21 answers

Hindsight About Childcare Decision

I placed my daughter in a small in-home licensed daycare when she was four months old. I want to share my experience because I want others to know that it is OK to follow your gut when it comes to the care of your children.

This is my first child so I am learning as I go. My first red flag should have been that the lady talked too much and gave too many details about non-important things. As time went on, I recognized that she was doing this because she was basically lying about the care she provided.

She said she was into babywearing and didn't believe in letting babies cry it out. (actually illegal to for a childcare provider to do this). I picked my daughter up on several occassions where she was in the back room in the playpen crying alone.

My daughter frantically crawled to me or was always crying when I picked her up there before she could crawl.

The final straw was when I dropped her off and the lady had her fireplace on with no barrier. Just prior to this, my daughter choked on a woodchip. These things happen but I got four different stories about her response. The final story being that she performed back blows!

I was going to accomodate my work schedule to stay at home because I was so worried every day about my daughter. It was a "gut feeling" from the start that I ignored for five months. Luckily she is safe and happy now.

I ended up just pulling her without notice and found another provider. It is so differnt. No nagging feelings or worries throughout the day. My daughter is happy, well rested and fed when I pick her up.

There are a lot of details that I am leaving out. I worry about the kids that continue in this person's care. I don't know how to let that go. Maybe she just wasn't for us and is fine with the others but I am not so sure (gut feeling again).

Please always go with your instincts when it comes to childcare providers. I don't see how you could go wrong.

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I am editing because I have no idea how to add what else has happened. You all supported me in my decision to report (I did that immediately after the incident) but I followed up with the Department of Early Learning (Washington) and could not believe the response I got:
I was told that “_____ said that was the only time she had the fireplace on and I talked to all the other parents and they reported the same.” The licenser said she had just started working on the referral and asked how my daughter was doing in her new childcare. I told her my daughter’s behavior has changed completely. She is happy, well-rested and fed when I pick her up (as opposed to crying, exhausted and hungry). The licenser then said, "well ____ must not have been a good fit for you then?" I said "no, she wasn't taking care of my baby." She then said that she interviewed all the other parents in the daycare "who all spoke highly of her so she has to take that into consideration in her investigation."I was shocked.
First, _____ lied when she said that was the only time she ever used the fireplace when children were around because when I confronted her, she told me she used it in the mornings as children were arriving and that she usually "put things in fronth of it so the kids wouldn't be able to get to it."
Also, there were only three other kids there when I pulled my daughter: one was a relative, the other was an infant who has only been there since January, and the other was a two year old who has been there since he was an infant. Maybe those other parents don't have a clue? I am so angry that I am filing a complaint with my state's ombudsmans office. The level of incompetence on behalf of this person is scary.

More Answers


I've worked with parents & familes for more than 16 years as a preschool teacher, Nanny & now a parents coach, and your advise is the same I ALWAYS give parents, trust your instincts!!!

I honestly believe Mom's have the Mama instinct, so if it's yelling at you, listen.

Thanks for sharing.

R. Magby

2 moms found this helpful

I absolutely agree with you. Any time you hafta let your child go (daycare, school, sleep-overs, driver's license, college, marriage...) it is scary and you can almost always trust your gut.

We were moving and needed to switch day cares for our 2 yr old. We interviewed someone in our new neighborhood. Like your story, she kept talking about trivial stuff, leading the conversation away from her policies, her approach to child care, her approach to potty training, etc. She just gave me an "oogy" feeling.

My husband and I walked out and I shrugged and giggled and said, "Well, I guess that was a bust." While almost at the same time, he burst out with, "So it looks like we found the place!" I was aghast but he was so convinced I let him override mommy radar.

Long story short, our son was there for just two weeks. Besides her pure laziness...She said it was ridiculous that a 2 yr old wasn't potty trained. We calmly redirected her and said we had a plan and were sticking to it. That last day, we picked him up and were greeted with this: "Your son is defiant. I put him on the potty and he WOULD NOT GO. But I made him sit there and then do you know what he did? He masturbated! That's is just disgusting and defiant." I can feel my heart racing just thinking about this. But all we could do was sweep up our son, race out...I think we left his shoes behind. We never ever went back. To this day, I wonder if she made him sit there was hours in anxiety and confusion. And seriously....2 yr olds cannot masturbate.

1 mom found this helpful

I have to say that stories like yours were our reason to go with a center rather than an individual provider. While it is a bit less personal, there is so much more staff and supervision that something like that is just less likely to happen....
I am sorry for your experience and thank you for sharing!

1 mom found this helpful

You have to always let your instincts lead you, especially where your child is concerned, her health and emotional well being. Being left alone and crying it out is cruel.

1 mom found this helpful

Have you reported this person to your state agency? If you haven't you certainly should. I worked in nursing homes for years and we were inspected at least once a year and any time there was a single concern or complaint (whether it was founded or unfounded the state had to come in an investigate). The investigation is always unannounced which is exactly what this woman needs. If you were friendly with any of the other parents you need to let them know what happened and why your daughter is no longer there. I would want that info as a parent.

1 mom found this helpful

Always listen to your gut when putting your child in someone else's care. If she is licensed, she gets inspected each year by the state. I just got through my years of daycare. My youngest is finally old enough and my oldest is finally old enough to stay home together. One is a teenager who get's paid to watch his brother as part of his allowance. I have had my kids in centers and home based. I had problems with both. Ask for references, check in before you start a daycare unannounced to see the real show, and drop in afterwards unanounced too.

Thank you so much for your helpful input. I believe you are right about trusting your instincts to such places as you had described. It's hard now days to find a place you can trust and even harder because of what ends up on the news...gives in even further to any fears you might be having. Hopefully, people will understand that it's all a matter of trusting your instinct. If something doesn't look right and you feel your child might be in danger...DO NOT hesitate to remove your child immediately or voice your concerns over their safety.

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