To not want to run a neighbourhood creche?(109 Posts)
I am currently on maternity leave but will shortly be returning to work part time, and we have an absolutely lovely nanny who has already started with us to look after the DDs. The girls love her to bits and so do we - we don't want to do anything to make her unhappy or reconsider staying with us. Obviously as I am still at home, this gives us a bit of extra manpower, but I am happy with this - we didn't go on holiday last summer as I was heavily pregnant, so we decided that we would use our holiday budget on making our lives a bit easier with a new baby and having a nanny to help us for a bit.
My difficulty is that all of the local kids love our nanny also, and we are getting multiple requests for us to look after everyone's kids. Today my older DD is ill and a bit unhappy and needs a cuddle, I am already looking after one friend's children as she has a work emergency and have just had another request from.another friend as to whether our nanny could go around and sit with her daughter for the day, as she is ill. These are absolutely lovely friends and I would honestly like to help if I could - they are not CFs and I don't want to offend them in any way. They have been really supportive when we have been having a horrible time over the last few months. However, to be absolutely honest, I would like to find a form of words which gently explains that I don't want to ask my nanny to do these things. She's a professional in her field, and I am lucky to have her. I don't want her to feel as though I am treating her like a commodity to be loaned around to my friends. It would feel like I was being a bit disrespectful. I have already tried to explain this but the requests keep coming. I also, to be brutally honest, am a bit nervous about setting up an expectation that I/we will be everyone's default childcare in the longer term. I am totally happy to help in an emergency, obviously, but how do I find a gentle form of words that explains that I don't feel we can take on this responsibility? I really don't want to affect these friendships negatively - these are good, kind friends, they have been very good to me and they are not the kind of people to take advantage - so I need to use a very gentle approach. Aibu to feel this way and any suggestions?
I think you just have to keep saying no. If you don’t say no, then it will continue.
If your friends want your nanny to babysit, surely they should pay her as a private arrangement. As long as it doesn’t interfere with her working duties.
I don't want to ask my nanny to do these things. She's a professional in her field, and I am lucky to have her. I don't want her to feel as though I am treating her like a commodity to be loaned around to my friends. It would feel like I was being a bit disrespectful this and repeat to anyone asking for a loan of your nanny. Then phone your friend with work emergency tell them your dd is unwell and their dc needs to collected asap. Start putting yourself, your dc first. What would work emergency friend do if you weren't there? She can do that.
"Hi friend, I think that you'd best discuss this with nanny herself. This is her phone number and these are her rates".
Rinse and repeat.
And make it clear to nanny that you are not involved in any arrangements she makes with others and that those arrangements cannot involve those children being at your house.
Has your nanny nannies before? Can you talk to her about it? As you say, she's a professional, can you ask her professional experience on how to kindly explain to people that she isn't a community creche? She might also then be able to let you know her boundaries, maybe she doesn't mind an extra child for a couple of hours but would not have an extra for the whole day. Then you have a clearer footing for educating your friends about the service she provides.
I think I would say that your nanny has expressed some disgruntlement about looking after other people's children so regularly so because you don't want to lose her you're not going yo ask her to do it anymore.
I would just say that you're not able to help cover their childcare issues (unless it's a genuine emergency, your kid being off sick is just a normal part of parenting that everyone has to juggle).
Apart from anything else I wouldn't want to be around all these sick kids all the time meaning I get sick and my kids get sick.
If you gently say no you can't ask your nanny to do that, once they've heard no 2 or 3 times the requests should stop, unless they are CF.
I have had this a lot too. Similar circumstances. I had a thread about it a year or so back where my arse got handed to me and the Daily Mail picked it up
Generally I use "I'm really sorry but we have plans for that day already"
For persistent offenders "as a general rule, I'm not going to ask nanny to take on additional children, she's paid to look after mine and I want her to be able to focus on that"
It's hard! I also do want to help out friends in emergencies as you never know when it will be your turn to need help. But some people seem to have emergencies every couple of days.... Good luck!
The request from one of your friends for your nanny to go and sit with her daughter for the day is CF material for sure. She may be a nice friend but this is using you.
The emergency one is tricky but all othe requests must be met with a no. Could you say you hired the nanny with teh agreement beign that she looks after two children only ie yours. That nanny is not happy about looking after more. That's if you can't just say no, she's busy doing her job!!
If you are on M/L yourself at the moment could you say something like 'on this occasion I will be happy to help you out as my friend and come round myself but it is not something I am happy to ask my nanny to do'.
Then you are making it clear that you are still 'friends' with your friends by helping them out personally but not by bringing your nanny into the arrangements.
If that makes sense .
You don't hand around your nanny when she is working for you. Isn't she lookingxagter your baby today ?
If it s nanny day off sure she can go and work for someone else and be paid extra. That s between nanny and the other parent.
Stop subsidising everyone s childcare.
You will really annoy your nanny if she is used in that way.
Keep saying no.
Definitely don’t give out the nanny’s phone number unless she says it’s ok.
I like to the “Sorry we already have plans for the day” approach or “Sorry it’s outside of her contract, really wish I could help”. Just needs to be a blanket no for everything though.
If you employed a cleaner, would it be okay to ask her to go and dust your friends’ homes for free? No? Then it’s not okay for them to ask your nanny to look after their kids.
Just say something like "sorry Mary no she can't do that, when we took her on we were clear that it would just be our kids, that worked both ways, she can't help her friends on our time no matter how close and equally then we can't expect to help out our friends. We were both clear on this at interview so fair is fair I need to stick to it"
"Nanny contract is very clear that she is employed to look after our DC only"
You need to put a stop to this. Whilst it’s well meaning to offer to help friends out in an emergency what you’re actually doing is asking your nanny to take on extra work above and beyond her contract without any extra pay, compromising her ability to perform her primary job function (looking after your DDs). If this continues you run the risk of losing the nanny altogether.
You need to be clear and say no, that the nanny works for you, it’s not fair to ask her to look after more children and your friends will need to make their own arrangements. It might be worth telling them this before an ‘emergency’ arises so they know your nanny isn’t an option.
i would go with
"nanny has started with us early to help dds get into a good routine with her and us all to get used to it. hope you find some cover."
Sorry, I meant just say it’s against the nanny’s contract. It’s not fair to blame the nanny. Blaming the contract is easier. Just keep it short, you don’t need long explanations.
“No, I pay Nanny to look after my D.C./help me. So that won’t work.
Would you like the number of the agency we used?”
Put it this way, if you had bought an expensive bottle of champagne, how would you react if your friend asked you to give it to her, bcos she was doing a special meal?
I think kalinka's cleaner analogy should work!
And yes, your friends are being CFs - what did they used to do, before you so kindly hired the Neighbourhood Mary Poppins!?
The nanny won't remain in your employment if you don't nip the CF behaviour in the bud.
'The number of requests for our nanny to help out with other people's childcare means that we are no longer able to help out anyone else and she will only be looking after my/our children. This applies to everyone so please don't ask me to make an exception. The agency number is....'
I definitely wouldn't give out the nanny's phone number or suggest your friends make a side arrangement with her - that could very quickly go badly wrong!
I'd do what a PP has said (if you want to offer something) and say that your DD is at home as she's ill but that if your friend is very stuck, you could go over for part of the day. That makes it clear that your nanny is not a shareable commodity.
As these sound like good friends, I wouldn't give them anything which could be taken as a chippy response but equally I wouldn't offer reasons (unless perhaps that you are not comfortable offering to lend the nanny).
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