And who better to do this than the new age nanny? One who has created a huge network of equally well connected nannies, has the cache the families crave, and has facility with social media to connect with similarly situated nanny friends to make things happen before the child has taken her first step. This special new breed has taken networking to a whole new level. Good for them!
The only sad part is that there are parents who actually pay for this kind of “care.” And they pay big bucks—some of these new age nannies make more than $200,000 plus perks every year.
I am not making this up. Adam Davidson, in an article written for the NY Times Magazine , describes the new criteria being touted by the wealthiest among us.
- Nannies who can drive boats or grooms horses do very well.
- Great looking “knockout” nannies who don’t make you ashamed when they are with your children at an event.
- Nannies that make everything fun by learning how to mime, sing or dance.
- And my favorite, nannies who are chosen by the child because he feels her “sensitivity.”
The featured “celebrity” nanny from Brazil has been quite successful. She has acquired her own Manhattan apartment, a separate real estate empire, homes in Argentina and South Florida, for herself and her family. Taxis for her brothers to make their own living in Sao Paulo. A true rags to riches immigrant story. She only had to find the audience and completely give her life to another family.
In return she has traveled the world on private jets and has rubbed elbows with the elite of the elite. Her connections have become valuable commodities for would-be employers who are increasingly nervous about their own abilities to give their children what they think they need to succeed. Why are parents so insecure?
Obviously that is the million (or with inflation, billion) dollar question. What do children need to succeed today? Here’s my list. An education, a stable home with loving relationships, a community that cares. Opportunities to succeed, opportunities to fail. Role models and cheerleaders. A warm smile and a lap to lay their head on when they are tired or sad. Chores and limits, times to shine and time to serve. And not too much more.
For the last 29 plus years we have had only three nannies for our children—home-helpers to help us care for our home and our children so we could also enjoy our demanding careers. Without Pam, Aline and Sonia we could never have done it. All became part of our family. And the ease in which this occurred was our measure of their success. Not earth shattering, not sexy, and not bizarre. Nothing that would be remotely “news worthy” for the NY Times, eh?