It’s nothing personal, but it kind of feels that way
by Karla ° Friday, February 1, 2008
While searching for a daycare provider here in Ajax, it quickly became apparent that the one day a week schedule was not something most providers were interested in, mostly because it fills a potential full time spot. I can totally understand this from a financial perspective.

Of the few that were open to one day a week, I decided to meet with the two providers that made the best first impression over the phone.

After meeting them, I ended up choosing a provider that came highly recommended from a personal friend of mine whose opinion I value and trust. She sent her own child there, and had nothing but glowing feedback.

This is where I’m trying to take a step back to see the forest through the trees, so to speak, because just like my friend, I instantly felt comfortable with this woman. Her home was bright and cheerful, the air was filled with the smell of freshly baked muffins and her eyes shimmered with warmth and compassion. She has over a decade of experience, and when she swooped down to pick Nate up in her arms, he uttered nary a peep, nor a whimper, and he seemed perfectly content in her presence and the surroundings. Another bonus was that she only cares for pre-school kids, so all of the other children were very similar in age to Nate.

I left her home feeling confident that she was the perfect caregiver for Nate’s weekly day out to spend in the company of other children.

Fast forward to last Friday. When I woke Nate up in the morning, I excitedly explained to him that he was going to spend the day playing with other kids, and while I packed his lunch and milk, I kept reminding him how much fun he was going to have.

Before walking out the door, I made sure to grab his blankie, an item of comfort and security, because I can only imagine how scary the first time being away from home for an extended period of time must be to a child.

Although the daycare provider said she generally recommends a quick drop off, because it was his first day, she encouraged me to linger around for a bit. When it was time to go, Nate started crying, and as much as it hurt to leave him while he was upset, there wasn’t much else that I could do besides say goodbye, turn around and leave.

Shortly after 1:00 pm, I called to see how Nate was doing, and that’s when she informed that he was experiencing some separation anxiety. Actually, she called it extreme separation anxiety and said that he didn’t want anything to do with the other kids and just sort of wanted to sit off on his own, thumb planted firmly in his mouth, blankie securely anchored next to him, and observe. This surprised me and it didn’t surprise me all at the same time because if I had to describe Nate, I would probably peg him as a thoughtful observer. I’m not sure how an outsider would describe it, but he has never been one to barrel head first into new situations. For example, when it comes to other kids, he likes to watch and observe from a safe distance for a few moments before cautiously approaching new playmates. This cautious observation is always accompanied by several over the shoulder glances in my direction, which I have understood as his way of seeking security and encouragement. And here he was, the first time ever without me there to encourage him, and my poor child was uneasy and scared.

I asked if I should just go and pick him up, but she said he was having a nap and that maybe after a good rest he would be more relaxed, and encouraged me to let him continue with his day.

In hindsight, I should have just drove and picked him up right then and there, but I waited until 4:45 pm, and that’s when I learned the rest of the story.

This is where it gets hard to not sound a bit defensive, because although I recognize that her years of experience far outweight the one year that I have had the privilege to parent a child, and although I am a firm believer in feedback, both positive and negative, what followed next felt like nothing but a whole slew of negative feedback about my child, and I can't imagine that would be easy for any parent to hear.

So in light of sounding defensive, let me just present the facts, void of my own biases and opinions. My hope is that maybe you will see something I'm missing, because I really liked this woman, and I’m having a hard time seeing past all the negativity.

Basically, Nate didn’t stop crying, which she said was, “disruptive to her business,” because his crying upset the other kids, and although she said he seemed fine once he was being held, it just wasn’t feasible for her to hold him all day. For the record, at home, it is rare that he clears time from his play schedule for cuddling.

Also noted was some screaming. She said she couldn’t quite put her finger on what it meant. At home Nate is not a screamer, so I couldn’t quite put my finger on what he would have been trying to communicate either.

She also indicated that she thought he was developmentally behind with the social skills of a ten month old. In her words, “this is the problem with a one year maternity leave,” and “parents should start easing kids into daycare by three months.”

She reminded me that by Nate’s age (13 months), most kids are walking. She also made several references to the fact that he drank from his sippy cup the wrong way, that he was a very slow eater, and that he had a strong attachment to his blankie.

Although she didn’t exactly say to not come back, she did say that she didn’t think he was ready for daycare, and that if we continued, it would be an extremely long and difficult process due to his extreme separation anxiety. I inquired about easing him into daycare more slowly, and say, trying half days to start, but she wasn’t interested in doing that and suggested instead that if Nate was able to walk, he may have easier time interacting with the other kids. She said to think about what she said over the weekend and to get back in touch with her, but then as we were leaving, said “actually yeah, I think it’s better if you waited a while to bring him back.”

Which I totally gathered was her polite way of saying she wasn’t interested in caring for Nate anymore.

I’m not saying my child is all sunshine and roses, because we most certainly have a pail full of diapers to prove otherwise, but the fact that Nate has separation anxiety, even extreme seperation anxiety, sounds pretty normal to me.

I don’t know, I’m trying to be objective, but what do you think? Could she have been trying to tell me something about my child that she feels would have been overstepping her bounds so she was trying to deliver subtle clues and hints about his behaviour that could be a red flag for something else? Developmental issues? Behavioral issues? Something we should be working on? Improving? Or is she just not interested in dealing with Nate? Or?

On a lighter note - here is the little mischief maker himself, in the flesh, being a walky walker (sort of) and a squealy squealor of delight.

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Okay, reading htat pisses me off on your behalf.

First, every kid is different. How dare she insinuate that he's developmentally behind! And to imply that you did something wrong by staying home with your son! I'd be pissed.

Maybe those kids she cares for were forced to grow up too fast because they weren't home with their parents. I don't have anything against working parents, at all, but you certainly don't put your child at a disadvantage by being a SAHM.

No way would I take Nate back there. Sounds like she's negative and judgemental, and Nate deserves a babysitter who thinks he's just fantastic and perfect just the way he is!

Okay, stepping off my soapbox, now~ :)
Posted by Anonymous Kelly :  February 01, 2008

I totally agree with Kelly. She was wrong to say what she did, and to give a kid only one day to adjust to a new place is just not fair to anyone.

All three of my kids have developed differently. Two of them didn't walk until about 15 months - but hey - they both seem to be able to stay on their feet just fine now (and are great on the soccer field), so what does it matter when they started walking? And the one that was the slowest to walk is an absolute whiz kid at school (the same one who beat me at Speed Scrabble), so there's certainly nothing developmentally delayed about her.

I'm not sure how she manages to run a business if she's that judgemental of every kid.
Posted by Blogger Heather :  February 01, 2008

Good God, I think that woman was totally out of line. I don't know you, or Nate, but if your blog is any indication, he seems perfectly charming, and you seem exceedingly intelligent. I think you would have noticed if there was some REAL problem with your baby. Neither of my children walked until just after they turned 13 months; he will be well within the range of normal even if he doesn't walk for several more months. And the separation anxiety was to be expected. He would have gotten over that eventually, although I agree that a few half days might have been a better way to start. Why the heck didn't she tell you he was crying and screaming when you called at 1:00? I'm sorry you had to deal with that. I know from experience that even if deep down you know your child is wonderful, it's a bit gut wrenching to have someone tell you they think otherwise. Vicki
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

WHAT A BITCH! Seriously, that lady sounds like a total bitch. Nate is fine. FINE. Porgie didn't start walking until she was 13 months old, she is still a slow eater, and sometimes she forgets to hold her sippy cup the right way. And my baby is 19 months old.

I think this was really a good thing. I am glad she kicked Nate out, because I don't want someone like her watching him.
Posted by Blogger Christy :  February 01, 2008

What makes her think she knows your child after 1 WHOLE day?

Frankly, I would never take my kid back there. Being in a new place is scary, so of course he was upset. And separation anxiety? And? Of course! I can not believe she would try to make you feel like an incompetent parent and that you don't know anything about your own child. I don't care how much experience she has, that is rude, unnecessary and GAH!

I think I might be a little pissed for you.
Posted by Blogger Sabrina :  February 01, 2008

My son had the same experience at a daycare (it was a big intitutional one and he was 18 months at the time). I took him for 8 half-days and he was cring when I dropped him off and crying when I picked him up. He is an observer-type as well BTW. So I pulled him out of that one and put him in a different one. Though the transition to that was not easy because of his previous bad daycare experience, it was obvious from the start that he liked this place better! When you find the right place, I think you'll know it is right :)
Posted by Blogger Aphra :  February 01, 2008

i am so angry right now i can hardly type.
nate is fine.just.fine.
she clearly sux.
and OMG so frekken unprofetional (sp)
not walking at 13 is fine.just.fine.
it can take a good long while to get used to a day care setting.
what works for some children, is a mothers helper. some nice teenager or uni student who would like a one day a week job.

karla, i am so sorry you had to go through this. shame shame on her.
Posted by Anonymous uumomma :  February 01, 2008

Just wanted to add some words of support.

My daughter took her first steps around 13 months but wasn't interested in walking until around 15 months. It was like she figured she wouldn't bother with walking because she could get around way faster crawling.

They say kids are supposed to be making their own 2 to 3 word sentences by age two. One of my smartest friends, and engineer who runs a succesful business, didn't talk until age 3.

So "developmentally behind"? I say humbug.

Finding the right child-care provider can be difficult, but keep looking! It's important that you get some time to yourself, too.

Because of this experience, I'm sure you'll do a slower transition with Nate the next time, and that may be all he needs. I'd suggest one or two visits where you stay the WHOLE time before going on to half-days. It'll make you feel better about leaving, too.

Good luck, Karla!
Posted by Anonymous fawn :  February 01, 2008

I hate that people think that all kids should fit in a mold.

With my oldest, his doctor (my husband was in the Army at the time, so I didn't have a choice in his doctor) told me he was slow. He was 9 months old and wasn't crawling and didn't have teeth. I guess he took what she said to heart, because in two weeks time he went from nothing to walking with two teeth.

My youngest didn't walk until he was a little over 13 months. So what---he will be 2 at the end of the month and you certainly can't tell he has been walking for less than a year!!

Perhaps she has had years of experience, but has she dealt with babies who are always with momma or daddy?? I can tell you that my youngest would have acted the same way at Nate's age. Even now, he looks at me for reassurance before venturing into new things.

By the looks of the video, he looks like a healthy, happy one year old!!
Posted by Blogger Candi :  February 01, 2008

Woah! That is really crazy. This is the first time he has been away from his mommy for so long. All kids have a hard time adjusting.

You being a mom who wants to be with her kid and has the finances to do so should not be looked down upon. My kids never were in daycare (not that it is bad) My daughter is the most social child I know, so being at home with me did not hinder her.

And what on earth does slow eating have to do with anything? How silly.

Do try again. Not all places are this weird.

Also my friends kid didn't walk until like 15 months, not a big deal. being and observer is not a big deal either. Kids don't really play with other kids until like 2-3, they play alongside each other.

Sorry you had to deal with this=(

One thing I always repeat to myself id ALL kids are DIFFERENT.
Posted by Blogger Donna :  February 01, 2008

Wow..first my apologies to you for assuming he bit someone..
Second..who made her an expert??? All kids are different..and it was his first day ever at a daycare!
I would definitely not take him back there but I would explore my options..maybe bring a retired grandma to your home a day a week? I dunno..I'm one of those terrible moms who put all of my kids in daycare before they were a year old and they're perfectly adjusted..I WISH I could have stayed home with them..
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

Oh, Nate is fine. (My kid walked full time at 14 months, for one thing--totally normal). This lady isn't. I do think perhaps if/when you try another care provider, you might consider spending more time with him there (we did several visits where we just went and played for a while and then left together), and then only leaving him there an hour, then two hours, that kind of thing. That really helped my kid adjust to her small in-home daycare, and I never just drop her off. I always go and play for a while. It works for us--I know a lot of people say just to drop them off, but my kid does much better easing into the new place with mommy there to show it's fun.
Posted by Blogger Eva :  February 01, 2008


Wow! Well, I'm going to step out on a limb here and try to see where this woman is coming from. Oh wait, she's not coming from anywhere, but bitchville!

My son was 11 months old, and in a car accident, in which he broke his leg, arm, among other injury's. Now, his cast kept him up for about 4 months, so by the time he was 15 months old, he was not able to walk. When I approached my pediatrician about how long of a delay my son would experiance due to the accident, he calmly said, "Ma'am, most children do not completely master "walking" until around 16 months of age. Most children start around 11 or 12 months, but even then, it isn't mastered walking, it's first steps before a tumble, and so on".

This woman clearly likes her "work cut out for her" so to speak. If it looks like work on her part, she is not interested.

I mean, sure, what child care provider wouldn't want the children brought over fully trained, and perfect? But sorry lady, that is not how it works.

When you read child care advertisements, do they read, "Child care in my home. Your child must potty, must correctly drink from a sippy cup, must jump right in and adjust, and must be able to build Noah's Ark". They SURE DON'T!

Keep your chin up. She may be a lovely lady, just not right for having to lift to much of a finger to get a new child adjusted.

Lastly, if all else fails, just pour a little sugar in her gas tank, and tell her you think she's "sweet" but you will take her advice and take Nate somewhere else. :D
Posted by Blogger Mindy :  February 01, 2008

My husband didn't walk until he was 18 months and is an ace squash player and has a phD from Oxford... obviously, he's a bit slow.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

I can't believe she would be so judgemental and negative toward Nate on his first day away from his Mom. My son is almost 13 months old and if anybody said those things to me I would become very defensive. Jaxson is also VERY attached to his blankie, which will definitely be going to daycare with him when he starts in 2 months.
Love the video, what a cutie!!!
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

This lady is just not the right caregiver for Nate. I had a very similar experience with my daughter when she was 13 months old. At that time the woman "politely" said that my daughter had been home too much with me and that she could tell my daughter would have difficulty making friends and that my staying home with her was only a disadvantage because she would have such a difficult time later in life. And all this after a few hours with her! Boy was she wrong! Now my daughter is 8 and she is the brightest, most well liked, well adjusted kid most people have met. Perhaps Nate just has a keen sense of character in others, and he's bright and extremely aware of the new situation and what it entails. Try again with someone else and know that your decision to stay home with him this past year was a wonderful gift. She may be more experienced with other kids, but no one knows Nate better than you.

Her problem is that Nate didn't fit the mold of a daycare kid. He is a thriving little boy who has had the privilage of his mother home with him everyday since his birth. Of course he was going to scream and cry and be a bit "off" on his first day away from you. Perhaps it would be a good idea to get a sitter in your own house once a week, sometimes daycare isn't for certain kids. My mom stayed with me and I'm assuming I would have reacted the same way to being dropped off somewhere new and scary.

Screw her, I've been reading your blog for a while now and your son is a beautiful, and most importantly, happy little boy. You are doing GREAT!!
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

hi karla - i'm a long time lurker of your blog, and am emerging to say: if possible, don't worry about it. it's much harder to do when you really liked this person and felt connected to her; and truly, she can still be a nice person - she is just very wrong about your child (and i wouldn't call any of her messages 'subtle!')

i would agree with another of your commenters, as i would imagine that she would prefer a child that 'blends in' with her other children. easier for her. but it would be nice if she was honest about that (with herself at least) instead of making a mama feel crappy about her kid. she should know, given her 'years of experience,' that she has a lot of clout with the parents of her kids. and if she is a parent herself she might want to think about how she delivers her thoughts and opinions about another woman's child.

another thing about kids nate's age...hello, they rarely play 'together.' they do what's called 'parallel play' in that they are playing in the same proximity, maybe (maybe!) with the same toys...but i have seen VERY FEW kids at that age actually involve other children in their play. so your son wanted to watch. NORMAL. if he jumped right in, also normal. there is a range of normal for kids - if he was banging his head on the floor, juggling knives, or smearing poop, i may be slightly concerned. but sitting back and watching while holding his blankie, in a brand new situation? come on, daycare lady...there's nothing wrong with that. (as for the eating slow...give me a break. we could all benefit from a bit more slow eating in my opinion!!)

~ kd (who didn't walk until almost 16 months, had a 'strong attachment' to her blankie until she was 7, had a SAHM until she was 8, and by all accounts, has surpassed what is 'normal' in many avenues in her life...)
Posted by Anonymous kd :  February 01, 2008

Nate is a perfectly normal little boy. It's scary for a child, who has been with his mother since birth, to suddenly be put in a different environment with a stranger. If he didn't cry I would be worried.
If you are going to try again (with someone else) I suggest easing him in more. Maybe spend a couple hours there and then take him home. The next time just leave for a half hour or so. Continue to stay away longer and longer.
Good luck...and one knows your child better than you.
Posted by Anonymous Val :  February 01, 2008

Nate= Normal
As others have said all kids develop differently. I would question HER taking Nate right off the bat with no transition period.
She should of had you come in with him for a few hours a day, for a couple of days before you dropped him off. So that he could see it was ok there, because you would of been there. Plus, you would of seen how she interacted with the other children.
As for the sippy cup? Umm, my daughter holds it in all different contortions and angles. Her daycare teachers think she is "creative" and laugh that she does it. Every child will have their own ways. If he's getting liquid who the hell cares HOW he is holding the freaking cup?
And, would it of killed her to hold Nate to help him? My daughter is a seasoned daycare kid (which makes me sad, but I also see how much she loves it so I'm torn) and there are days where she needs to be held more than others.

I wouldn't take him back there.

You will find the right place.

Nate will walk when he is ready. Period.

Posted by Blogger Heather :  February 01, 2008

That is just so crazy! She had him for ONE day. She doesn't know anything about him. I've read that 13 months is the average time to start walking, so there is no way he is behind there. I know lots of children who started walking later.

If he was that upset all day she should have called you. It is inexcusible that she didn't. If you try another day care, easing him in would probably be better. Sounds like she doesn't like kids that come from the comfort of home b/c they are less independent at first. Of course they are! They are used to having their mamas there, meeting their every need.
Posted by Anonymous Carrie :  February 01, 2008

Amazing, the exact thing happened to me 14 years ago and I am STILL upset about it. I stayed home until Katie was 13 months and then I found a home daycare I thought would be great. I thought large commercial should would be neglected, etc.

Day 1, lots of crying and she just seemed unahppy. Day 2 I couldn't take it and just drove over there at 2 in the afternoon. No one answered the door so I went in and there she was, in walker, alone, in the living room, having cried so hard and so long she had no tears or voice left.

This woman had the AUDACITY to tell me that she was spoiled by being home with me and needed to adjust. I promptly called my husband and informed him I would be quitting my job. He called in several favors to jump the waiting list at the big commercial daycare and convinced me to try it for one day.

Not only were they an absolute dream to her, they called me at least four times to easy my mind. The irony was astonishing.

She is almost 15, and if there is one thing I have learned, a mother's instincts are dead on. Don't take him back.
Posted by Anonymous Gidget :  February 01, 2008

I like to see both points of view. I was trying to read this to see how she might have a point here and you might have a point there. It was impossible for me. I feel silly for getting so emotional about your situation, but I had tears of anger in my eyes as I read this. I think Nate's reaction was perfectly normal. I think 12 months is average for walking, so that means loads of kids aren't doing it at 13months. Alison wasn't. Holding a sippy cup wrong? So what? Needing to be held and missing the woman who has been the center of his entire life? That's normal for a well attached baby.
Posted by Blogger Julia :  February 01, 2008

I am delurking (finally) because this is bugging me.
Not all kids will go willingly to strangers, especially in a strange home with other kids. To expect him not to cry/scream is a bit ridiculous. That is how he communicates.
Not all kids walk at the same time. My oldest was 15 months old.
I am surprised that she, a "professional" in the business for 10 years, would be so quick to dismiss your boy. I think you are right that maybe half days would be easy to transition him in. When my oldest started daycare at a year, we did a couple of half days first, so he could get comfortable with everything and the staff at the daycare could get to know him. It literally took a couple of months of going 5 days a week until he was happy there (napping, playing with others and going willingly in the morning).
Perhaps you could leave him with a sitter at your house for a few half days first? Or, maybe a bigger daycare would be best suited for this? Sounds like this woman is an amateur.
Whatever you decide, you know your kid best. Good luck!
Posted by Blogger MG :  February 01, 2008

I am so proud of Nate!!!!!!! That lil guy is perceptive! He could tell that lady was a fruitcake crumbling around the edges! He refused to interact with her "I would rather not bother being a nurturing, caring, educated care giver thank you very much" attitude, and he decided to get himself removed from that situation as quickly as possible. To have such expectations on the first day was insane of her. She found every lame excuse she could think up in a few hours, to save herself the hassle of participating in a childs needs. She is a care giver, she should be educated in the normal ranges of development, clearly she is not. As far as his sippy cup, if he's getting a drink, it's not exactly being held wrong is it? Works for him! I am very angry on your behalf and it reinforces why I am just now going back to work at 38 years old, after staying home for 17 years to raise 3 children. Nobody could love them like I could. Please, find someone else to give you the time away you need.

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Karla, I am sitting here ANGRY as can be. HOW DARE SHE. Nate is a BABY for crying out loud. Did this woman walk around with a black pointed hat and store a variety of broomsticks??? I just cannot believe her nerve.

In all photos, videos and posts I have seen and read of Nate, you show him to be nothing more than a totally adored and cherished little man. You illustrate just what wonderful parents you guys are. Please, not for a single moment, will you let this woman plant any seed of doubt about that in your mind.

You should have started child care at three months???? What? My daughter is 5 now and her first experience away from me was at nursery school when she was almost 3. Does that make me a bad mother? I don't think so.... Kara screamed (at 2 years old, not 1!!!) for a full term when I dropped her off. The carers were wonderful. They simply stated that some children find such transitions more difficult than others. That some children just like being at home ~ I see that as a positive in many ways. It took 3 months to be able to leave her there for 3 hours ~ she was slow to adjust.

I simply cannot believe this woman. I'm glad this happened because could you imagine seeing her true colours a year down the track? I'd much rather Nate be nowhere near her LOL.

Love to you ~ sooooo angry for you. Your boy is perfect. Your boy is 'normal' for the want of a better word. Your boy is, as you know, one of the most LOVED little creatures I have 'met'.

I wholly agree with Val, out of all these comments. Most reasonable child care providers wouldn't dream of having a toddler left an entire day for his first day. It's too bad that she didn't give you the option to wean him onto the daycare. That's what you might insist upon next time, even if you have to pay for a full day, it most surely will work out better.
And walking? My first walked at 10 months and #2? Well, she waited until well past her 15th month before making the effort. At which point she was a professional walker. It's hard not to worry though.
Posted by Blogger Mama T :  February 01, 2008

Sorry Karla ~ I deleted my comment because of a mistake which made what I was saying sound BAD LOL!!!


My babe is 3 weeks younger than Nate and about the same place developmentally. My daycare provider has 17 years experience, all preschool kids, a similar situation. She has had no problems with him. Even though he cries like crazy when I leave him (stops the minute I leave) and insisted on being near her all day, every day for the first week. Then he got over it and now he cries when he leaves her.

I think that your sitter is sort of strange...
Posted by Blogger delphi :  February 01, 2008

This is so sad. It undermines you as a parent (who has done absolutely nothing wrong!). It makes me wonder about the environment that those kids are in. How could she have so little understanding and compassion for a kiddo in a completely new situation? If Nate expressed his discomfort/displeasure, I don't blame. Why couldn't she understand that he needed time to adjust? Accept it as a blessing that you got kicked out. Find a new place with a nice low caregiver to child ratio and try to start fresh.

Do you have any "drop-in" daycare places near where you live. It might be beneficial to be able to drop him off a couple of times a week for only an hour. Maybe even less to start.

Keep up the good work. You are raising a happy and wonderful little boy.

Hi... i'm just a random reader and have never commented...

But my thought is that you might want to try something easier on your son.

He was
1.)out of his familiar environment 2.)away from mommy.

Can you imagine how scary that would be from his perspective? Especially for so many hours without understanding whether he would get back to mommy and his safe place or not?

What about paying a babysitter to watch him for just a few hours at a time in your home (instead of a whole day- kind of a shock for him). At home he would at least be in a place where he feels safe, and he'll learn (after MANY times) that yes, mommy WILL be right back.

Or take him to a daycare where you can stay with him the first several times until he really starts to like going there.

It's not the easy start to daycare you had probably planned on, but what if you see it from your child's perspective?

I work part time, weird schedules, and both of my kids have cried entire days without me. It is so, so difficult. Anyway, that's why I wanted to comment this time.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

I am tearing up for little Nate. Poor Guy! Don't beat yourself up over this. She is wrong. You are most definitely right, but you were positive enough to think that it may get better. I dropped River off at daycare full time starting at 13 months. It was the hardest thing ever. He would scream and rip my clothes off trying to come with me. I cried driving away. But the daycare lady, said he was fine after a few minutes. Every kid is so different. Hopefully you can find a good match. What about a babysitter? He may feel better in his own environment (even if you are still home.) I have started a new search in a new town. It's no fun.
Posted by Blogger Katie :  February 01, 2008

Wow. Seriously.

Who does this woman think she is? Really. What credentials does she have to be making a statement about his development?

Is she new? Does she not know that all children develop differently? Who is to say (besides doctors, and I sometimes wonder what they know) what age (in months, even!) a child should or shouldn't be walking?

Separation anxiety can be a treat. I mean, if I was with someone, every single day of my life (literally), and then, poof, gone, I would be a little bit teary too. It's got to be hard for a little person, you know? It's hard for mama's too, but it does get better. Nate's gonna cry when you leave him. For a while. If she can't take that, for a day, or even a week, then she's in the wrong business.

And as for the daycare at 3 months, meh, I say. They give us a year for a reason. It is to be with our babies. I'm not saying it's wrong, or a bad idea, to introduce a provider at 3 months, but I quite enjoyed that age, and I wasn't about to share it if I didn't have to.

Karla, you will find someone. Someone who will let Nate be Nate. And not judge him, or you. (At least not to your face!) We had an awful time finding daycare, and Kemper went to two, before we found the wonderful woman we've found now. You need to find someone who's looking at the big picture, they are helping raise your child, even be it for one day a week, this person should be someone Nate will grow to love.

Clearly, this lady doesn't seem like it.

If you moved to the P-dot, maybe Nate could get into Kemp's daycare. ;)
Posted by Anonymous Mandi :  February 01, 2008

You have every right to feel defensive and offended. I am offended for you. Children are difficult to take care of, but someone in her position should have learned by now to cut through all the difficulties and see the precious child put in her care. It sounds like she was not a good match. But there may be a good match out there. And I hope you find it.
Posted by Blogger Bunny :  February 01, 2008

His crying was "disrupting her business"? But her business is kids! In my more than 25 years of experience in the field of child development, I have seen some kids that would cry all day every day and we just helped them through it. I think your boy did pretty well, being able to comfort himself for a while with his thumb and blanket. There are no "problems" with a long maternity leave, only benefits to your baby. Nate has not been in the fast-paced craziness that is childcare, even good child care. He has his blanket when he wants it, as it should be at his age. And he eats in a leisurely way because HE CAN- there isn't a caregiver saying, "time to pack your lunch up" because there is a schedule to be kept. Child care is not "bad"- I ran a great program for many years. But it is very different than what your boy has experienced in his short life. Why wouldn't he need time to adjust? She is the wrong caregiver for Nate if she doesn't know this. Her job is to make you and your child feel comfortable and welcome, not to make you feel like your boy is a loser or to make you feel unsure about your kid's development. You are wise to walk away with Nate in your arms (since he can't walk!)

As someone who makes a living from providing child care and would be out of a job if everyone kept their kids out of child care- please, just keep him with you.

And my son, who was in child care from the age of 2 months, didn't walk until he was 14 1/2 months old and never has been comfortable interacting with new kids right away. Guess that blows her theory about starting kids in child care early!
Posted by Anonymous Jan :  February 01, 2008

Everyone has said exactly what I was going to say.

She seems like she doesn't want to "work" and just wants a kid that wil be self-sufficient. Too bad, lady, they aren't all like that!

Mine would have done exactly as yours. Mr. P is a complete observer to this day, always has been and I suspect always will be. But he has many friends and is very outgoing after he has assured himself that everything is ok. I take that as a sign of extreme intelligence, actually.

So, I would possibly second the nomination for someone in your house, a college student or something similar?

Someone at least, that may not seem children simply as the means to and end. Which I understand that making a living is important, but this woman seems to have no clue. Beee-yotch!

Oh, and Mr. P? Didn't talk until he was about two! But when he did? He spoke in complete sentences and like an adult. So that woman can stick her "developmental delay" crap up her arse!
Posted by Blogger Gina :  February 01, 2008

Karla -
A. I agree with you. There is a missing piece and it must be on her side. She is out of integrity with herself in some way if she can project a comfortable, nurturing presence and yet be so unable to bring the goods when a child really needs it. Her being out of integrity won't necessarily show up in your everyday interactions with her, but it became clear in the "crisis." Of course, a crying baby on his first day of care should not be a crisis to a professional, but if it is you are well away from her - imagine if there were any real problems - how would she react in a true crisis?
B. There are no red flags for Nate. The younger the child - and he's really young! - the wider the range of normal behavior. Her pool is skewed because certain types of kids thrive in her environment - nothing wrong with those kids, nothing wrong with yours. It's just that the range of normal is much wider than who walks through the doors of a single home daycare provider.
C. It's possible you didn't react in anger because your are kind - and also because she set it up that way - she created a scenario in which you would feel insecure about your child and therefore take blame upon yourself, instead of pushing back and having her take responsibility for her inability to calm a fussy baby (which ought to be a norm for day care providers, no?)

All that being said, you and Nate still deserve and should find a way to have time apart. 13 months is the peak age of separation anxiety in my opinion. You could find someone amazing two or three weeks from now and all the separation stuff could be totally over, so don't give up on what you want and need.
Posted by Blogger Karen :  February 01, 2008

You and your doctor are the best judge of whether your child is meeting his milestones and developing appropriately.

The Canadian government extended parental leave from 6 months to one year in 2001 because studies proved that was best for children's development.

Seems to me that Nate didn't have extreme separation anxiety so much as he had good judgment. It doesn't sound like the woman was willing to make the effort to help Nate adjust to a really, really new situation. It is best that you learned that on the first/ last day.
Posted by Anonymous Ms.Carson :  February 01, 2008

You poor thing having to hear that.

My daughter did not walk until 14 months. My chiropractor said that is sign of intelligence because it takes more skill to crawl fast and it requires more complex muscle control, so she can bite it with that statement. Just something to think about.

Secondly, he may not be ready for that daycare, my daughter would have been the same. Just trying to get her to stay an hour with the ladies at my health club daycare took two weeks. After the first she stopped crying and by the second she was simply observing and that lasted for a month.

He is definitely not ready for a daycare where the woman is used to only "daycare babies". She obviously does not have experience with children who have been with loving SAHM for a long period of time. That is her fault, not yours.

And he might do fine with another person. He is smart enough and old enough to know who he likes and dislikes. He has "gut feelings" too.

Don't beat yourself up.

Okay, first off I need to mention that I JUST NOW found your blog, so pardon my interrupting here, but I think I may have a few things to say that may help?

1. That women should NOT be that rude. Period.
2. She should have NEVER said those things to you about his development - hello? This was her first extended period of time with him and poor Nate was stressed. He has plenty of time to learn to walk; he is not developmentally behind.
2. I have had my two kiddos in at the same in home day care from when they were 3 months old, and I have seen a few other kids transition in and out of care. The one thing I have noticed (and I am not saying this is good or bad), is that the 10-18 months old have the hardest time transitioning into care, esp. if they have been home with mom or dad or grandma or one on one with someone. Separation anxiety is BIG in this age group. It will most likely be harder to transition into care around this age, esp. since it's one day a week.

It seems when, as parents, we're ready to step back out there into work or whatever, the kiddos are ready to pull us back!

I hope this works out for you and your family and that you can find the options that you need.
Posted by Blogger BethanyWD :  February 01, 2008

My child didn't crawl until 15 months and did not walk until closer to 19 months. He didn't say mama until 18 months and now he is a smart, athletic 4 year old who can hit a t-ball 20 feet, read and spell complicated works. Your child is better off without that woman and maybe your friend should reconsider as well. I do vote for a haircut though. We don't want Nate to add identity issued to her list of wrongs.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 01, 2008

I'm sure I'm agreeing with many of the others, but I HATE how Mom's always compare there kids developmental milestones. Boston didn't walk until he was 15 months, and he's fine. I don't think he is or ever was "slow" in anyway, so I totally think Nate is fine.

Also, what an idiot of a sitter. I think it is perfectly normal for a child his age to have even extreme separation anxiety and I actually think it's more rare when they don't. Boston will hardly let me leave his side when we are home and it's just the two of us let alone when going to a sitter. He has learned to adjust to going to the babysitter for an hour in the mornings and even tells my husband "Bye" when he drops him off, but we never get a sitter to go out at nights unless he is already asleep. So the sitter never even sees him. I know he would cry and scream and cry because he's nervous and you can't really explain to them at that age what you are doing. I keep telling myself just enjoy the fact that he loves you so much because he'll probably want nothing to do with you when he is a teenager. As for the babysitter if she couldn't deal with him adjusting for one day then she's not much of a sitter and she should have just told you to come get him earlier instead of complaining at the end. Her loss. As for you being able to have some "me time" maybe you can find someone who will watch him for just a couple hours here and there, a friend maybe, or you may just have to wait until he's a bit older and you can really explain it to him.

Ok I dont have kids as you know but you do know that I care for them and have for years.

I am offended for you on what that women said. I would not want my child in her home, she seemed very negative.

I am sorry but not walking at 13 months is not abnormal. Every single baby is different and I don't get her issue with him being home in the care of his mother for a year. I mean if you can do it why would you not.
Posted by Blogger TBG :  February 01, 2008

so when brandon was about 9 months old i took him to the gym day care. It wasn't even 20 minutes before the day care girl came walking up to me on the eliptical holding my screaming child and I had to leave. Uggg. To this day I am petrified to take him to day care because I know he will freak out. Not only when I leave but even more when he wakes up and I'm not there or when they make him eat and he isn't hungry. Ugggg. He is over 2 and I still won't do it.

Honestly I think my separation anxiety will be just as bad as his.

I don't know you personally, just what I've read from your blog, but I felt defensive just reading this blog. I don't have children, but I'm well schooled in child behavior and development. His behavior was TOTALLY normal for a child his age and I think she was harsh in her words. Also I didn't walk until 13 months and I don't feel he's delayed at all, all kids develop at different rates. I'm sorry you had to experience this. From the videos you've posted, he seems like a totally normal happy healthy little boy. I think her contempt stems from not being able to comfort him, maybe she felt threatened by that because she sees herself as the perfect child care provider.

My son attends a daycare run by a woman who I really love and after reading this post, I feel very lucky. I have watched kids come through there after being at home for their first year and they always deal with separation anxiety-that's totally normal! The sign of a really great daycare provider (which I humbly think mine is) is that they have the patience to help the child through that difficult time. I've watched many a child come through there and go from crying all day to loving daycare in just a few days or a week.

How can she just write him off because he had a tough first day? That seems ridiculous.
Posted by Anonymous Shalini :  February 02, 2008

I haven't even read the other comments, but I wouldn't take him back there. Her comments were disturbing she a doctor? Our daughter walked late and had other issues, but her care provider was always patient. At her current amazing preschool, she eats very slow and guess what? It's no big deal. I mean, they encourage her but honor who she is. I'm sorry you had to go through this. You are doing a great job, and you will find the right spot for him! (As a side note, when he's older, you may want to consider Montessori. We love the balance of love, fun, structure and learning.) All the best.
Posted by Blogger Sara :  February 02, 2008

I'm not a mom but I was a professional nanny for 10 years (+I'm oldest of 7 :) and have lots of experience with kids so I thought I'd try to weigh in on the "other side."

1) I think you were perfectly justified an feeling insulted and upset, and I think she was 100% wrong; everything you've described in Nate sounds right on target for his age.

2) In trying to understand (not necessarily justify) where she was coming from, I'm going to guess that she's a person whose self worth rests partly on the fact that she IS warm and sweet and 'good with children.' It's not much of a defense but maybe she's used to children loving her and Nate's "rejection" of her made her feel inadequate. In this case I think it was probably easy for her to convince herself that there was something wrong with him, not her. I suspect, because you did have such a positive impression of her, that she honestly thought she was doing you a favor by warning you of his possible 'delays.'

However to suggest that you've spoiled him by staying home with him this long is completely ridiculous. Nate is fine; perfect and beautiful, and you are doing a great job. Find a place you both feel comfortable with (an in-home sitter might be a good idea. New place and new people all in one day is a lot of unfamiliarity to deal with. he was probably just overwhelmed.)
Posted by Blogger jess :  February 02, 2008

hey karla--

oh, this just broke my heart to read this. it's bad enough that we worry about these issues on our own with out someone else bringing them up too.

personally, i would never trust the judgment of a woman who spent a few hours with my child unless they were a child development specialist.

she was totally out of line, imo, to say some of the things she said to you. it sounds to me that she really just wants to have children that have been groomed to a daycare setting (she only takes pre-school aged kids) and is not willing to work with a child who is entering daycare for the first time.

she should have been more understanding and compassionate...with him AND you. instead, she persisted to tell you all the things she thought was "wrong" with you son...who the heck does that! seriously!

the fact that she was analyzing his development would be enough for me to say bye-bye. her job is not to analyze him, it is to care for him and make him feel comfortable and cared for.

i am so sorry you had to experience this. but don't give up. i am sure there is the perfect person out there that will care for him ALMOST as well as you ;) lol.

and, if it helps at all, aiden didn't walk until we was 15 months old, was the slowest eater EVER, (and actually did smear his poop, lol). and he is now a brilliant three year old who loves puzzles and games, has a mighty throw, counts in spanish, and knows he is loved.

best wishes!

I can't even believe I read that right. That was SO harsh of her! Holy!
I don't even know what to say I can't believe someone who doesn't even know you or Nate would say that to you after one day of being with him.
He looks super-de-duper to me! And SO cute too!
Posted by Blogger Kaili :  February 02, 2008

Let me get this straight. He was away from Mommy and/or Daddy for the first time, in a strange place and the woman got peeved because he wanted to observe? I would think that would make her job easier.

Also, as long as he can get from point A to point B, then who cares how he gets there? Why is it so difficult for her to let him move at his own speed?

After spending one year with you, he's got the social skills of a kid three months younger? Um, so what? At least he has social skills!

How do you drink from a sippy cup the 'wrong' way? As long as something comes out, I didn't know there was a right way?

My oldest daughter is almost three, and she's still a slow eater. Not that Nate knows this but, not rushing through food actually helps you eat less. It's healthier. Didn't your parents ever tell you to chew your food 39 times, or whatever it was?

I think the only thing she was trying to tell you was that she's incompetent when it comes to someone who doesn't fit into HER schedule. She obviously had no interest in finding a solution to any of the alleged 'problems' and it's just easier to blame the Mommy.

Which, going by this site, you are a fan-freaking-tastic Mommy and she? Is insane.

Good luck, and I promise I'm done. :)
Posted by Anonymous Daren :  February 02, 2008

Delurking to say that I cannot understand why she told you all this. None of the "problems" she described seem like problems, at all! My daughter (4 years old) walked at 13 months, her little friend at 10 months, and her other little friend at 16 months. Eating slow is a good thing, I have NEVER heard of it being a bad thing, or a thing at all! Etc...If these are all the "problems" Nate has, then he has no problems. SHE is the one who couldn't bond with him, she is the one with problems. I don't know Nate, but from what I read he is a smart little guy and he is telling you that he didn't like it there. No two kids are alike, that's why the world so interesting. YOU are wonderful.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 02, 2008

I'm driving into Toronto today to go to Lululemon. Should I spin round to egg her house?
Mad as you were, Nate being booted from daycare means he won't have to spend time with her. Now knowing what she is like its probably a good thing.Do you have friend you could trade babysitting with? You can have a day to yourself one day and Nate gets a playdate on another.
Posted by Anonymous Heather :  February 02, 2008

I've had 2 kids in a home-based daycare, so based on my experience, here is my two cents. Of course Nate (my son is Nate, too!) had separation anxiety on his first day. That is a normal developmental phase and has nothing to do with your mothering skills. I reflect back to how my daughter was at that age. She had been in day care since 3 months and was great in that environment, but when I put her in the church nursery while I went to mass, she flipped out and they had to page me to come get her. New situations are scary for ALL children at that age.

With regard to the daycare provider, I don't think she was willing to put in the time to get Nate adjusted, because he was only coming 1 day a week. I do understand that it is disruptive to the other kids when a child is crying non-stop, but I think she would have been willing to tolerate it and work with him if he was there full-time. But she went too far to insinuate his behavior was due to being developmentally delayed or having a stay at home mom. I think she did that so she could feel justified in rejecting your child.

Another reader suggested having a sitter come to your home. I agree that could be a good transition before putting him back in a day care setting. He would be more comfortable in his own environment, and still get the one-on-one time he needs right now. And there are always playgroups (you could host at your house) to expose him to social interaction with other kids.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 02, 2008

I agree with everyone else. Nate is completely normal. I work full-time as a teacher and my mom watches Evan (who is also 13 months) for me. It takes time for Evan to adjust to going back to staying with her even after a week or two home with me when I am off. And this is a boy that has been with her since he was 3 months!! This woman obvious wants "easy" children that do not require much of her time. I don't know about you, but I really don't know many children that require little attention... especially when transitioning to a new place. I would suggest asking some stay at home moms that you know if they would watch Nate (payed) for a morning a week for a few weeks...and then maybe all day. That way Nate would be with someone that he is familiar with and that person would also have more sensitivity towards him since they know and already care for him. Just an idea...
Posted by Blogger Beth :  February 02, 2008

Nate is NORMAL!!!!

Emily did not walk until she was 14 months old.

The rest of what she said is bunk.

Hugs to you!
Posted by Blogger Angella :  February 02, 2008

I've seen lots of new kids at my son's daycare take over a week to get adjusted. The staff just spend time giving that kid extra cuddles until they're ready to join in the fun. Maybe a larger daycare would be better - more staff means more flexibility when one kid needs a bit more attention (and I love that my son has that available to him on his down days).

Nate sounds perfectly normal, and the caregiver sounds not so great to me... hope you find someone else who's perfect for him soon!
Posted by Blogger Trish :  February 02, 2008

There is nothing wrong with Nate, he'll walk when he's ready.
If this woman doesn't realize what an awesome little man he is, then that's her loss.
Don't worry, you'll find the right person. Keep looking!
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 02, 2008

I don't think that it's Nate who isn't ready...I think it's HER who might have to entertain a child to make him comfortable in the beginning. HELLO, isn't this her JOB?!

BTW, he is simply adorable in the video :)

Hi there,

Not that you need another comment with the same opinion, but I had to jump in.

My mom has been doing in-home daycare for over 25 years, so I asked her opinion on your situation. She flat out said this woman was a kook. There is no reason why she should have thought he would react any differently on his first day away from Mommy with a STRANGER. In a STRANGE HOME. With STRANGE KIDS. Having separation anxiety should have been expected, even extreme separation anxiety.

And as for her judgments (and they were her judgements, not facts) that Nate is "behind" with his developments? That's ridiculous. At 13 months, it's perfectly normal for a baby not to be walking. And a slow eater? Holding his sippy cup wrong? She was really just trying to find things to nit-pick about. Who complains about these things?

A kook, that's who.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 03, 2008

Everyone needs to take a deep breath and stop freaking out about this situation. It just sounds like it wasn't a good fit. Look around and keep trying until you find something that works. Like others said, maybe a smaller setting or an individual person to start who would be able to give Nate more individual attention until he is more used to being without you. You don't usually even choose a hairstylist or a dentist on the first try, so it is expected that finding a caregiver for your son may take some time.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 03, 2008

Wow..color me confused.

As a home day care provider with give or take 20 yrs. experience I have never found myself in a situation where I felt it was my place or that I needed to say the types of things that woman said to you to another mom. I'm bewildered.

I cannot believe when you called to check on him she did not answer you truthfully about the difficulties he was having. Blows my mind.

Had I had Nate in my home, in the exact situation that this woman did, I can't imagine saying anything to you other than Nate had a difficult day but let's see how he is next time. Though I must admit I think only going once a week will make a for fairly long adjustment time no matter where he is. Though I also admit I don't know how you would get around that when one day a week is all you want.

However, for her to remark about him using his sippy cup "wrong" cracked me up. What's wrong to her is apparently just right for Nate. My sister is a lefty and everything she did was wrong to me...but you know what? It all worked for her. Seems like such a trivial thing for her to remark on. Perhaps she was reaching for things to pick at to make herself feel justified in feeling this way?

I've taken care of many children who could be called observers. That is not a flaw. That is a wonderful attribute. Instead of jumping in without a thought, Nate prefers to peruse the situation and decide for himself whether he wants to participate or not. No one knows Nate better than Nate. He'll make his move when he is ready. That goes for walking as well. Geesh...he's 13 months lady, not 13 yrs. *shakes head*

Her comment about him disrupting her business struck me very wrong. I have never looked at providing day care as a business. It's me providing a service that I love to perform for others and me being chosen to care for someone's most precious asset. I find it a privilege to do what I do. A joy. Not a business. That sounds to cold.

Find a new arrangement for you and Nate. Forget that woman...she obviously is not the one for the two of you.

Sorry you had to have such an unpleasant experience you first time out.

Posted by Blogger Poppy :  February 04, 2008

I have one word to describe a women like that . B I T C H. Of course you shoudl ease Nate into Child care and of course he is going to find it hard being away from the one constant in his life so far. As for the walking who cares!! Cole started walking at 10 1/2 months and I wish he hadn't as it means he is far too adventurous without having any concept of what happens next. I know lots of young ones who haven't walked until they are almost 18 months old. Grr to that sucky carer

anna at
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 04, 2008

FIRE HER! *lol* Okay so I only comment once in a while, I mostly just read. But I have a home daycare and would NEVER put a child through what she put that darling little boy through. Go with your gut and your little boy's reaction. I'm actually angry on your behalf! Wow no wonder daycare provider's have such a shoddy me please when I say not all of us are like that. Sometimes the best presented homes, are the worst.
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  February 04, 2008

Karla - I ran an Early Head Start Center for years (children aged 6 weeks to 3) and can heartily assure you that this woman was way out of line. All the behavior you describe is completely normal, and it is unprofessional and reckless for her to insinuate Nate is developmentally challenged! To know that for sure, it takes a significant period of observation, not one day. If she couldn't handle his needs, she either needs more helpers, or she shouldn't have taken him in the first place. Caregivers are human, too, and sometimes have an aversion to certain children, but for her to make such a long list when it's just obvious she didn't have the energy to deal with all the children's needs is unfair and unkind to you. I worked with at-risk families, and I can tell you that you have done an excellent job with your son. Nate will walk when he's ready, which will be very soon. He's naturally an observer, and that's not a developmental delay! She has no right to make you feel like your child has any problems when she doesn't even really know him. If I were her boss, I'd fire her ass. :) You're doing great, and try not to let a random person throw you off. You know your kid better than anyone, and you'll find the place he's meant to be.
Posted by Anonymous Jen :  February 04, 2008

She was completely and totally out of line. Is he not entitled to at least more than a day to adjust to this foreign concept of 'mom's not here, who the f^%$ are these people?' And wow, you should ease your kids into daycare by 3 months? Really? Is that in a book somewhere? Maybe it came in the manual with all the babies she's cared for? I don't think so...nope. I'm a SAHM and have been home with my son for all of his 4.5 years. He has been in a MDO program for the past 3 years, but it's not every day and not all day aaaannnndddd, I didn't get started at 3 months, nor would I have thought that was appropriate for me...for us. I would venture to say that there are many parents that NEVER put their kids into childcare of any kind until kinder. Are they wrong? No. And that's the point here - who the he!! does she think she is telling you what's right for you and your child? And for her to say or hint that she thinks he is developmentally challenged in some way after knowing him for all of a few hours (waaaaayyyy out of line and my mouth is still hanging open from reading that)? I would be seiously offended. All kids are different and move at their own pace. Can you tell me how it could be any other way? I'm pretty sure you could do your best to get a baby to do what you want them to do, but in the end, I guarantee they will ONLY do what they feel like doing. That's just how it is; they have their own agenda and comfort zones. She doesn't realize this yet and she's a childcare provider? I realize you don't know me from Adam, Mary, Jack, etc., but I would most certainly rethink sending Nate back there, if for no other reason now than that she may not treat him as you would want him treated.
Whew, that really got my blood boiling!
Posted by Blogger Finelly :  February 04, 2008

I had an in-home daycare kinda thing when I lived in Columbia. I'm not gonna lie, I had bad days. When I did, the kids knew it, and reacted in the same fashion, making the bad days worse. There was one little girl that I grew not to like after a while, and consequently, I had a harder time with her. Why? B/c I treated her differently. I didn't want to, but I did. She cried more, and she acted up more. I felt bad about it, and right when I decided daycare wasn't for me, Trey got transferred, so I got lucky. NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS would I have EVER told her mom that there was anything wrong with her. She was almost two, and still eating baby food from a jar and drinking from a bottle, both actions which I totally don't agree with, but I accepted that every family is different, and every kid is different. I whole-heartedly believe that this woman had a key role in Nate's behavior. Kids are not stupid, they can sense when someone doesn't care for them. She may not have done anything outright, but come on, you know when someone doesn't necessarily care for you, and so did he. She was unnecessarily cruel to you in telling you all of that.

Oh, Cole started walking at 9 months, and he still doesn't quite "get it". He regularly falls down for no reason whatsoever. Julia's little girl, Alison, didn't start till she was 14 mos., and she took off running. From what I've seen and heard, it's actually better for them to start later.

Also, I leave Cole places whenever I can. He goes to the childcare at the gym, is left with family, and even friends on rare occasions. Does he still cry when I leave him? Yes. Does he play by himself and watch more than interact? Oh yeah. This, mind you, with two siblings to play with all day and get plenty of socializing skills from. It's what one year olds do.

One more thing (yeah, I know this is long...). How does she expect him to get over his separation anxiety if you aren't able to leave him anywhere w/o you? Someone understanding and as experienced as she touts she is would have worked to help you help him get over it. She sucks, end of story.
Posted by Blogger Christi :  February 05, 2008

HOLY CRAP! What kind of stick does she walk around with up her butt? That is INSANE the things she said to you, not to mention rude, ignorant, slightly sketchy coming from someone that is supposed to have a background with children, RUDE (did I sat that already?) and just plain bitchy!

Look, I am a pre-school teacher. I have three boys myself aged 7, 4 and 10 months. None of my boys walked until 17 MONTHS of age...apparently by her standards that would make my boys mentally and physically retarded?! I mean come ON! I could go on and on.

What it comes down to is this. She likes "EASY" kids who play by themselves all day long and don't require her to get up from her lazy ass and actually comfort a small child because she is a LAZY caregiver...probably so she can sit her butt down on the couch all day and watch All My Children and get paid to do it. Personally, I would give her a call and tell her exactly what you thought of her and her opinions. If you'd like I will on your behalf.
Posted by Blogger Kris :  February 06, 2008

I also wanted to add something for future things like this...when people say things like that and you are stunned and scrambling for something to say...I always say this exactly (intonation is very importnat and capitalized)

"That sounded SO RUDE, did you REALLY mean it that way?"

The way people backtrack and apologize and stumble over their words is priceless. I use it about once a week now. I am sick of people who are so rude...hehe.
Posted by Blogger Kris :  February 06, 2008

Karla Nate is a clever little guy. It seems to me that he sat back and realized she is a bitch and he didn't like her. The fact that she talks the way she did only proves he was right. A good sitter takes their time with kids something this person is clearly not willing to do. He is better off without her.
Posted by Anonymous Nate's Uncle Chris :  February 06, 2008

I am just now catching up after a few days behind....I completely echo your other commentors here. I was reading your post and my jaw literally dropped open!!! I am sorry, but this "caregiver" who really was anything but to Nate, is grossly wrong and might I add a total bitch?

To insinuate, after one stinking day, that your child is developmentally BEHIND and that he was HURTING HER BUSINESS?? Incredible, truly incredible. How is she in this business?

That is definitely not a place you want to leave Nate. He is fine. You are fine. You did not overeact. The problem is this LADY, not you or Nate.

Hugs to you Karla!!!

Clearly, she was out of line. Put her comments out of your mind.

I didn't work full-time when my kids were small. I looked for places to leave them for short periods of time. Places where I could listen without being seen, just to know how they were getting on.

Is there a play group somewhere in your area? A toddler music class? A mom's group at a local church with childcare?

Sometimes I wonder if we should be listening to the kids more. Seems like the pendulum swings from one extreme to the other and middle ground is deemed too bland.

So the boy wants his mommy? He is still a baby! What is wrong with that?
Posted by Blogger Judy :  February 10, 2008

Hi...first time posting, but I just had to comment. :-)

I'm so sorry you're having to deal with this. It's so hard to find someone you feel comfortable leaving your child with and I can't imagine how stressed you must feel to have to find someone else.

You know, kids really range in terms of how they react to being left with a caregiver for the first time, but if she really has 10 years' experience I would have expected her to be able to handle things better. My son cried a wee bit, but then adjusted quickly. My daughter definitely had what I would call EXTREME separation anxiety for at least three weeks--and she was going to daycare every day. It took her a couple of months to actually seem happy in her new surroundings.

Here's the thing though...her daycare providers did not tell me how bad it was, at least not in detail. They told me she was having a bit of trouble adjusting, but they always reassured me that it was normal and that they could handle it. What good was it going to do to make me stressed out?

Only a couple of months later did one of her daycare workers say to me that in her 15 years she'd had "a couple of other kids have as difficult a time as Hana adjusting". But by that time, Hana was happy in her new surroundings, so although I felt bad that she'd had a rough time at least I knew that it had all worked out in the end.

Oh, and both my kids have been late walkers...14.5 months for Hana and almost 16 months for Jamie. None of their caregivers ever said anything negative about them not walking. In fact, if I ever said anything to indicate I was concerned they always rushed to tell me not to worry.

Oh, and on top of that BOTH my kids absolutely refused to drink from bottles or sippy cups before they started daycare. I tried and tried and tried, but all they wanted was to breastfeed. I was so stressed that they'd be horrifically thirsty all day. I know their caregivers were not thrilled with having to deal with that, but they did...spoonfeeding the kids water or milk at first, and gradually trying to get them used to a sippy cup. Within a week or two both of them were using sippy cups just fine.

On thing that did help for my kids, I think, was being in a daycare where there was more than one caregiver in the room. With Hana, it was especially helpful, as it meant that there was usually at least one person who could hold her and comfort her.

All the best to you in your search for the right person to care for your beautiful son. I definitely don't think that woman was the right one!
Posted by Blogger Mary Lynn :  February 10, 2008

the part where you say hes "in the corner, thumb in his mouth blanket firmly in his hand"
holy he reminds me of Lionel from Charlie Brown!
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  July 15, 2008


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