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Tell me about your LO's childcare experience

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#1 LipStick

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:58 AM

I have 14 month old (nearly 15 months) and we started childcare this week. The first week has just been orientation so we have been there every day for about 1-2 hrs. It has been a mixture of me being with her and yesterday I took her in and just left. She likes being in there when I am there (does tend to hover near me though) but as soon as I leave or if I go somewhere where she can't see me she starts to cry.

I know it's still early days and thankfully I don't go back to work for another 2 weeks so we have plenty of time to help her adjust but I was wondering how long it took your little one to adjust to childcare. Yes I do know every baby is different but it would help me to hear all the different stories. I just feel so sad and guilty sad.gif

#2 sarkazm76

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:06 AM

I feel for you - it's one of the hardest things to get through.  We started DS in the nursery room just after his 1st birthday.  I don't know if there was more than 3 days in about 7 months that he didn't cry, a lot, when I left him.  it was very distressing.  The ladies there did work well with us though and would always take him for cuddles so I didn't have to just put him down.  They told me he was always fine within a couple of minutes.  After he moved into the toddler room it was a much differnet story - he loved it and would just hug and kiss me and say 'bye mummy" and go play, lol.  Massvie difference.  He always struggles a little bit if he's had some time off (xmas hols/ being sick etc) but is usually ok by the end of the week - oh he goes Mon, Tues, Fri at the moment.
He's now been moved again into Pre-Kindy which we were not happy about as he only spent about 3 months in toddlers so seemed like a lot of change too quiickly but it turned out his whole class and one of the carers has moved too so much better.  He seems to be loving it.

Ok so I don't want you to think it took 7months+, lol.  Was probably hardest for the first month I suppose.  Then got better and better.  I also only got to spend 1 week settling him in so if you have 3 weeks that is awesome.  Try spending some time, popping out for an hour and coming back for another hour.  Then make it longer and longer.
Good luck original.gif

#3 carriesshoes

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:11 AM

I've placed both my kids in childcare at the age of 11 months and my daughter took about 6 weeks (2 days a week) to settle into a routine and not cry.  My son on the other hand took months.  He's only 20 months now and he's fine.

I think I cried just as much when I first dropped my little ones off.  It's so hard.  You are giving a piece of your heart to someone else to care for, and it's so hard!

They do get used to it, and will soon love going once they have built friendships with other little kids and relationships with their carers.

#4 Guest_divineM_*

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:14 AM

DD was 10 months when she started but we were doing half days for a while since I didn't go back to work until she was 13 months. she was ok, not much crying or just a little sook and then was fine i was told. Her biggest issue was that she found it too stimulating to sleep there properly, but she coped with that ok. She then had a regression around 18 months old, cried so much that I had a few calls to come get her and I had to leave work. this resolved itself all of a sudden a few weeks later and she seemed to love it from then on until Christmas. She goes back next week - we'll see how we go after a long break...Please don't feel guilty, I know that's hard but it gets easier as you go.

#5 gemini2

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:33 AM

Hi OP,

I can only tell you my experience with my DDs.  My eldest is very shy and scared of strangers.  By strangers I mean everyone else except my husband, myself and her younger sister.  I have done so much reading on her temperament and come to the conclusion that she might/might not be ready for group situations and that's still ok.  When I started taking both of my children to Playgroup recently, my eldest would yell and scream if anyone looked at her, pulled on my clothes and refused to be anywhere but next to me.  My younger DD on the other hand was completely opposite.  I was expecting the same reactions from my eldest when we started CC orientation this last two weeks, but you know what, she didn't even cry one bit.  Although I haven't left her by herself at CC just yet I think she would be alright when the time comes.  I'm intending to spend another two to three weeks orientating her, although we have to pay next week, until she's comfortable enough in the new environment.  Lots of positive comments about going to CC to play with little friends seem to settle her a bit.  She will also have her favourite cuddly and a photo of us in her bag for comfort.

Just letting you know that you are not alone.

Edited by gemini2, 18 January 2013 - 10:37 AM.

#6 LipStick

Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:37 AM

*Big hugs* to you all!  hhugs.gif

I just dropped her off and she started crying as soon as we got in the door, so I stayed with her while she ate lunch (she ate which i think is a good thing!) and bthen left after that. She is having a sleep there today so I hope she didn't cry for too long.

Being a mum is so friken hard!! I was even considering getting a job in childcare just so I can be with her! hahah original.gif Funny what thoughts go through your head.

She does love other people and kids so I know its not that that is upsetting her, it's more that she would like me to be there with her. As much as I would love to unfortunately I have to go back to work.

Reading all your comments though has given me faith that even though it may be a long road she will end up liking childcare. Thank you again, it's nice to not feel like I'm alone.  xox

#7 The Falcon

Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:58 PM

My 2 started daycare at 12 weeks and 14 weeks respectively so never had seperation issues as by the time they were old enough to be really aware of it they were completely used to it.  I have spent a lot of time in our centre though, as initially I was going into the centre all the time to breastfeed so I watched a lot of other peoples drop offs.

The things I have noticed that seem to help reduce the seperation anxiety at drop off, or keep the crying to a minimum are:

1. Always hand bub to a carer, never just put them down to play
2. Don't be tempted to sneak away, always say good bye so they know you are leaving
3. Drop them off at breakfast time so they are keen to get stuck into it and less concerned about you leaving
4. If they do start to cry get out of there as quick as you can, don't try and comfort them as the carers can do that, and then longer you hang around for the longer they will cry
5. Always drop them off with a smile on your face, don't let them know it breaks your heart to leave them!

#8 tiefbloom

Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:33 AM

I started my DD at daycare at 14months also. Even though she is totally independent, curious, etc she still has some trouble with coping when it was time for me to leave. So the best way is to just take her in, give her a hug and a kiss then hand her over to a carer.

Despite the crying at drop off time she loved the new environment of day care then something changed and she was always miserable. She didn't want to go, she would pitch huge fits in the morning and she would bawl her eyes out when it was pick up time.

It turned out that because she was advanced for her age she was bored in her group so after discussion with the daycare providers she was moved to the next age group up and now she just LOVES IT. She can't wait to go each morning!

I do think the trick is to hand them straight over to the carer, not linger, just walk out and let them handle it. Also, never leave, come back and then leave again. It just makes things worse.

I'm sure she cries occasionally throughout the day although the carers assure me she doesn't, but she cries with me at home also. It's never smooth sailing at home and I feel at daycare there are more distractions and more fun to be had.

#9 Duck-o-lah

Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:44 AM

1. Always hand bub to a carer, never just put them down to play
2. Don't be tempted to sneak away, always say good bye so they know you are leaving
3. Drop them off at breakfast time so they are keen to get stuck into it and less concerned about you leaving
4. If they do start to cry get out of there as quick as you can, don't try and comfort them as the carers can do that, and then longer you hang around for the longer they will cry
5. Always drop them off with a smile on your face, don't let them know it breaks your heart to leave them!

Really good advice. It's been a while, DS started when he was just shy of one. He cried at every drop off. I can't remember how long it took him to stop, but it was certainly no less than 4 weeks (sorry, I know it's not what you want to hear!). I remember reading the above points on various websites and found they helped immensely.

I chose one carer in particular who DS seemed to prefer and handed him directly to her every morning. Over two years later she is still at the centre and she is clearly his favourite original.gif

I found the longer I lingered at drop off, the worse it became for everyone involved, so I would hang around for a little while to settle him, but once I handed him over, that was it.

As more and more children started at the centre I would see parents drop off their babies in the first weeks. They would cry and cry and the poor parents would hang around outside the door, their hearts breaking as they went off to work sad.gif On almost every occassion, it only took moments after the parents left for the child to be distracted by something and stop crying. It just really sucks that the crying is the last thing you see before you leave, it stays with you all day I know!

Good luck OP, I'll be going through the same thing again in just over 6 months!

#10 Blossom73

Posted 25 January 2013 - 08:16 AM

QUOTE (kate789 @ 24/01/2013, 01:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The things I have noticed that seem to help reduce the seperation anxiety at drop off, or keep the crying to a minimum are:

1. Always hand bub to a carer, never just put them down to play
2. Don't be tempted to sneak away, always say good bye so they know you are leaving
3. Drop them off at breakfast time so they are keen to get stuck into it and less concerned about you leaving
4. If they do start to cry get out of there as quick as you can, don't try and comfort them as the carers can do that, and then longer you hang around for the longer they will cry
5. Always drop them off with a smile on your face, don't let them know it breaks your heart to leave them!

This is brilliant advice and worth doing.

I started DS at 11 months going 3 days a week and to be honest, it took about 8 weeks for the tears to stop on drop off and pick up (extra guilt!!!). I would always phone and check after about 30 minutes and he was fine, it was just the separation and reappearance that was hard.

He is now going FT and although the beginning of the year was hard again after a 2 week break, he does love it, and has settled well and in a new room.

#11 LipStick

Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:03 AM

Thanks for all your replies and there is some great advice! We are onto week 2 of fulltime daycare and apart from the crying at each drop off, I am told she is doing really well!

It is very hard though because as someone said, the last thing you see if your child crying for you and that's how you feel they are throughout the day. But in my little ones case, it's not true thankfully! I can't wait for the day when she doesn't cry at drop off!

This has been the most hardest thing I have had to do (so far).

Thanks again for the responses. original.gif

#12 erindiv

Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:07 AM

kate789 has some great points there.

Can you do another orientation? The centre my two will be attending in a few weeks allows for as many orientation sessions as you and your child need. I'm opting for just one as both of my children are used to going from one place to another (they spend every second weekend with their father) but the option is there.

That said, it's going to be hard at first, of corse. A friend of mine just had a terrible attack of the guilts when her LO started childcare not long ago. She was reassured by the carers later in the day when she called to check on her DS, they said he was having a lovely time. Indeed when she picked him up at the day she said he seemed to not want to leave all his new 'friends'.

I hope it works out well for you, try not to be too hard on yourself.

#13 Leee

Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:16 PM

DS 13 months started childcare this week. He was ok during orientation but this week he has cried his little heart out, hysterical. He has really bad separation anxiety at the moment, I can't be more than a metre away, will cry if I walk in the room and DH is holding him or has been playing nicely (which is rare). Adding to that he is BF and he refuses to drink his lunch bottle, won't drink water and will have a little yoghurt and nothing else.

Even though when I pick him up from childcare, the minute he sees me he is hysterical, I suppose I at least feel comfort that before he sees me he is ok sad.gif

#14 Rainbow Brite

Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:07 PM

Hi OP. I'm not much help but I dropped my DS almost 1 to FDC this week and he loved it straight away which was such a relief. The advice from PP is great a d I agree with the point about handing baby straight to a carer.

Good luck original.gif

#15 mm1981

Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:20 PM

My son still cries sometimes when I drop him off at childcare and he is almost 3.  But he also puts on a show if I leave him with my husband, my mum or the inlaws.  He loves all of them, so I don't think he is that upset by childcare.

I was told the best thing to do is not linger as it makes it worse.  It is kind of out of sight, out of mind.  Don't do a long, drawn out goodbye, a quick kiss and cuddle, hand over to the carers and leave.

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