Note: Please bear in mind that this is a discussion board, not a place to advertise childcare vacancies or recruit childminders/nannies etc. We don't mind the odd mumsnet regular mentioning that they're looking for a job/mindee (although you're probably better off in MN Local) but repeated job "ads" and posts from nanny/babysitting agencies aren't fair to people who are paying for small business ads. Do feel free to report any you see. Thanks, MNHQ.

CM can't get DD to sleep, please help.

(31 Posts)
tiredbutgood Thu 06-Dec-12 21:25:35

I have just started to put my DD (who's 1years old), with a childminder for the first time the other day (this was suppose to be a settling in session). Unfortunately, she had to phone me after 45 minutes, saying that she was screaming, and pulling at her ear, and that she tried everything! My DD was very tired that day and needed some sleep, but my CM had not tried to put her down to sleep. She has not got a separate cot bed to put her into, (as she presfers to put them into a buggy instead). But i can only put my DD down to sleep in a cot at home, and this has to be a quite room, with her music on as she is very noise sensitive. My CM asked me whether i let her cry it out?, but i don't agree with this method. I am really upset to think that 'crying it out' will be her only choice, and that she has no 'quite room' or cot to put her into. I feel horrible really, that i have set my dauugter up, to be un-compatable with childcare, due to her being so difficult to put to sleep.
It just seems that my DD is just not going to get any sleep, (unless she sleeps in her buggy on the school runs), and that is not enough! Should i consider another CM or a nursery, where they have a cot? And how do i stand if i did change my mind, as I have signed a contract?

our childminder only has room for one travel cot upstairs in her room and then has some mats on lounge floor as my toddler is used to them for nursery he sleeps happily on mats and one other toddler who goes prefers the cot, if he is only one there he sleeps in travel cot happily.

I have to say unless it was my only option I wouldnt have chose a childminder who didnt have the faciltiies I needed, I would have asked about sleep arrangements on 1st meeting

tiredbutgood, I had a similiar experience on my first settling in session for my DD. She was 9 months at the time. I didn't actually leave her and stayed with her. Like you, I had big concerns about the reality of how my DD would nap while she was there. In addition to this, I just had a feeling that it wasn't the right place for her.

This was all very stressful but we found an excellent alternative that we are thrilled with (she's been attending for 3 months now). We had also signed a contract, but were able to give the CM the 4 weeks notice to cancel that it stated in the small print.

My advice would be to find another setting that is more suited to the individual needs of your baby. Good luck. I know it's a worrying time.

greenbananas Mon 10-Dec-12 19:29:35

(should add that the pushchair my mindee occasionally slept in was the sort that lay completely flat and had plenty of space around him - but this was still not ideal, I know)

greenbananas Mon 10-Dec-12 19:24:42

When I had an 11 month old mindee start with me last year, his mother and I were determined that he would sleep in a travel cot, as he did at home. It worked for about a month and then he hated it. We couldn't let him cry himself to sleep, because that seemed so cruel, so he started sleeping in the sling instead. When he got too heavy for that, I used to wheel him around the neighbourhood in a pushchair until he slept, but that had a detrimental effect on my other mindees. Eventually, his mum and I agreed that we would give up on the cot completely, and only insist that he slept in the pushchair if he was really tired and cranky. Ofsted weren't impressed that we had taken the travel cot away, but they did appreciate that we were working together in the best interests of the child.

Children often behave differently in a CM setting, and this includes the way they sleep. I think the key is that childminders and parents work together. OP, this is very early in your relationship with the new childminder. Do you think you can work with her?

MaryPoppinsBag Sun 09-Dec-12 09:09:48

Fraktion I'm not sure, but I reckon being held is the most natural way for a baby to be. It just doesn't fit in with our lifestyles. Particularly when the ratio is 3:1.

Ofsted don't like Bumbo seats either. And many nurseries are putting them in skips. I've never liked them.

fraktion Sat 08-Dec-12 23:15:03

What do OFSTED say about slings and napping then?

I'm a believer in if they'll sleep then they'll sleep and that's great! But I have a non sleeper.

In any case if your DD is used to that nap routine you should be looking for childcare that can replicate that as much as possible. If this CM can't your DD will end up exhausted so you'd need a new one.

Blondeshavemorefun Sat 08-Dec-12 14:41:26

not surprised your dd was screaming, she was tired and in a strange environment and with a stranger and no cm is going to put a new mindee down for a sleep within 45mins of having her

i am surprised that Ofsted dont make all cm have a quiet room with a cot/travel cot in it

it is better for babies/toddlers to sleep in a cot rather then a buggy every day, not good for their neck or back or posture if always in a buggy

i do believe it is good for children to learn to sleep anywhere, so good to have the odd sleep in the buggy or in car for example

saying that better to sleep in a buggy then have no sleep

did you look round at the sleeping arrangements when you met the cm - did it not occur to you strange there was no cot/travel cot

often children who only ever sleep in cots and get rocked to sleep will sleep and settle well with a cm/nursery/nanny - they behave differently smile

so op - you can either try again if happy for dd to sleep in the buggy during the day and have a settling in period when she isnt tired/due a meal or look for a new one

if you provided a travel cot, could the cm put in her bedroom/another room?

MaryPoppinsBag Sat 08-Dec-12 07:55:45

That's the official line though. The Ofsted inspector didn't like the bouncers when they came to do a visit after a complaint (malicious) And said they shouldn't be in them.

I already knew this but as an unqualified childminder what would I know? (nursery managers were all about having level 3 or above but clearly despite their qualifications didn't know everything)

I think arms are OK because then you can pop them down.
Sometimes i do agree there isn't another way especially if children have never been trained to sleep in a cot in the day at home.
However, I don't think they should spend the full naps duration in a bouncer.
After the visit the nursery staff got them to sleep in the bouncers and moved them to the cots.

Some babies enjoyed the comfort of being strapped in as I suspect they'd spent a lot of time strapped in at home for convenience!

sleeplessinderbyshire Fri 07-Dec-12 21:39:24

MaryPoppinsBag - if you have a child who will not sleep in a cot (and trust me I've had one of them) I think it is far better they sleep somewhere rather than being awake and cranky all day.Clearly the ideal is a cot but my DD1 slept in a staff members arms or in the bouncy chair for 1-2hrs at a time for her first few weeks and I was thrilled they let her sleep somewhere that worked for her rather than putting her in a cot which she hated initially

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 07-Dec-12 21:14:59

sleepless your nursery is wrong babies should sleep in cots as they have space To move and it allows their spine to develop properly.

CM who don't provide cots are obviously also wrong.

sleeplessinderbyshire Fri 07-Dec-12 21:08:00

I admit that I use nursery not a CM but I really think you've picked the wrong childcarer for your DD. Quite apart from the fact that it is insane to ring you after only 45 minutes of a settling in session, the CM sounds as if she is not being child centred in the care she offers. My DD2 is 5 months and had her first settling in session at nursery this week. There are usually just 3 babies in the room with 1:1 care from one individual. One 2 days there are 4 or5 babies so there are 2 staff member. They sleep in cots or on mats or in a buggy or a bouncer (or in someone's arms) according to what they need/prefer and they sleep when they are tired not at set times (unless they have a set routine at home)

Gilberte Fri 07-Dec-12 19:48:27

MaryPoppinsBag- You sound like a great childminder(that's what a great childminder should be doing)

Please don't think I'm getting at childminders, I'm not.

I just didn't have that sort of level of care available in my area so opted for what was the best option for me and OP should do the same.

lechatnoir Fri 07-Dec-12 19:43:08

I am 4 weeks into having a 9 month old - I normally do 2 x 1 hour settling in sessions but first hour she cried solid whilst I comforted her 2nd session 40 mins crying, stopped for snack then started again so I added another 2 hour session where she cried for about 20mins then settled for an hour before starting again!! 4 weeks on bar the odd bout if tears if she's tired or hungry she's fine but doesn't like me leaving the room!! I would say trying to get her to sleep in my first settling in session would have been pointless but, am surprised the cm called you as tears are to be expected at this age and as long as she was comforting her you rushing back won't have helped settle her.
Not having at least the option of sleeping in cot would be a deal breaker for me as would any niggling doubts about her ability (speaking now as parent not CM).

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 07-Dec-12 19:28:22

Gilberte that sounds like a normal day round my house too. Whether I am looking after mindees or just my own.

Gilberte Fri 07-Dec-12 19:23:57

Oh and sorry to be picky but depends what you mean is a "normal day".

At home me and the DCs tend to play, do activities, sing, have snacks, do messy play, paint, colour. That seems to be what they are doing at nursery too.

Gilberte Fri 07-Dec-12 19:20:41

Ah well sorry ReetPetit, there are good and bad nurseries and I happen to think mine is great. Many of the staff have their own babies in the nursery.

I think they are flexible in the sense that they are open all year round and have more staff so can deal with specific and individual needs. My DD often had a nap in the morning for instance and they were fine with that.

I'm afraid I was put off childminders when I witnessed childminders (at a childminder get together) strapping children into pushchairs and putting them in dark rooms as a form of discipline and threatening it if they didn't look like they were enjoying themselves.

Plus they didn't interact/play with them at all which I thought was rather odd.

I'm not saying nursery is perfect just that I'd rather have a nursery with lots of staff that I have a good feeling about than one childminder I'm not sure about.

RosieGirl Fri 07-Dec-12 18:11:44

You need to talk to your CM asap. I try and discuss most of these things early on and it seems you haven't really sat down and discussed your DD's needs and requirements. I have dealt with children with all different sleep needs, and especially in the beginning understand it can be hard work especially if they are a bit older. I will start out doing what the parents do, to ensure they feel secure and safe, and over time as the child grows I find they settle into a routine with me and are used to the fact it can be different here to home. A quite space can be difficult with other children around, but again if I was settling in a child who needs that quiet time I would find something for older children to do that kept them quieter, even bribing with a bit of TV. I personally prefer cots but at the moment most of my parents are so busy, little ones just sleep in the car or buggy so won't settle into a cot.

Good luck.

ReetPetit Fri 07-Dec-12 17:45:10

do you work in one or do your kids go to one Samvet?

Samvet Fri 07-Dec-12 17:40:50

Reetpetit that is not true of all nurseries - Mine does whatKever routine the baby is used to. This means they have babies sleeping at different times but they have the staff to deal with this. Not the regimented system you mention. Mine also will rock/cuddle as needed. Of course don't know what they do behind the scenes but mine sleeps better there than at home!

ReetPetit Fri 07-Dec-12 17:28:23

oh i must have missed that,didn't realise she had only been there 45 minutes shock
in that case, i would say the cm hasn't done anything wrong. i wouldn't be putting a child I had had only had for 45 minutes down in a cot alone ion a new environment. What time of day was the settling session??
I'm presuming the morning....
I would give it a bit of time. 1 year is the worse time for settling, it will take a while and if this was the first time your dd has been, it will take a bit of time to get her used to sleeping in a different place.
don't panic - your anxiety will rub off on her! smile

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 07-Dec-12 14:26:13

So your daughter has been to 1 settling in session and hasn't settled well? Is that right?
Only there for 45 minutes? And CM called you because she was distressed? Have I got it right?

How long was the settling in session supposed to be?

Maybe CM didn't expect to have to put her to sleep as she is there to get to know the CM. And the session might have been better planned when your DD was more rested.

Why not try again when your DD is more rested. And discuss the sleep arrangements with your CM again. There's plenty of time for napping in a cot between dinner time and the school run. I would just pop the other child safe in a high hair or pushchair whilst I settled your DD in another room.

I would say there is a strong chance of your DD being unsettled for a while until she gets used to her surroundings. And she may not settle in a cot in a strange house just because she does for you at home.

Your DD is at the prime age for separation anxiety so settling her maybe hard wherever she goes.

In the nursery I worked in the baby's didn't nap for long because they woke each other up, as they napped in same room.

ReetPetit Fri 07-Dec-12 14:09:11

and Gilberte, sorry to be picky, but i hardly think you can call a nursery more flexible than a childminder!! having worked in them as a nursery nurse (now a childminder) i would never put a young child in a nursery!! things are very regimented in a nursery, and children have to sleep whether they want to or not - childminders are generally much more flexible and give children a much more normal day - this one just doesn't sound like a very good one...

ReetPetit Fri 07-Dec-12 14:06:42

she doesn't sound great tbh, if you are still in the settling period, personally, i would move dd before she has bonded/settled as this childminder sounds quite unflexible and not very child centred.
i do know a lot of childminders who have children sleeping in buggies due to space restrictions. personally, i put all mine down in cots in dark rooms after lunch as i think the routine is good and i find they sleep better. it's just finding a childminder who suits you and your child. you need to ask these questions at the first meeting and try and get someone who does what you do at home as much as possible.

HSMM Fri 07-Dec-12 04:57:28

I am a CM. No school runs and the children sleep when and where they need to. Have a chat to your CM and look for another one if you need to.

Gilberte Thu 06-Dec-12 22:15:53

Surely many children have their naps in cots so I don't see your daughter as having particular needs. However, I always found it difficult to get my DD to nap in a cot, once she was out of the sling and almost impossible when I had DD1 in the house, so always used the buggy when we were on the way back from playgroup etc and would then leave her in a quiet place to sleep.

I think you might want to consider a nursery because they are much more flexible (no school runs/ shopping trips). All the baies tend to get put down to sleep after lunch and even my children who used to resist naps for me, went easily for nursery staff

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now