to be allowed to spend time settling dd into nursery

(54 Posts)
TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:12:24

We've had a paperwork visit, a session where I left her for an hour which went ok and then a disastrous session today where she seems to have cried for 2 hours & wouldn't eat or drink. She spent 90 minutes this afternoon breastfeeding/napping on me, which she hasn't done for weeks - dd is 8 months old.

Nursery say it's 'the best thing' for me to hand her over then leave. Instinct tells me I should put her down, rather than hand her to someone as this makes her cry immediately. I feel I should sit with her for say 10 mins while she plays so she can get some confidence, then say a firm goodbye & leave.

AIBU? It's a great nursery, but my instincts are telling me this isn't the right approach to settling in for dd. I'm not back at work till September & really want to make the transition as gentle as it can be. WHat settling in sessions did you do? How can I make this transition easier for dd?

pitterpatterrain Mon 01-Aug-16 19:19:58

When I settled DD we spent a week on settling (note that it was a bit of a relaxed nursery, DD was younger at 6 months).

First day 9-4 I essentially looked after her in the nursery environment so they could see the existing routine / way of holding / way of putting down for naps etc. Next day I think I left at lunch to go out for a couple of hours, gradually reducing down to handing over on last day.

Always handed her to someone for a cuddle if I recall, not putting her down but it was a while ago. Later when she walked she would toddle off. (She is now 2.8)

Vixyboo Mon 01-Aug-16 19:21:00

I can see both sides.

I have worked in a number of nurseries. It always made it harder to settle a child when a parent hung around for a while. The child started to feel the parent was staying and then they suddenly left.

My ds doesn't go to child care so I can only imagine your feelings. I feel sore for you. When I leave my son with relatives or friends I slip away with no goodbye. If I say goodbye he has a meltdown! He is 2 though so a bit older. He is better if he doesn't know I have gone.

Don't give up. It could just be your baby needs time to adjust.

Vixyboo Mon 01-Aug-16 19:23:04

The nursery should do their best to take into consideration your preferences too though

trilbydoll Mon 01-Aug-16 19:28:21

I must admit, I disagree about putting her down, neither of mine have ever responded well to being left on the floor - they would both start crying the minute I did that even if I stayed to play. If you hand her over to someone it's less like she's being 'left' iyswim.

My top tip is sit them down for breakfast and stay until there's food in front of them. The minute there's tears or even a wobbly bottom lip I'm sprinting out of there, it really doesn't help if I stay. The worst drop offs have always been when I've needed to say something to the staff and I've stayed too long.

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:29:02

Thanks Vixyboo - this is what I need, the nursery point of view. I understand what you're saying, but what if the nursery staff can't settle the child? They couldn't settle dd today. Have you ever seen a gradual retreat approach work?

pitterpatterrain - that sounds like what I wish I could do...

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:33:55

Dd is reacting badly to people other than me or oh picking her up until she has had time to get used to them at the moment. She likes to sit & look round, get involved in something, then she is more likely to go to friends/other family. I've had a couple of people I know suggest the same has worked with their little ones & it was what worked for her last visit - I came back & they had her sitting playing.

Griphook Mon 01-Aug-16 19:33:58

The thing is from the nurses point of view is if she thinks you are staying because you've stayed before the will relax and then you go and she gets upset, then the next tine you/she comes in she clinging to your hair to get you to stay.
Often if harder for a Carer to settle a child if the parent is there.

Short and sweet sessions building up are the way to go so dd starts to build confidence.

Griphook Mon 01-Aug-16 19:35:22

Sorry for grammar, my ds's are driving me to distraction

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:36:02

She refused to eat or drink for them today despite being starving and thirsty. She ate/drank loads when we got home.

coconutpie Mon 01-Aug-16 19:36:19

A good nursery will do at least a week settling in and possibly longer, if the child needs it. I did a very gentle settling in time with DC and stayed there for a good while. 10 mins is nothing! I was there for a couple of hours the first few days! They can't just expect you to dump your DD and run, they are total strangers to her. She needs to have time to get to know them and the best way of doing that is with you with her while it's happening. You are paying nursery for the service. You tell them how you'll be settling her in.

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:37:28

Thanks griphook, what do you do if the baby cries immediately then will not settle & continues to cry once parent has left?

coconutpie Mon 01-Aug-16 19:38:15

Normal too to refuse food / drink in a nursery when settling in. Same as naps.

Sirzy Mon 01-Aug-16 19:38:32

Why don't you put her down but then the staff member your handing over to get down and play with her?

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:39:08

coconutpie that is how I feel it is for her. Feel so terrible being told by professionals - whose opinions I respect - something so different from what I think I should be doing

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:40:52

Sirzy i think that might work well. I want to talk to the room leader tomorrow and talk it through. It will help to have some ideas of what we can try that might work better than this morning.

Lules Mon 01-Aug-16 19:42:27

Mine does a settling in period over 3 weeks. First week you go an hour a day with with the baby. Second week you leave them, but initially for short periods and stay nearby, building up to full days at the end of the third. So it's gradual. But when it comes to actually leaving him (only had 1st day today) I will leave him quickly because I know from leaving him with babysitters etc that he reacts better to that.

TheSkyAtNight Mon 01-Aug-16 19:45:57

Lules that sounds great. I totally get the whole not dragging out goodbyes, but feel she needs to get some familiarity with the security of me there.

Lules Mon 01-Aug-16 19:55:34

Yes I completely agree. It will all be fine in the end but it sounds very stressful for the both of you at the moment

BeanCalledPickle Mon 01-Aug-16 19:58:12

Mine is exactly the same as yours, paperwork and then two hours and then off they go. First two weeks didn't eat, drink or nap much. Then got over it and now both children are evidently happier there than at home. Seeing it from the nurseries perspective they surely wouldn't cope with multiple parents underfoot settling them down for breakfast? It's a bit of a harsh start but ultimately parents have to work and I suspect many just don't have time for multiple settling in sessions. I reckon if you give it time it will be ok.

MammouthTask Mon 01-Aug-16 20:05:08

Hmm, when I left my dcs at nursery (younger than this too), I did take the time to ensure they were settle. It started with them having the child in their arms whilst I was still there..

I agree with the fact that more often than not, children settle much more quikckly when the parent isn't there.
And that it can take a few days for them to settle.
But none of mine have ever cried solid like this for 2 hours. One have they not eaten or drunk because they were so upset. It would make me unconfortable TBH, unless I knew that my child is unconfortable;e with strangers anyway, iyswim.

Boiing Mon 01-Aug-16 21:15:19

Follow your instincts and don't allow yourself to be bullied into doing things the nurseries way OP. It's up to you how to settle her in, not them, they are your employees and you, not they, are the expert on your child. I totally get that it can be inconvenient for nurseries having parents around but that's just part of the job. Some children settle very quickly, some don't. Incidentally when I was viewing a nursery for a 1 hr trial session, there was a new child there who wailed a scared 'mummeeeee' every few minutes the whole time. His mum came to get him while I was there and the staff just told her "He was absolutely fine." So do take staff comments with a pinch of salt. Lots more advice in the mumsnet talk archive. My view on it was I was prepared to walk away from my child yelling he was angry about staying, but not if he was scared, but I settled in much older so not sure that helps. Big hug xxx

RubbleBubble00 Mon 01-Aug-16 21:40:53

leave her but stay in building out of site/sit in car. If she hasn't settle after 30mins then take her out and try again the next day. Your not hovering but thers is she very unsettled

Billyray23 Mon 01-Aug-16 21:58:36

I am a nursery practitioner. This is how we do gradual admission.
Day 1 parent and baby/ child visits for approx 1hour. Key person chats to parent finds all about baby. Key person talks too, smiles at baby without being too hands on.
Day 2 parent stays with baby/child but key person will play with baby/child parent takes a back seat but is there if baby/child need them
Day 3 same as day 2 but parent might leave room saying bye to baby/ child for15/30 mins.
Day 4same as day 3 but parent leaves for an hour.
Day5 if all is going well baby/ child may stay for 2/3 hours and it's built up from there.

We find this method works real!y well and most children/ babies are well settled within 2 weeks.

Staff should not be rushing you away. You need to feel confident with leaving baby and baby will get a positive vibe from you and will settle easier.

trafalgargal Mon 01-Aug-16 21:59:07

The nursery workers are NOT your employees. It's a business client relationship.

If you want an employer/employee relationship then get a nanny.

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