Au Pair Confessions: All the stuff we don’t want to believe Au Pairs actually think

by cv harquail on June 11, 2013

Last month a regular reader/commenter brought to my attention the Facebook page called “AuPair Confessions” .

It’s almost as bad as looking at Pinterest.

au pair confessions

It took me a long time to get up the energy to go check it out, because I just didn’t want to see what disgruntled au pairs might ‘confess’ about — plus I already see a lot of that in the emails that come to aupairmom and that– due to my editing– never make it onto the blog page!

Some of the updates are funny stories, and some of them are completely predictable, like this one:

#291 i am happy to announce I hate my host mother. She is a bitch!!
To crown it all she told me the other day she knows I think she is a bitch!
I said, well I do!

There are the predictable (salacious, and I’ll bet not altogether true) ‘naughty host dad’ stories.  [Large sigh, and not in a good way.]

But three kinds of posts stand out for me:

The Sad and True Stories

Some of the updates are sad because you just know that there really ARE host families who are breaking the rules, taking advantage of their au pairs, and just not getting the big picture of what a good au pair-host family relationship can bring to everyone involved. Shame on them, and the agencies and counselors who help these families get away with it.

The Scams

There seem to be some scammers promoting jobs with few hours, high pay and perfect children– a triple combo that we know is impossible to offer.

The “I hope that’s OUR Au Pair”

And then there are the status updates about how wonderful the kids are, how the host parents are flawed but kind, how the au pair has learned so much, and how the year has been a wonderful adventure.

(Which makes me wonder– is that really a ‘confession’? But I digress…)

These are the things that I really hope our au pairs experience.

and it’s nice to know that some au pairs and some host families are really growing through their relationships.

Going forward, the page organizers have just announced that, due to demonstrated demand, they’ll actually be starting a blog. This could be fun.

I wonder if an au pair blog would be the mirror image of this one… with active, caring participants largely of the ‘target’ group and also including interested parties, with the occasional grump, axe-grinder or crazy to mix things up a bit.  What do you think?

Has anyone else spent time checking out AuPair Confessions? If you have, what do you think– did anything surprise you? ??



Emerald City HM June 11, 2013 at 7:10 pm

I did see this just a few weeks ago. I also saw that there were requests to make it private but the owner of the page said they wouldn’t/couldn’t for business reasons. I’m guessing someone is collecting for a book.

I’m hoping some of those confessions aren’t true, particularly the host dad ones. I also worry a little about the au pairs that are making some not so wise choices, however I do realize that I wasn’t exactly the wisest at that age either.

Gianna June 11, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Yes, I am sorry to say I have checked this blog out. I heard about it and thought it might be worth a look-see. I wish I had never read it, honestly. Parts of it were sad but most of it was silly and to my mind pure invention. I felt like I had eaten too much candy. I think I will probably read the blog if they start it – it would be too hard to resist. It was a slow work day so I moved on to Warnings About Families. This was painful especially since I saw that one of my aupair’s friends is on the site as a participant. I do not know her host family ( perhaps they are dreadful ) but I felt for them. On the other hand , I can understand why aupairs feel the need for self-protection and support that is not self-interested. It is a new world with social networking. What surprised me about Aupair Confessions ? The descriptions of irresponsible sexual activity. It is entirely possible that much of that is invented material with the intent to shock. But I hear these stories of all night parties at hotels in New York City where the girls ( I mean women ) get in for free if they are on a ” list ‘ and the organizers of the event charge the guys a fortune for drinks. I think that many young women go there just for fun but my guess is that the young men have their own agendas . Aupair Confessions was a fun read but disconcerting. I hope that no aupair of mine is writing some of those salacious stories. I also thought that some of the criticisms of the host mothers was cruel but I guess that is the way many of them see us. The aupairs seem to judge their host mothers very harshly. Well, what the heck. Perhaps it seems to them that we, on this blog, are very self-righteous , demanding and critical. I admit , I read it : guilty

MidAtlantic Host Family June 11, 2013 at 9:05 pm

All the au pairs are talking about it. Looked at it once at our AP’s suggestion and then realized I am better off reading blog posts and comments here.

DarthaStewart June 11, 2013 at 11:29 pm

Okay- I confess I went over and looked. And then looked away. It was like rubbernecking at a traffic accident, and my stomach turned pretty fast. I know that there are so many stories out there in life that are so crazy that they are probably true, but I don’t know… I just didn’t need that drama in my life right now. My Drama Llama isn’t that hungry at the moment.

PA AP Mom June 12, 2013 at 12:34 am

I read the FB page regularly. I think most of it is probably made up. I take the entire thing with a grain of salt.

Host Mom in the City June 12, 2013 at 7:24 am

Obviously much of it is made up, but is it such a shocker that young women, particularly when on an out-of-country, might sleep around? I didn’t find it to be all that shocking. And then there were a number that were “I love my host family” type posts or at least defending host families from whiners. There were a couple of whiners – I wonder why they even are APs or why they don’t just go home if its so terrible a deal? There were a couple of host families waaaay taking advantage (no surprise there), but I didn’t really see anything particularly interesting or useful.

I sort of do hope they make a blog like this one. I’d be really interested in knowing what APs really want and what really makes a good host family. Frequently I feel like I’m bending over backward for mine, but sometimes I get the sneaking suspicion that I’m bending over in the wrong direction and she doesn’t notice my efforts because its not really where she wants effort.

Valnyc June 12, 2013 at 8:30 am

I would love helpful insight into au pair needs. I am with the previous poster, not sure I’m focusing on the right items. Our au pair is winderful with the kids but she is sooo private and reserved, we are just happy to get a happy story sbout their day together once in a while.

FutureAP June 12, 2013 at 9:43 am

I read this post from time to time but I don’t find it very interesting as I think most of the most are exagerated or made up. And if not, well, those are not the kind of people I like to frequent.

For french speaking au pair there is a forum that exists since 2006 I believe and that works just like aupairmom ;) It is really helpful since there are lots of au pairs from all agencies on there and everything is private. We can ask advise from start to the end, chosing an agency, help to get the visa (lots of agencies are actually not helpful at all when it comes to that !!), how to talk to a host family about a problem, ideas of activities, what to visit in which cities, etc.

Momma Gadget June 12, 2013 at 9:51 am

That site was brought to my attention a few months ago because one of my bro-pairs friends friended me on FB.. and she had liked a comment on their page.
We all need a venue to vent… this is why I never friend coworkers/employees on FB. There are also some heart wrenching,awful situations posted … though because of the venue, make me inclined to doubt the validity of the post. APC ,aside from a few posts, seems to wallow in self pity and vicious negativity. I guess that if everything were hunky-dory with their HFs, they wouldn’t be posting in the first place. I think it is human nature to be more “vocal” about negative issues. I know when I get a bad meal or service at a restaurant I am usually composing a scathing review in my head before I even walk out, and much slower to write a positive review on an excellent experience. I also agree with other posters they seem a bit sex obsessed…but when I think (way) back
to when I was that age, I think I was too.
Will I look at the blog? Probably… I am a major procrastinator with voyeuristic tendencies…LOL.

Host Mom in the City June 12, 2013 at 12:42 pm

This is a good point. I think if some people read my posts and didn’t know me, they’d either think I was a really mean host mom or they’d wonder why on earth I’m not yet in rematch. The truth is often so much more nuanced than what you might take from a blog post. And sometimes, as wth any relationship, you just need to be like “wtf???” And then you go back to knowing that you’re talking about a person, who has many redeeming qualities too even though its hard to see them sometimes.

Momma Gadget June 12, 2013 at 1:55 pm


FormerEU.AP June 12, 2013 at 10:24 am

There’s no guarantee that these confessions are coming from actual au pairs. Some of them strike me as coming from teenagers getting a thrill from seeing their poorly structured, fabricated story, “published”.

Just goes to show that when you allow people to post anonymously, with little to no moderation, you produce this kind of garbage.

CA Host Mom June 12, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Hadn’t heard of this FB page prior to seeing this post, and I gave into the temptation to go over and skim through the posts. What complete nonsense…

Nothing really struck me as surprising, but rather a complete waste of time. I think that APs and HFs alike who really care about having good relationships and getting sound advice will seek online communities like APM. If the first 15 or so posts that I saw are any indication, the future blog or book that they are planning to produce will be completely worthless. IMO, the FB page feels like a mixture of equal parts ‘Nat’l Enquirer’ and teenage immaturity at it’s absolute worst.

Seattle Mom June 21, 2013 at 2:30 pm

I completely agree, and was going to write exactly the same thing in my comment. So, ditto!

spanishaupair June 12, 2013 at 3:10 pm

I have never heard about that page. About the kind of posts you have remarked i have to say after 4 HF, i have been aupair 3 different times dont think that im rematching all day, i have gone through all that, bad/kind of sad i think i just learned a lot with that so it was some good in some point it was the first one in England i finished being a 24 hour nanny of 6 kids and the housekeeper.
Scams is amazing how there are so many scams and how people can believe them, they usually offer you 2000 dollars or pounds, the most common are UK and USA “families”. But there is not only that, believe me ive got messages from single dads that they were just looking for someone to have sex with
And wonderfull hostfamilies my current one and specially the second one. What makes the difference for me is how they treat you outside your working hours, that you are not just an employee who vanish to her room when parents get through the door and is free.

About forums/blogs for aupairs there are some. I made with a couple of friends one for spanish speakers, to help to solve problems, get through searching families, or just blame them a little when you are having a bad day or give advice if its a really big problem. Its not just USA but also other countries specially european ones, specially thinking that none of the girls who started it has been in USA

Ruth June 12, 2013 at 4:36 pm

I used to subscribe to the FB page until I just couldn’t take the vulgarity of the post coming up in my news feed and the stupid things that are posted. There were the occasional post that made you feel good about being a good host parent yourself, but I took the time recently to unsubscribe. I just wasn’t interested in reading made-up or otherwise garbage when, after all, you’re the caregiver of our innocent children!

Host Mom in the City – you often take the words right out of my mouth with your second paragraph about bending over backwards, or needing a place to say, “really, what are they thinking???”, etc. Well-stated!

And Valnyc – right there with you as well. If an AP wants to be private and reserved, why did they sign up for this program?

Ha..thinking this blog needs to have a few features like FB (like, comment to the individual post). ;-)

CA Host Mom June 12, 2013 at 4:39 pm

Ruth … I just, for a split second, went looking for the button so that I could “like” your post. I agree with you! :)

Au pair June 12, 2013 at 7:02 pm

I never heard of the page before, and once I checked it out, I was shocked to find out that several of my friends liked the page!! I read through a couple, and had to say; oh my gosh. Your poor hf and kids!!! The one au pair that wrote she made a deal with the kids that she would let them watch tv whenever they want, if they tell mommy that they went to the park!!! How terrible, sad!!! I can’t find the right word for it. Maybe there isn’t. Unfortunately many au pairs are like that. They are not made for the job… But somehow the really bad ones always get another chance and their back gets padded for their oh sooo bad experience! It makes me so upset!! Girls, if you don’t truly LOVE kids, don’t become an au pair!!! This is not for you!! I don’t say it’s all the au pairs fault, I’m one myself. Also the agency sells the au pair job way differently than it actually is… No wonder tere are so many rematches. I have lots of au pair friends, and to be honest I wouldn’t trust any of them my kids. I hear how they speak about the kids and hp that I just feel bad about it. Of course my kids drive me nuts to sometimes, but I still love and care about them. I always will.

Tristatemom June 13, 2013 at 9:05 am

Yeah, I skimmed once and felt dirty and stressed out. I don’t need this drama. Besides, I have the actual drama at home and while my AP has never said anything negative to my face, I can feel that she really hates us. We do not hate her but count the days when she is gone.

Au pair June 14, 2013 at 11:40 am

Their website is online now.

It’s worse than the fb page.

Au pair June 14, 2013 at 11:41 am
HRHM June 15, 2013 at 9:56 am

I find it highly ironic that the webpage is populated by ads for au pair agencies! As if, after reading that page, anyone would ever want to get an AP! LOL… Any real Au Pair who posts to this type of page is just helping to ensure that there are fewer and fewer people willing to have APs in their home – food for thought.

Danielle June 14, 2013 at 12:05 pm

I think the difference here is that au pair mom is constructive and this seems like made up tabloid stories of bored teenagers. I don’t think my host family could do anything to make me post there. Do kids whine!? Duh. Are they frustrating? Yes. Can they be difficult? who isnt at times! But I genuinely cate about my two host kids and wouldn’t want to post anything like that online. Some of those people should not be au pairs.

Momma Gadget June 14, 2013 at 12:35 pm

I think their home page says it all:
“don’t hesitate to use the submission form below to contribute to each topic anonymously! Especially your confessions about unbelievable and weird experiences in your everyday life as Au Pair are as welcome as dirty secrets and messy hook-ups”

Former Au Pair June 15, 2013 at 2:16 pm

Au pairs should have a place to vent out, as some host mothers tell their experiences ( good and bads ) on this website. Also is a good thing to go annonnymous… I had experiences I would not dare telling in public or to my au pair cluster friends.

– my first host mom was lazy. Never cleaned the house, used underwear was all over her bedroom ( hers with dirty pads and HD’s with skiddy marks ). Ew!
– she would give benadryl to kids on weekends, so they would take loooong afternoon naps – they were not allowed to take naps with au pair, even when tired and being cranky.
– host parents knew I would do my laundry on Wednesdays – they would wash their clothes Tuesday night and expect them dried and folded when they arrived home the next day.
– host mothers car’s AC broke during south Florida summer. Windows were broken too and would not roll. She would ask au pair to fan babies and open doors on red lights to let air vent.

And so on… I could write a book.

That website is like a burn book, but I do wish au pairs would keep sex confessions to themselves.

Former Au Pair June 15, 2013 at 2:17 pm

* do wish.

Skny June 16, 2013 at 2:18 pm

I’ve had my share of bad experiences (2years as au pair and 3 host families). But luckily my agency at the time (Apia) was really good and one of the families got Kicked out. I am NOT worker for any agency but seems to me that au pairs from APIA have less tragedy stories to tell. Wonder if it is because their program is more expensive, or their LCCs are not commissioned (while others are), and therefore are less scared of loosing families…
I can see a lot of those stories do sound false, but many of them don’t.
Also I think that the reason many girls go crazy when in usa and are a little more reckless, or wathever, is because in many countries, girls stay home until they get married. College is like a high school… You live at home. Parents still control a lot. It is like the child of the very conservative parent going to college and experiencing freedom for the first time. Some of them just enjoy it too much.
I came to USA at 24, in this situation. Never even been drunk before. My parents still controlled a lot of what I did. For the first 4 mo I partied 4 a week (no curfew, Nd only started working at 3pm every day). After that I was done. And didnt care for it anymore. Got drunk once. Got sick, awful hangover… And never drank again. (Not even socially). Was enough for me too…

MommyMia July 9, 2013 at 12:30 am

Skny – must have been awhile ago, or a different area you were in. Our APIA LCC most definitely gets some type of perk or commission and is always trying to build our cluster (granted, it shrank quite a bit during the recession). She had the nerve to try to negotiate with the agency to take part of my “bonus” credit when I prematched with an AP who had been a friend of one of our former APs who I knew was extending after signing up for a second term. The agency did very little work, and I had to spend hours and hours re-sending different people and their accountants the emails showing what I had been promised if I came back. I didn’t find the other agency I switched to in the interim any better, but this LCC is the main reason we left APIA originally (the other was the cost – yes, they are the most expensive, which is why I negotiated to get as many credits as possible).

Skny June 16, 2013 at 2:22 pm

I like to think that my au pair experience and constant presence in au pair support group (a genuine one) helps me being a better host mom, helps me being fair. Still not perfect. My last au pair (who I loved) called me on something on her last week (that I did not imagine was a problem). We got it figured out and ended up fine, but still…

Skny June 16, 2013 at 2:27 pm

And last… A confession. I do all my au pair recruitment in the au pair group I am part of. Always pre-matches. I observe the type of posts they do, what they say, how they react to other posts, and it gives me an idea of who they really are (out of the 3000 hrs of experience that I know are fake). – don’t even get me started on the whole I am only 24, just finished college and have 3000+hs of experience. 90% fake. Sorry but unless she worked for a day care, school, or alike, this does not exist. I don’t get how agencies can’t see it.

Should be working June 17, 2013 at 2:09 pm

Wait, are you part of a Facebook group for prospective au pairs, or how do you do this prematching? I’m curious!

CA Host Mom June 17, 2013 at 10:58 pm

I am also curious about this … which group to you subscribe to to find candidates? Thanks!

Seattle Mom June 21, 2013 at 2:36 pm

Hey if you find some good ones you can’t take could you send them our way? Only half-kidding..!

SKNY June 29, 2013 at 7:38 am

Seattle Mom, when do you need to match again? LOL
Anyway, I am part of a “secret” au pair and former au pairs only group (being a former au pair I am allowed). And I keep an eye open. Which doesnt mean I don’t get myself in trouble (as in this situation I am in due to receiving a temporary au pair. although to be fair this au pair was not in this group. Was an unknown one).

Skny June 17, 2013 at 9:49 pm

As a former Au pair I am part of aFacebook groups for Au pairs and former Au pairs only. To be fair I assist them too, give opinions, etc… But I take advantage of group when matching. I usually check who says what, etc… As an example I spoke with an Au pair from GAP who said she loved dogs. (I had an old retired hospital dog). Just to go to the group and search for this aps name, read all of this aps posts since before deciding to become an ap, and read in one that the person did not like animals at all

Aupair2013 July 2, 2013 at 2:22 pm

I want to reply to: Host Mom in the City´s coment ” I sort of do hope they make a blog like this one. I’d be really interested in knowing what APs really want and what really makes a good host family. Frequently I feel like I’m bending over backward for mine, but sometimes I get the sneaking suspicion that I’m bending over in the wrong direction and she doesn’t notice my efforts because its not really where she wants effort”

I was au pair in Englad last year, terrible experience I posted here yersterday at “Au pair, start here”

I´ll give you my opinión as I´ve been Au pair and I´ve been teated as an employer or maid however you want to call it…

A good Host Family is the one that treats you just they way you´d treat your own childrens, you want someone to participate and integrate into your family and Au pair wants exactly the same thing!

Not being shy to ask help your host family about anything or go to the kitchen to get some food and feel like you were sneaking in trying to stealing them.

We do appreciate to be invited to eat dinner together or do family activities with children.

We don´t like that the host parents come up with “can you bath the kids and put them in bed tonight for me?” LAST MIN when I supose to be free in 10min and already had plans or just wanted to speak with your fam on skype. ( SOMETIMES IS OK, BUT DO NOT ASK FOR IT TWICE EVERY WEEK)

when It comes to the duties… I never mind to help at home, It´s not

my favorite thing to do but also don´t like to see dust everywhere and the house messy so to me spending 15 min in the house everyday tidying up around is not a big effort and I know the parents gonna like it (I understand they work hard to pay everything including me so I think you can already give them a break when they get home)

We´re Au pairs because we want to meet another culture and lifestyle caring childrens and being good example to them,
But we´re Young and we met a lot of people and we´d like to go out with friends and have good evening/ night as YOU used to do when you were my age.

Doesn´t mean going out every day,getting drunk and drive cause NEVER!!!

I think moderation and talking is the key to everything,
If you treat your au pair with respect and SOMETIMES have a little complicity with her/him, can be a gift such as a book or map of a city nearby that you know she/he will love to visit or can be something as easy as say: “Good job, we´re so happy with you.”

Hope to help a bit with it :)

Now I´m looking for a family in U.S.A and I hope to find the right family for me. :D

best wishes. xx

Momma Gadget July 3, 2013 at 11:07 am

Aupair2013- it sounds like over all you have a balanced and realistic expectations about what being an Au pair involves.
I would caution you on letting the negativity of you past bad experiences ( across the pond) sneak into your interviews.
I hope that the agencies, and the rules and regulatioins here help you to avoid some of the big issues you had previously.
Every family is different…ask lots of questions, and choose wisely.
I hope you find a host family that is a great match for you!
Good Luck!

IL Host Mom July 9, 2013 at 5:54 pm

I think it is also helpful to ask for the Host Family Handbook. You will have an idea of expectations up front. Our current Au Pair reviewed ours and asked really smart questions. She said a few of the other Au Pairs teased her about our long handbook, but she is very happy while these other Au Pairs are re-matching because they went into the situation blindly.

Toni(SoonToBeAnAmericanAuPairInEurope) July 8, 2013 at 8:18 am

I went on the actual website they have, and I only made it to post #380, before I felt like crying. Because that one told of a girl who went without an agency(thankfully I’m going with Au Pair international) and suffered but in the end she found a good family, but it frightened the hell out me..

But yet I still want to be an au pair, and I dont think I want to read any stories any more

Momma Gadget July 8, 2013 at 11:35 am

Keep in mind it is human nature to be more likely to post negative stories than positive ones. We are often more passionate about being wronged, and it makes for a more entertaining story.

I think a being a little frightened is a good thing- Making you more cautious when you speak with prospective families. Make sure you ask a lot of questions and focus on making a good match ( not just any match)
Good luck!

ProspectiveAupairs August 3, 2013 at 6:05 am

What I don’t understand until now is why do people (Aupairs & HFs) think it’s fine to make love before marriage?

It doesn’t need religion to think it’s a wrong thing to do.

I kind of believe half of what’s being posted in Aupairconfession site (which dumbfounded, startled, and made me rethink my plan to become Aupair) because the lifestyle that most young people do today is partying, hang out & make out with newly boy friends, not to forget drinking alcohol and coming home after 10.00 P.M.

I don’t blame them if they want to do sex without marriage but (like I said) it startled me, it doesn’t make sense to me how young adults nowadays let themselves slept with men, drink alcohol, go to the clubs. I’m STARTLED.

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