies she said that we are leaving the county. she got a job I cancelled her visa, she had to leave the county and when she came back she was not my responsibility any more, it was like a breath of fresh air. I paid her the ticket to leave the country and comeback though I asked her to pay me back eventually. Most people said I was crazy my husband wasn’t very happy with he time i spent taking her to interviews and all, even though it wasn’t that much but still it was a bit of a hassle. I feel better she has a job her children are not going to stave and for her its a new adventure. I thought I would regret it later and I kept on saying to myself oh come on she is not that bad ill give her another chance,,, but in the end I’m so happy that my dh helped me to stick to the decision. I feel so much better without her and I don’t regret it one bit. Its you home you shouldn’t have to feel like that in you own home!!!!

call her sponsors and tell them you fired her, what do they wish to do, deport or have her back by the end of the day?

Give 2 months severeance and ticket home.

End of story. If there is a fine so be it, but check with DH if that won't be a problem for his work.

bronze Mon 16-May-11 08:00:20

Is her name Mrs Danvers?

good luck op

Gooseberrybushes Mon 16-May-11 08:02:47

V quickly from the OP: your suggestion is a good one and very generous.

I wouldn't feel guilty. She'll get another job. And if you take someone else on part time they'll desperately need the work too.

Don't worry about it: do it right according to your principles but don't beat yourself up. People get sacked for doing a bad job: they just do.

We've never had a live in helper thank goodness, but I do know about the ME, work permits, sponsorships and mental cruelty.
I think the idea of getting rid ASAP is the best one. Don't tell her a week in advance, my friend did that and came home to a virtually empty house. He had to go to the market at Wadi Kabir and buy all his stuff back.
Make sure you get all the keys to your house too. Another friend went on holiday and came back to a completely empty house.

frikonastick Mon 16-May-11 10:59:37

my favorite story is a friend of mine came home from hliday early to find a party in full swing at her house. complete with copulating couples in the main bedroom..........i laughed like a loon. she didnt find it amusing At All. grin

i have always been very lucky though and had lovely lovely ladies work for me. but im also used to having employees and that does help.

creamcheesesneeze Mon 16-May-11 12:11:34


Events rather overtook me and she is gone.

Not a very happy ending, but it's over.

Thanks to everyone who posted. I really appreciate your thoughts and advice.

HattiFattner Mon 16-May-11 12:12:58

what happened??

Another nose ointment here. What actually happened and where are you?

yes, do tell what happened! have been reading this and need to know the ending

fatsowhale Mon 16-May-11 12:46:19

You can't leave it like that! What happened?

empirestateofmind Mon 16-May-11 13:00:01

What happened OP?

The tales I have heard about maids here in Singapore would fill a book. I have been very lucky but some of my friends have been left quite traumatised.

ZZZenAgain Mon 16-May-11 13:04:53

better luck next time. Even if it ended unpleasantly, I think it is for the best that it is behind you now.

Glad its behind you!

ggirl Mon 16-May-11 13:56:44

please come back oP and tell us

Jaspants Mon 16-May-11 14:13:26

Glad it got sorted but dying to know what happened.

Change the locks and be prepared. If she left without you asking there is no knowing what she has in mind. She may well tell lies to the security guards/watchman and rumours spread.
Change the locks I'm saying it again because I really beleive it is so important.
And dont employ someone without being on your sponsorship, yes "everyone does it" but at least in Dxb they are really clamping down. 75k dhs fine, deportation for maid and possible for you, and obviously not the sponsor who would be a local.

Idontknow, sometimes it isn't that simple. I know that in certain countries you can't sponsor someone if you aren't a national yourself.

frikonastick Tue 17-May-11 08:54:48

thats right kreecher, i think its like that in oman? but then you can have a maid through an agency. i think more people do it the illegal way than the legal way, but it is a risky thing to do.

FriggFRIGG Tue 17-May-11 09:30:34

OP come baaaaaack i need to know what happened!!

HazeltheMcWitch Wed 18-May-11 18:07:05

Bumpitty-bump OP, I want to know too...

I am concerned that op is tied up in the cellar..

Hope all is OK OP

I know she is OK. I am not being tantalising or superior but if she doesn't want to fulfull you with sordid tales of bondage it's her choice. wink

Kreecher- I NEED to know dammit. Spill now

needanewname Thu 19-May-11 21:54:15


fastedwina Fri 20-May-11 09:41:07

I'd be really wary of having her in your house once she knows she is going - is there no half way type of house that she can go to with an agency or something who will them try and find her work?

When our maid didn't work out, she went to the agency to live while they found her work (was not in ME). I wouldn't be keen to have a mad, angry woman in my house and round my children, especially if she has already threatened you.

Once more, it is resolved. IF the OP wants to come back she will, if not, stop being so nosy. Easy for me to say who knows wink

HugoFirst Sun 22-May-11 10:55:53

no she must bloody tell all

barbie1 Thu 26-May-11 05:41:02

Also in the ME and had a friend in a similar situation as you. She lied and told her maid that due to her husbands re location which would be taking place within 3 months that sadly she would have to find another job. The maid obviously was upset but had no idea of the real reason so continued working for the next 8 weeks, friend just gritted teeth knowing maid would soon be gone!
Not totally honest but it worked, my friend was due to relocate...but just down the road!

Hope it works out ok for you, and i echo using a licensed company to employ someone for you next time, the law isnt on our side in the ME sad

FellatioNelson Thu 26-May-11 17:50:43

I am due to move to the ME soon, and whilst I luuurve the idea of never lifting a finger again, this kind of scenario has been giving me nightmares already. I just don't think I'm going to cope with someone under my feet day in day out. And whilst I'm perfectly used to having a cleaner once a week, if I am to have someone do everything (whether I want it done or not) then I know I will be a bit control freaky and want things done my way or not at all. Laundry being a perfect example. And I will find it a bit invasive TBH.

From what I've heard I'm getting the impression that many of the maids see British employers as a soft touch because we would tend to treat them with much more respect and kindness than most Arab employers, who have more of a sense of entitlement and a sense of superiority, so maybe some of them will be inclined to be a bit manipulative of an Brit if they think they can get away with it. I just know I would be exactly the same as the OP if I were in a similar situation - all that post-colonial guilt. confused

The is thread has taught me plenty, and forearmed is forwarned. I am tempted to go for a live-out agency person even if it is much more expensive.

I too have read some shock things on Expat Woman.

barbie1 Thu 26-May-11 18:38:35

I have a part time maid, she already has a sponsor and just comes for a few hours every week and to babysit. Her sponsor is happy with this arrangement but even so i dont think this is entirely legal blush
There are loads of companies which will provide you will part time workers and you have the extra benefit of not worrying about insurance etc.
Im in Dubai, feel free to Pm if you have any questions smile

needanewname Thu 26-May-11 20:16:09

We're hoping to move to ME (DH has an interview) and ihave to be honest I never even realised that it was normal to have a live in maid - if he gets the job, life will be very different (oh and I feel exactly like FellatioNelson! Especially as in former jobs I was the live in hired help!!!!)

Grabaspoon Thu 26-May-11 20:42:42

Come back and tell us what happened OP

Kiwinyc Thu 26-May-11 23:20:13

Theres no obligation to have live in help though. I certainly don't plan to, although i will want a cleaner as I do here.

FellatioNelson Fri 27-May-11 06:43:31

The thing is, if they don't live in, and you want them to come several days a week they have to pay rent elsewhere in some mutli-shared grot-hole, so I'm sure they prefer to live in. It's cheaper for you and better for them. So am I rright in thinking that if you sponsor someone you are totally responsible for them (flights home etc) whereas if you use an agency then you are not?

FellatioNelson Fri 27-May-11 06:51:49

I've even read (on Expat Woman) people advising others to avoid certain nationalities of maid, and recommend other nationalities based on how demanding and difficult they can be versus how meek and biddable. Of course no-one wants a pain in the arse living with them, and you do need someone you can trust to carry out simple intructions without a fuss, but the whole thing makes me nervous.

We had an au pair for three months once and she sounded a bit like the OP's maid - I spent most of my life holed up in my bedroom trying to avoid her! The day we finally took her to the airport I actually cried with relief.

FellatioNelson Fri 27-May-11 06:53:31

Sorry I don't mean she sounded a bit like the OP's maid - I mean it sounds like the OP's maid was very much like my au pair! (it's still early confused)

wordsonascreen Fri 27-May-11 07:03:32

Fellatio:its a whole different world.

Google agency maids on expat but be aware the worst threads have probably been deleted the mods there are notoriously trigger happy (and I've been banned from there grin

FellatioNelson Fri 27-May-11 07:08:33

Haha - what did you do? It does seem a bit of a humourless place I must admit.

MrsSchadenfreude Fri 27-May-11 07:14:50

I sacked a live-in nanny (she was from the Philippines) several years ago and got an utter flaming and pasting from everyone on here. She was pregnant, which probably didn't help, although I did everything by the book, paid her full maternity leave, plus an extra month which she asked for. The overwhelming support on here was for her, and I was the Evil Bitch From Hell, despite the fact that she was very cruel to my children (which got largely ignored). So I think you are absolutely right not to post any details about her departure.

wordsonascreen Fri 27-May-11 07:18:10

Irrc it involved me telling several people to fuck off (that seems to be frowned upon)
Have you got schools sorted yet ?

wordsonascreen Fri 27-May-11 07:19:52

xpost schaden

yy agree [still shuddering from the MOS maid thread from a while back]

allhailtheaubergine Fri 27-May-11 08:30:59

Where in the ME are you heading Fellatio?

We lived in Oman, as I have said. We had two different home helps, neither of whom lived in.
I know that employing her was illegal, but her sponsor didn't seem to mind.
I also know that homehelps prefer to be employed by expats, they pay more due to guilt.
FWIW, we had one Sri Lankan woman and one Indian woman working for us. Both were great.

FellatioNelson Fri 27-May-11 11:30:37

I am going to Doha, Qatar. Sorting out the schools nightmare is taking up most of my time at the moment!

TheBride Sat 28-May-11 02:18:24


Don't take too much notice of maid threads on EW- remember that no-one starts a thread saying "my maid is awesome"; in fact anyone I know who has a great helper stays very quiet on the subject in case they get poached (albeit helper poaching is the death knell of friendship!).

Re agencies, it's legal, but (at least in Dubai) it's a very rough deal for the maid- the agency takes around 80% of the "hourly rate" you're paying and they live in horrible dorms stuck out in the desert somewhere (labour camps). They are also more likely to be "bonded" employees. Whilst many westerners have moral scrupples about live in help (I'm still scarred by the "houseboy" thread with the Facebook chaser), the reality is that a live in, FT job with a fair employer who pays the wages and respects days off, holiday and flights home and a clean and comfortable (if small) room with respected privacy, is the best life outcome for these women. Many of them have a nice house in their home country, and children in college due to their wages. Some others aren't so lucky, and have feckless husbands or brothers who drink the lot, but at least they dont have to live with the arses (some of the stories I have heard make me want to fly to Manila, seek out said men, and give them a piece of my mind)

I (reluctantly) went to FT when we went to HK as anything else is illegal (although done, but DH didn't want to risk it, as employer made it clear that if we got caught, we'd be hitting the road). My helper is really great- she's a Filipana lady with two grown up children. She's very experienced, so just gets on with everything - we had a few teething troubles up front, but really tiny, minor things which I just mentioned in passing, and then she did it differently.

Anyway, it's horses for courses, but I would at least consider the FT option, as can be a better deal for everyone concerned, if you find the right helper.

Good luck in Doha- may the school's admission genie wave his wand for you grin

FellatioNelson Sat 28-May-11 07:06:48

Thank you thebride - yes, I know you are right. I have said all that stuff to myself. I just need to brace myself to toughen up and not be scared of being 'Boss Lady' so that if confrontations need to be had I am capable of handling them without ending up a gibbering guilt-ridden wreck! grin

I think I will just take my time and not rush into picking a helper, and ask lots of advice from experienced types when I get there.

FellatioNelson Sat 28-May-11 07:10:25

Oh, and I've not read the houseboy thread and I'll look it up, but let's say this is MN, land of the Principled Idealist, so I can just imagine....wink

allhailtheaubergine Sat 28-May-11 07:11:19

Everyone who posts on ExpatWoman is shrieking MAD. Fact.

FellatioNelson Sat 28-May-11 07:41:08

They are rather prudish aren't they? After MN it's a bit difficult for me to get with the programme. I can't help visualising them all as a bunch of bible-bashing Americans in knee length shorts, trainers and ankle socks.

I'll abandon it I think. You gals can be my own sweary debauched ex-pat advisors. grin

barbie1 Sat 28-May-11 08:03:37

I have posted on EXPAT WOMEN blush in my defense it was because we found a turtle while walking the dog and wanted to see if anyone would claim it before the dog ate it! grin

TheBride Sat 28-May-11 10:33:15

expatwoman can be very useful in terms of practical help, but on a Thursday night it always kicks off worse than any AIBU in the history of MN, and because the number of individual posters is lower and many know one another in RL, there is a "royalty" element who rule the forum with a rod of iron- then they have a fall out in RL and live it through EW. It's actually quite entertaining.

FellatioNelson Sat 28-May-11 11:37:24

Oh that's sounds like something I need to avoid at all costs when I get there then - warring factions and queen bee cliques. shock

frikonastick Sat 28-May-11 13:02:25

grin fellatio, doha expat woman board is not quite as nest of vipery as the dubai one. but it functions much more as an information board than a chat site like this one. LOL at swearing on there wordsonasceen, hahahahahah, you must of been deleted so fast your head must of spun.

i am also moving to doha, in 2 months. DH is there now sorting out housing......which is a bit nerve wreaking!

on the subject of maids, dont worry too much, i have a lovely lovely full time nanny/maid and she has been with us for years (originally employed her in dubai) and she has moved countries with us and is also coming to qatar.

Kiwinyc Sat 28-May-11 21:01:30

frikonastick - see you there! - we are moving to Doha at the end of August to start the new school year there.

FellatioNelson Sat 28-May-11 21:12:24

Wow - there is a whole little gang of us! I'll be arriving late Sept.

frikonastick Sun 29-May-11 08:42:24

oh thats cool, kiwi and fellatio. we should totally set up our own thread smile

FellatioNelson Sun 29-May-11 08:43:46

Yes, we should! all the trials and tribulations....I can't think straight at the moment I have so much to do. confused

louisea Tue 07-Jun-11 19:58:54

Hey, please don't say that about me.

needanewname Tue 07-Jun-11 21:06:58

DH has an interview for a job in Abu Dhabi on tuesday, nto sure if I'm really excited or terrified at the prospect of going!

FellatioNelson Tue 07-Jun-11 21:58:56

Abu Dhabi is ace.

needanewname Tue 07-Jun-11 23:43:58

Yay - just hope he gets the job now. Will then be on here pestering asking you all for tips and info!

I take it that I will be able to access Mumsnet out there!

louisea Wed 08-Jun-11 07:24:12

Good luck to all those moving to Doha. We are leaving after 3 years. We had a tough start but now I'm sad to be leaving.

Jebel Wed 08-Jun-11 07:36:29

fellatio frik kiwi I have lived in Dohahahahahaha for 4 years so if you want any info, send me a message. I don't have kids (we are TTC) but spend enough time with those who do to be able to give the low-down. I've pretty much been asked every question possible by new arrivals (including whether you can bring a vibrator in - honestly, no, imagine the customs officials pulling that out of your suitcase)

We love it here, we have bad days but you do anywhere.

FellatioNelson Wed 08-Jun-11 22:39:32

Funny you should mention the vibrator...grin And the answer is?

FellatioNelson Wed 08-Jun-11 22:44:01

Oh yes, sorry - you said No. sad The thought of my whole 40 foot container being emptied on the dockside and rifled through because they scanned it with some super-duper radar machine and there buried among the pots and pans and mops and buckets was a Rampant Rabbit glowing like a beacon of western immorality is too much to bear. confused

TheBride Thu 09-Jun-11 12:25:42


Yeah, my David Bailey book got confiscated by UAE customs, so they do actually have a look.

Jebel Thu 09-Jun-11 15:34:25

Haha, the answer is no sadly. I know someone who had one removed from their luggagesmile One guy I know had a special ceremonial bottle of whiskey in his container and it got picked up by the xray. Sex and the city DVD no problem but book by Palestinian held for 2 weeks.

On the original topic I have had live-in and not live-in. Best way to find someone is word of mouth. Plenty of people allow theirs to do part-time too. Current cleaner is awesome but she is very bossy!

maidagencydubai Wed 24-Jul-13 16:15:06

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