Chicago dad's babysitter search: Are we an undesirable family?


 
 

By David Wallach

Member of the Chicago Parent Blog Network
 

DAD has returned back to work, which brings up 1,000 new issues in our house, from having to groom my ear hair to who is going to take care of the kids now that we are a “working family.”

 

Never really having a full time nanny, we tried several routes to find the perfect person who would love for and care for our kids while we were at work: friends, neighbors and even random people in the grocery store all had recommendations, but none of it panned out.

 

For the first few weeks we have been working half days, juggling three babysitters in a day and basically sweating it out. It hasn’t been good for WIFE and I, and not good for the kids as they go through this rough transition.

 

One of my colleagues, (cuz’ I have colleagues now and not just “daddy playgroups”) was telling me about an online service Sittercity.com, that is kind of like a Match.com for parents and nannies to connect. He used it and found a nanny fairly quickly, so I gave it a shot.

 

Very much like an online dating service you have to pay a monthly fee of about $35 and then build a profile that describes you, your family and what you are looking for in a nanny.

 

I personally think we have a pretty amazing family that is low maintenance and would be fun to work for, so as I finished up our profile, I was excited to see my inbox fill up with nannies eager to work with us.

 

To sweeten the pot, you can send emails to different nannies who fit your needs and wants as a family. They also have profiles with their credentials, references, certifications and more. Sittercity does a lot of the vetting for you, so you can get down to it.

 

Here’s where things went South. Not one of the nannies I sent an email to, responded. We did get about 12 emails from interested nannies, but when I followed up with a note only two took the time to get back to us and only one of them was truly worth talking to.

 

318 years ago, before I married WIFE and was single, I gave Match.com a try. Come to find out, I didn’t have the stomach for the anxiety that goes along with online dating: will she poke me back, why didn’t she write me back, will she look like her picture. It was way too much for me to deal with.

 

Now picture that rejection, anxiety and waiting when it comes to people looking at and judging your family! I’m at DEFCON 1 with anxiety as I constantly look at my Sittercity.com mail box to see if Tiffany who is a nurse, does laundry and knows CPR, will write us back or not?

 

As I sit up at night, waiting, always waiting, the thought creeps into my head: “Maybe we aren’t that great?” Maybe my awful neighbor down the street is right. Maybe we suck? I like us, but to other people and nannies, maybe we are an undesirable family.

 

Could it be possible that we are such a mess that we can’t find a nanny? Are we going to end up on the news as one of those couples who leaves their kids home alone with a pile of Alpo and enough water to make it through a conference call and PowerPoint deck?

 

Will our boys wander the street hugging random strangers asking, “Will you play freeze tag with me?” Only time will tell. Though, I am pretty sure Alpo is out since I can’t even get them to eat bologna.

 

Our search continues. If you know a nanny who is looking for a family, let us know.

 

As our profile says “We are looking for someone to continue to take care of them, nurture them, play with them and help them grow in a positive direction. We are a very active, fun-loving family who enjoy being outside and having fun.”

 

Though we may be undesirable, I love them and I am pretty proud of us.

 

 
 







 
 
 
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