I love my job. I don’t know of any other jobs where you can play, take naps, color, dress up AND get paid for it. However, there is a reason not everyone is a nanny. I am currently employed by seven families on a part time basis. That’s 20 children, 20 different personalities, 20 different routines, seven different houses, seven different house rules.. Not to mention, 20 possible encounters with kids that have woken up on the wrong side of the bed. Yes. There are those days when nothing you do (even if it involves ice cream) is good enough to top a bad day. You would be surprised at how many objects (ranging from food to chairs) has been thrown at me. There was one day, shortly after I started a job with a new family that stands out. Jo-Jo is a super sweet girl but it would be an insult to the mule if I said she was as stubborn as him. We were getting ready for a Friday movie night but showers had to be taken, the kitchen cleaned and chores done before we could start the movie. To expedite the process, I told Jo-Jo and her brother that the first person to finish everything on our checklist would be able to pick the movie. Both agreed. Shortly after starting her chores she was sidetracked by a toy and Jay took the lead. He eventually “won” and picked the first movie. Jo-Jo could not believe I let Jay pick the movie! She huffed and puffed, yelled, screamed and stomped to the office. When I asked her to join us, she came out screaming and holding the computer chair that she had been sitting on. It ended up in my lap. Lets just say Jo-Jo spent enough time in timeout to realize how bad she had acted. The movie was nearly over when she came out. We have not had a problem with movie nights since and I am happy to report that was the last time a chair was thrown at me.
1) Don’t offer rewards that can put siblings at odds with each other
2) Set a time limit. If the children can’t complete a simple list of chores to complete, stand by your word and don’t give in to let them have a reward
3) If a child is upset, suggest that they have quiet time in their room or other secluded safe area where they can calm down.
4) Unacceptable behavior (especially when it endangers your health or their safety) cannot be tolerated.
5) Have an open line of communication with parents. Behavior like the one displayed by Jo-Jo can be a sign of possible behavior disorder that needs to be diagnosed. Anger management/medication/therapy may be needed to help curb the outbursts.