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<p>Hello,</p>
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<p>I am actually a sahm at the moment but I need tips for how to encourage my son to stay in the YMCA's childcare program.  He will be 2 in January and I have been home with him since he was born.  I'm also a single mom so he has never had anyone care for him other than me (and occasional visits with my friend or my mom).  I recently joined the y as an attempt to do something for me and I really need this.  But, my ds will not stay in the childcare program.  It started out ok, but it gets worse each time we go, and the last time he only lasted 15 minutes and when someone came to get me I was told he had been crying the whole time and they thought he might throw up from crying so hard :(  What do I do??  It's like he's traumatized by that place now.  He starts crying the second I even think about leaving the room.  Do I just need to give it more time (we've only been there about 5 times in 2 weeks)?  I have tried sneaking away, I have tried telling him I'm leaving but I'll be back, I have tried just leaving even though he's crying. </p>
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<p>I have also been considering getting a job and I will be going back to school in September, but this whole experience with the childcare program has me dreading the thought of putting him in actual daycare - where I won't just be down the hall. </p>
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<p>What do I do???</p>
 

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Are you talking about their actual childcare all-day program or the drop-off program they have while you are working out?<br><br>
As far as adjusting to childcare, I think the providers should take a big role in this. Ultimately, I just trusted in them, promised to be back in the afternoon, and just walked away. It took a few weeks of tears at drop-off time and lots of love from the caregivers, but they were fabulous in helping him adjust. It helped that the kids were the same everyday, so he made friends and got comfort that way as well.<br><br>
For the drop-in childcare, I don't think that's the place to get a kid to adjust to being cared for by another (strange) adult. The providers switch a lot, they don't have the time to get to know intimately your kid's personality and needs, they have to continually adapt to the turnover of kids, they can't spend half an hour getting a child to stop crying when the kid is going to be there for only an hour. I tried to get my kid to adjust to the YMCA childcare and then finally just gave up--me working out wasn't worth it if he was going to be so upset by it, and the providers couldn't handle that level of neediness. I ended up working out when my parents could watch my kid or trading off babysitting with another mom or bringing my kid into the gymnasium area while I ran some laps or stretched.
 

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<p>I think there is a huge difference between drop in childcare at the gym, and a regular childcare that the kid goes to on a regular basis. My son is 1, and I can't imagine trying to get him used to the drop in child care.  It takes weeks to get him acclimated to a new provider.</p>
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<p>Again, my child is younger, and we haave had one bad nanny experience, but what seems to be working for us is this-- I hand him over, nanny tries to engage. If it's just not working, I sit with him for a bit, and try again. I don't leave him when he's crying, but she can normally get him distracted by going outside, putting him in a highchair, or giving him a shiny object. I try so, so, so, very hard not to come back in when I'm out, even if that means leaving my badge at home, or forgetting my lunch. It's not fair to the 3 of us to make him go through the good by process over and over. Nanny comes every weekday, so if I'm working from home, I try to stay out of sight, so as not to disrupt the routine.</p>
 

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<p>I've never tried to leave DD at my gym drop-in childcare. I'm pretty sure it would be a total fail. But, in theory, I think if I wanted to do that, I'd probably take her a few times and just stay with her. Get her used to going and playing, the toys, the idea, the room. Eventually try to leave her for a short period of time--like 15 minutes. My DD does better with gradual transitions, though. </p>
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posting again because I had one idea that might make the transition easier: have you tried using the childcare during whenever the gym's downtime hours are? Perhaps early afternoon or late morning, whenever they usually have a low number of kids. Maybe that would make it less overwhelming to pick a time when fewer kids are around...
 

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<p>It might just be a bad fit for him.  Some settings are perfect for some kids, and bad for others.  My daughter couldn't/wouldn't stay in the gym daycare, but did fine in sunday school.  Looking back, it was consistency.  In Sunday school, it was the same kids every week, and the same teachers.  But, in the gym, it depended on the day and the time.  </p>
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<p>Is there any possibility for you to try him in a home daycare for a few times while you go to the gym?  Obviously, that's not at all ideal... that's why you joined a gym with a daycare, but it might be worth a try.  My other idea is to talk a friend (with a child he knows and likes) into joining with you, and put them both into the daycare together.  He'll feel more comfortable with a friend.</p>
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<p>I'm going to bet that when you do go back to work, or start school, he will adjust perfectly to his daycare setting.  But, the YMCA setting is just not the right place for him, even though, it's probably a great childcare.</p>
 

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<p>It took my dd two weeks to adjust to full time daycare and even then she would cry for about a minute when I left, but she always stopped right after I left and was happy and engaged all day.  The drop in child watch wasn't a big hit until she was almost four and old enough to really understand our talk about choosing to be happy or sad there but still going either way because I needed to work out.  She always told me she chose to be happy and she had a ton of fun.  Sporadic drop in times are tough on kids and it takes a long time to adjust.  If you are committed to working out I think you should do it daily at the same time, say goodbye once then go (you can stay a long time if you need to but don't say goodbye then stay because it is very confusing and don't sneak out because then he will look for you and cry the whole time), and make sure they know to call you if he doesn't calm down quickly.  If after three weeks it isn't working still then I think you might need to consider another way to exercise. </p>
 

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<p>Thank you all for your replies.  I have sort of come to realize that maybe he just is too young/not ready for this type of childcare.  Oh and it's just a drop in thing while I work out.  I guess when he does need to be in daycare the staff will be trained in helping kids through the transition more.  I think I'm going to continue taking him for a few more weeks, but with no pressure, if he's happy good if he's sad we'll leave.  I had a friend watch him this week once so I could do a class and it was very very nice to know I wasn't going to be interrupted at any moment.  I hate always having to ask friends for stuff like this and I was looking forward to having some me-time that didn't involve asking favours.  I wish I knew someone I could use for paid babysitting, I need to work on that! </p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Gillian28</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285698/tips-for-getting-ds-to-stay-in-childcare-program#post_16127765"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a> </div>
<div class="quote-block"> </div>
<div class="quote-block"><strong>I hate always having to ask friends for stuff like this and I was looking forward to having some me-time that didn't involve asking favours.</strong>  I wish I knew someone I could use for paid babysitting, I need to work on that! </div>
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<p>Just to respond to this, could you see if one of your friends would be willing to make a standing appointment to sit for you once or twice per week?  In exchange you can do something for them - be it paying them, watching their kiddos for a bit on different days, doing some cooking for them, something.  That way you'll feel like you're doing something in exchange and not just asking favors, but you'll also have a set time that you can work out.</p>
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<p>And, full time daycare is much different than drop in.  I've never done drop in, but my son has been in daycare for months, and he LOVES it.  There were tears at first, but they lasted only a few minutes - and as he got to know and love his caregivers he didn't care at all about me leaving.  Honestly, I don't know which is worse!  He practically shoves me out of the room when I drop him off - its so sad!  Know going into it that there will be an adjustment period, but he will be in a situation where the caregivers are used to dealing with that (like a pp said, when the kid is only there an hour its hard to get to know them, etc, when the kid is there all day its a totally different ball game), and will be able to help him adjust. </p>
 
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