Advice re childminder

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, May 24, 2011.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    I have a slightly delicate situation with a childminder. As I mentioned, she is quite punitive - constantly scolding her own children and J when she looks after him. She is a perfectly nice person and J has known her since he was a baby and gets on with her two children. So it's not a relationship I want to fracture. However, I do want to say something to her about her methods in relation to J's temperament and hyperactivity. The problem is that she is VERY sensitive to criticism. I once asked J - when he was 3 - what he had had for lunch at this childminder's. "Sugar!" he replied. I sent her a text to say that J had told me he had had sugar for lunch, thinking it would make her laugh, and she sent back an angry message along the lines of "How can you think I would give a child sugar for lunch?"... I am trying to cut down on additives for J and recently asked her if she would not give him the biscuits, etc, that she gives her children and him and again she took this rather amiss and I had to be very conciliatory and diplomatic to unruffle her feathers. So I am naturally fearful that if I ask her this, she is going to take umbrage, thinking that I am criticising her child-rearing methods... Eggshells! She doesn't, as is common, really know anything about hyperactivity or think that J has a particular problem. Should I give her some literature to read? How can I frame my request? Any ideas gratefully received...
  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    If you're constantly having to unruffle her feathers, I'd be checking around for someone better suited to his needs. She's unlikely to change her methods.
  3. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Ah, HaoZi... straight to the heart of the matter! Yes, I guess she probably won't change. But to be honest I'd be hard pushed to find anything much different... as I say, people here are almost always very strict with children. I should move to Spain :)
  4. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    I think I would tell the babysitter you are trying to reduce food additives to see how it affects his behavior and send a replacement snack for your son. Be somewhat apologetic about the extra work for her but tell her you just need to see if it will work. Then, work on your son so he knows he is not supposed to eat her snacks, but can have this one instead. You will have to make his replacement so tempting that he won't mind not having hers.

    If his behavior is challenging for her, she might be motivated to see what happens.

    I had to ruffle some feathers in my own house to get husband on board with our diet change. The results have convinced him. If additives are a problem for your child, maybe the babysitter will be convinced by the results.
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    How does J feel about the situation? That is another factor to consider... because the difficulty of "shifting" to a different situation may bring more problems than it solves (a common ADHD problem). If he really likes it there, you're better off trying to work around the "edges" than to move him.

    Try being more practical than totally honest in your dealings with others like this... the food situation? Don't relate it to being hyperactive... rather, "the doctor has suggested that J may have some food sensitivities, and would like us to try XXX - I'll provide alternatives so you don't have to go to any trouble... etc." (sometimes even if the "doctor" is "doctor Mom")

    I couldn't have milk as a kid - but used to go after school to friends' houses, neighbors' houses, etc. until Mom got home. She made a habit of "stocking" the freezers of my contact points with non-dairy after-school snacks... It worked better than the other two alternatives (going hungry, or eating milk products)! And the other families really respected that this stuff belonged to "me" and didn't eat it up, either.
  6. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I agree with InsaneCdn's approach. Maybe taking it to an even more personal level of, ""the doctor has suggested that J may have some food sensitivities, and would like us to try XXX. I hate to add extra trouble for you so I'd like to provide the food items each day/week. Do you have any suggestions of foods/snacks I can add to this list? Would you be able to tell me in a weeks time (or two) if you notice any changes, positive or negative, in J's behaviour?"

    Maybe address the fact that maybe HER kids would want what J is getting? How can the two of you work together to make sure that is not an issue? Are you willing to provide enough of the snack for all the kids? Would she be willing to sit down and help you come up with some recipies for meals that you can use at home and maybe she would be willing to make while J is there?

    I would address it as, "I have a challenge that I would like you to help me with. J's doctor has suggested that we cut back on YYY, and add more XXX to his diet. I think I have a start with this list (list of do's and don'Tourette's Syndrome) but wondering if you can help me add to it. Do you have ideas of foods we can try that will fit into the new diet? How will this interfer with while he is here at your home? Can I help by providing snacks that fit in this list for all the kids? Would you be willing to have foods at meal time that will work?" "We should know in a couple of weeks if this new diet is helping him. He should feel better and be easier to be around........"

    I hope she is willing - I know I took caffene out of the house because one of difficult child's friends would overdo it. I also try to watch what is out and available when he is over.