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Discuss everything related to paid childcare here, including childminders, nannies, nurseries and au pairs.


Can I say/do anything?

20 replies

Prufrock · 25/03/2005 17:10

I attend a local M&T group, and there is a childminder theer who is not very nice to one of her charges. This baby is 13 months, but was v. premature, so looks younger than my 11 month ds. It spends practically the whole 2 hours crying, because the cm will not hold it - apparently the baby is "attention seeking" and "awkward". She puts the kids drink in front of her but will not help her to hold it because "she should be able to do it for herself by now", which the kid patently cannot do. I, and others have had conversations with her about whether the baby is OK, but she just says that she has to learn, and that she doesn't have time to carry the baby around all the time, and that it's the parents fault because they do carry her around all the time. The CM is not the most affectionate woman with her charges, but apart from her treatment of this baby seems to be OK.

I'm not sure what, if anything, I can do - I have tried subtleness - asking if she wants me to hold the baby whilst she drinks her coffee - but just got told that it was fine, she (the baby) had to get used to being left. Now I know that having a baby constantly on your hip can be wearing, but I just don't feel her treatment is right - and I'm sure that if it were my baby I wouldn't want her to be treated like this.

OP posts:

ggglimpopo · 25/03/2005 17:14

Message withdrawn


PuffTheMagicDragon · 25/03/2005 17:17


I think any parent would want to know if this was happening, but as you don't know them, it's difficult to know how they could be contacted, even if you were able to do it anonymously.


chipmonkey · 25/03/2005 17:32

Prufrock, please try to let the parents know somehow. If they are the sort who carry the baby around all the time this would surely be unnacceptabe to them and they'd want to know. A prem baby has to be allowed to develop at its own pace which will ba close to its gestational age rather than date of birth. The poor baby can't stick up for herself!


Stilltrue · 25/03/2005 23:26

Would the M&T group leader have the parents' contact details? Could she be an intermediary? It seems unnecessarily cruel to behave like this towards a helpless baby, regardless of the prmaturity issue . Your story is really upsetting; if I were that little girl's mother, i'd want to know .


Beetroot · 25/03/2005 23:27

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

rubles · 26/03/2005 00:20

Another idea is maybe if there is a local childminder network coordinator for the area. I know that we have one in this area, although that is probably a long shot as s/he probably won't know who the parents are.
But do try and let the parents know, it could be me!


ggglimpopo · 26/03/2005 00:23

Message withdrawn


PuffTheMagicDragon · 26/03/2005 00:28

Prufrock, I haven't been able to stop thinking about this, it's distressing thinking about a written description, let alone sitting there witnessing it .

Is there anyone at the M&T group who might know who the parents are, so they can be told?


lunavix · 26/03/2005 07:55

Worse case senario contact the Early Years development in your local council (they usually have a person who relates to the childminders) or contact Ofsted.

I personally think (as a childminder) it's disgraceful. Poor little thing


WideWebWitch · 26/03/2005 07:59

Oh god Prufrock, tell the mother. I'd want to be told, wouldn't you? Poor baby. The woman doesn't deserve to be a cm.


emmatmg · 26/03/2005 08:07 you go to the same M&T as me???

Same situation CM and child. He's older now but as a baby (6-7 months I would guess) she would just leave him on the mat/floor/carpet to cry. He's a toddler now but he always seems so unhappy there, just wandering about silently.

I do think thje other CM/s there said something to her as they don't talk now and she's very wary of them.

I agree with others purfrock, please tell the parents or someone.


shoutingposter · 26/03/2005 08:12

Make friendly chit-chat, ask what the baby's name is .. full name like you might know the parents .. then tell her you don't

then look up your local phone book to see if they're listed in your area .. chances are parents will live fairly nearby

I think that's appalling treatment .. it doesn't matter how old the child is, if it can't hold a cup, it can't

Nothing you say to the childminder will change her treatment of the child .. she thinks she's right, she's doing it in public FGS .. what on earth does she do behind closed doors


Prufrock · 26/03/2005 11:17

Oh well, at least you've confirmed that I am not being over critical and that I am justified in doing something. This woman is part of the group of childminders who are the very cliquey "core" of the M&T group, so apart from me and my friend everyone else is actually sympathetic to the CM
I don't know the parents - don't even know the childminders name. I will have to do some seemingly friendly digging when we next have M&T. Probably make me unpopular, but only 3 months until we leave here.

OP posts:

morningpaper · 26/03/2005 11:29

Prufrock I see a lot of this kind of thing at a big M&T group we go to. There are a group of childminders who ignore their screaming unhappy charges for the duration. I have often picked one of them up, thinking it's mum must have lost it, but then the childminder says "Oh that's mine!" It makes me VERY unhappy but I don't think there's anything I can do - I'm sure the parents are paying very little for this kind of care and probably have an idea of what they are letting themselves in for. Unfortunately there is not just one or two but several women that are doing this.

It was the reason that I opted for nursery care and wouldn't even contemplate a childminder when I returned to part-time work - even though I pay twice the cost, I'd never let my child be in this position after what I regularly see.


RTKangaMummy · 26/03/2005 11:45

I am a childminder and she is deffo giving childminders a bad name

Poor baby


pixiefish · 26/03/2005 11:48

If this was my baby I'd want to know. Tell the parents if you can


PuffTheMagicDragon · 26/03/2005 12:55

Prufrock, you're definitely not overcritical and completely justified in doing something.

If you can't get the info you need via friendly digging, then as a last resort, you could follow her home to find out her address. Children are usually dropped off or picked up at set times from childminders, so you'd be able to intercept the parents. Sounds drastic, but like I say a last resort.

Good luck - as KangaMummy says, this woman is giving childminders a bad name, and as shouting poster pointed out - if this is going on in public, what's going on behind closed doors? Makes my blood run cold tbh.


HappyMumof2 · 26/03/2005 14:01

Message withdrawn


RTKangaMummy · 26/03/2005 15:02

How many children is she caring for?

One other way to get her would be if she has too many.

Sounds like she is just doing it for the money rather than because she really likes to be with children and enjoys teaching them things.etc.

Ask if she has any vacancies as you have a friend moving to the area who wants a minder for her 3 year old.

Don't say baby as she can only have 1 under 12 months. Unless special circumstances.

Good luck.


feelingold · 26/03/2005 18:19

I am a childminder and I agree with everyone that this behaviour is disgraceful.
Find out any info about her that you can and ring OFSTED's helpline on 0845 601 4771 asap.
This childminder is being paid to look after this child whether she is clingy, crying or whatever and as a mum and a childminder I am appalled. I hope other mums who use a childminder are not disturbed by this, we are not all the same.

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