Any One Else Taking Baby to Work With Them? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 1 Old 12-29-2001, 06:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Anyone else taking Baby to work with them?

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Author Topic: Anyone else taking Baby to work with them?
Member posted 05-24-2001 08:29 AM
I have recently returned to work with my 10 month ds. I am a self employed chiropractor and very committed to both AP and my patients. So far it has gone reasonably well, but as I get busier...I have occasional rough days. I am looking for advise on:
1) naps: ds will only go to sleep nursing or being held and when I am too busy (I try to schedule a break in my schedule to "put him down" but conflicts often arise) he does not nap and gets increasingly irritable and clingy.

2)independance: I want him to be near me and part of our everyday life but occasionally fear I am fostering excessive clingyness. Have I fallen prey to the anti AP attitudes of letting your kids suffer in the name of "independance" or is this asomewhat realistic concern? By this I mean, when I am adjusting a patient and he is crawling around my legs whining and crying to be held, I will ignore him until I am finished with said patient (5 minutes max usually)

I feel that we are doing pretty well, but I am sometimes undermined by the attitudes of those around me (MIL, staff members, etc). I guess I just need some encouragement and advise in fine tuning this arrangement. I am hiring a 14 yo girl to act as mothers helper during my busiest periods over the summer, but what will I do in the fall????

I look forward to a little sisterhood, Not many people in my area have even heard of AP and most think I am crazy to try it. (silly)

Member posted 05-24-2001 09:32 AM
Well, I empathize with you. When I get pg and have my baby, I am planning on leaving my corporate job and working as a post partum doula, bringing the babe with me. I wonder about the exact things you are dealing with now.
I think the idea of a summer helper is great. How about an older retired gramma or grampa coming to help you, who's great with kids for the fall/school year? Someone who's mobile, and would like to work, and who loves children. I think it sounds like the perfect job for me when I'm 80 years old

Napping is a tough one. Does he have a comfy area all set up for him to nap in? A nice wool rug or comforter etc? Any special nap time music? I found a heartbeat lullabye tape worked great at my preschool. This may go against your thoughts, but would a small 1/2 size crib/play yard make him feel more secure to sleep in in the office? Does he feel exposed or like he might get stepped on underfoot, making him wary of sleep?

Can your staff members help you hold him or play with him while adjusting folks? Can you hire a highschooler to come in after school to help with the baby, while you schedule most of your clients during those hours?

Just some thoughts.

I'm kinda planning on swapping childcare with a couple other doulas I know. One has a 12 month old and the other is in the planning stages still. My two best friends (a lesbian couple) work from home and have expressed interest in helping me watch the baby while I am with clients. Also, my two other good friends (a gay couple) are moving to my area 1) for better work and 2) to be involved in my family life as my "good male influences" ie uncle figures. I intend to put them to work, too

I don't think my kid needs to be with me 24/7, unlike probobly most on this BB. I do think I am the most important person in my child's life, but not the only important one. I really do/will have a village to help me raise my kids. I was a preschool teacher/director for 7 years and I really enjoyed helping those parents raise their kids. The more (trustworthy, caring, enlightened) people that love my child and are involved in our lives on a permanent basis, tthe more my child will be loved and enjoy people. I think this is what extended family used to be like (in good scenarios) and I want to recreate that sense of community. In no way will I abdicate my responsibility as The Primary Parent (the only legal parent, btw), but I think my child will thrive with a variety of loving adults/family members taking care of him/her, too. Just my thoughts.

Surround yourself with people who love your child and utilize their caring and skills to the benefit of your family.

Member posted 05-24-2001 10:13 AM
I bring Isaiah to work with me Mon-Fri. I work as an office manager at a general contracting company. There is one catch though, it's my father's company at his home, so I'm lucky enough to have a loving grandma to play with Isaiah when I need to get some work done.
There are times when she isn't here and the phones are ringing and papers calling and that is when it get's tough. I usually just put him in the sling and walk around, or put him in his bouncy seat with a cloth diaper (his favorite toy ) For naptime, I have a special area set up and lay down and nurse him to sleep because that always works!

Definitely set up a special spot for him to sleep that is pretty quiet, with some background noise, like lullabies or music playing on a radio, and make it comfy for you too!

(I just read your post again and it basically sounds like you are doing what I just mentioned, so I'll move on.)

About the clinginess, don't succumb to the idea that he will become clingy! It does become tough when he wants to be held though, and you have work to do.

Ok, so I don't have any great words of wisdom, but I do have some encouragement! It's great that you're bringing your baby with you and doing something you love. Everything will fall into place soon and you will be so happy that you don't have to leave him in daycare or something like it! I know it isn't too 'AP' but Isaiah loves his exersaucer thing! You could just set him in it next to you while you're working with someone. Maybe it would occupy him for the few minutes that you need.


Moderator posted 05-28-2001 08:17 PM
I am a practicing dentist and have brought my now 5 yo dd to work with me since she was 11 months, and now that she's in Montessori school, I also bring my 6 month old twins. DD is also there after school for an hour or so.
I have a room (used to be the doctor's office, my "desk" is the break room table!) dedicated to the babies. It has a toddler bed, fish tank, books, music, toys, mats, separate rest room and entrance, etc. I also have a nanny there (same one, for 4 years now!) who has the same AP ideas I do, mostly. She holds a baby, rocks, sings, entertains. Many times I came in to play and found them both cuddled up, asleep under a blankie. My dd would not sleep unless she was in arms, and the nanny loved that. She would hold her all day when dd wanted that.

I nursed dd exclusively for 12 months, then until she was self-weaned at 3. I am exclusively nursing the twins, as well. This situation works ideally for that. (Here's a clue; numbing doesn't really usually take 10 minutes to soak in, I'm in the back playing or nursing! ). I have some frozen milk in case I'm in a surgery and can't get away, but we've never had to use it.

I have found that it is absolutely essential to have a staff member (yes, the "company" pays her salary just like any other staff member, I can address the legalities/accounting if you're interested) devoted only to my babies. When they're both napping, she also does some filing, light clerical, simple lab work, etc. I just found that it's not fair to the other staff to be babysitters, and it's not fair to the baby to just be "squeezed in" with whoever's around to play. They deserve undivided attention. My staff is very loving and usually can't wait to cuddle a baby, when it's not expected of them and they have someone whose responsibility it is to pass off to.

It really is the best of both worlds, and has many unseen benefits. My patients can hardly wait to visit the babies, love to see their growth, etc. We've had some sweaters knitted, cookies baked, cards sent; one retired seamstress just customized a gorgeous satin baptism suit for my little guy. It gives you something immediately in common with people, and always something to talk about. Plus, I think patients feel a difference in the atmosphere; "it can't be that bad, there are *children* on the premises", LOL! .

It's so neat to hear of other mommas doing this! I'm really tired, just got back in town, so I apologize for the incoherencies. I hope to hear more stories, and Chiromom, if there are any details you'd be more interested in, I'd love to talk more about it.

Member posted 05-29-2001 08:29 AM
I bring my one and three year old kids with me.I am a personal gardener and currently i have just two accounts.I work about 15 hours a week.I'm pretty lucky because i can set my hours and the kids are free to run around while i work.I try to do some on the weekends too so that my dh can watch them and i can get more done.I'm learning accounting and bookkeeping as well so that i can do that at home.It isn't easy but it is sooo rewarding to have my kids with me and not some stranger.Yay to us working moms!

Member posted 05-29-2001 11:09 AM
I am in property management/office manager, my 8 year old went to work with me in my office from 6 weeks on......he is the most independent person and at ease in corporate/school/public situations. We also have a catch, its a family business my grandfather started, so we have some pull. My twins now 19 months old, are welcome also, however; it is not that practical. I have downsized my job and salary and work primarily from home. It can be done, just be creative, remember the "men" are sometimes late from golf or playing raquet ball or coffee, we just don't need to publicize we were completing a nursing break--for all they need to know we were detained by a client--the most important clients our kids! Pioneers used to work with kids, canned, plowed fields, ran stores etc. Why can't we?

Member posted 07-18-2001 02:45 PM
I had lost this thread some time ago and found it today! Smilemomma, thanks for all the imput. It sounds like your situation is pretty similar to mine. I am facing the dilema of what to do when school starts up again and my summer *au pair* and gramma sitting set ups must come to an end. I really like the idea of an in office nanny, but don't have someone specific in mind. How did you find this saint? Finances are also an issue as I am newly in practice and overhead is a big concern. My child is a priority financially, but there are practical limits. Anyway...I hope someone sees this post and gets it going again.

Member posted 07-18-2001 06:22 PM
I too am a practicing chiropractor! My ds is 6 months old and has been coming to the office with me since he was 4 months old. I only adjust two half days (dh is also a chiro) but I do paperwork and other stuff all throughout the week. It is working out great!
I have set up a separate place for him to sleep,play and be changed. I often put him in the receiving area and let the practice members play with him while I adjust. During busy times I have a nanny at the office to care for him like smilemomma. I get a lot done during those times and the people in the practice know what times I promptly start and finish. If he needs to nurse I will often do it where everyone can see me so they are happy to wait a few minutes. I try to do the back office stuff and phone calls when the office is closed so I can do it at baby pace. We play, nurse, walk, sling and work without the stress of needing to attend to people waiting.

Is your CA child friendly? Mine will hold ds, play with him and pass him to people in the receiving room throughout the day! I recc. traing your CA to do almost everything you can so you can focus on adjusting!

My nanny is basically a friend in her 50s who is into AP. Since we don't have family nearby we consider her his grandma! It is wonderful for ds to be around her energy. I am sure you can find a cool caregiver to help you out in the office. She isn't cheap but it does free me up to make money. Some of my friends who have help at their practices use younger women, college students and pay them a bit less because they care for the baby when it isn't busy, nurse the baby and let the caregiver study or whatever.

Sorry, if this is a little unconstructed but I am just letting the ideas roll! Basically, I recc. having help when you need to be really focused new people exams, health talks, busy adjusting times etc. And the rest of the time just include him into the flow.

Best of luck!

Member posted 07-22-2001 06:09 AM
I'm happy to hear from you! We used to pass DS around to patients, staff, etc but it is becoming impossibly busy since I cluster block patient times in order to minimize overall time spend in office. My staff is always willing to help out, but when I am that busy, so are they. I have had a 14 yo mothers helper over the summer, but when school starts, I'm in trouble. I am looking for a retiree or someone to come in, but live in a very very small community so choices are quite limited. We (dh and I)bring him with to Health care class, etc and just pass him around and take turns holding him. I just want him to be used to being in the office and used to normal function there so I don't want to send him somewhere to be watched. My staff doesn't get this, but luckily, I am the boss

I'd love to hear from you again MaryM
(My name is Mary too!)

Member posted 07-23-2001 12:16 AM
I'll tell you how I did it. I got pregnant four months after one of my law partners did. She didn't bring her baby to work right after even though we had talked about on-site day care as one of our goals when we started the Firm. Nine days after my baby was born, I showed up at work, found an empty office and sat my mom down with my newborn daughter. My mom was paid minimum wage to hold her very own grandbaby. The following week, I convinced my law partner to bring her 4 month old baby along with the aunt that was watching him at home. We paid her minimum wage to watch her grandnephew. Neither women wanted that as a full time job, and we knew that starting out, so we found a wonderful woman from Nicaragua. We added furniture, toys, supplies, etc. and moved the nursery into the biggest office in our Firm-the conference room! Ha. The both kids loved it. I got to nurse my baby all day, and since my husband is another of the owners of the Firm, he got to enjoy her too. It sounds perfect and ideal but it wasn’t. Their first Nanny left after only one year and it took almost another year to find a suitable replacement. Meanwhile, the two babies went through way too many candidates. Their second caregiver was perfect too. We paid her way more than minimum wage but she was an experienced day care teacher and day care director. She stayed a year and but is currently out on maternity leave. I don’t know what we will do when she has her baby as the policy has been that the day care is open to all employees of the firm, except the day care director. The woman who has replaced her is good, but ...

I guess my advice is to get someone to help you at least part-time. I have full time help, but I found myself many many times in the day care. This meant that I had to work at night to make up for lost time. (Which is why I am now on the Mothering Boards at 2:10 a.m.)

I wouldn’t change the arrangement for anything. I know that my Firm could be wildly more financially successful than it is. We just gave up an offer to merge with the largest law firm in the world. They were going to pay each of the founding members of the Firm $350,000 to $800,000 per year. We said no, mainly because we would have had to give up our on-site day care.

Good luck. I hope it works as well for you as it has for me. My dd is now 3 and 1/2 and loves to go to work with us because she can be with both her mommy and daddy and play with Anel, if they get too busy.

Member posted 07-23-2001 07:32 AM
I tried. Didn't work. So I just quit last week. Still have to work part time for a couple months though.
[This message has been edited by summermom (edited 07-23-2001).]

Member posted 07-23-2001 08:57 AM
I don't have an ideal situation but we are working it out. I am an actor/director and my jobs are constantly changing so it is always a challenge, not only do I need daycare, but I often need it at night. Dh is an actor too, and also works as a carpenter. I did all sorts of things to supplement our income but when dd was born I pretty much stopped except for theater stuff. We had a terrific arrangement last year for awhile where my dh and I were both working in the same building for a really nice theater. It was soundproof too, so we felt very safe bringing the baby backstage. It was a great experience for her. Actors are such creative people and loved playing with her. Directing jobs are shorter time commitment, so I have been generating more of that, and directing children's theater is so rewarding, and a very child friendly atmosphere. It was a lot easier to bring her along before she was mobile, now it is definitely a challenge.
I really miss working - and am considering going back part time. I don't regret a single instant of time spent with my daughter and when I start to feel panicky about money or feeling worthless I really have to step back and acknowledge the work ethic that has been imprinted on my brain and try to get around it. WORK WORK WORK! We have been so conditioned! At least in my blue collar upbringing we were.

Ruth - I really admire your sacrifice regarding turning down the merger. I hope that company knows why you turned them down. It is just crazy that huge corporations can't get the picture. So companies like yours are encouraging.I'd love to hear a little more about how you feel about your sacrifice.

For years we have lived in the city, right in the middle of things, in a really cheap rented apt., four floors up on a busy street, no parking, no laundry, no elevator, but an easy commute anywhere we wanted. But with the little one only getting bigger, we can't do laundry, I can barely grocery shop. Well I can, but I can't get them upstairs. Add in a blizzard or two, sometime 2to 3 blocks of walking from parking spot to apt... well we bought a house by my MOM! She does NOT live in the city, but she loves my dd and she has no problems watching her while we are working in the evenings. We are terrified to not be right in the middle of everything anymore. But our dd has a yard and a great house and a ton of family nearby. That was my sacrifice. I only hope it works out.

GB's Mom
Member posted 07-23-2001 11:54 AM
My DH and I work together and just happen to have the world’s most understanding boss, who let’s us bring our DS to work with us. I took a 3 month leave and then we’ve been bringing him here ever since: he’ll be 16 months in two days. It’s been a wonderful and yet very difficult time, as there have been some struggles and lots of adjusting, but mostly it’s a blessing that we are able to do what we do. Let’s see . . .

Up until he was about 10 months old, things were great, and pretty easy. DH and I would take turns working and playing with him and I could nurse on demand (still do) and nurse to sleep. Then from 10 to 13 months he was going through so many developmental changes, that things were more of a struggle. I personally struggled a lot, wondering if this was the right enviroment for him. We went through a lot of separation anxiety when DS wanted me, but DH had to take him so I could work. I’m not one to let him cry . Those were stressful days but we worked through them the best we could. We also joined GYMBOREE so that DS could get out of the office and have a change of scenary for a little while each day. Plus, one of us always goes on a walk each day. During the 10-13 month stage we tried one of us staying home in the morning with him and one of us coming to work and then making up our hours in the evening, but my boss didn’t like it and told us to bring DS back. The upstairs of the builing was vacant and he let us turn it into a giant playroom. We also started the search for “Mary Poppins” to come in and play with DS in the afternoon. We felt that at 14 months all he wanted to do was play, and having someone else here would be really helpful. Hiring someone was a horrible experience and we fired the first girl after week. Then we found our angel. BUT . . . it took DS 5 weeks to be comfortable playing alone with her. They still play a lot in our offices, but will go upstairs or outside for up to an hour. Basically, she’s his playmate. But if he’s tired, not feeling well, or hungry, it’s ALL mommie or daddy. I guess I wouldn’t want him relying on anyone else to meet his needs anyway.

My advice would be to rethink hiring someone for just the summer. This is someone that your DD will come to trust and enjoy and to build a very important relationship with. Why not find someone who is not going to be temporary? It will probably take her several months to really fell comfortable with the “mommy’s helper” and if she leaves as soon as she’s achieved that comfort, it could be confusing and difficult for her to bond with someone else.

Sorry that this is so long! We’ve just been doing it for a while and have had so many ups and down -- but mostly ups. It is a blessing. Good luck to you. You’re probably entering a difficult few months, but IT WILL PASS so hang in there. Your DD is where she should be -- with her mom!

Member posted 07-23-2001 07:50 PM
What a lucky child to have two parents in acting. I try really hard to get my daughter involved in creative things like painting, singing, dancing, etc. She doesn’t watch TV so I find myself having to entertain and play with her a lot.

We were older parents (36 and 38) when we had our baby, so we also had been conditioned by the work ethic that says WORK WORK WORK! Like you, I really miss working, after all I have been doing it 8 hours a day 5 days a week 52 weeks a year for over 20 years! So, it is hard when I spend more than my usual time with my baby. I am chilling out more, but for example, I would NEVER take an extra day for myself on out of town trips -- now, I take all the weekend and maybe even Friday and Monday.

Thank you for your support in our decision to turn down the merger. If anybody told me 12 years ago when I got out of school that I would be telling this firm “NO WAY,” I would have thought they were crazy. I feel really bad about the money. Something in the back of my mind still tells me that I still want to be FILTHY RICH one day, but right now there is so much satisfaction from my dd that I forget that thought quick. Also, part of why I wanted to be rich was so that I could help my family out of extreme poverty and I am doing that little by little. My sister and her husband work with me, all of our nieces enjoy Take Our Daughter to Work every year, we employ as summer help all of our grown nephews and nieces. My mom got paid minimum wage to hold her newborn granddaughter for 6 weeks. ETC. We also have poor kids that are neighbors, relatives, friends as interns every summer and require them to study for the college entrance exams, while they are getting paid! So, I try to remember that when I wonder why we have the smallest house in the neighborhood, why my friends have two houses and four cars, and we only have one 1993 car.

You are doing the right thing by keeping your dd near her grandmother and getting her a big yard and a great house. I know it will work out for you. We did the same and our commute is horrible, but we changed our hours to avoid rush hour. Yes, that has meant less control of the company we started almost 10 years ago, but our daughter will only be little once, so will yours.

Remember also, that no situation is ideal. Women have always worked and most have worked with their babies along side of them. It is only in this recently wierd corporate world of ours that things have changed. I don't know if the big law firm knew why we turned them down, but I do everything I can to publicize my on-site day care to everybody.

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