On the heels of the scandalous Bennifer split, there’s been a whole lot of nanny talk. Now, let’s get one thing straight. Affleck denies having an affair with the nanny, 28 year old Christine Ouzounian (that’s a mouthful of a name). But that doesn’t stop the media from running crazy with the story. Because, duh, that makes for more interesting news than we just grew apart.
It wouldn’t bother me, except…I’m a nanny. And I have been for the greater part of ten years. I’ve successfully worked for amazing, affluent, attractive families without ripping their lives to shreds.
The other morning, on my way in to work, I was tuned into a local Charlotte radio station. They were discussing the Bennifer split, and then got into a heated discussion about nannies. What type of nanny to hire. What type of nanny not to hire. How old they should be. What they should look like. Etc, etc. The more I listened, the more my blood boiled.
You should only hire an ugly nanny.
If you’re an attractive girl in your twenties, what are you doing trying to be a nanny?
A nanny should never be left unattended with the father.
The nanny should have no contact with the father, it’s the mother’s job to manage the nanny.
A nanny should only wear the frumpiest clothes.
I am a relatively attractive woman in my twenties. I enjoy makeup and doing my hair. I like trendy (though appropriate) outfits. While it would be perfectly acceptable for me to show up to work in sweats, I rarely do. I believe we all work (whatever that work may be) a little better when we’re put together.
I’m a nanny. And I don’t want to sleep with your husband.
I run my nanny services like a business. I have a contract. I take my work seriously. And I know many, many, many other nannies like myself who do the same. While celebrity situations might be a little different because– let’s face it– some of those women go into those jobs hoping for celebrity and attention and perhaps to steal the husband away, in normal, regular life, I don’t think this is often the case.
The radio show I was listening to threw out a statistic. 25% of marriages have ended due to an issue with the nanny.
That is a gross statistic to me. And in light of all this controversy, nannies are getting a bad reputation.
The truth is, we’re a special breed: nannies. We have to balance a delicate role of being a parent figure to your children without being their parent. We’re intwined in your intimate life. We are comfortable in your home and often fall in love with your family: kids, pets, parents included. It’s a working relationship like none other because the truth is, we do become part of your family. That’s the best case scenario, really. Isn’t that what you hope for? For someone to love your family like you do? Part of hiring a good nanny is hiring a nanny you can trust. That shouldn’t depend on what they look like.
Let this be a gentle reminder to you: basing a decision to hire someone on their age, sex, and/or appearance is discrimination. You might think you’re right in your opinions. And you might actually have a point. But if someone is qualified for the job, and you don’t hire them because they are attractive, that’s a problem.
And the bigger questions I’m often left with in situations like these are: why can’t your husband keep his hands off the nanny? Is the nanny really the issue here?
The truth is, not every nanny wants to sleep with your husband.