SINGAPORE: You might have heard about maids facing abuse, but in this case, it’s the other way around.

A Redditor posted: ‘My maid has been verbally abusing my aunt of special needs.’ Not Knowing what to do, she asked Reddit, saying, ‘What do I do?’

What do I do?
byu/throwawaytoastandtea inaskSingapore

She added, “At the slightest things, she behaves extremely aggressively and hurls insults at my aunt. For instance, sometimes my aunt asks her if she needs to take a particular medicine. I don’t get why the maid can’t give her a polite and kind answer, as it’s a reasonable question. Instead she replies like this: HOW MANY TIMES YOU WANT TO ASK ME THE SAME QUESTION I ALREADY TOLD YOU LATER (when in actual fact, she literally chose to ignore the previous questions of my aunt).”

She shared another experience where the maid behaved the same: “And then when it’s dinner time, instead of calling her to eat, she says DINNER READY ALR YOU DK HOW TO COME OUTSIDE AND EAT IS IT. Another one, just today morning. Apparently the kitchen tap wasn’t working but my aunt didn’t know about it and accidentally touched it. And the maid literally screamed: STOP TOUCHING BC OF YOU ONLY I ALWAYS GET SCOLDING.”

She added noting that the maid may have become ‘too comfortable’ in their home given she’s been with them for a decade: “I wasn’t there during this third incident but I heard it from my mother. My blood is boiling right now and these kind of aggressions and abuse towards my aunt, who you should be taking care of, not ABUSING, is really getting out of hand. I have gotten into nasty arguments with the maid before where I was this close to hitting her, but restrained myself. My parents had numerous talks with her but they only work for a few days where she pretentiously starts sweettalking, and then starts her usual s**t again. I feel like she’s just gotten too comfortable in our house and has clearly overstepped her borders, which I feel should’ve been more assertively placed from the beginning but it’s too late now. She’s been here for almost 10 years.”

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Wanting to know what she could do, she asked, “Is there something else I can do? I am very protective of my aunt and I literally cannot tolerate her being abused like this anymore. Is there a way I can involve police or MOM? Please let me know.”

Taking action herself by speaking with her parents, she noted: “I’ve also had conversations with my parents about getting another maid. But they seem to have gotten too comfortable with her. Also, apparently she has loans that she still hasn’t settled with them.”

One user commented, “Not bad the maid smart. Take loan so cannot be kicked off.”

Another said, “I don’t know how come they decided to give a loan to a maid who is rude and recalcitrant, it’s not a right.”

Yet another was skeptical about the situation saying, “Something doesn’t quite add up here. She must owe them alot of money or she must be doing a fantastic job for them to be willing to tolerate the abuse of their sibling in their own house? Your parents need to put their foot down to establish crystal clear rules to cut out the aggressiveness. If she keeps reverting to her aggressive behaviour it’s because she doesn’t feel her job is being threatened and there are no repercussions for overstepping her boundaries.”

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While many were concerned about the maid and her loan, some were more concerned about the Redditor parents’ priority, saying, “The issue is your parents, not the maid at this point.”

Another was trying to weigh the situation, looking at all perspectives: “Being a primary care take to a special needs person is extremely stressful, frustrating, and even exhaustive or depressing if no measures are taken to ensure sufficient rest is taken, or if there is a lack of a positive work environment.”

The user added, “I don’t know the situation, but the helper seems to be venting her own frustration at what she assumes to be the cause of it: your aunt…I’m not saying it is acceptable, but since you mentioned that it is unideal to change her, why not try an empathetic approach – treat her you would with a family member and find out what is causing this behaviour.”

The Redditor who posted replied: “Thanks for the reply. I appreciate it. To give more context, my aunt actually doesn’t require that much of assistance. The only tasks the maid does is serving her meals (my aunt can eat by herself) and ensuring she takes her medicine on time. That’s literally it. Other than that, she’s actually pretty independent.”

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She added, “As for household chores, we don’t cook every day. And my dad does most of the cleaning. Actually, my parents have been treating her like a family member since she’s been here. Even when she does mistakes, as far as I know, they talk to her with patience that I personally wouldn’t have. Even when she behaves like this towards my aunt, my parents still speak calmly to her. I think this is especially why my anger is skyrocketing. Because my family has been treating her so nicely, but this is what we get?”

One more user suggested practical advice, “At minimum install CCTVs so you have it recorded if it gets physical. Please, control yourself before you do anything rash and make it worse. If maid gets pissed off, she will likely take it out on the aunt. You can try contacting the disability NGOs for further advice, but I don’t know what else to tell you.”

The Redditor who posted replied, “…I guess installing CCTVs is the best I can do now for my peace of mind, even though I’m uncertain of how effective it’s gonna be. At least she’ll know she’s being watched and hopefully that deters aggressive behaviour when I’m not around.”

Maid says her employer is very impatient and rude, told her to go to the shop and said, “Go buy now. Still wait for what”