Conflicted on what's best To amuse my boy

Janine - posted on 09/08/2016 ( 2 moms have responded )




I need advice!
I was a stay at home mom with my son until he was 2 years 2 months. I was pregnant again, and had the opportunity to work for 6 months in the summer for a family business part time until the baby was here, just to make some extra money. I was dreading putting my son in day care because he was definitely a mommas boy, and was just recently getting better with being left with anyone but me without crying.
So I put him in a home day care Monday, Wednesday's and Friday's and he cried a lot when I dropped him off for a month and would cry on and off through the day. After a month he would just whimper a bit when I left him, and all of a sudden my provider quit because she found another job. So I had to start again finding one, and it took about a month. Again, he cried every morning that I dropped him off for about a month and a half. Then he seemed to love going and would only randomly cry here and there when I would drop him off, and a lot of days I would have to do a lot of convincing him to go.
The plan was to take him back out after the baby came because I love having him home with me, but he seemed to really enjoy going; no more crying when I dropped him off and was excited to see people, and it was nice to adjust to having a new baby again, but after about 2 weeks, he started to cry again when I dropped him off, and had to be pried off of me. And he would cry on and off through the day. I felt extremely guilty leaving him, since I was home and didn't have to take him. So after 2 and a half weeks of crying I finally took him out. There was a problem at daycare, and that was the providers son would pinch and scratch his face near his eyes when he was angry, and whenever he was at the door, my son didn't want to go near him. So I don't know if maybe that had something to do with it, because it had been happening before, but lately was happening about 1-2 times out of 3 days a week.
So now that he is out, I feel extremely guilty about having him out! He's only asked a couple times about the provider, and once about one of the other kids (there was 6 kids in total). Before I had him in care we had play dates 1-2 times a week and would go to early years as much as possible, did lots of outside time, visited grandparents etc , we didn't just sit around the house. But now I just feel bad that he's not around kids as much. It took him a while to play with the kids at the daycare, he is more independent, even on his play dates he tends to go off by himself to play.
I have been going to early years 3 days a week in the morning, setting up as many play dates as I can, going to the zoo, parks, walks, beach, library as often as possible. But by the time we come home in the afternoon, I just feel guilty that he's not doing as much at home as he would be at daycare, like the afternoons are too quiet. When it's this hot out, it's hard to do much outside, especially with a new baby.
I've been doing a lot of research, and from what I've read it seems like my son may not have been completely ready to be away from me for so long, and that the amount of socialization he's getting with what I'm doing with him is more than enough. And I've noticed that he acts out wayy less now. While he was in day care, when he got home and on the days he was home he would have tempers, and wake up grumpy many morning. Since he's been home he's been extremely good and have MAYBE 1-2 tempers a week, compared to 3-4. And he listens much better, uses his manners consistently. So I'm not sure entirely where my guilt comes from, it seems just to happen in the afternoon lull (he doesn't nap anymore), where we are tired from being out in the morning but still have the afternoon to kill. He asks for tv, and I'll allow an hour for quiet time but he never sits through the whole hour anyways. He's got lots of toys and we do crafts and go outside if the weather isn't too bad, but I'm worried that he would rather be somewhere else. Even though he's probably just tired (if he acts out its always in the afternoon).
I'm probably just doing what every parent does and worrying all the time about everything lol but I'm looking for advice or reassurance or if someone else went through something similar. I have read a lot about how good day care is, and I completely agree in some cases. If your child is very outgoing, or is older and closer to school. And he will be going back in next summer when I start working again . But I am pretty confident in knowing I don't want him back in daycare, I do believe he's not completely ready, and while I'm home I'm going to have him home since he's only this age once! But I'm also looking for more programs, or play groups, or other parents to get together with, preferably in the afternoon (which seems to be rare for toddlers ) so that he can make some consist friends and keep busy. In the winter my mom is going to be taking him for a few hours once a week so that he can have some time away from me with someone he loves being around, and I can have some one on one time with the baby.
Any advice is welcome!


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Jacqueline - posted on 09/08/2016




I can tell you my experience I have two daughters one just turned 2 and the other will be 4 in october. My oldest started daycare at almost 2 years old. My youngest started at 6 months. For my oldest it was hard for her to adapt to the environment and she was constantly acting out. I do feel that for each child its different and they learn to get use to their environments and adapt at different times. But for us I think if I would have put her in daycare when she was younger she would have had an easier time transitioning. At first they were part time only going mondays, wednesdays and fridays. The other two days either my mom or my MIL watched them. I do feel that being full time is best because they get used to the routine. For my youngest she has had no problem at all and seemed to adapt to the environment very fast. They now both go full time and they love it. We rarely get any behavioral complaints about our oldest now. I am sure you will make the right choice. Good luck!

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Sarah - posted on 09/08/2016




Sounds like you are doing a great job. The grass always seems greener on the otherside, which then sets in guilt. I personally would not change what you are doing. When he turns 3 yrs old (or school year that he is 3 yrs old) you could do a preschool program that met for a couple hours in the afternoon. This would give him some "school" time, get him use to being away from you, give you some one-on-one with baby, and some down time.

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