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To stay or go - what is best for DD's - advice please!

(7 Posts)
Meggymoose Mon 06-Aug-07 12:32:29

DH is going abroad to work from Sept for 1 year. Initially planned to take me and DD's (3.5yrs & 22months) with him - now we're not sure what to do. The decision on whether me and the girls should go too has always been based purely on what is best for them. We planned initially to all go because we thought that the girls would be better of with both parents even if this meant uprooting them from nursery.

DD1 is not a very confident child. She has been at her nursery 3 days per week since 9 months and is happy there. She is still a quiet child and interacts better with her friends in very small group or 1 to 1 scenarios. When faced with situations like birthday parties even with familiar friends from nursery she will stick closely to me and it's a struggle to get her to join in. I'm sure in this sense she is not too different from lots of children. We don't know whether pulling her put of the stable environment of nursery will be more potentially more damaging than living without seeing Daddy every day for a year? We would be going to France where she can either go to nursery there or stop at home with me and her younger sister. The nurseries there are all French speaking (DD1 is not, yet). On the one hand lots of people have told me that children easily adapt but on the other hand I don't want to put DD1 in a situation where she has a difficult time and her confidence gets knocked just before she starts school back in the UK next September. Nor do i want to withdraw her from social situations altogether (ie stay at home in France with me) if it is not the best thing to do on balance.

Have spoken to health visitor for advice and going to speak to keyworker at nursery this afternoon. Would be really grateful if anyone has another angle to add! Thanks

edam Mon 06-Aug-07 12:34:26

Difficult one but I think in your shoes I would all go too - a year is a very long time to be without your dh. And it would be very hard for dd to be without her daddy - a year is almost a third of her life!

stealthsquiggle Mon 06-Aug-07 12:36:56

Don't really know as I would go like a shot but my DC are not that shy.

However, DNiece started nursery in France speaking no French at all and was reported to be quiet and withdrawn for a while but she settled in the end and is thriving now - I know it is only for a year but if she learns French now it would be great for her.

Whereabouts in France? Any chance you could give her a mix of French and Ex-pat groups/activities?

witchandchips Mon 06-Aug-07 12:37:03

Go but perhaps not put her in nursery straight away, take her to the park and other places where she will meet other children and get her used to the french.

melsy Mon 06-Aug-07 12:37:21

That was exactly my 1st thoughts too on reading this edam. My dd1 would be soo upset to not see her daddy , however much I explain. It really is a very long time for a little one. Also good to give a child this experience and they would pick up the language soo quickly too, then they would have it for the rest of their lives.

RGPargy Mon 06-Aug-07 12:39:55

You should go!! Wait til she's settled in at your new French pad and then i would do what witchandchips has suggested.

Meggymoose Mon 06-Aug-07 15:14:32

Just spoke to keyworker at nursery and she was very helpful. She said she has no concerns about DD1. She said she is quiet and doesn't particularly offer comments in large group situations such as circle time but when there are 6 or 8 children siiting at the dinner table she will join in the conversation. She also offered to get one of the French-speaking Belgiun nursery nurses to do some french conversation work with DD and if necessary to get in touch with the relevant nursery in France to discuss DD and find out what the daily routine is so that DD can be prepared for it. She also offered to get some photos together of DD's friends to take with her (with parents permission) and to get the class to write to DD in France! How supportive!

The health visitor pointed out that whilst it will be difficult uprooting DD's and taking them to a new environment. it would also be difficult for DD's to learn to live on a day to day basis without daddy. Not only will daddy be gone but that I may change too because of added pressures of single-parenthood!

Not sure why I still feel so torn?

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