Archive for February, 2014

The nanny from hell

Saturday, February 8th, 2014

At the start of 2014 I was looking for a nanny. One nanny replied to my job ad
“My required salary is $15 an hour”
then replied immediately after
“My required salary is $20 an hour”

My gut told me “Do not reply to this person” but I ignored it. On the phone, she said that she now wanted $16 an hour. In person, $18 an hour. Two weeks later, after she had already been hired, she told me she made a mistake in her math and for the hours I was giving she required $20 an hour. At the time my wife was dying, the alternate person I was going to hire was also $20 an hour, and she was very nice to my son. So I just gave her the raise.

Two weeks later, she lost my son. I get a call from the neighbor that my son was at his house, and “Did you send him here?” I had not – the nanny was upstairs getting his jacket and my son ran out of the house. I do not blame her for that. What I do blame her for is after I retrieve my son, we are all in the front yard and I walk into the house. Instead of watching him automatically as I expected, the nanny followed me into the house. After a few moments inside the house I asked her “Why are you following me? Where is my son?” I go outside and he is nowhere to be seen. Rather than helping look or call out to him, the nanny is standing there on my porch like a deer in the headlights. A lady at the end of the street waved me down and told me “There’s a kid running around in the street over here. Is he yours?”

That night I call the nanny to fire her. She knows where my son goes to school, where I live, etc. so rather than tell her the truth I tell her I just have decided to watch my son by myself from now on, and I will pay her two weeks severance even though I do not have to. She calls me back with a 20 minute sob story about how she has 3 kids to raise, and turned down another job to take mine, and how she is being punished for doing the right thing. So for perhaps the first time in my life I relent after making a decision.

We have a big fight the next day, partly because she was mad I sent her home early that day. She didn’t want to leave because she wanted her hours. I basically kicked her out of the house. I explain to her I was mad that she lost my son. Rather than accepting responsibility, she blames me. She said my son does not listen to her when I am home, which means that I am watching him instead of her, meaning that if I walk into the house and leave him outside with her it’s still my fault if he runs away. She claims the fact that he ran away in front of her was not a fact, but my opinion.

A few days later I have to take my son to urgent care and tell her to come in a couple of hours later. Again the nanny raises a scene, demanding pay for the missing hours. I refuse, but offer to let her clean the floor if she would like work those hours. She refuses to do that, and does not come in that day.

I was already so angry with her that I could not look her in the eye when she was home. Another few days later the nanny asks for her second raise.
1. Change from hourly to salary so that she basically starts getting paid for the time she does not work
2. Plus 5 Paid vacation days each year
3. Plus 3 Paid holidays each year

We discuss it a few days. From the first day she considered it a done-deal and in fact started leaving early assuming she would get paid for that time. But when she asks me to start pay part of her gas to get to the job site, I reach the limit of my patience. I reply with an angry email. I give her notice. For the sake of her 3 kids, and also to try to forestall revenge on me through my son, I offer to pay her out through March if she doesn’t get another job before then.