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She was exhausted and starving hungry........!

(30 Posts)
BellyMonster Sat 02-Jul-11 09:30:43


My 10 month old DD started nursery a month ago, she goes 2 days a week whilst I'm at work. Initially I thought it was great and although she was very tired when she got home she seemed happy and I thought over time that she'd start to sleep better there and become less tired.

But yesterday when I picked her up she looked beyond exhausted, she was tearful and whimpered and clung to me as soon as I picked her up. She also burst into tears when I went into the cot room to collect her things and wouldnt stop until we left. I spoke to her 'key worker' who I don't think my DD is very fond of, neither am I if I'm honest and even though I'd asked them to put her down for her morning nap early because she was up at 5am they'd ignored that and had taken them out in the buggies so she'd only slept 30mins all morning. I don't think they stick to her routine at all and just ignore what I ask. She was also starving when we got home, I've never seen her eat that fast and she cried when each time her food was finished.

Am I being over sensitive or do I have too high expectations? Does she need more time settling in? Or should I change nurseries? I was just so worried about her last night, she was beside her self with exhaustion and even though she was fast asleep in my arms she wouldnt let me put her down in her cot she screamed blue murder which isnt like her. Sorry for the long post, I'm just worried shes unhappy there all day and it takes her so long to catch up on the lost sleep.

LIZS Sat 02-Jul-11 12:19:43

I'm not sure it is realistic in a nursery setting to expect individualised timetables for each child. Do they keep a diary for you ? Could it be that she was just out of sorts anyway which started with her early start and then made for an unsettled day. She is also at the classic age for separation anxiety. However if you are unhappy generally with the nursery rather than as a one-off perhaps a cm or nanny woudl suit you better.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sat 02-Jul-11 12:23:08

I don't think nurseries can do individual routines either but that does sound rather hard for her.

Have you talked to the nursery manager about how your daughter is settling in? I'd voice my concerns and ask how they would seek to address it.

Sirzy Sat 02-Jul-11 12:23:22

Is this the first time you have had problems?

I think if they were planning on going out with them then I can understand them not putting her down early, (and if she wasn't tired then it would have been pointless anyway!) I have kept DS up a bit longer before now if we were about to go out so he could sleep while out.

Do the nursery not tell you what she has eaten and when? if not I would request that information of them.

Rosebud05 Sat 02-Jul-11 22:15:04

She's only been there a month and she's very young - I think some days are just like this with babies.

However, in regard to her routine, I don't think it's unreasonable to ask the nursery to follow it (they don't all have to go out for example) - what did you agree regarding your daughter's routine during her induction?

I agree that the nursery should provide you with information about what and when she ate. My children were older when starting nursery but for the first few months they definitely needed something substantial at home after their nursery 'tea' as they can't eat much at one time at that age, so it may be that she ate but just not much.

I would ask to meet with your daughter's keyworker and outline your concerns; if you don't want to do this, then the manager.

IMHE, it often does take a while for babies to settle into nursery and there may be adjustments they can make to avoid you having to look for somewhere else, though of course you should do this if your're still not happy after the meeting.

amirah85 Sat 02-Jul-11 23:13:17

but its strange she was crying when op entered in the cot room?could the baby have been left to cry there?

Wafflepuss Sat 02-Jul-11 23:27:52

I'd trust your instincts on this one. Especially the bit about her being so hungry. Is anyone bothering to help her at meal/snack times to make sure she has eaten do you think? My nursery works around individual children's routines so if dd is due a nap at the time everyone else is going out then that's fine, she naps and they go out. This situation sounds very similar to one a friend of mine was in recently, she moved her dd and the difference in her DD's happiness is amazing.

TragicallyHip Sat 02-Jul-11 23:37:15

Do they tell you how much she has eaten? Could she have been so upset due to being over tired and not eaten due to this as well?

Maybe they had arranged an outing when the babies don't normally sleep so that is why they didn't put her down earlier.

Not trying to stick up for the nursery but thinking of explanations.

Ds took a little while before he would eat properly at nursery and used to cry every time I picked him up. He started at 14 months and now loves it.

At the end of the day if you don't feel happy/comfortable with the nursery maybe you should look for another one.

nickschick Sat 02-Jul-11 23:44:45

Id like to say that as a nursery nurse Id never leave a baby crying for one its simply not right,a baby crying is crying for a reason and for two its very frustrating to listen to.

I dont think that individual timetables work very well in a nursery setting-there is a routine there but its a group focused routine unfortunately.

Having said that all the children in my care were treated as individuals and each loved as if they were my own babies so they certainly didnt lose out being part of a group.

Its very early days your dd is going through lots of adjutments physically and emotionally and its not unusual at this age for babies to get hungry as they are having growth spurts....a tired baby will sleep anywhere too.

I think whats happened is probably 'overload' for your dd perhaps an outing,humid weather, stimuli from other children etc etc has all made for an exhausting day.

Sometimes I think Mums need to stop blaming themselves and looking for reasons why.

threefeethighandrising Sat 02-Jul-11 23:50:49

Have you considered a CM? There are some excellent CMs out there. Ours had three assistants and between them they had 9 children so it was like a mini-nursery, but the care was much more personal than I believe you could ever get in a nursery setting. She was great, OFSTED thought so too as she had an outstanding rating.
We found her on

BellyMonster Sun 03-Jul-11 10:17:04

Hi Everyone

Thankyou for your posts. I'm still really worried about it even though I've had chance to calm down and reflect. My DD was up at 5am for the day so I asked them to put her down a little earlier than usual, I'd given her breakfast so they didn't have to worry about that, I just wanted them to look after her and also make sure she wasn't too cranky for them. Looking at the little book she brings home with what they've been up to for the day it says she slept from 1.10-1.40pm that was it! That means she was awake for 7 hours before she had any sleep! And even then it was only for 30mins! I asked her key worker and she said my DD had slept 30 mins in the morning and an hour in the afternoon???? Apparently not.

I completely understand that they can't stick to each babies routine but they could at least try to loosely go by what I've been working so hard to establish over the last 10 months? And that means that my DD is happier and easier to handle surely? She was BESIDE HERSELF with exhaustion, she was hysterical and clinging to me for dear life. Im expecting her to be tired but I won't accept the state she came home in.

And as for her not eating that much at nursery and getting used to eating there, she's always been a fantastic eater, its fine if shes hungry when she cones home but this was something different. I've never seen her so desperate to eat, she bawled when the food was finished, I had to rush off to get her more.

I wasn't well on Friday when she went to nursery and she was so tearful that I just wanted to get her home so I didn't have a proper chat with anyone. I will definitely give them a call tomorrow to see what went wrong.

BellyMonster Sun 03-Jul-11 10:56:04

Amirah85 - I really really really hope that she wasn't left to cry in the cot room or I'll be very angry. She definitely wasn't happy going in there and clung to me for dear life, another thing I have to talk to them about

jetgirl Sun 03-Jul-11 11:09:19

Is it possible she is coming down with what you had when you took her to nursery too? A bug can really get to little ones. Added to an early waking, change in routine and new place this could be another explanation.

Have you been happy with the care up until this point? Never be concerned to raise issues with your childcare provider. If they really do care, they will listen and take you seriously, if they don't then you need to find a new childcare provider that you are happy with.

jetgirl Sun 03-Jul-11 11:09:24

Is it possible she is coming down with what you had when you took her to nursery too? A bug can really get to little ones. Added to an early waking, change in routine and new place this could be another explanation.

Have you been happy with the care up until this point? Never be concerned to raise issues with your childcare provider. If they really do care, they will listen and take you seriously, if they don't then you need to find a new childcare provider that you are happy with.

pinkapples Sun 03-Jul-11 20:58:38

Hi I'm sorry to hear about your little one I manage a nursery and it is not unreasonable to ask them to follow your routine if they won't do that I would look at other settings

Rosebud05 Sun 03-Jul-11 21:12:43

Yes, I was surprised to hear people commenting that nurseries can't accommodate babies usual routines and patterns. Our nursery certainly asks during induction the child's usual sleeping and eating patterns and works with that. If a baby usually sleeps in the morning, how on earth would you keep them awake until afternoon anyway?

BellyMonster Sun 03-Jul-11 21:29:55

They did ask us about her routine but I dont think they were listening! My DD usually sleeps 9-10.30 and 2-3 so she napped at completely the wrong time at nursery on Friday

Sirzy Sun 03-Jul-11 21:31:51

It's not about not being able to accomodate the routines but about them having a degree of flexibilty as it has to fit to an extent with everything else.

Babies do just have grumpy days though! Ds had an early nap today so by bedtime he was overtired and grumpy. He is in nursery tomorrow and despite them knowing his routine they also take cues from the baby, so just because I say he normally goes to sleep at 11 they wouldn't stop him going to sleep at 10 if he wanted or force him to sleep at 11 just because I had said so.

Now if this is turned into a regular problem I would worry but if it's a one off I would talk to the staff about it and leave it there unless it happens again.

tanya153 Mon 04-Jul-11 08:40:22

I have just started my son in nursery aged 4 months and I know they say it's easier the younger they are but he's settling in very well at the minute and they are following his routine as closely as possible, I for one understand that it won't be to the dot as they are not one on one and babies have off days but I'd keep a very close eye on things if it was me and if things don't improve then I'd consider moving her. Also have you heard reviews from other mums about your nursery? I did with mine and even though most were excellent, one mum had one child that settled fine there and the younger one didn't settle at all so they had to move him, so I guess it just shows yet again that all children are different
Good luck! X

RitaMorgan Mon 04-Jul-11 09:17:29

My 10 month old is in nursery too, and they do stick to his routine as much as possible. To an extent I have tweaked his home routine to fit nursery routine though so it's an easier fit for everyone.

They also tell me exactly what he has eaten, and if he doesn't like whats on offer (turned his nose up at sweet and sour chicken and noodles the other day!) his keyworker always makes sure he has a yoghurt or banana as she doesn't want to send him home hungry.

How big is the baby group? My ds's room is only up to 6 children, and they have 2-3 members of staff, so it's much easier for them. I have worked in nurseries myself and sometimes in baby rooms of 9 or even 12 children, and with those numbers it is much harder to stick to individual routines and sometimes babies are left to cry as you try to get everyone in cots so staff can have lunch breaks etc.

cazzybabs Mon 04-Jul-11 09:26:53

Maybe she couldn't get to sleep - hence why she was left to cry. I have no idea but maybe they were trying to leave her to go to sleep. The trouble with nurseries (and I have had 3 go through) is that sometimes one child won't sleep and that disturbs all the other babies or one wakes up early and wakes up all the others. Mayhe they thought if they went out for a walk she might go to sleep in a buggy - but equally it is not fair on the other babies not to go out for a walk ... plus if she was tired she may not have been hungry at nursery.

I think you do need to adjust your expectations of nurseries - I remember being amused that one fellow parent was outraged his child (pre-school age) had caught threadworms at nursery and demanded a nursery nurse was in the toilet all the time to ensure all the children washed their hands. And only last week another parent was asking why their child had a [tiny]mark on their leg and why it hadn't been recorded in the accident book.

I am sure she isn't unhappy and all those things would to me seem common place in a nursery (remember as soon as you pass over your child to someone else you will find people do not do things as you would as other parents don;t) - but they only way you can be sure is to go and address your concerns with the head of nursery/had of the room

voddiekeepsmesane Mon 04-Jul-11 09:49:40

While I sympathise with you OP I do think your expectations are a bit too high. Having worked many years in nurseries before ds you have to take into account all the childrens needs. We have very few days that the weather allows a walk out of the nursery setting in this country so they probably took the opportunity while they could.

Let me set the scene - If all individual sleeps were taken into account at all times then there would have to be a least 1 staff member out at all times to watch over sleeping children. Some sleep straight after breakfast, some mid morning some late morning then have a late lunch etc etc etc. In a room of say 6 under 1s that may have 2/3 staff (2 is legal, 3 is good practice) this may leave only 1/2 staff members for up to 5 babies, so you see this may not work. To allow a child to sleep in a pushchair while on a walk or a slighly later sleep may have been the answer on that day.

While most nurseries try to cater as much as they can for the individual child there has to be a certain amount of institutional routines put in place.

lisad123 Mon 04-Jul-11 10:00:56

i think in all likely hood she had a bad day. They cant force her to sleep or eat so maybe the buggy was the only way she would sleep. You have to remember she may sleep well at home, in her cot, alone with no noise but there are other children in the room.
Maybe she didnt eat well because she was too busy watching/playing with others.
All in all, I think have a quiet word about her sleep routines, see how it goes and if your not happy then move her. But she needs time to settle.

BellyMonster Fri 15-Jul-11 19:39:09

Is it normal for her to completely flip out when I get back from work? She's hysterical and won't put me her down. She's absolutely fine with my boyfriend, happy playing and eating her tea. She's been at nursery all day but is fine when he picks her up. It's really stressing me out, I'm not sure if there's anything I can do or if she'll grow out of it? Has anyone else experienced this? [worried]

ThePippy Wed 20-Jul-11 11:03:51

I would say that most good nurserys do follow the home routine at that age and usually it is only when they move to toddlers at around 12-14 months that they are then shifted to a single nursery timetable which typically involves 1 long sleep all together after lunch. I would definitely raise this issue and if they don't change and accomodate your childs needs then I would move to a different nursery. Babies at 10 months need their own routine as they are all so different in their needs.

I would say however that even the good ones can't work miracles if your child refuses to eat or sleep one day, as they usually have 2-3 children each to work with so while they may try it doesn't always succeed. So work out if they tried or whether they are just not sticking to your requested routine before making a call.

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