Episode 1: What's In A Name?

Real Talk: The Good, The Bad & The Crazy

Parents discuss the difference between "nanny" versus "babysitter." Full-time caregivers weigh in on how they would like to be addressed.

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Comments (16)
Michelle P.
Im a profeesional care taker with kids who has special needs
Posted: June 14, 2012 at 9:18 AM
Photo of Kendall H.
Kendall H.
I have been nannying for about 2 years now, and personally hate being called a babysitter. Although it's not such a big deal, I always feel discredited when people refer to me as a babysitter. I imagine a babysitter to be someone who watches movies with a few kids and then puts them to sleep at night, and proceeds to watch TV until the parents get home. Don't get me wrong, I do have occasional babysitting jobs for during the weekends where I get away with doing that; but I, as a nanny, work harder than most people I know, and take my job very seriously.
Posted: June 11, 2012 at 3:50 PM
Photo of Halyna K.
Halyna K.
Nice video..
I love when "my" kids call me nanny,and they always do.
Over years I straterted refering to myself as a nanny, because I'm a nanny,and I'm proud to be a nanny ! LOL
Posted: July 05, 2011 at 11:21 AM
Photo of Dominique L.
Dominique L.
I am a professional child care provider...
Posted: June 24, 2011 at 4:43 AM
Cassandra H.
Children begin to babysit at home younger siblings and the requirements are simple which develops the mindset of responsibility that is expected when caring for others. I believe Nanny's, experienced individuals who have the qualities of a licensed provider minus the education requirement, nutritious food program benefit and facility and space being provided for care. The expectations of Nanny is to do basically replace the parent within the home when the BO parent is unavailable. Although difficult it can benefit those who want to have a career without the additional legal responsibilities that licensed providers have to complete. Since caring for children requires both hands on experience and knowledge no matter what the title any thing done extra to enhance your ability to adjust to situations and solutions to the work you're doing makes the your title irrelevant and your work the highlight. I believe one would be called Royalty because caring for kids requires that mindset!
Posted: June 23, 2011 at 10:00 AM
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Laura A.
I had a family who started out with the mother referring to me as "the babysitter" while I wasnt there and I think he did this because she wanted to set up a culture of disrespect for me from her children, as rarely any babysitters have "lasted " with her 3 little girls. However, I evolved soon into more than "the babysitter, especially to the kids, they bonded with me like I am their mother, I taught them values and character, and they would listen to me even when their parents were around, like I was equivalent to a parent. The 3 year old who was a "cry baby" and misbehaved, hit, etc, would not be diciplined very well for these actions, but what this child actually wanted was to be shown how to act, and I would put her in time out and be very firm with her when these actions arose, she came to respect me and "love" me soon calling me mama at times and when tired, not wanting her mother, but wanting to hold on to me, and when she was sad and I was gone, her sisters told me she would go outside and cry my name crying and sobbing for me. Hearing that broke my heart. I would have adopted her on the spot, except I dont know if that would be the best thing for her, I helped her mom get services for speach for her and helped the family get along better. I think the mom kind of resented me in a way at the end, like I cant believe you are too good to be true, and then she was kinda shutting me out in a way, except the girls wouldnt let her do that, I knew they always asked aobut me, and talked about me alot.....I was called back, and I jsut wanted to handout with the kids, we had had so much fun that summer!
Posted: June 19, 2011 at 9:14 AM
Photo of Rose R.
Rose R.
Iam proud to be called a Nanny.a nanny is much more than a baby sitter.
a baby sitter has much less responsibility than a nanny'their duty is more like
watching the baby for a specified period of time.Where as ananny has the
complete care of the baby,child or children in her/his portfolure.Nuturing
preparing meals giveing baths,aranging activites. cleaning,teaching proper conduct,and right behavour,how to share and interract with their sibblings

or with others in general how to be kind and thoughtful others feeling
how to develop into good little people,I think a nanny is like a second
mother to the children she watches at least that'S HOW i AM CONSIDERD by
the families i work with i believe ananny has a lasting influence
on the child"supbringing especially the younger child There is definate
bond between a child and his/her Nanny,It"s like the child is yours.
and is aspecial part of your life call me Nanny any day I love the chrildren
that I Nanned and ikeep in touch with most of them
Rose
Posted: May 22, 2011 at 4:57 PM
Rhonda B.
What a great video, and some really great discussion. I agree that there is a difference between the two terms. I expect a babysitter to keep my kids alive and out of trouble for a few hours. I like to think of a nanny as a professional partner in raising my children, and would obviously take on a more important and more permanent roll in our family.

Thank all of you childcare professionals! Without you, I would not be able to concentrate on my own job, or enjoy date nights with my husband.
Posted: April 28, 2011 at 12:38 AM
Photo of Todd W.
Todd W.
I'm a male nanny, so the whole "what to call the person" gets infinitely more confusing and interesting in my case. Some people find it really amusing to refer to me as the "nanny," and others whisper it like it's an insult they really can't quite put their finger on (my guess it that "nanny" is more often than not identified as a gender-specific term, not an inclusive one, much like "nurse"). I really don't care for the trendy-yet-ridiculous sounding "Manny," because it feels oddly demeaning in a way I can't pinpoint--like my skills and talents and abilities are a joke, or something out of a kooky movie. If I'm picking up one of the kids I take care of from school or something, I'll say, "Hi, I'm the nanny. Call me Todd," and then it's just "There's Todd" from there on out. Pretty simple!

And one thing I do know is that I'm NOT a babysitter! :)
Posted: April 26, 2011 at 3:40 AM
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Candace G.
I love the video and I love what I do even more. I prefer the term care giver because that is what i provide.
Posted: March 08, 2011 at 2:58 PM
Photo of Jessica K.
Jessica K.
Courtney B. I completely agree. A lot of my friends have said "Oh wow watching kids all day... I'll trade jobs with you anytime." I usually say "OK lets go for it I will go work at McDonald's for the day you take care of the 4 kids I do everyday. You get them to school on time and hep them with there homework. You make sure they are doing something constructive to keep themselves occupied, or better yet you come up with something that will entertain all of them for more then 10 minutes. I would love to see you fix there meals and put them to sleep. But don't forget once there are asleep, good luck by the way, you have to clean the house, get everything for tomorrow ready, do the laundry and so on." You are not alone when it comes to that kind of feeling, people do not understand. Our jobs are the most important, we are responsible for helping raise a child. We have there lives in our hands most of the time. And some people truly do think of us as "glorified babysitters" who do nothing but sit there and watch TV.
Posted: March 06, 2011 at 1:58 PM
Kimberly F.
This very topic was recently cause for heated debate between me and an acquaintance, when the subject of my employment was brought up: He quite callously stated that the terms were at best "interchangeable", and at worst, that 'Nanny' was just a "fancy term" for "glorified babysitter". I vigorously contested that Nannies (as defined by Webster's) are CUSTODIANS of their charges, with: 1) far deeper and broader responsibilities, 2)bond with the families, and 3) the view of their position as a PROFESSIONAL (Often expert) CAREER which commands more in terms of compensation. I am PROUDLY a Nanny, period, end of story. Interestingly enough, the parents I work WITH (Not FOR)resoundingly agreed with my position on the matter. Excellent video, thank you!!
Posted: March 05, 2011 at 11:35 AM
Photo of Courtney B.
Courtney B.
I love this video. Whenever I saw I'm going to work, some people say "Oh your have to baby sit". And I take if offensively, because I am not going to "baby sit". Baby sitters do not clean, cook, prepare art projects, teach, or take children on errands, nor does a baby sitter make enough money to pay bills. I think of myself as an in home teacher. (:
Posted: February 28, 2011 at 6:22 PM
Photo of Martina W.
Martina W.
I think that there is a difference even between the terms child care provider, nanny and babysitter. In my veiw a nanny would be someone who regularly goes to the child's house and takes care of them there and is more of an employee where the the hiring party should be responsible for taxes. A child care provider is someone who provides the care in their own home or facility and is considered "self-empoyed" and s responsible for paying their own income taxes etc. and a babysitter is someone who comes in and provides care in the childs home during the evening hours for only a few hours at a time. Thats just my take on it.
Posted: February 28, 2011 at 3:44 PM
Photo of Christina B.
Christina B.
I prefer the term Nanny over babysitter, but it is easier to say, "I'm going babysitting" than "I'm nannying" (is that even a word?). I suppose I could just say, "I'm going to work" and if people ask what my job is I can tell them, "I'm a nanny".
Posted: February 26, 2011 at 10:58 AM
Photo of Anne R.
Anne R.
Awesome Video - You should have this for all of your providers (housekeeping). Just like the last comment that was made - WE TAKE PRIDE IN WHAT WE DO. It's fulfilling to know that you are helping someone and making a difference in their life. Keep them coming.
Posted: February 26, 2011 at 9:17 AM
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