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We are wanting just the 4 of us at the table, not caregiver as it is family time. We offered her off from 2-9 pm to go back to city and be with friends. She was hurt saying they all had plans. We have concerns with her anyway which we spoke with her about last night. The main one is her flirtatious behavior with my husband. My mother, her charge, wad the first one to notice it and she is bothered by it. My husband who is pretty naive to this does see it. The worst part is whenever I walk into the room she abruptly goes into another room like she feels guilty. I feel disrespected in my home. My husband mentioned this to her and naturally she denied that. She said she isnt "as close" to me because I am direct. My personality is direct and. not easy-going like my husbands. Most people would appreciate a direct personality as they know where they stand. I have always been nice to her. She takes offense when I tell her to do something differently with my mother. I've told her, as has my husband, we are following the doctors orders or rehabs instructions. The list goes on. My mother is 85, I am 56, my husband 52 and the caregiver is 40. She dresses in tight yoga pants, off the shoulder sweaters and leg warmers. My husband is very good looking. I trust my husband with all of this. Oh, and last night she told me that "any young woman who came into your home would flirt with your husband because he is a very good looking man".

Ufortunately she is the best we have had-we have had liars, people stealing, one getting naked in the shower with my mother, none previously who would cook (everything was fried in gallons of olive oil), one that said, when looking at our dogs she ATE dogs.

So obviously there are a lot of issues here but what I want to know now is it rude to just want the family at the Thanksgiving table?

Sorry for the soap opera but I wanted to supply a background.

Thank you for any suggestions.

Susan

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she is being manipulative- Period.
Do not second guess yourself.
How dare she intrude upon your family holiday or act the way she is.
Is she with a company? They are supposed to wear a uniform of sorts. (I reported mine that showed up in strappy pajamas)
also if she is with a company, they pay them time and a half to work, another reason she would push you to have her there.
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Get rid of her, and report her behavior. This is all unacceptable, no matter how good care she takes of him.
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Thank you for your reply.
No, the others were from companies and were horrible. She does not get time and a half however she could have had 7-8 hours off with pay. She does 't have much to do. Basically it is doing my mother's laundry as my mother is incontinent or night. She needs transfer and assist help and simple meal preparation. She had a huge fall risk so someone needs to be there every time my mother gets up to use her walker. They need to walk beside or behind her. They assist her with her shower but she's basically able to do those things with someone standing there. There was no heavy work there is no listing there is nothing exhausting or even tiring except for the fact that you need to be near her so you can help her when she wants to get up and take a walk around the house or walk into the bathroom or go from downstairs to upstairs. We have a chair going up the stairs for that.

Strappy pajamas? What are these people thinking? The one to work for the agency's never had a uniform. One wore a white sheer top and white sheer, long pants with a thong underneath.

I see manipulation in a guilty conscious.
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We have had such difficulty finding someone who has a good work ethic and who will listen to us. That one caregiver would listen to my husband or me when we would explain this simple routine and the simple food preparation and how was be done. Not one. We just had such horrendous experiences. if this was our first go round with this I would not hesitate to terminate the person however after just over a year and many different people who as I mentioned has stolen lied refused to do things disrespected with my husband and me threaten to eat our dogs this is the best we've been able to come with up with so far.
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Well, I feel differently. I learned a really wonderful lesson, from my attorney, of all people. I was in a very difficult situation with my mom's significant other. Mom was living with me and dying. He was living in her house, and I wanted to sell it.

Bear with me. My story's almost over. I was going to evict him from the house. (He was/is an 87-year-old jerk.) When I talked to the lawyer about him and told him what I wanted to do, my attorney said, "Maggie, that's not who you are. That's who you're letting this guy turn you into. Don't do that."

It's the first thing I thought of when I read your post. Don't become a person who would insist someone spend Thanksgiving alone. Hell, I'd invite a complete STRANGER to our Thanksgiving table.

Offer her the day off with pay, beginning the night before. If she doesn't want to go to see her family with that incentive, then she really is alone. Right now, she's mom's caregiver. She deserves your family's consideration.

Replace her after Christmas. In the meantime, be the giving generous person I know you are, and do the gracious thing. I cannot IMAGINE you would ever regret it.
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I appreciate that. And in the past I have invited strangers into my home. I was loving single in California and was making the entire Thanksgiving dinner for myself. I was in my eay 20's. My family was in a different state. I saw singles and a single father so I invited them all to Thanksgiving. And I felt safer being alone with strangers in my apartment than I do having this coniving person at the table. I will however consider it.

Thank you again. It sounds like you really made an about face with your situation; I am glad it worked for you.
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I agree with Maggie except for the getting rid of her after Christmas part. Finding good help is difficult. You've invested hours of training in this person. Changes need to be made and it's not in personnel but rather in how you manage her.

First I would issue her a uniform. There are affordable scrubs in catalogs and at Walmart. Tell her that you will reimburse her up to $50 and she needs to start wearing the uniform by the end of the year. That's a clear message that things will change starting in the New Year.

Next, the training. She is taking care of your mother; therefore, it's your way or the highway. Learn to say "I need you to do it this way" and follow-up so she knows that you want to make sure she understands how you want something done.

Let her know that you are the one who will be giving her a reference should she choose to move on. That reference can either be that she was professional or that she was difficult to train. Either way you want to make some changes and it's only fair that she be informed of what changes she needs to work on. This needs to come from you and not your husband. When she does talk to your husband he needs to learn to say "Because my wife wants it done this way" or "Ask my wife for how she wants you to do it." You don't say who pays her but it should be you.

This is a power situation. She is testing the waters. Her inappropriate behavior is seeing what she can get away with. She is hired help. There's others out there and if all fails and she won't conform then it's time to part ways. I'm just thinking about how much time and energy you've already invested into getting what you want out of this person who, for all her faults, isn't a liar, thief, or pervert. I wish you lots of luck and I hope you'll tell us how it turns out.
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Well said, NYD.
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I'm also going to take a different perspective. As I read your initial post and subsequent ones, I began to wonder why you've had to so many problems with caregivers. You state you're direct; dealing with caregivers who are taking care of elderly people isn't necessarily a time for directness, but rather soft treading, sometimes cajoling, light negotiation, with the emphasis on what's best for the elder. And elders do like that kind of attention.

I'm assuming you've never been in a supervisory position at work?

I can't help getting the feeling that the caregiver may perceive your "direct" approach as overbearing, as may have others, and these dynamics underlie the relationship between you and this family.

I would also think that taking the attitude that Thanksgiving is for your family only is kind of cold and rude.

Something else I've noticed from posts here on interaction with caregivers is that the family is not skilled in handling employee relations, and treats the caregiver as a servant might have been treated in the old manor houses: Upstairs vs. downstairs.

Being an employer doesn't necessarily come naturally; I learned the hard way when I had to supervise someone at work - it's often a balance between being a friend and being firm as an employer, yet still with panache and sensitivity.

You might want to think this whole situation over, invite her to Thanksgiving, or at least prepare a meal for her. Smooth over the relationship, and lay the groundwork for better interaction to address other issues of concern, such as her dress style. From what you've written, I frankly would find your approach overbearing and rude.

As to the flirtatious behavior, she might have developed this as part of caregiving. It's not unusual to see this with medical and caregiving people who've dealt with older people - sometimes flirting can be confused with cajoling. However, there is a certain amount of flirting with older men that I've seen by medical staff and it is harmless. You could also just mention it to her, privately, but not in the direct manner that you say is your style.

You wrote that she "takes offense" when you tell her to do something differently. Why not take a collaborative approach, discuss the issue, explain your position, ask hers, and try to arrive at a conclusion, so that BOTH of you feel your opinions are respected. I can't imagine that she feels respect based on what you've written.

I think the dog comment is a reflection of how much you were disliked and/or resented by that caregiver, based on what you've written about the "interaction" with them.

Again, since there have been so many caregivers who have come and gone, I think you could benefit from analyzing your approach and treating this woman with the respect to which an employee is entitled. If she doesn't change, start documenting as an employer would.
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NYDIL sums it up nicely, with insights that I didn't see.

I want to add something else. You wrote "Most people would appreciate a direct personality as they know where they stand." That's true for some people, but it's also true that people want to be treated with respect in that process.

And do it gently - I've had employers who mastered this and were very successful in employee relationships. Blunt ones didn't get very far and were the ones who had the most trouble find employees who would stay on a long term basis. In fact, I worked for one attorney who was so direct that it bordered on rudeness. He set a record for short term professional staff - over a period of several years, no one stayed longer than 6 months with one exception. That's highly unusual for attorneys to jump ship like that.
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The agency I use for my Dad, the Caregivers are to wear light beige pants with the company color polo shirt. Since my Dad is an easy care but a major fall risk, I let the Caregivers set up their own routine. The only thing I do is get groceries for Dad. The Caregivers will take Dad to doctor appointments, to Home Depot, etc.

As for Thanksgiving, I let the agency know a week ahead of time that I needed someone to be there for the two shifts on Thanksgiving, yes she/he will be paid time and a half being they are giving up their holiday with family. And if I had planned a Thanksgiving dinner, I would have invited the Caregiver. Instead, the Caregiver wants to take my Dad to Cracker Barrel for a Thanksgiving meal, and that is great :)
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This is an interesting one. It's been a few years since I've worked outside the home. But prior to that I was a district manager in retail for over 10 years. After that 10 years as HR director for a nonprofit that ran programs for children/young adults with Autism. Then two years as HR manager for a chain of group homes for adults with disabilities. I've taught dozens and dozens of seminars on customer service, how to train the trainer, techniques for giving feedback/ corrective action etc. The biggest mistake I made early on in my career was trying to be a friend - the cool, well liked boss. It's is always better/easier to start out firm and loosen up if preformance allows vs being the "friend" and then trying to tighten the reins. In your case the horse my be out of the barn already. Also - I recognise having someone work in your home, privy to a level of intimate family dynamics puts a tiny spin on things. So my suggestion - include her at thanksgiving. This may generate a goodwill that will put her in a more receptive mood for a next day talk. Don't mention the talk at thanksgiving. Don't drink alcohol - be gracious but in control of the day. On Friday - do not put it off - make a time for just the two of you to talk uninterrupted, maybe while mom naps or hubby can watch mom. Go to a private spot. Start with "Jane, I wanted to talk with you this morning because..." Don't dump on her everything she does that bothers you - pick the one or two most important. Focus on the behavior/action. Attack the problem not the person. Be as specific as possible - this is key. Be prepared with a couple specific examples. Write things on index cards in case you forget or get flustered. She will probably interupt at this time to explain her side. Stop her if she interrupts, telling her you are going to finish what you are saying and then she'll have her turn. Go on to what standard you expect her to hold and why. The why does not have to be over detailed but more than "because I said so". Avoid vague and inflammatory language. I would not say "flirt" give a specific example "when you tell my husband his butt looks cute in those jeans it makes me uncomfortable. I need you to be focusing all your attention on mother to ensure she is safe and engaged". Give her a chance to talk now. Do not let her go on forever or make excuses. After she has finished, acknowledge her statements but bring it back to your expected standard "I'm hearing you say when mom naps you get bored and are just being friendly however I need you to be focused on moms safety and that mom is engaged. What can you do to make that happen?" If she has a few ideas, acknowledged one or two and show support. If she has nothing be prepared with one. Then restate the action plan, show support and then - this is critical - set a follow up date. It shows that subject is important enough to you to monitor and discuss later. If something inappropriate happens before the follow up date address it as soon as possible. Have the same conversation again but at the point where you are stating the desired standard follow with the consequence if her behavior does not improve. If you have been letting things go on for a while you may have an uphill battle I'm afraid. Her telling you your hubby is attractive tells me there has already been some inappropriate language going on and that she feels safe in talking that way. Also - if it were me I'd talk with hubby and ask him to steer clear while you are addressing this issue. Sorry that this has been so long and dull - it's better with an easel and flip-charts!
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Rainmom, excellent insight and recommendations. I was hoping someone with management or HR background would come along and post from the employer's perspective.
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The man I talked about in my post above always said, "Hey, I tell it like it is." He also claimed that he was a straight shooter. I am, too, but there's plenty of sugar on my spoon. As for him? His life philosophy was his license to be rude.
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I like Rainmoms textbook HR example. I spend over a decade as a union rep working with HR folks in industry. I would only add, don't make it all negative. Start the conversation with what she is doing well, and we appeciate your work, but there are some concerns etc.
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This is a live in caregiver? How much notice did you give her that your plans did not include her?

I going to have to ask, what kind of living arrangements are there in your home? Does this caregiver have her own separate apartment or suite where she can spend her off time, or would she be expected to hide herself in a bedroom on the holiday without having access to the shared living spaces, including kitchen and bathrooms?

And is she on call 24/7, or does she get set hours, because she should be able to wear whatever she likes on her off hours, although there is nothing wrong with expecting more professional attire during her duty hours.
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I would add a caution to Windyridges suggestion to start with a positive. This is what is known as a "but sandwich". For example "Jane you do a wonderful job making sure mom doesn't fall BUT your personal comments to my husband make me uncomfortable." The problem with this is two-fold in that the compliment is lessened by the following corrective action conversation and the seriousness of the corrective action is lessened by the compliment. A mixed message, if you will. The place for the complement is at the end of the conversation and best done by expressing confidence in the action plan. "Jane, I know you truly care about moms well being and I know you will do your best to correct this situation. "
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Wow, thank you everyone. I really appreciate the thought and time that went into everyones responses. A lot to think about. She has been with us 7 weeks, takes weekends off and someone else is here. Yes she is with my mother from about 10 until 9 pm but there are at least 2 hours breaks plus at least 5 hours are sotting and watching tv or knitting, perhaps once walking with my mother to the vathroom. My mom can handle herself in the bathroom. So she is not overworked. Ever. And when I or my husband are home she goes up to her room. No sep. apartment, just her room.

She does gave friends about 40 minutes away she was invited to for Thanksgiving. We need her part of the day as I do all the cooking and baking for tge holiday and need someone with my mom. We offered her paid time off from 2-9.

I will have a further talk with her-no flip charts though! Ha ha. And I will start out with honey not vinegar.

I will take everyones suggestions and use what I can.

Thank you again

Happy Thanksgiving to you all.
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Ps- she does not drive so all doctor appointments and shopping and going out to eat etc falls on me.
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The not driving may be part of the thanksgiving issue as I doubt her friends want to drive forty minutes to come get her then back to their home and then forty minutes back and forth again to drop her at your place. So she's probably looking at being alone. I know I would feel incredibly awkward sitting down to thanksgiving dinner knowing she was just upstairs sitting alone in her room. But that's just me.
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Creating a good working environment is crucial to having a happy employee. I have run my own business for a number of years, but recall the days when I was the employee. I am direct too, but you have to be fair and not talk down to people. Showing respect and professionalism is the key to me. I have no problem explaining to an employee the way I want something done and saying this is how I want it done. I know you have your way, but let's do it like this and it would be make me happy. If we need to, we can explore other options down the road. I appreciate your attention to doing it this way. Then when you catch her doing it your way, offer praise.

I have no qualms with however you decide to spend your holiday. To me, that's a personal decision and you are not obligated to include an employee. I don't think I would expect that type of invitation from an employer, but I have never worked in the healthcare field.

HOWEVER,
What concerns me the most is the the statement she made to you about your husband being so good looking that any woman in your home would flirt with him. THAT comment would do it for me. Regardless of her abilities, that comment alone demonstrates an unprofessional attitude that I could not get past. I'd have to make other arrangements. When people tell me who they are, I listen.
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Sunnygirl - "when people tell you who they are, believe them". One of my all-time favorite sayings! Ms. O, I believe?
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I totally understand your putting up with a situation that's not ideal in order to keep good care for your mother. I've been there. Had in-home help lie, abuse my mom, steal. I've had people who were dirty, who smelled, who were mentally ill themselves.... That said, I can't imagine a 40 year old being that needy. She crossed the line fishing for an invitation to your holiday. If her friends are busy, she should grab a great meal and a movie, and relish the time off. I don't see an issue with this at all. Just tell her nicely that she's "off." In my mind, a day off with pay is a good thing. she's capable of inviting herself to a friend's or family member's Thanksgiving.
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Is she actually providing the best of care for your mother? If not she is out the door Thanksgiving or not. You have given her the time off with pay. tell her you expect her to be outside the home during this time. you can even give her a voucher for a meal at a nearby restaurant.
This one needs to go, she is a danger to your marriage. Men are very easy to seduce even if they don't look for trouble, no bra and half a shirt are hard to resist by even the most secure family man. I know been there done that or should i say have it done to me. Suggestive remarks are the tip of the iceberg. "My husband would never do that" yes he would.
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I'm really finding it interesting and somewhat sad that this is occurring on a holiday for which we theoretically are giving thanks, originally to First Nation people who helped settlers.

There's a thread on one of the gardening forums I visit in which members share how they're spending Thanksgiving. Some are working at soup kitchens to help dish up meals for the homeless and needy. Before the holiday others are donating excess produce from their gardens to soup kitchens. One woman paid for a night's stay at a motel for a homeless woman.
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Most people would like. More direct person? - um no. I get a lot more done with sweetness rather than coming off as mean. But I'd give her ( the caregiver) a great big dose of directness if she was flirting with my husband for sure. Look I'm 57 and no 40 year old in yoga pants better flirt with my man!
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I'd be worried more if she admired the husband in silence and secretly; if she did have intentions, she certainly isn't going to announce it.

She's also from a different generation; maybe that's accepted behavior in her age and social group. As has been suggested repeatedly, the OP needs to have some discussions with her to try to work out these differences. That's the way professional employers handle issues - achieving good working relationships doesn't happen overnight.

Personally, I would never be a caregiver b/c I wouldn't want to deal with amateur employers.
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Susan, you are on the losing side of this situation no matter what.
-Since when does 'being more direct equal being mean?'
-Talking about professionalism in employers, since when is an employee wearing tight yoga pants and flirting your with husband professional?
-I agree with Garden Artist, that maybe the caregiver would do well to volunteer at a soup kitchen on that day if she has no where to be on her day off.
-the caregiver sees herself as 'close' to your husband and not so much with you?
Because something is 'wrong with you?' What does any contact with your husband have to do with her caregiving your Mom, let alone becoming 'close?'
-You say your Mom has noticed. You have noticed. Your husband has noticed.
Where are you finding your caregivers? Why is there so much interaction with your family if the caregiver is there to caretake your Mom?
-Just the fact that you had to ask this question sends up so many red flags! Why are you doubting yourself?
I am guessing you came here for support. I don't see that happening here yet. Maybe some have jumped to conclusions?
Do not open the door and allow wolves into your home.
Your worries cannot be solved by becoming a better employer or closer to your mothers caregiver. Have your mom fire her. Before thanksgiving.
It's a full moon, I have seen this behavior on the threads before. Maybe there is something about you that I am not seeing, but the caregivers have been less than welcoming to you and your question. Just saying, because they are good people.
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I agree with Veronica.

Wishing that it is me jumping to conclusions, reading something that is not there into the thread, wishing I am wrong.
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Have re-read the entire post, and see that I had only read this last page. I see that you did receive support, and provided feedback to the forum. Maybe I did over- react since we have a neighbor just as you describe. Her behavior was never corrected, she was very needy, she only took from us, increasing her neediness and the things she needed us to give to her, until it was causing a rift between my husband and I as she tried conning him out of another possession. She could not relax unless she got his attention-then felt free to criticize him. Of course, the whole neighborhood got an earfull from her viewpoint. She also shared gossip about other neighbors, so we ended the neighborliness. Thanks for letting me get that out, but the caregiver's behavior reminded me that even a uniform would not change the behavior of the person who acts/dresses this way, imop.
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