I have finally learned that when SAHMs start referencing nannies, it is time for me to close my browser. The truth is that most people who are not experienced with nannies know nothing about how it actually works, that there are many ways that it works, and that anyone who has a bad day is going to be more likely to say stupid things to excuse their failures.
I should also say that I have finally learned that there is often a dramatic difference between extended babysitting (which people refer to as nannying) and live-in nannying (which is what I did).
I do not ever try to reason with crazy exhausted SAHMs because I know what they will say. They will say that a nanny could never understand because a nanny can never know the pressure that comes from loving a child with a mother’s love. I don’t think that it would help if I informed these women of how terribly unlucky their children are to have such a “mother’s love.”
I don’t know what it is like to be a mother, but I do know what it is like to get up in the middle of the night to care for a sick child because the parents are ignoring the cries in favor of sleep.
I don’t know what it is like to be a mother, but I do know what it is like to be afraid to take time off because you know that the alternate caretakers–the parents–will not care for the child adequately.
I do not know what it is like to be a mother, but I do know what it is like to never get a real break because if you get lost in your reading during your hours off (when the father is in charge) the two year old might get seriously hurt.
I don’t know what it is like to be a mother, but I know what it is like to have to be excruciatingly consistent with a child because that is the only consistency the child will get.
I don’t know what it is like to be a mother, but I do know what it takes to be creative with discipline because selfish, adult-focused punishment is not even on the table as an option in your mind.
I don’t know what it is like to be a mother, but I do know what it is like to constantly be on guard to attempt to redirect a child’s affection toward someone who does not love him as much as you do, precisely because you love the child and know that someday you will be gone and the children will be left with their mother.
. . .
Comments closed because while I am very grateful to have reached a point of emotional objectivity (it only took 9 years, yo! Further proof that I am not a mother, eh?) I still get disproportionately annoyed by people who can never understand but still speak with such absurd confidence.
- Live Like You Love
- I am thankful 1/20/13