When preparing to host an Au Pair

From an Au Pair mom.

(Anna T., a host mother and an author of articles about hosting an au pair: How to hire an au pairHow to save money on an au pair programHow to welcome your new au pair.)

 

It is important to talk about boundaries and how you see the relationship with your future au pair with your partner.

Will a wife be comfortable if a husband casually watches movies with an au pair after kids are asleep? Will a husband be comfortable if his wife gives a male au pair a hug as a greeting?

There is no one answer – every family has a different culture, different levels of comfort with physical contact with others, and different standards of what a casual conversation is and how long it should take. In my family, we don’t casually touch any stranger of opposite sex, and my husband is not a chatty type who is likely to stay up talking for hours to an au pair. My comfort boundaries have never been crossed in my husband’s relationship with our au pairs.

When preparing to host an Au Pair, it is important to discuss those boundaries, and write down the rules of the relationship with an au pair, that will make both spouses comfortable.   And if an issue arises after the au pair arrives, it is important to revisit those rules.

In summary, in order to make both host parents comfortable hosting an adult of an opposite sex in the house, there are three things to consider:

1. Be confident in the stability of the marital relationship.

2. Involve both spouses in the selection of an au pair, to ensure that the spouse of the opposite sex doesn’t find the au pair extremely attractive to the point of discomfort.

3. Discuss the boundaries of the relationship with an aupair, that will make the host mother of a female au pair, or a host father of a male au pair, comfortable.

If you are getting ready to welcome a new au pair into your home, see more advice at How to welcome your new au pair

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ellen
    Jun 22, 2011 @ 00:28:18

    Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again very soon!

    Reply

  2. Anna T
    Jun 27, 2011 @ 09:33:26

    Thank you, Ellen. I enjoy writing this guest series for this blog. Look for more posts in the series coming soon!
    Anna, a.k.a. Au Pair Mom on this blog

    Reply

  3. Sarah
    Mar 16, 2012 @ 14:09:51

    Anna, I have to agree with Ellen. I was applying for jobs related to my sociology degree and happened across the Au Pairs in America site which sparked my interest. Having no children of my own I can’t say I can really make use of the Au Pair program; however, the ability to learn new cultures in this way is facinating. You have taught me some wonderful things with your blogs, keep it up!

    Reply

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