You want the best birth control around? You want to never be tempted by sex, again? Become a fucking nanny.
Sure, the pill is effective. Clinically proven to prevent 99 percent of unwanted pregnancies. But the pill can’t give you a visual of what your world might be like with a child at this very exact moment in your life. The pill can’t Dutch oven you in the bathroom when you are trying to draw a bubble bath for that child. The pill can’t even eat its earwax in front of you at the dinner table. Repeatedly. And then throw a tantrum when you try to get it to eat just one bite of squash.
I’m 24, college educated. I have a savings account and like to think that I have some grasp on my future. But being a nanny for over a year now is the main reason why my sex life has come to a screeching halt.
See that unassuming 5-year-old playing with Legos in the corner? You know, the one that just painted a picture for you and said she loved you? Yeah, she’s about to flip a shit. Because she doesn’t want to fucking wear the red fucking skirt her mother asked you to dress her in for the fancy dinner party later tonight. The red skirt that looks ridiculously adorable paired with the grey Ralph Lauren button-down.
She doesn’t give a fuck what she looks like. She’s five.
The only thing she cares about at this very moment is making your life a living hell. When you are chasing a naked five- year-old in circles with a tiny red skirt in one hand and your sanity in the other, some might say you’ve hit rock bottom. Others might call it parenthood.
Instead of the child listening to your calm and rational reasoning behind the origin of the red fucking skirt and how she only has to wear it for two hours, tops which in the average span of childhood isn’t really that long of a time, she’s going to throw her five-year-old body onto the hardwood floor screaming how much she hates you. And she’s going to mean it. Her hatred glaring at you through her overly dramatic, tear stricken eyes, and you are going to have to deal with it.
That’s when you realize: You are this kid’s little bitch.
All of a sudden you will be re-evaluating every life choice you have ever made to get you to this very exact moment. Maybe a degree in media arts and design wasn’t the best way to spend your four (or more) years at college. Maybe your father was right, and moving to New York City without a “big kid” job was a big mistake. Or maybe, just maybe, if you cry louder than the five-year-old, your manic sobs will scare her into putting on the red fucking skirt and shut her the hell up!
You now have first-hand experience of what it’s like to be a mother. It’s not pretty. It’s frustrating, mentally debilitating, and smells slightly like stale farts. And these aren’t even the diaper years. You came in during the peak of this child’s cuteness.
And this a good child!
Lucky for you, you only have to deal with this for 20 to 40 hours a week. At the end of the day, you get to walk away, every Friday with a paycheck in hand. It’s not your fucking kid!
I lucked out. I nanny for two great children that I love and adore, for a couple that I love and adore. But after immersing myself in what quite possibly might be the closest thing to parenthood I will ever be able to simulate, all of a sudden sex doesn’t seem that great (or necessary) anymore.
Will I ever be ready for this? (I think the answer is: No one ever is.)
And if nannying didn’t do the trick for your new version of birth control, just ask those play-date mothers about child rearing.
“Now, Natalie, if you choose to have children and if you choose to breastfeed, just be aware that both breasts are going to lactate, at the same exact time.”
Yeah, let’s just call play-date mothers your new spermicidal lube.
I don’t regret becoming a nanny. The simplicity of children makes everything so black and white, when usually you are stuck in a world of ambiguity and confusion.
It took two children to show me that at this point in my life, at 24, I am still a child. To show me how immature, and selfish, and naïve I still am.
The pill can’t do that. Neither can condoms (no matter what the brand). Parenthood is the ultimate act of selflessness. I'm glad I'm figuring out that gem of truth way before I have babies popping out of my lady parts.