I think we can all recall at least one job where a bond hasn’t really formed as expected and the children don’t take to as much as you and possibly the parents had hoped. Some children (quite often the older ones) don’t always jump for joy at a new nanny coming in and taking them away from all that has been normal, but then there are those jobs that pull at the heart strings and life long relationships are built and it doesn’t always feel like work anymore.
We’ve all been in the situation where a parent comes home from a long day at work and calls over for their son or daughter to give them a hug, only to be met with “no mummy I’m colouring with *Lucy” what do you do in this situation?
Nanny jealousy is part and parcel of employing someone to take fantastic care of your children whilst you’re out at work, you’ve spent weeks interviewing nannies and worrying if your child will be in tears every day you leave them, but now you come home and it’s like they would rather hang out with the nanny rather than mummy.
As a nanny how can we soften the blow? How can we be outstanding at our job, but still feel second in line?
1. Be efficient. When you see a parent come home and there is opportunity for them to sit and play and chat with their child then quietly remove yourself from the situation and go and see if there is something you can do elsewhere, tidy up from dinner, fold the washing, get the bags ready for school tomorrow.
2. Work together with the parents, include them in decisions to be made, milestones that have been achieved, share your day with them, be it a verbal hand over or keeping a nanny diary.
3. Gently remind parents that you’re there to help, suggest they go for dinner, and take some time to do things for themselves without feeling guilty, they have you and you are very happy to be there and they won’t be missing out by spending time away.
4. Ask questions, sometimes we all like to be made to feel important, ask the parents questions, give a parent the sense that even though you have control during the day, you are still checking in with them and making them feel part of the day even though they can’t be there.
5. Finally remember ‘m’ comes before ‘n’……..no matter how adorable and lovely those children are, Mummy always comes before Nanny