Anyone with a great nanny will tell you that they are like part of the family. They not only bond with the kids under their care, they have a close relationship with the parents too. Well, one New York City couple is accused of trying to take that nanny-family bond to a disturbing new level.
According to the New York Post, a rich financier's wife was having trouble conceiving another child, so she offered her nanny $30,000 to donate her eggs. The nanny was so put off by the incident, she quit and the story has raised a lot of eyebrows. Some are even outraged that this woman would cross that line and ask for something so inappropriate. But I beg to differ. I don't think this woman, who is struggling with infertility, did anything wrong.
When the mom first approached the caregiver, identified as a 25-year-old, blue-eyed English woman with a bachelor's degree named Elizabeth, she said she wanted to discuss a "delicate matter." The nanny assumed it had something to do with the family's 14-year-old son, but her employee went on to say, "You know how we've been trying for a baby, and we've been having some issues? We wondered if you would mind donating your eggs."
Elizabeth, who already earned a whopping $100,000 a year, says she politely declined. "I called on my British wit and made a joke about whether she wanted them 'scrambled or fried,'" she said. Her boss responded with "a somewhat weak" smile. "It's freaky to think they wanted me to continue working for them and raise what would have been my own child," she added. If she had donated and then stayed on with the family, she would have essentially been taking care of her own biological child, who would call someone else mom and think of her as an employee. Indeed, that would have been bizarre.
There is no disputing that it is an odd situation, but I get why these parents asked her to donate her eggs. I would even go as far as to say this mom did the right thing, the responsible thing. Most people don’t know their donors. Typically, they have to rely on a questionnaire/medical history that may not even be truthful. In this case, they know Elizabeth's background. They know what kind of person she is, her ethics, her lifestyle, her health status. Those are all very important factors when you think about half your baby's genetic material.
And I doubt this was an easy thing to even ask. There is a lot of emotional pain and humiliation when it comes to fertility problems. I bet it took a great deal of courage. But these parents wanted to give their baby the best -- starting from conception. And here was a college-educated, presumably intelligent, decent woman that could make their baby dreams come true.
Going to someone they knew and trusted makes sense to me. Of course, I completely understand how it would make Elizabeth uncomfortable. It is a strange request from someone you work for, but I don't think her employees did anything wrong. And they seemed to have parted on good terms. Elizabeth still lists that family as a reference.
Do you think this mom's request was out of line?
Image via Steve A Johnson/Flickr