Do you ever wonder what kind of riffraff the woman you’ve entrusted with your defenseless, innocent babies is (or isn’t), doing while your slaving away at your job? Well, the answer might surprise you. Unless you have a nannycam; in which case the answer will probably not surprise you since you wouldn’t be spying on her in the first place if you weren’t suspicious.
Consider the actions of one Lucilla Mazone. For three years, the warm, 26-year-old Mexican nanny dutifully and lovingly tended to three-year-old Kale and two-year-old Tarragon who, by all accounts, adored her.
Her employers, Jeffrey and Lynn Bergman, treated her with the respect and kindness they would a friend or tolerable family member. They shared and cherished the good times, and they endured the bad. Her happiness depended largely on the happiness of the children and the satisfaction of her employers. The Bergmans had but one steadfast rule to which they insisted she adhere: Lucilla may not speak while inside the family home unless asked a direct question. Any speaking, coughing, sneezing, or crying was to be conducted in the family’s small backyard garden – as long as she did so at least fifteen feet from the family’s well-kept, Upper East Side limestone.
And so, it was with great dismay that Mr. Bergman, during one of his nightly nannycam reviewing sessions, stumbled upon an incident which happened earlier that same day: Lucilla, while individually polishing the small white decorative stones in the family foyer, sliced her slender index finger – unleashing a bloodcurdling scream. She knew better than to mention the incident to her employers. As it turns out, she didn’t have to; because the Sansui XL-5000 nannycam, which had been secretly installed six days prior, not only recorded the incident visually, but captured the incriminating sound as well. By 10 A.M. the next day, Mazone had been relieved of her duties, frisked one last time, and told never to darken the family doorstep again. Had it not been for Bergman’s foresight and dedication to his family’s well-being, who knows how long such behavior might have continued.
“I shudder to think what other types of words or guttural, obscene Mexican sounds Sasha had been spewing that we never knew about,” said a clearly shaken Ms. Bergman. “I feel so…violated.”
While certainly one of the more frightening “nannecdotes,” as those who have suffered at the hands of shocking nannycam revelations call them, it’s the tip of the iceberg. Consider the story of Ms. Smith (not her real name).
“Our nanny, Gloria, had been with us for about two months. Almost from the very beginning, we’d begun to notice that several books had quite obviously been removed from the bookcase, read, and put back. One Saturday afternoon my husband secretly installed a nannycam in the very room that this book reading had been taking place. Sure enough, three days later, there’s nice little Gloria, caught red-handed via the nanny cam, reading.”
And then there’s Donna Carson-Beresford, the New Rochelle, N.Y. mother of three; watching, mouth agape, as her nanny of six years helps herself to Band-aids while gleefully bleeding all over the bathroom’s imported-marble floor. Or Geraldine Cosby, the single mom working tirelessly to provide for her daughter, overcome with rage upon watching her nanny steal heat.
“It’s one thing for a stranger to break into your home, rifle through your valuables, and harm your family,” said Ms. Carson-Beresford. “It’s quite another to watch somebody whom you’ve entrusted with your children; to whom you’ve given a key to your home, take advantage of your kindness. It not only makes one feel taken advantage of, but it makes you feel stupid. Plain and simple.”
“I trusted Lucilla so completely,” added Ms. Bergman. “Now I find myself wondering if I’ll ever be able to trust again. I just don’t know the answer to that question. Somewhere along the way, Lucilla went from ‘I am honored to care for you and your family,’ to ‘free ice cubes for everyone!’ It’s a real shame.”