Over Served

I’ve posted a couple comments on a fellow blogger’s post entitled The Nanny Culture and I know that a healthy debate exists on this topic. Sure, it’s awesome to have someone at your beck and call to help you with your kids. But I think my beef is 1) with parents who feel that the hired help replaces their responsibilities, and then I have to deal with their angry, resentful kids at the playground when one of the bad seeds bashes my daughter in the head with a rock (ok, hasn’t happened yet, but could) and 2) that you just can’t trust anyone fully when it comes to your kids. I actually called the police on one NYC nanny… that’s another (sad) story.

But yesterday, I saw something rather disturbing. I was at my daughter’s swimming school getting her dressed post-shower. She’s 3 years old. There was a nanny toweling off her charge post-shower. This girl must have been 11 years old.

I could be wrong, but I seem to remember that at that age, I was showering, drying and dressing myself. This girl appeared to be physically and mentally capable of all three, yet there was the nanny aiding the process. It was just too weird.

And it made me think… how do some of these kids function in the real world? Or do they just… not? Perhaps many never see the real world (by my definition).

I know my daughter, and she likes to be served. The few times that she is, when we leave her with our maid/part-time nanny, she takes full advantage. I know that if I do go back to work, and hire the staff I would require to feel secure in doing so, things could get out of control. It could be my daughter standing there, waiting to be toweled off and dressed, in her pre-teen and teen years.

So in a world where kids may be “over-served,” how do you convince yours that, as excellent as it appears, it’s not such a good idea?

This entry was posted in Culture Conflicts, Foreigner Insights, Living in Sao Paulo, Motherhood and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Over Served

  1. Rachel says:

    This is so common it’s crazy! I have seen parents/nannies spoon feeding 8 and 9 year olds at restaurants!

    • That is WACKY. What happens when these kids go to college!

      • Érica says:

        First time here…
        When they go to college they have no idea how to get a bus, how to find a book in the library and stuff like this. Of course this is about the ones who can’t drive yet, because as soon as they turn 18 they get cars. And their friend, aka me, got only the license and teach them how to use the library.
        Some people ask me if I am not afraid of getting buses and walking in the city alone. I know, it is not that safe, but what should I do? Hire a nanny to take care of a 19yo? They also say: It is incredible that you can cook, and clean the house, do the laundry while your parents are traveling.

        • Well, if you ever decide to live in the Western world, you’ll fare much better than your friends. I went to graduate school with a number of foreigners, many of which had experiences similar to the Brazilian privileged child. Believe me, some (not all but many) had a tough time managing school AND their laundry. Thanks for your comment! Welcome!

  2. Ray Adkins says:

    This is a complete absurd!
    I hope it really ins’t as common as it appears to be.
    I can asure you it would raise eyebrows from most middle and upper class families I ever knew in Sao Paulo.

  3. Danielle says:

    They just have their parents and paid help do everything for them their whole lives. It continues into adulthood. They marry equally dependent partners and continue to pay maids and nannies and service people to do everything for them and their lives are empty and they are annoying.

    No, I have no experience with these people whatsoever.

  4. HA! Me neither. Definitely not related to any of them…

  5. Pingback: Brazilian Challenge Day 76: Baby Food | born again brazilian

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