We hired a new helper about two months ago. Initially, when we hired her, she seemed very competent and in her interview, her English skills seemed adequate. She hadn't had any experience with western families, but because she was had such a gentle disposition and appeared to learn easily, we hired her. Shortly after her start date, we realized that her English comprehension is not as good as we thought and that she has a very difficult time understanding us, as much as we've tried speaking slower and clearer or writing things down for her to read.

We have encouraged her time and time again to please talk to us if she doesn't understand something or needs help doing something she is not familiar with, but she just won't for whatever reason. Because of this, we've ended up with quite a few damaged clothing, irrepairable meals, errands gone completely wrong, etc, etc. As a result, we feel frustrated, worried, and anxious about what will happen and how she will be when our first baby arrives in six weeks.

I've expressed my concerns to her about this before many times. She says she understands why I am concerned, but has not yet made any actions to assure me that she has gotten better about asking for help or clarification. My husband and I have been very patient with her, but we feel like we're repeating ourselves so much now at this point and still nothing has changed.

We don't want to terminate her for many reasons (i.e. getting too close to to the delivery, getting overwhelmed with having to hire and train someone new and fearing that they too might be troublesome all while having our first newborn, plus she does work hard, in spite of all her mistakes, and is a very nice person overall), and we would like to keep her through to her 2-year contract, but we're just so frustrated with her lack of communication and don't know what else to do to make it work.

Any suggestions? Any one else have these problems too? How do you get your helper to communicate with you?