Night time nanny

Night time nanny: What questions should parents ask before hiring one?

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Some new parents do see the benefit of a night time nanny, whether it’s their first child or their fifth.

The more tangible benefits include:

  • Peace of mind
  • A “thought partner” in some aspects of raising your child
  • Better sleep
  • More energy for the crucial, memorable moments

Even though these benefits do tangibly exist, some parents are still reluctant to hire a night time nanny. In those situations, the reasons are usually along these lines:

  • Don’t want someone else taking care of my child at night
  • Concerns over cost
  • Does this mean I’m a bad mother?
  • Shouldn’t we do the full experience, even the sleepless nights?

When we talk to prospective clients about our night time nanny services, there are usually two extremes and then a host of positions in the middle. The extremes would be:

  • “That seems something for rich/well-off people, so I’ll pass.”
  • “I absolutely need this OMG can you please start tomorrow?”

That’s three different bullet point lists, culminating in two positions that new parents tend to take. If you’re in the camp where you might maybe could possibly¬†see hiring a night time nanny, now let’s address what questions you need to ask your candidates.

Night time nanny questions 

This list is based on questions we’ve been asked, seen, or would ask as mothers ourselves. A few choices:

  1. What is your experience/background? [crucial]
  2. Do you have references or other clients we can talk to?
  3. Logistically, how does your process look? When do you arrive, and what happens then? When do you leave?
  4. What “services” or functions are you doing for the newborn in that time window?
  5. What should be our role in the house during that time?
  6. How long have you been doing this or active in infant/newborn care?
  7. What’s the collaboration relationship between you and the parents look like? Are there certain things we handle?
  8. How many nights a week is commonplace?
  9. What does this all cost?
  10. Are there different or special packages?

If you go with those 10 questions to start, usually you’ll find the right night time nanny. You’ll know their background, how the relationship works, the logistics, and the cost. These are of varying degrees of importance to different families we’ve encountered. Some get very hung up on cost — which is understandable — and some get very focused on the logistics of who does what in terms of night time nanny vs. the parents. (And yes, we’ve even had couples ask us if it’s weird if they have sex while we’re there. No questions off the table!)

Anything else you’d want to know from a night time nanny?

Kristin Smith

Kristin is a wife, mom, doula and a kick ass swaddler. She spends her time helping families get top notch support throughout their parenting journey. When she isn't swaddling babies, she can be found sipping latte's and watching her daughter play softball. Read more...

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