If I were you I would stick with it for now (if part of your feelings are based on the three sessions so far) and see how it goes. You can always pull her out in a few weeks if you feel like it. I personally think childcare offers good structure and different opportunities. As PP have said, I think I'm a better mother now because of it. I always think my son is happier and has learnt things he might not have just with me. I also end up more able to spend quality time with him because I do jobs/errands/work when I can while he is in care, which leaves me open to just being with him after I collect him. I remember you were frustrated by the sickness aspect, too, and as frustrating as it can be I'm hoping that will pass soon enough.
Other things I would think about - are you likely to look for other work soon? Is it a childcare that may be difficult to enrol in again at a later date ie is there a risk of it booking out? If that happens, what is the possible impact for your family?
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19-04-2014 20:18 #11
19-04-2014 21:37 #12Senior Member
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I worked in childcare for 13 years and it has been my decision not to put my children into childcare - one is 5 years old, the other is 2. It suits me, as being home with them is right up my alley. I'm happy to do all the same sorts of activities at home that I used to provide when working in childcare. I have brought my children regularly to playgroup, kindagym etc. We go to events at the various libraries around and so forth. We go to shows and exhibitions etc. My five year old has just started school and she is extremely confident and has no social issues. She makes friends very easily and children seem to be very attracted to her. She was chosen to be a student councillor based on her confidence and ability to express herself.
I guess what I am saying, is that if it suits you and your personality, then keep her at home with you and find your own way to socialize her. I'll never believe that childcare is a necessary thing for every child.
I think kindergarten at four years is important, however.
You'll know what to do. You'll feel it.
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19-04-2014 21:48 #13
I wasn't working when DD2 started 3 yo kindy but I am a strong believer in that program for the year before they start 4 yo kindy. I had a younger child at home at the time. She hated it and never really settled. I wound up getting a job so couldn't pull her out even if I'd wanted to.
OP are you looking for another job? Would you stay home for the rest of the year and put her in next year or are you hoping something else comes along? I'd be reluctant to give up a spot in case a new job came along. But I also personally am not sure that 4 hours a week would be enough to actually benefit her in the sense of creating a structure and routine, so if that's all that was on offer and I wasn't working nor planning to work I would take her out.
But that's just what I would do. For me and my kids I don't put them into care before they are 3 unless I am working. I manage to meet their social and other needs in other ways. I have immense guilt about using childcare when I'm not working. I've never been able to make peace with taking time for myself away from the kids though. Not while they're so young.
ETA my post is not a judgment or criticism of what anyone else might do with their kids. I had a really rough first year after DS was born because of many things and in hindsight often wonder if it would have been easier for everyone if DD2 had been in childcare even one day a week. But she had anxiety issues and I felt I couldn't do it.
Sorry OP not meaning to derail your thread. It's so hard to know what the right thing to do is.
Last edited by Sonja; 19-04-2014 at 21:56.
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20-04-2014 07:03 #14
Thanks everyone for sharing your thoughts.
In regards to the guilt factor, it's not really playing a huge role in my decision, it's not that I'm feeling mummy guilt as such, it's more a case of "am I doing the right thing for DD" by sending her there for a day each week.. Is it worth it, will she actually benefit, will she be happy, should I wait etc...
I wouldn't have considered it had she not already started making the transition over the last couple of weeks; we were happily cruising along, I was only working 3 days per week, 2 of those being weekdays and DH's job allowed him to have his RDO's on those days so outside care was never required. Until just recently everything changed with his job which saw him having to work 5 straight weekdays and leaving me having to seek out childcare. It's one of the leading centres and I managed to nab the very last spot for her age group on the days I needed, so that's another thing, if I do end up finding work again, she's set.
Providing her with with activities on my own is a pleasure and something I relish in doing, we attend story/music groups at the library twice a week and have done so since she was 6 months old, I take her swimming, we go out exploring/walking visiting different parks and playcentres regularly, (we shop ) and I'd just started her in a playgroup.
But I know she can learn things at her daycare that come directly from interactions with the staff and other kids. On her second day there the staff said she really blossomed, she made a friend and had a great time outside, loves the sandpit and the reading corner, learnt a new game (hide and seek) and even came home happily repeating "wobble wobble", lol, which I guess she learnt from there, she's never said it before.
Another factor for me is that DD is extremely clingy with me at home and in.some social situations, to the point where she won't let anyone else hold her (not even DH anymore ) and I cannot leave the room without her crying after me, I walk around the house with her holding onto my leg most of the time. So seeing her develop an understanding at daycare that mum leaves sometimes but always comes back, is another factor for me. She is an intelligent little girl and can vocalise very well for her age, the centre director was surprised to hear her say "Mumma back in a minute, Mumma come back soon?" when I left.
So there's that, she's learning that it's not the end of the world and *I* am not the entire world, she can have fun and enjoy herself and others without me occasionally.
Plus, I think at her age a day there will be beneficial for her, I don't necessarily think that because it's only for half a day once a week it's not enough for her to reap the rewards, I think that time frame for a baby or toddler would feel like a lifetime in their little minds.
But... and this is where I'm stuck...I'll miss her when she's there. I can utilise the centre for 12 hours a day of I want, I'm saying 4-5 at this point because it's what I'm comfortable with at this early stage, I can gradually increase it if need be.
And, selfishly, I just want her with me 24\7 I love hanging out with her and have never had time apart from her since she was born, apart from going to work part time and the odd night out with DH. I've never felt the need for it. But now that we've both had a taste of daycare, I'm starting to think I could certainly do with a day to myself, even if it's just to grocery shop, clean the house, run errands etc.. but then again, I do enjoy doing those things with her (besides cleaning the house, that's tricky of course).
As for finding work, I'd like to get back to working 2 weekdays, but a job like that is hard to come by- my old job was ideal.
At this stage, she does need to attend another day as I have one more shift to complete as I had to give notice, but after that I need to make my decision. I honestly keep changing my mind, at one point I'm certain I'm going to pull her out and then I think of everything she's missing out on and the fun she could be having there once a week, learning procedures/interactions/structure, that whole "classroom" type environment teaching her from different aspects etc... still unsure here.
(thanks for reading if you got this far!)
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Last edited by ~Marigold~; 20-04-2014 at 08:04.
20-04-2014 07:51 #15
In other words, I think it's good to keep her stimulated in new and exciting environments, expose her to a whole new world of learning and play.
But on the other hand, I want my baby with me, plain and simple.
Can't make my mind up :/
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Last edited by ~Marigold~; 20-04-2014 at 08:08.
20-04-2014 08:04 #16
I'm in a similar situation because I was made redundant a bit over a week ago. I was working full time though so DD is in full time. I will be looking for another job after the school holidays have finished so I have to keep her in to keep my spot while I look for a job.
In your situation I'd probably still send her, I think daycare is good for the social interaction and you could get errands done while she's there.
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20-04-2014 08:04 #17
At the end of the day, I think your gut will tell you what's right for you. From the outsider pop psychology perspective (and I'm sure you know me well enough to take this the way it's intended): it seems like the tension is between your perception of your DD's needs (make her world bigger, social interaction, new skills etc) and your own needs/wants to be around your daughter all the time. Both your needs are important, don't get me wrong, just that's the way it reads.
For me, I have a need to have a day all to myself, where I can do the things that are difficult to do with a toddler around, and I am also an introvert and need recharge time after my working week. So when I booked DS in for an extra day, it was to fulfil my own needs. As you say, four/five hours a week is not a lot, but it may give you a chance to tap in to some of your needs beyond spending time with your DD. I think she is so lucky to have a mummy with your attitude, who just wants to spend 24/7 with her (I am NOT like that in the slightest!), but are there things that you would like to do or used to do just for yourself that you could enjoy doing in that short time?
20-04-2014 09:51 #18
2 is a great age for childcare and not too young. Stick with it.
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20-04-2014 14:26 #19
Can you just play it by ear? Keep it going for another month or so and see if you need it and if she likes it? It does give you that little break to go grocery shopping, do a bit of cleaning at home, go to the Doctor, etc, etc. If you don't have family who can give you that option during the week and you can afford to keep a day a week going then try it. But, obviously if separation anxiety or illness become major issues then it defeats the purpose and stop it.
As for building up immunity, some children never do ... well, my 7yo ds hasn't anyway. He had 2 day a week childcare at 3, then kinder for 2 years, then this is his 2nd year of school and I'm dreading the coming term as he's been sick nearly all of Term 2 for the last few years and he was sick for the last week of last term (he was sick with a cold for 2 long weeks).
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