Skip Nav
35 Work-Appropriate Halloween Costumes That Keep It Classy
The Surprising Ways Teaching Is Changing in the 21st Century
Why Resilience in the Workplace Matters — and How to Cultivate It

Who's the Boss?

Who's the Boss?

Dear Sugar
My employer is taking advantage of me, and I need some serious advice. I work for a family child care facility (a daycare at someone else's home) and the lady that I work for is always bailing on me the second I step in the door. I have been there since September, and every day that I have come into work she has left for hours on end. Sometimes, I have been left with six to seven children by myself.

My boss has already caught the attention of some parents that have noticed her desertion of her business. In fact, one parent even called child services reporting that my boss is not there 80% of the time which is illegal in this business and that phone call did nothing to make her more present.

She has recently hired me for a full time schedule. I am a mother, a wife, and am currently taking classes for childhood development which start in two days. I can not afford to quit my job, and I love working with the children, but I don't know how to continue working for a woman I don't respect. Do you have any advice for me? Picking up the Slack Penny

To see DEARSUGAR's answer

Dear Picking up the Slack Penny
Yikes, this woman sounds extremely selfish and in the wrong profession. Spending your days with children is such a rewarding job so I am sorry you are feeling conflicted about your work. Taking care of seven kids on your own is no small task so I completely understand your frustration with this woman.

Have you confronted her about how overwhelmed you are? Did child services take any action against the claims that she is absent at work to ensure a positive change? You definitely have your hands full right now so getting help at work is a must.

If your boss isn't willing to pitch in, might you suggest getting another employee to help manage the heavy load? Since this woman is your boss, unfortunately, she is entitled to do whatever she wants. Ultimately, you will have to decide if your frustration is manageable or if you will be better off working at a different childcare facility.

swtfilly swtfilly 10 years
The first time I heard the words, "You allow others to treat you as they do" was from my mother. I was 13...and it has come in handy many times. Dr Phil isn't one of my favorites either but my mom sure is and always will be. I think he stole her line. :)
cubadog cubadog 10 years
Check out the laws in your state while you are looking for a new daycare to work for. You might get lucky and they may help you with school to lessen the financial burden.
Marci Marci 10 years
I agree that you should check what the laws are in your state on how many children one person can be responsible for. This is as important for the children you are caring for as it is for your sanity. And I, too, am not a Dr. Phil fan, and didn't know he uses that line, but it's completely true: People can only treat us how we allow them to treat us.
grl-in-the-world grl-in-the-world 10 years
Where I live in Canada I think you can only look after 5 kids by yourself (unless some of them are yours), cgmaetc might be correct that your boss could be violating similar rules. What about applying for a silimar job at a more reputable home daycare, or a YWCA daycare? I can relate to your frustration as I experienced something very similar while working in homecare a few years ago. It really sucks when people take advantage of you, so I hope you are able to resolve your situation before this woman makes you even more stressed out. Good luck!
cgmaetc cgmaetc 10 years
Depending upon which state you reside in, your boss my be breaking the law. Are you licensed to be the sole caregiver for these kids? Or does the law require a superior to be present at all times? How many kids do you watch while she's gone? The law may have a child/caregiver ratio she's violating. I'd do some research on the legal side first, then speak up. -the ceeg
yiddidea yiddidea 10 years
I am not a fan of Dr. Phil at all, but he said something once that has really stuck with me and proven to be true. "People treat you the way you allow them to treat you." The only way this woman will change her behavior is for you to speak up about how what she is doing is affecting you. It is hard and scary to have to do this with an employer, but if you don't speak up nothing will change. If you don't feel like you can talk to her, I would start looking for a new job. Good Luck!!
Holiday Tipping Guide 2017
Should I Buy a House?
How to Negotiate a Raise
How Much Is the Princess Diana Beanie Baby Worth?
From Our Partners
Latest Career & Finance
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds