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To expect my au pair to open the door?

(381 Posts)
alice298 Mon 21-Mar-16 15:16:57

I just can't work out if I am being unreasonable or not... The other day I said to my au pair "if you hear the doorbell, please open the door as I'm expecting a parcel." I actually assumed if she heard the bell she would open it anyway as I think anyone living under a shared roof would automatically do so. But I asked specifically as I am 1. Deaf so often miss the bell, and 2. Have a newborn so am often trapped under a boob monster. Anyway, she said that when she is not officially on duty, she will not open the door unless she happens to be walking past or making a cup of tea (etc). She said she won't leave her room to open it.
I couldn't believe we were having this conversation, but didn't want to lose the plot already being deeply hormonal and emotional. So I just said - "okay please let me know when you're having a period during which you can't open it so I can make sure I am near the bell," and she said no, she didn't know when the mood would hit her not to open it so she didn't feel able to pre warn me.
I felt so upset by all this. I left it at there as I just couldn't bear to discuss it further, I didn't even know what to say. And now I find it hard to look at her in the face as I feel it is extraordinarily unkind, as well as selfish. But AIBU? If so I would love rational thinking so I can get over my current feeling of dislike towards her. I really want to be happy with her and get on with life, and finding it very hard to do so.
Thanks in advance!

Tiggywinkler Mon 21-Mar-16 15:20:59


"She didn't know when the mood would hit her" - well, maybe she should take that mood elsewhere!

Incredibly unhelpful and unreasonable of her.

whois Mon 21-Mar-16 15:22:18

Get rid. She's not the kind of person you want looking after your kid or living in your home.

MartinaJ Mon 21-Mar-16 15:22:23

Find yourself another au-pair. This one is an obnoxious little brat and needs to go home.

ctjoy103 Mon 21-Mar-16 15:22:25

I would get rid of her. If she has such an attitude while you are there I don't want to imagine what happens if you aren't looking. What a damn cheek of her.

StarlingMurmuration Mon 21-Mar-16 15:23:40

Yeah, I'd sack her as soon as you can find a replacement/according to the terms of her employment contract. I couldn't be having with that kind of work to rule attitude in my own home. What's next? If your child falls over when she's not on duty, she's just ignore him/her?

SongOfTheLark Mon 21-Mar-16 15:24:58

YANBU she sounds like a fucking dickhead cut your losses and sack her off! shock

8angle Mon 21-Mar-16 15:28:01

oh God you really don't need the added stress of this "stroppy teenager" in your life.

Technically she is probably "within her rights", but if she can't be bothered to at least have some common courtesy I would move on....

pippistrelle Mon 21-Mar-16 15:29:06

YANBU. Isn't the point of an au pair that they live as part of the family? You'd be pretty furious with any other member of the household refusing to do this very minor thing, for no good reason.

bibbitybobbityyhat Mon 21-Mar-16 15:31:51

I think you know she is being unreasonable tbh.

My deaf friend has a special doorbell which does something other than make a sound (not quite sure what ... flashing light? vibrating message on mobile?) so that she isn't reliant on someone else being in the house to answer the door.

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Mon 21-Mar-16 15:33:56

Ergh! Could she be any more unhelpful ?

Another note for cut your losses and let go at once - who the fuck does she think she is????

Lunar1 Mon 21-Mar-16 15:34:15

Get rid of her, I wouldn't pay a moody sod to live under my roof!

Bailey101 Mon 21-Mar-16 15:34:50

Definitely YANBU. I couldn't live with that attitude under my roof - I'd be getting rid of the little madam pretty sharpish.

mmgirish Mon 21-Mar-16 15:36:20

Cut her loose. This is a sign.

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Mon 21-Mar-16 15:36:48

How old is she and how long has she been there?

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Mon 21-Mar-16 15:37:52

Agree with the poster who said imAgine what she's like when your not looking sad

scarlets Mon 21-Mar-16 15:37:57

Sack her.

XIsACunt Mon 21-Mar-16 15:38:23

Get rid of her and find someone else. This isn't a great start.

MyLocal Mon 21-Mar-16 15:38:45

And what happens if there is a letter or parcel fro her at the door? do you refuse to take it in because she is off duty? she is being ridiculous. I would tell her that on this basis she is not permitted to use gas, electricity or water when she is not on duty.

shazzarooney99 Mon 21-Mar-16 15:40:05

I would get rid of her, thats just not on.

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Mon 21-Mar-16 15:40:14

Where did you recruit her from? If it's an agency I'd be having words with them

BatterseaParker Mon 21-Mar-16 15:40:45

I would not have someone with that attitude in my home and looking after my child. If she cannot be bothered to open the door when asked, what guarantee do you have that she will pick up your baby when s/he cries?
Her response to your entirely reasonable request is completely lacking in basic courtesy. T B H it sounds as if she has no respect for you. You need to nip this in the bud immediately. My advice would be to get rid of her. There are lots of nice au pairs out there.

thinkfast Mon 21-Mar-16 15:41:21

That's crazy. Assuming you treat her reasonably, fairly etc so she's not got an axe to grind, I'd start looking for a replacement

WhereYouLeftIt Mon 21-Mar-16 15:43:03

Get rid.

BitOutOfPractice Mon 21-Mar-16 15:44:03


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