Jessica - posted on 11/23/2009 ( 33 moms have responded )
Is it worth it or do you end up working just to pay the bill. Do I trust a stranger to look after my 7 month old?
Jessica - posted on 11/23/2009 ( 33 moms have responded )
Is it worth it or do you end up working just to pay the bill. Do I trust a stranger to look after my 7 month old?
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Caitlin - posted on 12/06/2009
If you have an extra room in your house, hosting an au pair could be a great option for you. I don't know where you are, but I help families in the US find au pairs from all over the world to come care for their children. Our au pair is from Mexico and is like a member of our family. Our daughters are picking up Spanish, she keeps their toys straight and their laundry done, and I can rest assured that the girls are safe and happy with her personalized attention all day. Plus they aren't bringing home daycare germs, which is a huge pro! Shoot me an email at email@example.com if you'd like more information - and I can hook you up with a discount!
Jennifer - posted on 11/29/2009
My son started has a baby. I definatly checked out the places before I decided on one. In the beginning he did sick a lot. BUT, when the child starts school and their immunity is not built the child is going to get a sick a lot anyway. Now my son is 4 and does not get as sick as much. When he starts school he will not get sick so much.
He also is an only child and he is playing with other children.
I was a stay at home child. When I started school I was very shy and scared of the teacher, I actually did a lot of crying. My son is already used to having a teacher and being around other children and I think he is going to adjust well to school.
My son is also learning a lot and children have to have things down before they even start school.
Caron - posted on 11/29/2009
My daughter goes to a childminder since she was 10 months old. I pay about £250 a month. I think i get a good deal. The best decision I made. The only reason I did is because my eldest is at school and i get school holidays off. But I will stress it is hardwork juggling it all. Good family support and you work it out.
Also made her a very socialible child, because my childminder takes her to lots of groups as well as keeping her busy at home
Audrey - posted on 11/28/2009
I started my son at 9 months and he is an angel at daycare. He enjoys it and gets really upset that the weekend he doesn't get to go. In Alberta there is a Child Care Subsidy which covers about 75% on a scale of course. You could check to see what kind of programs are provided and if you qualify.
Corrie - posted on 11/28/2009
My daughter has been in child care since she was six weeks old. While it is always hard to leave them with a stranger, as long as you trust your gut feeling about the person watching your child everything should be fine. An important thing to remember, is that if YOU don't trust the person then neither will your child. They pick up on our anxieties about situations. Daycare can serve a few purposes. Children who do not attend daycare as small children tend to have a harder time adjusting to being away from their parents when it is time to start Kindergarten. It also allows them to socialize with children their own age. Yes there is the risk them getting sick, but, another way to look at that is they are building up their immune system. My daughter got RSV when she was three weeks old but she's been pretty healthy since then. Just make sure you check their qualifications and everything should be fine.
M. Sharon - posted on 11/28/2009
I'm a single mother who work as a police officer in Atlanta, GA. I work alternating shifts so, child care outside the home is all my son and I know. I've had him in home child care places. He'll be 4 in january and he enjoys its. I've had a few times when he was younger and I felt a diaper was not changed properly. I did when he was in diapers use two different brands. I took luvs to daycare and used pampers at home. Child care is expensive but for some of us we have no choice. You just pay attention to your child reaction to the person that you select to care for him/her. My son showed a dislike for one child care provided assistance and I took that as a sign that something was not right. the problem was corrected with her not working for the provider.
Aleid - posted on 11/26/2009
Worth it! My son has been in day care 3 days a week since he was three months. My husband and I both work 4 days a week. He goes there from 7 till 18 and he loves it.He always smiles, enjoys playing with the other kids (he is now 2) and they are no strangers, not even when he went there for the fist time, we went on some practice rounds and they came to see him when was a new born. Yes it is a lot of money, but I like my work and consider how much money you would loose not working for 4 or 6 or 8 year and then having to go back, that is an enormous career break. I trust them with him every second he is there. He has fun and is a very sweet, well behaved and very very social kid. I think kids that do not go to daycare do miss out on the social aspect, but of course I do miss out on my son because I work, but I still think it is worth it!
Keshia - posted on 11/26/2009
My son didn't go to daycare until he was almost 2 years old. My aunt took care of him before than and I loved it but I put him in daycare to develop more social skills. He did very well the first week and he is still doing well the only thing I don't like about a daycare facility is that they get sick constantly because all of the germs. Everyone doesn't take care of their child like you so they might send them sick or with a bad cold. I also constantly check up on my son whether it's calling or pop up check. I let them see that I am a very concern mother. It's hard to let someone take care of your child but you pray over your child everyday and ask God to protect them when they are not with you. Visit different places and ask them question until you feel comfortable with one. I did and if a daycare tells you that they don't like pop ups then don't put your child their. It is expensive but I think it's worth it because my son has learned so much things. I encourage you to keep looking and if you don't feel good about it wait a little while longer until you are. Always go with that gut feeling. Good luck!
STACY - posted on 11/25/2009
This is a hard one to answer. Of course everyone has their thoughts about it. There are good things and bad things about day care. Let me start off by saying I pay more in daycare a month then we do a house payment. That is only for 1 child! It is crazy. We had him at home for awhile with daddy. I didn't feel like Payton (my son) was getting enough activity due to husband being tired from working nights. Anyway this affected Payton's speech a great deal. He started daycare and has improved a great deal. So yes it stinks to have to pay for daycare but I think it helps kids learn skills and interact with other kids. I wish I could be at home with him but I love that he can go to daycare. I hope this makes sense.
Stacy - posted on 11/25/2009
Well I can speak from both sides of that question.... I had my children in child care and then I was a childcare provider... When I was working It seemed like it was going all toward childcare but you have to look at specific facilities.. sometimes they can save you money .. some centers provide diapers and food for the children..... As the provider you get attached to the children and they get attached to you it happens.. but i would rather have my children with some one they like and are comfortable around than someone my child dislikes just so that i feel better.
Rachel - posted on 11/25/2009
We had an excellent experience, well after we found the right person. We decided to go with child care in someone's home instead of normal "day care". I wanted a more homey experience for my son. We had to fire our first childcare provider for several reasons (letting him sleep in the swing, having "Bible" studies of a different religion while watching him and the final straw was when my husband went to pick him up one day and found him asleep in the swing inside with the front door open, screen door locked and everyone else outside in the backyard!!! ahhh!!!!), but our second choice turned out to be nearly perfect.
The lady we finally went with, named Katrina, had 4-5 kids in the home, all of whom were well behaved and loved babies. She had several kids of her own, who were all in high school and seemed like good kids. She and her family attended our church. She ended up being like a third grandma to our son. She respected our wishes regarding nap times, eating (when he was weaned from breast milk), and so forth. The only thing I didn't like is that they always had the tv on in the background. But, I know a lot of families are like that. And the kids were usually on the lower level playing, so they weren't watching a ton of tv at least.
The advantages for us and our son are that he had a great outlet for his social nature. He loved the other kids and learned some good social skills early on. As a result, he doesn't have a lot of the "only child" issues that a lot of kids have. He's very friendly, shares well, tries to get other kids and adults to play with him. And he also has been very secure. He knows he is loved and well cared for at home and at childcare. So, he has never struggled with separation anxiety. When he was 6/8 months old, he would cry when I left, but our baby sitter would hug him close and comfort him until he was okay. He was never left to cry alone or feel insecure. He has had great structure, good influences and no problems. We couldn't ask for a better situation!
I hope to stay home after we have our second baby. But, I plan to stay in touch with our childcare provider and still use her for rare occasions, where she is available.
Erin - posted on 11/25/2009
I worked in daycare for many years. I have a son now and while I have been lucky enough to have my dad watch my son since he was a baby, I would not hesitate to put my son in a GOOD daycare if I had too. Since I have experience as a provider I can tell you that most daycare providers really care about the kids they watch and form real bonds with them. Of course there are many children under one person's care, which usually varies depending on the age, but we always made sure each one was fed, clean, safe, learning age appropriate things, and received some individulaized attention every day. I am a strong believer in the fact that a child in daycare is well socialized, well behaved, and well adjusted.
Of course it is important to do your research. Make sure your daycare is licensed by the state and if you can afford it look for a daycare that is nationally accredited. These daycares have lower provider to child ratios, stricter rules about nutrition and food preperation, require structured curriculum for children starting at age 1, as well as requirements for provider education and training. You should also be able to contact your state's Child Youth and Families Department and inquire as to how many, if any, complaints a particular center has received. When you visit a potential daycare ASK QUESTIONS! Some things to look for are child to provider ratio, making sure children are activiely engaged in structered activies, how providers interact with children, emergency procedures, cleanliness, potential safety hazards, and provider turn over rate. Most centers have parents who agree to be references that you can contact and ask about their experience with daycare. Many daycares have also installed web cams in their classrooms so that you can check in at anytime so look for/ask about these.
Even when you do all your research and find a good center, of course it is never easy to leave your child at a daycare and the adjustment time varies with every child. The most important advice that I could give a parent leaving their child for the first time is no matter how nervous or upset YOU are at leaving your child don't let this show to your child because this will only make it worse for the child. Do your best to act postive and reassure your child that s/he will have a good day and you will be back. Of course you can call and visit as often as you want. Any center that does not allow this or acts bugged at your inquires should raise a huge red flag.
Jocelyn - posted on 11/25/2009
It's hard to trust a stranger with your most precious treasure, but if you find a good provider you will not regret it. I stayed at home with my son for the first 14 months and while I loved the one-on-one bond we formed, I had to start working full-time again to help with the bills. I am also an infant teacher, and make sure the infants in my care are clean, safe, stimulated, and happy. Even for infants I create lesson plans with our daily activities and make sure to have several that help tune fine motor skills, gross motor skills, problem-solving, sensory exploration, and language. I hope you can find someone right for you. :)
Jennifer - posted on 11/25/2009
My son has started in daycare & i recently switched shifts & now i'm home with him during the week mon-thurs. and my husband is home with him when i'm at work fri.-sun. The opposite shifts suck, but honestly my son is 18 months & i've seen a huge improvement in his behavior & happiness since one of his parents is always home with him! the cost is so expensive. if you stay home think at how much you're saving not necesarily the wages you're losing. If you can get a diff. shift job then your spouse or sign. other. See if family can watch your child while you're at work as well. If your dad is awesome with babies, then so do it. But if someone has a short fuse when it comes to stress or can't handle a baby cry or anything of theneeds of a child, stay home! honestly, your kid will be in the hands of daycare personnel or whoever cares for him when you're at work, it has to be someone that can give him love, attention, and positive attitude! I love being home with my child now..it took 17 months for me to get onto a different shift so we could save on cost of a sitter, which was $400 p/month. I'm a full time student too..my husband & i both work full time as well...we need the income. its all on if you trust someone. but i also believe once my son is a lil older such as 3 or 4 he will pry go into a pre-school/daycare environment since i don't have any other children for him to interact with yet and at that age, they want to learn & need to be around other children for social & learning reasons as well, but suspect the child will pick up other childrens habits and create his own!
Lisa - posted on 11/25/2009
i prefer my family to watch my children as you know them inside an out so they wont hurt your childern you hear so much horror stories about child minders abusing kids but every 1 has child minders an are happy with them an have no problems with them its a personal choice
Amy - posted on 11/25/2009
Do you your homework, ask questions, talk to the caregivers and most importantly trust your own instincts. I believe child-care is actually beneficial in raising well socialized, un-pampered children who know how to play with others, bond with someone other than their parents, build relationships and give Mom a life of her own too! My daughter has been in daycare since she was 11 months old and is a happy, well-adjusted, well-behaved, and healthy child with lots of friends, can talk easily with both kids and adults, is imaginative, independent and well-rounded, she's loving, gets lots of attention from me when we're together - I definitely prefer part-time over full-time daycare if you can swing it... but was full-time for almost 3 years. Now she's four, in her 2nd year of pre-school and gets glowing reviews from her teachers. She was in a home daycare for the first 2 years, which I would recommend - smaller, more attentive setting over group care. Again, just do your homework in selecting a good one, ease into it gradually if possible and trust your gut. Everything will be fine!
Carrie - posted on 11/24/2009
We had a babysitter for my son, i thought this was the best thing to do, she ended up stealing my son's dad's bank account information and going on an on-line shopping spree. My son started at a daycare right after that and he has the greatest time playing with kids his age. The teachers were really easy to get to know and were very nice and comforting, even the director is great! I have been happy with my daycare, with most the employees, but there have been a few things that made me wary, but those teachers were so gone after the incidents occurred.
Shannon - posted on 11/24/2009
I have my 19 month old son in day care and he loves it !!
i put him in day care when he was 12 months old and when i went back to work..i work right down the street from Kids Can Doodle and i bop in and see him every day =]
he loves being around kids his own age and size..and the classrooms are separated by age..he is still in the "One's" group. It is totally up to you.. It is very expensive also..i an spending $120 a week. but my day care thank god is very flexible and works with me.
check them out and they will let you come down and scope out the place beefore you choose =]
Susan - posted on 11/24/2009
webcam, webcam, webcam. I love my daycare, and so does my son. He has been going since he was 6 months, and is almost 2 now. It is a great daycare with very loving, caring staff. And if you have any concerns, they address them right away. But most of all, it has a webcam in the room. So I can go online anytime of the day and look in on him and see what they are up to. I've even called when I notice things (like he was missing his blanket one nap time). Next thing I know, I saw them putting his blanket on him. I love that he interacts with other kids, and has several playmates we do playdates with on the weekends. As for illness, yes they seem sick for the first 3-4 months they start, but then once they pretty much have 'caught everything' they don't tend to get as sick anymore. They also teach him things I wouldn't even think of, like throwing his own plate in the trash. Along with all the other standards (ABC's, 123's, colors, animals ect...).
What to look for: Did they have a set curriculum each day, how do they interact with the children, do you get a good vibe, is it clean, do they send home daily reports of how your child did that day, and most of all do the children there seem happy.
Amy - posted on 11/24/2009
It depends on how much you both make. If you have a parent who makes just a little more than what daycare costs, then I suggest just staying home. If you both have higher paying jobs, then I think daycare is great, otherwise you need to learn to live with less money.
My husband is a stay at home dad and does a wounderful job! we will also be sending our son to pre-school once he gets 2 as well, that way he has the interaction with other kids his age. If you have your child stay at home, it is recommended to send them to pre-school as early as 2.
Orshi - posted on 11/24/2009
i'm a working mom! and I LOVE my daycare. Babies need to socialize just as much as adults do. Granted i hat hat its so expensive, but we just adjusted the budget and we are fine. My son loves his daycare. Do your research, and go with ones your fellow mom friends recommend. I take my son to Kindercare centers and he is thriving!
Cristina - posted on 11/23/2009
now days it is so hard to say anymore,as a mom i do not feel comfortable leaving my child with someone i do not know,let alone day care,u are right about one thing,day cares as well as sitters charge a arm and leg, heck all the places ive ever checked out would've taken all my check every week but $50 and to me that ridiculous, i must say im very blessed to have family that help out as much as they can.. family is where it is at!!!!
Michele - posted on 11/23/2009
I was lucky enough to have my parents watch my daughter till she was 3, then she transitioned to pre-school at a childcare center. I don't like in home daycares... I feel that there isn't enough accountability. You don't know who is going in and out of that house during the day. And everyone needs a break from crying babies now and then, at a center, there is someone to step in if the nedd arises. It is extremely difficult, but try to find a place that other have recommended, that you have checked out further, and if your gut says no at anytime, leave! Your child is your most precious gift.
Sylvia - posted on 11/23/2009
Well, my salary is 55% of our household income, so not going back to work after my mat leave was never really an option (unless maybe we wanted to downsize our living quarters ... from a 640-square-foot one-bedroom flat). We were fortunate enough to get a spot for DD at a great daycare that's practically next door to my work, so I could drop her off just before 8:00 and pick her up just after 4:00. I had a long commute in those days -- over an hour each way -- but at least we were together (guess what? yes, you *can* nurse a one-year-old on the city bus ...).
Now, when I say "great daycare" I don't mean it was shiny and "academic" and had personalized electric toothbrushes for each child (I swear I am not making that last part up: there's a very posh daycare centre in our old neighbourhood that really does have those, as well as an on-site chef. It was scary -- the staff member who gave us the tour apologized for the fact that the staff were wearing jeans, explaining that it was because of March Break, and I was like ... dude, they work with little kids! what are they supposed to wear, twinsets and high heels?!). I mean the staff were ECE credentialled and really, really nice; the kids were busy and happy and got to spend lots of time outdoors; the lunches and snacks were reasonably healthy (not that my kid ever ate them :P); the atmosphere was friendly and casual, parents were encouraged to hang around and chat, and the staff knew the kids well and seemed to really care about them; the facilities weren't fancy, but they were clean and well maintained; and many of the staff, including the director, had been at the centre for 15, 20, even 25 years (indicating that it's a good place to work and that there's a good level of continuity for the kids). I won't lie to you and say that making the transition wasn't hard; it was hard. I was glad I hadn't had to do it sooner (DD was 13 months when my leave ended). But in the end she was very happy there, made friends, developed close relationships with some of her teachers. I made a couple of good friends, too. It was a good experience.
The person looking after your child should not be a stranger. By the time you leave them in charge, you and your child should have got to know them enough that you feel confident in their ability to take good care of him. If you genuinely don't feel comfortable with a potential caregiver, you should probably be looking for a different one.
Karen - posted on 11/23/2009
It is not an easy thing and at first it seems like all your money goes to daycare. I think it is a personal choice as well as circumstantial. I need to work and I was lucky to have a daycare when the kids were babies that I was comfortable with. While had circumstances been different I might not have chosen to be working full time I think that it is good for the kids too. It was not easy to leave them but it got easier and as long as you have a routine set up they will not suffer by it as much as you feel they might.
Lindsay - posted on 11/23/2009
As a mother that has to work, period-daycare is the best option for me. The problem I find with a personal sitter is, like normal ppl they may have something come up with no notice-sickness, death in the family, emergency, anything. So, it would do me no good to hire a sitter since I cant afford to miss work. So I chose a christian based program that is actually part of a church, a block away from my job, and has a low child to worker ratio.
As far as illnesses, viruses, etc--all children are going to get them sooner or later, and you may risk lowering your child's immune system by being TOO overprotective and not letting them be naturally exposed to those sorts of things. Also-even with my 5mo old, I can tell already he is socially stimulated being around other babies day after day. I think its good he's being exposed to other people.
Louise - posted on 11/23/2009
It was the hardest thing that I had ever done, but Jessica started in daycare at 5 1/2 months. She went full time, my intention was to drop to part time if either of us had any problems. I had to work at least part time so we could pay the mortgage. It has been an outstanding success, I love my job, she loves nursery, has plenty of friends that she looks forward to seeing and we are still incredibly close. We just make sure we have tons of quality time when we are together. Go by recommendation if you can, it will work, trust me!!
Stephanie - posted on 11/23/2009
I think it is worth it too. It was an EXTREMELY hard thing to do the first time we took our son to daycare, but he has learned so much, has good little friends, does a lot of fun projects, and they even have small field trips. He started when he was 5 mo and now he's a little over 2. I know he loves to go and I feel very at ease with the people that are watching over him. It allows my fiance and I to both work since neither of us have family in the area.
Jamie - posted on 11/23/2009
for us, it is definitely worth it. my husband is in school full time, so i make the primary income, and she is only in daycare for half of the day. i make enough to support day-care without any problems. it depends on your income if it's worth it to you.
as far as trusting her with a stranger, she started day-care at 8 weeks, and it is extremely important to get references and meet with the provider several times before the care actually begins. we are 100% comfortable with our provider.
Sally - posted on 11/23/2009
Not sure where you live, but in Australia our childcare centres need to be accredited with the National Childcare Accreditation Council, as well as licensed - in Canberra the Licensing is with the Children's Policy and Regulation Unit. The certificates showing accreditation and licensing MUST be clearly displayed within the centre.
Licensing looks at the facts and figures of the centre: is there the appropriate staff:hild ratio, are there enoug resources, are the environments safe, etc.
Accreditation looks at the quality of care: the interactions between the staff and children, the educational programs, the relationships with parents etc.
Both the NCAC and CPRU's websites have information about childcare centres. The NCAC shows the current accreditation status of centres and the CPRU website shows any breaches of Licensing conditions. Any established centres (more than a couple of years old) will also have a graph showing how the centre was rated according to the accreditation principles. If you're in Australia it would be worth checking these out for any centres you are considering.
But really it comes down to how you feel when you walk into a centre, the vibe you get from the staff, and how happy the children in care seem to be. Make sure they are interested in your child and family's individual needs. Also, you should be able to drop into a centre you are considering and have them show you through it straight away, without any warning or having to book in a time. I have very little faith in centres that aren't prepared to show you the reality of any given time/day.
I am a qualified preschool teacher and have worked in childcare here in Canberra for 14 years. I've seen great centres and not so great centres. Good luck!
Kelly - posted on 11/23/2009
My son started childcare at eight months and has loved it since the beginning and has a very positive relationship with the carers. We are really lucky though because we have a great childcare that has won a lot of awards and is now next to impossible to get into. In regards to the cost, even though ours is actually reasonably priced compared to others, about half my wage go towards the upfront fees (I'm in Australia where we get a 50% childcare tax rebate quarterly) which seems ridiculous, but we don't have any other options. I do know other people who have worked out that they are better off not working and living off one wage, so it's worthwhile investigating what is best for you.
Amanda - posted on 11/23/2009
well ladies i think that day care is ok for older kids but for little ones why not go the route of leaving her home with someone..child minder. Why i say so..at daycare there are usually other kids there and they spread any infections easily between each other ie flue, rashes etc. Also the daycare facility has to look after a number of kids so what are the chances that they will give your baby specialized attention and i feel at that age they need a lot of attention.
Melissa - posted on 11/23/2009
No, it is not worth it and it is extremely hard to trust a stranger. I've had to put my soon-to-be 2 year old in daycare recently. It's been hard and it took about a month for him to adjust. Not only has it added to our financial strain, it's caused a lot of worry on my end. I was lucky to stay at home with my oldest until he started preschool. Now he is a first-grader, but becase of certain events I've had to return to work.
If you can avoid it, I would. But, not all of us are that lucky so be picky in your choice.
Some of the things I looked at while visiting the daycares included how clean the bathrooms and kitchens were because of germs, food prep, etc. Also, how dirty they let the kids get (snotty noses, dirty hands) and how long they let the kids cry and or act out. Definitely consider how the staff speaks to the kids. Even after choosing a daycare, I'm particular and cautious and the director and staff are well aware of my concerns.