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Positive Nanny Stories

17 replies

dejags · 16/08/2005 10:35

Following on from the Difference between nannys and parents thread I just wanted to say thanks for the positive stories.

It's hard for me to accept that I have to go out to work. My kids' well-being depends on it right now. I know things aren't written in stone and that once things stabilise our choices may be different.

I was absolutely happy with my decision to hire a nanny before I realised that this may impact my kids in a negative way (spurred on by the other thread). Don't get me wrong - I am in no way upset by others' opinions so I am not spoiling for an argument, I am having real reservations.

On the other hand I worked full time after I had DS1 - He was looked after by a Nanny from 5 months old to 15 months old then his granny looked after him until he was 22 months old then a full time childminder. His childcare has had only a positive effect on him, so why am I so anxious about this now?

OP posts:

Issymum · 16/08/2005 10:47

I can give you positive stories Dejags. We have had three excellent nannies. They have all contributed significantly to the dds' development, cared for them lovingly, imaginatively and immaculately and, in the case of the last two who have lived-in, somehow added to the general well-being of the whole family.

In mid-October we will change nannies as our current nanny is returning to New Zealand. Our new nanny is a late 20's Kiwi primary school teacher for Reception through to Y2 who doesn't want to supply-teach whilst she is over here. As DD1 is starting school and DD2 is starting pre-school this September, I think she too will bring something that I couldn't provide.

My only gripe about our nannies is that they make me feel rather inadequate. They can never displace me as the DDs' mother and they would never try to do so, but somehow between the cake-baking, art projects, sticker charts and walks in the woods and the refraining from shouting and Cbeebies, I can't help wondering if they are better at child-care than I am!


frogs · 16/08/2005 10:57

I've had several excellent people looking after various permutations of my children over the years. They've all had their little ways, but the care the children have received has been excellent, and I think it's been fantastic for them to be able to benefit from other people's input and learn to trust and love them.

Nanny horror stories make excellent news stories and great gossip fodder, whereas "Mother goes out to work -- children thrive while being looked after by loving and enthusiastic nanny/childminder" doesn't. As long as you exercise due caution and good sense in choosing an nanny and maintaining a good relationship, there's no reason to assume your children will suffer.

In my case, they've done much better out of carers than they would have done by me: do I have the energy for elaborate sponge-painting projects (with concomitant clearing up)? For spending entire summer holiday afternoons hanging out at the park? Can I face the hell that is a soft play centre? Can I be arsed to faff around doing baby swimming, or read the same story 25 times in a row? I can not, but fortunately a good nanny can. What's not to like?


dejags · 16/08/2005 10:57

Thanks Issymum!

You know I think you may have hit the nail on the head. I am secretly afraid that the Nanny will do a better job than me and relinquishing control (particularly of the baby) is actually harder than I thought it would be.

DH and I have been really lucky to have an extended maternity/paternity leave together, I think that for both parents to be able to spend the first 11 months of their baby's life together is pretty rare. So for both of us to start back in demanding jobs within 2 weeks of one another with little or no notice is coming as a massive shock.

OP posts:

frogs · 16/08/2005 10:58

Dear me, 'excellent' seems to be my word of the week.


dejags · 16/08/2005 11:00

thanks Frogs - I must admit that I do like doing those things but on my terms only. I know in my head they will be fine but this little voice nags me about the love they will get (which was exacerbated by the other thread).

[dejags reminds herself to refrain from becoming an overbearing mother]

OP posts:

dejags · 16/08/2005 11:00

nothing wrong with excellent - most bodacious would be a bit worrying though

OP posts:

Issymum · 16/08/2005 11:02

Dejags: "I am secretly afraid that the Nanny will do a better job than me". In some ways she will, because her entire job is looking after your child, whilst you are trying to juggle that with catching up with housework and shopping, seeing friends, spending some time with DH or just getting a few hours to rest before you return to your other job. But the really tough and unfair side of this for nannies is that however brilliant and focussed their care is and however compromised and exhausted yours is, children ultimately prefer their parents.


frogs · 16/08/2005 11:29

I haven't read the Nanny thread, as I assumed it would turn into a flame-fest.

I think my children have felt loved by their nannies, and it has been a positive experience for them to learn to trust people other than me. Also I'm aware that I can be a bit controlling, and I think it's good for the children to be able to try themselves out on different people without me hovering over them.

IME it's natural to feel differently about care for your second child than the first. I was 27 when I had dd1 (unplanned) and just trying to get a career underway. Although I adored her, and never regretted having her, I did initially feel slightly stifled by the overwhelming demands of a little baby. I can still remember feeling exhilerated the first time I left her with a carer for a few hours, realising I could go off without having to lug all the baby gear and the mental detritus that goes with it.

With ds I had to go back to work much earlier than I wanted to (he was 3 months) and although I knew and trusted his nanny, I was gutted, and spent my last week of mat. leave sobbing hot tears onto his little fuzzy head. I think second time round the practicalities of babycare seem much less onerous, and you are more aware of how quickly each phase passes.

But he was fine, I was fine, and it was all okay. And now I must go and post my subscription to Simply Childcare in the hope of finding a lovely Nanny to take dd2 to Ticktock etc. while I try to Get Things Done.


Blu · 16/08/2005 11:43

Dejags, my DS was as happy as anything with his Nanny. She was great with him, and she still keeps in touch, visits him regularly, b'day presents etc - and there's nothing in it for her, she already has the great reference, so it can only be genuine interest / affection. My brother had exactly the same experience when a nanny looked after his kids.

We have gone for 'ordinary mum' type nannies.


dejags · 16/08/2005 11:44

Thanks all, as usual you lot can be relied on to make me feel much better.

OP posts:

jules27 · 16/08/2005 13:49

Hi all, having been a very good nanny for over twenty years ,i have often had this question asked by my employers , how come you do it better than me. Well just to make all you mummies feel much better, once i became a mummy (to two of my own and i step child) me being a perfect nanny went out of the window. I long for my weekend off ,my nights out and my hard earned for pay packet.I have to juggle a family,housework and trying to fit in part time work. I,m still good at taking care of other peoples children ,but Please remember that at the end of the day however good(excellent) you nanny is your children will always love you best..


NannyL · 16/08/2005 19:36

Can i say THANK YOU so much for starting a nice thread about nannies

I personally only know of lovely nannies, all of whom id willingly leave my own baby with (if i had one and could afford it!)


PrincessPeaHead · 16/08/2005 19:57

I have had some spectacularly good nannies, particularly the one I have now (conming on for 3 years). The older children really like her, the little one adores her, she is patient, kind, fun, organised, and makes our whole family run more smoothly. Woulfdn't be without her. And I personally think that having one-to-one care in the home from a kind and constant presence is infinitely preferable to a nursery for a very young child...


frannyf · 16/08/2005 21:11

I can give another positive story from the nanny's viewpoint - having worked as one for 8 years before I started my family, I can honestly say it's the best job I could have chosen. Don't really know many other nannies, but presumably there must be plenty of others who enjoyed it as much as me, so there genuinely are some people out there who will do their best to give your child as much love and care as you would wish.

As mentioned by jules, it is much much easier to be a calm, reasonable, firm, and imaginative carer when you can give the children back at the end of the day and go home. I wish I could be as consistent and patient with my own son, as I was when I was working!


jules27 · 17/08/2005 19:29

Frannyf,oh so true , i occassionally have had a little pang of guilt as i wonder if my children might not have got the person i am as a nanny . It is easy to take care of children when the emotional rollercoast of motherhood isnt in the way . I lose my patience with my eldest(teenager)more than i have ever done in my whole career.I am a good nanny and have always loved job , i am so glad that i was given the oppertunity to take care of all my wonderful charges.Parents have to also remember that nannying it our career and we strive to be the best, as they do in their careers.


dejags · 23/08/2005 07:43

Quick update:

We have hired a lovely nanny for our children. She is well qualified including modules on Nutrition, Child Psychology and Early Years Development. She remedial teaching experience and was with her last family for 7 years. Comes with glowing references having left to move cities.

The kids seemed to like her and we have very similar views on raising kids.

So here's hoping

Thanks for all your input.

OP posts:

uwila · 23/08/2005 13:01

Oh, that's great news.

We have a new nanny as well and so far she is wonderful. Yahoo.... what a reliefe it is to find a good one. Oh I don't want to jinx it though. Better go knock on some wood.

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