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How long does it take to 'settle in' at nursery?

(4 Posts)
hopalongsausage Thu 11-Nov-10 10:59:18

My little DD is nearly 18 months old, and she has recently started at nursery for 2 days a week. I went back to work in May (again, 2 days a week) when she turned one after I had a year off for mat leave, but because we were in the process of moving, we had our mums come and look after DD whilst I was at work (which was a bloody nightmare in itself, but don't get me started on that one!). We are now settled in our new house - been here 2 months - and I found the lovely nursery before we moved here. She's had some settling in sessions which were ok, but she cried a lot when being dropped off and also at pick up time. DH does the morning drop off now and I collect - he says that she cries a lot and becomes very clingy, but then he just goes, and she cries when she sees me in the evening. Anyhoo, today I dropped her off as she has kindly given me her lurgy and I have bronchitis and am at home dosed up with day nurse (ick), antibiotics and steroids - DH had to be in early for a meeting. My god, I can't remember when I saw her bawl so much, tears streaming down her face, snot everywhere, clinging on to me for dear life. The nursery people are lovely and say that once she is distracted she's fine, and they'll call if there's a problem. She has her bunny and a dummy (only for snooze times, don't have a go!) I feel so mean. Anyway, what I'm asking is how long does this kind of behaviour typically go on for, and will I feel like horridcrapmummy forever??!

dribbleface Thu 11-Nov-10 20:09:52

Hi hopalongsausage - of course your not a horridcrap mummy. She was most likely worse for you today as she is used to DH doing it. My little boy still crys 7/10 times on drop off. I manage the nursery and it still makes me feel sick! But i can hear him running off to play by the time i'm putting my shoes/coat away.

In my experience it gets better after 2 weeks (5 day a week attenders) so 10 weeks for 2 days per week. You sound like your happy with the nursery so thats a great sign. Ask them to take some photo's of her playing happily, it will reassure you. My staff had to do this for me (never thought i would be that mum standing in the foyer with tears streaming down my face!)

Hope it all settles down for you.

babybouncer Thu 11-Nov-10 20:40:29

My son recently became very unsettled after he moved from the babyroom up to toddlers. It came as a total shock because he'd been so happy before. My DH also usually does dropoff and although I'd been worried, once I experienced the complete meltdown first hand (and ended up crying in the car park afterwards) I even began thinking that we needed to change nursery.

After worrying for a few more days, I realised that I just needed some reassurance, so I made an appointment to see the nursery manager to talk about it. She was more than happy to sit down with me and show me DS's learning journey which had observations of his behaviour and photos of him playing. Seeing this really helped, because he was so obviously having such a lot of fun and being himself. Ask your nursery if they can help to reassure you.

It seemed to take a long time for DS to settle, but he's happy now - holds his arms out to be passed over to the nursery workers! - and he's only been in the toddler room for a couple of months.

hopalongsausage Fri 12-Nov-10 11:48:19

Thank you, dribble and babybouncer - I really needed the reassurance! I too have done the crying in the car park - and it probably doesn't help that I'm poorly as well. They have done some piccies for me and she looks fine. Today was the same, wouldn't let me undo her coat, arms stretching out to me as I walked away, horrible, horrible, horrible. DH keeps saying 'ooh she'll be fine' and I know he's right, but, well, you know. I too never thought I'd be the mum standing in the foyer with tears streaming down my face - I've been a childrens nurse for 16 years and thought I'd be 'hardened' to it - SO different when it's your own.

Thanks, ladies smile

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