We got a new au pair in January from Spain, Andrea Ayuso Morillo, for our daughter. Our previous au pair had been Finnish, and Anaïs did learn pretty good language skills from her. We now wanted a Spanish girl to take care of our daughter Anaïs, to ensure her Spanish would improve. We found Andrea on a specialized site, au-pair world, and after a few calls and email exchanges she seemed like a really nice girl.
She came to the UK, and she seemed reliable and hard working. She was also imposing a bit of more authority in Anaïs, I guess a good thing too. We thought she was happy. But obviously we were wrong.
We spent last weekend in Finland, and returned on Sunday night. Andrea had disappeared. Her room was empty, all her belongings gone. And only one note to tell us that she was quitting. No notice, no discussion. No nothing.
She has now fully removed any traces. She has removed my wife as a connection from gmail. She has removed her profile from the au pair world where we first found her, and now we know that she posted an update in January looking for a new place in London. And she also posted her profile on another couple of sites. Yes, we know, Andrea. Even if you removed it, you cannot change the past. That's what the search engines cache is for.
So here is the thing, Andrea, you might be the best child caretaker in the world. You might be the best in social services. You might be friendly and good at your job. But you are not trust worthy. And trust, with a child, is the most important thing.
Andrea, nobody will trust you unless you grow up and find ways to discuss and communicate, to negotiate. You won't get far by being a coward, hiding away without daring to confront people. And yes, we are angry. Had you told us you were leaving, we would have understood, and planned for it. End of the story. All we needed was notice. You were paid for a week, and left half way through, and without notice. Besides this constituting a breach of contract, you behaved like a teenager. Shame on you, our daughter is more mature than you, being 27!
So why I am posting this? Firstly because you, Andrea, need to become accountable for your actions. You see, I just need to post this and let the search bots crawl my site, something that happens several times a day. And within a few days, this posting will be showing on the search results pages for Yahoo! and Google when people look for your name. Even a few years later, this post will still exist, and folks looking for references will find it.
Secondly, because I hope that by reading this other parents may not follow our own fate. If you are a parent reading this and Andrea is taking care of your children, take a minute or two to reflect about our story. Because it could happen to you too. One day, you wake up, and Andrea is gone, leaving you and your child in a really difficult situation.
Update (2008-03-02): It seems like Andrea's experience has improved dramatically since she left us a few weeks ago - she's gone from looking for au pair positions to aspiring to become a nanny.
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