7 answers

Difficult Decision: Hire a Nanny or Hire Grandma?

After I had my only daughter 15 months ago, my husband and I decided to only let family keep her while I work two days per week. While we have appreciated everyone's help (i.e. my mom, my mother-in-law, my sister) the arrangements have been changing so frequently and it's becoming very stressful. For example, my mother has always kept her on Weds and Mondays are a toss up between my sis (when her children aren't sick) and my MIL. My mom recently lost her part-time job and she's looking for another one so she may not be available on Wednesdays any longer. My concern is this...do I hire a nanny to come to my home those two days so my daughter stays in one place and has a routine, or do I offer to pay my mother to become my "nanny" and see if she could avoid part-time employment if we can pay her instead. My only reservation with my mother keeping her from now on is the lack of structure she has and the way she thinks her way is better than mine with everything. My husband has great fears when it comes to hiring someone we do not know. So, can any of you offer your advice on this one? Either way, I figure I'm going to pay someone to keep my daughter. I just want to straigten this out before I have another baby.

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More Answers

I would hire a nanny. Be sure to check references thoroughly. Alternatively, you could consider staying home with the little one(s) yourself.

At 15 months of age I would put her in a daycare or preschool situation. There are tons of great ones in the metro area -not just regular daycares, but great pre or "nursery" schools. My son has gone two half days a week since turning one and will be going 5 half days a week starting next week. He LOVES it, and it's been great for him -socialization-wise and learning as well. Kids really need to be around other kids and in situations away from home at least once or twice a week.

What about part time daycare? She would prob enjoy playing with the other childern and daycares are regulated , do background checks, etc of all their employees that would be something you would have to do before hiring a nanny. They also have camera's in all the rooms so everything is monitored , and they can't take your child anywhere without your written consent and they go exactly where they say they are going, not to a friends house or whatever.

If your mother can stick with your rules and your routine for your little one, then I think that family is best. But if you are reluctant about confronting her or if confronting her is going to be a problem, then hire a nanny. My mother lives with us and it does get hard at times even though she tries her best to mind her own business. Good luck!!

I would think that daycare would be a better option than a nanny if you are not sure about your Mom-especially if you are only talking about a couple of days a week. That way your daughter has structure and interaction with other children her own age. My daughter is 2 1/2 and has been in daycare(full time) since 9 weeks of age and she loves it. She comes home and tells me about the songs and colors they learned that day. She gets to play outside on a playground twice a day, eat nutritionally, and they have her on a routine. It can be rough in the beginning b/c she may get sick more often, but it also helps build the immune system. I personally think the social interaction is extremely important and I also found a great facility that my daughter loves. Good luck with whatever you choose!

I would hire a nanny. It seems like it would be really difficult to have your mother as your "employee". You mentioned that she already likes to do things her way, but since you would be paying her I would assume you would expect her to do things your way. I can imagine the arguments. My MIL watched my daughter for a year. She ended up overweight and spoiled. The next year she was in Pre-K which was difficult for her because she was used to eating and doing whatever she wanted when she wanted. We also had to deal with a lot of behavior problems at home. It is some much easier to higher someone to watch your child. That way they do what you say or are fired. Imagine trying to fire your mom:)

I'm a big fan of not mixing family and money--things just get tricky, especially if your mom wants to do things her way. Your way will become more and more important down the road, as you start having to really discipline, potty train etc. I was a stay at home mom for 18 months and was terrified of the thought of nannies, daycare, really anyone tending to my daughter except me! I decided at 18 months that my girl needed more kids to play with and enrolled her in preschool. It has been wonderful!! In fact, she now (she's 2), at her insistence, goes every day from 8-2. I'm a little sad that she likes it at school better than being home with me, but she really loves it there, so I'm going to find a job and add to the family income while she's at school. If you find the right school (and you'll know as soon as you walk in which one is that magic fit for you), she can really benefit from the other kids, a structured enviornment etc and your family can just be family. Another benefit to preschool is it totally wears them out--your daughter will sleep better than she ever did before! That's my opinion. I'm still a bit iffy about nannies though--daycares and preschools are regulated--nannies are all alone... You'll make the right decision whatever you choose--good luck!

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