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to move DS to a new nursery at nearly 3yo?

(47 Posts)
flamingofridays Wed 13-Feb-19 11:03:53

DS has attended the same nursery since 9 months old, he is now almost 3.

No issues with nursery, but we moved house to around 20 mins away. Had always planned to keep him at the same nursery as that's all he knows, and I work in the same town as nursery to I drive here anyway.

However, doing every single pick up and drop off is taking its toll on me, and I don't think the drive is doing DS any favours as he's falling asleep on the way home most nights.

We also realised that when he goes to school, none of the children he knows will be at the same school as him, and I don't think that's ideal for him.

We thought about moving him to a nursery which is a 5min walk from our house, and also DPS work.

I would drop him off on a morning (DP at work at crack of dawn) and DP could pick him up most nights, and me maybe once or twice a week. I would also get stuck in a lot less traffic, because I would be setting off 15 mins earlier from the town my work is in because I wouldn't have to stop at nursery.

The nursery we have in mind is actually now managed by the previous manager of our current nursery. She is fabulous and I trust her implicitly. It is also £25 a week cheaper, which is a bonus but not something im making a decision based on. We don't have the money now, so its not like we miss it.

it seems like a no brainer when you think about it with no emotion.

However, I am really getting distraught about it. I am wondering whether I am ruining my childs life by even considering this. This is the only nursery he has ever known, he has bonded with most of the staff (some are quite new) and the children. There are 4 especially wonderful women who have worked there since he started and he absolutely adores them and so do I. I would almost feel as though I was personally insulting them. In an ideal world I would be rich enough to hire one of them to be his nanny but unfortunately I cannot afford their wonderful services!

I have weighed up the pros and cons of each nursery and I just feel stuck. Its a real head vs heart decision, and although DP is v reassuring that we are not in fact going to scar our child for life and cost him £££ in therapy, I still don't know what to do.

On one hand, I keep him in the nursery he knows, and he is exhausted for the next 18 months (and so am I), but generally happy and settled. He however wont know a single child at his new school when he goes.

On the other, we move him, take him away from everything he knows, but he will hopefully settle and it will set him up a little better for school (its next to the primary school he will most likely go to, so environment / walk will be familiar) , and hopefully he may meet some other children who will go with him. I will also get a bit of a break and DP will get a little more time with DS which I know he would appreciate.

Can anyone tell me if they have done something similar at a similar age? or whether I really am being an awful and selfish parent?

thank you

MrsJayy Wed 13-Feb-19 11:07:25

Oh dear it is really troubiling you but it makes perfect sense to move him there is nothing in your post that shouts keep him at his nursery! Children going to pre school nursery is totally normal

Di11y Wed 13-Feb-19 11:10:13

move him!! it's a transition now but will make the school transition easier. maybe try to get phone numbers of a couple of favourite friends for play dates to ease the move.

Jebuschristchocolatebar Wed 13-Feb-19 11:11:54

We moved our eldest child twice becuase we moved house and he didn’t bat an eyelid. I felt really guilty and agonized over the moves but at 3 he barely noticed at all when he moved twice in one year.

BubblesBuddy Wed 13-Feb-19 11:14:30

Much better to move. No nursery child aged 3 has made life long friends. He will have a new routine and new faces at the pre school but it will be good prep for YR and given him a better introduction. So yes, move him. Many of us have done the same!

raviolidreaming Wed 13-Feb-19 11:14:52

Could you do split days between the two as a compromise? Even just for the short term, with a view of switching when you're confident he's settled in the new one?

Amy326 Wed 13-Feb-19 11:15:37

I haven’t been in this situation but you’re most definitely not awful or selfish, you’re trying really hard to consider the best choice for your child! I think I would move him, it sounds like it makes a lot of sense to do so. Have you been to visit the closer nursery to see if you like it? Why don’t you see if you can set up a visit on your own first and then a visit with your ds if you like it and see if he seems to like it there?

Divgirl2 Wed 13-Feb-19 11:16:00

Could you stagger it? So drop down to half and half at each for a few weeks and then make the switch? I don't think it's necessary (really, kids are so adaptable) but it might make you feel a little better.

We're in the process of moving hundreds of miles away so I know the mental anguish of tearing them away from everything they know. I doubt my DS will really care after a couple of days but it makes me very sad.

JellyBaby666 Wed 13-Feb-19 11:17:25

Its a move now VS a move later. No brainer personally - move him now. You all win, you, DS & DP, he won't hold it over you at aged 35 for moving him from that nursery! Life happens, he'll adapt. I moved countries at his age, and it took a few weeks but I adapted and it made each new change (new house/another move) a bit easier.

Dreamingofkfc Wed 13-Feb-19 11:17:26

Move him. I moved mine at that age due to house move. I was distraught saying goodbye but the kids barely looked back, just got on with it

ButtMuncher Wed 13-Feb-19 11:20:57

Definitely make the transition now. At this age they have friends they play with more, but don't necessarily identify it with friendships. And as your child has already adapted to a nursery setting, he'll know the routine. It's a tough one and one I know all too well as I had to do something very similar with my DS when we moved. Would there be a possibility maybe he could have a settling in session? I know it's more commonly used for babies but it might take your mind off the worry if one morning or day he goes to the new nursery to get used to the switch.

gambaspilpil Wed 13-Feb-19 11:21:14

We moved our DS when he was 3 to a pre school nursery. It was the best thing we ever did. We were anxious too as he loved his old nursery and all the staff and I was worried he wouldn't cope with the change. However he enjoys it and it is just up the road from us to so no rushing around. I have no doubt your little one will be fine and if it is a more local nursery the DC there may end up being his school chums too

ButtMuncher Wed 13-Feb-19 11:21:52

Also, he's probably that age where you can try and explain to him the situation - not sure how verbal your 3 year old is but with my 2.5 year old we can sort of explain things to him and he understands to some extent. If you have those conversations now you can set that expectation up.

flamingofridays Wed 13-Feb-19 11:28:38

thank you all. I could cry honestly. I mean I better not because I am sat at my desk!! but I could!

we are going to go see the nursery this week if we can, I know that the quality of care will be excellent as like I say I know the manager, I know her standards and I very much doubt she'd let them drop.

both nurseries are sure starts, DS key worker said the other nursery would likely offer as many settling in sessions as we wanted, as that's what they do. DS had 2 there, but he was 9 months old and not as aware as he obviously is now!

I think a lot of it is my own anxiety, he's a happy, clever and confident little boy. he's not shy, and he does adapt well.

I worried like mad when we moved house, and he's been absolutely fine. Not phased at all.

I'm not even worried about him losing friendships with the children, though he is good friends with them im confident he will make new friends. I am worried about his bonds with the adults. He has been so so cared for and looked after there and he genuinely LOVES them. I am worried he wont have that again. But, all good things do have to come to an end as they say.

Everyone ive spoken to has said move him but I just have a little doubt in the back of my mind, that I will do the wrong thing, and he'll be sad, and nervous, and hate nursery. Though I suppose if that did happen I could try and get a place at the nursery he's at now, they're not usually 100% full.

I did think about staggering it, so 3 days here, 2 days at new nursery but I worried it would be too confusing and that I would also get confused and take him to the wrong place/ get mixed up with pick ups etc. I am not totally brainless but often run on autopilot!

flamingofridays Wed 13-Feb-19 11:29:34

*butt he's really verbal, he understands everything we say to him and can hold a full conversation, so I think if I explained he would get it, but not sure that he'd get the full extent of it IE you will never see these people who you love again.

Sosadtowatch Wed 13-Feb-19 11:32:07

I would move him. He would adapt quickly and when he starts school having nursery friends in his class will make it soo much easier for him.

Mine had 5 nursery friends in her class and we had no issues with starting school at all. i appreciate this may not be the case for all though.

altiara Wed 13-Feb-19 11:36:31

I moved my DD age 3 when we moved to rented and then again when we moved to the house we bought. Then I also put her in preschool for mornings on the days she wasn’t at nursery to get to know local children, then soon after she went to school! She just got on with it. It did mean she wasn’t at all bothered by starting school!!

waterrat Wed 13-Feb-19 11:41:20

OP this is a normal age for a lot of kids to go to pre school .

I absolutely feel for you - I moved my 3 year old from her very much loved childminder in very similar circumstances - so she went from being with a woman she loved like a grandmother to going to pre school every day - doing 9 til 3 each day.

I WEPT. I cannot even put into words the pain I felt at letting go of that stage in her life! Everyone thought I was bonkers! It was like a trauma for me.

I think it is about the real sadness of realising nothing in life lasts forever - and our childrens lives are transient and fleeting. Also - I think because our children are so precious that of course childcare is something we invest huge emotion in.

You know your little one was safe each day and now you hve to remove that certainty from both your lives.

BUt op - it sounds like a a no brainer! Go for it and I think you will be surpirsed how fine it will all be.

Damntheman Wed 13-Feb-19 11:51:46

I moved my son when he was 3. He was previously in a very small nursery and was the oldest by almost a year. It was beginning to show in his development that he had no peers or older children to learn from!

It was a tough couple of weeks to adjust, he is a sensitive child. BUT so so worth it! He came on in leaps and bounds once he had settled, is now prepared for school sized classes and made several great friends who will follow him to the same school in August. (kids start school at six here).

Please do it! It'll make your life easier AND your child's.

anniehm Wed 13-Feb-19 11:52:30

I would suggest it's a good option but to move him in September when the older kids leave for school, then he get a full year there as a "big kid"

flamingofridays Wed 13-Feb-19 11:57:39

thanks all, you all talk a lot of sense.

this really resonated with me waterrat

I think it is about the real sadness of realising nothing in life lasts forever - and our childrens lives are transient and fleeting. Also - I think because our children are so precious that of course childcare is something we invest huge emotion in

i'm a really nostalgic, emotional person and I think about the past a lot, in a good way, fondly. But, I do find this makes it hard for me to move on.

Our old house wasn't great, no proper garden to play in, horrible neighbours, no parking etc etc. It made so much sense to move house. I still cant drive past it without feeling sad. Its bizarre! I didn't love it that much when I lived in it, it seems my glasses are extremely rose tinted.

If/when we move his nursery I suspect i'll be the same, and sad about all the good times, and forget completely about what a pain in the arse it is, getting stuck in traffic, doing everything myself, rushing everywhere (paying more!). But I must remind myself that the reasons for doing this are actually really good ones, for everyone's wellbeing. For our family life.

I always second guess myself when it comes to parenting, im so indecisive and everyone at nursery seems to think I am an excellent parent who has it together, and Its all a façade, behind closed doors I'm nearly crying at work over a nursey move like a child myself!

i'm just really worried that it wont work out, and that I will have just made everything worse. The thing is, the only way to know if that will happen is to try!

Thishatisnotmine Wed 13-Feb-19 12:03:46

I know how you feel! We moved house but as dc are only in two days, we can justify the journey. When dc1 starts school in September we have to move dc2, it makes no sense to stay at that nursery. I am so sad about it! I love our nursery, no others I've seen are coming anywhere close.

But echoing PPs, it sound like you need to make the move, and doing it now will definitely be better than waiting a few months, the chage (I think) will get harder as they get a bit bigger.

legolimb Wed 13-Feb-19 12:05:50

It will be fine - and sounds like it makes perfect sense for many of the reasons you mention.

I changed my DS' childcare provider numerous times. He went to two different childminders (who were friends though, so he knew the other mindees anyway). At least three nurseries and out of school clubs.
He also changed primary school twice.

All these due to house moves/job changes. He is now 21 and living away at university and seems unaffected.

Don't make it seem like a huge deal and DC will be fine. It's just life - things change.

Wavingwhiledrowning Wed 13-Feb-19 12:16:15

We moved DD at 2.5 years for similar reasons. I was equally worried she'd miss the adults that she clearly had bonded with. But if anything, she's developed a stronger bond with her new key carer. I wondered whether it might be because she needed more reassurance at first so relied on them more rather than the relationship and routine developing more gradually.

Like your DS, our DD is very articulate so we explained the move in a positive way to her and she just ended up excited about it. Personally I wouldn't dwell on the fact he won't see the old staff again. He probably won't notice that much anyway. Children are really resilient and adaptable. Ours often talk about their old nursery and pre school but just in a matter of fact way rather than with any emotions attached.

ButtMuncher Wed 13-Feb-19 12:31:43

@flamingofridays I find with my DS just having a chat about it sometimes sow seeds of expectation. Eg I tell him tomorrow is Monday and it's nursery day, he'll see his friends, and then in the morning he'll ask to see them. I never realised just how much he understood until I started having those 'preemptive' conversations.

It sounds like your little boy is lovely and will adapt fine, but I totally know how you feel - I think things like this are harder on us as parents than they are on the children!

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