An Au Pair Asks

Holiday Gift Ideas: What could an Au Pair give to an ‘Host’ Uncle? Housekeeper?

by cv harquail December 4, 2011
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I’m so impressed that there are still 19, 22, or 29 shopping days left (depending on the holiday you celebrate), but many of you are already getting organized! Right about when I posted the call for general gift ideas, we received this email from Au Pair MMC. Her gift-giving situation adds four challenges– She needs […]

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Lonely Au Pair Plans Early Departure – Do we approve?

by cv harquail December 3, 2011

Hi there AuPairMom, I was hoping you may be able to give me some advice. I am a 22 year old UK girl working as a AuPair in Germany. I have been here for just over 3 months. When I first arrived I found it difficult but was soon used to the job. The family […]

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Struggling to Communicate With Host Dad

by cv harquail August 5, 2011

Every host parent has his or her own approach to interacting with their au pair. Our personalities affect some of this, but even more important is who has taken which role in the host parents – au pair relationship. When adults team up to become parents, homemakers and breadwinners, they divvy up these roles so […]

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Unbearable Fighting Between Siblings: Fair cause for rematch? (Bettina)

by cv harquail June 28, 2011
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Here’s Bettina’s story about her host kids… click back to the original post to discuss whether, if, and how an au pair can make a positive difference in host family dynamics. I’m an au pair in the US for 2 weeks now, and I really like it here. When I arrived, I immediately felt comfortable […]

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Au Pair Asks: My Host Mom wants to get rid of me. … Am I alone in this feeling?

by cv harquail January 16, 2011
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Readers, here’s another one of those emails that I just don’t have a good answer for… Can any of you au pairs or host parents offer her some comfort? Hi Au Pair Mom, I am an au pair and always read this blog, to know if I am doing right, to have kind of a […]

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My Future Host Mom’s Sister is Creeping Me Out

by cv harquail November 28, 2010
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Okay, “creeping me out” is clearly an American idiom that I have supplied as a headline, but that phrase seems to capture the dynamic going on for this cautious au pair. She’s matched with a family, and getting to know them through emails, etc. before she joins the family in a few months. The family […]

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What to Wear? asks the Au Pair

by cv harquail November 2, 2010
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I know we had a conversation a while back when a host mom’s au pair was dressing link a tramp a little “inappropriately”, but I thought we could revisit that conversion from a more positive direction, thinking about what we’d recommend. We received this email from a soon-to-be au pair: I am a 20 year […]

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Au Pair Asks: What happens when you discover that you can’t provide what your Host Kid with Special Needs needs?

by cv harquail October 15, 2010

Dear AuPairMoms- What happens when the au pair is placed with a host family that has a special needs child, and it isn’t working out? Both the agency and the host family knew beforehand that the au pair did not have any previous experience with special needs, but the Au Pair chose to take the […]

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An Open Letter to Au Pairs without an Agency, Outside the USA

by cv harquail October 5, 2010
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Be sure to read the comments! There is some terrific information about how agencies work (or don’t work) in specific countries! Dear Au Pairs- I’m writing this letter to you to tell you a cold, difficult truth: As much as you hope that you did some careful screening of possible host families, and as much […]

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Exploited in Italy: What’s the best way to leave my host family?

by cv harquail October 5, 2010
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Dear Moms, I’ve found your website infinitely helpful to get a look at “the other side” of the au pair experience, and now I’m hoping that you can help me. The Situation I am an American girl who moved to Europe to be an au pair last month. My host family consists of a single […]

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