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Daycare Dilemma

My husband and I have encountered an odd situation with our daycare. It is a large, expensive day care. The teachers seem very attached to our son. I am thrilled that he gets such time and attention at daycare, but sometimes it seems to go over the top. My husband and I both work long hours and so when we pick the baby up at night we are very excited to see him. On several occasions, my husband has arrived, picked up our son to give a hello hug and before he has even finished picking him up, a teacher will literally take our son out of my husband's arms (without asking) while saying something like "Oh, I haven't had a chance to see "my" baby today! Let me see him." They frequently try to distract him and make faces at him while we are trying to say hello or good-bye, so that he will not look at us. Our son is about to move into the 12-24 month room and the teacher there told my husband that she refers to our son as "her son" because my son has "her" eyes. It creeps me out. We have not said anything because we appreciate the care they provide for our son and we don't want to make any waves. Still, we get very little time with our son due to our work schedules and we really cherish the time we have with him after work, even when picking him up from day care. Should we ask them to be more respectful of our roles as his parents or just suck it up and continue not to say anything?

Re: Daycare Dilemma

  • First, you are the parents, so if something bothers you, say so. But be prepared to get wide-eyed stares, because the ladies will probably be surprised (they probably don't realize they do this to your son or to you) by your comments. Also, be prepared for different treatment toward your DS and you too. Not necessarily bad treatment, just different and more distant.

    Also, this is a paid service, so you should be able to get what you want, within reason. But again, see comments above about their responses.

    I doubt they are trying to be "disrespectful of your roles as parents" as you stated in your final sentence. They have formed attachments to your son since they spend so much time with him. It's not a bad thing for a caregiver to view a child this least your kid isn't one of the ones who gets more ignored.


  • It's sounds to me like they're putting on a show to prove how well cared for and special they think he is. It also sounds like your concern is more about guilt that they can distract him from you.
  • You're complaining about 5 extra minutes of pick up time when your kid is there all freaking day? 

    My kids were both in daycare when they were young.  Long hours for both mom and dad, etc.  I was thrilled when an employee took a special interest in my child - I knew my child would feel special and loved.  Employees are not supposed to have favorites - so your son must really be something special!

    I hate to be cold to another working mom, but maybe the workers are trying to give him extra attention because they feel sorry for him, if he is one of the "first to arrive, and last to leave" kids.  The kids know when everyone else has been picked up and they are left behind. 

    Would I be worried about the lady who calls him "her" son?  No.  But if you want the pick up and drop off to go smoother, you should say that you are eager to get home and start dinner and get his bed and bath routine going.

    No one would be able to swoop my kid out of my arms, I'm not sure why your husband allowed this.  I have a feeling if you asked the daycare lady, you'd get a completely different version.  The truth is probably somewhere in the middle.


  • I'm in our son's daycare parent advisory committee and we recently reviewed the parent surveys.  Some folks complained about teachers "stealing their precious time" with their children at drop-off/pick-up. DH and I work, too, and our son, like yours, is one of the "special" ones (I agree with PP that there shouldn't be favorites but alas, they are, and we are very thankful for that, as we know that he gets extra love during the day).  The few times he's gotten upset at drop-off, I actually REALLY appreciated the teacher "stealing him" from us and hugging / distracting him right away... just a thought... they might be trying to make it less painful for him. In talking to one of the teachers about it, she mentioned the complaints from other parents and asked me if it was ok that she did that... for me it was... I wouldn't want to make it more painful to my son to leave (and leave him crying there!)!

    If I were in your position, I'd try hard to change my perspective on this.  I get that you're the parents and you have little time with your son, but I would also really focus on appreciating that my son is getting nurtured by loving people who care about him, and that he's happy during the day... and of course, try to make an effort to really have some quality family time together after daycare...

  • I think you're over thinking this. And I can't imagine that just being a little more assertive would solve this, especially at pick-up.

    A distraction and big hello at drop-off seems completely fine. I make a point of having DD say "Thank you to her teachers". - Maybe something formal like that would help you assert yourselves at pick-up a bit.

  • My DS attends a private preschool full-time. I am grateful that the staff is and always has been so attentive to him and very nurturing. He enjoys going there and I know that he is well-cared for. Some mornings he clings to me and I appreciate when one of teachers comes over to invite him to participate in an activity. She isn't being disrespectful but rather respectful of my work schedule and of his feelings. She wants to get him over being unhappy that I am leaving. And I repeat that I appreciate this.

    If the "son" comment bothers you, address it. But I think it's harmless and I bet she refers to other kids in the same manner. 

    Anniversary Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • At the risk of being the pariah of this thread I am going to say that this would totally bother me too. Not the distracting him part so much as her calling him "her son" and saying he has "her eyes". I have babysat and worked at a daycare and distracting the kids can help keep them from crying for hours when their parents leave, however I would never call another person's child my son or daughter. To me that is overstepping and I would be very upset and probably say something about it. Also the taking of the child out of your hands when you come to pick him up signals an attachment that I don't think is okay on the part of the daycare workers. 

     Unfortunately for you based on your other post about soda and sugar with the grandparents, you may be overreacting or exaggerating...  

    TTA buddies w/ xcitedbride2009

  • Honestly, I feel you are jealous of their relationship and time with your child and feeling guilty. 


    It is common for teachers to try to distract a child from you at drop off to help them get involved with the class and you leave without drawn out goodbyes or the che getting upset.

    The whole my child thing is just a saying - it means he is loved. You are being sensitive but if it bothers you - the next time they say it immediately correct them. "I know you don't mean anything by it and I love how much you cherish my son while at school but can you not call him your child?"


    I don't understand how a woman can remove a child from your husbands arms. Lol unless he allowed it.  

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