Welcoming an Au Pair into your Home
Many families have glowing recollections of au pairs, and continue to integrate them into family life - inviting them to weddings, visiting their parents etc. - well after their departure. These are the success stories.
But failures are also legion, and there are lurid tales of communication breakdown, anorexia, young girls going off the rails, neglect of children, rows and sulks….
The relationship with an au pair is very finely balanced. She/he is, primarily, a guest in your home and must be integrated into family life. Au pairs are not well paid, so unrealistic demands should not be made of them, and they should be recompensed to some extent by family time, English conversation and exposure to English life. It is absolutely iniquitous to treat au pairs as low-paid skivvies.
On the other hand, au pairs have to realise that they are guests in your home, with certain responsibilities. They have to do things your way, eat what you eat, behave politely at all times, clean up after themselves, and - of course - take their responsibilities towards your children seriously.
Our Golden Rules for Nannies also apply to au pairs. In addition, you might consider our tips for settling au pairs in and making their stay as pleasant as possible.