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PFB or normal precaution for childcare?

(120 Posts)
sparechange Tue 14-May-13 11:23:19

I got an email from a friend who is getting married soon, complaining about another friend and I can't decide who is right on this. Opinions please!

Friend A is getting married with a small-ish do (60 people). During the meal, she has arranged for a couple of the staff from her DDs nursery to come and look after/entertain the children in a separate room. The invitation is slightly vague in so far as it doesn't say the children must be left in the room, but doesn't say they are welcome to join the meal (relevant later!). This isn't intentional - she just assumed most people would rather eat in peace given the option and it didn't occur to her that people would think they couldn't have their children sat with them if they preferred.

We both have a friend B. I've never been hugely close to her, but we ended up living near each other so probably see more of each other than we would under any other circumstances.

Friend B has emailed Friend A to ask if the can share the names and qualifications of the nursery workers who will be looking after the children, and also the name of the nursery, because she'd like to phone them up to speak to them - I guess get a reference?

Friend A has got really cross about this, because she thinks it is questioning her ability to find good childcare for her children and also thinks this is Friend A passively aggressively asking for her child to stay with them during the meal, which would have been fine if she had just asked outright.

I can sort of see Friend B's point that she doesn't want any old person looking after her (PFB) DD, but is it totally OTT to ask for their references? They'll be looking after the children for a couple of hours, tops, and the idea is they'll be supervised with toys, books and DVDs. I don't know the age range of the children, but would guess at 2-6?

On top of this, Friend A has asked me to bring it up with Friend B. I think I'm going to stay out of it and let them sort it out directly, but I just wanted some other opinions before I wade in on one side or anotheirng

Tee2072 Tue 14-May-13 11:27:18

I agree, stay out of it! Tell friend A to speak to friend B directly.

CookieLady Tue 14-May-13 11:31:54

I'd stay out of it.

To be fair I wouldn't want someone I didn't know looking after my dc and therefore I'd also ask for more info.

Llanbobl Tue 14-May-13 11:32:16

Back away slowly from the situation. .......then run like billy-o, this has disaster written all over it.

Friend is (IMO) being PFB....... Have been to weddings where a child's entertainer had been laid on in another room to keep kids occupied during meal/speeches - they were feed kid friendly food as well which was great - it was like a party for them smile

The bride seems to be trying to do the right thing by having children at wedding but allowing patents the choice of some kid free time to enjoy a meal and chat. They need to sort this out between them or you're going to be the bad guy in all of this.

district12 Tue 14-May-13 11:32:53

I agree, stay out of it.
Not sure all children will be happy in another room with complete strangers though, kind of see friend B's point a little bit.

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack Tue 14-May-13 11:36:07

I would stay out of it to be honest and let them sort it out together.

However, I am sort of with friend A - I am sure she has got reputable childcare sorted out and am sure that friend B can pop into the room at any time to make sure the kids are ok.

Personally, I think it is great idea to have some childcare sorted out AS LONG AS they weren't forced to go and could stay with their parents if they wanted to.

Sounds a bit precious to me but then I suppose our kids are our most precious thing aren't they smile

squeakytoy Tue 14-May-13 11:36:36

stay out of it, but B is being ridiculously PFB..

Dawndonna Tue 14-May-13 11:40:27

I agree, stay out of it. She is being really PFB, though!

DewDr0p Tue 14-May-13 11:42:43

Definitely stay well out of it!!

Does Friend B know that the staff are from Friend A's dc's nursery? If so she is being ridiculously PFB!

Startail Tue 14-May-13 11:46:45

Yes stay out of it, B is being stupid.

I think it's a lovely idea. As long as the bride accepts that, while most DCs would far rather mess about with their peers than sit in a formal meal, a few will cling to the bottom of mums dress.

DD1 would have joined in slightly shyly, DD2 always chooses her peers over adults. DD2's DF was still impossibly shy at 10.

foreverondiet Tue 14-May-13 11:47:20

Stay out of it, but for children under primary school age (ie under 5) I would also want to know what the ratios were roughly - would have thought one person could cope with up to 4 small kids? (ie would want to know that it wasn't one adult and 20 small kids etc). Wouldn't care about qualifications if I was in next room and would check every so often that all was ok.

Over 5 (ie able to sit and watch DVD) wouldn't care about ratios.

So person B being a bit unreasonable - I think correct response by A to B is:- "there will be X adults to X children, and they are suitably qualified BUT if you prefer to leave your children at home then that's fine as well. Also fine if you bring your own babysitter to look after your child in the child's room. But sorry no places laid out for children in the dinner"

But tell A you don't want to be involved!

EggsMichelle Tue 14-May-13 11:47:22

Back away very slowly! If the children are going to be in the same building, just in another room I don't see the issue. Definitely being PFB.

Branleuse Tue 14-May-13 11:48:35


sparechange Tue 14-May-13 11:49:27

Thanks everyone, I don't really have any inclination to get involved, other than perhaps to tell Friend B that A is going to speak to her regarding the childcare stuff. I don't know her well enough to tell her anything else...

DewDrOp, yes, she knows that.
I haven't got the invitation with me for the exact wording, but it says something like 'DD will be hosting her own do in the room next door, ably-assisted by a couple of ladies from [DD's] nursery. Games, toys and food will be laid on, so please let us know numbers'

Floggingmolly Tue 14-May-13 12:00:26

So frend A's own child will be hosting her own little party?
Friend B is being an ill mannered idiot who would be better off leaving her precious angels at home. Providing she can find a CRB'd babysitter, of course.

sparechange Tue 14-May-13 12:01:52

Well her DD is not quite 2, so not sure how much 'hosting' she'll be doing, but yes, the idea is she is next door with all our children, while we eat and listen to speeches!

scaevola Tue 14-May-13 12:04:26

Stand clear.

It seems to me that either friend A is correct and so you becoming involved will just lead to you being tangled in a mess. Or Child B has some additional needs that the mother has not made generally known but which she does want to discuss with staff beforehand (without troubling the bride beyond contact info), in which case it is private and raising it will again only lead to difficulty.

sparechange Tue 14-May-13 12:07:08

Scaevola, no, B's child doesn't have any special needs that any of us are aware of.

I wanted to make my initial post as neutral as possible to get impartial opinions, but I find her very PFB. I was going to list a few examples, but I think they'll all 'out' me..!

noseymcposey Tue 14-May-13 12:16:18

foreveronadiets response is a good one!

I think it's a lovely idea and a good solution all round and she really isn't accountable for answering friend B's questions!

Katnisscupcake Tue 14-May-13 12:18:00

Agree, let them sort it out between them.

But I do think Friend B is definitely being PFB. I have a PFB (DD) and would be thrilled if I thought that someone (who is clearly qualified if they work in a nursery) would be looking after DD while I could have a relaxing meal!

Alternatively, Friend B could go and eat with the children!

MidniteScribbler Tue 14-May-13 12:22:09

I think it sounds like a brilliant idea! If the carers are suitably appropriate types (and if I was close enough to someone to go to their wedding, then I'd be happy to take my friends word for it) then I'd be happily dropping DS before heading in to the bar adults party. A lot more fun for the kids, and with the parents only next door, presumably they'll be able to come in and out if they really need anything or want to be part of a particular part of the reception such as dancing or cake cutting.

I wouldn't be handing out the names and details of the workers (other than to tell Friend B that they are fully qualified) because the nursery do not need B ringing up hassling them about their workers. There's also a good chance that this is a quiet cash in hand type deal for the workers, and it could be a risk to their employment if it gets back to the employers that it is going on.

PeppermintPasty Tue 14-May-13 12:27:15

PFB nut.

Having said that, I went to a wedding last year where they laid on so called entertainment for the children in a separate room. Twas a boring disaster with rubbish food. I thought then that the wallies "entertaining" the children couldn't possibly be qualified. However, it never crossed my mind to ask or care

DragonMamma Tue 14-May-13 12:29:03

Definitely being PFB

I had wedding nannies at our wedding and nobody asked anything of the sort. They were only too glad to eat their meal in peace and have the kids entertained.

It was a proper wedding creche service though so appropriate ratios were stuck to.

SolomanDaisy Tue 14-May-13 12:29:17

How old is friend B's PFB? Does she use childcare? If she has a very young child who has never been left with anyone but family, I can see why she'd be nervous. I'd also be nervous if there were going to be two people looking after a group of say 20 2-6 year-olds. The normal thing to do would be to call friend a and discuss it all though.

ShowOfHands Tue 14-May-13 12:32:05

I don't think it matters if it's PFB. A lot of people have anxieties around leaving their children and sometimes it's a bit of a wrench just leaving them with grandparents. In an unfamiliar location, with unfamiliar other dc (other parents popping in and out too, lots of toing and froing), then why shouldn't person B try and work out in her head how this might work. Perhaps it's even a kindness that she's not hassling the bride for all this information and is happy to go and do it herself. I have a friend who works in child protection and she would do this sort of thing. She very carefully vets every childcare arrangement and will refuse certain situations but she has seen some awful things which skews her perception somewhat. But it comes from an honest place and to call her PFB would be derogatory. Her anxiety is very real.

All that said, it's not your place to get involved. The bride either wants to give out the info or she doesn't. Friend B is PA or she isn't. None of this is your concern tbh.

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