Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

Child has slept at home once in the past week!


Recommended Posts

Hi Sorry its me again...

 

I look after a child before/after school some days of the week. Her mum works shifts so childs time with me is different each week. Sometimes I have her as early as 6.30am and sometimes as late as 7.30pm. My daughter goes to bed at 7.30. This child is sometimes not going to bed til late as when collected they sometimes go to the shops or have to collect something from somewhere. Her parents are separated.

 

My concern is that she is spending less and less time in her own bed due to her mums work commitments. I feel she is putting her career before her child. In the past 8 days she has slept at home once, at dads, at grandmas, at nannas, at her mums nannas.

 

Ive just checked her school bag and she hasnt read her reading book for over a week - she should be getting through 2-3 a week. She is here til 7.30pm tonight and then sleeping at her nannas. Nan will prob take her to school in the morning and I will prob collect her - unless mum is working late again. Her homework that she has had since last friday is still untouched in her schoolbag.

 

Do I say something or just leave it? Im sure its non of my business but dont want the child to end up suffering.

 

She is 6yrs and Ive looked after since she was 18months old. I have a good relationship with mum but not sure she would take 'criticism' well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds like mum is really struggling and although I'm sure you mean well, I can only say that if it were me I wouldn't want to add to mums apparent 'difficulties'.

 

Can you lend some support by hearing her read and complete her homework whilst she is in your care?

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It may be a need to work, rather than putting her career before the child, she seems to have a good support network around her and the child, it is relatives she is staying with and in a way it is good that the child is having a relationship with all her family, so many times some of the family get excluded,

 

maybe a word about finding some reading to be done with whoever collects her, etc... as they may not be looking in her bag for it.. or if she is collected so late she is too tired to actually do it, or assume it has been done while with you.. I am sure the school will comment when they realise the school work has not been done.

​Homework for a 6 yr old is another kettle of fish, unless it was reading with them I never did it either, do not believe it is appropriate at that age but that is a personal view .. maybe she feels the same.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the first thing I'd be looking at would be whether I thought she was thriving under these living arrangements, or whether there is evidence that her general health and wellbeing, or learning and development is being compromised. You don't say in your post that you are worried about her health or emotional wellbeing, and other than saying she hasn't read or done her homework, you don't say that you're concerned about her development.

 

I don't think it is true to say that it isn't your business: you're a big part of this little girl's life as one of the professionals who cares for her, and in any case you've been looking after her for almost all of her life so you're obviously emotionally very close to her. Mum clearly relies on you to enable her to work - for whatever reason - and I imagine life as a single mum must be very hard: she needs her support system to work well or everything will fall down around her.

 

If you have clear evidence that this little girl is suffering because of the way her life is organised then you do have a duty to take some kind of action. This would need to be handled very sensitively though - the last thing you want to do is to alienate mum (especially if she does react adversely to what she sees as criticism, however well intended). It may be that mum is aware that things aren't ideal at the moment, but feels trapped and is unable to change things in the short term. Knowing that you're there to support her until she can make changes in the long term is probably a great comfort to her.

 

If there are no concerns about the child then you might conclude that the current arrangements are actually working: it might not be what you would choose for your family, but every family structure is different, and it sounds as if this little girl has a lot of people in her life who play a key role in bringing her up.

 

I'd keep an eye on things, keep talking to mum about how things are going and in the meantime, ask if you can help with hearing reading and so on. I have to say that as the most delinquent parent you'd ever meet, my children's homework was never done until the last minute (that's if I knew they had any!) and often the same reading book would come home for days. ;)

 

Good luck with it - this mum is very lucky to have you fighting her corner!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sunnyday - She doesnt appear to be struggling with work or financially and always seems to have plenty of money. She has a good well paid job and enjoys it. The child is quite spoilt but Im sure she would rather have her mum than material things. Im sure she could cut down her hours a bit at work but she seems to do above what she needs to do. The child doesnt want to do her homework with me or her reading.

 

Inge - I understand that its good for her to see her family but she is spending more and more time away from home. She seems to live out of a holdall.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sunnyday - She doesnt appear to be struggling with work or financially and always seems to have plenty of money. She has a good well paid job and enjoys it. The child is quite spoilt but Im sure she would rather have her mum than material things. Im sure she could cut down her hours a bit at work but she seems to do above what she needs to do. The child doesnt want to do her homework with me or her reading.

 

Inge - I understand that its good for her to see her family but she is spending more and more time away from home. She seems to live out of a holdall.

 

Ah right - thanks for the clarification - I had got hold of the wrong end of the stick (not for the first time :blink: ) I was picturing a poor single mum really struggling to cope.........I will 'wind my neck in'!!! xD :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi HappyMaz. She doesnt seem to be suffering in any way although she isnt doing to well in her spelling tests at school lately. This might be that the spellings are a lot harder for her though than they used to be. I know she only practices them the night before a test. I will ask mum if she would like me to help with homework and reading.

 

Thanks everyone for your advice. I think I will see how things go keep an eye on her.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ah right - thanks for the clarification - I had got hold of the wrong end of the stick (not for the first time :blink: ) I was picturing a poor single mum really struggling to cope.........I will 'wind my neck in'!!! xD :rolleyes:

I dont think I explained it well. I really appreciate your advice. Its good to see how others see things

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is such an interesting debate.

 

Every family works in a different way, and have different priorities based on what drives and motivates the parent. Mum has clearly organised her life so that her daughter gets the best care whilst she is at work and can't be with her. It might not be how we would choose to live but perhaps she sees it as the only way she can provide a decent quality of life for her daughter, whilst maintaining her own professional standing.

 

I really think you need to be guided by the evidence you have to hand - if the child is secure and happy, and developing well (or at least according to her abilities) then I think all you can do is keep a watchful eye. You're well placed to tease apart the issues and offer Mum what support you can (and guidance if needed or sought), but unless the child is at risk I don't think there's much else you can do.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it's sometimes very hard to separate the emotional response we have to situations we see children in with whom we have built up a close attachment and the professional response requiring us to take a step back and put our personal family values to one side.

 

You clearly care deeply for this little girl and want the best for her and that is really valuable. You are also giving her a stable environment and routine which, for her, is probably also very valuable.

 

If she doesn't want to do homework and reading with you perhaps this is the case with other adults too. It's great that you have identified this need. Can you find a way to introduce reading to after school activities in a different format so she is still getting to practise whenever possible?

 

Children can be very good at finding coping strategies in situations like the one you describe and you are clearly keeping a close eye and offering support so I think she'll be fine.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hmmm tricky one this

 

Just playing devils advocate here....why shouldn't mum rate her career so highly even if it appears to others she is putting her career before her child? Maybe it was the dad that really wanted a family and she went along with that as part of the marriage arrangement but now does not feel that she needs to compromise her work to care for her child.

 

Maybe dad should be taking on more of the childcare....if mum is working full time than maybe dad should be pitching in more?

 

When I was child we didn't have homework and so that fact that maybe in the evenings neither parent spent time with me didn't suggest I was not being cared for. If the child appears well cared for in every other respect then her school work is an issue between the parents and the school although if she was happy to let you help her that would be nice.

 

I do feel sorry for some mums who have a career, want a career and are seen to be less mumsy because of this......I do also wonder sometimes why these career mums do have a child as the child seems to be an added hassle in their Lives :(

 

Working mums can't always get it right it seems to me and this mum is I am sure doing what she thinks is the best thing for her and her child.....although I found it hard to juggle I certainly felt that going back to work when I had my first child made me a better mum when I was home.

 

No advise here at all JoanneLouise just a different view point :blink: :huh: :o

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Lots of great advise from everyone ^^^

 

I am a childminder, and make it part of my afterschool routine to get the children to do homework and read. I find that if it is done straight away i.e.: after snack 4pm they have more energy than later (I work 6:30-6 mon-fri).

 

It sounds to me as though mum has a great support network, I feel she is putting her career before her child. is not your judgement to make I'm afraid. If it wasn't for these working parents we would not have work ourselves

 

Well done for supporting the child, I think mum is very lucky you care about the lo so much, I know plenty of childminders that would not even think about it!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)