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  #1  
Old 10-03-2011, 06:22 AM
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A DCM called me just now. She told me that her son's father backed out on them and is no longer helping them out. As such, she said that she was really sad but she just couldn't afford daycare anymore. She told me that she'd be trying to find a different (higher paying) job, and trying legal means to get child support, and she would try to bring him back when she could.

I made a snap decision--I asked if there was anything I could do to help, maybe give her a break on the rate until she gets back on her feet. She said that she and the dad had each been paying half and that was really all she could afford. So, I offered to charge her only half for awhile until she gets back on her feet.

She was so grateful, I think she was almost in tears. I feel so good, being able to help a single mom out when she really needs it. It will be tough for us, as we are barely squeaking by as it is, but we do what we gotta do. Clients are hard to come by around here these days, and GOOD clients like this family are even harder to come by. I love the boy and he's been here for a year now.

If I worked for someone else, I wouldn't have been able to make that decision to help someone out who needs it, to do a kindness to someone in trouble. I have done my time working for a heartless large corporation...and I hated it. I like being a small business, I like helping out when it's warranted. I like being able to make decisions for myself.

(Besides, half the fee is way better than no fee.)
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Old 10-03-2011, 06:25 AM
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I was just gonna say that half fee is better than no fee! Especially for a good client. Good for you! I bet that mom will stay with you for as long as the child needs care because of your generosity and understanding.
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:12 AM
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That is awesome it is nice knowing you can help out when wanted/needed.
Good for you
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Old 10-03-2011, 08:10 AM
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Maybe to take some of the burden offf you, you could ask her to provide lunch/ snacks for him.
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Old 10-03-2011, 08:51 AM
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That's a huge cut in pay.

Just keep in mind that from this point on.. regardless of their circumstance... that this rate IS the rate.

To her it's not a discounted rate or a deal. It will be for a few weeks but a month or so down the line it will just be the cost of child care.

Don't expect ANYTHING for it. Don't expect gratitude or them keeping the child home when he is sick, they are on vacay, or when they have early outs.

If you expect NOTHING out of it and understand this is now the cost of child care for this kid at your house then it should go great.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:21 AM
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That's a huge cut in pay.

Just keep in mind that from this point on.. regardless of their circumstance... that this rate IS the rate.

To her it's not a discounted rate or a deal. It will be for a few weeks but a month or so down the line it will just be the cost of child care.

Don't expect ANYTHING for it. Don't expect gratitude or them keeping the child home when he is sick, they are on vacay, or when they have early outs.

If you expect NOTHING out of it and understand this is now the cost of child care for this kid at your house then it should go great.
Now I know that I do not have to defend myself or my choices to you but...this is one of the places that you are very cynical I think, and have a hard time ever giving ANYONE the benefit of the doubt. This is NOT a flaky client; I had my doubts when she started (young and single) but she is a fantastic daycare parent. I would NOT have done this for anyone I didn't trust.

I understand that you've been doing this for a long time, nanny, but I really think that along with experience this has given you a heaping helping of cynicism. You rarely (if ever) seem to think that our clients are anything but out to get us, to screw us over, and to get more than their money's worth. Maybe many are, maybe MOST are, but that does not mean all are. Many daycare parents do keep their kids home when sick, pay on time, pay extra when needed, and take a leg up when it's offered.

She did not call me up asking for a concession. She apologized for short notice and offered me money for this week and next if it would help. She is NOT one of the parents you seem most familiar with. I read people well, and I trust my gut. When she finds a better job with more hours and better pay, she'll start paying me more again--I KNOW this. I TRUST this. I TRUST her, and I TRUST my impression of her and my feelings about her.

I've never been a single mom, but I sure have been in positions where I desperately wished there was someone to cut me a break, give me a hand, and help me out of a sucky situation. I'm in one of those situations right now...and I chose to pay it forward by helping someone else out.

Watch the way you say things...it comes off harsh, cynical, and entirely unfair sometimes.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:38 AM
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Wow, first. Let me say. You absolutely rock. Period. Kindness such as this is rare. And I'm sure mom treasures it. Also. Three years from now when her neighbor needs someone, she will remember you, your compassion. And pass along your name. You are sowing seeds of ' faith, hope, and love. '. Those seeds sprout in surprising places. It could be a new client, your car not having a flat on the next trip, or anything. You never know. You did what your heart felt was right. That feeling alone is worth more than the lost money to most people. It will come back to you. :-).

Personally I would give it some time and if it looked like she was doing better reevaluate the discount. If your feeling is right, and she knows you are struggling too I'm sure she will try real hard to get things back on track.

I've done things like this before and other than one family, it turned out great in a few months.

Good luck and THANK YOU. For using your heart to guide you.
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  #8  
Old 10-03-2011, 09:40 AM
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Good job, Silver!
I hope your mom finds a new job and that dad smartens up and starts paying child support! In the meantime, know you've done a good deed for the sake of that child, and his momma!

I agree with the PP about snacks/lunch - would help in the way of cutting costs with this particular child!
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
Now I know that I do not have to defend myself or my choices to you but...this is one of the places that you are very cynical I think, and have a hard time ever giving ANYONE the benefit of the doubt. This is NOT a flaky client; I had my doubts when she started (young and single) but she is a fantastic daycare parent. I would NOT have done this for anyone I didn't trust.

I understand that you've been doing this for a long time, nanny, but I really think that along with experience this has given you a heaping helping of cynicism. You rarely (if ever) seem to think that our clients are anything but out to get us, to screw us over, and to get more than their money's worth. Maybe many are, maybe MOST are, but that does not mean all are. Many daycare parents do keep their kids home when sick, pay on time, pay extra when needed, and take a leg up when it's offered.

She did not call me up asking for a concession. She apologized for short notice and offered me money for this week and next if it would help. She is NOT one of the parents you seem most familiar with. I read people well, and I trust my gut. When she finds a better job with more hours and better pay, she'll start paying me more again--I KNOW this. I TRUST this. I TRUST her, and I TRUST my impression of her and my feelings about her.

I've never been a single mom, but I sure have been in positions where I desperately wished there was someone to cut me a break, give me a hand, and help me out of a sucky situation. I'm in one of those situations right now...and I chose to pay it forward by helping someone else out.

Watch the way you say things...it comes off harsh, cynical, and entirely unfair sometimes.
Nah

I've been advising providers for many years and I've seen your exact scenario played out over and over again. A pretty new client (one year is a very new client) who has something.. in this case "single mother" that defends the free.

The discourse begins with simple: The mom gets a new phone... a nicer phone than you have... then they come in with a fresh manicure when you thought they were at work. Then it's a weekend away and you realize that had to be some serious gas money... Then it's the promotion they are SO excited about with narry a word about putting your salary back up to as it was before. Next thing you know you start looking at what they have... what they spend their money on... and before you know it you realize the discount you just gave up is being spent on special.

Happnes over and over. It's not cynicism. It's experience.

You "could" be the one. You "could" be the one to spot the one who can manage the free and do everything they can to protect it and cherish it. You could have the one that will do everything in their power to get you back to square whether you ask for it or not. You "could" have the one who will forego all things special and make sure that any extra goes to you. You "could" have the one who keeps their kid out of child care every possible minute so that you can make as much profit as possible with the new deal.

That "one" would be pretty hard to spot with only a year of experience with them.

The other concern to me is that she is even considering taking your offer. When she gave you notice she had to have had a plan of what to do. Her choice to take your offer instead of doing what she intended to do before she gave you notice is a red flag to me.

I hope I'm wrong. I really do.

Last edited by nannyde; 10-03-2011 at 09:53 AM.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
Now I know that I do not have to defend myself or my choices to you but...this is one of the places that you are very cynical I think, and have a hard time ever giving ANYONE the benefit of the doubt. This is NOT a flaky client; I had my doubts when she started (young and single) but she is a fantastic daycare parent. I would NOT have done this for anyone I didn't trust.

I understand that you've been doing this for a long time, nanny, but I really think that along with experience this has given you a heaping helping of cynicism. You rarely (if ever) seem to think that our clients are anything but out to get us, to screw us over, and to get more than their money's worth. Maybe many are, maybe MOST are, but that does not mean all are. Many daycare parents do keep their kids home when sick, pay on time, pay extra when needed, and take a leg up when it's offered.

She did not call me up asking for a concession. She apologized for short notice and offered me money for this week and next if it would help. She is NOT one of the parents you seem most familiar with. I read people well, and I trust my gut. When she finds a better job with more hours and better pay, she'll start paying me more again--I KNOW this. I TRUST this. I TRUST her, and I TRUST my impression of her and my feelings about her.

I've never been a single mom, but I sure have been in positions where I desperately wished there was someone to cut me a break, give me a hand, and help me out of a sucky situation. I'm in one of those situations right now...and I chose to pay it forward by helping someone else out.

Watch the way you say things...it comes off harsh, cynical, and entirely unfair sometimes.
You are awesome Silver!!! I think you are doing a wonderful thing and I believe in karma.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:47 AM
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I will weigh in here and say "awesome"! I was a single parent and now what that's like, i never got[or expected]a cut in daycare rate as i was with an agency. I now have a DCM in almost the exact situation as yours, and she was unemployed for two months. I gave her a small fee for her daughter to come two days after school, just to keep her in the loop. she started a new job today and will be paying a little more to me as she now needs before school. i felt like you, why lose a good family if you can make it work! I am glad i did, so you should too! It does feel good to be able to make those decisions!
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:54 AM
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I'm on year 24, and have had only one mom of about 347 families who took the kind of advantage of me that you describe Nanny. Maybe I'm lucky? How many have taken advantage of you to make you feel so strongly about this? I'm sure people here aren't that different than there.

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Nah

I've been advising providers for many years and I've seen your exact scenario played out over and over again. A pretty new client (one year is a very new client) who has something.. in this case "single mother" that defends the free.

The discourse begins with simple: The mom gets a new phone... a nicer phone than you have... then they come in with a fresh manicure when you thought they were at work. Then it's a weekend away and you realize that had to be some serious gas money... Then it's the promotion they are SO excited about with narry a word about putting your salary back up to as it was before. Next thing you know you start looking at what they have... what they spend their money on... and before you know it you realize the discount you just gave up is being spent on special.

Happnes over and over. It's not cynicism. It's experience.

You "could" be the one. You "could" be the one to spot the one who can manage the free and do everything they can to protect it and cherish it. You could have the one that will do everything in their power to get you back to square whether you ask for it or not. You "could" have the one who will forego all things special and make sure that any extra goes to you. You "could" have the one who keeps their kid out of child care every possible minute so that you can make as much profit as possible with the new deal.

That "one" would be pretty hard to spot with only a year of experience with them.

I hope I'm wrong. I really do.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:01 AM
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You know what's sad? When I read the original post I thought it was such a great thing to do - and I was also pretty sure Nannyde would say just about the exact same sort of thing she did, to put a damper on a good deed. OP you will be blessed as well, I'm sure!
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:11 AM
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I think that is a very kind thing to do. I have done the same thing for a family who fell on hard times. As soon as they got back on their feet they paid the full rate.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:18 AM
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Good for you- remain positive, and really in the end if it does turn out to be a more negative scenario, just remember that you did something good for someone who really did need it and that good Karma will find you one day!
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:20 AM
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I'm glad you feel so good about helping the less fortunate. Sadly, I don't see this as being something to be happy about let alone brag about.

There is no way I would ever offer a family 50% off no matter what. I might do 20% but 50%...never!

You're best bet is to put an expiration date on this deal! For example: 3 months is how long you have to get on your feet and your rate will go back to what you were paying. And, remember, the expiration date might very well be their last day of daycare.

This DCM now knows that you are only going to charge her 1/2 price so she's going to expect special or discounted for the duration of her child's stay now.

Definitely not something I would be proud of or feel good about. Not when she can blab to her friends that you are only charging "X" amount of dollars a week now and word of mouth travels so friends of friends will find out they can get cheap too.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:35 AM
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Personally I think it's great. One thing that I will say however is not to expect anything in return. Not that it matters because if you're anything like me and I did something like this just the thought that I did something for someone else is enough for me. Even if I were to be taken advantage of sometime down the road I could at least say that I did a nice thing for someone KWIM?

You can always set a time limit an once that time has passed revisit the arrangement and talk about how things are going. If she starts working a little more, for example, you can raise her weekly rate up by a few to several dollars etc. I would also make sure to tell her not to tell anyone that she's getting a break, that could be bad news for you. But all in all I thinks it's very nice that you would do this for someone in need. Maybe you can even work something out and ask her to help you out in DC?

I did this once for a young mom that went from full-time to part-time work. She was also going to school as a nurse so she wanted to find full-time work. We worked out a discount that she could afford and kept track of the rest of what she owed. Then she'd come and "volunteer" to assist, clean my house or cook etc. We did it for 2 months until she found a FT job and got her 1st paycheck. Not sure if it would work for you but it's an option.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:37 AM
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I'm on year 24, and have had only one mom of about 347 families who took the kind of advantage of me that you describe Nanny. Maybe I'm lucky? How many have taken advantage of you to make you feel so strongly about this? I'm sure people here aren't that different than there.
Well I haven't had a fraction of the number of families you have had.

With your math you have had an average of 14 different families per year. With my eighteen years, if I were to have a comparable business it would mean that I would have 260 families.

I've never counted but I'm guessing I have had around sixtyish total so about a fourth of what you have had per year.

My first year I allowed pay at the end of the week and had a couple leave without notice but after getting burned.. I learned... I get paid upfront and I don't discount. I have a great contract and I don't play. I also do not discuss money with them. I wouldn't have this convo with a parent and I don't have a client who would even take me up on it if I did offer it. 50 percent off of a slot here wouldn't even pay the cost of housing the kid.

You had 347 DIFFERENT families in 24 years? Am I reading that right?
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:43 AM
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I'm sure this mom appreciates this so much! Half fee is better than no fee, absolutely! I would probably put a time limit on it, as others have suggested, but this really shows the great relationship that you have with this family and I hope it works out for her and you.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:45 AM
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Silver,

I think what you did was indeed a kind and compassionate thing to do. I agree that half is indeed better that nothing. I have also over the years performed similar acts of kindness because of a fondness towards the family or my own personal need for charitable feelings. Almost all of the parents have shown an appreciation of what was done and remain to this day a valued client or associate. You could think of it as your way to give a financial bailout during these tough economical times. =) Reaping what you sow.

I might suggest that you consider an amendment to her contract that will make known to all parties that when/if circumstances change, the rate will be adjusted.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:54 AM
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Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
A DCM called me just now. She told me that her son's father backed out on them and is no longer helping them out. As such, she said that she was really sad but she just couldn't afford daycare anymore. She told me that she'd be trying to find a different (higher paying) job, and trying legal means to get child support, and she would try to bring him back when she could.

I made a snap decision--I asked if there was anything I could do to help, maybe give her a break on the rate until she gets back on her feet. She said that she and the dad had each been paying half and that was really all she could afford. So, I offered to charge her only half for awhile until she gets back on her feet.

She was so grateful, I think she was almost in tears. I feel so good, being able to help a single mom out when she really needs it. It will be tough for us, as we are barely squeaking by as it is, but we do what we gotta do. Clients are hard to come by around here these days, and GOOD clients like this family are even harder to come by. I love the boy and he's been here for a year now.

If I worked for someone else, I wouldn't have been able to make that decision to help someone out who needs it, to do a kindness to someone in trouble. I have done my time working for a heartless large corporation...and I hated it. I like being a small business, I like helping out when it's warranted. I like being able to make decisions for myself.

(Besides, half the fee is way better than no fee.)
I've done something similar before - not quite a 50% discount, but a lower rate for a single mom. Not only did this girl turn into one of my best families ever (she eventually remarried and had more children, all paying market rate), but she has referred several equally good families to me.

Good for you for making a decision that you are comfortable with, and for helping someone out just because you can. I do believe that what goes around, comes around, and at some point your kindness will be repaid.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:09 AM
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I didn't read all the replies but I think it's AWESOME what you did for her! What a compassionate and selfless decision.

She sounds like the type of mom who will most certainly start paying more once she's back on her feet.

You've definitely got some positive karma headed your way.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:12 AM
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I hope everything works out for you and this mom!

My worry would be that now, with the discount, she needs to find a job that really makes good money because she has to take into account that the daycare rate will be something she has never paid for for herself (for my understanding). It may work out better for her to stay at her current job and keep getting the discount for as long as possible and then use her backup plan (whatever else she was going to do before you made the discount offer) if you say something. I don't think every person does stuff like this intentionally. But a lot of it happens when you are looking out for number one and unfortunately, other people get the short end of the stick.

Anyway, I do hope that this mom is the exception out there. There are too many people that are quick to take advantage of their daycare provider and makes providers not want to take a chance on any parent. Keep us updated! Hoping for the best!
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:14 AM
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You're right, that is a benefit of owning our own business. I also don't see you as "bragging", just happy you could help someone out
Of all the families that I have discounted rates for, almost all (only1 exception) have willingly on their own started paying me more when their circumstances changed! I was surprised by this myself! I also heard many, many words of appreciation from the families that were helped.
Most good people will appreciate when someone helps them out. I know when my dh first started working in ministry he took a huge pay cut. There was someone who chose to remain anonymous that blessed us in a tremendous way financially 3 years in a row! Being the recipient of a gift like that is such a blesing and so humbling. It makes you want to "pass it on!"
That is a great thing you are able to do for her and I hope she appreciates it!
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:17 AM
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Yes, the first 20 yrs I did part time and full time care. For 7 years I did 24 hour care. So I would service as many as 23 children
per day. Some were daily some hourly. Half were full time plus 3 schoolagers per day. Sometimes that was split into 6 families. I'm allowed 10 plus 3 SA kids at any given time.

I just rechecked my books, and I was wrong, I just signed my 348th child in august. I number my " childcare children" roster.

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Well I haven't had a fraction of the number of families you have had.

With your math you have had an average of 14 different families per year. With my eighteen years, if I were to have a comparable business it would mean that I would have 260 families.

I've never counted but I'm guessing I have had around sixtyish total so about a fourth of what you have had per year.

My first year I allowed pay at the end of the week and had a couple leave without notice but after getting burned.. I learned... I get paid upfront and I don't discount. I have a great contract and I don't play. I also do not discuss money with them. I wouldn't have this convo with a parent and I don't have a client who would even take me up on it if I did offer it. 50 percent off of a slot here wouldn't even pay the cost of housing the kid.

You had 347 DIFFERENT families in 24 years? Am I reading that right?
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:21 AM
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I had a single mom who lost her job. She wanted to pull her kid for a few weeks until she got a new job. She swore she'd be back but she couldn't put money down to keep her spot-She needed it to make sure they had an apartment and food. You know what? I told her that I'd keep her daughter for free until she got a new job. I cannot explain the gratitude she displayed.

She was out of work 3 weeks and then landed a great position. She's been here ever since and paid on time every week (or early). Next week I am taking an unpaid day off for a family wedding and she told me that she WANTED to pay me because I deserved more days off.

I'm with you on the kindess-there are SOME people who are worth it.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:33 AM
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Wow! I thought I was the only one who thought NannyD was a snippy know-it-all twit! Guess I was wrong! I also have noticed that she doesn't have a kind word about doing a good deed. Just like someone said in a previous post, she does act like parents are out to screw us over and are simply out to get us. Yes, we are in this business to make money, however, this business does often have a very fine business/personal line that sometimes does need to be crossed into the personal side a time or two. I think that those of us who either live in an area where many people are in a lower income area or simply have a client or two that falls on hard times, when we find it in our heart to help them out financially by giving them a price break, we do not expect anything in return! It seems to me that NannyD can't simply be a good samaritian at all! She always wants something out of it! That's not how I was raised. I was raised to help those in need. I have watched a couple of kids for free - different reasons for each family - one time I watched a couple of families for free because I moved and couldn't charge them until I got my new license - one because a parent lost their job, and two others for different reasons. I have also given food to a couple of my families, watched a couple of kids on the weekend for free because the mother had to work and couldn't afford to pay extra for the weekend. No, these parents are not running around telling their friends that I do this for them and I am not getting clients just so they can use me. I've done this in Florida and in 2 different counties in Maryland. So, no, the parents are not telling others that I will watch their kids for free. They just appreciated that I helped them in their time of need. When they got back on their feet, they paid me the regular fee. Now, like I said, I am in daycare to make money, so I don't watch every child for free, but if something happens and one of my parents needs help, if I can, I help them - and DON'T EXPECT ANYTHING IN RETURN!

My parents and children have always loved me and the care/education that I give the children. Many of my parents have referred me to their friends/co-workers and offered to put my daycare cards out for me to help me advertise. I have always (except when living in an apartment - after a divorce, that's where the ex put me! I knew I wouldn't make the income I usually make there!) made a decent income. I have often had an assistant (I made enough money to be able to hire an assistant). I had a cleaning service for a while - I didn't like some things they did, - let the dust from the ceiling fan fall into my baby's crib and then left it there! is one example - so I got rid of them. I seem to be THE ONE to call in my area if you are considering starting your own daycare. I have suggested to some of the parents on an interview that maybe they should start a daycare themselves and have helped some of them through the process of becoming a licensed provider. I have also received many calls out of the blue from people who say that someone they talked to told them to call me because they wanted to find out how to start a daycare. I have helped my one friend pick out everything in her daycare then helped her arrange everything in the room. So, I have 20 years of owning/operating my own successful daycare including employees, while helping others become licensed daycare providers, and still am able to find it in my heart and wallet to occassionally help a parent in need. Oh, and I've been a single mother for the past 5 or so years.

Maybe that's what NannyD hasn't done. Maybe she has never been on the other side of the fence and seen how it is to be broke and need the help and kindness of others. Or maybe she was completely broke and busted her butt to get on top and will be damned if anyone is going to try to take any piece of it away from her.

As far as the original post, good for you! Like you said, it is hard to find good clients, so if this client is worth keeping and you are able to help them out for a while, in the end, you both win. If you let them go, you would have to go through the hassle of advertising - which can cost money, interviewing, then hoping the new family works out. If they don't you have to start the process all over again - what a pain! It's nice for you to offer to help your client and hopefully it won't take her too long until she can afford to pay your regular rate on her own.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:39 AM
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Ya know, I 've been reading this thread with interest due to the varying opinions and points of view but I have to say that I think it is completley unnecessary to begin calling people names. Neither Silver or Nan called each other anything. They each simply pointed out why they do what they do......even if the other didn't see it that way.

I am embarrassed that members have now resorted to name calling. I honestly thought we, as child care providers and role models for children, would follow our own rules and state our comments and concerns in a respecful manner as we expect our daycare children to do.

Calling some one a "know it all twit" is abslutely unnecessary, disrespectful and really rude. Nan's posts may come of as sharp and to the point for some, but in my personal experience they have NEVER been disrespectful or resorted to calling anyone names.
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:12 PM
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Good for you! You have the "feeling" and if you trust your gut and it comes back to bite you in the bum, well then, lesson learned! But I think it's great, especially if it's a great family already! When my kids were in care my hubby got deployed. I didn't ask for anything, but our DCP offered us a discount. I appreciated it sooo much! It was one less thing to worry about at that time. When he ended up get promoted I made sure to go back to what we were paying and added in a little more each week to make up the back pay until I was caught up to what we should've paid. She totally didn't expect full pay until he was home and back to work and definately didn't expect the back pay, but was greatful that I didn't take advantage. My son also ended up being admitted to the hospital during this time and she charged me only 1/2 pay for the days he was out instead of full! I have since paid it forward with a family I have. They hit a rough patch and we set up a new plan. They paid 75% for a few weeks.
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:13 PM
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That's great that you can do that. I'm sure she will be forever grateful to you.
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:19 PM
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I think that is great! I can only imagine the weight that you lifted off her shoulders. When I had my son, I was a single mom and paid out of pocket for daycare. I took him to a center and it was $175 a week THEN! I paid this for a while, and I know how I struggled, but made it! what a blessing it would have been to even get it cut in half for a month!
Doesnt anyone ever wish they could just skip one mortgage payment?! I know I have thought that in the past!

I really wish I would have known how many families I have cared for in the past..I may start a list to get to remembering.
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:58 PM
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I don't know - the original poster was simply trying to feel good about helping someone and NannyD had to kick her in the teeth for it. Maybe if NannyD were called out on her negativity, maybe she'd re-evaluate her posts some before posting them and upsetting people so much.
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by permanentvacation View Post
I don't know - the original poster was simply trying to feel good about helping someone and NannyD had to kick her in the teeth for it. Maybe if NannyD were called out on her negativity, maybe she'd re-evaluate her posts some before posting them and upsetting people so much.
Whoa

Did you see me tell her not to do it? I didn't comment on whether it was good or bad. I commented on how giving that steep of a discount can profoundly change your relationship with them.

It's not negative. I'm telling her that it's VERY risky. Giving free has unintended consequences... and some time they are as dramatic as the good feeling you have for doing it in the first place.

If you go into it knowing that it's purely given without any expectation of anything in return then you have a way higher liklihood of being able to sit well with it as you are giving it.

IIRC Silver can only have four day care kids. Giving away a half slot income is a huge hit. Giving away 12.5 percent of your earnings for charitable reasons is a BIG decision. Giving it away in a snap decision is super risky.

She knows her business best and she knows what's best for her business. If she can absorb this big of a hit and she wants to do it... then that's wonderful for her. I'm just saying that it can have unintended consequences and it can cause A LOT of problems in the business.
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by permanentvacation View Post
I don't know - the original poster was simply trying to feel good about helping someone and NannyD had to kick her in the teeth for it. Maybe if NannyD were called out on her negativity, maybe she'd re-evaluate her posts some before posting them and upsetting people so much.
You are right, the OP was trying to feel good about something she did. She also defended herself quite competently by saying "Watch the way you say things...it comes off harsh, cynical, and entirely unfair sometimes." which seemed to relay her feelings to Nan's post really well without the name calling aspect.

The name calling aspect is what has me riled up because we spend so much time and effort teaching the children to be polite, respectful and tolerant of other people's viewpoints and opinions...yet here we are on a pubic forum doing exactly what we teach the little people not to do.

You are entitled to your opinion of every single member on this board, but I think our ideas, thoughts, opinions and posts can all be done in the absence of calling someone a "know it all twit." That is so not necessary.

There are thousand's of opinions and viewpoints on this forum. There is a wealth of knowledge and support as well as some really good debates too. But, all of it can be accomplished without calling someone a name is all I am saying.
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:22 PM
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That is so nice of you to help her out. I know your not asking for advice but when I read your post I was sad for dcp and scared for you.

Like another person said, I would reevaluate the situation at a later date. I know you want to think the best of people but...what if she does end up getting money from the dad in a few months and it would be much easier for her to spend it on other things than say..."hey silver ya know what, I have more money now..how much more can I pay you."

I guess I just wouldnt do it for too long...in the long run your family finances are what hurts. But on the other hand you are so sweet for helping them out!
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:27 PM
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That's a huge cut in pay.

Just keep in mind that from this point on.. regardless of their circumstance... that this rate IS the rate.

To her it's not a discounted rate or a deal. It will be for a few weeks but a month or so down the line it will just be the cost of child care.

Don't expect ANYTHING for it. Don't expect gratitude or them keeping the child home when he is sick, they are on vacay, or when they have early outs.

If you expect NOTHING out of it and understand this is now the cost of child care for this kid at your house then it should go great.
I really don't see anything horrible in this post.
She's right-this is dcm's new rate. It's up to Silver and dcm how long this new rate lasts.
I don't think when we do something "nice" for someone we should expect extra gratitude. We do kind things out of kindness, not "looking" for a pat on the shoulder. It is always nice to be appreciated, but we should not expect it as "payment" for our niceness.
Of course, anyone that's been raised correctly will show their appreciation, but that is not what we look for when we do something for someone.
Silver helped b/c she saw a need and was able to help fulfill it. She was happy because she was able to help dcm and keep the dck. Win win. No other expectations on either party!
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:34 PM
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I have not read all of the post, but when i read NannyD's post, she reminds me of my father.

My father taught me to always plan for the worst and expect the best. I know that I am very much like my father and have often been told, Gosh you suck the fun out of everything or you think too much. Now I am not saying Nan you suck the life out of anything....LOL I just think that you are a realist like much like my dad. AND there's nothing wrong with that at all.

Silver, my hat goes off to you and your ability to help someone in need. I have done it too and nothing makes you feel better.

Perhaps a word of advice to you is that you might need to put a cap on how long you will honor this help you are offering this mother. This way no one feels taken advantage of. Again kudos to you!

I was a single parent once and I know how it feels to struggle. No one ever offered to help me, except one lady. She allowed me to clean my child preschool at night to compensate for the fees that I could not pay her. 12 years later, I will never forget her and I have recommend tons of families to her. I hope that you will have greatness to come from this....

Big hugs and Great Job
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:47 PM
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That's great!

I recently discounted care for a family when mom suddenly lost her job durinng maternity leave. When she brought both kids back after finding work, she handed me a gift to say thanks. She said things were hard at home and it kept her older child happy being able to see her friends as usual. I've had hard times and will never forget the generosity of some when times were hard. It is great to be in a place to pass on those gifts.
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Old 10-03-2011, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
A DCM called me just now. She told me that her son's father backed out on them and is no longer helping them out. As such, she said that she was really sad but she just couldn't afford daycare anymore. She told me that she'd be trying to find a different (higher paying) job, and trying legal means to get child support, and she would try to bring him back when she could.

I made a snap decision--I asked if there was anything I could do to help, maybe give her a break on the rate until she gets back on her feet. She said that she and the dad had each been paying half and that was really all she could afford. So, I offered to charge her only half for awhile until she gets back on her feet.

She was so grateful, I think she was almost in tears. I feel so good, being able to help a single mom out when she really needs it. It will be tough for us, as we are barely squeaking by as it is, but we do what we gotta do. Clients are hard to come by around here these days, and GOOD clients like this family are even harder to come by. I love the boy and he's been here for a year now.

If I worked for someone else, I wouldn't have been able to make that decision to help someone out who needs it, to do a kindness to someone in trouble. I have done my time working for a heartless large corporation...and I hated it. I like being a small business, I like helping out when it's warranted. I like being able to make decisions for myself.

(Besides, half the fee is way better than no fee.)
God bless you for having a kind heart! Also wanted to mention maybe the Mother can now get child care assistance. Subsidized if you accept those payments.
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Old 10-03-2011, 06:57 PM
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I think your heart is in the right place. Your like me...when you see a need your there to help. It's kindness which people lack now in days bc we've learned to be so hard. It's times that have changed us. I see many blessings coming your way bc even if this mother takes advantage and there might be that possibility... you took that chance any way and decided it doesn't really matter. You see the greater need then your self. It's called selflessness. Did I spell that or get that right. You've done something that was so wonderful and it will either be remembered or forgotten but..it will be passed on...it's just the way the universe works. Your going to be blessed for this single selfless act of kindness to another person. And I don't see it as bragging at all but as something that was beyond wonderful and you just wanted to share. I don't for one moment think you came into making that decision as expecting anything from it. You made a snappy decision like you said in your post and it was from the kindness of your heart. Good for you!!
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by nannyde View Post
That's a huge cut in pay.

Just keep in mind that from this point on.. regardless of their circumstance... that this rate IS the rate.

To her it's not a discounted rate or a deal. It will be for a few weeks but a month or so down the line it will just be the cost of child care.

Don't expect ANYTHING for it. Don't expect gratitude or them keeping the child home when he is sick, they are on vacay, or when they have early outs.

If you expect NOTHING out of it and understand this is now the cost of child care for this kid at your house then it should go great.
Good grief. Debbie Downer.



OP: Congratulations on your good deed. I know it made your heart feel good. Kindnesses will come back to you two-fold. Pay it forward, as they say!! Good job!
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:00 PM
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i understand that you've been doing this for a long time, nanny, but i really think that along with experience this has given you a heaping helping of cynicism. You rarely (if ever) seem to think that our clients are anything but out to get us, to screw us over, and to get more than their money's worth. Maybe many are, maybe most are, but that does not mean all are. Many daycare parents do keep their kids home when sick, pay on time, pay extra when needed, and take a leg up when it's offered.

Watch the way you say things...it comes off harsh, cynical, and entirely unfair sometimes.
^^^this ^^^
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Old 10-04-2011, 12:11 AM
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Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
A DCM called me just now. She told me that her son's father backed out on them and is no longer helping them out. As such, she said that she was really sad but she just couldn't afford daycare anymore. She told me that she'd be trying to find a different (higher paying) job, and trying legal means to get child support, and she would try to bring him back when she could.

I made a snap decision--I asked if there was anything I could do to help, maybe give her a break on the rate until she gets back on her feet. She said that she and the dad had each been paying half and that was really all she could afford. So, I offered to charge her only half for awhile until she gets back on her feet.

She was so grateful, I think she was almost in tears. I feel so good, being able to help a single mom out when she really needs it. It will be tough for us, as we are barely squeaking by as it is, but we do what we gotta do. Clients are hard to come by around here these days, and GOOD clients like this family are even harder to come by. I love the boy and he's been here for a year now.

If I worked for someone else, I wouldn't have been able to make that decision to help someone out who needs it, to do a kindness to someone in trouble. I have done my time working for a heartless large corporation...and I hated it. I like being a small business, I like helping out when it's warranted. I like being able to make decisions for myself.

(Besides, half the fee is way better than no fee.)
That's true, and believe me - this generosity will come back to you in another form.... It always does, and it happens unexpectedly too
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Old 10-04-2011, 05:48 AM
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Wow! I thought I was the only one who thought NannyD was a snippy know-it-all twit!
Whoa! That seems a little unnecessary! I believe that some of Nan's views would work well in my business...others do not. It's that simple. You take everyone's opinion into consideration and you do what works well for your business.

To the OP. Good for you! I helped a family out once and don't regret it. I had a DCM that went down to PT because she could no longer afford FT. Long story short the place she worked for switched hands and they no longer offered her the pay she was originally getting. Her husband was a farmer and the amount of care she needed fluctuated by season. This was an excellent family of mine. We went into a special agreement and I had a temporary contract for her that was good for 2 months. Every 2 months we would reevaluate. In the contract she only paid by the hour and it also stated that If someone came along that was willing to pay a full time spot she would need to meet a full time payment standard or I would no longer be able to provide care. This went on for almost a year until another great family came along. When she was forced to make the decision she chose to no longer bring her children here.

Anyways the point in this story was just to give you some policies to maybe keep in mind if you decide to write her up a special contract. I know how some pay is better than no pay!
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Old 10-04-2011, 06:39 AM
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This is an absolutely wonderful thing you did for this mom!!!! Remember that you are helping someone who seems to really need it at this time in her life. She was probably so worried to tell you and you lifted a huge weight off of her shoulders.

If everyone treated everyone in the world this way what a better place this would be. I think about all the times we get sick to our stomachs when we have to talk to a parent or term them. Some parents take it absolutely fine and go on with no regrets of being with us. This is probably how this mom felt. Sick to her stomach, losing sleep, headaches, and then you made it all better by being very understanding.

That is what is wonderful about owning our own businesses. We control what we can do!!!! When reading your post, I saw nothing about bragging but someone who felt good and wanted to share about one of the perks of having an in home business.

Sure, you did it on a whim, looking back possibly you should have done a "special contract", but you know what, it's not to late. If you feel a contract just for this mom needs to be drawn up I'm very sure she will understand.

There were some pretty harsh posts on this subject and that isn't what you wanted I'm sure. I think sometimes advice comes across the wrong way and we need to brush those off and keep going. Words don't come out right on the computer and this has been adressed many, many times before.

Just keep up the good work and remember all it takes is one kind act to help someone who really needs it!
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Old 10-04-2011, 11:21 AM
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My motto is your problem doesn't have to become my problem. What I mean by that is I will help someone one out as long as it doesn't put a hardship on my family. If I can afford to discount a child to help the parent, I will. However if it is going to impact my income so greatly that now I am having trouble paying my bills then I won't. I like to help people out, however I am running a business and I try not to get personally involved with other aspects of the parents life. They are not my friends, they are clients. Some people think being friendly makes you their friend and they start to tell you all their business. I try to stay away from that. Helping her out can also mean giving her referrals to agency that can help her out financially. There are a lot of ways to help someone out.

OP if it makes you happy, wonderful. Everyone needs a helping hand sometimes. No man is an island.
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Old 10-04-2011, 11:35 AM
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I'm new to this forum and I'm not too familiar with all of the members and their "ways". So maybe those of you who have been on this forum longer have had "bad" experiences with Nanny's previous postings. However, I must say that taking an objective view of what Nanny said here, I really didn't think the name-calling was merited.

Like some previous posters already stated, it was her opinion, based on her experience, which she expressed respectfully. Her tone was just matter-of-fact - stating quite bluntly, what the daycare provider might expect in the future. In a perfect world, there may not be any selfishness or exploitation among people - but this is not a perfect world - and I believe that was what Nanny was simply trying to convey.
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Old 10-04-2011, 12:06 PM
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I have had clients before that I have offered to help them out with the rate while looking for work...they were extremely grateful for it and stayed with me.. when they got back on their feet I even got a nice bonus out of it. and every year for Christmas I look forward to what I get in my Christmas card from them. I try to go above and beyond for families you KNOW are worth it.
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Old 10-04-2011, 03:17 PM
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I think it's AWESOME that you were willing and able to make this kind of a financial sacrifice for your dcm struggling to make ends meet. I have helped a few families through some difficult times and in 25 years, I've only been burnt once. It didn't stop me from trusting and having faith that people will do the right thing, but I always remain optimistically cautious. I hope that you will be abundantly blessed by your giving heart and that much good will come from this!
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Old 10-04-2011, 07:25 PM
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Maybe I am the only one, but I agree both with the OP and with Nannyde.

First I think its great that you chose to help this person out. And yes I have too been in the situation where I needed SOME income over NO income. Half of something is better that nothing.

Second I agree with Nannyde in that you have to remain open to the idea that she may never go back to paying you the full rate. She may later start using the "extra" money on herself which unless you make a very purposeful effort to keep that out of your mind could get in the way of your relationship.

Let's hope this mom is at home thanking the Lord for people like you. Really truly appreciative of what you have done. I think the kindness you are offering her is what is important- even if later on down the road you regret it. For now, thanks for helping someone out who needs it.
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Old 10-04-2011, 10:52 PM
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Whoa

Did you see me tell her not to do it? I didn't comment on whether it was good or bad. I commented on how giving that steep of a discount can profoundly change your relationship with them.

It's not negative. I'm telling her that it's VERY risky. Giving free has unintended consequences... and some time they are as dramatic as the good feeling you have for doing it in the first place.

If you go into it knowing that it's purely given without any expectation of anything in return then you have a way higher liklihood of being able to sit well with it as you are giving it.

IIRC Silver can only have four day care kids. Giving away a half slot income is a huge hit. Giving away 12.5 percent of your earnings for charitable reasons is a BIG decision. Giving it away in a snap decision is super risky.

She knows her business best and she knows what's best for her business. If she can absorb this big of a hit and she wants to do it... then that's wonderful for her. I'm just saying that it can have unintended consequences and it can cause A LOT of problems in the business.
YES! She most certainly does know her business best...so I'm wondering why you actually DID comment in your pp all of those negative ramifications that you felt this could cause and played out several scenarios ie: having a better cell phone, the manicured nails and taking advantage with bringing a child sick, etc, etc, etc and it definitely was "NOT good"! It was pessimism & cynicism to the max!

Yes, it is her own business that she can run as she sees fit and yes, Silver can run it as she chooses! I cannot speak for others, but the problem that I am appalled at and find issue with is that Silver has a heart of gold and wanted to "help" someone in need and was merely expressing gratitude for owning her own business and having the ability to call her own shots and simply decide how she wanted to help this woman out. She was NOT asking for advice on whether her decision was good, bad or indifferent. IMHO, you attacked her on a number of issues and even went so far as to question her "judgement" on who this woman really is and their character as well! You felt she didn't know her long enough to make a valid judgement????...one year is not okay? Well, I guess we all have our perimeters on how we come to these conclusions!

Time will tell if you are correct or not...but I find it disheartening when I'm reading a positive post and you take it down a negative path each and every time!

I have been in this business for a very long time and have witnessed some serious character flaws in people, so I am NOT naive or stupid and know that some of your concerns are valid...I ONLY question why you feel the need to always be so negative when it's not even warranted or asked for?

Life is so short and we are never guaranteed tomorrow... I always try to look at the bright side of things and I think that even if we are taken advantage of at times, it is always best to remain positive, optimistic and have a heart that seeks the best in every situation. God sorts it out and in the end it's a Win-Win Situation!
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  #52  
Old 10-05-2011, 04:09 AM
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I ONLY question why you feel the need to always be so negative when it's not even warranted or asked for?
!
Probably because she has been reading Silvers posts and giving her advice (like many of us) since last Aug and knows that sometimes she leads with her heart and it hurts her family financially.

It was a reminder to her to not let go of her well earned backbone (it IS possible to have a heart AND backbone, I do it every day now). It was a reminder to be very careful when putting a clients difficulties above your own family's needs. To consider putting a deadline on it so Silver will still be able to provide a decent Christmas for her family...etc.

That if she is going to do this she needs to remember HER OWN past with clients (many posts in the vent thread that was deleted). Nan cares about Silver (like many of us) and was giving her motherly advice. Even Silver knows that.

Honestly some days I think Nan could declare the sky is blue and would be admonished that it was, in fact, in the eye of the beholder.... She comes here to help....to give advice FOR FREE.... Take it or leave it.

Oh, and the cellphones, manicured nails, etc.......happened to me after giving FREE care for almost two years (2 kids) to a family who DCD was paralyzed in a construction accident (he is making a great recovery with therapy and is able to stand for short periods, now.). Once they won their lawsuit and got back on their feet they scoffed at paying me and left in the middle of a week. They did not feel they were back on their feet even though they had nicer things than my family (new cars, new house, namebrand clothing, artificial nails, gym memberships, tanning bed etc).

Nan spent hours listening to me cry about both losing the relationship with the family (I felt we would be extended family) and the financial hit my kids took by no choice of their own during that time. They broke my heart. Yes, I have given free care since then. BUT I knew to expect NOTHING from them....not even friendship. This way I don't get hurt, again. I have a few lifelong friends from this and a few that will not even walk across the street to say hello.

Will I keep doing it?? Of course... Would I do it in this case? No. The only person really getting FREE is the DCD that walked...
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Old 10-05-2011, 06:00 AM
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First off...thank you to everyone who said nice things. Thank you too, Nan and others, to for watching out for me. I was mostly taken aback by how it came out. I considered all that stuff in the moment of silence before I opened my mouth to talk. Remember, a part of this is the selfish "Oh, ****, I can't make it now, what do I do when I lose $480 more a month we can't do that I have to do something I won't get a new client anytime soon I'm screwed" and that is, admittedly, a part of the reason I chose to offer this. There is no replacement waiting in the wings. So, I was thinking of our finances, and protecting them.

Second, thank you to cat for putting things so eloquently. My backbone wasn't, and isn't, at risk here...because my backbone is part of what made me decide to offer her this help. I've been burned by more than a few clients (and believe you me, I am NOT going back there...that was a dark place that sucked rocks, although other factors were playing into it than the terrible clients) and this is one client that has stood by me for a year now (over a year actually...which is saying something since I've only been doing this since Jan 2010, through thick, thin, and awful stuff, without a sideways look. I know the difficulties she's had, and she's never paid late. Letting her go, when she's having troubles that are not her fault, when she's one awesome parent, would be silly. If she never gets back to paying the full amount (and I fully plan on keeping after her about taking her son's father to court, and suggesting some job options because I know she's been looking for awhile now. I know where the options are atm because DH is looking...he's being laid off in December).

Thirdly, Cat, you've only been reading my posts since last December

Finally, I might not even have posted this BUT I thought of all the unregistereds who whine that all we do is whinewhinewhine, that we're all about the money, we hate our dcps and are mean evil conniving b****s...and thought that posting something nice like this would be nice.
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Old 10-05-2011, 06:11 AM
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Thirdly, Cat, you've only been reading my posts since last December


Well, as "Catherder", anyway.....

There are many of us on our second, and even third, username.
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Old 10-05-2011, 07:59 AM
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Well, as "Catherder", anyway.....

There are many of us on our second, and even third, username.
oh snap! haha gotcha. Sneaky.
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  #56  
Old 10-05-2011, 11:40 AM
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I know I am new on here....but congrats to Silver being nice and able to help out someone does make our day better. After all we are not going to be gazillionaires in this field. Why not have the chance or chances to do nice things for people. Random acts of kindness.
Some people are very appreciative of the things you do even if they don't say it on regular basis. I just did parents night out a few weeks ago and I only charged $20.00 per child for the entire night. The kids were dropped off with me on a Saturday night at 6pm and picked up at 8am Sunday. I had a full house. The parent's were so happy that I am already planning the next date night for them. Because without parents we wouldn't be in business!
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Old 10-07-2011, 09:31 AM
MamaBear MamaBear is offline
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Now I know that I do not have to defend myself or my choices to you but...this is one of the places that you are very cynical I think, and have a hard time ever giving ANYONE the benefit of the doubt. This is NOT a flaky client; I had my doubts when she started (young and single) but she is a fantastic daycare parent. I would NOT have done this for anyone I didn't trust.

I understand that you've been doing this for a long time, nanny, but I really think that along with experience this has given you a heaping helping of cynicism. You rarely (if ever) seem to think that our clients are anything but out to get us, to screw us over, and to get more than their money's worth. Maybe many are, maybe MOST are, but that does not mean all are. Many daycare parents do keep their kids home when sick, pay on time, pay extra when needed, and take a leg up when it's offered.

She did not call me up asking for a concession. She apologized for short notice and offered me money for this week and next if it would help. She is NOT one of the parents you seem most familiar with. I read people well, and I trust my gut. When she finds a better job with more hours and better pay, she'll start paying me more again--I KNOW this. I TRUST this. I TRUST her, and I TRUST my impression of her and my feelings about her.

I've never been a single mom, but I sure have been in positions where I desperately wished there was someone to cut me a break, give me a hand, and help me out of a sucky situation. I'm in one of those situations right now...and I chose to pay it forward by helping someone else out.

Watch the way you say things...it comes off harsh, cynical, and entirely unfair sometimes.
Amen and amen.
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Old 10-07-2011, 11:38 AM
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I think you should feel good about what you are doing for someone that needs a break in life. It is also a wise business decision right now. Half pay is better than no pay. It helps her out and it helps keep your family afloat at the same time. It's the best win win situation you're going to get in this economy.

I do agree with Nannyde though. A few years ago I wouldn't have but lo and behold you get burned a few times and your viewpoint shifts. I have had a bad experience of a family I trusted taking advantage of me and I never would have thought they would treat me that way... but they did. Not saying it ends badly every time just that I've learned that I have to look out for my own family's needs...just like the families of the children in my care are doing. In the end everyone does what's best for themselves and their family.
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Old 10-07-2011, 05:33 PM
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But I feel like the point is not whether you agree with Nan, it's the delivery. IF something had to be said about warnings and such, it could have been done such as:

This is great that you have done something so kind for a family in need! I can tell you feel great about it and hopefully the family does too! I'm sure you weighed the cons before making your decision and decided the good deed was worth the risk. Good for you!!


I just feel like sometimes she takes a very cynical stance on things. That's all I'm saying.
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