View Full Version : Did I give up too easy?

11-08-2013, 08:56 PM

I have been feeling like such a failure since Friday. It's one of these situations where I am half/half knowing what I did was right but feeling so wrong about it.

A bit of background, mother and child just came to London moving from Italy. Little girl doesn't speak English and is 2 and half years old. She still sucks dummy and wears nappies as mother says shes too lazy to use a proper toilet.

Anyways, mother and I discussed a few hours to start before throwing this child in my care for 10 hours in a day. I asked her to start off with an hour, then two possibly the next day to see how things went.

So, I had this new child come in just for an hour on Friday late morning as the start to settling in and then arranged two hours on Saturday morning. So literally within a few minutes of the mother leaving, this child was quiet, not crying, I was so happy! but I shouldn't have been. Within 5 minutes of this, this child began to attack the other children in my care. No one could come near this child or they would have been pushed and almost punched! and the other children hadn't even done anything!
I witnessed attacks on almost all the children and every time we said no, this child got a little upset but got over it. Then she would go back to what ever toy she saw other children play with and want to take it.
Finally we said no for a final time before this child had a proper breakdown, throwing herself on the couch, trying to bite herself, screaming. It was horrendous. Both my assistant and I tried to calm her down because we thought it must be quite scary to be in a different country with no possible way to communicate but she got worse. Sooooo we left her thinking it's possibly a tantrum. Then she became clingy to my assistant and didn't want to let her go. She literally clung to her and wouldn't let my assistant attend to the other children who were also crying.

I told the mother to come back asap. She was literally here in 5/10 minutes of my text and her conversation really annoyed me asking what she could do now, would I take on this child, she tried to put the child's behaviour as temporary then I found out in conversation this child has already had these type of moments with her grandmother around!!! I told the mother I was not prepared to take on this child due to having to care for the other children in my care and wouldn't be happy worrying about things all the time. I suggested to the mother she take the child to playgroups to see her child's behaviour and try and "train her" so to speak on behaviour nos and yes's.

Have I done the wrong thing? I know this child was probably upset at the new environment etc but then my heart is saying I should be taking care of the other children. My work is so quiet but I just couldn't take this child on, especially if this girl begins to attack me, my assistant or my daughter?????????

blue bear
11-08-2013, 09:34 PM
To be honest at two and half and with communication difficulties her behaviour would be what I'd expect. Two year olds tend to lash out when they can't tell you what they want or need. Clinging onto your assistant and taking control of the situation was her way of coping. Only you can say if you could manage. This child's particular needs as well as those of the other children in your care, sometimes the hardest thing is saying no.

11-08-2013, 10:03 PM
I don't think so! I think the whole point of settling is for everyone to test drive the arrangement, and if it's not working, it's not working! Only you and your assistant can know what went on and how bad it was, and if you both think it's a non starter then it probably is. Sad, but move on. I hope Mum finds a solution, but don't feel bad that it isn't you!

11-08-2013, 10:46 PM
This child needs a lot of support, maybe even 121 care. Big communication issue together with 2 y/o behaviour = fireworks!
I don't think I could manage as I have other children to care for too, and my own and no way would I allow another child to injure them, I would feel responsible if after settling in and this happened to allow her to come back and do it again.
I think you totally did the right thing for you and your setting. x

12-08-2013, 12:10 AM
I think you did the right thing absolutely. You have the other children and your assistant to think about.Sometimes it just takes one child to upset the balance of what you have. It sounds a lot more than the terrible twos to me as well.

12-08-2013, 06:23 AM
I agree with the others, you have to think about your setting and what you can offer each individual child. Sounds like you did the right thing :-)

12-08-2013, 06:56 AM
I always explain to the parents of new children that I have to put the needs of my current children first - and sometimes the 'mix' simply doesn't work.

That's what settling in is for. Give yourself a hug and move on xx

12-08-2013, 07:11 AM
It's up to you whether to have this little girl after weighing up whether you can balance her needs & your existing mindees but I wouldn't have her usless she came with her Mum for a few sessions first. Her Mum can help her/you communicate & she can get used to the setting with 1-2-1 attention from her Mum. Then there's time for you to pick up some basic Italian and for the little one to pick up some basic English. I try to do this first with English speaking children so I'd be really relluctant to have her here without her Mum at first.

12-08-2013, 08:04 AM
To be honest if mum didn't stay for the first settling-in session and just left her with you at 2 and a half, hearing what is an alien language to her I would imagine she was scared.

If at all possible we do a couple of visits with Mum/Dad and the child with the parent gradually going out of sight of their child for little bits of time, then a couple of short visits where parent stays for 5/10 mins then pops out to the shops or wherever. Then longer visits..... but this is the ideal and not always viable.

I'm not saying that you were wrong in letting her go, you saw the way she attacked the other children, you saw her temper, you heard that this happens even when family are around..... so to protect the children in your care plus your own child I think you have done the right thing and if she can I think mum should try and socialise her daughter by taking her to different groups until she feels more settled.

Enjoy your day and try not to worry about it, you have done the right thing :group hug:

donna porter
12-08-2013, 09:01 AM
I reckon you did the right thing. You have to think of the other children in your care