To wonder why I never learn my lesson about the local hv baby clinic....(124 Posts)
What is it about them (our local, have lived elsewhere near good ones)?
Ours are just awful, yet I still took my baby after exactly the same experience with my other kids...
Big room, first I just walk in (one other mum in there) to be told I must wait to be called in... So sit on chair outside, she follows me out, my arse glances the plastic and she says "come in". Ok.... Done the dance
Go to the first mat to change, "oh no we queue the babies starting here" . No other babies are present, ok....so I move along and use another.
Weigh baby, watch wrong centile be plotted...ok, saves that chat about weight gain...
Finally see hv, say I'd like to ask about dd's squint "oh she doesn't have one". She does, showed photos to make it clearer. "Well even if I referred her they'd say just wait and see" so I asked can you refer her? "No, only GPs can". Ok...wasted a protracted chat there!
Then clinic has begun to fill up, row of mums has formed and are listening now ( fair enough not much else to do). Booming voice looking at red book, oh her sister has (insert multiple referrals and condition). Is she looked after properly??? (Very loud). Er... No we keep her under the stairs...bye now. "Can I have your mobile number to call you?" Prefer not thanks...
I found them very odd. I only went a couple of times, I couldn't see the point (but then my two were thankfully very healthy and fed like there was no tomorrow). I asked my friend why she kept going and she thought it was compulsory! She was very relieved when I said it wasn't - we went for coffee and cake instead, far more useful
It was my one and only visit for dd, as I presumed they could refer for a squint and it saved a GP trip!
My babies are midgets and their charts are practically straight lines so I know they are not for us
Mine have always been really good. I'd heard horror stories but that hasn't been my experience at all, HVs are lovely and the clinic is nice and relaxed. No weird jobsworths about queueing
DC are no longer children, but back in the day, one of the health visitors I had was always pissed. She was also the one, after solemnly accepting a cup of imaginary tea from DD2, asked 'does she do imaginative play?'
The other one was slightly better, but was annoyed that DD1, when asked 'can you see the yellow sock?' didn't point to said sock in picture. DD1 replied 'yes.' Apparently that was not the correct response, and when I pointed out she hadn't asked DD1 to point to the picture, she got shirty. That whole visit, which was some sort of assessment, saw her getting progressively hotter under the collar as DD1 continued to answer the question she had been asked, which was not the response the HV wanted!
Frankly, I found them annoying at best and overbearing at worst.
Our clinic was fairly good and friendly though only if you were looking for weighing. Any actual advice and the HVs there really didn't have a clue. I asked a simple question about introduction of meat when weaning and they didn't know. Also ds gained weight well although at around 3 months dropped a night feed and although he still gained weight since previous weighing, it wasn't at the rate he had been previously. They actually suggested I started waking him up to take an extra feed. Waking a child who is starting to sleep well and is still gaining weight
I'm not see they're right about the squint referral...I was worried about one in ds and I'm almost positive it was the HV who referred us. Although that was during a scheduled home visit at 12 months and not during a clinic so maybe that changes things
YANBU. I have NEVER understood the people on MN who say "Oh go and ask the HV about that...(insert worrying symptoms which need a GP)...
See the bloody doctor!
I liked mine, set me up with a toddler group that she ran at her church (with no Jesus loves you pressure involved!), met really good friends there, helped me through a bout of PND, butted out when I didn't want/need her through two more DCs, gathered toddler group mums old stuff for her clients that were struggling financially.
Yup lovely, I think they get a bad rap on here for a necessary job. I imagine in abuse cases a HV will be the only one with access to see it start.
She did say tbf "we're not allowed to refer anymore". So someone somewhere may have started refusing them with good reason...
One always refers to my older dd as "the poor thing", whilst dd runs around giggling as high as a kite
My friend had an obviously Autistic 2 year old...even without prior knowledge, an outsider could see something wasn't right...her HV said "Oh he's fine!"
He's quite severely Autistic.
My mate had her head slightly in the sand about his development and had her brother not gently pushed her to the GP, she'd have waited a year till nursery!
Some are wonderful, I've met a fair few through work.
However my local ones appear to be the ones nowhere else would accept. Sometimes a cultural becomes ok in areas, when elsewhere standards are far higher. Personally I'd monitor and give warnings to a hv who persistently couldn't correctly plot centiles as it's a pretty good indicator
I have been incredibly lucky with my HVs. I've had about 4 different ones and they were all lovely.
I have met some wishy washy ones in our area though, but fortunately not assigned to me.
Sounds really bizarre.
My hv clinic is lovely.
As soon as they saw ds was being really difficult she suggested she came round for a chat and had loads of suggestions.
She was the one who encouraged me to go back to the doctors when they were fobbing me off and even rang them one time and said "we have advised her (me) to go to you. Stop asking for her to come and see us first"
As soon as she saw a hint of depression she didn't announce it loudly but got me into a separate room and just kept dropping gentle hints until I broke down and admitted I couldn't cope sometimes. This was not followed by a I knew it smugness but a sympathetic you are doing the best you can but I think you ought to see a doctor for a bit more help.
I feel sorry for women who feel they can't turn to their HV
We had a horrendous HV to start with... Then we changed to the most AMAZING HV. DS2 was born with lots of disabilities and was a failure to thrive baby. Both HV & MW were great with gentle support and lots of information and hand holding if needed. Our equally amazing GP who came out on her day off to assess DS.
They are not all bad .... Honestly. With DC 3 we swapped to another HV who was also really good and followed us up even out of the area.
Mine said my daughter didn't breastfeed for long enough each time despite tracking the 91st centile since day one.
Mine was in a very culturally diverse are of inner London. At a baby weaning workshop we were strongly advised not to feed them "Exotic foods" as, apparently, once they start, the children will develop a taste for them which will be difficult to break.
And what are these exotic foods? Avocado, yams and sweet potato featured strongly on the list.
I think it's so bit and miss some of the hv's I've seen have been great there are others in the team that I actively avoid but I suppose that's life.
Baby clinic is a bit bizarre though. They used to look at my like some kind of alien when I rocked up with a new born and two toddlers. They used to ask me stupid inappropriate questions.
Dd2 suffered with febrile convulsions and everytime she went to a and e we would get a follow up call from hv which is obviously a good thing but I got the most stupid hv in the world asking if they'd put dd on medication for them? I asked her what medication she thought she should be on (there's nothing that can be done about them) oh I don't know there must be something they can give her!!!
It was about the 25th time she had been to a and e do you not think we had bloody asked the doctors this after the first couple of times!!
My HV were hit and miss. I had one I liked who was quite no nonsense and believed mothers knew best. I also had a couple of not so good ones. I remember when dd was about 12 months I fed her homemade casseroles, soups, risottos etc. which she ate well. The Hv insisted I should keep all the food groups seperate and present them on a plate not touching each other. Then I had another when ds was 2, he had about five words and I was concerned but she keep asking me if he joined words to make sentences or if he could name his colours (funnily enough his five words weren't colours).
I only went a few times with DS2....he was being treated for clubfoot, which meant a full leg cast until he was 4 months old. I went to clinic and the HV got really shitty with me because she couldn't weigh and plot him with this cast on. I was on my knees with PND, adjusting to finding out he had this disability when he was born (it was missed on the scans) and she made me feel guilty for it not enabling her to do her job.
She did me a favour really, as I came home upset and then my tiger mama instinct properly kicked in.
We haven't seen them since.
With DS1 it was a mixed bag....a couple of HV worth their weight in gold, a couple who shouldn't have been let near new mothers....
Just occasionally (I won't say rarely, because I've met too many of them), you get a HCP who seems to be of the opinion that all mothers, in fact everyone who is not them, is part of the ignorant masses, needing to be coralled and put in their place. I've met these people both as a service user and through the voluntary work I do and they invariably bring out the worst in me. it's not just annoyance, it's the fact that they're so fucking officious and patronising and the people on the receiving end of their hideous attitude is quite often feeling quite vulnerable and fragile.
I had two - a student HV who was worth her weight in gold and a very experienced HV who had a reputation locally as being terrible. She gave me terrible advice every time I saw her and made me feel awful. For some reason she would leave the room whenever she saw my friend though - very odd.
The student HV was very encouraging with my PND and helped me a huge amount. She would often just phone to see how I was doing that day/week (not in an assessment way). When I was new to the area she encouraged me to go to baby groups and would wait for me beforehand so that I didn't have to go in alone. I met some good friends because of her. I was gutted when she finished her placement.
Sorry but at 'my babies are midgets' and 'we keep her under the stairs'
Carry on OP, you sound like you're all right!
I had an amazing hv with dd 13 years ago. She had actually retired and came back to work during a massive staff shortage. She was very matter of fact answered questions properly and despite being older generation had kept her knowledge bang up to date and was far more on the ball than the others. She was also warm and a huge support when I was struggling to bf dd. They were very good when ds1 was born and offered to just stay put my way but the door is always open kind of thing because I'd had a baby before so we're there if I needed but fine if I didn't.
Moved area had ds2 and they were like the op's experience. One tries to get a student to tell me I HAD to attend and appointment when the midwife signed me off. Told the student politely but firmly this wasn't the case. Hv came on the phone very defensive at first told me I MUST attend this appointment. Told her would come to clinic but on a day convenient for me, my dad had just had triple bypass was hoping to be let out of hospital that day so I won't be there. Then lectured me on what a useful resource the hv service was to which I agreed that for some yes it was bit was also not compulsory and I knew where they were thank you. Went to clinic once the only other time was for vacs and never ever did like that woman or the advice I would hear her give other mums.
I fucking hate baby clinic. Crock of patronising shit.
My hv for dd1 told me that she was fine when she went floppy, unresponsive and dropped off feeding at 10 days old. Luckily I was already on my way to hospital when she rang. Consultant took two minutes to start her on iv antibiotics. Grr.
Join the discussion
Please login first.