A STUNNING REVELATION: As a stay-at-home dad in NYC, I spend a lot of time interacting with Caribbean nannies. Unlike most people, they don’t give me a free pass just because I’m a dad. They constantly criticize my parenting skills, and I love them for it. In fact, they’ve pushed me to become a better parent. However, I’ve come to realize that my presence makes their job more difficult. Yesterday, Penny was running around with a stick in her hand, which was fine by me because
she wasn’t putting it in her mouth. However, one of my Caribbean mentors pointed out that Penny could fall and poke her eye. I wasn’t really worried but I followed her advice for the sake of the group. If I let Penny run around with a stick, the other kids might think it’s ok for them to run around with a stick. If Penny gets hurt, I don’t have to answer to anyone. If a nanny’s kid gets hurt, the nanny has to deal with his entitled parents, and suffer the consequences.
IN CONCLUSION: All this time, I thought the nannies had taken me under their wings as a promising young protégé; but now I realize I’m more like an invasive species – disrupting the natural balance of their environment. If I’m gonna take my girls to the playground, I have a responsibility to parent them like a nanny. I realize that not all parents in my position would see it this way, and that’s fine — I’m just a better person than you.