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Single dad asks if he's wrong to ask his kids' nanny to be 'less fun.'

Single dad asks if he's wrong to ask his kids' nanny to be 'less fun.'


Working with children is often a messy, sticky adventure in negotiating with a toddler who is screaming because snakes can't fly while trying to validate every ridiculous parental concern...

So, when a conflicted single dad decided to consult the moral compass of the internet otherwise known as Reddit's 'Am I the As*hole' about his family's nanny's work techniques, people were quick to help deem a verdict.

AITA (Am I the As*hole) for trying to make my kids' nanny less fun?

I (M35) am a single dad, (kids Ava 7 and Mika 5) and I have a babysitter/nanny, a sewing buddy of my mom's. Nelly (F38) runs some sort of online craft store, so she is pretty flexible hour-wise, which I need for my job. My son has some behavioral issues, tantrums and meltdowns. Other babysitters found him too difficult.

The kids love Nelly, but here is the thing: she spoils them. She turns EVERYTHING into a game (lunch becomes a restaurant, the car a magic pumpkin or a spaceship etc.) or sings songs about brushing teeth.

When one of the kids acts out, she hugs them or carries them around. No scolding or correction. Yesterday I came home early, the living room was dark and they were watching a movie with popcorn, because Ava was sad she wasn't invited to some cinema birthday party.

I see a lot of potential problems with this: I love playing with my kids, but there is a time to play and a time to work. Not everything in life will be fun, some things are boring or sad and they have to learn how to deal with that.

Mika is now often upset if I want to do chores without a sing-and-dance in the evening and on the weekend, and wants Nelly. Tantrums ensue. I want to date again, and I am worried the kids will hate every woman that doesn't act like a clown for them after Nelly.

My mom, who is close to my kids, thinks I should just shut up and be grateful for the flexibility, since she is not harming the kids. I haven't talked to Nelly yet, I don't want to offend her, because I don't have time to find someone new and the kids love her. WIBTA if I told her to tone it down by a lot? And to correct their behavior more sternly?

It sounds like this nanny is going above and beyond to give his kids (who he admits are difficult) are fun and educational time...

Is he jealous that they have more fun with his employee than they do with his 'life isn't all about fun' attitude? Childhood should be a magical, imagination-strengthening experience and it's bizarre of a parent to want to intervene with someone who is expertly nurturing his kids.

Of course, the jury of internet strangers was eager to weigh in on this parenting disaster...

Standard-Park said:

YTA (You're the As*hole) Instead of firing Nelly, you need to step up and be a better parent. Learn the songs and dance with your freaking kids! Idk what you're even complaining about, this woman is literally Mary Poppins. Don't be a Mr. Banks.

crystallz2000 said:

YTA. OP, can you send me her number? She sounds like my DREAM nanny. Seriously, where do you guys live? But are you kidding me? Go ahead and chase this lady away and make your kids miserable so your young children can realize that life is full of disappointment, miserable requirements, and tedious life. Take the magic away. I mean, your oldest is almost.... eight? Time for them to start hating life. Right? That seems to be your philosophy.

KaliTheBlaze said:

How do you not understand that making chores fun makes them more likely to get done? Having positive associations with chores is great for forming good habits that will set them up well for life. Work doesn’t have to be drudgery. Haven’t you ever noticed that you feel better about going to work at a job where you like your coworkers and have a good work environment? Don’t be a Grinch. Embrace the joy. YTA

phalseprofits said:

Yta - if your biggest complaint is that she makes unpleasant tasks pleasant for your children, you need to take a long hard look at your priorities.

So, there you have it!

Everyone agreed unanimously here that this dad is being insecure and weird. Nelly sounds like she's amazing at her job and he is lucky to have her as an employee. Good luck, everyone!

Sources: Reddit
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