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to be p*****d off that my nany just criticised my parenting skills?

(32 Posts)
naturopath Thu 20-Aug-09 11:26:46

Nanny is 30, but no children of her own yet. She's only had one previous nannying job before this one. Generally she is excellent - the kids love her and she has them eating/sleeping/playing/walking well etc.

But she has just told me that I am in for trouble when the dcs get older as I am "too lenient" and apparently they won't listen to me. Actually, that is not the case at all (although dh and mil are def imo too lenient / encouraging of naughty / dangerous behaviour). Only this morning I had ds outside the room (our version of naughty step) twice - once for throwing things, the other for poking his baby brother. He is generally a gorgeous, pretty well-behaved boy - just a little bit cheeky / naughty sometimes (he is 2 - so a pretty typical toddler). He is v happy, has lots of friends, and everyone oves him.

If on the odd ocassion I am too lenient it is usually because I am exhausted, or we are playing. (I work ft, and have a newborn - although on mat leave now).

I am with at least one of the dcs at all times of day / night at the mo - she gets to go home and have a full night's sleep - completely different - and she doesn't have the mother-child relationship / challenges etc.So what right does she have to criticise me? And I'm her employer ffs! aibu??

naturopath Thu 20-Aug-09 11:30:06

er, I'm actually a good speller - just typing with one hand whilst bf and not looking at screen

stonethecrows Thu 20-Aug-09 11:32:02

hmmm, not sure...but probably YANBU.

pjmama Thu 20-Aug-09 11:35:23

She doesn't really have the right to pass judgement, but realistically she's probably in a better position than anyone else to comment as she most likely spends more time with you all? It's up to you whether you want to take her comments on board or not.

Perhaps she wasn't directing it specifically at you? If as you say other family members are too lenient, maybe that's what she was getting at?

She probably thinks she's trying to help but has been a bit tactless about it.

justaphase Thu 20-Aug-09 11:38:47

You are so NBU.

This would absolutely drive me nuts and would be grounds for a serious conversation and if I am not happy with the result I would consider parting ways with the nanny.

Totally not her place to critisise your parenting skills or style. She can give advise based on her experiense - yes, but "rod for your own back" type statements are not on.

At 30-years old she should know this. She should also know that you are doing what she gets paid for and a lot more around the clock, every day of the year and for free. Not to mention hormones. And a million other things.

Totally out of line.

You can tell this gets my back up, can't you?

I once got critisised by a nanny for WOH. The cheeky cow!

BitOfFun Thu 20-Aug-09 11:40:33

She doesn't help herself to cups of tea as well, does she? Because that could swing me one way or the other wink

naturopath Thu 20-Aug-09 12:01:04

everyone may help themselves to cups of tea here! grin

thanks justaphase - this is exactly how I feel.

And she did, for some reason (who knows why - ds hadn't done anything when she arrived!) direct the comment specifically at me, when she knows full well that dh and mil are encouragers of his slightly 'wild' behaviour sometimes.

Can't really sack her as employment relatioship coming to an end anyway soon now that I am at home on mat leave. But just reeeaally annoys me!

kittywise Thu 20-Aug-09 12:03:41

It's not her place. You are her employer. It shows lack of judgement and lack of respect.

BitOfFun Thu 20-Aug-09 12:25:11 a moth to a flame, eh kitty? grin

BitOfFun Thu 20-Aug-09 12:28:51

Thinking about it though, maybe she doesn't see herself as an employee, but more of a professional imparting her expertise...does she use words like "unassetable" at all, Naturopath?

kittywise Thu 20-Aug-09 12:40:35

wink indeed, indeed!!

GypsyMoth Thu 20-Aug-09 12:47:42

er,as an ex nanny myself,i saw alot of parenting mistakes. apart from not being able to cope with their own kids without hired help,alot of the time the kids were imply spoilt. and the parents never saw it.

maybe she see's something that you don't? maybe she thinks that you should speak to mil and dh......are you main carer when they aren't around? cos it will be on your shoulders,as the nanny says.

and she wouldn't say it to you and risk dis-harmony if she didn't see it

WhereYouLeftIt Thu 20-Aug-09 13:00:14

Perhaps it's because the employment will be coming to an end soon that she raised the issue? Not in a slash-and-burn way, I mean more in the tying-up-all-the-loose-ends-and-leaving-a-tidy-desk kind of thing. Hm, not being very clear, am I? I think I'm trying to say that she may have meant it kindly, albeit tactless; you say she's generally excellent, she probably has come to care for your kids (and your) future. I'm not saying you are too lenient (how would I know?), but I think she may have meant to be helpful rather than insulting.

Regardless, YANBU to feel p**d off. Anyone with any self-esteem would feel roundly attacked.

Fairynufff Thu 20-Aug-09 13:16:44

"just a little bit cheeky / naughty sometimes" speaks volumes. YANBU to feel a bit wounded but I doubt if she's deliberately being malicious. I absolutely have no tolerance for naughty kids so my DC were disciplined from the get go despite how exhausted or preoccupied I was. It sounds like you are making excuses to me.

justaphase Thu 20-Aug-09 13:23:06

Honestly Fairynuff, I have never met a child who is not "a little bit cheeky/naughty sometimes". Do they exist? Seriously?

missingtheaction Thu 20-Aug-09 13:34:35


Just because she may be right doesn't mean it's ok for her to criticise or be tactless.

It is EXTREMELY unhelpful for people to point out your mistakes unless they offer you real help in fixing them.

I suffered from this more than once, and still suffer from it from my mum. Now I just smile patronising and say 'yes well when you are living my life with 24/7 parental responsibility, a job and a home to run I am sure you will be perfect but in the meantime we will just carry on doing it my way'.

CinnabarRed Thu 20-Aug-09 13:36:53

TBH, I expect our nanny to tell me if she thinks I'm not parenting as effectively as I could be - she has mentioned a couple of things in the past, and provided helpful suggestions for alternative ways to tackle issues, and I have been very grateful for her opinion. I would feel she was being remiss in her duties if she didn't raise concerns.

superduperminder Thu 20-Aug-09 13:37:45

Are your children robots Fairynuff? I imagine they behave for you due to your 'intolerance', but go wild as soon as you are out of sight....

GypsyMoth Thu 20-Aug-09 13:38:42

er,she IS helping fix them. for a nanny its an uphill climmb undoing bad parenting,only for the 'parent' to carry it you have to 'undo' it again!! i had it alot at work.

not saying this is case with op here,just generally what i found.

kittywise Thu 20-Aug-09 13:39:46

I have absolutely no tolerance for naughty kids either and I am a strict mum in many regards BUT my kids are still naughty at times because they're kids.

forehead Thu 20-Aug-09 14:28:40

It might be difficult for you to accept, but she is probably right. I would just get over it if i were you and ask for advice from her.
You will probably be grateful to her in the future

diddl Thu 20-Aug-09 14:35:37

I don´t think she was criticising.
Sounds more like a general "take it or leave it" bit of advice.

gingernutlover Thu 20-Aug-09 14:40:41

YANBU to feel pissed off - most people are pissed off when they are criticised, evem if they dont show it

however, i dont think she said it to piss you off, she said it to help or try to help I would think. Maybe in a clumsy way, but its probably better to look on it as clumsy well meant help/advice than anything else.

I do agree that being a person who works with children all day then goes home is very very different to being a parent though. I taught reception for 5 years before having dd and GOD ALMIGHTY has my way of thinking changed grin but its the experience of parenting that has given me that perspective, nothing else would od the same

peanutbutterkid Thu 20-Aug-09 14:41:04

It probably would bother me a lot, but I am oversensitive and don't think I should be.

With a nanny aren't you effectively asking her to co-parent with you? Unrealistic to expect her not to express any opinions, no matter what you pay her. I think it's time to develop a thicker skin, say "I disagree" and shrug it off.

edam Thu 20-Aug-09 14:42:07

She may have meant it constructively but it was still rather rude of her.

The approach taken by a nanny is completely different to the approach required from mothers, or fathers, come to that. Ask my sister - an excellent nanny, coped brilliantly with a school-aged girl, a nursery-aged boy with Down's, and baby b/g twins, everyone had a lot of fun and everything got done... then she had her own dd and boy, did she get a shock! It is not the same at all.

Although I bet there are plenty of nannies coping with parents who spoil their children in order to make up for working long hours (the minority of people who work long hours, I'm sure most of them are excellent parents).

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