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Moves to London, pregnant and no help with childcare for 2 kids for due date! Help!

(25 Posts)
Lindyloo17 Fri 01-Jan-16 22:25:00

I moved to London at the end of the summer with my husband and young boys, we just got here in September and then I found out I was pregnant!!
We have no family anywhere near us and hardly know anyone apart from general acquaintances at the school gates and I'm getting increasingly anxious about what to do for childcare when my due date approaches. We've tried childcare.co.uk but haven't had any replies to our profile (most people want notice or wouldn't mind helping out if they worked full time for you). We have offered regular babysitting starting now so that the kids are comfortable with the babysitter by the time I go into labour and have also offered work of a few mornings a week work for after the baby is born.
Can anyone suggest any other options? Obviously our kids are our world and we won't leave them with just anyone and want to be sure they know someone well before being left in their care while I have the baby.

Help please!!!

Artandco Fri 01-Jan-16 22:27:51

If you can afford, book a maternity doula through an agency

LIZS Fri 01-Jan-16 22:28:16

Sitters.co.uk? Ask an assistant at nursery/school, advertise at colleges offering Early Years, Childcare or teaching assistant courses?

Lindyloo17 Fri 01-Jan-16 22:33:44

Isn't a maternity doula to help me in labour or do they do childcare for your other children left at home? I really want my husband with me during labour and he doesn't want to miss it as this is our last.
Will have a look at sitters website.

Thank you for the tips. Getting stressed as time ticks by.

hesterton Fri 01-Jan-16 22:36:28

What area of London are you? Have you joined a community board such as streetlife? You would do well to find a nice local sitter to get to know your children now with a view to care during labour.

originalusernamefail Fri 01-Jan-16 22:38:44

Would a home birth be a possibility/ appropriate?

Artandco Fri 01-Jan-16 22:41:01

A doula will do either usually. So whatever helps the mother. In your case it would be staying behind to look after other children. Then once your back she would look after you and baby. You would usually need to book one for a month at least though to make it worth their while ( and you can book for the week before due day and 3 weeks after to cover slightly early/ late baby)

Lindyloo17 Fri 01-Jan-16 22:43:53

I'm in teddington. Near Twickenham, Kingston, Richmond etc.
never heard of street life, is a local online forum? I've asked around about sitters but most people have full time nannies or au pairs who meet thei childcare needs and others have just merely suggested asking my neighbours if they know any teenage kids who want to earn some pocket money babysitting - I am not leaving my kids in the care of some random teenagers I don't know.
We want someone the kids can get to know and who has experience and references and someone we trust leaving our babies with. X

Artandco Fri 01-Jan-16 22:48:17

Do you have a friend with a full time nanny who can spare them 1-2 days? You could come to an agreement that the nanny stays at yours overnight and looks after yours with theirs for that day if needed. Chances are it would be mainly night time or weekends anyway. Then you can pay nanny for helping you ontop of her normal salary, and offer to look after friends children one weekend in exchange for the help later in the year

Lindyloo17 Fri 01-Jan-16 22:48:28

I will have a look at doulas in my area, that sounds ideal except my eldest really needs lots of time getting to know someone, he has anxiety issues. My youngest would quite happily wave us off!! grin

captainproton Fri 01-Jan-16 22:48:36

With my first it was just the midwife and me in the delivery room because DH had to sit with DSS until a relative who lived other side of London arrived. DH basically missed most of my labour. With my 2nd I had a doula and DH had to look after the kids at home. Doula was fab in the end and besides We had no other options. For my 3rd due soon I am having a home birth partly because everyone we know has young kids and can't just drop everything to be here and we moved to an area with limited doulas and I have fast labours.

I think unfortunately sometimes we have to reconcile what we want with what's possible. I would definitely recommend a doula btw.

Lindyloo17 Fri 01-Jan-16 22:49:49

Would love a home birth but not an option as both my kids have been big babies and needed addition support during birth. X

Lindyloo17 Fri 01-Jan-16 22:56:19

Doula definitely sounds ideal and exactly what we need, apart from my eldest adapting to it. But I will definitely look into it, thanks so much.
Captainproton- can I ask, what is the price range for a doula? In your experience what would you expect to pay for their service?

I would definitely ask to share on of the neighbours nannies if I k ew them better. I'm hoping when the schools start back I can start some networking and hopefully have some options. X

messystressy Fri 01-Jan-16 23:00:08

I was in same situation and hired a doula, but although she said she would follow my lead seemed to have strong views on some things. So in the end, I paid her NOT to come. I went into labour and laboured at home for few hours while my DH looked after DS. They then took me to hospital and booked into a local hotel. I gave birth with just the midwife in attendance. Not ideal but was absolutely fine. If I had my time again, I would be asking around school to see if anyone would help out and take my kids overnight when thd time comes and offer payment. I would do it for someone else, and I'm sure someone would offer to help out. Perhaps a local childminder might be willing to do this - and the ad hoc babysitting?

messystressy Fri 01-Jan-16 23:01:43

Think doula was about £300?

captainproton Fri 01-Jan-16 23:21:36

www.douladirectory.co.uk/

A good doula should listen to what you want and support you. Mine did spend a few sessions with us at home first before the birth. She is now one of my friends.

I can't remember how much we paid as she was training we paid less than average. I didn't mind a trainee doula though because I just really needed her to be there to make sure my wishes were respected and help me not tear, she and not the midwife told me to pant. She also did a couple of postnatal sessions as part of the deal. She was a spare pair of hands and let DH and I enjoy our newborn.

minipie Sat 02-Jan-16 20:03:24

Look at Hello Mums. They are a babysitting agency in SW london and they offer a "birth cover" service for exactly this situation. you and your older child will meet the babysitter in advance, and they agency will (as far as poss) guarantee the same person comes when you go into labour.

Haven't used it myself (lucky to have nearby family) but thought it sounded like a great service.

minipie Sat 02-Jan-16 20:09:30

there is a blog post describing the service here

maryann1975 Sat 02-Jan-16 20:40:13

I never know why people suggest home birth as an option when people struggle for chilcare during labour. I had two hb, for dc2 and dc3. Dc2 was fine, labour over night dc1 asleep, no problem. With dc3 I was very lucky not to need to transfer, next door neighbour (who we didn't know brilliantly) was with us to look after the other two as their were last minute complications, meaning an ambulance was called, there is no way I would have wanted the older dc to witness it. Everything was fine in the end, but if we had had to transfer, would DH have been happy to wave the ambulance off in an emergency to stay with two sleeping dc? What happens if you go into labour during the day, who would deal with the older ones then.
Op, ask around at school or at local toddler groups. if someone approached me in this situation there is no question whether I'd help you out. Of course I would even if we were only acquantances, there is time to become friends in the future. Wishing you all the best and hope you find a solution soon.

captainproton Sat 02-Jan-16 21:12:29

Well maryann people suggest it because it's the least worst option not the perfect solution.

With no one else to look after the children, and perhaps no funds or even the sort of doula/babysitting services mentioned nearby what would you have women do? At least you can be in the same building as your husband.

lovelynannytobe Sat 02-Jan-16 21:27:19

I thought I had it all planned when I was pregnant with my DC3 but when I went into labour the circumstances caused me to change my mind and we didn't call for the pre arranged helper. I laboured as much as I could at home but when the time got close my husband drove us and our two children to hospital. They were there with me when I was giving birth (my youngest one was asleep on a bean bag in the corner (only 18m) and my eldest was holding my hand while I was pushing). I really hadn't considered that until the contractions started but in hindsight this was just perfect. I'm not saying hey ho this is your solution ... but it could be one of the options should something go wrong with the babysitter.

hibbleddible Sat 02-Jan-16 22:44:23

Some options:
1) finding a local Childminder. You might find one who is willing to help.

2) Asking a local au pair/nanny. I see you are reinvestigating this.

3) I know you say your family isn't near, but is there any chance they could stay with you/stay in a local b&b for a little while around your due date, then help when you are in labour?

hibbleddible Sat 02-Jan-16 22:45:04

Or hopefully a local nanny will see your post here!

minipie Sat 02-Jan-16 22:53:56

Oh another suggestion, ask on nappyvalleynet (richmond/barnes etc local forum).

Karoleann Sun 03-Jan-16 13:32:43

mini pie's suggestion sounds perfect.

General acquaintances at the school gate may be worth sounding out too. Especially if you drop into conversation that you're struggling to find some cover. I looked after the eldest child of a very random acquaintance when we were in London when she went into labour.

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