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Aibu to think dcs 4 and 5 won't wither away without playgroups?

(24 Posts)
Poweredbypepsi Wed 20-Jul-11 11:04:19

I have 4 dcs I am pregnant with dc5. We had dc4s 1 year check yesterday she is apparently fine. The health visitor expressed horror and concern however that we attended no groups. She spent most of the appointment time making comments about how my daughter needed to socialise with other children. As I pointed out to her we have plenty of interaction with other people though the schools and through family we go out just not to baby groups.
Aibu to think she was slightly crazy and that my children wont wither and die if not taken to playgroups or am I a really crappy mum for hating them?

nethunsreject Wed 20-Jul-11 11:05:19

Yanbu at all!

BeerTricksPotter Wed 20-Jul-11 11:11:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Squiglettsmummy2bx Wed 20-Jul-11 11:13:09

When I had my DS my DD was 2yrs 8mnths & attending loads of toddler groups aswell as ballet & music classes & was well ahead for her age but my HV almost insisted I put her name down for a nursery place & became quite rude when I declined. You know what your children are doing & am sure they won't curl up & die without a baby group to keep them going.

Chandon Wed 20-Jul-11 11:15:43

she was crazy and blinkered.

Clearly, with 4 siblings a child will be surrounded by children most of the time!.

My mum never took my youngest brother to playgroups, as she didn't fancy it and he had so many kids (older brothers and sister, neighbour kids) to play with.

It's great for PFB's though wink

bet you anything the HV had one child only or none herself.

DeWe Wed 20-Jul-11 11:19:14

I don't think yabu... but I didn't take ds to toddler groups partually because the ones I'd taken my dds to closed at about that time, and partually because he had continuous ear infections from 3 months so was always ill.

Like you I thought he had plenty of interactions with other children, we did plenty as a family and it never worried me (or HV either).

However he started at preschool at just over 3yo and he found relating to large groups of children his own age both very exciting and very stressful. I felt he then had to learn social skills in interacting with groups of children over this last year (he starts school in September) when he might well have learnt them at toddler groups when he was younger (--and less stubborn--). If I had him again then I would make an effort to take him to a toddler group, even if only once a month, because I think that would have helped him at preschool.

bumpybecky Wed 20-Jul-11 11:21:07

hv is mad! does she think you keep dc4 in a box to stop any interaction with those nasty germy older siblings?! hmm

Sirzy Wed 20-Jul-11 11:23:18


DS went to tumble tots for a short while but we stopped due to so many parents taking poorly children meaning DS got ill and ended up in hospital.

Now he is 20 months and other than occasionally going to rhyme time at the library we go to no groups.

Applemartini Wed 20-Jul-11 11:31:04

YANBU. The world has gone playgroup and baby class crazy. I don't see that this is really within the HV remit is it? She should mind her own business.

minipie Wed 20-Jul-11 11:35:47

YANBU. I've always assumed baby groups are more for the parents to get out of the house and see other adults, than because the babies need them.

As DeWe says you might want to do some groups as he gets closer to nursery age so it's not such a change for him, but at 1yo? nah.

HalfTermHero Wed 20-Jul-11 11:41:55

YANbU. He has lots of siblings to play with plus I agree that many baby groups are germ pits. Certain things like chicken pox are best avoided until a child is past 1 year so there are reasonable reasons for avoiding I think.

blackeyedsusan Wed 20-Jul-11 11:54:57

she is worried that they will be as thick as a brick because obviously as soon as you become pregnant your brain turns to pink fluff and leaks out of your ears...

socialising at toddler group means learning not to bite, hit, pinch, scratch, push, pull, sit on, or kick other children to get your own way... obviously your children are going to be doing all these things because they have never had to "socialise"....

i expect she thinks you sit on your bum all day watching jk and throwing the odd biscuit or pack of crisps at your children a couple of times a day in lieu of food...

oh and if you haven't got it yanbu... AT ALL.

Casserole Wed 20-Jul-11 12:51:12

I don't think you're BU. We stopped going to toddler groups cos I hate them. But I did put my son in preschool 2 mornings a week for the socialisation aspect, cos I'd heard a few teachers say they'd known some reception children who hadn't had any larger group experience and who then found starting school overwhelming on that front as well as all the usual ones. I figured a couple of mornings a week in preschool would help with that, rather than hitting him with loads of new stuff all at once. I'll do the same with DD when her time comes.

So, no, YANBU. But just another perspective.

ProcrastinatorGeneral Wed 20-Jul-11 13:27:58

Not unreasonable. I take mine to them, but seeing as I run one of them it would be rude not to...

WhereYouLeftIt Wed 20-Jul-11 13:39:30

"YANBU. I've always assumed baby groups are more for the parents to get out of the house and see other adults, than because the babies need them."

Me too, minipie. And I am antisocial enough to never have gone to any.

AurraSing Wed 20-Jul-11 13:40:49

I think it's part of a HV training to find something you are doing 'wrong' and nag at you until you repent. Well done for resisting (mine sent me hundreds of leaflets!), but you do know your name will be on a list now, don't you?

girlywhirly Wed 20-Jul-11 13:41:15

Casserole, I was an only child who lived in an area with no neighbours, no family or relatives close, and attended no nursery school before proper school. I played with one little girl that I can remember, DD of Mums' friend, occasionally. It was horrendous for me. Admittedly this was back in the '60's before playgroups existed, and we couldn't have afforded nursery anyway, but it affected me all my life.

With DS, he went to a childminder and then a day nursery while I worked full time. I tried to socialise him with friends children as often as I could, and he ended up really confident and sociable, he started at reception in a school where he knew none of the children or teachers with no fear at all.

In the case of a child like myself, a HV would be right to be concerned, but in the OP's case, not at all. Do what you think is best for your family, YANBU.

LemonDifficult Wed 20-Jul-11 13:44:55

YANBU. What a load of bollocks.

clucky80 Wed 20-Jul-11 16:47:36

YANBU atall, I can barely get out of the house with one baby never mind 3 or 4 more! I watched that programme on bbc3 about multiples a little while ago and one of the little boys on it used to escape into the bathroom and put his hands over his ears as he just wanted some peace and quiet (there were loads of kids in that family I think he was a triplet and there were about 4 other kids too though) so I am sure having siblings will help with any child's social skills. My son is 8 months and I felt really pressured into taking him to different groups as its often one of the first things I am asked by other mums and I felt like I was being a bad parent because I wasn't taking him to any, although I do have some close friends with kids of similar age. I started taking him to a couple, Baby Signing and Baby Yoga and he goes to a swimming lesson once a week. He seemed to hate them! He had as much interest in sitting on my lap mimicking signs as he would have had if I gave him a copy of War and Peace to read! He likes rough and tumble and just wanted to be down on the floor playing about (although this may be just my son as the other babies would sit there quietly looking like angels!). I also thought it would be a good way for me to meet other mums but some of the classes were a bit cliquey and the other mums would group themselves together and talk loudly about where they would all go for lunch without even saying hello to me which was a bit embarrassing for me and made me think I must look like a right miserable wotsit! I then went to a first time parents group arranged by the health visitors, it was a 4 week free class and I met some lovely mums and we stay in contact now. My son still goes swimming and I am going to try a baby gym class soon as I think he might enjoy it and also because he will be starting nursery in November and he is an only child and I want him to get used to other babies. If he had brothers and sisters and cousins etc I wouldn't feel like this though.

alowVera Wed 20-Jul-11 16:50:21

Why does DC4 need social groups if he/she has 3 almost 4 siblings?

JamieAgain Wed 20-Jul-11 16:51:37


IMO "socialising" babies and young toddlers is over-rated. Unless you mean "catching germs and learning to bite other children with a similar lack of self-control and empathy".

Later on, as they approach school age, it's necessary, but in a family with other siblings, no ...

lisianthus Wed 20-Jul-11 16:53:01


Whelk Wed 20-Jul-11 16:53:15

YANBU. I maintain that some of us and their dcs are just not playgroup types.
There's plenty of other opportunities for socialising with friends and families.

duchesse Wed 20-Jul-11 16:59:32

I think that by the time you get to No 4 + you realise that actually they don't wither away without all that crap. DD3 is getting virtually no playgroup time whatsoever, and does not appear to be suffering in any way. I don't have to put up with playgroup politics so it's win win all round.

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