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Am I being unreasonable?

(32 Posts)
fc79 Tue 13-Oct-09 16:55:26

Hello, not a big problem I just wanted some opinions as I am a newly registered childminder.

I have advertised and was contacted by a lady who wanted to come and visit me this week with her 1 year old. We both decided today would suit then when I asked what time she said her, DD and DH would be round at 7.45pm! I really dont want them round at that time of night, that is mine and DH's evening to relax, not try and impress prospective parents. We dont have children of our own but for childminders who do I can imagine this would be even more inconvenient as it would be bedtime routine.

I didnt want to sound rude so just asked if they could possibly do before 6.30 so I would still have all my childminding toys and equipment out. That was 4 days ago, finally got a message back today from the DH saying he works late so will have to be 7.45!

Am I being unreasonable not wanting them looking around my house at this time of the evening?!

hennipenni Tue 13-Oct-09 17:07:41

I have had parents round to see me at all hours, Unfortunatly it may be the only time that they can both attend.

I have inthe past said that they are welcome to come at whatever late time they needed to but have usually said that I won't have toys/equipment out etc.

What about rearranging for the weekend - I've done Saturday appts before. I certainly wouldn't want prospective parents round at that time - and if they're bringing dc, surely that's quite late for a 1yr old hmm.

Can mum not come by herself for initial visit.

It's your home and your business - set your own terms and be firm from the beginning. I learned that the hard way sad

Northernlurker Tue 13-Oct-09 17:20:32

Sure it's your home and your time but we are talking about one occasion here. Were I looking at a childminder and wanted dh to see it then I wouldn't react well to you refusing to accomodate his working hours for a one off visit.

Why should they be bothered about your need to relax? After all we are talking 7.45 not 10.30pm! It's not an unreasonable request.

fc79 Tue 13-Oct-09 17:22:13

Thanks for the replies.
I did think it was very late for a 1 year old to be out. I've messaged back to say as I hadnt heard from them I had now made other plans for tonight but maybe we can sort something out for next week. If they're still interested I could suggest Sat morning maybe.

If they're not still onterested I suppose I could have lost myself some very troublesome parents!

Northernlurker Tue 13-Oct-09 17:36:52

It's 7.45pm!! Not all 1 yr olds are in bed at 6.30pm - especially if their Dad's working hours mean he gets home later than that. I think it's really unfair to label them potentially 'troublesome' just because in choosing a carer who works from her own home they thought that they would be able to see her in that home in the early evening.

overweightnoverdrawn Tue 13-Oct-09 17:49:17

how are they troublesome?

fc79 Tue 13-Oct-09 17:59:13

I like the support you get from most people on this site but hate the way some people obviously have nothing better to do than try to start arguments with strangers! Not going to rise to it, sorry!!

fc79 Tue 13-Oct-09 18:02:07

Overweightnoverdrawn I just meant that if they werent interested anymore when I said I cant do tonight at such short notice then maybe not worth the hassle

Danthe4th Tue 13-Oct-09 18:11:40

Well you did want some opinions. Beside other peoples comments I would suggest instead of sending messages that you actually ring to speak to the parents, I'm a cm and I think it goes along way to make a bit of effort and its polite.
I would suggest a weekend as it sounds better if you don't want people around in the evening.But many people keep their children up later especially when dad works and I think it would of been nice on this one occasion to have gone with that.
Before children start with me I always invite the family round to meet my family, I want people to feel welcome in my home.
I hope they still want to come but if you already think they are troublesome perhaps they are better off going elsewhere.

fc79, don't take it to heart - have been on the receiving end myself on many an occasion grin.

Personally, I class 'early evening' as before 6.30 - especially if that's the time they arrive and they could be there for some time after that. 7.45 is not early evening - I for 1 am putting a very tired reception child to bed at that time and his sleep is more important than a 'potential' parent and mindee. Maybe that's why I am 'underpaid', lol... grin. If you want any advice, please CAT me x

thedollshouse Tue 13-Oct-09 18:25:20

YANBU, I think the parents in question are. When I looked at the nursery I wanted ds to attend we had to attend during opening hours, I presume that you will not normally be working at 7.45? Therefore why should you have visits at that time.

I would send her a message and say that you are only available during working hours. If her husband is working he will have to miss out.

fc79 Tue 13-Oct-09 18:33:22

Exactly underpaid! Its not like we're doing million pound business deals here! Dolls house, your right it should be done in work hours. I would meet them half way and compromise on some level but the way they only got back to me today and presumed it would be ok got to me a bit.

Also I would wonder if this is maybe the time they want you to work til?

I don't think yabu at all - your opening hours are xyz and your evenings are your own. As been pointed out, a nursery wouldn't entertain opening in the evening/weekend for a parent aside from maybe a one off open evening thing.

Give them a ring back and see if they can pop across at the weekend, agree texting is not professional!

Northernlurker Tue 13-Oct-09 20:32:53

fc79 - I'm not sure if you were referring to my posts in your post of 17.59 or not but just in case I would like to point out that you asked for opinions not unqualified agreement with your position. I disagree with you and I've told you why. That isn't 'trying to start an arguement', that's answering your question.

Plainly there is a disagreement just between these few posters about how late 7.45 is or isn't. Doesn't that help you see these parents point of view regarding the reasonableness of their request?

FABIsInTraining Tue 13-Oct-09 20:36:30

They might consider you to be not flexible and will cancel meeting you at all on that basis but you can do what you like, obviously.

You may or not be being unreasonable but I think you are unrealistic about how things can be with working parents.

SillyMillysMummy Tue 13-Oct-09 20:41:49

I would NEVER have parents come round at 7.45....... I am always drunk by then grin...(((((slopes off))))) sorry not helpful but wanted to lighten the mood

dreamteamgirl Tue 13-Oct-09 21:05:28

I have to say that I would find that very unhelpful and probably not bother with you. Why shouldnt dad be able to see where his child will be spending her time? It may be that if he works till late that 7.45 isnt late for his child and that she has a long afternoon nap

But if you are over run with parents who can fit in around you them you dont have to worry smile

fc79 Tue 13-Oct-09 21:26:30

Wow, lots of differing opinions! Just to say, I am not texting them they messaged me through a childcare website so exchanging conversation that way at the moment.

If it was a second meeting or they had already chosen me and the dad just wanted to meet me that would be fine, just not on the first meeting at such short notice.

Thanks to you all for taking time to reply. Never expected this post to be so provocative!

StillSquiffy Tue 13-Oct-09 21:41:06

It's not provocative, it's just different viewpoints. At 7.30 the Dad can probably come too, and they will probably have opportunity to get your undivided attention and not have to compete with the children you are looking after during work hours. In a nursery there will always be someone who can talk to a parent without other distractions even during working hours, but that is not the case with a CM, so I can totally see their POV.

To be honest if I asked a CM if I could come at 7.30 and they said no, I would assume you didn't want the business that much, and would just ring up the next CM in the list..

nbee84 Tue 13-Oct-09 22:02:24

Coming to this a bit late, but the fact that you don't have children of your own to get to bed etc makes it a bit unreasonable of you not to see them in the evening. I do agree that not texting you until today was probably not a good move on their part but I totally understand that the Dad wants to be involved in the childcare decisions too. They may have thought that encroaching (sp?) on your weekends would be more unreasonable on their part.

TheFallenMadonna Tue 13-Oct-09 22:08:33

I don't get why you are prepared to turn down potential business for the sake of one evening. You can do as you like of course. That's the beauty of being self-employed. But I would want your undivided attention on at least one visit.

fluffles Tue 13-Oct-09 22:12:49

7:45 is not that late really, so totally not unreasonable for them to ask, of course you don't have to so also not unreasonable for you to say 'sorry not convenient'.

i do however think it's good that dad wants to meet you as well as mum, even if (or especially if) he's not going to normally be doing drop off or pick up.

sofewbraincellsleft Tue 13-Oct-09 23:13:55

fc79, it's your business so you should operate it as you wish.

As a childminder myself, I would not invite a parent around at 7.45 pm (I haven't lost any business because of this inflexibility, if that's what some people term this as) I usually invite parents around for the first time during working hours (not during nap time either) but that is only if they have provided their name, address, telephone number & child's date of birth & that I know what days/hours they are looking for, I don't want my time wasted and vise versa. I personally make sure that I speak to a prospective parent over the phone before arrangeing a visit and would only make an appointment this way not via a website. I understand what you mean by troublesome smile always speak to parents over the phone, you can tell alot by doing this wink

Parents have usually read about my service on my website first so that really all they are doing on their first visit is to see my setting and to watch my interaction with my current mindees / their child. I wouldn't expect their first visit to last longer than an hour at most.

If parents like what they see, they can then ask for another appointment with perhaps their husband/partner; I usually ask them to visit at the weekend before 6.30pm as paperwork can take some time and certainly wouldn't do this while mindees are around during the week.

I think the point made about visits to nurseries during working hours is a good point, I really don't see why some people think that childminders should be any different!

xoxcherylxox Tue 13-Oct-09 23:49:55

i wouldnt have a parent round at this time as i have a 2 year old so i would be busy bathing and getting her ready for bed. i have had parents round on a quiet morning or on a friday when im not working so that i can talk to them without distractions (although my daughter will be there) and i only put a few toys out as it was my day off. i have never had a parent that late. and if it put a parent off me because i wasnt being flexible about whn they visited so be it as i am not flexible aboout the time i finish i always finish 5.30/6 at push although i am more flexible about start time about picking kids up and dropping the off than most other childminders.

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