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"AuPairMom" - 5 new articles

  1. Everything I know about DISC for Selecting Au Pairs — guest post by Should Be Working
  2. Open Thread: In like a polar bear…
  3. What if an Au Pair Doesn’t Want To Take Antibiotics– and we’re all sick!
  4. Our Au Pair Was Unhappy. Everyone Knew But Us.
  5. Au Pair’s Dr. Host Dad insisting she receive Vitamin B shots? No. No. No.
  6. Search AuPairMom
  7. Prior Mailing Archive

Everything I know about DISC for Selecting Au Pairs — guest post by Should Be Working

The always-helpful ShouldBeWorking has offered us her practical wisdom on so many occasions — and now she’s up to it again.

This time, she’s put together ALL her advice about how to use the DISC profile tool for understanding potential au pair candidates.

Not every Au Pair Agency uses the DISC profile, but for host families that have access to this tool, it’s one of the very few ‘nearly objective’ selection tools in our kit.

For more details on the DISC profile, see this article from a site that sells the tool.   6586274421_981b42df67_m

Dear Host Parents-–  We’re all looking for the silver bullet — the tool, question, or insight that helps us select an Au Pair who’ll have a great fit with our family’s personality. While I wish there were such a tool, the closest thing I’ve found is the DISC profile.  Below, I tell you everything I know.

Before you read on, however, I recommend taking the test yourself to help you understand it better. If you are going to take this test, which I recommend, take the test BEFORE you read all about it. Otherwise you will think too much and second-guess yourself!! Look for “Classic DISC” for about $35 dollars and do it online.

Disclaimer: I’m just a host mom with 3 kids, I have no qualifications in psychology or HR or management. What I can offer is my own research, interpretation and experience of the DISC test and how it relates to au pairs. YMMV. I might misunderstand many aspects of...

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Open Thread: In like a polar bear…

When the temperature on Feb. 27th is 14 degrees, no lions are coming over. Instead, polar bears.
Here’s a weekend open thread to help us glide from February to March.

Use this thread to bring up anything at all that’s on your Host Parent or Au Pair agenda.

Keep in mind that first time commenters might see a lag between hitting and seeing their comments on the blog, since first time comments must be approved by hand.
Also, if a topic comes up and then disappears, I may have snagged it for a post later this week.
As always, please follow the comments policy and be kind.

     

What if an Au Pair Doesn’t Want To Take Antibiotics– and we’re all sick!

HostMomX raised this concern in the comments on the post about Dr. Host Dad and his Vitamin B injections:

au pair, au pair health concernsThis situation brings up a related issue that HD and I have wondered about. We have had several APs tell us that they are very anti antibiotic, and won’t take them.

I understand that attitude – I know a lot of people who feel that way, and for good reason. And I agree with those reasons – we are way too antibiotic dependent here, and the ill-effects of that have been well-documented.

Luckily these have been fairly hearty APs who have luckily not come down with any illnesses that would seem to have required antibiotics while they were with us – despite being slobbered on non-stop by our constantly-sick young children. So we never had to actually deal with the situation.

But we wondered – if the whole family comes down with some bacterial infection, say, strep throat, that knocks you out of commission with fever and related symptoms for quite some time if you don’t treat it with antibiotics, and we all get on antibiotics right away and get back in the saddle, but the AP refuses to take antibiotics and therefore can’t work for a week or more (and is also still contagious and could re-infect the family), what is the solution?

As illustrated by the horrendous-sounding situation with the Vitamin B shots (and our flu shot conversations ~ cv) , you can’t force someone to take medicine they don’t want to...

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Our Au Pair Was Unhappy. Everyone Knew But Us.

Dear Au Pair Mom –

I have just discovered that our first au pair, who departed three months ago after a year working and traveling with us, told *everyone* but me that she was unhappy with our family.

5766506970_64806a7180_mWe though she was the greatest au pair: hard worker, experienced with the kids, wise…  She seemed very reasonable, honest and connected to the au pair community. 

We did all that we could to make her situation good and our relationship strong:

  • We had regular feedback sessions, probably every month, to 1) congratulate her on her great work with the kids and 2) give her the opportunity to give us feedback.
  • We built our handbook of proceduresm tules and expectations though conversation with her. We wanted to make sure everything was fair and clear. We were  constantly asking for her input to set the standards for the our future au pairs . 

  • She tracked her own hours and we paid her without question. We believe that she was paid for any hours she felt she worked.
  • We were very generous with pay and an au pair car. She was able to travle all over the world with us. She was able to request (and get) extra time off.

Some might describe our situation as cushy and see our au pairs as spoiled — small hkids are hard workm but travel and extra time off seemed to be big bonuses to balance this out.

  • She always told us work conditions were great. When we asked her for feedback on what we could do to help her adjust to the USA, she never had...

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Au Pair’s Dr. Host Dad insisting she receive Vitamin B shots? No. No. No.

This particular pair of host parents wins the prize for “Most Invasive Expectations”.

I received an email from an au pair currently working in Europe. She writes:injection-and-apple

Hi AuPairMom– I don’t know any other au pairs and so I’m hoping to get some advice from you on this difficult situation.

I have been living with a very affluent European family for almost 5 months. There have been a few bumps in the road but overall they are very nice people and the kids are awesome.

A few things have happened the last week that I am concerned about but am not sure what to do about them.

The more pressing concern is that the host father is a doctor. When I first got here he made me take blood tests to look at my vitamin levels. I didn’t really want to but it didn’t feel like an option.

I have not stopped being sick in some way since living in here in (northern Europe), cold after cold and the flu a couple of times and a really bad stomach bug.

My host father has been giving me b12 injections. I really didn’t want to take the needles but he really pressured me into it and it didn’t feel like an option.  

Now he wants me to take all these vitamin supplements (some I don’t even understand what they are).

My own parents don’t believe that I should be taking these supplements and they are concerned about Dr. Host Dad’s views on allergies. (I have anaphylactic allergies to a few things and Dr. Host Dad seems to...

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