For all sitters, nannies, and care providers, it’s been a trying few weeks in the country and around the world.

We know that there are so many unknowns right now, and everyone’s situation has become very different in such a short amount of time. Some of you may be continuing to work, helping families in need while taking tremendous precautions when it comes to hygiene. Others are now in a heartbreaking dilemma of being out of work. We understand that so many difficult decisions have had to be made, and will continue to be made in the upcoming weeks.

As care providers you know that your work is important, but it’s been a struggle to get society to see it that way. Often the work is not validated as important or essential. This is seen in many nanny and babysitting jobs that have unrealistic rate expectations and/or don’t offer sick leave and other job-related benefits that many conventional occupations provide.

We asked a member of our community what they thought the number one misconception of childcare was. Their answer:

That it can’t be a “real profession.” I went to school for six years and I’m choosing to be a nanny. Whenever I meet someone and they ask what I do and I tell them I’m a nanny they don’t seem impressed. I have to express my passion for it in order for someone to seem impressed.

How many of you have felt this same exact way?

Well, the tides may be slowing changing as many states who are ordering a shelter-in-place are deeming child care “essential services.” There are some families who cannot stay at home with their kids—and they need child care. Child care providers are a key function of our society. You provide the ability for others to get to work, you are a part of the network of necessary workers who are making the world go round right now. Having the government recognize this, and in return being a part of this network makes you essential as well. This is something that every care provider can be proud of. Holding it together for the children you care for, all while trying to hold it together for yourself, your own family, and your circle of loved ones.

Stay Connected

If you’re not working right now, know that everyone wishes it wasn’t this way. We all know that providing child care is way more than a job—it’s being a part of a family. We all hope that once things get better, you can resume working as normal. Keeping communication open with the families that you work for is super important. Think about possibly just saying “hi” remotely, or offering to “watch the kids” (paid or unpaid, whatever you feel most comfortable with) by reading them a story, or cooking dinner together from afar. Everyone will be in need of connection right now.

Invest in Yourself

Take this time to reflect. By no means does anyone expect lofty life-changing self-discovery to happen, but it’s a moment in time in which you might have some extra time on your hands. Thinking about ways to help your career while in an in-between time of life can be refreshing. In the coming weeks, Sittercity will be providing our community with content to support you in developing professionally. Let us know what kind of content you’re interested in seeing by filling out this form so we can tailor it to our sitter community!

We’re a Strong Community

Continue to be kind and supportive to those around you. It’s important to keep in mind that everyone is trying to do their best. There’s no roadmap to this. But one thing we know for sure is that we will come out the other side stronger together.

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