Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Is a NannyMan Trouble?

Here's a question:

Would you let a man watch your baby?

Would it make a difference if he was related to you?

Would it make a difference if your baby was a boy or girl?

How about if your child was a toddler? Grade Schooler?

All day vs. a few hours?

I've been really struggling with this. With respect to equality of the sexes, I shouldn't have a problem with it, right? We, as women, have been struggling with the "glass ceiling," equal pay, and sexist remarks in the workplace, but when it comes to a man watching my baby, I get a little squeamish.

Since my mom had her knee replaced, we've been having my niece's boyfriend (29 yrs old), watch Lady Bug once a week. He's a waiter (not terribly motivated in life), and needs some extra money with the economy hitting his industry pretty hard right now.

He loves kids...wants to get married and have a truckload. Has made it clear to my niece that he'd love to be a stay-at-home dad. He is very sweet with LadyBug...but I always wonder if he's a little *too* sweet. Every week when I leave her with him, I get a little anxious and can't wait to get back home. She always seems happy and content when I return, and happy to see him each week.

Am I obsessing and not being fair?


Jen said...

I don't really have any biases when it comes to gender and watching babies. I mean DH is home with Jillian all day. What I worry about more is how familiar the person is with babies. I would trust some of DH's guy friends who have children around Jillian's age much more than I would a woman with no child care experience.

Mermaid said...

I can honestly say I wouldn't do it. Probably unfair, but still, not my daughter (or my son).

I don't want to add to your anxiety, though. I'm overly paranoid. I'd say your daughter's pleasure at seeing him should indicate he's an upstanding sitter.

Anonymous said...

Hmm...I would be indifferent and only base a decision like that on what my instincts were telling me. If you feel anxious when leaving her with him, I would not leave her with him. Simple.

Wade and Ericka said...

I would *never* EVER let a man be my kid's nanny, and it doesn't matter to me if they're related or what sex my child was. This is probably based on what I do for a living - email me if you want details, but trust me, find a woman.

Willow said...

I wouldn't base it on male or female (my 20-year-old brother-in-law is our primary babysitter, besides DH and me!), but if you feel uncomfortable for any reason, even if you can't put your finger on why, I would probably trust your instincts.

areyoukiddingme said...

I have had a hard time with this too - my daughter's daycare teacher is a guy in his 20's. I don't know if it's the news stories or the fact that I expect guys in their 20's to have different wants and needs, but there is just something off to me. That said, my girl's teacher is great, and just the right person to handle a bunch of rambunctious 3 yr olds, who are mostly boys.

I guess you should try to figure out if it's your mommy instincts or just discomfort with a non-stereotypical situation.

Martha said...

Men can be just as nuturing as women, you have to trust your instincts. Take care, send my best.