From hoarding useless things, to having a basement full of used underwear, domestic workers share the weirdest things they've seen in reach people's homes.
[Source can be found at the end of the article]
Dog walker here. one of my clients only lets her dog drink smart water.
My sister is a nanny for an NBA player and his wife. The wife called my sister at 9 PM to come to their house for an "urgent" matter. When my sister gets to their house, the wife tells her take the trash out. That's it. My sister drove an hour round trip to take out the trash.
She has so many ridiculous stories about this family, but that one is my go-to.
I nannied for a New York City power couple in 2014. Both were corporate lawyers for national banks. The husband owned more socks than I had ever seen at one time in my life. Drawers upon drawers of them, all navy blue, black, and grey.
I work as a special needs homeschool teacher for a really wealthy family who are the sweetest people. Like I seriously love them. They do have some kind of weird habits though...for instance, they only buy from Sam's club in bulk. They also have strange collections of things in their basement, and they never throw anything away. They also very nonchalantly will also just hand me hundreds of dollars. Like for anything. Babysit an extra 2 hours? Here's $60. I still can't get over their weirdness with money.
I used to be a live-in nanny for the CEO of a major German investment bank in Berlin. They were a lovely couple with a sweet baby girl, and they made me feel like part of the family from day one. They paid me well, had a separate car for me and weren't concerned by what I did in my spare time. They were very generous, lovely people.
My only gripe is that they had strange eating habits- some days they would have three enormous meals, and other days they would 'forget' to eat all day. I was often too shy to say that I was hungry.
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Once when I was a nanny, I was housesitting while the family was out of the country. The refrigerator in my apartment broke, so I packed up some perishables and brought them to the family's house to store them until the landlord could fix it. When I brought my groceries back to my place, I realized I had accidentally grabbed something that wasn't mine from the cheese drawer.
It was a gallon ziploc bag. Inside that was a smaller ziploc bag. Inside that was a bundle of wax paper. Inside that was a bundle of plastic wrap. Inside that was another bundle of plastic wrap. Inside that was a bundle of tinfoil. Seven layers deep, I found an old lump of fruitcake.
I was a nanny for an affluent family. They had a beautiful home and nice vehicles and the kids all had lots of toys and new clothes but while doing laundry one day I had to take a load of moms cloths out of the dryer and every single pair of her panties had multiple holes in them. Not like gnaw holes, but worn out most tattered panties I've ever seen holes.
Got curious and looked in her under garment drawer and this was par for the course and not just period panties. She was like a major high up in a huge company and her panties looked worse than I would imagine a homeless person wearing.
I used to work for a guy who ran his businesses into the ground and declared bankruptcy (more than once I believe). He then married rich and his wife paid for him to go to school for a decent certification. He now owns a business that's slowly failing because of how he runs it, but he and his wife still have plenty of family money, and they're well-respected in the community.
He complains nonstop about "lazy millennials" who are so "entitled" and "think they deserve free stuff from the government." It bugged me so much to see how he was so dependent on grace and luck that just doesn't exist anymore, but he thought he was so much better than anyone who wanted a leg up.
Baby sat a few times for a friend of my lawyer uncle. She was a wealthy widow who lost her husband to a helicopter accident. She would sleep with her then 10 year old son both naked in the same bed and then would walk around the house the next morning in the buff.
I understand them needing time to grieve and even occasionally sharing a bed. However the whole naked thing threw me off and I only did it a few weekends. The kid was great and loved me but was a little too touchy and cuddly. No way I was going to be around his naked.
It was bit away from my house and she would come home late so I would sleep in their guest house.
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I was a nanny for a pretty affluent family for a summer and on the whole they were really nice and great parents. Two things stood out to me: On one occasion, they had family friends visiting with their three children, so I worked a full day taking care of the five kids while the four adults just hung out in the house, ostensibly working from home but really just drinking wine and hanging out. I understand occasionally having the nanny come while you're there so you can work well from home, but nannying five children whose parents were ten feet away was a little absurd. The second thing is that they reused ziploc bags. I honest to god probably spent at least 45 minutes a day washing, drying, and organizing their ziploc bags.
I was a nanny for a rich family in Vegas. The amount of food they wasted was ridiculous. One instance I can remember is the woman buying Monster energy drinks for her nephew who only visited her house maybe twice a year. The garage was stocked with cases of the stuff for the kid. When it went bad, they threw it out and bought more. Oh there was also the time they had me run around and buy 25 dollar gift certificates for their annual company Christmas party from 25 different places... in Las Vegas... two days before Christmas. That was fun.
Job A: I'm a nanny. Family isn't overly rich or anything, really down to earth but the dad keeps complaining on the down low to me whenever he has to see his in laws, it's actually pretty funny.
Job B: I'm a PA for this woman who runs her own business, she just keeps buying things. Like she straight up bought me a new MacBook, then a surface to use as the work computer, thinks $3000 for website redesign is cheap and paid it up front.
Maybe I'm just poor though, who knows.
There was a serious lack of showering on the father's part. He worked from home 95% of the time and his office stunk.
They also had absolutely no clue that I lived a 50 minute drive away (without traffic, up to 2 hours if there was a wreck) in a town they had lived in all their lives. I lived on a base, so it's not somewhere off the beaten path. They finally realized about a month before I moved away and were shocked at how far I drove. No clue. Made my day almost 13 hours for less than minimum wage.
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I was about 16 and babysitting for an obviously well off family. Father was a lawyer, not sure what the mother did. Weird couple. Their two sons were wretched spoiled brats. They paid well so I continued to babysit for them on and off for maybe 6 months.
While I was admittedly snooping around this guy's office, I found a very intriguing treasure box about waist high on one of his several book shelves. It wasn't locked and the contents are making me laugh as I type this:
-about half ounce of pot -pink vibrator -butt plug -several different types of pills scattered around the box -couple dozen polaroids from what looked like a weird BDSM party in the 80s, including the couple doing weird fetish stuff.
Was hard to look them in the eyes after they got back that night. Both because I smoked a joint of his grass and because I couldn't get the image of this lawyer with a ball gag getting paddled by his wife out of my head.
My husband used to work for a landscaping company. There was one lady he would always come home with stories, like they paid a pilot year-round just to be on stand by in case they wanted to fly somewhere. Also, they apparently paid Google a fee every year to keep their property off of Google Maps? Also, if this is the same woman and I'm remembering correctly, she had two solid platinum reindeer for Christmas decorations.
The most bizarre was this newly rich young family in Vienna. The bed time routine for the kids (aged 3 and 7) included basically a spa treatment for both. I haven't seen that amount of products in a child's bathroom (they each had their own) in my life. The poor 7 year old girl had next to no hair on her head but I was required to slather her in the most expensive adult shampoo, conditioner, hair mask, hair oil, and some other things I didn't recognise - every night.
They only had one tiny box of toys and time spent playing was set up for 30 minutes after they brushed their teeth. Dinner was normally a bland fish fillet and a ton of salad. Not a grain of sugar anywhere in the house. Hot cocoa was made with skim milk and pure high quality cocoa - no sweetness to it whatsoever, it tasted awful.
They had time to explain EVERYTHING to me the first time I was there and I received an inch thick file with lists and procedures to follow. What they didn't mention was that the older girl was still wearing diapers at night. It made for a very awkward conversation with the child and I only hope I was sensitive enough to not cause her any future trauma.
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Former nanny for a very wealthy Silicon Valley family. The mom had recently married her new husband when I was hired. Husband was an older, wealthy lawyer and wife was in tech consulting. They were always really kind to me and the kids were good despite having insane privilege. Honestly the only weird thing was that the parents were addicted to Five Hour Energy and Coke Zero (I assume because they were total workaholics and needed the caffeine). I'd get texts at random hours just begging me to bring over Coke Zero and Five Hour Energy... I'd purchase cases at a time and it would all be gone by the end of the week. The kids didn't touch the stuff, they made sure of it, so I know it was pretty much all the mom and step dad.
Helped my mother in law who was a maid once with a very large mansion in NC. Beautiful house, amazing architecture. They traveled the world all the time. The kitchen had old old appliances from the 70's, the wife's bathroom had a broken toilet seat that was duct taped together. The wife did not re-wear her underwear. We were not to go in the basement. I peaked down there, there were clothes three foot deep in the basement where she took off her clothes and just threw them down there. Thousands of pairs of underwear. Very weird people.
My dad is an electrician and has worked in some very rich houses. He did a job in one where the couple only drank very posh fresh coffee. Fair enough, who wouldn't? But they had a cleaner who was permitted one cup of coffee each day, but not their coffee. She had her own separate coffee, but it wasn't even a decent, if cheaper, brand. It was the cheapest possible sort to buy, Asda smart price instant or something. If a person comes to my flat, whether they are a friend or the plumber, they are a guest and they will drink whatever tea or coffee I drink because I see them as equals. My dad has told me that some of the stingiest people he knows are also the wealthiest.
The wife was driving through the home improvement part of the city and saw a sale on bathtubs. So she popped in and bought three. As she was leaving, she saw another tub she liked and simply had to get that one too. She wasn't renovating a house at the time.
They refuse to throw away food. Used by and best before dates are completely ignored, to the point where I found a tin of seafood marinara which was 15 years out of date.
They have a holiday home in the south pacific and have a housekeeper clean it three times a week yet they only visit 3-4 times a year. When they're not visiting, no one lives there.
When the family goes out for dinner, the father will happily pay for the expensive meals but not the drinks. The kids (who are all teens or older) have to pay him back for the drinks and he will send reminder messages about the amount. Yet when any of the kids offer to pay for the meal, he won't accept.
The wife is a hoarder and will often take way more samples than any normal person. She always makes sure to take all the shampoo/soap etc from hotel rooms and if she passes the housekeeping trolley, will grab as many as she can from there too. Yet she never uses them. They have a whole bathroom cupboard dedicated to samples.
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During the summer while I was on vacation from college, I helped my mom at her first landscaping/greenhouse job. We went to this particular lady's house in the rich part of town, big Antebellum home, she was a realtor and all that jazz. We called her Dragon Lady because a) she looked like a wrinkly old Dragon and b) she hoarded the most ridiculous jewelry and always wore it. Even in her "pajamas".
We were taking a job to fix up (replace nice shrubs and flowers that she was just tired of) her back yard. She was a terrible excuse of a human. Mean spirited, snide comments, the works. But she had an inordinate amount of fresh young men always in and out of her house. Like the entire time we were there. Quite the variety. And if we ran into one she always introduced them as her "cousins" and we were like yeah ok sure you old crusty bag.
She would flounce around in sheer robes with little to cover anything underneath. The guys followed her around the house like they were on a leash, it was like she WANTED us to see her because she was always in her sun room being doted on by her "cousins". Putting lotion on her reptilian skin, bringing her drinks, food, etc.
Then when she was done with them a slick nice Mercedes would pick them up. We only witnessed the car a couple times but man she was weird. And gross. She's probably a fossil by now I guess. She was a relic then and that was only like 7 years ago.
I went to an older Rock Star's house to groom his dog. He was never home but his wife was always there. Always. She wanted me to drive my mobile grooming van (with tub, shampoos, dryers, A/C) to her house 30 miles away, get out of the van, go into her house (I had to wear those glove booties that go on your feet like you see in hospitals) use their shampoo (which was just human shampoo from whole foods) use their hair dryer, but only on low and never on hot, use her brushes and combs (Which were human ones and didnt work on the dog) and wash the dog in her sink. While she would randomly go through the house with her house keeper cleaning a house that was already clean and reorganizing the same 10 book shelves. She would randomly, sneak behind me and watch me groom her dog (Which was just standing there with a hairdryer for an hour trying to dry the dog). A wasnt allowed to touch the dogs toys, if he brought me one I was to ignore it. The dog was being over-washed and they were using a shampoo that was making it worst. They blamed allergies and replaces their backyard grass with fake grass. Then when I was finished I would wipe everything down and wait at the door. She would write me a check for $40 (No tip) and then try and talk to me about whatever for an hour.
The best day ever with her was she was going to the airport and said "Just ask the maid for permission to go when you're done. and then she left for the airport. The maid wandered in 10 minutes later and was like She's is gone for a month, I'm going home. Lock the door after yourself. Bye. So I took the dog to my van, actually got it groomed in about 20 minutes, returned it and then wandered around their house. Saw the original art for some of the dude's albums. Peed in his toilet and then looked through his medicine cabinet (Turns out I think he had a stroke judging by his meds, which would explain a lot). Otherwise it was kinda empty and sad. Few family photos, nothing exciting.
When I quit, the owners and the Rock Stars wife had a big blow up, she wrote them a check in advance for his next two months of grooms and told them not to cash it till X date, but she cancelled it before they could cash it.