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will she ever let me leave her without the performance

(11 Posts)
gingernutlover Wed 12-Aug-09 08:05:47

dd started nursery at 11 months and is now nearly 4 so has been there for 3 years with same children same nursery nurses and is happy to be there during the day - she goes 3 days a week while i work

but every morning and the night before we get "the performance" she is at times hysterical, getting herself worked up and crying and saying she doesnt want to go and that she doesnt like nursery and that she has no friends.

This happens on and off all the time

I do honestly believe she is happy at nursery and that she has friends. I have seen her playing happily with them, I have seen the photos of when she is there, I have spoken to the nursery nurses. She constantly talks about her keyworker and several friends. She went to a birthday party on saturday with them all and had a ball

She seems to have a realt hing about me leaving her, with anyone except my mum and with dh.

This is doing my head in as it's winding us both up and I dont know how to help her feel more secure about it.

She starts school in just over a year and I am so worried about how she will cope with a new school and probably a childminder/after school club/breakfast club

She is clingy most of the time when we are not at home, she wants me to be there holding her hand or cuddling her pretty much all of the time, it is exhausting me and I am beginning to get really worried that we have a serious problem.

gingernutlover Wed 12-Aug-09 08:15:01

have put this on behaviour/development too as after i read it back i realised this is not just about nursery sad but any ideas very very welcome

nannynick Fri 14-Aug-09 08:05:12

I feel you are right to call it a "performance" as it sounds to me as if she is performing for you. Does she get a reaction from you? Have you tried changing your reaction to see if how you react to her performance makes any difference. Has she ever been dropped off by anyone else, her dad for example... is there a performance then?

Is she an only child? From how you describe her at home, I see her as being an only child... i.e. no siblings. Does she play independently at home? If not, try to encourage that a lot more. Invite friends over to play, at age 4 children will play quite nicely with a friend for a while. If possible invite a friend who will also be going to the same school, so that once starting school they have a friend in their class.

gingernutlover Fri 14-Aug-09 15:59:28


thanks for the reply

yes, i do believe it is a "performance" i always give her a big cuddle when i leave her at nursery and she insists on being handed to the ladies there - something I am very concerned about her starting school as she wont be able to do that there. I dont get upset visibly i dont think and always just say, "have a lovely bye"

how do you suggest I react? I might be missing something really obvious maybe.

yes she is an only child and yes she does play quite well on her own for periods at home.

No one else can drop her at nursery, it has to be me unfortunatly

I am a reception teacher and I do think she is very aware that i leave her at nursery and go to spend the day with a class of children the same age as her, and maybe she is upset by that

She has always been very clingy and over protective of my attention and affection, as a small toddler she would regualrly have tantrums if me and dh cuddled and would climb in between us, she also is very jealous of the cat and hates me to stroke him

hmmmm this is all starting to sound worrying isnt it ?????????

I should probably add, I do feel this is my fault, as I had bad PND and it took a long time for me to bond with dd and enjoy being a mum, I do think she knows it too.

nannynick Fri 14-Aug-09 21:20:34

As a reception class teacher you will know far better than I do with regard to the best way of dropping off a child at school.
My gut feeling is that making it quick and without the cuddle would work best - so... "bye, see you at 5pm" or whatever time they finish.

No sibling but she you have a family cat - so she is jealous of the cat... well that would fit - though by this age you would have thought that she knows she is the centre of your universe, rather than the cat.

Have you tried the photo of mummy in her pocket trick? That's one I suspect you may have told parents of your reception class about... if little Johnny misses you lots... then put a photo of yourself in his pocket - so when he misses you lots, he can look at you and say "see mummy later".

gingernutlover Fri 14-Aug-09 21:41:25

if i leave without giving her the cuddle she has a huge tantrum and will cling to my legs and be dragged along the floor rather than let go sad

also, she is funny about taking anything from home to nursery - especially photos - she is a real fuss pot about losing things, or things getting broken or ruined.

arrrrrrggggggghhhhhhhhhhh don't feel like anything i do will work. I know you are right about the short quick leaving but how???????????

maybe a sticker chart or bribing her is a good idea. Like if you go to nursery like a big girl you get a sticker and if you get 3 stickers in a week you can have sweeties at the weekend??

BTW she only goes to nursery 3 days a week and it is always the 1st of the 3 days that is the worst, on these days she can be sobbing and getting upset from the minute we leave home. She starts whinging for cuddles the minute she gets up and knows she is going to nursery.

gingernutlover Fri 14-Aug-09 21:43:53

this morning i showed her a new pack of hairbands that i had bought and she refused to wear any of them to nursery "incase they got pulled out of my hair". Then she wouldnt even let me open the packet and said they had to stay in it forever.

Am I getting worked up for nothing or is there somthing underlying here? I worry she is not like other children.

bookswapper Fri 14-Aug-09 21:47:36

it does sound like a control issue to me. I had to plough through it with my DS too...he was famous. What helped was other mums taking him to nursery for me with his little friends.

macherie Fri 14-Aug-09 21:48:41

Ds2 used to do this, I was at my wits end. I got my mum, at huge inconvenience, to do the drop off for one week, and it was like magic, it broke the cycle and he was fine after that. If he ever had a wobble after that I just handed him to the teacher and ran, prolonging it made it worse.

Last year dd was the same when she started pre-school, she loved it there but as you
say she turned 'googbye" into a total performance. By her second year dh had changed jobs so he was able to drop her off and she barely bothered to say goodbye to him at all, just ran in.

I think with both ds and dd they just know exactly how to push mummies buttons and make me feel guilty blush

I read that you can't get anyone to drop her off except you, but really I'd say talk to the nursery nurses, tell them you are going to try the drop and run approach, take a deep breath and do it.

I will probably be much worse for you than her!

gingernutlover Sat 15-Aug-09 07:22:38

i think you are right nacherie and book swapper, and when she was little it was fine to give her over for a cuddle but she's getting so big now. I dont see all the other children arrive as its a daycare nursery so they all arrive over a bout an hour, but I have not seen any of her firends beign handed over like she insists

gingernutlover Sat 15-Aug-09 07:23:35

d'oh macherie

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