It’s not always easy to watch someone else help raise your child. Whether the other caregiver is a spouse, a village of mom friends or a nanny, the mother might feel the urge to step in and demonstrate how it’s done. Many nannies get frustrated by helicopter parents who don’t empower them to fully step into their roles. For stay-at-home mothers or SAHMs, having a nanny take over the parenting role can be stressful, especially if the kids are aware that their mom is physically present.
If you’re a mom, comparing your mothering skills to those of the nanny can throw a wrench in the relationship. Maybe you come home to a homemade skyline of painted cardboard boxes after running to the store for 45 minutes. Perhaps you’re awestruck by the nanny’s ability to maintain her composure in the face of a tantrum.
It’s easy to feel insecure when you see someone else’s strengths. If you were her boss in any other setting, you’d be delighted by her ability to manage her job with such composure and efficiency. Also, remember that ad you put out that said you wanted someone proactive, a self-starter with excellent managerial skills? Yes, that’s her in action. Instead of viewing your nanny’s assets as threats, appreciate the fact that she’s amazing at what she does.
It’s important for children to have positive role models. Be grateful that your nanny means so much to your kids and manages your home extremely well. Your nanny is not you, but remember why you hired her- so she can be a great extension of you.
Cut Out The Micromanaging
One of the biggest complaints that nannies have is that their SAHM bosses try to control their every move. This is also why nannies avoid working in the home where there are SAHM. Mothers: your nanny may love your kids, but she might find it difficult to work under your nose. You might ruin the relationship by interfering with every decision that she makes. Besides, no one loves a shoulder surfer. You wouldn’t like it either if your boss at work did the same to you.
Parents should stay aware of their inclination to meddle. Try to observe yourself from the outside. If you find yourself harping on everything that your nanny does, perhaps it would benefit you to set up a schedule that allows you to get out of the house while the nanny is working or vice-versa. If your meddling is a result of the nanny constantly doing things wrong, then it’s time to have a conversation with her.
If you’re a nanny, be aware that parents may have a hard time giving up control when you’re around. Don’t take the micromanaging personally; they’re just making sure their children are happy. Instead of taking it personally, have an honest conversation about it with your boss and then give her reasons to trust you.
Keep The Lines Of Communication Open
Nannies and SAHMs can both prevent micromanaging from happening if they communicate openly. Setting up a specific method of interaction can facilitate that.
At the beginning of the relationship, establish a schedule for discussing the day’s events. Some of the topics that you cover should be:
• What went well today/this week?
• What didn’t go so well today/this week?
• Would you change anything about your choices today/this week?
• How can I help you make things easier?
Knowing that you’re going to discuss these questions every day or weekly will help you be open about everything that’s going on and prevent both parties from taking things personally.
Nannies and their employers often become companions. They work together closely and have strong attachments to the children. It’s easy for the lines to become blurred. When nannies and parents become good friends, some standards can slide sometimes. It’s hard to navigate a work relationship that’s also a strong friendship. If you want to continue having a professional nanny-parent relationship, open communication is even more important when you’ve also become good friends.
Trust Each Other
If you used a reputable nanny agency or your nanny came highly recommended by a friend or family and you performed an in-depth hiring procedure, you know that your caregiver is the best one for the job. Mothers should trust the nanny that they hired to do what they think is best. By the same token, nannies should understand when a mother follows her instincts to step in when the child gets hurt, or the baby cries. Staying objective, respecting each other, remaining professional and establishing healthy communication can create a promising relationship between nannies and stay-at-home moms.