help needed dealing with three year old boy and five year old girl i babysit (long) - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-30-2006, 04:31 PM - Thread Starter
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didnt know where to post this either in the discipline forum or here but since it seems more like a discpline post and more suited for it ill post it here. (also i didnt know what to title it as as well sorry if it was misleading.

Im a babysitter for two kids E(age 3 boy, name changed for confiendiality purposes) AND Izzy(age 5 girl, name changed for confidentiality purposes ) ive been their babysitter for almost three months now and the parents and I have gotten along GREAT the parents are soo good to me and i really have told them how much I apprecite them giving me the job after how hard it has been to search for people who would not judge me by my gender( im a guy, if you were wondering that check my sig ) also they pretty much have become like family friends to me, and both the kids and I have bonded alot, espeically me and izzy much like a big brother little sister type of bond, and with evan very much like a big big brother little brother bond. this is because i dont just go there and just sit and watch tv, i play with them (safe age approprite games of course like arts and crafts, going to the park and playing chase etc.) and when it comes to disciplining them i always listen to them and have them talk things out and use a firm but understanding voice, and also holding them gently and talking to them. Pretty much im a very firm beliver in AP and Attachment caregiving because im a person who enjoys working with children and i got into this feild knowing that i cant just sit on my butt and watch tv if and think i was gonna be considered a good sitter/nanny, becasue people who truly care about and wish to be a postive role model in their lives takes an active role by playing with them, listening to them, as well as theri families etc. yet there is alot i got to learn about AP and AC since what i do know is pretty basic.

ive worked with kids as a preschool teacher and a nanny/sitter before and I am currently a child develppment student at my college and my careeer goal is tobecome a kinergarten teacher, and I can say for a fact that this is the best family (one of two) that ive been with so far, yet i know with all the expdrince i ahve that not every child IMHO is the same, and i got much to learn.

so far the kids and I have gotten along great, the usual ups and downs here that go along with working with a five and three year old BUT yesterday and a few days before things got a bit rocky. what has happend is that i have started to come later like around 8pm, as the parents requested which is perfectly okay with me because it allows their dad or mom to spend time with them, since dad usually works late and mom needs a break , and i always belive that the parents need to spend time with their kids, i mean they both adore them (izzy especially adores her dad) . , yet now days sometimes bella does this. where she goes crying when she sees me and runs to her room, and dad or mom goes and comforts her. and then its all better. E would start to do that recently as well.

i thgoht this would be only a once a week thing or just a rare occurance that occured once or twice but it seems that recently when i come over Izzy would do this or E would as well, OR they both would cry or get mad at me.

heres what happend Sunday.

E was difficult yesterday , he was going LEAVE ME ALONE LEAVE ME ALONE, (he does this whenever he gets tired ) even when i just went to sit near by him. hes usually quite tired by like 8pm or so since he goes to bed at like 9 so its no suprise but man oh man i mean he tried to sleep on the floor and thats not okay since well he might get tripped over and since i gotta pick him up and put him in bed.

even tho i know hes just acting like his usual three year old self whenever he says "I dont lke you i like grandma paulette and jack" when hes just saying im sooo tired and I miss grandma or grandpa( which both of them did) and i had a long day. pretty much when he does that i be as calm as possilbe and give him as much space as well. yet it is heartwrenching to hear that especially no matter how muc you understand.

(repeat of what I said before but with more info) Izzy has been the same way kinda, she runs to her room crying saying "no i dont want you your a jerk etc." same deal shes tired or had a long day, (i usually get there now days at 8 or so) but she on the other hand after talking with dad or so understands that mom and dad will be back and that i do love her and then comes to me and gives me a big hug, then after that wont let me go

aye phases you know they will blow over but when they are going thorugh them you alsoi (ie parents, babysitters, or anyone who is directly contact with them ) go through them with them, in trying to help them.

even tho ive sat for them for a total of 3 months so far it seems like forever which is whY i sometmes get suprised when they do that but then i guess i gotta reasses myself and say WOAH it is their bed time and you know that they dont hate you, they are just tired .(please do correct me if im wrong)

so hwat im wondering is does it seem like i did anyting wrong? i mean i know that if i did the parents wouldnt want me back, and would tell me and i know that if i was being a bad sitter that bella would let me know or E would REALLY let me know and the


yet either way im just SOO glad that their parents are soo understanding tho i always feel i have done something wrong but then i ahve to say to myself, would she (isablella) really come up to me and hug me and stick by me IF she hated me? (shes five btw)
and if evan really hated me why then would he allow me to pick him up or so?

thing that ive seen with three year olds like evan and correct me if im wrong, is that they are in a testing phase and need space but bounadires and just a firm voice to let them know you are serious but not being mean. in order to convey feelings?

bottom line is am i wrong? am I a bad sitter? how should I handle this? I can feel that they know that I love them like a big brother or like family but how do I still convey that to E when he goes goes into a tantrum, and how do i get him to listen to me?


any help is greatly apprecited.
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Old 05-30-2006, 06:29 PM
 
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I'm having trouble following your post, but I'll try to help.

I do in home-child-care, have been a nanny, and have my own 2 as well.

It sounds as if this might be a problem with transitions. Many pre-school children are VERY senseitve to even the smallest changes in their routines. Mom and Dad spending more time with them may have them dissoriented and then when you come its a whole `nother change and if they are tired they simply cannot handle it and lash out at you.

Have you asked them why they act this way? A five year-old may be able to tell you why she is upset. And you can always tell her what you see and how it makes you feel. She may appreciate a chance to express her feelings in a non-confrontational setting. The 3 y.o. can join in too, because it seems that he may be imitating his sis to some extent. A little role playing with some toys may help work things out too.

In addition to your ECE studies at school, wht have you read in the way of gentle discipline books so far? I know the child development classses i took tended to be focused on theories of developmental stages and not much on how to interact positively with actual children. There is a great list of books at the top of this forum. i especially like "how to talk so kids will listen, etc..." Because it has pictures!

Sounds like you are a pretty good "manny".

Mom to three 14 y.o. rock star grrl, 5 y.o. knight in spazzy armour and baby Juniper, born still @39 weeks 4 days 2-3-10 .
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Old 05-30-2006, 07:04 PM
 
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I like the pp's advice and will only add that perhaps you should discuss it with the parents. They will have a more holistic understanding of the context of the behaviour.

Learning NVC (non-violent communication) techniques may also help you communicate with empathy in times of stress - helping to reduce tension rather than fuel it.

Good luck! Lucky parents having a caring babysitter like you!
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Old 05-30-2006, 07:08 PM
 
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Hmmm, so if I am understanding things correctly, you get there at 8pm, just about in time to put them to bed? If so, that sounds like a recipe for transition difficulties cubed: mom and dad are leaving, manny just got in, and its time to go to bed. Have I got this right?
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Old 05-31-2006, 01:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BellinghamCrunchie
Hmmm, so if I am understanding things correctly, you get there at 8pm, just about in time to put them to bed? If so, that sounds like a recipe for transition difficulties cubed: mom and dad are leaving, manny just got in, and its time to go to bed. Have I got this right?
Kinda, yet E has had no trouble with going to bed usually he goes to sleep at around 9 and the thing with him is when he says dont bother me i dont do that. but there are times when if hes watching tv just before hes about to go to sleep, hes jumping here and there, and when i try to tell him its not okay to do that he gets angry. I used to until sunday (well a month or two ago lol) be able to put my hand on his leg (or if he would flinch away and yell no i would just be there near him ) and tell him gently in a firm, and loving medium tone:

" E I can see that you are tired, and can see that because you are lying down, and you are rubbing your eyes, and leave me alone, when i tried to ask you to please get up. I will walk away and not bother you, however i can not let you jump off the sofa like that, becasue it is very dangerous.

i then ask him "did you understand what i said E"? (he would say hmm hmm)

Then i would say great and put my arms out, asking for a hug. and he would come and sit on my lap and curl up in my arms. then i would conclude by saying:

"It is okay to get angry when someone is not listning to what you want E, but when someone like me or mommy or daddy or Izzy is trying to tell you someting that is not okay to do then you need to listen to them if not you might hurt your body and thats not okay is it? (he would shake his head no)

then i would say? "i really like how your lisnteing to my words." and would give him a hug and a kiss and he would return that.


Izzy on the other hand usually sleeps late, and thankfully during this time me and her get a chance to talk things over and bond and were back to our old selves, and even when mom or dad come home just to pick something up she doesnt change.
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Old 05-31-2006, 02:04 AM
 
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One reason they are angry is that you've changed from a "let's do fun things during the day" friend to a "Hi! I'm here when you are tired to put you to bed" friend. That's a big change. And it also disrupts their former schedule of who puts them to bed. This is going to take a while to sink in and for them to become comfortable with your new role. I'd give it some time and focus on doing relaxing things with them but setting up a routine to follow from when you get there until bedtime. (like if they are watching a show, they can watch until 8:30 and then you can play a quiet game or two, and then brush teeth and then they get into bed and you read stories for another 15 minutes before it's time to sleep.) That way they can adjust to the new routine and know what to expect from you during this time.

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Old 05-31-2006, 10:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PikkuMyy
One reason they are angry is that you've changed from a "let's do fun things during the day" friend to a "Hi! I'm here when you are tired to put you to bed" friend. That's a big change. And it also disrupts their former schedule of who puts them to bed. This is going to take a while to sink in and for them to become comfortable with your new role. I'd give it some time and focus on doing relaxing things with them but setting up a routine to follow from when you get there until bedtime. (like if they are watching a show, they can watch until 8:30 and then you can play a quiet game or two, and then brush teeth and then they get into bed and you read stories for another 15 minutes before it's time to sleep.) That way they can adjust to the new routine and know what to expect from you during this time.
true again, yet the thing is i sometimes have babysat(once so far) from 2:30-2am, and from 5:30 -2am etc. this is a new one.

im also lenienat on bed time with izzy and the mom and dad undersatadn that unless its a school day, mostly cause she goes to bed late (latest 11) E goes to bed early tho, like at arlund 9. yet the thing that gets to me is that these days ive been more focusing on comforting them due to the change and due to Izzy having a string of bad days(ballet lessons not going so well, getting hurt on the jungle gym, all this happend before i came btw) and since grandma comes and goes more often as well, and they miss her as well, which is totally understandable .
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Old 05-31-2006, 10:19 PM - Thread Starter
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[QUOTE=sadkitty]I'm having trouble following your post, but I'll try to help.

I do in home-child-care, have been a nanny, and have my own 2 as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sadkitty
It sounds as if this might be a problem with transitions. Many pre-school children are VERY senseitve to even the smallest changes in their routines. Mom and Dad spending more time with them may have them dissoriented and then when you come its a whole `nother change and if they are tired they simply cannot handle it and lash out at you.
yep i kinda sensed it like that but also because it was for some odd reason both of them had a long day. and because during this time they were seeing grandma(grandma moved back to CA) often and when they left would miss her much like they would miss me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sadkitty
Have you asked them why they act this way? A five year-old may be able to tell you why she is upset. And you can always tell her what you see and how it makes you feel. She may appreciate a chance to express her feelings in a non-confrontational setting. The 3 y.o. can join in too, because it seems that he may be imitating his sis to some extent. A little role playing with some toys may help work things out too.
yep
parents told me a head of time after coming in but then her and I had a talk, i think if it happens again ill also turn the tv off and then get both of them in volved that way ( since E goes to sleep SOO early)

Hmm toys and role playing good idea!! ill remember that one

Also its mostly during night time ie bed, before (as i said in my post, no problem if you didnt catch it as it was long even i had to go back and read what i said :l) like at 5 or so they are totally diffrent, well E is, hes tottaly jumpy excited usual three year old self, just when he starts to get into his tired phas which i usually do,its just the litttle things such as trying to pick him up when hes sleeping to put him in his bed, and how he yells out LEAVE ME ALONE and swings at me, (with his eyes closed yet hes still a good shot yowza !!) is when im like im sorry im sorry hon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sadkitty
In addition to your ECE studies at school, wht have you read in the way of gentle discipline books so far? I know the child development classses i took tended to be focused on theories of developmental stages and not much on how to interact positively with actual children. There is a great list of books at the top of this forum. i especially like "how to talk so kids will listen, etc..." Because it has pictures!
not many books, the school i go to (soon to be went to) does alot of putting theory into practive so ive mostly had lab experinces (the Child development depart ment had a preschool on site where practicums were held it was called "the lab" but was a PERFECT example of a model preschool) as well as discussions with my professor on those topics, they worked alot, but my main weakness is my delivery, my tone of voice, and non-verbal communication, and thats due to the fact that since it has been a few months or a year since ive worked iwth 3 year olds more one on one so its gotten rusty, so its like im back to square one, Chalk one up to good ol fashioned gender discrimination from my staff at child care centers which in turn forced me to quit :eyeroll

as for that book. Im very glad you mentioned it i forgot all about it!! I LOVE YOU. i gotta give it to their mom as well. man that lady has got some nerves of steel, as does their dad. Im just a HUGE softie/ just give in type person, i do as well, and i gained it from not only them but from dealing with other harsh conditions growing up, and im glad i get to use it in place where its needed the most cause it allows me to really listen, of which im suprised some teachers these days don't it makes me question sometimes, why did you want to become a teacher of young children then anyway?


it also reminds me of the books that Izzy has which i might be able to use with E. they are a series of books, age appropriate kid friendly etc. one of them is entitled, lets talk about whining or something like that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sadkitty
Sounds like you are a pretty good "manny".
gratzie. im far from beeing good tho, I try
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