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Settling in a nightmare - don't think I can cope

(4 Posts)
CheerfulSoul Fri 14-Aug-09 09:40:50

I've been settling my 1 year old into nursery this week. Just 2 hour slots. He cries, on and off, from the moment he realises I'm going to leave until I collect him again.

I'm distraught that I'm causing him this much pain but I have to go back to work to pay the mortgage. It's making me miserable because I can't stop thinking about the next session and the tears. Am I doing the right thing? When do I stop and try something different? Or do I just need to get a grip and weather the storm?

Everyone tells me "he'll settle in eventually" but right now, in the middle of it all, that's no comfort to me. All I can see is his little, red, tear-stained face sad.

Sparklytwinkletoes Fri 14-Aug-09 09:54:23

Oh poor you Cheerful - I went back to work when DS was 9 months old and found it a real heart-wrench so know exactly how you feel.

(blush I used to phone my DH from the car park in tears for support).

Is it possible that you could change your 'leaving' tactics, its just that you mention he cries 'from the moment he realises you are going to leave' perhaps you could try not let him know when that was going to happen and see if that helps at all.

I read somewhere that you should always say 'goodbye, see you later', as it helps them manage their separation anxiety but think that your DS is probably not quite ready for this yet. As he settles in, you will get to this point naturally.

So sometimes I would 'fly him in' (complete with aeroplane noises all the way up the corridor) then drop a bag and run but would equally sometimes (read more often!) involve me staying for 10-15 mins or so whilst he transferred from me to nursery nurse, then they got him engaged with something?

I believe that this is a difficult time for him, but certainly not that its 'cruel'.

Other things you could try to are to always go in with lots of smiles, talk to him in an excited voice, tell him what is going to happen at every stage, from leaving the house, travelling in car / pushchair / entering the building etc. The repetition of the stages will help settle him into a routine - which babies like.

Ensure that you greet the girls with lots of smiles and excitement - it will all help engender a feeling of security for your DS about the environment you're leaving him in. I don't know if they can really pick up on our stresses, but I worked with the basis that if there was a possibility that it would help him, then it was something I'd do.

I don't know if any of this is even remotely helpful, but I hope things get easier for you both really soon.

CheerfulSoul Fri 14-Aug-09 17:54:39

Thanks Sparklytwinkletoes. It's great to get some support from someone else who has been through it. I will try some different drop-off tactics and see what works best for him. I'm glad you think it's not cruel, because that's how I feel.

atworknotworking Fri 14-Aug-09 18:06:00

Im a CM now but when i did my tt my then nearly 2yo went to nursery so I've now been on both sides of the fence, I to felt sad about it as DD was not amused, the staff were lovely though and took her straight to the book corner, sat her on their knee and would read to her she still talks about the nice lady (her then keyworker) and still sees her and send a xmas card to the nursery and she's 9 now, she wants to look after children too when she grows up.

It will get easier, be positive about the whole dropping off bit even if your heart is breaking, children do pick up on how you are feeling, they are part of you. My DD used to take something favourite in to show the nice lady which helped and I encourage my mindees to do the same, in a couple of months time it will be all over with and she won't want to go home.

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