Nannies, Mothers and Children: Do Relationships Matter?

The Answer:  More Than You Might Expect!

As increasing numbers of children are being cared for by someone other than their parents for what can be long hours of everyday, shouldn’t we begin to think with greater complexity about the relationships that develop between mothers, their children and Nannies? 

The mother-Nanny relationship is the most poignant, intimate and complex of all mother-caregiver relationships.  This relationship, as compared with the relationship mothers create with a preschool teacher or family childcare provider, is unique given that a Nanny comes into a mother’s home and cares one-on-one for the mother’s child under the guidance and direction of the mother.  Inevitably a more intense, personal and working relationship is developed between them compared with a preschool teacher or family childcare provider who cares for several children at a time, outside the home and under the direction of the philosophy and guidelines of the institution s/he works for.

The complexities and intensity of the mother-Nanny relationship has been discussed and hotly debated in chat rooms, mother’s groups, articles and books 

What is often left out of discourse, however, is how the dynamic that develops in the mother-Nanny relationship impacts both the support the mother experiences from her Nanny and the relationships that each, the mother and the nanny has with the child.

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