Childcare disaster(43 Posts)
My DS is 12 months old and I’m going back to work after Xmas. He has separation anxiety but is happy for me to leave the room, plays independently at home and happy to be left with close family. I don’t think it’s anything particularly bad but he’s my first child so I don’t really have anyone to compare him to!
Being a smug, organised person we chose a nursery for him when he was a couple of months old. A few weeks ago we had his settling in session and he was very upset. I was called to collect him early and realised I had doubts about the setting for DS (too many babies, not enough staff, too noisy).
Decided to use a childminder and found one nearby who did lots of outdoor activities. Suggested some ideas for how to settle DS which I think she did and I left him for an hour. When I went to pick him up he was calm and not particularly bothered by me coming back. She was gushing about how well he’d done. Great! Filled in mounds of paperwork and paid up.
Now I have received a text saying she can’t take DS on as he needed one to one attention and she can’t provide that. Isn’t that normal for a First settling in session in a strange environment with a stranger?
I’m not sure how to respond, AIBU to think a baby would need one to one attention on a settling in session? Two options have now failed and I imagine this will just make the anxiety worse for him! I’m not sure if I’ve done something to offend her, but I can’t think what. I would have expected ideally a face to face discussion or a phone call, not just a text. AIBU?
A settling in session may be at a quieter time of day but I would not expect it to be 1:1 care, as that simply isn't the reality of most childminding provision. Childminders will often care for several children under age 5, plus children aged 5+ who are at school most of the day. It's just like a family setup, a baby will get a lot of attention but they won't get 1:1.
Not sure why your childminder is now deciding it won't work.
Sounds like an excuse, maybe she was asked to mind another child she thought would be easier? An older one maybe?
I wouldn't have expected 1-1 care in a childminder setting. Bit strange she let you pay and fill in the contracts then decided to let you know she couldn't have him. I would be asking if that's the actual reason (I've had experiences where we were promised a space, then CM ghosted me two weeks before DD was due to start) and how soon the money is going to be paid back
That's really strange. An experienced childminder would understand the level of commitment to look after a 12 month old and the extra attention required initially. (not 1:1 but would expect more tears, extra effort to distract/entertain at first)
Maybe she hasn't watched someone that age for a while and has realised the work involved and changed her mind. Who knows.
I left ds at nursery 2 days a week at 7 months, they were lovely he had a key worker and all the staff were really nice to him. I now use a childminder as I like the home environment, it's like being at his auntie's rather than the older rooms at nursery.
Try another nursery or childminder, there is a suitable one out there. Understand the stress though, hopefully something sorted soon.
Yes completely agree that we didn’t expect or even want 1 to 1 care for him as we want him to learn to be with other children, take turns etc but I thought it wouldn’t have been unusual to be unsettled without one to one attention on a First session.
We picked a quiet time of day and she had her assistant there so it wasn’t as though it was the before or after school period.
It just seemed strange to me after her response to how the session went when I spoke to her in person.
Now to start all over again!
Did she message you after you had given her the paperwork you had filled in? The only thing that stood out is that you say you gave her tips of how to settle him and then filled in lots of paperwork. Is there any chance, as a FTM of a baby who has struggled to settle the first time you left him in childcare (i.e. Understandably!) that you have been a bit OTT with the instructions of what your ds needs and she doesn't feel able to meet your demands??
Maybe the situation with one of her own children or existing mindees has changed. I have had it happen to me.
Child I cared for was waiting for a formal diagnosis and i had no idea what level of support I would have to put in place or what to expect about their expected development when I signed another child up to start later that year.
Unfortunately I had to cancel the contract with the child due to start to ensure I was meeting the needs of the children I was already responsible for. I didn't want to do it, I lost a lot of money because of it but it was the right thing for everyone involved.
How frustrating. My son was hard work for me and also to settle with childminder. The first childminder gave up after 4 weeks. She wasn't very experienced but seemed really nice. She said he was too much. I was left stuck and thankfully found another child minder who was experienced and put the effort in. He still goes now he's 3.5 years old and she drops him at preschool, his sister 1.5 also goes. They both love it there.
I doubt the 2 settling sessions will make a lasting impact on him but know they will have on you. I'd look for an experienced childminder and explain what's happened! Good luck
She asked for info on what he likes etc but I don’t know, maybe it was OTT.
I just filled in the paperwork that she gave me which seemed a lot to me- lots of developmental questions etc, it took me ages!
I just thought it was weird that she was so positive and then out of the blue I got this very negative text. I would have thought she would have spoken to me face to face or at least called.
Have you spoken to her about her change of heart? Could be worth trying to understand what has prompted her to decide not to go ahead, even though she is unlikely to change her mind
I had this with a CM with DD1 at 12 months. Turns out she's a dick and I was very lucky!
I panicked but found a lovely CM who DD loved. The nursery I had originally selected ended up closing down less than 6 months later But all ended well for DD1 so third time lucky was true for me.
Is there another nursery? I had a nursery that didn't work but then found one that was perfect. It needs to be right for your child.
It's easy to say but try not to worry. For whatever reason she wasn't the right person for your ds. You don't want someone looking after him who doesn't want to, or who thinks that the level of care you expect is too much. Better to know that now than after he has settled with her and you have started back at work. let some of the childcarers on here give you some pointers on how much info they would need or expect for a new minded? I cringe when I think about things I said to nursery when ds1 first started . Ds3 I told them his name and ran away!!!
On a positive note she said he settled with her so he can do it! I hope you find someone soon.
I had a bad experience with child minder too. I spoke to her on phone and she confirmed that she had availability for my two children aged 4 and 9 after school for three sessions per week. We went to meet her and she was glowing about how well behaved they were and how looking forward to having them come to the home and how they would play well with her children. We continued to talk whilst they all played outside and I explained that youngest was dyspraxic. She asked this meant she had to watch him all the time when in garden. I said yes and she said that this was fine
She text me an hour later to say that she was no longer going to be child minding as it did not fit in with her family. However, I continued to see her collecting children from the school. I managed to find another excellent childminder who was happy to accommodate .
My first thought was the same as 3boys - have you given instructions that just aren't compatible with the rest of her routine with the other mindees? Give her a ring.
Though I have never understood how a CM can settle a baby for naps while also looking after toddlers. I found it complicated enough with my 2.
I imagine this will just make the anxiety worse for him!
Eh? He will be oblivious!
this is all reassuring thank you! Everyone I know has children who settled straight into nursery with the standard two sessions.
It's difficult as we are restricted to one area as we move with work so childcare has to be near home and to be honest there aren't that many options but I will look further.
You are right - better to find out now than in a month's time when I'm already back at work.
It'll be something completely different like she's had a better offer or she's had a think and doesn't want to do babies, or something like that.
Don't worry about it, just look for someone else. It's quite annoying of her but it's her right to change her mind.
I put my pair into nursery part time at 14 months, it took them at least a month to settle in. They really enjoyed it after a few months but it wasn't easy at first. The right care will support your DC and help him settle in.
Take what other people say about how well their child settled in with a pinch of salt. This is up there with babies sleeping through the night and potty training for stealth boasting.
I was let down similarly by a childminder, and it worked out for the best for us, my son ended up being looked after by an amazing mum and daughter team who we’re still very close to now, and ds is 15! I hope you have the same experience as we did
It is much easier when people are honest and upfront about things! Glad you found somewhere suitable in the end.
Yes it’s unfortunate but I wouldn’t try and talk around a CM who is flakey at best - sounds like a bad match so onwards and upwards. After 2 dc we’ve been through a fair number of childcare options - no nanny shares in your area?
I suppose what I need to know is
1) am I OTT / annoying - hopefully I can change this
2) is my child unusually difficult
3) has she found someone wanting more days / an 'easier' age
then decide on a plan
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