No Nanny in the Romijn-O’Connell Household
It is easy to assume that the rich and famous of Hollywood have a nanny at their beck and call to handle all of the unsavory tasks of caring for children. When you have money and are often on location for TV shows or movies, having a nanny just makes sense. That is not the case in the Romijn-O’Connell household. In a recent interview with Redbook Rebecca Romijn talked about why they don’t have nannies for the couple’s two daughters Charlie and Dolly. She says, “We’re each other’s assistants. We pick up each other’s slack. Whoever is less busy helps the busier one: ‘Can you go pick up this for me?’ or ‘Can you book my flight?’ That’s what real life is. Once you start paying somebody else to do the grunt work, who are you?”
We’re each other’s assistants. We pick up each other’s slack. Whoever is less busy helps the busier one: ‘Can you go pick up this for me?’ or ‘Can you book my flight?’ That’s what real life is.
While I often fantasize about a nanny when I am busy working a full-time job, completing my freelance work, and schlepping kids to camp, daycare, and dance class, I agree with Romijn. When you start paying someone else to handle something you can handle yourself I think you lose the ability fulfill your role as a parent. Now I am not talking about the necessary babysitter for a night out or a nanny who watches your child while you work, but when you are capable of taking care of your child and you farm them out to someone else I think that is a problem. My husband and I both work full-time now but when I was part-time, if one of us was at work, the other parent was at home.
Romijn also talks about how hard it is to give up control when her husband Jerry O’Connell is on parenting duty. She says she has moments where giving up control of what the girls wear, do, and eat is difficult but she has learned that even though the parenting style is different it is okay. She says, “It’s hard for me to not make suggestions when I’m not on duty. For example, 10 days ago when he was bringing the girls up to Vancouver, I was like, ‘Oh, God, he cannot forget their jackets. I have to remember to tell him to bring rain boots.’ Then I told myself: ‘He knows what the weather is like in Vancouver.’ Meanwhile, he showed up with one pair of shoes each, two pairs of pants, two T-shirts, a sweatshirt and no jacket! This was my worst fear and we were … fine.”
I think all mothers struggle with the relinquishment of control; I know I do. When my husband is in charge it is hard for me to let him parent the way he wants, a style vastly different than mine, but as time has gone on I realize that at the end of the day, the house is still standing and no one got hurt, so that is the best we can hope for.
Would you hire a nanny if you could?
Image via PR Photos