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Childcare

Au pair smokers

40 replies

artist67 · 07/09/2006 15:12

Our Au pair has arrived last week and seems o.k

However, I am I am really p?ed off. I made very clear in the advert and at interview, ?non smoker?as it won't be tolerated, which I confirmed with her, she is in fact an habitual smoker (concealed fag stubs at the back door) constantly reeking of fags, toxic stench around the house.

I know in the big scheme of things its may seem petty, but I really didn't want an habitual smoker looking after the kids, It?s the whole dependency thing of nipping out to the back door I suspect whilst kids are playing.

As I have had all this before with a previous nanny and our kids smelling of smoke despite her saying she never smoked on duty ?.

So what now? before I jump in feet first ?

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MamaG · 07/09/2006 15:13

OH I would hate that and would defo say something immediately. Awful.

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expatinscotland · 07/09/2006 15:13

Sack her.

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anniediv · 07/09/2006 15:15

Well, if you mentioned it at advert and interview, she must have lied then and said she didn't smoke? Quite justified to get shot of her. And FWIW, I don't think it is petty at all.

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southeastastra · 07/09/2006 15:17

is she a good au pair? is it really worth sacking her just because of this? can't you tell her to go outside for a smoke?

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expatinscotland · 07/09/2006 15:18

she does go outside for smokes from the sound of it, but the advert said no smokers.

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dizzydo · 07/09/2006 15:21

sack her! She lied at the interview so has displayed that she is not that honest, I wouldnt trust her. Also would absolutely hate that smell of stale smoke everywhere and what happens when you are all out you will come back to a stinking house!

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bran · 07/09/2006 15:21

I think if she lied to you about whether she smokes then there is a strong possibility that she will lie to you about whether she smokes around the children.

Also, if she was prepared to lie to you about something that she must have known you would pick up on, then can you be sure that she will respect your opinion/houserules at all in the future?

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balancingact · 07/09/2006 16:01

I would sack her. Sorry, if you said non-smoker -you meant non-smoker - not no smoking around the kids.

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artist67 · 07/09/2006 16:25

Its only been a week and so far, with jobs and kids she?s been great and a very positive attitude and generally pleasant, and it is early days and cant say I know her enough

But she has lied therefore I don?t trust her, and I hate the smell of smoke and the kids being around the smell. My MIL smokes and was at my house yesterday, and went out side to smoke so, I think Au pair has took as ?.it may be tolerated if found out, We don?t have much choice with MIL and thankfully she doesn?t live with us.

She?s also doing internet dating, I?m now thinking all sorts, of her giving out address details.

Dh thinks I am over reacting and should spell it out to her about smoking out to her that she leaving if smoking whilst looking after the kids, out of her bedroom window, in the garden, or smelling of smoke around the house.

I disagree I think if she a committed smoker she will do it regardless?

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WigWamBam · 07/09/2006 16:34

For me it wouldn't be acceptable - you asked for a non-smoker, and you haven't got one. Smoking outside wouldn't be OK with me either; smoke and its effects hangs around for ages, so even if she smokes outside your children are still going to be affected by her smoking.

The trust issue would be a big one for me - I wouldn't want someone I couldn't trust looking after my children. I'd have to let her go and find someone else I could trust.

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anniediv · 07/09/2006 16:44

But she lied to you!!! I wouldn't care how good someone was at their job if I couldn't trust them. I would always be thinking if she lied about that what else could/would she lie about.

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HRHQueenOfQuotes · 07/09/2006 16:49

THat's not on - she lied to you. Find someone you can trust.......at least if she'd admitted to you at the interview she smoked you could (perhaps if you really really liked her) come to an agreement about when and where she could/couldn't smoke. (and if she was serious about the job she could have 'complied'.

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FluffyCharlotteCorday · 07/09/2006 16:55

One, she lied, two, she smells.

There is absolutely no way I'd have a smelly au-pair in my house. I once had one with BO - it was excrutiating, but something had to be said, because I couldn't live with it. Smell of smoke is the same for me.

To be fair to her, she may have decided that she was giving up smoking when she answered the ad and er... hasn't. However, now is the time to give up if she wants to keep her job. I'd just say to her, she has to give up or leave, if that means getting nicotine patches, acupuncture or hypnoisis, fine, but it's that or the sack. Call me draconian, but smokers stink and while you might have to put up with that in the school playground, putting up with it in your own home is just asking too much.

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HRHQueenOfQuotes · 07/09/2006 17:05

but smokers stink

I know they do generally - but I love having a dig at a very close friend of mine - I've know her nearly 4yrs now - but until last year had never smoked in front of her as either she was pregnant, or I was pregnant. She's always said the same thing "I can tell you a smoker a mile off because they stink".........imagine the look of amazement on her face when I lit up last year - it was priceless - especially when I told her I'd been smoking since before I met her.

But then I have to say I'm quite a wierd smoker - I always wear a cardigan/jacket over whatever I'm wearing when I have a cigarette (even when it's roasting outside), have a packet of strong mints on me at all times, wash my hands when I go inside (only ever smoke outside - or in pubs etc) take my jacket/cardigan off and hang it in the same place in the cupboard under the stairs, and even brush my teeth sometimes!

I also have quite an embarassing habit of checking which way the wind is blowing before I sit down for a puff........even DH thinks I'm nuts with that one - especially if we're out for a drink in a smokey place and I move to sit the opposite side from him as there's a draft blowing smoke towards him.......


Anyhow, I digress - get rid of her - she's a liar.

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syrup · 07/09/2006 17:15

I'm fairly certain there are many true non-smoking au Pairs out there looking for work so I would be tempted to give her the "give up or get out" choice. I also had a new AP start this week and thank goodness is a total non smoker and I know I could not tolerate having someone who lied and smoked looking after my children.

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artist67 · 07/09/2006 17:27

HRH - wish Au pair was more like that, but above all I prefer honesty and i agree with all views

Au pair is currently enrolling at college, I have spoke to DH about my conclusion, he thinks she possibly didn't understand although clearly stated in the advert at interview about houserules smoking was 1. he thinks she doesn't understand half of what we say! and that will be her response. I know i do talk a lot, and i am use to good English speakers.

DH is more concerned about the internet dating

I think she it was her resposibility to ensure she clearly understood the advert.

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syrup · 07/09/2006 17:34

Call me cynical but I expect she understood her terms/conditions and perks (pocket money etc) so i am doubtful if non smoker were misundersood!!!! I hope you sort it out sooner rather than later as I think the language schools get a bit funny about enrolling and then not pitching up and she may not be able to enrol else where if you give her the boot. (well that was certainly the feeling I got when I took my AP for her enrolment)

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Californifrau · 07/09/2006 17:38

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

southeastastra · 07/09/2006 17:39

ask her nicely to smoke in the garden, if she doesn't adhere to the rules then go with finding someone else. maybe she didn't understand, or was desp for the job.

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jura · 07/09/2006 17:45

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FillyjonktheFluffy · 07/09/2006 17:49

Well, I think you have a perfect right to sack her, and I would probably do this, (in my dreams would I have an au pair, but still...) but I am neurotic about smoke.

I don't think smokers actually realise how much they stink.

Secondhand smoke, ie smoke from clothes, on people's breath etc is still dangerous.

But I am a complete nut job when it comes to cigarettes smoke...ex smoker...always the worst...

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artist67 · 07/09/2006 17:50

southeast - she does smoke in the garden, but I have a problem with the smell and the whole dependency thing, i guess if she's a committed smoker she will be off to the garden when looking after the kids or sneaking off when in the park with the kids.

DH suspected when she arrived and thought she was smoking out the window of her room when she thought we were all asleep, which is a fire Hazard

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HRHQueenOfQuotes · 07/09/2006 17:51

"i guess if she's a committed smoker she will be off to the garden when looking after the kids or sneaking off when in the park with the kids. "

Not if she's serious about her work she won't......

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southeastastra · 07/09/2006 17:53

well sack her then, it's obviously something you feel strongly about, she's only smoking not snorting cocaine off your coffee table

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artist67 · 07/09/2006 18:03

Jura - we put up with MIL and she doesn't realize how much she smells and how irritable she get when deprived, i would opt for absolutely non smoking.

DH is more tolerant than me ( because he was brought up with MIL) and believes that cultually is more accepted and Au pair she this as no big deal.

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