How to find a babysitter in the USA
In the US, young mothers have to go to work through 12 weeks after giving birth. And then - either they give the child to a special kindergarten, grandparents rush to help, or a nanny appears in the house. ForumDaily figured out how to find the right Mary Poppins, and how much her services would cost.
What used to be: pregnancy or nanny
How to find a babysitter who can be trusted with your precious little man is a question so complicated that some American mothers begin to prepare for it even before pregnancy. For example, my neighbor Barbara did. She works in a private company, occupies a good position and knows that only 21 day in a year can be absent from work. The rest of the time - at their own expense, while you can lose your job altogether.
When Barbara asked if I had any acquaintances who could recommend her nanny, I wanted to congratulate her on the upcoming replenishment, but it turned out that the neighbor was not yet pregnant. Simply, she and her husband decided that they would first find a reliable candidate for the position of nanny, and then they would “work” on the child himself. Barbara said that this is a normal practice for those who are afraid of losing their jobs.
I could not entrust the child to others, and she herself became a nanny
Finding a babysitter is half the battle. It is important that she made contact with the child, and her mother had a calm heart. Zoya Demidovich arrived in Los Angeles with her husband and two children, found a good job in the bank, but when she gave birth to a baby, she quit. I decided to sit at home for a couple of years, and then find a nanny and go back to work. During these 2 years, Zoe looked narrowly at the nannies of her friends, watched women walking with other children in the park, and realized that she could not entrust her child to a stranger.
“I saw too many mistakes that babysitters make,” Zoe said. - About the fact that in the park, they constantly chat on the phone, and are not engaged with the child, I am silent. Often women, thinking that I was also a nanny, told me things that they were trying to hide from their employers. For example, instead of feeding the child a full meal, they bought snacks for him. ”
When my daughter turned 2 of the year, Zoe realized that there was no one on the horizon suitable for the role of nanny, and decided that she would become the nanny herself. And not only for the daughter, but also offer their services to other mothers.
So Zoya, from a loan specialist, has become a nanny - and for the sixth year, I am satisfied with my choice. “My daughter went to school this year, and I now look after three children, and after lunch I take my daughter and her classmate from school,” says Zoya.
Where to look?
When the question arises of finding a nanny, many, first of all, turn to friends and colleagues. But if there are no suitable candidates in the immediate environment, several sources come to the rescue at once. First of all, social networks. Moms are turning to "virtual friends" who can recommend a nanny or, conversely, write a negative review. And this is also very important in such a delicate matter concerning your own child. Marina Baranchuk from New York found an assistant through friends with whom the nanny worked.
“In New York, this works in 50% of cases,” says Marina. - In other cases, people are looking for nannies in special groups on Facebook. For example, there is a specialized group. Russian Nanny Exchangethere are groups in which mums communicateSuch communities of moms are not only in New York. If you write the phrase “mums in ...” in the Facebook search box and add your city or state, you will surely find a local group.
If you do not want to be limited to social networks, - advertise in the local press. To find a Russian-speaking nanny, contact the publication in Russian, if an American - contact the city or district newspaper. You can apply for a babysitter yourself, or you can view the “Looking for a Job” section. Perhaps a suitable candidate just placed there your ad.
See specialized sites. Elena Furman from Los Angeles shared her experience: “We were always looking for nannies through the 3 site - care.com, sittercity.com и craigslist.org. Here you can easily find ads and - choose, choose, choose. If the nanny with experience or she has a special education (Early Childhood Education degree), then the rates for such a nanny will be higher. ”
Elena advises not to trust everything that a potential nanny tells you when meeting you. If she has a special education - ask for a certificate. And if she refers to a lot of experience, ask for contacts of the families in which she worked. If you can, you should not limit yourself to a call to the family of the former employer, because it may well be a false source. Ask for permission to come to visit and ask the child, for whom the nanny was looking, what memories and impressions he had. Do not be embarrassed by your perseverance - at the other end of the phone you will be told the same mom, who will most likely understand and share your excitement and anxiety.
How much to pay?
It’s difficult to talk about the prices for babysitting services in the USA, because each state has different incomes and minimum wages. Amount according to care.com can range from 12 to 25 dollars per hour. But again - a lot depends on education, experience, nanny and staff. For example, if you are busy from 8 in the morning to 6 in the evening, 5 days a week, babysitter in Silicon Valley, with education and good recommendations will receive the maximum rate - about $ 3000. And Violetta Gazaeva from Chicago shares this experience: “We have a Mexican nanny, we pay $ 5 per hour. Since there is a lot of competition among Mexican women, they are prohibitively cutting prices, and few can offer lower prices. Nanny in our family already 3 of the year, before that she worked in the family from which we bought a house. ”
The family of Anna and Pavel Shumilov from Silicon Valley is allocated $ 4500 from the family budget for the nurse of their 5-year-old Camilla. Such a sum, according to Anna, is quite usual for the IT-region: “Even in San-Fancisco, to which it is a matter of course, the nanny will not pay so much, because there is more competition. In the Valley, one of the most important requirements is that a nanny should have the right to pick up a child from school or to take to studios and sports clubs. Therefore, the grandmothers of our immigrants are not suitable for such work. ”Anna was looking for a nanny in an original way. In the company where her husband works, an advertisement was sent by corporate mail, and one of his colleagues, whom Pavel was not even acquainted with, advised the nurse who raised his son.
Nanny with or without accommodation?
In America, the phenomenon of "nanny with accommodation." This means that the nanny not only works for you, but also lives in your home. Like any medal, this practice has 2 sides.
The advantages are obvious: the nanny needs to pay less, because you give her a roof over her head and, as it were, you rent a house from her salary, the nanny will never be late for work, and because of this you will not be late for your business either, she can always stay longer and, in the end, it replaces the child's grandmother and becomes a more intimate person. Practically, you acquire a “relative”, so it’s worth making an agreement so as not to make cohabitation with a nanny a nightmare for both parties.
And that's why. Anna Ulanova works as a nanny in Florida in the family of Americans and has become a real hostage to the situation. Her, as Anna jokes, was "inherited" by previous employers from San Francisco. She is a single woman, her children have grown up long ago. She agreed to move to the relatives of the former owners immediately, so as not to lose her earnings, part of which she sends to the children to their homeland.
“We discussed working conditions verbally,” says Anna. - The same duties as in San Francisco, the same number of free hours. But I did not take into account the fact that in San Francisco I went out of the house and went for a walk, or in a cafe, or shopping, or in the pool. And my new family lives in a tiny town, where from a high life - a shop at a gas station. In order to buy groceries or some of the things, I have to ask me to be taken to the mall. I see that the owners do not like it, I don’t want to lose my job, but my life is very, very sad now. I think that my mood can not affect the work. Thinking about returning to San Francisco. ”
The 2 mother of Kristina’s children (she asked not to give her last name) is completely different. Christina and her husband became hostages of a nanny in their own home. On the advice of the mother-in-law, the family “discharged” the nurse from overseas. In the United States, the nanny cannot work officially; she came as a tourist; she has no insurance. And this is not an isolated case. But the problem is different: the nanny does not limit his presence in the family to only work hours.
“When the children are put to bed, the nanny comes to my husband and I to talk and chat. We sit down to watch TV - she sits down with us, although her room has her own. Friends come to me, - the nanny is right there, although she has a day off on this day. It annoys me, my husband and I began to quarrel, he even began to specifically come home later from work or leave for friends, so as not to spend the evening in three. Dismiss the nanny, he does not want to not offend the mother, who sent us his girlfriend. I tried to talk to the nanny and to the mother-in-law, but it all ended up being called me rude and boorish. ”
Christina advises not to settle for a nanny with accommodation. Indeed, despite the fact that she provided her nanny with her leisure time — she entered the gymnasium in her gymnasium, wrote to the library, handed over the bicycle and bought a travel card for the bus, the nanny still behaves not as an employee, but as a family member.
What to feed, where to put the camera and other sensitive questions
If it seems to you that, hiring a nanny, it is enough to discuss (conditionally) how clay and how many times a day she will sculpt with a child is not so. Advance it is necessary to speak out and everyday issues that have become a stumbling block in other families.
For example, what a nanny will eat if she comes to your house. “In the fridge, the nanny has a shelf on which simple products stand: sausage, cheese, pate, juices, mineral water,” shares Marina Tumareva from Denver. - In the pantry, part of the shelf is also reserved for the nanny - soups and porridge bags, corn-peas and a couple of canned goods. Plus something for tea. ”
Julia Bukowska from New Jersey has a different approach. She immediately warned the nanny that she and her husband were vegetarians, they buy only environmentally-friendly and very expensive products for children, and she asks her to bring her food to the nanny. “It was very unpleasant to see on records from the camera that the nanny eats products that we buy for children,” says Julia.
By the way, the issue with video surveillance also often arises in families that hire a nanny. Does the nanny say that there is a camera in the house? How to observe what happens if the nanny looks after the child not at your place, but at home?
Svetlana from New York, the nanny comes home, there are always cameras in the house and, if necessary, you can check how things are: “The nurse knows that there are cameras in the house, but I see that she doesn’t even remember or pay attention to them. It’s common practice for America to have a camera in the house. ”
By the way, about the usual and unusual. Svetlana hired a nanny in a very unusual way - she entrusted the choice to the baby. “My child himself chose a nanny himself,” Svetlana tells about his experience. “Although at that time he was 2 of the year, he either turned away and left, or grabbed his hand and led him into his room to show toys. On an intuitive level. So the nanny was chosen. ”
Olesya Shubova from Boston thinks that it’s useless to ask a kid about how a nanny treats him. You need to turn on your intuition, gut feeling and pay attention to small details: “It takes several weeks, and during this time you need to understand that there are no people without flaws, you need to be able to be flexible.” Olesya herself does not put cameras at home, but only because that the husband works from home.
Olga Khubulova from New York herself once worked as a nanny, so she developed the criteria for a nanny for her child, based on experience. “I have cameras everywhere, all connected to phones, - to my mother, my husband. The nanny knew that there were cameras, but where exactly they were, we did not speak. In addition, moms-girlfriends from the playground were warned and told what they saw in the afternoon. We clearly stipulated important conditions: no phone, while the nanny with the child, if the child fell - do not panic, because everyone is falling and that's fine, but I need to know about it. The child cannot tell about the babysitter, because he does not talk, but the attitude is still visible. ”
Tatiana from Salt Lake City also advises to pay attention to the behavior and reaction of the child, and this will be better than any camera in the house: “As a nanny, we had a kindergarten teacher. My daughter ran to her and embraced her when she came, and always waited with joy. ”Is this not the best indicator that the child and the nanny have good contact.
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