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To be upset and cross with territorial Beavers leader?

(28 Posts)
greatwhiteshark Tue 28-Apr-09 09:45:15

We home educate. One of the reasons is so that our children can detach from us in their own time, as they are emotionally ready to do so. DD1 (nearly 6) has been desperate to join something like Beavers for ages, so I signed her up and we went along last week. She was very shy at first, and clung to me, but I sat down with her in the 'dam' (much to Fox's obvious annoyance!) and before half the session was over, she was joining in fine.

I asked Seal (Fox's husband) if I could continue staying a few more sessions - even offered to make drinks or something as someone on here suggested to me a while back - and he said Fox might not like it 'cos she's quite territorial.

So Fox rang me last night to say that I can't stay because of insurance and CRB checks and I need to just leave DD1 crying angry. We've left it that I'll come in and stay until she's settled and not tell her I'm planning to leave (DD1 will not join in if I warn her I'm going to do this!) but say I've just got to pop outside with the baby and will wait for her to finish once she's joining in. I've told Fox I'll do this for a couple of weeks and see how it goes.

But I'm really cross about this. I know DD1, and I'm not asking to stay because I'm overprotective, but because I know that forcing her to stay without me will be counterproductive - it will cause a huge backwards step in her bid for independence so if this compromise plan doesn't work, then it'll mean DD1 doesn't do Beavers!

So AIBU to be annoyed about this? (I'm sure some people will say I am, but desperately hoping at least a few will agree with me and understand where I'm coming from!)

Next step is to research the rather more sympathetic woodcraft folk in case Beavers doesn't work out!

justaboutspringtime Tue 28-Apr-09 09:48:44

Message withdrawn

greatwhiteshark Tue 28-Apr-09 09:49:50

But other people said their Beaver leaders didn't have a problem with them staying for a few sessions. And what about preschools and nurseries etc.?

justaboutspringtime Tue 28-Apr-09 09:51:58

Message withdrawn

greatwhiteshark Tue 28-Apr-09 09:52:14

And besides, it's not about me not wanting to play by the rules of beavers, it's about trying to further their aims - getting children doing things independently! Fox's problem with parents helping their children ease their way into Beavers might mean that a whole load of children never get the chance to be involved in Beavers because they get put off at the first hurdle.

GypsyMoth Tue 28-Apr-09 09:53:35

my experience is that these things cant run without parent helpers! in fact my ds cubs pack may close as nobody can help much,they have a helper rota!

also,aren't they restricted by child to adult ratio's? cant you get crb checkd and help? they surely need parents when it comes to fundraising

on the other hand,i dont see why they should just let you stay and nobody else. most kids of this age are used to be left at school anyway and dont bat an eyelid!

PrimulaVeris Tue 28-Apr-09 09:54:02

I think the Beaver leader is correct, actually. I act as occasional parent helper at my ds' cubs and had to have a full CRB check.

Likewise if you are parent helper at nursery, school or anywhere else - you have to be CRB checked. You may find the same situation with Woodcraft Folk or any other similar organisation.

justaboutspringtime Tue 28-Apr-09 09:54:08

Message withdrawn

GypsyMoth Tue 28-Apr-09 09:57:15

maybe this "detaching from you in their own time" thing is starting to backfire on you a bit?

mrsjammi Tue 28-Apr-09 09:57:22

Message withdrawn

plug Tue 28-Apr-09 09:58:40

The fact that dd1 is unwilling to go in by herself would suggest that she's not ready for something like this tbh. Beavers is run by volunteers and my experience of such organisations and activities is that you're expected to fit in with them, rather than the other way round IYKWIM. For example, if a child won't get in the pool for their half hour swimming lesson with 5 other children, the teacher will not spend time coaxing and cajoling them in and will also not let parents sit on the side. If the child cannot get in without a parent standing by, the child cannot swim IME.

That said, I do understand your frustration but maybe use this as a way of explaining to dd1 that different places have different rules and she has to abide by those rules if she wants to go.

Merrylegs Tue 28-Apr-09 10:01:59

Difficult, isn't it - you pays yer money, you takes yer choice.

You are HE-ing for the reasons you say - but most people don't and, largely, organisations like Beavers, Cubs etc, run by volunteers will reflect the 'rules' of the majority.

You are coming from a different place and putting your child in a 'mainstream' setting, so 'mainstream' (ie dumping and running!) you might have to be for this one.

That's not to say Foxy or whoever s/he calls herself can't cut you a little slack, but s/he is probably the leader for a reason - a bit bolshie and no one else wants to do it.

(IME cubs/scouts etc aint about touchy feely, softly-softly. Perchance woodcraft folk may suit better?)

happywomble Tue 28-Apr-09 10:40:27

I doubt there are any crb/insurance reasons why you can't stay and watch. At our beavers there is a rota for parents to help out each week.

I may be wrong but maybe the Beaver leader feels your daughter will settle better if you just leave her. She may also think you are staying to watch how she runs beavers and may feel uncomfortable with that. She may just want to be 100% focussed on running the group and not to have to stop to chat to parents.

Why don't you send DD to rainbows (junior version of brownies)? Maybe your DD feels overwhelmed by all the lively boys at beavers..I do!

mayorquimby Tue 28-Apr-09 10:45:44

got to agree with the yabu camp. she's running the session and she's making a decision on what she believes to be best for the group.
once you make an exception for one person you are on a slippery slope.

ChocFridgeCake Tue 28-Apr-09 10:54:55

It's chicken and egg situation though - how will your DD ever successfully learn to detach if you are always there?

The fact is she joined in fine halfway through the first session so you know she can do it on her own. Let her develop from that. Your presence is likely to hold her back.

Have you considered that you are projecting neediness onto her?

You are actually giving her the message that you don't think she'll cope without you holding her hand even though she already has proved she can.

Annner Tue 28-Apr-09 11:09:44

I'm in the YABU camp. Leaders are volunteers, and we have to make our decisions based on what is right for the group as a whole.

Being brave and leaving, but perhaps telling your DD that you'll not be going far, is probably the best thing that you can do to help her to settle in.

I have had HE Cubs/Beavers before, and although they can find it takes a little longer to settle, having DM hanging around indefinitely does not help them to make friends because they have no incentive to do so. It can also breed resentment among the others (as suggested above) and give the impression that they are somehow not "normal" (in the eyes of a six year old)

The CRB thing is not strictly true - an adult can stay without a CRB, but as they cannot have any unsupervised contact, most Groups prefer all adults coming in to have been CRBd so that extra precautions don't have to be taken and so that we can focus on the children and our programme instead of whether there is always another adult in the room with the visitor.

As for being a parent helper - the parent who offers to help as a cover for sticking to their child all night fills me with dread, I'm afraid... We have a policy of ensuring that parent helpers work with other children and not their own as far as possible so that their child has the same Beavers/Cubs experience as every other child. Sometimes parents are over-hard on their child; sometimes over-soft. Neither is good.

I strongly agree with ChocFridgeCake: sometimes by 6 they learn from us whether or not they can cope, and 1.5 hours of Beavers is managable for most 6 year olds. Please reconsider your position: Beavers is a fab half-way house between the formality of school and the informality of home, and she has a lot to gain from it.

SomeGuy Tue 28-Apr-09 11:11:28

> We home educate. One of the reasons is so that our children can detach from us in their own time, as they are emotionally ready to do so.

Have your children got special emotional needs? Or is it your general belief that children should be brought up this way?

GypsyMoth Tue 28-Apr-09 11:16:08

is this why people choose to home educate? so they can keep kids close by and become needy and dependent on their parents? i hope not!

ChopsTheDuck Tue 28-Apr-09 11:22:18

my dts are very clingy. Watching how they've been and watching other mothers with clingy children, hanging around is def not the solution. The more you hang aroudn the more drawn out it is and the child just becomes increasingly worked up.
Unless there are sn involved, I think the beaver leader is right. The whole point is to give your child a bit of independance, so go for it.

ChopsTheDuck Tue 28-Apr-09 11:24:08

how about dropping her next time, but waiting in the car park out of sight (preferably without your child's knowledge) then if she realyl does need you you are there for her. Surely the leader can pop out for a sec to let you know when she has settled and you can leave?

HelleborePelargoniaThunderclap Tue 28-Apr-09 11:25:00

Bloody hell, you're asking a lot of this Fox person.

It sounds as if Beavers isn't right for your dd. Find somewhere that is right for her, don't ask to bend the rules of somewhere that's wrong for her.

jeee Tue 28-Apr-09 11:28:47

On another point, I would never leave a child secretively - that is going to cause anxiety. Say you are going to leave and leave. Don't sneak out when the child is settling - because they'll never know when you are going for real.

YeahBut Tue 28-Apr-09 11:31:33

I think having you stay would unsettle the other children and be counterproductive for your dd.
She'll be fine. You'll be fine.
You are well intentioned, I'm sure, but you are also B a bit U.

bruffin Tue 28-Apr-09 11:37:19

Are you taking the baby in as well, as that could be a problem as other children will not be covered under their insurances.
TBH I really don't know any activities that you would be allowed to stay with a 6yr old and as others say it sounds more like your neediness than hers.

katiestar Tue 28-Apr-09 13:03:32

I am sorry if this sounds harsh , but I kind of wonder if deep down somewhere you like the idea of your child being clingy and dependant on you ?
Also I think you are being a little disrespectful of the couple who are putting in a lot of their own time and effort ,planning and running Beavers for the benefit of the children.When you knew she was anooyed at you sitting down in the dam ,did you go ahead and do it anyway ?

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