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Nanny while Mum at home on mat leave - advice/reassurance needed

(7 Posts)
Jennibel Fri 06-Sep-13 12:01:18

I have a 2.6 year old DS and a newborn. Having struggled after the birth of DS, we decided to hire someone to help me out with DS and the household chores for when the new baby arrived (a sort of nanny-housekeeper role). We found a lovely lady who started with us two weeks before the birth to give her time to get to know DS. She is great with him, and he really likes her and she is also a massive help round the house. He is absolutely fine when out and about with her on his own.

However, my DS seems quite unsettled when both the nanny and I are at home together. I am obviously spending most of my time with the newborn (am BF) but I do try and spend some quality time with him each day and do bath most days for him but he is quite grumpy with me and doesn't seem his usual happy self. I am feeling so guilty for not being there for him all the time (eg. when he asks for me to give him his bath but I am feeding the baby so I have to say the nanny will do it and he gets upset). It breaks my heart seeing him upset and I am worrying that he will feel rejected by me and that it will damage our relationship long term.

Can anyone reassure me that he will be ok? And/or give me some tips on how to manage things when we are all in the house together? Do you think continuity would be best - ie. nanny does certain things with/for him every day and I do certain things every day at the same time each day?

MonstersDontCry Fri 06-Sep-13 12:10:59

I'm not sure I have any advice really but I'm going through s similar thing.

I have DD (just turned 2) and DS (6 weeks) DD wants me to do everything for her like brushing her teeth/changing nappies/putting clothes on. She will not let DP do anything for her.

I'll use your example of bathtime. If I can't do it because of bf the baby, I'll say 'daddy will do it' but she will just scream for me.

I feel really guilty that I can't give DD my full attention so I really know how you feel.

MonstersDontCry Fri 06-Sep-13 12:13:02

Also, most people have siblings, so would have had to go through this at some point in their lives. I try and tell myself this! Your DS will be fine.

Jennibel Fri 06-Sep-13 12:34:10

Thanks Monsters! I guess I'm particularly concerned as it is not a family member providing the care for DS, which I worry might add to his feelings of rejection. We don't have any family nearby and DH works very long hours, hence why we hired someone. It is only a temp contract. The nanny is absolutely lovely, I couldn't wish for someone better, I just can't help worrying about it.

Svrider Fri 06-Sep-13 12:38:07

Could you give ds a choice?
He can either sit quietly with you whilst you feed baby, or go and do something with nanny
I do have lovely memories if been snuggled with my 2yo and 4yo whilst feeding ds

Ieatmypeaswithhoney Fri 06-Sep-13 15:34:51

Our nanny stayed with us while I was on mat leave with DS2. DS1 knew and loved her already so not quite the same situation, and she is now looking after both of them now that I am back at work again. However, I had the same bath time issues - I had always done bath time before having DS2, but then sometimes it just wasn't possible to do it after, or I would start and then have to stop because DS2 was hungry (I also BF). DS1 didn't like it when that happened and I hated it and felt dreadfully guilty.

However, it passes! I have to say that bath time is not the same now, even with DS2 having turned 1 - it used to be a nice gentle time for just me and DS1 and obviously DS2 is now part of that, but I now get DS2 to bed a bit before DS1 so DS1 and I have some time alone together for stories and cuddles.

Once the feeding settles into a bit of a pattern it will be easier for you as well, as you will have more of an idea of when you can start activities with your son and be able to see them through. I had a lovely second maternity leave after the initial newborn phase - having my nanny around meant that things were a lot easier for me and also we went on outings together a lot which meant she could watch DS2 in the buggy while I did things with DS1.

Your son will also get used to having you and the nanny around I'm sure, and it won't be long before you can give him more of your attention again.

I do feel for you though - I think that was the hardest thing for me about having a second, not having all that time for the first, but its all good in the long run!

Babouche Fri 06-Sep-13 16:40:50

I was in a similar situation.I had a nanny for 2 days per week when my last baby was born 6m ago,mainly to help with DS who was 2.I found that the best thing was to get the nanny to do the same activity with him each week which in the morning was a walk out to a toddler group with the pushchair.He went out with her and I made sure I was out when they got back so she had to do lunch and nap.We had a few tears the first couple of times but after that it was fine.Nanny is no longer with us but DS insists that the changing bag that I gave her to put on his pushchair is nanny's,not mine!

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