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Au pair stories | Rico: ’They respect me just the way I am’

by It's a nory story
Photo: Rico Baumgardt
Living your life as au pair in America is for everyone different. For some people it is amazing and for others it is much harder. If you’re considering of becoming an au pair you might want to know how it is to be an au pair. Thats why I decided to interview au pairs and ask them about their experience. This week I interviewed Rico from Germany. He is an au pair in Washington State and takes care of two kids. He is fresh and new to the program because he has only been here for four months, but he can already tell about all the things he has seen here.

I’m Rico, 20 years old and I’m from Germany. Before I came to the US I did an apprenticeship in industrial management which enabled me to live on my own in Berlin. I arrived in Seattle during the snowpocolipse on February 8th 2019. Now, I’m taking care of two kids. My girl is 3 years old and my little boy turns one year in may.

Why did you became an au pair?

The reason why I became an Aupair is that I wanted to take a break from live. I felt extremely stressed out with all the things in Germany. That made me feel like I wasn’t ready to start working the rest of my live. I also wasn’t really sure what I wanted to in my future. So, I hope I will get to know myself better during this year.

What do you like most about your host family?

I love everything about my host family. They are very kind and respecting me just the way I am. They are also very flexible and loving with everyone in the house. In addition to that, they are seeing me as an equal authority for the kids. They are supportive with my decisions and make all my travel plans happen. 

What is the biggest struggle you’ve had so far?

The biggest struggle for me was surviving the training school in New York. That place totally grossed me out. After I took the first shower there I got a very itchy rash all over my body. Also, we couldn’t turn off the heating so the air was bad which caused me a huge head ache.

What is your favorite part of America?

I love that the people in the Seattle area are so friendly and polite. I feel like all the people just have different ways of thinking which makes everything easier. For example one time I was walking with my host kid and a woman I never saw before stopped me because she wanted to tell me that she really liked my pants. So sweet!

And what are you still not used too?

Im still not used to getting free water everywhere. In Germany you have to pay for every sip of water you’re drinking.

What was your favorite trip?

I just went on one trip so far. So I Can’t tell which one is my favorite.

Which app is fundamental for an au pair?

I don’t really know which app is fundamental for Au Pairs. There are so many apps for different purposes. For example, I like using a lot of different apps for finding flights to somewhere  and compare all those. Hopper and Skyscanner are some good apps for that.

What are you going to do when you get back home?

When I’m back home I will probably start studying Marketing in Berlin. I’m looking forward to move in with my boyfriend.

What is your ultimate tip for future and current au pairs?

It’s very important to be open for everything! You’re gonna see a lot of different and interesting things. You don’t need to go with your host parents opinions for example but you should be able to listen to them and to accept that their opinion might differ from yours. 

Find Rico on Instagram: @ricousio

Previous au pair stories

Saskia: ‘Nobody here will judge you’

Daniela: “They will always be my heroes”

Eva: ‘I felt a little bit stuck in my small hometown’I

Caterina: ‘Don’t think about it! Just Jump in it!’

Valisha: ‘I made the decision a few months before I left’

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