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The Life of a Nanny

John on October 16, 2007 at 10:39 am

Today’s Daily Mail carries a story about a nanny to the wealthy which pretty much confirms all the stereotypes of the wealthy you’ve ever heard. Here are a few juicy samples, but it really is worth reading every word:

In my 13 years as a professional nanny to the wealthy upper-middle classes, I have seen it all. There are parents who literally have a phobia about cuddling their own children; one mother would scream at me to take the child away if she happened to be in the same room.

Another woman defended her six-year-old son’s penchant for painting the bathroom wall with his own excrement, saying he was being “creative”.

And then there was the paranoid father whose house was fully kitted out with CCTV cameras and resembled a Big Brother set rather than a family home.

He would ask me to lock the children – twin four-year-old boys – in a room even if I just wanted to use the loo. You can imagine how much his sons liked that.


a surprising number of moneyed mothers I’ve nannied for did not do paid “work” at all, although managing their “staff” – the cleaners, ironers, gardeners, nannies – as well as the social diary was, in their own minds at least, a job in itself.

Money often helped parents lose their senses.

For instance, one rich family sent me and my charge as well as two other nannies to Disneyworld, Florida, for two months simply to get the children out of the way.

The parents flew back and forth from the UK, while we were expected to make several vomit-inducing trips on the fair rides every day.

We were put up in the grand executive suite of the best five-star hotel, but it seemed rather an extravagant way to get the children out from under their feet for the summer.

Then there was the trophy wife who lived in a lavish townhouse in Central London, a mother to twin two-year-old girls and a five-year-old boy, who came home “absolutely exhausted” every night after hours of shopping in Knightsbridge.

Shopping, lunching, having manicures and massages were her “work”.

Yes, there are quite a few women like that living in Newport Beach. This bit about the boy with two mommies is also quite revealing:

Another placement in the Home Counties was for two female lawyers, who were sexual partners, and their 15-month-old girl and a six-year-old boy.

Confusingly, the boy was from one of the woman’s previous marriages. (She had left her husband to move in with her new partner.) The little girl was “theirs” – from donor artificial insemination.

The six-year-old boy was sweet, but despite their protests that he had “adapted well” to this unconventional life, I found him baffled by the whole concept of having two mummies.

Although he had his father, whom he still saw, the fact his sister didn’t have a daddy seemed to worry him.

He seemed preoccupied with death and continually asked dark questions.

“What if the sun falls out of the sky?” was his favourite.

The couple appeared to be nice ladies, but their son was the one who liked to paint with his excrement.

To their credit, having first tried to convince themselves it was simply because he was creative, they did get help and, after various doctors’ consultations, he was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD) and prescribed Ritalin.

A normal upbringing may have solved the problem – as would stopping him consuming gallons of artificial blackcurrant juice (diet is so important) – but for his parents it was easier to give him drugs.

Somehow I suspect these same parents would receive a fawning profile from many US papers.

[HT: Hot Air]

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Category: Marriage & Family |

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