Guest Blog: The Effects of COVID-19 on Nannies and the Family Dynamic

It’s been more than a year since COVID-19 forced the world into isolation, and everyone is feeling the effects—both mentally and physically.

Many families are struggling to maintain some semblance of “normal” life while juggling work, childcare, schoolwork, homework, extracurricular activities, and more. While restrictions are slowly easing in King County, a large portion of the population remains part of the remote workforce, which brings a larger set of challenges.

If you’re feeling the pressure of near-constant isolation, you’re not alone. Most everyone is ready for relief from the pandemic, and stress levels are at an all-time high.

Your nanny isn’t an exception.

We sometimes hear feedback from parents who struggle to understand a shift in their nanny’s behavior or personality. Why is my nanny not as friendly and open now that I’m working from home? Why does my nanny seem short-tempered with the children?

Honestly, your nanny is probably burned out.

When families are constantly interacting and there’s no separation of work life and home life, frustrations are only natural. As humans, we need the disconnect between our home and our workplace. The pandemic has completely altered how we interact with each other, and your nanny is probably feeling these effects, too.

Westside Nannies recently published an article highlighting the mental load of nannies throughout the past year. The writer offers insight and solutions that may help any family who’s noticed a shift in the family dynamic, especially between the nanny and other members of the household.

For this article, they interviewed nannies and their employers to find the crux of the issue and address the situation. Many nannies said they felt like they were living “under a microscope.” Families are more demanding, and nannies sometimes feel like they’re working harder than ever but still often criticized.

We urge families to read the article and try to find a solution that benefits everyone. At the least, review Seattle’s Domestic Workers Ordinance and ensure you’re following guidelines that help give your nanny a mental and physical break from the daily workload of childcare and household management.

We’re all in this together. That’s especially true for families, particularly ones who work with a nanny. The overlap between work and family sometimes blurs the line between employer and family member, but it’s important that nannies have a bit of separation from their work when time allows.

Consider reading the Westside Nannies post, “Your Nanny Is Struggling: How to Help.” It may offer some clarity and guidance that helps your family work through this transition period together.

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