Living with a Granny Aupair
Living with a Granny has been a very pleasant experience so far, however the main challenge could be in making sure that everyone is enjoying their privacy. On our first Granny experience, the Granny used to come to our private spaces like bedrooms and study rooms. Her intentions were good and it was her first Granny experience so we didn’t take it personally. But we noticed some cultural inconveniences and personal space discomfort on our side.
On the following Grannies’ visits, we started to explain - from the beginning- that the family needs its privacy to manage their personal interests and affairs. In return the Granny has free access to all the ground floor but not to our bedrooms and work areas. The ground floor includes the kitchen, the living room, TV, and access to patio and house yard. This proved to be a good organization of space and made everyone comfortable.
Cultural differences are not a myth , especially when it comes to cultural uniqueness related to women status for example across societies. The Grannies usually come with certain views of how women are treated in Arab and Muslim culture and it is very difficult to convince them that not all these views are real. With time our family realized that it is not easy to change their perspectives. Now we overlook negative views / comments and leave it to the Grannies to see the realities by themselves.
There are many happy experiences with our Grannies to be honest. An example is when we took one of our lovely Grannies to meet our great grandmother, and our grandmother gave her Burga (Battoulah) and asked her to try it . We took photos of the two as they were communicating with signs and laughs, it was really a happy moment and a warm human interaction.
We really appreciate our lovelyGgrannies and their help to improve our kids’ German language. We stay in touch with almost all of them. Some of them are so kind and generous that they post gifts for the kids. The Granny experience is not only a cultural encounter but a unique human encounter that is warm and full courageous exploration. We admire the courage in every lady who made the decision to be a Granny Aupair in a totally new culture from her own. Their courage keeps on impressing us!