Why is a good Manny so hard to find?

by cv harquail on June 14, 2010

I can’t believe that I’m over forty, married, and writing a blog post about how to find a good man.

Sure, I have some experience in this department– I actually found my self a very nice man (DHD) — but unfortunately I don’t have exactly the right experience to help out those of you who are:

Looking for a kind, caring, sensitive guy, between 18 and 25, who loves kids and who won’t break my heart by tracking mud through my family room.

Yes, that’s right, I don’t know how to help you find a good manny.

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I know that some of you host parents would consider the right guy as an au pair, and that many of you actually prefer male au pairs to female au pairs (something about less drama??). But how do you actually find one of these?

Apparently, the problem of finding a good manny goes even deeper, since young men who are interested in becoming au pairs don’t know which agencies are really interested in placing them with host families.

Recently we got an email from a potential au pair candidate who wanted to know the best place to find host families who were looking for mannies. EC writes:

I am a 23 year old male who has been interested in au pairing for a while and am looking at trying to do so in the US. I have worked with children and young people in various jobs since I was 18. In particular I have extensive experience working with disabled children-around 1000 hours in that area alone. In spite of this, I have found it difficult to find agencies that are willing to take on male applicants. What are the best agencies to apply with if I want to find a lot of host parents who are seriously interested in hiring a male au pair?

And, given that some parents may be uncomfortable considering male au pair candidates, what kinds of things can I tell them in my application information that might allay any concerns?

According to informal sources, not all 12 of the US Au Pair agencies welcome male applicants. Some agencies, it seems, ‘decline’ to recruit and interview male candidates becuase they don’t think that host families in the US actually want male au pairs.

So the question is, what au pair agencies are responding to the interests of host parents who would like to consider male au pairs?

  • Are any agencies reaching out to male applicants?
  • Are any agencies helping male candidates present themselves in ways that help families get over any discomfort with the idea of a male child-care giver?

If you were EC, what au pair agency would your interview with?


See Also:
Male Au Pairs: When would you hire one? (Poll)
Au Pair Appreciation: Brazilian Manny wins “Au Pair of the Year”

Image: Bonus points to those host moms who recognize “Matt”, who rocks Friday Night Lights almost as much as Coach Taylor (squeal!).

{ 79 comments }

West Coast Mom June 15, 2010 at 1:53 am

Um … could you send me his email address?

Joking aside, when we hired our first AP last year, we looked at candidates from APIA and CC. APIA had zero male candidates, but CC had quite a few. The thing I found interesting was that, while I thought hiring a manny might be fun for our kids (two very energetic young boys), it was HD who was uncomfortable with it. Haven’t quite figured that one out, but we moved on, signed up with APIA and hired our disastrous first AP (bleh … you’ve all heard that story).

So I would say … try Cultural Care, and maybe think about concerns of host dads, equally to concerns of host moms, when you write your application. I would focus on really explaining, in a sincere and convincing way, why you are interested in APing. Kinda the same advice I’d give to any applicant, really.

Jenny June 16, 2010 at 3:41 pm

One of my favorite friends of my current female AP is a male from Germany. He is with Cultural Care. When I see the way the 3 host boys adore him, it is obvious that he is a fabulous AP. From what I’ve heard from the APs (for what’s that worth, but they do have a friend doing it), Cultural Care is the best agency for male APs.

Riswan January 7, 2012 at 5:25 am

I’m a 23 years old experienced manny from India, trustworthy, reliable, hard-working looking for a wonderful family if you are interested please mail me at riswaniofd@gmail.com, I will forward you my professional manny CV for your kind consideration.

Thank you

kind regards
Riswan

Anna June 15, 2010 at 6:47 am

From personal experience, I know AuPairUSA (Interexchange) and AuPairCare both have male au pair candidates. AuPairCare doesn’t recruit male candidates in every country, though ( I know for sure their partners in Ukraine for example don’t take them)

Amelie ex-aupair June 15, 2010 at 9:03 am

Anna, I also heard that Interexchange has a grate pool of male candidates. Most of the guys I know – in Brazil – who are trying to be au pairs, apply via Interexchange.

The good thing is that for a boy to be accept as an au pair (at Cultural Care, at least, where I used to work before becoming an au pair – and they also have a good number of male au pairs), they need 1000 hours of experience (vs. 200 for a girl), a very good English and experience teaching a sport. Still, they normally took months to find a family (girls normally would have a match in a few weeks).

Taking a Computer Lunch June 15, 2010 at 6:48 am

We use APIA because they have the Au Pair Extraordinnaire program for candidates with extensive childcare experience, including education. We have not always matched with extraordinnaires, but do about 2/3 of the time. Yes, we pay more, but it’s peace of mind for care for The Camel. I don’t know whether APIA discourages men from applying. HD himself quit his job and took care of The Camel for 21 months after I went back to work, so I think he would be open to a male caregiver. I would think the recommenders would have to be top notch and write clearly about their experience with the male caregiver, not just check of boxes in order to persuade HF that EC was a serious candidate.

NY Host Mom June 15, 2010 at 6:57 am

I am open to a male au pair as well. I think having less drama would be a refreshing change for us. I have a question though. I have a son who would enjoy another male figure in the house, but I also have a ten year old daughter who looks more and more grown up every day. I’m a little concerned about having a male au pair around her. Anyone have any thoughts? Is that a silly concern?

AnnaAuPair June 15, 2010 at 7:50 am

I think that there has already been a post on that (I think it was called “When would you hire a male AuPair” or sth.) Maybe you’ll find some answers there :)

cv harquail June 15, 2010 at 9:03 am

Hi Anna-
thanks for mentioning the other post. The link is on this post, but here it is again:
Male Au Pairs: When would you hire one? (Poll)
http://aupairmom.com/why-is-a-good-manny-so-hard-to-find/2010/06/14/male-au-pairs-when-would-you-hire-one-poll/2009/09/22/celiaharquail/

maleaupairmommy June 15, 2010 at 3:02 pm

Thank You! Thank You! As many of you well know I only take male au pairs. I have two boys and one spoiled princess. She is spoiled not only by her dad and brothers but by her male au pairs who are the worst offenders. She didn’t learn to walk til she was 18 months because daddy and the male au pair who hold her and carry her everywhere. She thinks the men are there to carter to her every whim. Sigh if for some reason any of her future boyfriend’s mothers are out there I apoligize. Joking aside I know because of her exposure to good male role models who treat her with respect and pure love she will have good self esteem and be choosy about the men she has in her life. My boys love to rough house and I must say my only rematch was with a female au pair and that was drama. I’m on a host family board and though I long for another female in the house I steer away due to the drama of it all.
CC yes they are good but they totally ignore the boys they are not on the advertising pages, the stuff they have is pink like their pink sweatshirt just got gray this year or last. It’s like they are an afterthought. My favorite country Venezuela refused, was rude, and turned away many male applicants one I prematched on my own with because there were no male spots open yeah there were no male au pairs for when I wanted to match. I was so mad!! Wish they had a section just for male au pairs on available au pairs too many girls and not enough boys. Right now I have the best male au pair he wakes up happy, does laundry on his days off, takes the kids just to hang out on his free time, has an active normal social life with american friends, and never complains. I feel like the spoiled princess he is better at remembering the kids schedule than I am. I work 12 hour night shifts so I forget the days of the week sometimes. He read the rule book and follows it to the T. I haven’t had to worry about the kids rooms or bedding since his arrival. He doesn’t compare his life to other host families though his girlfriend has one baby and he has 3 kids 6,5, and 4 that are loud and two with ADHD. Thank you again au pair mommy. BTW All but one I prematched on my own I don’t trust CC with this they are the ones who didn’t listen to me and assumed I wanted a girl and kept matching with a girl so i gave in and got my horrible match. I wan young and inexperienced host mom than now I’m much wiser thanks to you, my host mom facebook group, and living the experience. My hubby loves it because he can wear his boxers anytime and he has a beer drinking buddy on the au pairs day off and someone to go to basketball games and talk sports with.

EC June 15, 2010 at 7:24 pm

Thank you for providing some encouragment maleaupairmommy. It can be very frustrating to have thousands of hours more experience than other au pair candidates and have agencies turn you down because you are the wrong sex. I am glad to see that there are some people who want, or at least are willing to consider male au pairs.
Since you prematch I don’t suppose you are going to be looking again any time soon? :)

Riswan January 7, 2012 at 5:34 am

I’m a 23 years old experienced manny (male au pair) from India, trustworthy, reliable, hard-working, modest looking for a wonderful family if you are interested please mail me at riswaniofd@gmail.com, I will forward you my professional manny (male au pair) CV for your kind consideration.

Thank you

kind regards
Riswan

EC June 15, 2010 at 7:10 pm

Hey NY Mom. I foudn your comment interesting and since it seems to reflect a theme of concerns parents have regarding male au pairs I thought I would share a thought. There seems to be an idea amongst parents that it is odd for a young man to care for kids, especially when it comes to their little girls. For some reason this is never, or rarely a concern where female au pairs and young boys are concerned.
It seems as if you might have two concerns about having a male au pair around your 10 year old. The first being the idea that it is odd for a young man to be looking after a yougn girl and what if something innapropriate were to happen. I can understand this fear, but I would say that any well vetted au pair, whether male or female is not going to be the kind of person who is au pairing so that they can abuse yougn children.
The second issue I could see would be your daughter developing a crush on a male au pair, and him having to deal with that in a way that avoids too many hurt feelings. I would say that a good au pair, who is mature should be able to deflect any such feelings, without causing too much difficulty. I would also say that there is just a much a risk of this with a boy developing a crush on his female au pair.
I may be way off base with those answers and if those were not the concerns you had in mind I am sorry for rambling, but if they are, then I hope I have helped answer them.

Calif Mom June 15, 2010 at 8:20 pm

10 (well, 9 really) is about the age when HD started refusing to assist his daughter after showers (read: no longer felt comfortable putting his head in the bathroom to “explain” that half an hour is too long for a shower for any person, especially one as short as a 9 yo.)

Thanks to the Pigtail Pal blog that CV posted in the right nav, I did some reading last night about these issues and OH BOY! Here it comes like a freight train. (I’ve been in heavy denial about pre-teenness in general.) S

I guess my point here is that I’m very sure I wouldn’t want a male au pair for my 10 yo daughter; she is going to need more privacy from here on out.

background: I *did* have a male nanny (live out) for a year or so, with two daughters. My oldest was in kindergarten at the time. No issues with his being a guy, really we parted ways because he was so uncomfortable in his own skin. Can’t be an easy row to hoe, being a male, caucasian, US born and Southern bred “manny”!

CHI (Cultural Homestay International) has a LOT of guys in their database.

Riswan January 7, 2012 at 5:38 am

Don’t worry I’m a modest, experienced manny (male au pair) 23 years old from India, I won’t take a girl friend! If you are interested mail me at riswaniofd@gmail.com, and I will forward you my professional manny CV for your kind consideration.

Thank you

StephinBoston June 15, 2010 at 8:23 am

I would definitely consider a male au pair in the next few years. My boys are 4 and 5 now but once they are both in school and we’re running from one sport to the other, I’ll be interested in having a young man who can keep up with them! Like West Coast Mom, my DH was also a little skeptical when I mentioned it, but I think as the boys gets older, he’ll be more open to it. I know I’d miss having a another woman in the house, I already have a house full of boys!
A question for host parents who have had a male au pair, how much more is car insurance for a male under 25? It’s expensive for a female, I’m a little afraid to ask for males, it’s got to be crazy!

MTR June 15, 2010 at 10:19 am

I cannot answer you regarding male au pairs as we have only had females, but I can tell you the car insurance depends widely on the location (city/state), company, and policy that you have.

I know that for some families their insurance almost doubles with female au pairs, where as for us we only have additional $8/months. My friends does not pay anything additional on her car insurance, for her female au pairs. I would guess, that with male au pairs there would be same amount if discresion across geographic areas.

maleaupairmommy June 15, 2010 at 3:06 pm

fom what I can gather male au pairs are about the same as a young female. For some odd reasons all my male au pairs have been 22 or 21 who quickly turned 22.

zurial June 16, 2010 at 1:00 am

In my area, it’s a couple hundred more to add a male driver under 25 than a female under 25.

Claudine Hanani June 15, 2010 at 9:22 am

I think the most important consideration about an AP, male or female, is the trust you have in them — their training, their education, their character. You have to trust a female AP no less and maybe in response to different fears. Any time you leave your child with a caregiver, and to do so with confidence, requires you to put in the time to know the person and be able to trust your gut. There might be different reasons for caution between a male and female AP, but both require you to have put in the time to do adequate research into the APs background and the agency that you are working with. A smaller matching agency provides a much higher level of personalized care and customized matching of Host Family to AP. A specialized agency like ProAuPair only works with Professional Au Pairs with education (98% are college graduates), training and experience. They match a smaller number of higher quality candidates with families They also have a special needs program with OTs, PTs, special education teachers — with clinical experience and theoretical training. I think it’s about trusting your gut, doing the legwork to know the person, and working with an agency that puts in the time to do a refined match with quality candidates.

hOstCDmom June 15, 2010 at 1:16 pm

You should disclose that you are a consultant for ProAuPair when you make such postings. It does not invalidate your comments or post, but full disclosure is fair and relevant for readers to receive your comments in context.

NoVA Host Mom June 15, 2010 at 1:18 pm

Nicely done, hOstCDmom!

NoVA Host Mom June 15, 2010 at 10:02 am

I know of some male APs in APIA, but not many. Not knowing how things overseas really work, is it possible to interview or at least put your name in as interested with more than one? In looking around for information on a future topic here, I noticed a few female AP candidates stated they had started out with more than one place (I saw APIA, CC, and APC).

NoVA Host Mom June 15, 2010 at 12:06 pm

Just checked aupairclearinghouse.com myself. Says right there that APIA does not have male APs. I guess the guys our AP had mentioned were from another agency. Who knows. My “mommy brain” is in overdrive (lack of sleep) these days, and I am missing my real brain. Let me know if anyone sees it.

Feel free to ignore me on this one, except that I would check for information on the different agencies. It might help you get more focused on agencies.

CCDC Mom June 15, 2010 at 11:04 am

We had a male au pair back in 2003 when we were with Cultural Care, and he was absolutely wonderful. It did seem at the time that male au pair candidates were unusually well-qualified, but sat on the shelf for a longer time. When we expressed a willingness to host a male au pair, CC was pretty thrilled and sent us several candidates at once. We switched to APIA 4 years ago after we experienced a marked decline in service and in qualified applicants at CC (things may have changed, but I still can’t contemplate returning to them). APIA definitely does not accept male au pair applicants, which I know because I asked this specific question. In an effort to find a male au pair this year we also looked at candidates through GoAuPair, but I never heard back from the few I contacted. I got the sense GAP was too small an agency to really support a large number of qualified applicants, and their matching database was awkward and glitchy. We continue to use APIA because, in my own experience, it has the best support, a very wide range of well-qualified applicants and an excellent, easy to manipulate database. I just wish they accepted male au pairs and then for us they’d be perfect!

NJMom June 15, 2010 at 11:22 am

We’re with CC and because we have two girls we would not consider a male AP however there have been at least one or two in our cluster since we started using them 4-plus years ago. I know a couple have flaked out (went home after two months) but a few have been great AP’s for their families. Probably the same drop out rate as for females. I’m curious about above poster’s comments re: CC. I have noticed a desperate tone their marketing this past year. They have all kinds of incentives and ploys to keep/get host families. I thought it was the recession but perhaps it’s something deeper they need to correct.

CCDC Mom June 15, 2010 at 1:48 pm

We were with CC from 2000-2006 and were very happy with our first 6 au pairs. When we first signed up with CC, we received excellent matches with well qualified candidates and almost invariably went with the first candidate they sent to us. Later it felt like pulling teeth to get qualified applicants, and we began having to review 8-10 applications to come up with a decent candidate. “Experience” was often limited to a 10 day internship as a helper in a Kindergarten and a few weeks spent helping a friend or relative to care for her child. This despite specific and repeated requests to the match coordinators for certain types of childcare experience. Because of the one-au pair-at-a-time review process, it felt like the matching process took forever. We finally ended up compromising in order to complete the matching process in a timely manner–it became “well the kids are older now and we’re an experienced host family, so let’s take a chance since this candidate seems very nice”. Very Big Mistake. In the last year with CC ended up transitioning through 4 au pairs because one after the other did not work out, I believe in large part because of their lack of childcare experience. They just didn’t know what they were getting themselves into, and CC did not prepare them or screen them sufficiently. During these transitions, CC administrators were not at all helpful. Because our first 6 years went very smoothly, we had no reason to interact with the Boston office, so I don’t know if this was a recent thing.

The 4th “transition” finally prompted me to contact APIA in the hopes that maybe they would do a better job, and they certainly did. They did not require me to pay ANY fees unless/until I chose one of their candidates. Their local coordinator, who came to interview me (something that all au pair agencies are required by law to do each year, but that on occasion did not happen with CC), was very knowledgeable about the program, her au pairs and the educational, volunteer and social opportunities in the area. With CC I was often told to “call the Boston office” to find a doctor or a driving instructor for my au pairs (I ended up finding them myself)–the APIA coordinator had a list of such useful information. I found that the APIA candidates were uniformly more qualified than the CC ones I was seeing, and the reviews of these candidates were far more in depth than those received with the CC candidates. When I had questions and left a message for a contact person at APIA, I received a call back that same day. When I did the same with CC, I either never heard back or only heard back days later.

I have not been through transition once since moving to APIA in 2006 and I continue to be happy with their support service as well as their candidate pool. I also think their matching process is very flexible, searchable and well-organized. I know it’s more expensive than other programs, and I know that my experience may not match that of others, but for me it has been worth it.

MommyMia June 15, 2010 at 3:06 pm

Interesting. My experience (although not as many years) has been almost the opposite. It must depend on what region you’re in and the expertise of the LCC in your area. We were ready to switch to CC from APIA last year, but after their coordinator came across as very unprofessional in the family interview/home visit, we stayed with the known factor, despite the greater expense. And we always do have to pay before being able to start the matching process; maybe it’s different for new vs. repeat families?

Calif Mom June 15, 2010 at 8:29 pm

My experience with APIA, too, was the opposite of CCDC’s. It started out with great service and we really loved our counselor (not impressed with their screening of candidates, though — more candidates to choose from is not better!).

IMHO, your experience depends on the counselor to an amazing degree. And I’m sorry, but they were unwilling to cut me a deal after several years as a loyal customer. Really? Even in this economy? Even when I point out that your fees are $2,000 more than others? Guess they really didn’t want to keep me unless I pitch their biz for them to my friends. Uh, no. Improve your counselor, then maybe I’ll stick my neck out with my friends about their childcare… hmmm. No. Not even then. Too risky! I would hate to lose a friendship if a mom friend ended up with Pointy Boots Redux as their first au pair. Certainly not worth $500.

Anna June 15, 2010 at 8:57 pm

Yes, a friend with APIA told me they only give some sort of a discount if a family was with them for 6 years…
In my scant experience with two agencies, one – AuPairCare – only gives free application fee to repeat families, while another one – AuPairUSA/Interexchange gives a generous agency fee discount (to renewing AND switching from other agency families) PLUS a free application fee (which you can get anyway for most agencies in one of their “sale” periods)

Should be working June 15, 2010 at 12:11 pm

I would be thrilled to have a male AP sometime, but HD is opposed. The 2 moms I know who have male APs say they are great–no drama, uncomplaining, and tireless. One mom has 4 little boys and is a SAHM; she says she needs to be able to send them all in the backyard to play soccer and get TIRED. Another mom has an older girl and 2 younger boys.

I know CC has male APs, not sure about other agencies. BTW I think ALL the agencies have discounts and so forth to lure customers or returning customers. I switched agencies last year, and the other agencies I spoke to offered me essentially the same deals.

In terms of advertising oneself as a male AP, surely the single largest obstacle is that HPs worry about sexual abuse. Not sure how to deal with that as a candidate. I suppose those families that can get past that worry are the ones that the male AP candidate would be speaking to in the first place.

Aria June 15, 2010 at 12:45 pm

https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=32916951&postID=2455531230742107961

there was an interesting post on I Saw Your Nanny a week or so ago about male childcare providers. I don’t really have anything else to add to the discussion except for the link. :)

Pia Aupair June 15, 2010 at 1:21 pm

That is a great article and i agree. I even got to say that every time I see a male aupair i am wondering why they choose to be an aupair.

but especially in the au pair program you have to say that males are usually more qualified and absolutely interested in caring for children cause i doubt that a boy how just wants to travel and party would make this effort.
boys often have to provide more references and have to have more then twice as many hours as girls do (at least for aupair care in germany)
and i as a female aupair have to say we have (sometimes)quite some drama here ;-)
and for that aspect you are probably better off with a male.

Mom of 2 June 15, 2010 at 1:17 pm

I am a local coordinator with Cultural Care and I can tell you that we do indeed have male Au Pairs in our candidate pool and some great ones at that!

Cultural Care only accepts the very best of the best male applicants. Males tend to be able to handle multiple children very well and aren’t afraid to communicate in a direct way, which makes for less misunderstandings with host families during the year. On average, they have more childcare experience than female au pairs and they are more likely to extend their year. Male au pairs are very focused and dedicated. Often, being an au pair is a part of their career path.

If the host parents are more concerned with finding the best candidate possible versus being stuck on someone of a certain nationality, age or religion, sometimes they will be open to gender, too.

While the majority of host families request a female au pair, many of them may not know the incredible opportunity they could be missing out on by not considering a male au pair. Only a small percentage of our applicants are male and this limited group is of the highest caliber. They are excited to be a part of the program and provide another element to the cultural exchange experience. Some families may shy away from this option as they think only of women in the au pair role, but we have young men from around the world who will be a wonderful companion, role model, friend, and compassionate caregiver for their children.

In fact, the International Au Pair Association (IAPA) chose a Cultural Care Au Pair for the second year in a row as the Au Pair of the year. In 2009 the winner was not only a Cultural Care Au Pair, but a male Cultural Care Au Pair. You can use the following link to see more details about him, including a video. http://www.culturalcare.com/aboutus/pressroom/au-pair-of-the-year-2008.aspx

This is really a great example why hosting a male Au Pair could be a great option for many families!

KM June 15, 2010 at 1:38 pm

When I look at my son, it’s sad to think he would be disqualified from an au pair program because of his gender. So we keep an open mind when selecting au pairs. The agency we use has male au pairs but not many. We use the same criteria in our selection process and try not to make generalizations based on gender, country, family history, etc.

courtj June 15, 2010 at 3:04 pm

We thought about hosting a male as our next au pair, however, our CC placement manager seemed to push us towards the females. I think next year we will look for a male.

maleaupairmommy June 15, 2010 at 3:20 pm

Please do I know so many great male au pairs I am not with CC or any agency just love male au pairs and encourage them a long their journey met a lot when I see they are discourage on the CC facebook sites and help them through til they find their families they do eventually some take longer than others. I tell them their are host moms like me who have boys and girls and it will be okay just patients and they have to have tons of experience, driving skills, and higher level of english in comparsion to girls with CC due to lack of spots there are only so many spots for male au pairs and some countries dont accept them at all or put acceptance on hold til there are more.

SotaGal June 15, 2010 at 4:08 pm

mapm, we are thinking about getting a male au pair. We are with APC and they have a few males, and we are contemplating switching to APIA. Are there other resources for finding a great male au pair?

KM June 15, 2010 at 4:37 pm

You may want to visit agency web sites to find out if they offer male au pairs. Some of them have mini profiles of au pairs on their sites – you can glance to see if there are male au pairs. One friend had a male au pair from France. He was gay. Our friend said he was the best au pair they had for three boys and one daughter. He’s still part of their family even though he finished his two years with them.

maleaupairmommy June 15, 2010 at 5:58 pm

That is the other thing male au pairs mostly likely to extent with same family.

Former French Au Pair June 15, 2010 at 8:31 pm

You could also apply with a couple of agencies and start the matching process until you find the right male au pair for your family. The agency I work with sometimes waves the application fee so there is no obligation to “final” with us (and no upfront cost), but it would give you a chance to interview more candidates.

EC June 16, 2010 at 11:20 am

If you are thinking of getting a male Au pair then you don’t want to switch to APIA. They were the first agency I looked into and even though I qualified for their extrodinaire program in terms of experience (if not the professional qualification) they turned me down as soon as they saw I was male.
According to the rep I spoke to they do not have any families in their pool who would be interested in a male au pair. I found that hard to believe, but that is their recruiting policy

MommyMia June 16, 2010 at 1:24 pm

I, too, find that hard to believe. But, their reps so far have not impressed me with being in touch with their consumers. You can see from the postings on this site that many families absolutely would consider and many already have had great experiences with male APs. Someone at APIA should do some research and get in touch with their clients, because with their prices, they’re soon apt to be losing out on the best families!

anonmom June 16, 2010 at 11:45 am

We have used greataupair.com to rpematch with au pairs. We even had one switch agencies to match with us. That is one resource you can use- and we also have registered with more than one agency to increase our applicant pool.

SotaGal June 15, 2010 at 4:23 pm

We have finally had enough drama from our female AP’s. While we are still looking at females, we are including males in our search as well. DH wasn’t into the idea at first, but after several examples of his closest friends who I could envision being au pairs when they were younger he saw my point. His 1st reaction was that a male au pair would be creepy, but he has 3 friends that are great with kids – have always babysat and now work in education directly with kids and LOVE it. Our girls preschool has one male teacher and he is fabulous – warm hearted, energetic and and has a great relationship with the kids and all of their parents.

My main reasons for wanting a male au pair:
– less drama
– tireless playmate
– not afraid to get dirty/hot/sweaty
– won’t worry about messing hair or makeup while playing
– my stereotype of a male au pair is that they must REALLY enjoy kids to sign up for the AP program, more so than girls.

We have had female au pairs that refuse to take the kids outside to play because its too hot outside, they don’t want to get sweaty. Its been one of those things that I stress during the interview and they say they’d be fine with it. Once they get here the story changes. We live in Austin and its too hot outside between the months of April through October….. We’ve had female au pairs late for work because they were blowdrying their hair. We’ve had female au pairs come home in tears because of tiffs with their au pair friends. I also hope that male au pairs are better at making American friends through involvement in sports. Only one female AP made friends with any Americans and they were all boys. She also thought she was pregnant 3 times during the 5 months she was with us.

Calif Mom June 15, 2010 at 8:35 pm

Do people really experience drama from APs because they are *female* or because they are drama queens?

I haven’t had to deal with a bit of stereotypical female drama from either of our two best–decidedly female–au pairs.

Maybe it’s maturity that you need from your next au pair. And that’s not a sex-linked trait. Just a thought. {exit soapbox} ;-)

calif mom June 15, 2010 at 8:39 pm

(My female au pair is off at her weekly volleyball game as I write this. Maybe you need to select for APs that aren’t perfectly coiffed in their photos!) And our favorite APs will play with hoses in the yard, and get dirty, and sweaty.

I didn’t mean to come off as snarky, SotaGal, because that hairdryer thing would drive me nuts, too, and it sounds like you’ve struck out.

So many variables are involved! It’s hard to separate causation from correlation…

no hard feelings?

PA AP mom June 16, 2010 at 2:24 pm

I agree with Calif Mom. Not sure it’s really gender related.

Our last AP was a shop model back in Germany. She couldn’t even walk the boys to the bus stop without full makeup. Never wanted to go outside for fear of sweating or messing up her hair (windy).

This time we looked for a more athletic au pair. We found one who played a sport in her home country and also had several pictures of her hiking, playing sports and at sporting events.

She’s perfect. My boys actually complain sometimes that she wants to go outside TOO MUCH!

SotaGal June 17, 2010 at 12:10 am

Not snarky at all… To put it mildly – I have made some horrible choices with our au pairs and 2 have outright lied. Even the AP we thought was perfect for our family, fit in right away, loved the kids and us and we her, went above and beyond; she deliberately omitted a huge piece of information which would have made us not match with her and she later turned into a princess. She decided she didn’t want to tell me that she had au paired for a family in her home country with a stay at home parent and HATED it because of how well we got on in all of our talks; she felt horribly uncomfortable, self conscious, and like she was always being watched. DH and I both work from home and NEED an AP that can take charge of the kids while we are at work. She also asked us to buy a car for her.

So while I have had the sporty or even active girls along with the ones that wear full makeup to the pool, I feel like I need to make a change… Choosing a male au pair is kind of my fresh start I guess.

PA AP mom June 17, 2010 at 12:32 am

Good luck SotaGal!!!

I hope a male au pair is exactly what your family needs for your fresh start.

Aupairgal June 17, 2010 at 4:36 am

Totally not relevant but YAY AUSTIN, TX!!!!!

Former French Au Pair June 15, 2010 at 8:38 pm

I also wanted to say thanks for writing on this topic! I am personally guilty of sometimes forgetting to write “s/he” when I discuss au pairs on my blog, or mentioning that option to interested families.
It is however mainly a result of the fact that my host moms (usually the decision-maker in the matching process) have told me they are not comfortable with a male au pair or their husband is not. It is a stretch already for a lot of them to start hosting somebody into their home. My audience is typically more traditional, but this article is a reminder to ensure I take the time to promote some of our fantastic male au pairs too!!

zurial June 16, 2010 at 12:55 am

Over the years, I’ve had 9 male au pairs and 3 female au pairs. For all of them, I’ve used APC. While there are not a lot, each time I’ve had to search for a male au pair, APC has provided at least several candidates that met my needs.

I have 3 kids and the middle one is a girl. I had the same concerns that others had echoed about a tween age girl interacting with a male au pair. That’s one of the reasons why I had some female au pairs off and on for a while. However, it ended up that my concerns were unfounded and I went back to male au pairs. All the au pairs I’ve had, regardless of gender, established a big brother or big sister relationship with my daughter. The au pairs didn’t see my daughter in that way and were more interested in a relationship with someone closer to their own age. I tend to screen for very responsible au pairs. If it’s worth anything, three of my male au pairs got married shortly after they finished their year with me. Two were in committed relationships before they started their year. None of the female au pairs I had arrived or left in a committed relationship.

I would say that I tend to prefer males over females because I’m looking for someone who is serious about being an au pair. Since males often have to prove themselves more, they tend to be the more experienced candidates. Since they have to make the extra effort to prove themselves, they also tend to have a stronger commitment to the program. Normally, I get a very experienced and dedicated person when I pick a male.

My husband tends to get along better with the male au pairs. He doesn’t find a lot of common interests with the females.

My daughter is very athletic and she is the main one pushing for male au pairs now because they tend to have sports experience and are willing to participate and play with my daughter and my other two kids more than what I’ve seen of the female au pairs we’ve had.

Other families I’ve know who have had male au pairs have chosen them because there were only boys in the family and they wanted someone to be a big brother to the kids. One family I know chose a male because they didn’t want to deal with their impressionable son having a crush on a female au pair. Another family chose a male for their special needs son because they felt a female couldn’t handle the physical requirements that they had. I believe this family used CC to find their au pairs.

Although we’re small in number, there are families out there looking for male au pairs!

Deb Schwarz June 16, 2010 at 3:44 am

Oh my….this is a touchy subject for me because having seen all the wonderful male au pairs in my group (and beyond), I would LOVE one, but my husband doesn’t share my enthusiasm (I guess he might feel a little challenged?) – we have 3 girls and a boy so I have tried to understand his POV, so alas, our 16 au pairs (yes, we’ve had that many), have all been female. I also work for Cultural Care (multiples specialist and LCC) and I can tell you from experience that there are many truly stellar male au pair candidates out there. It’s all about supply and demand, so if you are interested in a male au pair (just like with a 6 month extension), you will have the pick of the litter (so to speak…). BTW, I was told that CC is the only agency that is currently placing male au pairs.

Anna June 16, 2010 at 7:04 am

Deb,

its not true that CC is the only agency currently placing male au pairs.
My new au pair just arrived (end of May) via AuPairUSA (Interexchange), and they had a male au pair in their orientation session.

pia Aupair June 16, 2010 at 8:07 am

aupair care places males too. we just had a french boy arrive in our cluster.

EC June 16, 2010 at 11:24 am

I just wanted to thank everyone who has commented so far for the advice and encouragement. It is really nice to see that there are at least some families that are enthusiastic about male au pairs. I am in the process of applying with APC, so hopefully that will go well. If not, interexchange will be my next port of call. If there are any other comments or pieces of advice that those who have had/would consider having a male, please continue to share.
Thanks again to you all

SotaGal June 17, 2010 at 12:14 am

EC, we are with APC. Do you have any idea what arrival date you might be available for?

– stacy

EC June 17, 2010 at 6:33 pm

Hi Sotagal.
I have just recieved all the application info from APC today, so am hoping to get it all filled in an back to them in a week to ten days. I am probably going to be looking at an earliest arrival date of the end of July if everything goes smoothly. Let me know if that might be of any use to you. A pre-match would take a lot of worry about getting placed out of the equation for me.
E

DarthaStewart June 17, 2010 at 9:21 pm

Just FYI. I’ve pre-matched with APC in the past, but they don’t allow it anymore. (I’ve had au-pairs who were sisters, two years back to back, and they let me pre-match, but when I asked about a year ago, they said they no longer allow it)

Anna June 18, 2010 at 5:28 am

Wow, that’s disappointing to hear.
Usually for a pre-match there is a discount; so this is another way APC is holding on to our money. I was

SotaGal June 20, 2010 at 11:24 pm

Hey EC,
July might be too early for us – we have so much going on this summer but I would love to learn more about you. Maybe we could share some emails, and if anything, I can have my matching expert here in the US look out for your profile for me when you are “officially ” in their system. My email is stacycollins01@msn.com

look forward to hearing from you!

EC June 23, 2010 at 5:15 pm

Hey Sotagirl, thanks for the interest. I dropped you an email the other day. I look forward to hearing from you.

Jan June 16, 2010 at 5:42 pm

Thanks for the interesting topic. We have cosnidered/interviewed male au pairs but always decided against it b/c we have two boys and are more worried about sexual abuse with a male care giver verses a female care giver.

Our LCC strongly encourages male au pair’s – she says they are more reliable and are great with high energy boys. Maybe the next time around we will change. We are with APC, and they always have several males. If you don’t find them on a general search you can e-mail your match coordinator for some interviews.

NVMom June 17, 2010 at 12:42 am

Thanks for this thread I have a question for everyone who had had a male aupair. I have 2 boys and a girl, I personally don’t have a problem with a male around AND don’t think that a male vs a female around my little girl is any different. I agree with what everyone has said here. My question is this, how comfortable were the host moms with having a 20 something young man around? My husband is a fireman and is gone from anywhere from 24 hrs to 72 hrs at a time. How comfortable are you as a HM with this and are your husbands? Not trying to be sexist but I am totally comfortable alone in my home with a 20 something year old female not sure about a 20 something year old male? Mom’s with experience, thoughts? comments?

maleaupairmommy June 17, 2010 at 12:45 pm

I’m totally comfortable with a male au pairs. Ironically enough I didn’t have that many guy friends growing up due to being shy. It’s nice and fun having them around they see things in a different light. I just get use to it and makes me apperciate them more. For me not uncomfortable at all because I don’t see them in any other way. I do hate some of the comments from other woman and co-workers but they are just jealous .. hahaha. Trust me once you get a great male au pair without the drama and the moodiness you won’t go back it’s too painful. Every year i’m tempted than I see how much trouble the other host moms have and I said no. BTW I have two boys and the youngest is a girl ages: 6,5,4 and we started when the youngest was 18 months old so yeah had to change her diapers and give baths …. just like her dad did!!

Calif Mom June 17, 2010 at 1:20 pm

I have a mom friend who has had at least two male au pairs; her husband traveled a lot and she had a lot of fun joking about finally having a man around the house, never mind that he was gay.

I do think you need to be comfortable in your own skin and able to fend off stupid comments and funny looks from colleagues, other moms at the grocery store, etc.

zurial June 21, 2010 at 1:02 am

I spend a lot of time advising older teens of both genders in my home so I’m used to being alone with someone from this age group. Because of this, being alone with a male au pair in their early twenties was not a problem for me. I think of the au pair as like a younger brother or cousin typically. My husband and I have been married for a long time. We have a strong relationship so it was not a threat for him to have a male au pair in the home.

My husband travels for work. Often he is away for a week or so each month. I don’t feel like I’m alone with the au pair for a long time because often what happens is that when I’ come back from work, au pair and I may chat for about half an hour at most then au pair goes off duty and is heading out the door to enjoy himself. I go to bed and I don’t see him again until the morning when he comes on duty again.

What was unusual for me was that the kid’s grandfather used to live with me and was uncomfortable being alone with the female au pairs. He’s from an earlier time and thought it inappropriate for him to stay alone with an unattended female.

Something for HD to think about is whether you are comfortable being in public with the male au pair and the kids but HM is not there. In my area, people may think that HD and au pair are in a relationship. We have pretty liberal views so it was not a problem for us.

Stephanie Braun June 17, 2010 at 8:22 am

Thanks everyone for all your great words about male au pairs, makes me really want to look for one for our next match, time to work on DH :-)

SotaGal August 20, 2010 at 4:11 pm

I am so grateful to have found this blog. I have learned so much from selecting au pairs all the way through hosting for a successful year. After our last match ended in rematch I was ready to throw in the towel, pay 2K a month for daycare plus sitters as needed. A real eye opener for me was the thought of a male AP.

We just matched today with “EC” and we are so excited! Had I not read this blog I wouldn’t have been in contact with him before his application was completed nor would I have even looked at it once it was. His experience far and away exceeds any other AP that we have hosted and he is such a well rounded young man. I can honestly say that we have no reservations about having a male au pair, plus our 8 YO son is SUPER excited and even our twins who are almost 4 are looking forward to it. Their pre-k teacher is also a male so its nothing new for them.

MommyMia August 21, 2010 at 12:41 am

I’m so happy for you! Hope it all works out better than you’re expecting. Many times I think getting rid of all the drama and emotion of young women would be worth the additional questions and explanations that having a male au pair would entail. It sounds like EC has found a great family.

EC August 21, 2010 at 9:51 pm

You beat me to it again Stacey! I wanted to say thank you for all the encouragment and advice I got from everyone who commented on how to make it as a male au pair. As Sotagal has said, we have just matched and I am equally excited about being a part of their family for the year,. I hope that if any other guys who are thinking about applying to be an au pair come across this they can take encouragement from my experience. I have to say that I am also grateful for finding this blog, as I might be waiting a lot longer to match with a family.
I cannot wait to hand in my notice at the pub I work at right now and start organising for coming to the states for the year.
thanks for all the advice again
EC

Carlos April 26, 2011 at 6:00 am

I’m very happy for you EC.
Your story has encouraged me and for what I’ve read there actually are families that are looking for male au pairs… I’m currently applying but I don’t have thousands of hours of experience… I’d say that I have around 500 in total al 200 of them alone with kids…

I’m waiting for a match right now… What advice can you tell me to find a family as soon as possible?

Randi Eighmey September 9, 2010 at 5:09 pm

how Do you acknowledge this ?

Eddy October 6, 2010 at 12:27 pm

What do you mean by ” how do you acknowledge this”?

Carlos April 26, 2011 at 5:57 am

I think this is pretty amazing…

just some dude August 18, 2011 at 4:39 pm

a man not think for real about marriage before he pass his 30 birthday.
and if he do, it is not for real he lie to him self.
so if you gilrs looking for serious guy to make family. think twice.

Carlos August 19, 2011 at 3:25 am

It’s been so long since I read this thread that I forgot what it was about.
APmom asked if there’s any agency willing to provide for male childcare givers and for any interested young man, I’m with Cultural Care AuPair, they do accept male au pairs and encourage families to try a male au pair on their families, I even found a video promoting it. check it out:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJtczP-ZOy8&feature=channel_video_title

Riswan January 7, 2012 at 5:13 am

I’m a 23 years old experienced manny from India, trustworthy, reliable, hard-working looking for a wonderful family if anyone interested please mail me at riswaniofd@gmail.com

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