Find out why a manny may serve your needs.
By Daniel Butcher
“A manny? As in, a male nanny? Oh! That’s great!”
I’ve been met with this response almost 100% of the time when parents ask (erroneously I should add), how old my kids are. It’s truthfully a testament to my abilities I’d like to think, that the children I care for show a level of comfort with me that would lead someone to assume I was their father, instead of their hired caregiver.
But as it turns out, I was the manny, and it was due to an extensive childcare background that it has become a very natural role for me to grow into. It really took off when I moved from a small town in the UK to Los Angeles. After establishing myself in this city, I became sought after by some pretty high profile parents for my services. When I would look around during gymnastics, playgroups, or birthday parties, I couldn’t help but feel outnumbered by my female counterparts. As colleagues go, I have worked alongside female nannies almost exclusively – all of whom have always warmly welcomed me into “their” world, and appreciated the shift in dynamic that I (as a man) bring to the table. Their charges as well were consistently thrilled that a man was there to look after them who could ALSO be engaging, nurturing, and disciplinary if needed.
So the question is this: In Los Angeles, a city populated by nearly 4 million diverse, and open minded residents, where kids can take trapeze classes, followed by courses in minecraft, coding, parkour exercise, and even meditation – why has Los Angeles yet to fully embrace the manny?
Traditional gender roles have become outdated. A rise in technology and the overall pace we are living at, has pulled the rug out from the typical family life that once consisted of two kids, one dog, working father, and stay at home mom.
Moms are breadwinners. Dad’s stay at home. Maybe both parents work from home. Perhaps one parent travels extensively, and one works remotely. The different dynamics not only run the gamut, but they’re unlike they’ve ever been before. This crushing of gender stereotypes has trickled down to childcare as parents have more of an open mind, and want to pass that sort of free thinking onto their children, as if to say (without saying), “Your gender does not dictate who you are, what you do, nor where you belong.” It’s quite amazing to witness really.
As a male nanny, I’ve been discounted for a number of jobs based on my sex – but I expect that to change in a short amount of time based on trends around the world. In London, a new mobile babysitting app Bubble say the number of men signing up to look after children has almost doubled since the service launched in the summer.
So what’s the advantage to a manny? The aspects that a man brings to this role are only “unique” because they are not the norm. If a family feels that their children are lacking a strong, stable male influence in their lives, then a male nanny is a great addition to the home! It’s all about achieving that balance. A manny is also fantastic if the parents feel a male may bring a higher degree of physical engagement.
Who better to entertain and engage boys than another guy! What’s most special about a lot of mannies out there is that the domestic aspect of the position is also covered as well: the cooking, cleaning, washing and folding; it’s the full package.
Daniel Butcher, known as Danny the Manny, decided to take his philosophy, along with a crew of likeminded and highly experienced guys, to start Angeles Mannies. His staffing agency places mannies, nannies, personal assistants, housekeepers and more. Daniel lives in LA with his partner, and one eyed rescue pup from Ecuador.