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to consider changing child minder?

58 replies

solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 14:44

Should have perhaps name changed for this. Hmm

DC has been with CM for just over a year now. Happy there on the whole, made lots of lovely friends and OH and I were so pleased we found someone we were happy with after a shaky start.

A few incidents have cropped up lately which have started to affect my confidence in her.

Just before the summer break (term time only) on several occasions I picked up DC and noticed very visible marks on face which definitely weren't there at drop off. Nothing horrendous or anything, just scratches or red marks, but nevertheless definitely noticeable.
Just to clarify: I completely understand he will get bumps and grazes, I'm not fussed by this in the slightest, it's the fact that every time this happened and I pointed them out, CM seems surprised by these marks and apparently hadn't noticed them at all, so obviously no idea how they happened either. These marks were noticeable, I can't understand her surprise at them, it's as if she's not looked at his face all day!

Now I'm a primary teacher and as such am totally used to minor bumps and grazes. However, I know if a child is leaving my care with a visible mark they did not arrive in the morning with. This is with a ratio of 1:30! And also pretty basic safeguarding.

Next point, he seems to come back in a change of clothes (spare trousers etc I put in his bag) a LOT. Some weeks it's every day. She is claiming his nappy leaks. His nappy has not leaked (whilst at home with me) since he was a tiny baby. It just NEVER happens. His stools are fairly consistently firm. I just can't make sense of this. The clothes are always in a real mess. Some I've had to chuck.

This is the main issue I have:
Collected yesterday, noticed he's in spare clothes again. Get home, get clothes out of bag, the seat of trousers are soaked, smells absolutely vile. Looks like they've been rinsed out or something. This sounds strange but it absolutely did not smell like my child's poo. I might be alone on this, but I know what my child's poo smells like.
In addition, his body suit was untouched.
If his nappy had leaked, how did it manage to cover the seat of his trousers yet leave his body suit completely untouched?

Must have sat in something I thought, (was guessing dog poo, as it smelt so vile and CM does have a very old dog that stays outside) so I asked her the next day.
She told me she doesn't know why it happened. WTF?
"Oo, I don't know, maybe he sat in some dinner, I can't remember." She was quite evasive and weird about it.

What do I do? I cannot make sense of this. I really dont mind what has gone on, if he's sat in something, it doesn't matter at all, just be straight with me! Same with the cuts etc, I completely expect accidents to happen but I just have a gut feeling she's not being straight with me.

I just don't feel right about taking DC back there now. AIBU?

Sorry this is so long and possibly very poorly explained, this is down to typing on my phone and trying to get it written within a nap time! Grin

OP posts:

LemonBreeland · 03/09/2015 14:48

YANBU. It sounds like she is not keeping a close enough eye on him. The marks on the face and not knowing what happened would concern me. My CM is very hot on that, on the very rare occasions it has happened.

It does sound like she is just not changing his nappy often enough either, adn I would expect her to know exaclty why his trousers were so dirty and not be evasive.


StillStayingClassySanDiego · 03/09/2015 14:50

I would be unhappy with her lack of explanations and evasiveness.

I'd be looking to take him elsewhere.


solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 14:51

Oh bloody hell.

This is what I thought. How can I take him back next week now?! I didn't sleep last night worrying about this.

I've got a horrible feeling her ratio isn't what she claims too.

OP posts:

TeaPleaseLouise · 03/09/2015 14:53

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

StillStayingClassySanDiego · 03/09/2015 14:54

Do you have family to help out while you look elsewhere, look at a day nursery perhaps?


Hellocampers · 03/09/2015 14:56

Hi op I am a cm and adding hastily not working today. Grin

Move him. Explanations to cuts/bruises should be readily forthcoming and documented and most if all make commen sense.

The change of clothes is wierd. Accidents happen occasionally and kids do get wet/muddy but again the explanations should make sense.

You should be 100% happy with childcare. Anything less isn't acceptable.


MrsAukerman · 03/09/2015 14:58

Could the scratches be from the dog?


solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 15:00

I'm hoping my DM will be able to have him while I look for alternatives. I'm seeing someone on Saturday.
As far as the leaking nappies go, I thought it was unrealistic to expect her to change him as often as I do.
As a FTM I was desperate not to have silly expectations of childcare
Now I feel like a really shit mum and that I've let him down and possibly put him at risk. Oh God, why didn't I act on this earlier?

OP posts:

milkingmachine1 · 03/09/2015 15:00

Oh dear, that doesn't sound good. I'd be very unhappy if my childminder did this.

My DC has been with our childminder for about a year and a half and all scratches, spots, basically any kind of mark and accidents are always noted in the day book and mentioned at pick ups. Also any change of clothes, even if they just got wet, is mentioned. I would be concerned if my cm said she didn't know why something had happened, it would make me wonder how much supervision is going on. I'm afraid you'll need to be direct about this and explain you're not happy.


longdiling · 03/09/2015 15:02

Another childminder who thinks yanbu. The evasiveness is very odd and I can't think of a non sinister reason for it. I'll admit that sometimes I notice a scratch has appeared on a younger mindees facebut as they havent cried don't know exactly how it got there. I'm always very upfront about that though and always know what the child was doing so can hazard a good guess. The poo issue is very odd...


Pleurepaslabouchepleine · 03/09/2015 15:04

YANBU - I'm a CM and I'm trying to be as transparent as I can possibly be. The marks : I would give an explanation for it and if it happens often maybe it means she is not watching them enough,it's a safeguarding issue. I agree with poster who said that the cm mustn't change your baby enough. Do you know what is her ratio ? She is not allowed more than one under one year old and no more than 3 in the early years group. She could be in breach of her registration. Sorry op Sad


solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 15:07

She definitely has more than that at times, but has other help. However I have never seen them myself when I pick up and drop off.

OP posts:

starfishmummy · 03/09/2015 15:09

She should know what is happening to dc in her care and be able to explain. That would worry me.


MrsJorahMormont · 03/09/2015 15:11

The fact she's being evasive would concern me more than anything else. I would be looking to move.


HSMMaCM · 03/09/2015 15:13

I am a CM watching a child sleep and sometimes the children get scratches, which I haven't seen appear, but I would tell a parent on collection and apologise. Most of the time I know why they are there and try and stop it happening. Nappies leak sometimes ... but not every day. If a child in my care sat in dog poo (I don't have a dog), I would simply tell the parent the truth.

I would be more concerned about the evasiveness than the scratches and changes of clothes, because if she was completely open, you would have explanations for everything and be able to judge if it was reasonable.

Check her ratios on collection. Can you drop by to pick up early and see how many children are there? She should be able to tell you how many children are there and which ages at any time. Has she been busier over the school holidays? CMs often are.

Anyway ... go with your gut feeling. If it doesn't feel right, then it probably isn't.


ppeatfruit · 03/09/2015 15:13

I was a CM/nanny and would be very unsure about this. Does your ds LIKE to go there ? Does he smile when he sees her? Does she smile kindly at him when she sees him?

There is no way that I wouldn't have known about marks on faces and I would've told the parents straight away, also about the changing and keeping the children well away from a dog or dog poo.


WhyCantIuseTheNameIWant · 03/09/2015 15:14

It sounds as though she is a bit 'relaxed' in her care.
One thing I have noticed recently is when my dd needs her nails cutting, she scratches her face. The other bits, I can't answer for. She took the trousers off as they were dirty, so she knew they were dirty. Easy to know where she took them off. Near food, near animals?
Is your ds old enough to say what happens? "Played with doggy" ?


solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 15:18

He actually loves going there, and he does really love her. He talks about her when he's not there and looks forward to going.

We had such a horrendous time finding someone suitable I maybe just wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt about scratches etc as they were minor.

I feel fucking dreadful now. The signs were there weren't they?

OP posts:

StillStayingClassySanDiego · 03/09/2015 15:22

You should stop being so hard on yourself, your lad appears happy and from what you've just posted looks forward to going.

If your Mum can help out while you and dh look for something else, that's good isn't it? it sorts out the immediate problem of childcare next week.


TheOddity · 03/09/2015 15:25

Nope. I don't like any of this!

Another who thinks it is best to move him. Evasiveness is really not on. I cannot remember more than a few incidents age 1-2 where I was given a bag of nappy stained clothes. I wouldn't go with someone with a dog either personally. You can do much better OP, ask around for a recommendation.


TheOddity · 03/09/2015 15:27

The scratches I really wouldn't have worried about, it is your unease about her responses and her lack of documented injury forms and explanations that sets the alarm bell ringing in my head. What is she hiding?!

Don't beat yourself up, it is precautionary. Your little lad is obviously still doing great if he is happy there!


MiddleAgedandConfused · 03/09/2015 15:30

Trust your instincts.


solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 15:30

Thank you classy Smile

The thing is she came highly recommended, has a long waiting list of unborn children, so is very popular and we'll thought of.

Feel like I can't trust my own judgement now.

OP posts:

solidarityplease · 03/09/2015 15:32


OP posts:

dustarr73 · 03/09/2015 15:33

Would she be letting other kids where your kids clothes.That would explain the different smell of poo.

The evasiveness would worry me,after all she mightnt notice the first scratch but at this stage f its happening more often,she should be able to determine whats causing it.Maybe the dog is scratching or one of the other kids but if she is not noticing this,thats very poor form.

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