(Ok, G4! I got it! :)) I spoke to the reference yesterday. I told her. I said that I had only had the sitter for a month. That a big problem was that I was too involved in the sitter's personal life.. it was too much for me. I didn't establish appropriate boundaries from the start.
I said that she made me uncomfortable. That there was nothing concrete, as she had been a perfectly fine sitter... always on time, warm, loving... but that I always felt these red flags. That she made me uncomfortable. (I said that already, right?) I said maybe because I knew so much about her life... that those feelings made me anxious about her day to day job.. but that there was nothing concrete.
When the woman commented how the sitter seemed so talented in so many things... I said yes, but that was something else that made me uncomfortable.... (again!) it just didn't' seem believable....
I told the woman that I pretty much fired her. I told her that the combination of these uncomfortable (!! time for a new word choice?) feelings about her, plus her involving me so much in her personal life... I did not feel comfortable (not quite the same, right?) with her.
And you know what. The woman did not hear. She was enamoured of her. At least it didn't' seem as if she did. Sitter tried to phone me two times last night, but didn't leave a message & was too busy to pick up.
So I gave a totally honest reference. I said I felt she was kind, honest, warn, genuine, helpful and sincere - that she had never done anything "wrong" (except for the Max jacket incident.. but I figured that was one time so I didn't mention it...) but that she was too much for me. That she left me feeling ... well... not quite comfortable. (should I invest in a thesaurus?) And I had to find somebody else. I did not "diagnose" the sitter - saying that I felt she had judgement issues, boundary issues, was immature.. BUT I gave the mother the information to made that diagnosis herself... if she chose.
I'm not so sure she chose. But I did what I had to do.