Beginners, the term AU PAIR describes people who go abroad to work as a home help in a host family. They are live-in home help from another country.
Read the other 2 parts of the au pair series:
I have dated au pairs in the last a few years. Not only have I had a chance to understand their life and expectations, I have also sharpened my skills of dating them.
Guys who are reading this, this is your guide to success while entering an au pair’s life. From a coffee break to serious relationship, I have been through every stage of emotional roller coasters of an au pair’s life. The last time I had a date with an au pair was yesterday, so these tricks are up to date.
Au pairs who are reading this, you are AWESOME!
This post doesn’t apply to all au pairs! Everybody has a unique personality. This post reflects only my experience. Dear au pair friends, there is nothing to be offended! I have just shared my experience in a funny way. Your feedback is welcomed! Please feel free to comment. I read comments and sometimes edit the post accordingly.
It looks like there is a need for clarification 🙂 I don’t date only au pairs. I am not specifically looking for au pairs to date. I meet people on Tinder and other dating apps. Most of the time, I don’t even know if she is an au pair before I meet her. Majority of the people I meet are locals in the US.
1. Be patient with her English
English is not their native language. Just like any other person speaking a foreign language, they sometimes struggle with expressing themselves.
Give her time to make sentences. Help her with grammar and vocabulary. Guide her when she pauses and double checks what she said.
I’ll never forget my initial dialog with an au pair on our first date:
ME: Hi, how are you?
SHE: 21 years old
(This section doesn’t cover German and South African au pairs. Their English is pretty fluent and their accent sounds close to the American one. Congrats Germany and South Africa on good English education!)
2. Be ready to listen a LOT about her host kids and host parents
This is one of my strongest skills when it comes to dating au pairs. I can listen to their issues with their host parents and kids for a LONG time. I find it interesting and informative.
Their stories give me insights into the lives of different families and cultures. Their unique ways of dealing with monster kids and crazy parents teach me new lessons about life.
A dialog that took place between an au pair and her host mom:
(The au pair was supposed to watch Lucas, but he was hyperactive and hard to chase. They were at a hotel lobby)
HOST MOM: Where is Lucas?
AU PAIR: He was here a minute ago. I just turned my head to Michelle (Lucas’s sister) and Lucas disappeared.
HOST MOM (goes crazy): HOW COME YOU LOST MY KID? WATCHING THEM IS YOUR ONLY JOB! YOU CAN’T EVEN MANAGE THIS SIMPLE TASK! I CAN’T BELIVE THAT I TRUSTED YOU TO TAKE CARE OF MY KIDS! YOU ARE UNBELIEVABLE!!!
(Lucas showed up after a few seconds. The au pair went to rematch)
Another au pair complained to me about hearing her host parents having sex VERY LOUDLY EVERY NIGHT.
I thought this was extreme until I heard from another au pair that her host parents made out while she was IN THE SAME ROOM!
Wait for it…
Another au pair told me that her host mom never wanted to spend time with her own kid. She wanted to go out and drink with her friends. If she didn’t have a choice but being with her kid, she would put him in front of the TV and get lost on her phone.
Oh, I can’t stop.
Another au pair told me that her host dad fell in love with her. He told her that he loved her and wanted to be with her.
I am speechless.
3. Be ready to answer 3 opening questions
The au pair program somehow causes them to think similarly and ask the same questions. It is like a group of people who support the same team. They think and act the same.
Here are the 3 most common questions I get from au pairs:
- How old are you?
- What do you do?
- How long have you been here?
The order of these questions is very important. If she is not satisfied with an answer, she won’t move on to the next question. I think they are going through some kind of logical process and doing some calculations while they ask these questions and get answers to them.
4. Be ready to pay for the dates
(Skip this section if you are Richie Rich)
There is a reason why they call themselves “au poor” 🙂
Au pairs in the US make about $200 per week ($195.75 to be more specific). Even though they don’t pay for rent and food, it’s still not a lot of money to survive on and have fun here in the US. This explains why they are very slow to grab their purses when it comes to paying the check at a restaurant.
Don’t hesitate to pay for the first date. However, you may want to share the bills on other dates if you don’t want to feel used…
Once she realizes that you are not willing to pay the full check, she will start insisting on eating at Subway or Panera Bread 🙂
5. Be ready to travel a LOT
They LOVE travelling! One of my au pair friends travelled to 32 states in 15 months! It’s unbelievable compared to the fact that I visited about 10 states in the last 5 years!
I can’t blame them. One of their main purposes of coming to the US is travelling. I never understand how they find money to travel that much though. I think they have a secret and mysterious source of income.
They have only 2 weeks of vacation per year. However, they are very skillful about having weekend getaways. Especially long weekends! It’s hard to see au pair friends around on a long weekend (the 4th of July weekend, Martin Luther King weekend, Christmas weekend etc.)
So if you start dating an au pair, start packing your luggage too!
(A new post about travelling with au pairs is COMING SOON!)
7. Be ready to party until 5am
If there is one thing they love more than travelling, it is PARTYING! They mostly stay at home with kids all week and save energy. When on Fridays and Saturdays they run away from their host families to bars/clubs and stay out until 5am.
This is one of the hardest parts of dating au pairs for me. I am done with clubbing around 1am even if it is my birthday or New Year’s Eve. However, au pairs don’t need a reason to celebrate! They also don’t like going home before breakfast time 🙂
8. Be ready to say goodbye 🙁
I saved the sad section for the end. Be ready to say goodbye 🙁 The au pair program lasts the maximum of 2 years. Once their program is over, they have a travel month. After their travel month, they go back to their countries.
I started meeting au pairs 4 years ago. Tens of them already left the country 🙁 It makes you absolutely upset, but there is good news in this sadness. You will have a place to stay all around the world!
Some au pairs keep staying here by changing their visa to F1 (student). I have au pair friends who have stayed here for over 2 years. I wish it was easier for all of them to stay here longer.
(A new post about changing J1 (au pair) visa to F1 (student) visa is COMING SOON!)
If you are an au pair, I want you to know that I will give you citizenship if I’m elected as president in 2020! VOTE FOR JACK in 2020!!!