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I've just recevied the contract for DS nursery in the post. Feel like I am failing him but because staying at home has been a struggle, no one understands

(28 Posts)
StellaWasADiver Tue 19-Aug-08 11:47:47

DS is 10 months. I go back to work in three weeks. 3 days a week in the office, half a day at home.

I have to work. At least until Christmas. I need to fulfill my employment contract so I don't have to pay back maternity pay. That maternity pay is covering DPs tax bill so there's no question, I have to do it.

I have spent all summer trying to find a childminder, but there are none nearby who can do the hours/days I need, and it would have to be close as I can't park at work - so I'd need to drive him to the CM, back to the house, then walk or bus to work. Same again in the evening, on top of an 8 hour day, would mean 10 hours with a CM - but the staff nursery is literally floors below me so he can do the hours I work.

The staff are all lovely and it is a great environment, freshly cooked meals, a huge garden, part of which is under cover for bad weather, lots of different activities etc...

And I have found maternity leave a complete lonely struggle, I stand out at baby groups as 'different' and no one is much interested, it's been so hard, and DP doesn't understand, though he tries... so everyone thinks I should be looking forward to it.

But after all that I think I am letting him down and I wish desperately that I didn't have to do it

Not sure I expect anyone to say anything, or if this is the right forum, I just needed to get that out, though I feel no better for it!

StellaWasADiver Tue 19-Aug-08 11:49:14

He's really just a tiny baby and he BFs so often in the day and sleeps on my lap a lot, I am trying to start getting him into the nursery's routine but he just cries if I don't feed him, he is so clingy and small

RubySlippers Tue 19-Aug-08 11:52:14

it sounds like a great nursery

this is so much harder on you than him

my DS went to nursery at 6 months ... it is difficult but i have bills etc to pay

i don't feel i am letting DS down - i put a lot of time and effort into finding the best care that i could and he has been very happy there

you will feel better once you have started work, and got into a new routine

anticipation is much worse IME

Tortington Tue 19-Aug-08 11:52:21

well i hope that going pback part time gives you the work/life balance you and he need.

he doesn't want a miserable mummy. and no one gives you medals for martyrdom.

be happy and cut yourself some slack

littleducks Tue 19-Aug-08 11:52:52

im a sahm, i didnt want to return to work for some of the reasons you suggest but honestly having a nursery on site at worh and you only work half the week sound tempting!!!!

Slubberdegullion Tue 19-Aug-08 11:53:58

oh Stella

do you want a non mn hug? I would love to give you one. Or a certified and approved mn punch on the arm?

Your ds will be fine, absolutely fine. As his nursery is so close will you be able to pop in at lunch breaks?

fluffyanimal Tue 19-Aug-08 11:54:59

You're not failing your ds. But it's one of those givens of motherhood that you just feel guilty if you have to put your child into day care when you go to work. The nursery sounds lovely! My ds started nursery at 10 months when I went back to work full-time. He loves it and it has done him the world of good, as he was quite shy but is now much better around groups of people, has learned lovely manners, is a very unfussy eater and independent in lots of things. He does loads of different activities that I don't suppose I'd imagine doing with him if I were looking after him at home. His speech, singing, counting and imaginative play are coming on in leaps and bounds. Yes I still feel guilty that I don't spend as much time with him as I'd like, but the nursery has clear benefits.

If you need the money and have to work, then don't beat yourself up about it. You've looked into it and found a good childcare solution. What more could you do? Don't be upset. It will all be fine.

hattyyellow Tue 19-Aug-08 11:55:05

I think the fear of the unknown is worse perhaps than the reality. It sounds like you're happy with the environment he will be in and you will actually be on site so if he's not settling you can pop down and calm him. Are you doing any settling in time?

My twin girls started nursery two mornings at 15 months and I hated it at first. The staff were lovely though and soon the girls cried because they didn't want to go home! I spent two mornings with them there just gradually moving away a bit and then leaving them. That helped as I could see the staff interacting well with the girls and them getting into various activities.

Please don't be so hard on yourself, it is really hard to make this adjustment and it sounds like he will be in great hands.

TheFifthApe Tue 19-Aug-08 11:55:20

can you bob in at lunchtime if the nursery (which sounds fab btw) is below you?

it will be FINE

3 days a week is great as you will still have days when he sleeps on your nap and feeds all day

and on other days he can be cuddled in the nursery smile

Pruners Tue 19-Aug-08 11:57:15

Message withdrawn

Uppagetta Tue 19-Aug-08 11:57:40

Hi StellaWasaDiver, I remember feeling like this too. My ds is in care for eight hours a day five days a week and when I first knew I was going to do this I felt like a failure and was so worried about my small boy that I cried for about a month. However something inside me knew that at least I needed to try it, I, like you was bored and lonely at home and needed some adult conversation.

I promise you are not letting him down - give yourself a week or two back at work and see what a difference that will make in what you are thinking. I am sure your wee boy is going to adjust to being there fine, mine did and now I have to drag him out each day - he doesn't want to leave.

I think it would be weird if we didn't feel some kind of sadness and upset at leaving our kids in daycare, but we have got to put it in perspective - he will be getting great interaction with other kids, healthy meals, lots of activities and routine, and you will be getting a chance to talk with other adults, some time-out from being a mum and a chance to have lunch in peace for a few days each week!

MrsMattie Tue 19-Aug-08 11:58:02

Loads of women feel this way. It's tough, but it will get a lot easier. And if you still feel this way after Xmas, maybe you could reassess the situation?

MillieMummy Tue 19-Aug-08 11:58:13

My DD went to nursery three days per week from 11.5 months old until she started school. She made lots of great friends, did lots of fab things and settled into school really well. DS who is now almost two started at 11 months and now doesn't even give me a backwards glance when I drop him off - he is too excited with the company and the great toys to be interested in the fact that I am leaving him.

I am much happier being able to work p-t and spend QT with my children - I am confident that the nursery are doing a really good job.

You are not letting your DS down !

MrsMattie Tue 19-Aug-08 11:58:48

Sorry, that sounded a bit harsh. I meant, 'loads of women feel this way' as in 'You are not alone'. Go easy on yourself xx

squeaver Tue 19-Aug-08 11:59:04

Stella - I remember your threads before about feeling lonely. Sorry you're still finding things a struggle but you have to stop being so hard on yourself.

Your lo one will be fine at nursery - it's amazing how resilient and adaptable they are. You may well meet some other mums there who you'll become friends with. And going back to work will maybe give you back a bit of balance.

Trust us all - it will all be good.

hattyyellow Tue 19-Aug-08 12:01:08

ps I work 3 days per week and I find it 100x easier to have a "mum/social/coffee group" life I'm happy with now. I hated being stuck at home everyday but I found some coffee groups a struggle.

Now that I'm not reliant on them for my only social contact I'm much more relaxed about going to toddler stuff and I enjoy it a lot more. Hope things get easier for you.

bundle Tue 19-Aug-08 12:01:16

I think the nursery option sounds fabulous, please don't worry about him he'll be fine and you'll be more contented by the sound of it too!

LilRedWG Tue 19-Aug-08 12:01:40

You are NOT letting him down. I am a SAHM and have recently put DD in nursery for five hours on a Friday just so that we get a break from each other.

I was feeling so guilty, but DD loves it. She is getting to intereact with other children and her speech is coming on leaps and bounds, as she is having to communicate.

I am having therapy at the moment and when I brought this up, I was told - firmly - that having a happy Mum is the best thing for DD. I guess what I am trying to say is, do what makes you as a family happy! You are not letting him down. The nursery sounds lovely and you are close enough that if he is poorly and needs taking home, you can be there in just a few minutes, not hours.

PortAndLemon Tue 19-Aug-08 12:01:47

I think the way you are feeling sounds opletely natural. And don't beat yourself up about getting into the nursery's routine at home. I did that with DS, which meant I spent the last few weeks of maternity leave very stressed, and still he never took to "nursery" stuff (bottle/cup feeding, going down in cot for naps, etc.) at home. He was absolutely fine at nursery, though, and I now think I should have just relaxed and enjoyed the last few weeks a bit more.

StellaWasADiver Tue 19-Aug-08 12:02:01

You're right custardo, and martyrdom doesn't suit me anyway. I guess I just want it all, and no one can have that.

If just feels selfish... mother's guilt I suppose?!

Ruby - I would be happier with a CM to be honest so part of me feels like it's not quite the best care I could find - I suppose that causes a lot of my guilt. Especially that thread the other day about a nursery worker thinking all parents are shit, well I just think a CM would be far more into her job. The keyworker for DS is visiting this week to see him at home and get to know him - so maybe she'll give me a bit more confidence too.

Yes I can pop in on breaks, they have an open door policy, BUT it might be hard to see him and have to go back to work - not sure.

When you leave for ML and you're still pregnant, it all seems so distant, but it's not, it's flown by, and now here I am, a year older, not in my pre-preg clothes, and having to act like I care about things that I really do not.

Oh - that's life...

Thanks everyone.

LilRedWG Tue 19-Aug-08 12:02:19

Bundle just said exactly what I was trying to whitter!

StellaWasADiver Tue 19-Aug-08 12:06:58

PortAndLemon - I'll take note of your warning, prior to this I was planning a really lazy couple of weeks, probably better for both of us than trying to timetable things...

It will be nice to have clean clothes for more than an hour at a time, and maybe have a bit of responsibility, though I do admit to feeling the full effects of baby-brain - I am going back to a different position than before and I am struggling to remember my new job title... hmm

TigerFeet Tue 19-Aug-08 12:07:36

It is so hard, but harder on the parents than the dc's imo. DD went to nursery from 6mo, I had no choice but to work either. I think that nursery was exactly the right environment for dd. She got love and cuddles from the staff - just because it wasn't 1 on 1 care didn't mean she was left to her own devices all day. She has loads of friends and goes to a lot of parties.

She leaves nursery on Thursday for good - off to school the week after next. I am as upset about that as I was when she started in the first place. She has been so well looked after at nursery and I am sad she won't be going there any more.

Of course I would have preferred that she wasn't there as often or for as long as she was but that was the way it has to be. Once she had settled and I could see she was happy and thriving it made it so much easier. I bet you find the same.

StellaWasADiver Tue 19-Aug-08 12:09:12

LilRedWg - I have to say I would LOVE that! Somehow each extra day makes it seem worse for him but I am sure he'll enjoy it - oh the idea of a day to myself though - despite this major wobble I'm having, part of me is excited about his settling in days blush

woodenchair Tue 19-Aug-08 12:11:55

The nursery sounds great, and the fact that he can match your hours will minimise the time away from you.

Don't feel guilty about going back to work. I work part time and know it make me a much better and happier mum. I make the most of the time we have together and pack lots of things in.

Baby brain will pass after a while and you'll get back into the swing of things I'm sure.

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