Mother always late relieving babysitter
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DEAR HARRIETTE: The mother of the kids I babysit is consistently coming home late. She is a single mother with two children. It’s been really hard to want to continue working for her when I feel like she isn’t respectful of my time. I didn’t think much of it when she came home late the first few times, but she’s been doing it every night for a few months now. This is the only issue I’ve had with this family, but it’s a significant one. What should I do? — Come Home
DEAR COME HOME: Have you talked to her about her tardiness? That’s your first step. Sit down with her and give her an assessment of how things are going. Tell her what you like about working for her and taking care of her children. Then point out that she is usually late arriving home based on the time she told you she would return.
Tell her that it is hard for you to plan your life if you can’t rely on knowing when your hours will end. Ask her to stay in closer communication with you in general so that you know what’s happening. And ask her if you need to change your hours to reflect what they actually are. If she comes home past a time that you two set as reasonable, ask for overtime pay.
DEAR HARRIETTE: Several of my co-workers have sent me friend requests on social media. Wanting to be polite and friendly, I added them all. The other day, I called in sick to work when I wasn’t actually sick. Then I posted pictures of myself out to lunch with a friend. When I returned to work later that week, my boss confronted me and told me that she had heard I wasn’t really sick when I called in. I know that she found out by way of my co-workers. I am thinking of completely blocking everyone I know from work on social media. Would I be wrong to block them? — Blocked
DEAR BLOCKED: I want you to listen to yourself for a minute. You are angry at your co-workers for outing you about a lie you told at work that they figured out because you advertised your whereabouts on social media. The person you should really be mad at is yourself. If you are going to lie — at work or anywhere else — don’t create proof of your lie in the public. In this case, if you needed the day off, you should have asked for it without calling it a sick day. But still, you probably shouldn’t have posted about it on the very day you took off.
Further, blocking your co-workers isn’t necessarily a viable solution. It may upset them, which will not help with office rapport. Instead, be mindful of what you post. Like it or not, whatever you post on social media can directly affect your future. You no longer represent yourself only. When you have a job, you automatically reflect your company, too. Remember that.