Move over Mary Poppins. The 'manny' (male nanny) has arrived!
New statistics from Childcare.co.uk has revealed that more men are entering into the world of childcare with male childcare providers doubling in numbers since 2009. Celebrities are also turning to male nannies for support; with the likes of Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel reportedly recently hiring a 'manny.'
So could a male nanny be for you? Parenting expert Jo Wiltshire explains her top 5 reasons why you should put aside any bias and hire a manny.
It breaks down gender biases
It's important that children see both men and women in a caring role; it gives them perspective, says Jo. Hiring only female care givers could imply that only women can be nurturing. Men are equally loving and capable; hiring a manny helps to breakdown the stereotype
It can give your kids a valuable male role model
It's not just single mums who need a 'manny' to provide their kids with a good male role model; many families with two parents also see the benefit of an extra trusted male figure in their children's lives. The child gets the opportunity to form a big brother type of relationship with their care giver Â– someone they, look up to and feel protected by.
They offer different experiences
I'm not saying that female nannies
don't enjoy activities there are rough and tumble or require getting muddy but men are often happier in this type of setting, says Jo. Lots of men are happy to climb trees or kick a ball around which no doubt appeals to more energetic and boisterous kids. Most men are also not afraid of a bit of mud Â– that's perfect for kids who love being outdoors.
They can help if your child is less abled
Mannies can be a great asset if your children are disabled or need extra physical support. Men tend to be stronger which means if a child is less physically abled, mannies can lift a child more easily and safely. Knowing your child is in a strong pair of safe hands when you are at work or out for day really helps putting parents' minds at ease.
It encourages other men into the childcare profession
What a better way to encourage more men into the profession then hiring a manny yourself. Until recently childcare was seen as a female profession comments Jo, but with more men going into childcare this is starting to shift. Seeing more and more men becoming mannies hopefully will give guys considering the profession the confidence to take that leap. It's about the person their skills, how they fit with your ideals and your requirements Â– it shouldn't be anything to do with gender.