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to not want to talk constantly to the baby?

(67 Posts)
JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 17:51:34

I'm a Nanny for a very lovely family based in Europe. I've done a lot of nannying, and worked for a lot of families, and can honestly say that this couple are the nicest that I've worked for; generally very friendly and respectful of me. Jobs with nice families are really very hard to find, this one also pays well and has a few good perks; so I don't want to leave it or mess anything up.

I look after one baby, she is currently 4 months old. I have been with them for 2 months.

One of the issues that I have with the job is the PFBness of the parents, particularly the mother. I have spreadsheets to fill in throughout the day to record baby's weight, nappies, amount of milk drank, how often she is massaged, sleep patterns etc etc. Every day she must be given several special baby massages, bathed with exactly the right quantity of fresh milk and oil mixed with the water, picked up in a special way (we actually went to a class to teach us how to pick babies up...), all bottles are sterilised within an inch of their lives and can only be handled with special tweezers. Milk cannot be reheated and sterile water is rotated throughout the day. We do not use wetwipes (not even water wipes) but instead have a ceramic bowl to fill with warm water and use special tissues dipped in this water to do the nappy change. There are probably loads more but I can't think of any right now. Have a look on one of the PFB threads; we do pretty much all of it.

Anyway, tonight she has just come home from some postnatal class (with a physio not a child specialist) and told me that she has learned that it is essential that we constantly talk to the baby. As in, constantly. So whenever we are with her and she is awake there must be a constant stream of talk. This apparently is essential for her development.
(I've done diplomas in childcare and am studying a degree in child development and whilst communication is important, constant seems a bit much).

The idea of having to talk constantly to the baby is making me really anxious. I'm a pretty quiet person in general and very reserved. Whilst I talk to her often, and sing to her too, I really can't bare the thought of having to talk/sing all of the time.

AIBU? I understand that it is her baby put I'm starting to feel really smothered by all of the things that are "essential" for the babys development/health etc.

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 17:51:54

Jaysus, that was an essay. Sorry! blush

cosmicglittergirl Sun 29-Nov-15 17:55:18

Yeah well, she's getting you to do it all isn't she?! There's no way anyone would be arsed with all that nonsense. No advice except it sounds awful and I doubt constantly talking to a small baby is going to do anything helpful for it.

spritefairy Sun 29-Nov-15 17:56:34

Gosh that sounds alot!
Hopefully next week the professional will say baby needs quiet time too. How ever I think you need to do what the parents are paying you for. Sorry

KingJoffreyLikesJaffaCakes Sun 29-Nov-15 17:56:10

I expect the baby would also hate it.

Imagine being talked at all of the time? Hideous.

Just lie and say you've done it. Pop Strepsils to make it look authentic.

Faye12345 Sun 29-Nov-15 17:58:25

Sorry she sounds nuts! New job?

IndomitabIe Sun 29-Nov-15 17:58:37

You sound amazing! As does the mother! (But in different ways!)

I wish I could afford someone like you!

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 17:59:48

The problem is she's in the house a lot of the time (she works from home) so she can hear me, or not hear me as the case may be.

spritefairy has a point, as I am paid by the parents...

I'm currently seem to be the baby's favourite (as much as one can be the favourite) and I'm sure its because I'm not always in her face, and cooing over her etc etc (I do give her love, I promise! Just not constant overbearing attention) and I've found this to be the case with a lot of babies I worked with, I tend to get more attention from them when I'm the least noisy.

Cadenza1818 Sun 29-Nov-15 18:01:42

Tell her to look after her own child! Goodness me. You sound fab though grin

Oysterbabe Sun 29-Nov-15 18:01:42

Bathed in milk?! Is she Cleopatra?

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 18:02:49

The mother means well and she's a genuinely nice lady.
I'm kind of hoping all of the PFB stuff fades as baby gets older, it doesn't half make me anxious.

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 18:03:14

Not entirely in milk! Mixed with water and oil

SuperFlyHigh Sun 29-Nov-15 18:03:40

If it were me?! Seriously I'd do it or not do it as the case may be and look for another job.

What the mother wants it seems in this instance is what she gets.

EatDessertFirst Sun 29-Nov-15 18:05:25

What are the 'special tissues' made of? You must spend more time writing on spreadsheets than looking after the baby but you sound lovely. I think they are taking the piss.

CrystalSkull Sun 29-Nov-15 18:05:12

Could you record yourself and play it back, or play story tapes?

NannyNim Sun 29-Nov-15 18:06:14

I too have done a degree in Early Childhood Studies and the material I've read states that talking a baby is essential but so is listening. When babies coo and gurgle and adults pretend that they're telling stories/singing/etc that actually promotes their language acquisition because they're learning that their vocal sounds are valued.

Can you not read up on some of that and present your case for quiet time with research and articles that way?

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 18:07:25

NannyNim - I remember reading something about that. I'll do some research and present a case next time it gets bought up! Thank you.

Artandco Sun 29-Nov-15 18:11:32

Most of above sounds normal tbh. You aren't supposed to heat any milk it should be made fresh and used, and wipes dry many babies. A cloth and water is normal exotic.
I would talk to my babies most the day tbh as its natural to talk to someone your in the room with/ moving around.

Sorry, but although you may be 'qualified' you don't sound up to date with current guidelines and knowledge

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 18:14:01

Formula milk shouldn't be reheated but its perfectly fine to heat up pumped breast milk.
I'm not sure what the difference between water wipes (which are just premade water soaked tissues) and tissues dipped in fresh water is. Except for the obvious amount of faff and extra mess.

VestalVirgin Sun 29-Nov-15 18:15:34

Can she give you a link to the research paper? I cannot believe there is even a study where people talked to babies all the time. It'd be exhausting.

And also, as NannyNim mentioned, the baby needs to "say" something herself, and have that listened to. When is time for that if you are talking constantly?

Artandco Sun 29-Nov-15 18:17:07

Joe - well reusable wipes the difference is you buy 20 and wash with regular laundry so save on buying wipes every week for 2 years

aprilanne Sun 29-Nov-15 18:18:54

the truth .she needs to take some decent maternity leave and look after her own child .she obviously cant be bothered with massaging and all that nonsense so why should you

M48294Y Sun 29-Nov-15 18:18:36

Oh lordy! they are going to drive you mad soon enough. I too would look for another job. Surely you must value a certain amount of autonomy as a professional Nanny? how can you bear to be told exactly what to do for every little thing?

JoeyJoeJoeJuniorShabadoo Sun 29-Nov-15 18:19:44

We don't use reusable wipes - they're packs of thick tissues which are used and then thrown away. If it was an environmental thing then I'd understand.

DoreenLethal Sun 29-Nov-15 18:20:25

tonight she has just come home from some postnatal class (with a physio not a child specialist) and told me that she has learned that it is essential that we constantly talk to the baby

Oh how are you going to do that all day if you are working?

Oh you mean me? No can do love, I'd lose my voice in a day. And she doesn't want to listen to me whortling on all day. Perhaps you could make some tapes and I could play them on repeat for PFB. Have you got a link to the study so that I can read up on it as it sounds like new research. Ta.

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