Just when I was thinking there were no more new questions about being an au pair, this one comes across the digital transom:
I’m a soon to be first time au pair and I have a quick question for you.
What’s the best way to address my host parents?
My instinct is to call them by their first names. They’re about the same age as my brother and are young, laid back, energetic and super friendly.
Mr & Mrs So-And-So seems way too formal, Mom & Dad seem way too intrusive (and also ignoring my own parents). Host Mom & Host Dad seems far too distant and/ or silly.
Yet, I worry that calling my host parents by name might come across as rude or disrespectful— even though that is absolutely not my intention!
I’ve always just assumed our au pairs would address us with our first names.
For all the reasons this AuPair mentions, the other options just feel odd. We want to create a personal relationship, and so Mr. or Ms. or Dr. is just too formal– too much emphasis on the employer-employee dynamic. First names feel more familial.
I’m fine with au pairs referring to us as “my host mom and host dad” when they
sing my praises to discuss me with others.