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Dealing with a child you don't like

(80 Posts)
Fadge Tue 29-Jul-08 16:15:29

I am sure plenty of Childminders here will have taken on children only to find they don't gel, bond, get on, fit in whatever.

There's nothing bascially wrong with this child, I just plain don't like her. I cannot afford to give notice though, so what to do? Any tips on how I can force myself to like her? I feel guilty as sin for feeling like I do sad
I really work hard at not showing this to her and I hope that it is working, but I find it such a strain and after a session with her I am knacked mentally.

Please tell me I am not alone!?

dmo Tue 29-Jul-08 16:51:21

your not alone
i have had this and i dont know what to say as we just ticked along
i dont know why we didnt gel its not like i let them come to any harm but i could not force myself to cuddle the child

MamaGLovesMe Tue 29-Jul-08 16:53:08

sigh

As a mum I would say I wouldn't want you looking after my child if you didn't like them. sad

I nannied for years and found it impossible not to like any of the children - their behaviour at times, yes didn't like that, but not them.

RachieB Tue 29-Jul-08 17:08:00



what is it you do not "like" about her ?

Fadge Tue 29-Jul-08 17:08:56

MGLM - it's never happened with me before, I just cannot put my finger on what it might be that I could rectify. For what it's worth I have been thinking of handing notice, but as I said I need the money, mum is happy with how it's going, the child seems to be settled and enjoying her time here, I just cannot warm to her at all.

I do not let it affect my care of the child, just as I am sure there are reams of teachers who do not like particular children in their class who continue to work with them.

Fadge Tue 29-Jul-08 17:10:54

It's just one of those things RachieB - I knwo there's no law for not liking every person you meet, there are plenty of adults I have come across in my time I do not like grin but never a child.

MamaGLovesMe Tue 29-Jul-08 17:18:25

Actually, I don't think it is the same as a tacher situation.

MindingMum Tue 29-Jul-08 17:19:46

I think you have to remember that we are childcare professionals therefore console yourself in the fact that it is just a job at the end of the day - listen attentively to her, laugh at her jokes and 'act the part', she will be none the wiser imo

MamaGLovesMe Tue 29-Jul-08 17:21:15

Again, I will have to disagree. A child knows if their carer doesn't like them.

ellideb Tue 29-Jul-08 17:22:16

Fadge, I have the same problem with one of my boy mindees, he's 6 and I have just felt I have never bonded with him. I only have him for 3hrs a week but as much as I hate to admit it, I dread the day he's coming over. I have felt absoloutly awful about it and even qusetioned why I am a childminder if I can't like this child but I suppose it's just like grown ups, you cen't expect to like everyone. I never show it to him and I treat him like every other child I mind. I also take consolidation in the fact that I only have one more session with him left as I'll be on maternity leave then and I won't have him back as mum's circumstances will have changed too.

I do emphasise his good points to myself and tell myself he is only a little boy who wants to be liked, as does anyone. The behaviour I find irritating I try to see the why's and understand the way his brain ticks. This helps. It's not his fault, it's my problem so I'm just dealing with it. I look back at how he has 'come along' and congratulate myself for my input in that.

Sometimes he reminds me of myself when I was little. It's really strange that I can see elements of me in him, maybe that's what I don't like?

I hope some of that as helped. When you want to run away from something, these are the times you are getting the opportunity to grow and be challenged so try see it that way. Maybe you are learning something important from each other?

AbbeyA Tue 29-Jul-08 17:34:12

Children pick up on whether they are liked. I would hate my child to spend hours with someone who didn't like them. I would hope the CM would be honest and I would find someone else.

MamaGLovesMe Tue 29-Jul-08 17:37:48

Exactly.

abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz Tue 29-Jul-08 17:39:32

You can't help how you feel about her but I think you should give notice. The thought of a child being cared for by someone who doesn't like her is desparately sad. Let someone else look after her - caregivers have such a profound lifelong effect on their charges and I think you needing the money is not a good enough reason to carry on. I think it's only right you give notice.

The mother might appear to be happy but I would feel sick to the pit of my stomach if a CM/nanny didn't like my children but continued to look after them solely because they needed the money.

MindingMum Tue 29-Jul-08 17:45:10

I disagree about a child knowing that her care doesn't like her. I was looked after by the same Nanny for 11 years, i loved her and she appeared to love me too.

It was only in adulthood that i found out that she didn't have feelings either way for me but the money was very good and she was a true professional.

It is human nature that the OP doesn't love and bond with every child she minds and imo, if the child were to move on to another childminder the same thing usually happens ie the new childminder doesn't like him either but puts on a front and gets on with it.

AbbeyA - in an ideal world - yes she should be honest but realistically there is nothing worse that you could say to a parent than "I don't like your child"

AbbeyA Tue 29-Jul-08 17:55:50

I have 2 friends who were childminders ,they did a very good job but they didn't like the children in their care. Early childhood is so short, it seems so sad to be with a person who doesn't even like you!

MindingMum Tue 29-Jul-08 18:05:44

I agree 100% Abbey but unfortunately it is very very common and in the majority of cases the parents have no clue however 'in tune' with their children they claim to be

HonoriaGlossop Tue 29-Jul-08 18:12:45

totally agree with Abbey and Mamagloves. Warmth, and approval are vital parts of what children in early years need from their carers.

You're obviously really working to try and minimise any effect but I am sure there can't fail to be an effect - children have such sensitivity to atmospheres, feelings etc even before they can articulate it.

How often is she with you?

jillyj Tue 29-Jul-08 18:35:51

did you not feel this way when you settled her in. its awful,poor little thing. agree with earlier poster, have never dislked a child, their behavior sometimes, but never them.let her go to someone who will feel better about her.

ellideb Tue 29-Jul-08 18:40:44

It seems only people who have had this experience will accept it sometimes, and unfortunately does happens. Those of you who have never had this 'non-bonding' with a child are lucky because it is a horrible situation to find yourselves in.

MamaGLovesMe Tue 29-Jul-08 18:46:38

The child deserves better in all honesty. sad

missiesparkles Tue 29-Jul-08 18:59:07

I think I just find a problem with someone who has chosen to look after children as a living being able to not liking a child... but then it isn't a situation I've ever been in so I guess I can't really comment sad

imananny Tue 29-Jul-08 19:02:00

have never disliked a child (but have some parents) wink and then turned job down

to be fair to child, think you need to really consider letting her go

any mums on here, would prob be upset if they knew that their childcarer disliked their child

RachieB Tue 29-Jul-08 19:12:34

fadge of course you dont have to like everyone you come across...

i was just wondering what exactly makes you feel like this ? was it something she does / doesnt do etc

TBH i don't think i could have a job caring for a child i didn't "like"

Fadge Tue 29-Jul-08 19:27:25

Well thank you all for your comments, even though I don't agree with some of them - I too think maybe it is only something you could possibly understand if you have been in this situation. As to my suitability in this job - believe me if I didn't care and worry about this I wouldn't even be posting here and asking for advice. I think the fact I am asking about this shows I care very very deeply.

We can't all just give up on a career because we come across someone we don't like!

I totally hear what some have said about being unhappy if they knew that a CM felt this way about their child, I would too, but the key is *if they knew* and I can honestly say the child does appear happy here, and I remain a consumate professional.
If there were any suggestion that the child was unhappy, either with how she behaves here or comments from Mum etc, then that would be different.

Re settling - yes we had settling in, and of course as you are new to the child and the child is new to you then things feel a bit strange at first maybe - I feel it does take a fair few months in some cases for the true picture to come to light, not everyone bonds instantly although some do.

I really don't expect anyone to offer advice, as tbh there isn't any apart from give notice. I think I just needed to hear that I am not the big bad bitch from hell for feeling like this, and to know I am not alone and others have had this too.

beanieb Tue 29-Jul-08 19:37:19

You also ask for tips on how to force yourself to like her? I think don't try to force it...

Maybe other people in the same situation have some tips to share ?

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