Nannies Who Worked For Extremely Wealthy Families Share The Craziest Parts Of Their Job
They didn't like how my car looked so they gave me a new one.
Thanks to all the awesome people on Reddit who shared their experiences. Source in each username.
1. I babysat for some neighbors when I lived in New Mexico. Very rich lawyers with a boy (about 8 years old, named Tyler, as in Tyler Durden, should've been a sign...), and a girl (about 5 years old).
Before the parents even left, the little girl was on the monkeybars in the backyard, and whipped her panties off to pee in the breeze. After the parents left, the boy let [himself] go full steam. He still peed the bed, so he was under orders to wear diapers. Refused to put them on. Refused to brush his teeth. Wanted another bedtime book, and another, and another, and another.....oh wait, he wants the book from daddy's shelf, with the topless Polynesian girls in it....no, he doesn't want tap water, he wants the special filtered water, he can totally taste the difference.
I figured out why the parents built their master suite 100+ ft from the children's rooms. Found out later Tyler claimed I beat him or some nonsense like that because I made him brush his teeth. Never again.
2. How tight they were with money. I would even go so far as to say selective rather than stingy.
3. My roommate nannied for a billionaire who had 7 kids. Only the first kid, a girl, was actually conceived and born from his wife. The other 6 were all carried by surrogate mothers, and they were all sex-selected so they're all boys. Yeah.
"It's SICK, right? RIGHT? Sometimes I look at him, and I hate him. He watched me grow up. Why did he want to marry me??" She only married him to make her family happy.
4. My younger sister nannies for an wealthy couple, and she's mentioned a few things that really threw her off at first.
The biggest thing was how uninvolved they are with their daughter's life. She was born early in October, and by the end of the month, my sister was already spending 80+ hours a week with her. The husband has only been home one day since she started working for them and the wife is gone from 6am-9pm every day.
Then, it was how casual they are with money. They've offered to pay for work on her car countless times, and the wife gave my sister all of her Christmas decorations from last year. Most of them still had their tags on them. She spent $20/ornament and didn't even use them.
5. A few things...
-The drama that is just like TV. The dad in the family I nannied for had a secret daughter and other family for 5 years.
- How money was just thrown around. A $500 rocking chair is the wrong shade of orange? Just throw it in the garbage and go buy a new one. Daughters are fighting with each other over their Barbie dream houses? Calm them down by taking them to the American Girl store for new dolls and then get them a blowout afterwards.
-And yet, despite this, they forgot to pay their bills for three months and got the gas turned off in their house.
6. I work for a middling-wealthy family, have been for two years. My girls don't think they're well-off because they don't have a tennis court or a rock wall, but they know kids who do. They just have no idea how much money they have. The younger one doesn't realize why it's innapproproate to joke about how much money she has stashed away for "chores." She doesn't realize that it's more than I earn in weeks, and that she didn't actually earn it.
7. I used to be an au pair for a super rich family in China. The funny thing was that they already had a nanny. She was extremely poor and had to give a bratty kid everything she couldn't afford for her own kids. The kid even kicked her and she simply tolerated it. The weirdest thing was that whenever we went somewhere as a family (Continue this story on the next page)
The weirdest thing was that whenever we went somewhere as a familyshe was the one taking care of the child while the mother was talking to others. She even slept in his room while his mom had her own bedroom. Personally, I just couldn't deal with how spoiled and entitled the child was. They literally told me it didn't matter if he respected me, he just had to like me.
8. A good friend of mine is a nanny for a very wealthy couple. They own and live in an entire brownstone type building. I think they're both lawyers. He is the source of the wealth, which is largely inherited. He has a job, but it's the kind of job where he never has to show up or do much work at all and it pays him hundreds of thousands a year.
Every day, the wife goes to her job. The husband goes to his floor of the house that nobody is allowed to bother him on. He spends the day smoking pot and lazing about like he's Jeff Lebowski.
That's it. That's all he does. But he doesn't want his kids bothering him, so he locks himself away to pretend he's still in college or something and pays my friend to raise his kid for him.
They're nice enough people. My friend likes her job. But I'll never be able to have much respect for a dude who has all the time and money in the world and he uses it to sequester himself away from his own kids, get high, and watch movies all day.
9. I do tutoring for a wealthy family, and despite the fact that they seem to have come from fairly average backgrounds, they really have no concept of how normal people think of money. I was talking about visiting the library after a session, and they were confused by the fact that I didn't just buy all the books I wanted to read. They also pay me every six months or so, and seem confused that I want money so often - they're good for it, after all. They fly their kids home from their high school sports tours (they play in tournaments all over the continent) to take a driving test and think nothing of it.
They're good people, but weird.
10. In 2013, I was a substitute teacher at a private high school in a very wealthy area. This allowed me to back into multiple tutoring opportunities. I was advised by the front office lady to not advertise an hourly rate. The rates suggested by the families baffled me. $50-100/hr. I also worked at a sporting goods store and made ~$9/hr. The main kid I tutored was embarrassed by his parents wealth (surgeon and family doctor) and where they lived.
Another family I worked for, had a Tesla before they were more common. They wanted me to work for them but I did not have a nice enough car (Ford five-hundred sedan), to drive their children. They were arranging a brand new Chevy Tahoe as a spare vehicle for them but for my use.
All about the status symbols I guess.
11. I briefly worked with a wealthy family a few months ago before I had to leave the job because it was just unbearable. They were pretty nice to me, but terrible to their kid. The kid was 6, for context. These things were more sad than crazy.
The saddest thing I saw was how much money they spent on themselves and paying me, and how little they spent on their kid. I was being paid pretty well (enough to almost match what I was making at my primary job while working half as many hours), the parents would be buying new iPhones, new clothes, wine, etc. Their kid however, had clothes that didn't fit, broken toys that were "too expensive to replace", wasn't enrolled in any after school activities either because it "cost money".
Some other things I noticed was how uninvolved and bad at parenting they were. The kid was 6 still wearing diapers because he hadn't been fully potty trained. When I asked about it, they actually said (Continue this story on the next page)
"Oh we just never fully got around to it, he's scared to go to the bathroom because one time we spanked him because he peed on the floor". He was completely undisciplined and whenever I told him no, he would try and hit me, scream at the top of his lungs, try and bite himself. One time I was with the mom and him in the store, and he tried to take a bunch of candy from a shelf and eat it, and I said he has to wait for his mom to pay for it first, and he LOST it. Tried knocking over shelves, ran around screaming, tried hitting OTHER people, and swearing up a storm. His mom LEFT the store, and said oh that's too much for me to handle, that's why you're here.
In the end I just quit because I couldn't stand them as parents or people. They were so arrogant, always neglecting their children. The day I left, they wouldn't even let me say goodbye to their son, who was crying watching me from a window as I walked to my car. I guess they trained him not to say hi to me and give me nasty looks when I see them in town, because they'll go out of their way to avoid me if we make eye contact in town.
12. How much help they have, and how little time they spend with their own kids! It's gotten a bit more normal now but when I started (kids were 5 months and 3) the mum had 7 more months of maternity leave, I worked 2 days per week, they had another uni student part time for another two days, a full time nanny on Fridays and a house cleaner that came twice a week.
Sometimes I go to work and BOTH parents are there just hanging out while I play with the kids - and they pay me well so it's not like it's cheap! Idk I often get the feeling that they just had kids because they got older and it's expected, not because they actually wanted them.
13. Not really part of the job, but that customer's (yacht cleaning) didn't care how poor the cleaner was. I pull out my flip phone to answer a call and they just kinda turn away like it's gross. One guy dropped his iPhone in the ocean by mistake, said "oops" and grabbed another from a kitchen drawer.
14. Not a nanny but I used to work at a golf club in a very rich community and people would just drop their kids off at the club and we would end up essentially babysitting them in the restaurant. We had one kid who was probably 11 and he was so stingy. He would complain about any upcharge, how our meals didn't give enough for their price, and how what we sold was way cheaper at the store. (which obviously he was way too young to understand overhead costs)
One time after about 10 minutes of his ranting over how he had to pay more for milk than you would in a store I just pointed out to him "I get that its annoying, but we couldn't even buy one meal with an hours worth of pay before taxes."
The LOOK on this kids face was just shock. You could tell he had not true concept of money and earning it and that some people got vastly more than others. He never complained to me about cost again and would often tell them adult golfers how unfair it was that we weren't paid enough. (in his opinion)
Makes me wonder how affluent people teach their children about money beyond to complain about having to use it.
15. The family I work for right now is very wealthy- the live on fifth ave right across from central park. Three things. The first is the clothes. The girls have numerous name brand clothing items- Burberry, Ralph Lauren, Vineyard Vines, Lilly Pulitzer, etc. The 6 year olds backpack was 85 bucks. I get wanting your kids to have nice things to wear, but they're growing fast, and that [stuff's] expensive. The 3 year old outgrew her wardrobe last year, it was all replaced with the same expensive stuff.
Next would have to be scheduling. They want there children to be successful in life, I get it. But every day is (Continued on the next page!)
something- piano, ballet, tennis, Chinese lessons and squash. They have no time to play.
The last part, which is a bit more sad if you ask me, is the lack of connect in the girls and their parents relationship. It could be as simple as scheduling- for instance, the mom doesn't know when ballet and tennis is, I do, or as intense as worries and fears. They confide in me and when I bring it up with the mom she's surprised to learn they're not just always happy because they have nice things. There's definitely something missing there and it shows. The 3 year old slips up and calls me "mama" constantly and it breaks my heart.
16. How incompetent they are. I worked as a nanny for a few months for a wealthy family with two kids to make extra money while in college. I had to get up every morning to get the kids ready for school and then walk them to school because the mom couldn't do it herself. Also the mom wouldn't go anywhere without a nanny present for the kids. Play date at the playground with another family? I would go and watch her kids while she would just sit there and chat with the other parent. It was so weird. Unsurprisingly I was one of 5 nannies they had coming around every week. They spent close to $1000 a week on nannies but didn't want to commit to getting a live in.
17. My mom was a nanny for a couple of rich corporate lawyers years ago. I always remember her saying that at Christmas the kids would get tired from opening so many presents. The unopened gifts would get put away and some weren't opened until months later.
18. I once nannied for a family who had a small room with board games/table top games lining the walls (as an indication of wealth) I was called in on weekends to spend time with the 6 year old and play games with him - basically do anything he asked of me. A majority of the time the mom and grandma were home and in their own room. Once the mom and dad were home and napping. I was basically being paid good money to play with the kid. Of course, the kid was incredibly bossy and fussy when he didn't get his own way. I also received a text after my first few sessions saying that I could bring my own lunch and use their fridge; don't worry, no one has any allergies.
19. The woman played WOW all day and ate spaghetti-o's, the husband was always away, and she was never with her baby. Also, she had a surrogate with twins on the way! I never understood their family or why she wanted more kids.
20. I worked for an extremely wealthy family and when I was going to eat lunch with the kids, I was told "the help" eats in the kitchen. I quit soon after that.
21. I was not nanny, but rather a sort of a personal 'fun activity' guide for three extremely rich children. As in these kids were four places removed from literal royalty.
They held a party to celebrate when one of the kids 'graduated' from P5 which would be the American equivalent of 5th or 6th grade. This was not anything like a birthday party or a trip to Chucky Cheese's. It was held on one of their estates and involved three different caterers. One was for the hors d'oeuvres, one for the main course and one for the desserts. This is not counting the two bartenders - one for adults and another for the underage crowd. By my estimate, they spent over $20,000 on this affair. It was mind boggling.
They invited my father who lives with me as a matter of etiquette, though I was not sure if they expected him to actually attend. I used half my paycheck to buy him something that would not look like he was there as the gardener's tool carrier. He protested that he would not know anyone there but I told him it did not matter. I would introduce him to the parents, their children and the immediate staff and that is all he would need to worry about. He grudgingly accepted.
So we are there and I am working with one of the DJs on setting up the equipment. My dad was enjoying the immense swimming pool and the amazing food. Once he got there, he lost all sense of self consciousness and somehow fit right in. Maybe it was the fact that he changed into a bathing suit and that is sort of an equalizer for everyone.
Anyway, we got the sound system setup and then I was asked to help with the bounce house. This was one that could have been straight out of a Class A Theme Park. It was a huge castle that had a dragon lying on the ground with his tail curled all the way around it. That took well over an hour to get staked down, inflated, and tested out.
So then they tell me I am OK to take a 30 minute break for some food. By this time the place is packed. Easily a hundred adult and child guests. I go over to the buffet and fill my plate. Here is where I finally realized how far apart our worlds were. I was shocked to find ()
I was shocked to find that there were no paper plates one might expect to find. They were literally using these Royal Albert china dishes at a kid's party. I had my food and was about to sit down when this kid throws a huge beach ball my way, yelling "Think fast!" Well I did not, and I ended up dropping the plate on the ground. It shattered into thousands of pieces. I felt horrible. No one even blinked once. Someone came by, swept it all up and the day carried on as if nothing happened. That plate cost 60.00. I turned around and someone else had already grabbed another one and filled it up with the same food I had chosen before.
That night I asked my dad what he thought of that whole scene. He muttered something about a huge waste of money. But then he said he was extremely disappointed with me because he said I embarrassed him in front of his "new friends". That was 2 years ago, and he still blames me that they never call him back. Somehow I think he does not get it yet.
23. The craziest part was this ultra wealthy couple, whose bedroom is about as big as my house, stiffed me my last pay check.
24. I have a close friend who was a nanny for a couple years. She routinely called me to vent about the parents. She was paid well and had many perks but she was a live in so she was always there and was frequently asked to help on her days off.
I flew out to visit her for her birthday weekend for birthday shenanigans. She had previously asked her employers if she could have that Friday off seeing as she had company coming in. They gave her this huge guilt trip then refused. The dad ended up having the day off and spent it alone up in his study then proceeded to go to the gym and meet friends while I helped my friend watch the kids.
25. I once worked for a billionaire family and there were a ton of weird things that went on in the family. It was only the mom bringing in most of the money. Anyway, the dad was stay at home, but didn't really want to be responsible for his two kids, so I was hired! There were entire rooms of the house that the kids weren't allowed inside, and I never saw anyone else go in either. They must have had at least 5 regular staff members at the house (landscape, cook, nanny (me), and other people who were there for god knows what). The kids were never given any rules, and sometimes the dad would randomly get bored and come hang out with us for a couple hours, just wanting a friend (me) to hang out with. It was kind of like I was hired to be a nanny for the kids and a standby friend for the dad. Very weird. The weirdest part? The parents often texted me bizarre requests after hours to pay me to do extra things here and there. I didn't mind, because I needed the money and they paid well, but it was usually things that they just couldn't be bothered to do Here are a few:
- "Our son can't finish his project and we don't have time to help him. If we send you the papers do you think you could do it for him tonight?" Took me 10 minutes, 50 bucks.
- "Do you think you could look up a good recipe for soup?" No specificity here, just soup. I sent them my grandma's recipe. Made 50$ thanks Grandma!
- "We're thinking of ordering new blinds. Could you pick them out?" 30 minutes, 200 bucks.
-"We think our son might be looking at porn. Could you go through our internet history and let us know?" (this one wasn't off hours, I just did it while the kids were doing their homework. Instead of ratting him out, I had a conversation with the boy about how it's perfectly natural but how porn creates very unrealistic expectations of what sex is. Then I taught him how to delete his internet history. Yeah, I'd like to think I'm a cool nanny."
- "Would you mind doing the Christmas shopping this year?" They sent me a list that the kids had written. It included an iphone each (they're 6 and 9), about 20 random toys, designer clothing, and a real vending machine. I went on Amazon and ordered everything to their neighbour's house, (who was a total sweetheart) and brought it over the next day. They told me to order whatever I wanted for myself up to 1000$. Took approximately 1 hr of my time.
27. My friend's son is an exceptionally well paid banker in NYC. His grandchild (just one) has 4 nannies. At 2 this child couldn't walk because it gets carried everywhere, can only speak Spanish because that is the only language it hears. The walking thing is a problem because if the kid can't stand up properly how on earth is it going to learn to ski?
Laws should always protect the people, ALL the people!
Laws are amiable. We know this. They often change with the times, with enough revolution that is. Laws are there to protect and serve, however they can be too complex and just downright odd and often absurd.