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Old 01-26-2012, 06:46 AM
 
Location: Podgorica, Montenegro
49 posts, read 69,007 times
Reputation: 44

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I am not thinking about hiring one, but about to become one.
I am 24, recent college graduate(marketing), I went to the US in 2010 on a exchange work and travel program and I had a great time.

Now, I want again to experience US lifestyle and spend some time in the country living and traveling, and my adviser suggested me to check our Au Pair USA program for guys. I am not that much of a 'kid person', but I have to say that I am very, very responsible and that I always give my best when I need to get the job done. This program seems like quite an adventure, especially because I am not professional, but I think that I will be able to help to the family with their kids. It is a 12 month program, with one more year possibility of extension. I am fluent in english, which is very important too.

I didnt know where to post this topic, and this section seemed like the best one at the moment.
I am researching online about male au pairs, and it says that only 5% are guys.

I didnt have that much of experience with taking care of kids, but I do consider myself as somebody who is very reliable, responsible, and who takes seriously his duties. And I have to say that this program is not about taking care of infants and toddlers, but about a little bit older kids.
And most important, I am very interested into learning things about child care, so I could be better with every day.

I also would like to participate in this program because I would like to experience and be a part of american middle class family, take some college classes, and travel around USA.

So what do you think? Would I be doing something I am not ready for or I could be good in this and successfully complete the program and make everybody happy?
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:49 AM
 
Location: Geneva, IL
12,976 posts, read 11,796,877 times
Reputation: 14677
I have friends who had a male au pair for their younger teenage boys, it seemed to work out very well for everyone. If it's something you are interested in, then go for it. Good luck.
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:00 AM
 
11,230 posts, read 9,235,817 times
Reputation: 14654
This is one little anecdote, by no means universal. I have a very close relative who is a lawyer. A few years ago, he took a pro bono case of a male au pair. The au pair was accused of molesting the little girl in his charge. According to my relative, he was indicted as if by lynch squad by a jury based on fear of pedophiles sans evidence. Justice is indeed blind sometimes. I never did hear the final outcome though.

I think men and women are equally capable as child care providers. I think if you have care in your heart and the willingness to learn then you could be an awesome au pair. And I think you are at some risk of sexist nonsense unfortunately.

Good luck to you!
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:14 AM
 
Location: Podgorica, Montenegro
49 posts, read 69,007 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by somebodynew View Post
This is one little anecdote, by no means universal. I have a very close relative who is a lawyer. A few years ago, he took a pro bono case of a male au pair. The au pair was accused of molesting the little girl in his charge. According to my relative, he was indicted as if by lynch squad by a jury based on fear of pedophiles sans evidence. Justice is indeed blind sometimes. I never did hear the final outcome though.

I think men and women are equally capable as child care providers. I think if you have care in your heart and the willingness to learn then you could be an awesome au pair. And I think you are at some risk of sexist nonsense unfortunately.

Good luck to you!
Thanks for your post!

I did, indeed, find out, during my online research, that guys could be seen as potential sexual harrassers and that they could be more aggressive than girls. I believe that some guys are like that, but unfortunately because of that people tend to generalize and create wrong opinions about this.
Thanks for your support, I am still thinking about this and trying to figure out is this the right program for me. It is really challenging, but I think that I can learn a lot about child care, and about myself too while I participate on this program.

Last edited by Pedja; 01-26-2012 at 07:35 AM..
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:25 AM
 
11,230 posts, read 9,235,817 times
Reputation: 14654
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedja View Post
Thanks for your post!

I did, indeed, found out, during my online research, that guys could be seen as potential sexual harrassers and that they could be more aggressive than girls. I believe that some guys are like that, but unfortunately because of that people tend to generalize and create wrong opinions about this.
Yes these incorrect opinions constitute an unjust risk to you. Just a thought to keep under your cap as you do your decision making.
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Old 01-26-2012, 08:16 AM
 
Location: Rogers, Arkansas
1,280 posts, read 4,037,363 times
Reputation: 1209
Regardless of your gender, you say you have no experience with kids and are not a kid person. Why would you want to spend a year with kids?
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Old 01-26-2012, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Podgorica, Montenegro
49 posts, read 69,007 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penguin_ie View Post
Regardless of your gender, you say you have no experience with kids and are not a kid person. Why would you want to spend a year with kids?
That is a very good question.
I said something about that earlier in my first post, but its no harm if i say more.
First, I want to go back to the States again, and continue exploring the country, which, by living with an american family and taking classes at some college is a great start, I think.
I want to challenge myself and I see this as a very good challenge and a chance to learn a lot about child care, and about myself of course. Like I said, I wasnt into child care before, but I think I could provide good care, and become even more responsible and 'adult'.

And of course, in the same time, make connections around me, have an awesome experience...
I think that my biggest fear is that I wont be able to deal with kids, that maybe I wont find in myself that 'X factor' for taking good care of children... idk, i am still thinking about all of this...
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Old 01-26-2012, 09:53 AM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,346,221 times
Reputation: 32238
Keep in mind that these are human beings you would be taking care of, not willing participants in your experiment to "find yourself". And it sounds like you are expecting to "see America" while you are doing this. What happens when you work for a family that doesn't travel?

I'd strongly advise you take a job looking after kids in your own area to see if you have any affinity at all for it. Too many people use being a nanny/au pair as a means to THEIR end and to get what THEY want. Travel. Out of the house. Adventure. Hang out with rich people. Meanwhile the kids are stuck with someone who may be totally unfit for the job.

(The parents who hire bad au pairs are a whole other thread.)
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:11 AM
 
Location: The Hall of Justice
25,907 posts, read 34,995,988 times
Reputation: 42372
If you're not a kid person, why not just be an exchange student?
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Old 01-26-2012, 11:07 AM
 
Location: Podgorica, Montenegro
49 posts, read 69,007 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
Keep in mind that these are human beings you would be taking care of, not willing participants in your experiment to "find yourself". And it sounds like you are expecting to "see America" while you are doing this. What happens when you work for a family that doesn't travel?

I'd strongly advise you take a job looking after kids in your own area to see if you have any affinity at all for it. Too many people use being a nanny/au pair as a means to THEIR end and to get what THEY want. Travel. Out of the house. Adventure. Hang out with rich people. Meanwhile the kids are stuck with someone who may be totally unfit for the job.

(The parents who hire bad au pairs are a whole other thread.)
Your critic is very valid. I do keep in mind that kids would be my job, that is why I still didnt apply for this program... I am still trying to figure out do I have affinities for child care... Like I said before, I am not so experienced with working with kids, but I think that I have some qualities which would help me to be successful in it...

About traveling... i was thinking more to travel when I get 2 weeks of paid vacation(it is included in the program), and then after i am done with the program. During program I would like to get better understanding of some middle class american family, its lifestyle, take some college classes, meet new friends...
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