Need urgent nursery advice please help!!

(63 Posts)
Whenwillwestopmoving Mon 01-Jul-13 17:33:55

5mo dd is 'settling in' in nursery this week - I go back to work next week, 2.5 days / week. So far she has just been familiarising with the staff, tomorrow I drop her off so she can have her morning nap there. I'm totally stressed now as the baby room leader has told me that they won't rock / cuddle the babies to sleep, or even shush pat them. If they don't sleep, or cry so they disturb the other babies, tough.

DD had all sorts of colicky troubles when tiny, was fed then rocked to sleep, and I have spent so much time and effort getting her into a regular napping pattern, but it looks like its all going to go up in smoke. She doesn't need much help getting to sleep (a bit of rocking and patting as long as you catch her at the right time) but I know for sure if she's just popped in a cot awake she'll cry the house down. Is this practice common in nurseries?

I'm having major last minute jitters about going back to work early anyway, but I need people's honest opinions - should I gear up to having to take time off work in the first week or two to sort this all out? Do babies end up having to leave nurseries and going to childminders because of not nappiNg? Can babies be expelled from nurseries for crying or being troublesome??? (Only half joking...) I did meet a few childminders but the nursery was highly recommended, and a friends kids are in the same one which will be nice as we're moving to an area where I don't know many people.

I think I've buried my head in the sand to an extent as just didn't want to think about this time actually coming - and now I'm wondering if I've really f**cked up putting her in nursery at all.

MillionPramMiles Tue 02-Jul-13 09:08:24

I really feel for you, I was worried about my dd sleeping at nursery too. My dd started nursery at 10 months (and is now 14 months) and whilst I'm happy the nursery do all the reasonably can, she has never slept much there. Most days its 40mins in the cot, sometimes less. She's shattered at the end of the day but as she's got older she copes well and does enjoy nursery. She's never slept much though, even as a newborn so I don't think its the nurserys fault.

The nursery staff did sometimes try rocking her to sleep in the bouncy chair in her first few weeks though I noticed they didn't have the time to do this every day. They never left her to cry though and would always hold and soothe her and try to distract her even if they couldn't get her to sleep. Perhaps ask the nursery what they'll do if your dd is tired and grisly and won't sleep?

I couldn't find a suitable childminder either and they didn't give me any comfort that dd would sleep more as they had to fit in school runs, playgroups etc. A part-time nanny would be the ideal at that age but hard to find (and expensive!).

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 02-Jul-13 09:13:23

Good luck op!

babySophieRose Tue 02-Jul-13 09:54:59

In our nursery they use a bouncy chair for the little ones, could you check if they are happy to use one?

Whenwillwestopmoving Tue 02-Jul-13 13:55:17

So a quick update - she was shattered and more than ready for her nap when I dropped her off, and she slept for 30 minutes, although the staff did say it was challenging! They told me that they soothed her a bit in the cot but not all the way to sleep. They encouraged me to try the same at home, and she self settled for her lunchtime nap. I nearly fainted with the shock when I peeked into the cot and she was asleep! So I guess they let her cry it out a good bit hmm. Plan is for the same, morning nap at creche tomorrow, we'll see if it lasts....

LimitedEditionLady Tue 02-Jul-13 13:59:47

I cant see them not nursing such a little baby if they dont then it doesnt sound a nice place.Theyd be stupid to let one baby wake the others up!If you arent happy ring them and ask.Do it now.if you still not happy take baby out.This is YOUR child not theirs and YOU pay them they ateny doing you a favour

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 02-Jul-13 14:06:58

When great that she is starting to self settle.

But please don't let them leave her to CIO - it is warned against by the NHS for young babies now as they think it can cause raised cortisol in the brain which can raise stress in the longer term. There is no need for them to leave her like that - if she's upset they can just pick her up.

Noggie Tue 02-Jul-13 14:08:40

I really feel for you- nurseries and naps are not the best combination. With a 1:3 ratio there is no way a member of staff can devote a lot if time to settling one little one as what about the other two? Both my dd went to nursery from a young age- my dd1 was an awful sleeper and that continued at nursery but once she dropped to one nap it was better. Going back to work is a tough tough time for everyone- the mum especially. Hope your dd settles ok and nursery naps get easier x

choceyes Tue 02-Jul-13 14:18:11

I wouldn't be happy about a nursery that lets babies cry to sleep. The nursery I use for my DD and DS also have the same ratios but they manage to get everybody off to sleep without much crying. If they do cry they do rock and cuddle to sleep. When DD was settling in, she found it difficult and wouldn't sleep, but was tired and crying, they called me so I went in and BF her to sleep at lunchtime for one or two days (work creche, so I'm only 2mins away).

Babies do have this magical way of going to sleep at nursery in ways they never do at home! My DD would never go to sleep at home with me jsut patting her back. At nursery that's what they did in the early days. Now they just put them on mats on the floor and they go to sleep...like magic! I think getting them to sleep on the floor on mats is easier than in cots.

Whenwillwestopmoving Tue 02-Jul-13 14:37:29

Harriet I know, and I saw recent research that its only after 7 months that they can say for sure there are no long term effects from CIO. I'm presuming (and will check with them tomorrow) that she wasn't v distressed, and will make it clear that I don't want her left alone crying and v upset, but I think a bit of whinging is ok. I'm relieved she slept but you are right of course.

threefeethighandrising Tue 02-Jul-13 14:41:31

IMO if I had to tell them not to let my baby CIO then it's not a good enough nursery.

DS's nursery is lovely, and so child-centred. They'd never let a child CIO, they wouldn't have to be told.

MillionPramMiles Tue 02-Jul-13 14:42:20

Whenwill - echoing others, I really would speak to the nursery and ask them what they do. Personally I'd be surprised if they'd leave a child to cry as it would wake others up (and particularly given CC isn't recommended by the NHS for babies under 6 months). You might feel reassured if you have a frank discussion with them about your concerns?
The nursery my dd attends used a bouncy chair to the point dd was nearly asleep then transferred her to the cot. They said they tried not to bounce the child to full sleep but instead let the child settle themselves that last little bit in the cot. This didn't mean letting them CIO though and they always stayed close by and picked dd up if she did wake and cry.
(The bigger problem with my dd seems to be her wanting to play at nap time rather than cry though :-/

Lazybones12 Tue 02-Jul-13 15:18:40

As others have said your little one will have a completely different way of operating at crèche. My 3 certainly did. Are you happy with the crèche. If you are then she will be gone and adapt to the routines of crèche

waterrat Tue 02-Jul-13 18:05:34

I would not leave my child in this situation - it sounds shocking to me. No nap if she cries?! And no rocking or cuddling? That's brutal and unkind.

I really really recommend using a childminder I think it's the best setting - and my cm would cuddle/ buggy my ds to sleep - not probably as much as I would but never just picking up without letting him have a nap

5 months is so little she will need a couple of naps at least ..,,, it seems very uncaring policy

I also think you have to go with instincts re childcare and it sounds like you are not happy

NothingsLeft Tue 02-Jul-13 21:38:17

Agree the nursery doesn't sound great. Who would purposefully not let a five month old nap?! If she needs a cuddle is totally what should be happening. Especially was she's so young.

Whenwillwestopmoving Tue 02-Jul-13 21:59:40

Thing is, when I've gone along to pick her up (3 occasions now) she has been happy as Larry, once on a staff member's lap, once in the swing being played with, and today she was rolling around on the playmat with another baby and a staff member with the two of them. No tears at all. Unlike me this morning! We'll see how it goes.

Another thing that concerned me was that the plan is for her to stay for 'dinner' on Thursday. The staff member said that they'll give her baby rice, or I can bring in food from home if I want. I explained that because she is only 22 weeks (also only just stopped breastfeeding; that saga of attempting to continue is a whole other issue!) she isn't on solids yet, and I have no plans to start til closer to 6 months.I was shown a packet of something or other and informed that she should have started it at 4 months hmm.

I'm really not painting a good picture here, am I?

stealthsquiggle Tue 02-Jul-13 22:11:49

OP it doesn't sound great, TBH. Both the nurseries my DC went to would soothe/cuddle DC to sleep, and at DD's a lot of them ended up sleeping in pushchairs (down flat) so the they could be rocked without disturbing the others.

DS's nursery did beg to wean him at 4.5 months (10 years ago, it was the norm then) but only because he was following every spoonful with his eyes when they were feeding the other babies and it was breaking their hearts grin. There were no packets, either - on - site cook prepared stuff from scratch daily.

No easy answers, but I for one think your concerns are valid.

maja00 Tue 02-Jul-13 23:06:17

Wow, I would be really worried about the weaning stuff too - so their nutritional knowledge is about 13 years old of date hmm Sounds like they do not know enough about young babies to meet their need effectively imo.

What is their Ofsted report like?

NothingsLeft Wed 03-Jul-13 01:40:59

Oh dear. They don't sound very baby friendly.

DS's nursery take them from a year and I always see babies in buggies being rocked. They have cuddles him to sleep and he has snoozed on their lap if he's needed an extra nap etc. I wouldn't expect otherwise, even more so if they were younger.

Could you look for somewhere else? Or a nanny share if childminders were unsuitable?

ChippingInWiredOnCoffee Wed 03-Jul-13 02:01:44

The food thing is a real issue for three reasons - 1. She's 5 months, she does not need to be on solids 2. If she was on solids, she wouldn't be eating that (if she was mine) and 3. - the most important reason they are not listening to you - she is your DD, you have said 'she isn't on solids yet' and somehow they are now showing you what they will be giving her - what she 'should' have had at 4 months, not what she 'could' have had at 4 months and if they are going to disregard your opinion on this, what else will they do???

The sleeping - I'd want to know more and I would probably see how she went as many of them are different/more tired at nursery so it might not be as issue (though I don't like their attitude).

I don't suppose you can stretch to a part time nanny can you??

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 03-Jul-13 02:06:16

Yeah, I don't like that they're 'correcting' your parenting wrt the solids thing. I do feel for you, OP, I went back to work at five months with my first, and it's a tough road even without all of these worries.

On the bright side, it does sound as if she's settling in beautifully, so I don't think you need worry on that score too much if you're otherwise happy. But the overall view does sound like they know best and you can like it or lump it, which would bother me. I don't think you need panic short term - she's clearly not being neglected - but I'd look around for something else longer term. This is a long relationship you've embarked on, the one with your baby's carers, so it's worth getting it right.

WouldBeHarrietVane Wed 03-Jul-13 06:11:27

When, on the solids issue, you are the mother and their advice is very out of date. The studies now show that feeding solids before 6 months can increase risks of allergies and other stomach problems, so your concerns are completely valid. Do NOT let then push you info solids. Just refuse and say she'll have them at 6 months.

Did they refuse to feed ebm?

Please just go with your instincts. My DS had an awful nanny for 2 months and I really wish I'd sacked her in the probation period sad

matana Wed 03-Jul-13 07:59:55

I'm with others op, it doesn't sound good at all and I would not be comfortable with anything you have said about their approach.

Cosmo89 Wed 03-Jul-13 09:34:45

Isn't the advice on solids different in Ireland? I seem to remember reading thay somewhere.

As they soothed her in the cot for a bit on the first day, they're obviously not not anti it.

My soon started pt at nursery at 7 months. Naps were a nightmare for us at home. At nursery, they found it easier and were able to stop shush patting and bouncing (our domestic routine) within a month. Yes, they left him to cry a few times - which he did for all of a few minutes before rolling over and going to sleep.. They wouldnt have left him longer or if really distressed. Part of the reason, apart from getting older, was that he was much more stimulated at nursery and, consequently, more tired I think.

I hope it's going well. My son loves nursery. I feel lucky we can afford to send him there now, though I had my doubts about going back to work, he's thriving and I don't think I could replicate that environment at home. I'm much more positive about it now.

lola88 Wed 03-Jul-13 10:07:52

That was my main reason for choosing a childminder she had much more time to do things the way I wanted them done which is not possible in nurseries. Not that nurseries are bed DN went to a lovely nursery and was very happy there but DS was a totally different kind of baby and I know due to his naps I needed someone more 1 on 1 for him.

They sound very poorly informed if they are taking guidance from the back of a packet of baby rice. Are any if them qualified or working towards qualification?

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