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Really disappointed with my cm- how do i let her down gently?

(52 Posts)
cheekymonk Mon 25-Mar-13 17:29:43

Have been using cm for 6 months. she does school run with 8 year old ds and has my 2 year dd 3 days a week. I found her great at first, supportive with my dd's speech probs and I liked her less formal approach. However, after pushing for a daily diary I have discovered dd has toast, crisps and fruit flakes for lunch all the time. Sometimes more fruit is offered but that is the general picture. CM never takes her ANYWHERE. Every day its playing inside all day. CM has 1 year old dd of her own plus 2 school age kids also hers. She minds another 1 year old and another school age one. What comes across is that she has far too much on her plate to really give dd much time and attention. DS says he is ignored as are all the older children.My ds has been very vocal, telling me cm shouts at dd, its not a great environment etc and cm has admitted of late that dd has been a handful.
also when i turned on my phone this morning cm hasd text me to say her son was in hospital and she couldn't have dd today. No apology or anything. I understand she was stressed but still...
So I am hunting for other cms right now. i know i prob have to give 1 months notice but when do i tell her- its going to be so awkward and i don't think I can stick another month with her...

malovitt Mon 25-Mar-13 17:50:24

Why would you have to let her down gently?
She sounds rubbish. Toast & crisps for lunch and no outings?

minderjinx Mon 25-Mar-13 18:56:12

It is a difficult situation. Presumably you don't want her to think that you are giving her up because her son was taken ill, but nor do you want to be reeling out a huge list of complaints right at this moment either. Normally I would say it's only fair to raise your issues and give the other person a chance to raise their game to meet your expectations, but if you are determined to move on, I'm not sure there is any point. Plus if you do want her to work out her notice period, you don't want there to be a bad atmosphere for the children. Are you sure she won't in any case get wind of the fact that you are looking elsewhere? It would be very unkind to let her hear it from someone else. In the circumstances I'd probably just say I'd decided to look for someone nearer/with children closer in age to mine or whatever. It might not be the blow you would imagine if she is feeling overstretched herself.

drinkyourmilk Mon 25-Mar-13 18:57:38

I think lack of apology considering circumstances is understandable.
The rest of your post makes me uncomfortable. She seems to have taken on too much. She isn't able to provide the care your children deserve. She isnt doing her job.
You don't need to let her down gently. Just find someone else and then.give notice. If she asks just say you wanted a greater range of activities.
Have you mentioned your concerns to her?

cheekymonk Mon 25-Mar-13 19:01:22

I said I was unahppy at not knowing what dd did in a day hence idea of daily diary. Last week she didn't answer the door, her dd answered door with baby in her arms and shouted to her mum we were there! Sometimes she is on the phone when she answers the door. Lately it seems to have rapidly gone downhill and i think she clearly isn't coping. She's a fiery character and I agree she deserves better than to hear it secondhand but like you say minderjinx timing is lousy.
I just feel she babysits rather than actually CARES.

Laquila Mon 25-Mar-13 19:03:41

I'd say you've got to look out for number 1 in these kind of situations. It might feel a bit awkward telling her you'd like to give her notice, but it sounds as though you've made up your mind (based on some understandable doubts about her suitability for your kids) and so I guess you'll feel much better once it's out in the open. Minderjinx makes a good point about the fact that she might be quite grateful, if she has in fact taken on too much.

cookielove Mon 25-Mar-13 19:24:30

I agree that you are well within your rights to find better childcare however you will have to at least pay the months notice even if your not planning to use it! Lets not forget this is how she makes a living.

cheekymonk Mon 25-Mar-13 21:18:19

yes I know that cookielove- I want to deal with it all properly

SimLondon Mon 25-Mar-13 23:11:51

I would find a good nursery.

cookielove Mon 25-Mar-13 23:15:32

Sorry didn't mean to be patronising blush I read your op wrong and assumed that you meant you wanted to get out of paying it. Which believe it or not I have actually read loads of times on these kinds of threads confused any who apologies.

I suggest a letter stating the facts of why you are removing your children would suffice. It is a shame it has coincided with her own personal problems. However you and your children deserve a certain level of care which you clearly are not receiving.

Good luck in your new Cm Search smile

Dozer Tue 26-Mar-13 14:50:04

Sounds like your DS knows the score, and in your shoes, I would pull both your DC out a.s.a.p.

I also don't see why you should pay her if she is shouting at your 1yo! Surely that is breach of contract, but guess you can't prove it, and it'd leave less bad feeling and avoid legal wrangling to pay the notice.

cheekymonk Tue 26-Mar-13 19:41:59

I am very cross with myself as cm collared me in playground today and seemed to be looking for reassurance i wasn't cross with her and wanting to talk through what had happened with her ds. She did at least ask if dd was ok and what happended. It was the prefect oppto talk about things in a way but wasn't happy to talk- the playground was freezing and i was more concerned about the children really. I want to have some hope of finding a replacement for mentioning anything really. DD goes to nursery 2 days a week but they can't have her fulltime. shame as she adores her keyworker.

Dozer Tue 26-Mar-13 20:50:35

Don't beat yourself up, the playground isn't the ideal location for a tricky conversation!

ReetPetit Tue 26-Mar-13 21:14:54

it wouldn't have been the right time to talk to her op in the playground...

As for letting her down gently - you don't need to, really. Being given and giving notice is par for the course really in this job and not always for bad reasons (moving away, new babies, new jobs etc...) You just give the notice in writing and verbally and if she asks for reasons you can give them if you want to or not if you don't - you don't have to!

if you feel she has actually been neglectful or abusive then you should report her. Do you feel she has treated your dc badly or is she just disinterested?
what examples does your ds give of her shouting at your dd?

cheekymonk Tue 26-Mar-13 21:57:55

Disinterested I think reetpetit. She is finding dd hard to deal with at them moment- she doesn't smile anymore when she talks about her, kind of has this concerned face. I think she always found dd easy before and now we are in the 2s she is not! DS says CM shouts her name, not to touch things. Its just cm told me she ignored negative and focused on positive and Ds passionately disagreed with this and said it was the opposite. DS saw keyworker cuddle dd yesterday and he said ah, clearly taken with how much keyworker loves dd (she tells her this). I asked ds if cm is like this with dd and he said no.

ReetPetit Tue 26-Mar-13 22:03:08

thats a shame cheekymonk - sounds like there is not much interest or bond there which is sad sad i think you are right in moving her - have you got her name down for more days at nursery?
if she doesn't go to any groups she probably doesn't talk to other cms so i wouldn't worry about her finding out you are looking elsewhere - and even if she does, you have perfectly valid reasons for moving her - you can say you want a cm who does groups. I wouldn't want to think of my ds at 2 being cooped up all day in an oppressive environment where he is given no love or attention.

cheekymonk Thu 28-Mar-13 21:25:13

Its strange though, today cm gave me easter eggs for both children! she's not a complete cruella de vil but still not what i would like. She wrote in diary today that dd was 'fighting with her 4 year old' who is off school! DD has a mark under her eye from said fight! Every day cm seems unhappy with dd's behaviour saying she's looking for attention. Nursery say she is good as gold. Spoke to another cm today who goes to groups and she says the ones she knows are full but one is available in Sept!!! Seems a long time to wait!!! I am waiting for one to get back from holiday that i am banking on... Yes will ask at nursery too.

doughnut44 Sat 30-Mar-13 02:13:23

If you are not happy with the care given and yiu feel your children are unhappy then you need to make alternative arrangements for their care. Do you feel that there may be behavioural issues with your daughter or do you think it may be a clash of personality? Does the cm shout at the other children or just your daughter? I have to admit I have minded children in the past that I haven't enjoyed for one reason or another but no one would have known -especially not the child as I made extra effort to cuddle them as it did not come easily.
One of my mindees was aa good as gold for his parents and everyone in the world but for me he was very attention seeking but I put it down to him being only child in his extended family and centre of attention wherever he went whereas with me he was one of 3 so had to share my time.
Whatever the cause of the problem I hope you soon have it sorted x

cheekymonk Tue 02-Apr-13 17:54:20

Interesting doughnut, thank you. I think cm has got so used to dd being easy she seems to struggle with the more demanding 2s from what I can see. DS says he can't remember if cm shouts at other children. Today she said she had done 2 year check but would go through it with me another time as in some areas dd does not read well so that tells me there are some behaviour issues. I have spoken to another cm today who sounds lovely but is not avail the days I need her apart from 1 until Aug/Sept. Nursery can't change days either but we will visit this new cm and take it from there. I really don't want to wait until Sept and I noticed today dd was perfectly happy to go today so it seems problem is more mine! Cm did take her out today too but complained that dd seemed tired...

minderjinx Tue 02-Apr-13 18:12:55

The discussion around the two year old check is an ideal opportunity for you to learn more about what is going on here and judge whether it can be fixed. If there are behavioral issues and you can work together and support each other to address them it could go a long way to making your CM feel more positively about your dd and get their relationship back on track. It is also an ideal opportunity for you to raise the fact that you feel she needs more variety/fresh air/exercise/stimulation and suggest they get out and about more. I would also suggest taking what your older child says with some caution = he may have his own agenda and be enjoying painting a dramatic picture. As you say, your dd doesn't seem unhappy to go, so that would suggest she is unlikely to be being told off all day long.

cheekymonk Thu 04-Apr-13 14:25:49

Talking with cm today about 2 year check. Her responses will dictate what/how much I say. if she is open and I can discuss issues it will be a start. I have butterflies now, I am so lily livered!!!

cheekymonk Thu 04-Apr-13 19:35:58

Well...everyone was in coats when I arrived and it was clear it was going to be a quick chat. She was defensive about what she had written and said that it doesn't emphasise dd's understanding of the world which is very good for her age. DD is meeting most things, delayed in speech and handling her feelings acc to cm. I thinkcm does have affection for dd but I think through inexperience, struggles with her sometimes. It said a few times that dd ignores requests/demands and doesn't follow instruction but doesn't that go for all 2 year olds?? Will have chat with dh tonight. I am thinking about private speech therapy for dd too . Hope to get all these issues sorted...

nannynick Thu 04-Apr-13 23:46:45

Wonder why they picked now to do the 2 year check... Is your DD nearly 3?

HSMMaCM Fri 05-Apr-13 03:36:47

Probably did the 2 yr check coz she's 2 nannynick grin. Not sure why everyone was in coats when the OP went to discuss it though.

nannynick Fri 05-Apr-13 06:27:31

Yes but there can be a lot of difference between a child aged 2:1 and a child 2:11. It is School holidays, CM may be finding the 2 year old hard to deal with, so is now the best time to do the 2 year check, would leaving it to a time when there are less children (due to being at school) and when the child is nearer age 3 not going to give a better result. Why do the check when the child is being a bit of a handful?

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