Got this video from one of those email forwards. Sorry if the video (about 3MB in size) is blurry, its a recording by the employer done after suspicion of abuse to their child. Friends told me this was in S'pore, I'm not sure. I just feel pity towards the little girl. My heart aches seeing her being kicked, stomped on and abused like that.
I have heard of horror tales on nanny / babysitters / maid abusing the children under their care. Below are some collections of stories I heard from my ex-colleagues:
- A friend of my ex-colleague (let's call her Mrs. X) pick up her baby (don't know how many months old) from the babysitter's (BS in short) house and noticed at home that her baby has dark eyes (like panda eyes which we normally gets if not enough sleep). One day Mrs. X secretly went to the BS's house in the afternoon to check up on the BS. Mrs. X knocked for sometime at the door and after a while, the BS daughter (about 9-10 years old I heard) opened the door. Mrs. X asked the BS daughter where is BS, the daughter said her mother went out. So Mrs. X went "Hah? SHe went out? Then where is my child?" Then the BS daughter showed her and to Mrs. X shock, she saw a row of children (about 7-8 of them including her child) all neatly lined up side by side - all of them sleeping 'peacefully' - all of them has been given cough medicine. Too much that it makes them groggy and sleepy and hence, peaceful day for the BS, peaceful enough for the BS to go out and have fun while leaving the children who are supposed to be under her care in the hands of her pre-teen daughter. So, needless to say, Mrs. X stopped putting her baby under the care of this BS from then on.
- A friend of my ex-colleague (let's call her Mrs. Y) suspected something amiss with her maid. She installed a video cam when the maid is not around and later on, Mrs. Y viewed back the recording and saw to her shocking horror what the maid did. She put her own USED sanitary napkin and soaked it into the water dispenser in their kitchen. And to think her family has been drinking the water for so long. Apparently, this kinda act is like a charm (in Malay we call it jampi) - black magic thing that they believe will make their employers listen to their orders.
- MIL told me long ago when she had to place her 4th child (my hubby is the 5th and last) under the care of a babysitter (BS) just behind her shophouse (MIL had to care for the other 3 kids, the shop, the admin site of the business and the workers). She noticed one day her 4th child having scars and bruises on her back. She asked the BS why is her child having the scars and bruises and the BS said she didn't notice anything or any accidents. Then MIL asked the neighbour of the BS and was told that the BS's teenage son was abusing her child - everyday he will pinch and scratch her until she cries and hide at the corner of the house. MIL was so shocked and confronted the BS. And then the BS admitted and apologised for her son's behaviour and promised to watch out from then on but MIL decided no more BS. I'm not sure whether her 4th child (my sis in law) had any recollections of this but it still pains MIL whenever she thinks of this incident...
I know its easy for me to say being a full-time mummy who is around her child all the time (I really mean all the time.. I have to bath with the door open slightly so that my baby can still see and hear his mummy-Benjamin actually waits in front the bathroom in his walker staring and looking out for his mummy!)
Anyway, that aside, that's the main difference of being a working parent and a stay-at-home-parent.
You are not full-time with your child.
From 9am-5/6pm while you are earning your pay to support the family, you DO NOT know what goes on in their life during that time.
Don't think by paying good amount of money to the maid / babysitter / nanny means your child is getting adequate care.
Don't just be contented with phone calls to the maid / nanny / babysitters asking how is your child doing today. From time to time, drop by unannounced to check up on them.
At home when your child is back with you, pay extra attention to your child's body and behaviour. Take note on any signs of sickness, bruises, swellings, scars, scabs, anything.
Of course if your child is cared by your own parents / in law, MAYBE you can relax a little, after all, they are your family.
But still, pay attention to your child as well. Better be safe than sorry...