Top 10: Communication Tips for Au Pairs

Effective communication with your Host Family is the key to a successful year:

  1.  If you don’t understand something your host family has said, tell them. They will be happy to help you. Nodding and saying yes if you don’t understand will only result in a problem later on.
  2. Sit down with your host family and review your responsibilities, schedule and house rules as soon as possible.  Make sure you understand them.
  3.  Sit down with your host family at the end of every week to review how the week went. This is the perfect time to evaluate how things are going and to decide if changes are necessary. 
  4. Speak up! If there is a problem, a concern, something you don’t understand, tell your host family about it immediately. 
  5. Talk to your community counselor.  Sometimes it’s helpful to have a neutral person to “bounce an idea off of.”  The counselor is here to help you as well as the host family. Everyone wants this to be a successful match. 
  6. Try to resolve conflicts as they arise.  TALK, TALK, TALK! No one will know you are upset if you don’t say something. 
  7. It is important to try to see the other person’s point of view. You may not agree with it, but it’s helpful to understand how the other person views the situation. 
  8. Don’t expect your HF to read your mind!  Speak up!  Don’t say, “The Host Family should know how I feel!” No one can know unless you SPEAK UP! 
  9. Do not keep your negative feelings to yourself.  No one will know what’s troubling you unless you SPEAK UP!! 
  10.  In Conclusion: Talk, Talk, Talk!!

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