Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Moms with maids - the dilemmas of a FTWM.

Hi guys! As promised in my previous post, I am now sharing my woes about my maid having a boyfriend.
Not too long before Chinese New Year, I was playing with the kids in the playroom (also my helper's bedroom). As she was charging her handphone on her mattress, Adam happened to press her phone and showed me this photo:
A photo of her and her Bangladeshi boyfriend. As you can see, the man was caressing her from behind and staring at her chest. He arm was also placed across the chest.
As it was Adam who chanced upon the photo and showed me, my immediate reactions were disgust and worry.
We travel, or are at least away at staycations several times a year. I'm just worried that she might bring men back to our home without our knowledge.
And no, we do not have CCTV installed because we didn't see the need to when the maid and kids are at my MIL's during the day and only come home in the evenings after we fetch them.
Since this incident, I have questioned her about it and warned her that if I ever hear our neighbours mention, or we catch her red-handed bringing strangers to our home or stealing from us, we will send them to the police for theft and trespassing and we will also send her back immediately.
My family, in-laws, Andy and I have discussed about this issue over and over ever since we found out and my friends / colleagues and I have debated about this fiercely over gatherings and lunch-time chatter.
We have come to a conclusion that we will still keep her.
Reason being she has 2 days-off a month, and she is entitled to do what she wants on her days off.
The MOM law states that foreign domestic helpers are not allowed to get pregnant otherwise they will be repatriated back to their country, but no mention has been made about them not allowed to have boyfriends.
Besides, we found this photo of her and her boyfriend in her handphone. We did not personally catch them in the act in our home.
In such a scenario, will you still keep your helper?
In Singapore, I think most working Moms will face maid problems, give and take the seriousness of the "problems".
Life-giver vs caregiver: this is the constant (almost) daily battle I face as a FTWM who has to depend on a foreigner to "mother" my children.
As much as I try to leave work on time, spend time with my kids on weekends, take leave during school holidays, I simply cannot be there for their every single moment.
Moments where they need help in simple tasks like getting dressed/ a change of diaper/ toileting needs/ feeding... the basic activities of daily living and I am not the one to provide such care for them.
It's driving me insane.
Lately, due to a shortage of manpower in my department, I have had to work on almost every Saturday till the late afternoon.
The only times I have to my family, I spend locked up in my room catching up on lost sleep.
 My kids want to go to the playground on a weekend evening but all I can muster is enough energy to instruct my son, to ask our maid to bring them down.
The last thing I need right now, is to deal with BGR problems of someone totally not related to me but whom my kids have to depend on!
Fun times.


  1. Hi Veron, followed ur link in smb and got here :)

    I had a similar experience when my helper was with us in her 2nd year (this is now her 5th yr with us). The news got to my mom from my cousin's helper whom my helper confined to. So, i wasn't completely sure. Back then, like you, i was a ftwm and relied heavily on my able helper to get my kids on time for classes and care for their daily needs. I nv confronted her directly on the matter, on the basis that, technically, it is not wrong to date and judging from her character and the way she treats my kids, i trust tt she isn't one to make silly mistakes. I'd however, shared with her on a level ground, more on how to be wary of men and to take things slow. She is afterall a younger woman, and at the age when she would desire hearts and flowers and as a fellow woman, who've gone thru the bitter-sweet path, i hav much to share. Since she does not hav family here, i hope she would confine to me instead if she faces any difficulties. In this way, i suppose it wld be a win-win for us both. My helper is still with my family. She is very impt to me and has became more a friend than domestic helper. If u ask me now, i would hope she marry a good man some day and not be my helper for too long a period of time. Not because i prefer her gone, but i hope she would find the happiness she deserves.

  2. As long as she is competent and job performance hasn't dropped because of the relationship, I would keep her. I guess she is entitled to do whatever she wants on her days off. It is good that you've spoken to her and laid down some ground rules. To me, she is innocent until proven guilty! Good luck.

    1. Mich, you are right - she's innocent until proven guilty. Thanks :) Luck is what I need lately. And a lot about getting a good helper depends on luck as well.


  3. Hi Dianaruth,

    Somehow I know where you are coming from and agree with your POV that's why we decided to keep our maid in the end as sending her back would be too drastic measures considering shes also human and did not actually commit any crime.

    Although honestly, I was shocked as it was my son who first saw that photo of her and her bf. He's only 4+, I do not wish for him to be exposed to indecent media.

    By giving her the basic trust that every person is entitled to, I can only cross my fingers and hope that she does not betray it.

    Are you still a FTWM or WFHM now? Cos I read from your blog that you are in a IT-related industry :)

    Cheers and good day,

  4. I am glad you didn't send her back. I just hope she knows her limits.

    I share your woes as FTWM. I hope your situation at work gets better soon.

    visiting from SMB. :)

    1. Hi Cherry,
      thanks for dropping by :) Would love to hear from fellow-FTWMs on your childcare arrangements.
      Pls share if you have the time.



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