Au pair in Germany
Become an au pair in Germany

Explore Germany, learn a new language, make international friends and see a whole new world through the eyes of your German children.

 
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Au pair Kaitlyn’s experiences in Germany

Kaitlyn's au pair experiences in Germany

Kaitlyn from the US, au pair in the Berlin in 2010/2011

So you want to be an au pair? If you are anything like I was in your position, you have an endless bank of questions you are itching to have answers for. In the end, your experience will be completely unique from mine, but I can paint you a little picture of my story thus far.

Let’s rewind to a little more than a year ago when I was fast approaching the completion of my undergraduate degree, and like most soon-to-be graduates, had no idea what I wanted to do with myself. I knew what I didn’t want. I didn’t want a long-term career, I didn’t want a pointless job in which I hated going to everyday, and I didn’t want to move back home. So I started seeking out an adventure, searching the Internet for volunteer opportunities. This is when I discovered my opportunity becoming an au pair – the rest is history.

At first glance, the application process may seem daunting, but once I made my mind up that, “yes, this is what I want to do” the application seemed to complete itself. AYUSA made the process quick and painless and were (and still are) always available and willing to help. I was ‘matched’ with a family almost immediately. The mother and I emailed only a few times before we both decided that we are perfect for one another, we picked a date, a flight, and ‘poof’ I found myself in Germany.

If you have any doubts regarding whether or not this is for you, I encourage you to go for it. It will be a year you will never forget and if you are lucky like me, the year may turn in to something more. I have indeed fallen in love with my German family. Our family includes four children and a farm full of animals (it’s not as difficult as it may sound) – all of which of love and adore. I am not a mere au pair or employee for this family…I am family. The ‘job’ has ceased to be a job and is something I enjoy doing.

Like anything in life, there are ups and downs – how can there not be? Sometimes the hours are longer; sometimes they are shorter (we don’t really go by the whole 5 hours a day, 6 days a week contract – but that’s just what works best for us). Sometimes the children don’t want to listen; they can be stubborn, defiant, and tiring. Sometimes you may miss home (especially around Christmas time).

But on the flip side of the coin, more than just ‘sometimes’ you won’t be counting the hours but will instead be lost in the joy of this ‘job’. Like your own family, you are there for them when you are needed; there are no ‘hours’ with true family and loved ones – it becomes a give and take situation, one in which the family helps you and you help them. More than sometimes, and I’m confident in saying most of the time, the children are the sunshine of my day. I am an only child, or should I say I used to be an only child. I now feel like I have four younger German siblings. For every little moment of stress they create, they make up for it one thousand times in hugs, drawings, paintings, smiles, words, and love. I’ve remarked many times how enlightening the children are. Here I am, 23 years old and I’m being taught valuable life lessons from a 4, 7, 8, and 10 year old. I would do anything to help this family and know they would do the same for me.

Truly, this is the most valuable and rewarding decision I’ve made in my life. I can’t imagine not being here and as I’ve already mentioned, plan on staying another year – I can’t bare the thought of leaving my new family so soon. I wish you to proceed in this endeavor and do it with all your heart. There is a family out there waiting for you right now and it will surely change your life. Good luck and feel free to contact me via Ayusa with any further questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

Kaitlyn “Poppins” – as my host mom has dubbed me