02 Apr
I Slept with my Employer & Now my Boyfriend is Mad. WTH?

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

The boyfriend and I have been dating for three months, exclusive for two. When we first started dating, he asked if I had ever cheated in a relationship. Knowing it was a huge deal-breaker for him because of his own past hurts, I confessed that I had been party to someone else cheating (he was married, I was not) more than 5 years ago. After 5 years of dealing privately with the aftermath of that, I have been thrown back into having to deal with it again. The man and his wife are people I see on a nearly daily basis — I nanny their child, and we have family dinners one night a week. We three have moved past it (after several years of distance, we now maintain healthy relationships).

However, the boyfriend cannot make peace with it. He has very extreme reactions, and I fear he’ll never get over it. He’s now projecting those fears onto my other male friendships (including a longtime friend who is a minister, whose family I treat as my own). I feel like I will have to choose between my boyfriend (who, in all other ways, I adore and feel VERY well-matched with) and my friends and support system. What is a logical girl to do?

Signed,

Confused in Carolina

___________________________________________

Dear Confused,

Um.

Okay.

Let me get this straight, because I stopped paying attention after you told me that YOU’RE WORKING FOR THE MAN WITH WHOM YOU HAD AN AFFAIR, AND YOU EAT DINNER WITH HIM AND HIS WIFE ON THE REGULAR.

What…the…hell?

I find this to be all kinds of messed up. For you, for him, for the wife, and for the child you’re nannying. There’s no reason why you should still be in contact with these people, not to mention WORKING for them. You, he, or she can say you’ve “moved on” all you like, but I find that to be impossible. And, if you really want this relationship with your boyfriend to work, it’s inconsiderate and unfair to him as well.

That said, I also am concerned about his own emotional baggage. Everyone’s been hurt before—-as Forrest Gump once said, shit happens—-but that doesn’t give anyone the license to act erratically or, to use your words, extremely, in subsequent relationships. Your boyfriend has issues he needs to work through, and I’m not so certain you’re the best girl with whom he should be working them out, given your current, um, employment situation.

(OMG, really? I still can’t wrap my head around it.)

So that was my long answer, I suppose. In short:

1. Quit your damn job, girl. There are lots of kids that need nannies in your town. Of this, I am sure.

2. Rethink this relationship with your boyfriend, both for his sake and your own. Set him free, and all that jazz, ya know? This is one wonderful moronathan, I’m afraid, and I don’t see how it’s a good foundation for a relationship that has JUST started.

And did I mention you should quit your job?

OMG,

Kristine, TMH

52 Comments <-- Click to comment

23 Mar
No Coveting My Caregiver!

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I am a high school teacher and I happen to have an ex-student (five years out) as my Nanny. We love her. However, my Nanny’s mother now works in my school building and has become very close with a co-worker who has young children as well.

I heard from a friend who also works at the school that the mother’s friend/my co-worker is intending on asking my Nanny to work for her next year. This is really stressing me out. Not to mention, I cannot wrap my head around someone doing this to another co-worker! I don’t know if my Nanny will bite but I am positive that the co-worker’s offer will double her income because the other woman has two kids.

I will be hurt as I was a mentor to this kid for years but she is a kid. My peer, however, will be dead to me. How can I continue to work with her? How do I confront her? Do I wait until the deed is done or try to intercept and make her feel guilty?

Signed,

Step Off My Nanny!

———————————————-

Dear Step Off,

Geez! Where do you work? Is it on Wisteria Lane?

Frankly, I’m not all that surprised. Some women (and men) may graduate from high school but their maturity never moves beyond it. But instead of taking jock boyfriends or popular BFFs these women now lure away nannies and husbands and contractors.  Sometimes they even come over to your house and admire your sofa and throw pillows and then before you know it their living room is an exact replica of your living room and they are telling all the friends you share in common how YOU stole THEIR design idea so then you have to spread a rumor that they have to get their entire face waxed, on a weekly basis, because they used to be the bearded lady’s stand-in at the local circus…err, or so I’ve heard. I try to avoid those kinds of people. I certainly don’t invite them over to admire my living room.

I know some women like to avoid confrontation. I, on the other hand, believe wholeheartedly in being open and honest and trying to stop a situation before it gets out of hand. So I suggest that you bring up the matter with the soon to be “nanny stealer.” It doesn’t have to be a confrontation. Just explain to your co-worker how much your nanny means to your family, how much your child loves her, relies on her, and trusts her. Tell her that you had heard — rightly or wrongly — that she may be in the process of asking your nanny to leave and come to work for her. Tell her how much this loss would hurt you, not to mention the huge burden your family would have to endure in trying to find someone as trustworthy.

At the very least your co-worker will know she is a total douche when/if she steals her away. And you can always spread a rumor about her out of control facial hair or her three nipples.

You might also think about giving your nanny a raise, if you can afford it. Just in case your coworker does approach her. It can be just a small amount, or, perhaps, if that would be too much of a financial burden, maybe simply sit your Nanny down and tell her how much she means to you and your family. You could even ask her if there is anything (non-monetary) that could be done to make her even happier.

Good Luck,

Tonya, TMH

6 Comments <-- Click to comment

23 Jan
Can You Help Me Punk My Boss?

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I work at a hotel (in the U.S.) which has brought employees in from a poor European country for the season. The girls are working as housekeepers, earning minimum wage, which is $2 less than what any of the other housekeepers START at. They had to pay for their own flights here, work visas, and they pay all their U.S. taxes. They work 6 days a week, so they are getting overtime, but I still feel like they are totally being taken advantage of. It makes me angry.

My employer doesn’t seem to be doing anything illegal, just something that I think is ICKY. When these girls go back to their homes, they will have enough money saved that they can live off it for 6 months (going to University) without working, so that’s good for them. I just hate so much that my employer is taking advantage of them. Do you have any advice on what I can do for them, aside from adopting them through an adopt-a-teenager program where I send them $20 a month when they get home and in return they send me postcards? I know this is a weird question. It just makes me feel bad.

Signed,

My Boss is a Jerk

____________________________________________

My Boss is a Jerk,

I don’t think this is a weird question at all. I mean, please. We live in a world where Newt Gingrich is making a legitimate run at the Presidency on the platform of open-marriage. It takes a little more to rattle the Housewives.

It’s honorable that you’re feeling badly for these disadvantaged workers, but as you suggested, it’s not exactly illegal for your boss to be an asshole to your co-workers. What’s more, if you were to do something to get the bossman in trouble, the girls would suffer as well. I think that’s what they call a Catch-22, but I’ve never been good with postmodern literature.

But, if you do it right, maybe you can boost them into the media spotlight which will basically both humiliate your boss AND get the girls some paparazzi-type celebrity status. Here’s what I suggest:

1. New York had this really obnoxious guy with a mustache who worked for the local news, and he always annoyed the crap out of the bad guys until they finally caved to get him off their back. Most of the time they were probably innocent, but that’s besides the point. Get in touch with your local media and ask for the homeliest reporter with the biggest microphone to help you out.

2. Ashton Kutcher. He still does that Punk’d show for MTV, right? (He doesn’t? Well, just tell him pretty young girls are involved and I’m sure he’ll be there in a heartbeat.) Sure, the national media attention may cause the entire hotel to fail financially, costing you your job in the process, but it’ll be a great story!

3. Aren’t hotels usually haunted? Because I feel like, if you get the girls involved, you could all chip in for some fake blood and gray face paint and really pull an epic prank on Mr. Bossman. Kind of like the ghosts of Christmas past, except they’re the ghosts of…like, hotels or something. (Okay, so maybe this one isn’t super smooth, but I’m not a damn script writer so cut me some slack already.)

Or, if you want to take the issue more seriously (bo-ring!), you could do something more responsible. Perhaps you could contact local lawyers or worker’s unions to see if there’s any legal action that can be taken. Beyond that and slashing your boss’ tires, maybe you want to just have a good heart-to-heart with the girls and then submit your resignation. That’s what Jerry McGuire would do.

Good luck,

Kristine, TMH

9 Comments <-- Click to comment

10 Jan
I Love My Boyfriend, But I Cannot Spend Another Second With Him

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My boyfriend and I live together. During the day, we text, email and talk both at lunch and during the commute home. I love him and our relationship is great (it really is)…but. He starts a new job next week and this means we can now carpool, and it’s already freaking me out. I think I am going to suffocate.

If you’re never apart how do you find stuff to talk about? How do you stay interesting to the other? While I know we won’t be working with each other at the same company, we will be in contact more during the day for business reasons–we even get to have lunch together everyday! (Did I mention that I think I will suffocate?)

Am I wrong? Too independent? The whole thing makes me nervous…

Signed,

Panic Attack

________________________________

Dear Panic Attack,

Well, the first thing I want to do is hand you a paper bag (deep, slow breaths) and reassure you that it’s certainly not odd to be feeling this way. I mean, do YOU think it’s odd? Because, I’m just saying…I don’t…in case you were worried.

(Keep breathing in that paper bag.)

I’m a little confused by your hesitation since you already seem to be in near-constant contact. In fact, the texting during the commute is not only dangerous, but highly unnecessary. Unless, of course, you’re texting to let him know that you just rear-ended the car in front of you, can’t move your legs, and could he call 911, please?

That said, I think that most couples–hell, most people–desire a sufficient amount of alone time–time that doesn’t involve texting, let alone sharing the control of the radio station. The ones that are SO IN LOVE and spend every moment together and love it all so very much? They’re not weird per se, but, speaking scientifically, statistically the chances of them being insane do rise exponentially.

But I also wonder about the length of this commute. Because if you’re squabbling about   a fifteen minute drive, then, well, it’s not like you’re WEIRD or anything (why do you keep bringing that up?), but maybe you’re making a big deal out of nothing. However, if it’s something more substantial, or the commute is simply a part of your day that you use to decompress and relax, then I don’t see why your boyfriend wouldn’t understand your point of view here.

Unless of course you’re simply resistant to change and have OCD tendencies in regard to the texting. In which case, yes, you’re totally being weird.

Advice is complicated.

At the end of it all, I think you should just try it out and see how it goes. If you decide that spending the extra time together during the day will irreparably damage your relationship’s karmic flow, then just tell him to drive his own car. (He has a car, right? Dear god, don’t make him walk to work in the snow.) Or, if you choose to carpool to save money, compromise by nixing the joint lunch date. If that doesn’t work, try instituting a zero-tolerance, no-talking policy in the car.

Whatever you decide, he’ll probably think you’re crazy, but go along with it anyway because he loves you. (Weirdo.)

Godspeed,

Kristine, TMH

10 Comments <-- Click to comment

03 Jan
When is it Okay to Interfere in Something That’s None of My Business?

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My friend has always had a lot of male friends and colleagues, and she is pretty affectionate towards all of them. She found a boyfriend at the beginning of the year, who most of her friends know well (me included), and while they’re adorable together and most everyone is certain that they love each other, not all is right with the guy, and possibly not with her either. He’s an upstanding guy with a good reputation, but she and his past girlfriends say that he’s emotionally dependent. He is not a violent or abusive person, but as their mutual friend I think it hurts him to see her fill her social life. What should I do?

Signed,

I’m not Snooping, I’m Something Else Entirely

___________________________________

Dear Yeah Right,

Normally I find it somewhat endearing when friends are concerned about the relationships of their friends, but there’s something about this scenario that’s striking me as…fishy. I think it’s because I can’t tell if you’re more worried about his well-being or hers, and I think that there’s an underlying issue at work here.

Let’s play armchair psychiatrist for just a moment to see if we can crack the code.

Me: How do you feel about your friend’s affectionate behavior toward her mostly-male friend base?

You: I think it’s inappropriate and that she’s probably a whore.

See? I think we’re really getting somewhere here. Let’s keep going…

Me: When you think of her boyfriend seeing her behavior, what goes through your mind?

You: That he’s got some issues that are likely being triggered by her behavior and OH GOD I WOULD BE SO GOOD TO HIM WHY DOESN’T HE SEE ME?!

::offers Kleenex::

I think that’s enough for this week’s session.

The bottom line here is that this is not your problem to handle. It seems to me* that they both have some emotional baggage which needs to be sorted independently. For this reason, your intervention will do nothing to improve the situation, if it’s even one that needs improving to begin with.

*I am not a trained psychologist, I just play one on the Internet.

Good luck!

Kristine, TMH

10 Comments <-- Click to comment