Mistaken IdentityPosted: August 25, 2013 | |
It wasn’t more than two months ago that people informed me that I didn’t look any older than 13. However, now that I consistently care for 2 grade schoolers and a baby at work, I find myself often mistaken for the children’s mother. This always leads to a feeling of awkwardness when people ask about “my children” at the store or the school secretary informs the teachers that “their mom” is here to pick them up. Do I hastily correct their assumption or do I just ignore the innocuous error?
Even more awkward is when people compliment me on the baby’s looks. You see, Baby has everything needed for adorableness: Chubby cheeks, curly hair, and a gregarious grin. Obviously, I have nothing to do with these attributes. So, when people say, “Oh, he’s so cute!”, I find myself responding with something like this:
As Baby’s nanny, I can objectively agree that he is a cute baby because I have no parental bias. However, it suddenly struck me the other day that if I was Baby’s mom, then I would have something to do with his looks. Consequently, if people think I’m Baby’s mother, my response might seem a bit vain–like I was responding with, “I know, his father and I gave him some awesome genes!” Now I’m hyper-aware of the words that leave my mouth when I have the children with me. This leads to lots of stammering and long, unasked for explanations about how I’m a nanny.
Fortunately, I’ve come up with a solution:
That should take out all the ambiguity of my social interactions. However, my arm may get tired carrying around a sign all day.
Have you ever been mistaken for another child’s parent? What do you do in those situations?