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Daycare Q says
How long is reasonable for a daycare to deal with an infant who is seeming to have trouble adjusting? My almost 4 month old started daycare 5 weeks ago, when he was 12 weeks old. He’s my 2nd kid, and it’s the same daycare we have used for my 1st since she was 12 weeks. Apparently baby cries a lot during the day and they’re having trouble soothing him. He does not do this at home. The first time we were told that this was on ongoing problem (and not just a few isolated days of fussiness) was last week. Yesterday we got an email from the daycare director basically saying if we don’t fix it soon they’re kicking him out. We have no local family, and a nanny would be a huge financial stress for us. We’re really at a loss, because he doesn’t do this at home, and it feels like we’re not getting all the info we need to troubleshoot this. We’re going to set up a meeting with the daycare director, but in the meantime, I’m wondering, 1. Did our daycare go nuclear overly fast, or would most daycares do this? and 2. Anyone else have experience with this and what did the problem end up being? My guesses so far are a) he wants to nurse (though he is taking his bottles ok) b) maybe the bottles are giving him gas or something? c) he’s tired – he isn’t a great napper and isn’t napping well there, though he is sleeping through the night most nights! (Like I said, at home he’s delightful!) d) hungry – he’s getting 12-16 oz while there, maybe he needs a little more?
Thank you for reading my novel. I just feel really blindsided and at a loss here.
I think that it’s worth talking to his pediatrician. My first thought is that the bottle is not agreeing with him and he’s gassy and hungry and that’s why he is crying all day. All day crying is a very distressed baby not one having trouble settling.
You have more experience than me (only one kid here!) and definitely know your own kid, but my 4 month old would be very hungry with that amount of food. She has minimum of 18 oz at daycare, with an extra 6 oz bottle sent every day just in case she needs more. She’s very small for her age, <10th percentile for weight. But I agree with you that that’s probably not the issue if it’s his same eating habits as at home. My guess is option c; assuming that he takes the same bottles fine at home. Is it formula you’re sending? If baby nurses at home but gets formula at school it may be an insensitivity. I’d also be surprised and annoyed by the lack of communication until right now.
I’m sorry, I would feel blindsided too — the teachers should have told as soon as it became clear it wasn’t just an adjustment issue and worked with you to think through possible options. I think it’s worth raising this with the director.
It seems like you have diagnosed the potential problems pretty well. What about trying to feed her bottles (same amount/type she has at daycare) this weekend to see how she does? If she’s not fussy, that would suggest it’s not bottle/feeding-related.
I think you are right to feel blindsided. If they only told you a week ago and didn’t make it out to be a significant issue then how could you know you needed to try and trouble shoot. Things to try:
1) Can they make his napping area darker / more separate? Add a sound machine if there isn’t already white noise in the nap area. Is it possibly too hot or too cold? If too cold can you add a sleep sack or thicker sleep sack.
2) A different bottle that is supposed to help with gas — maybe Dr. Brown’s if he’ll take that and you’re not already using it.
3) If he’s getting formula and its a standard formula, try a partially hydrolyzed formula (where the proteins are broken down to make them easier to digest and cause less gas). Enfamil Gentlease is one of the common ones.
4) More milk/formula. At 4 months my kiddo moved to 6 ounce bottles and took 4 a day plus nursing twice. She didn’t always finish them all the milk in the bottles at 4 months, but now at 5 months she does every time. This was also true of my first kid.
That doesn’t sound like enough formula/milk (I would send at least three or four 6-oz bottles, or at least extra powder formula they can mix up if he’s still hungry after a smaller bottle), but they should be able to tell you if he still seems hungry after he finishes a bottle. Have they noticed any patterns at all to his crying? When does he appear content, if ever? I agree that if you’re breastfeeding exclusively at home, and doing formula exclusively at daycare, he may not like formula or have a sensitivity to the formula you’re using. Is it possible to send breastmilk to daycare for a few days to see if that helps?
I’m sorry, this sounds so hard! Fwiw I think your daycare went nuclear fast. When my daughter was in the infant-toddler room, there was a baby who screamed all day every day for a year (well, 10 months…the year was cut short by Covid). I’m sure the teachers were miserable but they dealt with it because it’s their job. I was friendly with the baby’s mom and I think the consensus was just that the poor kid had really extreme separation anxiety :/
Daycare Q OP says
Re: it’s their job. Yeah, when we talk with his teachers, they seem more chill about it. It’s the director who really seems to not want to work with us.
Babies scream. It’s what they do. Absent some sort of medical issue, it’s the teachers’ job to deal with it.
I read “it’s what they do” in the Obama “that’s what I do” voice and it made me laugh :)
Oh, I also wanted to say that while 12-16oz is maybe on the less-milk side, it’s not unheard of — my 6mo (six months TODAY omg) only drinks 12oz at daycare (they’ve tried offering her more and she’s not interested). Her brother would easily put down 18oz a day at that age, so there really is huge variation between babies.
Yeah but if your baby is eating way less than normal and is constantly fussy, hunger is an obvious one to tackle.
Absolutely, hence my suggestion above to feed her the same amount (and in bottles) over the weekend to see if the fussiness persists. That would be a good way of diagnosing whether the problem is food or sleep.
Daycare Q OP says
Thanks for the replies so far. They’ve been helpful! I should have been clearer before – he is getting pumped milk at daycare, and he bfeeds at home. We’re going to try a Dr. Brown’s bottle this weekend – if he takes that ok we will try sending those in case it’s a gas issue. I am willing to do some bottle feeding on the weekends, but not a ton because I like bfeeding, and want to make sure that continues. My daughter only took 12-16 oz of pumped milk at daycare when she was a baby, but it’s good to know that some babies need more. I’m pumping more like 18-20 oz a day, so he can easily have more. He might need it, since he is not eating at night. Daycare director seems to think maybe it’s a reflux or issue or problem with an allergy to something in my milk, but I would think if it was one of those he’d be fussy at home too! The teachers seem to think it’s an adjustment issue, but I would think after 5 weeks he would be ok with additional caregivers. We sent in a swaddle today to try for naps even though he sleeps unswaddled at home. Unfortunately I don’t think they can make it quieter/darker. One frustration is so far they don’t seem to be able to give me a good answer as to patterns – I’m going to keep trying to get better answers about that.
Good luck! And I don’t think you need to switch to bottle feeding on weekends *in general* — just for one day, feed him the same amount (same bottles) he would get at daycare. If he’s fussy, then that suggests that the issue is indeed feeding-related, and you can move on to trying different bottles/amounts. If he’s not fussy, that suggests it’s probably something else. So it wouldn’t be a long-term switch, just a way of varying only one thing in an attempt to isolate the problem.
I doubt it’s a feeding issue – digestive issues tend to linger and if he sleeps through the night it means he’s comfortable! But he could be hungry. Or maybe he’s a super sensitive soul who likes snuggles and nursing and is having trouble in a stimulating environment.
I haven’t seen anyone mention this yet from a quick scan of the comments, but any chance it could be a feeding problem due to bottle temp? If he’s used to warm milk and he’s getting it right out of the fridge, that could be causing him to refuse the bottle/eat less and then be fussy from hunger. I’d also ask them what they are doing as far as steps they are taking to put him down for naps. Does he have white noise at home that could also be used at daycare to deal with the noise in the room? Our daycare tries to mirror what we do at home and the approximate nap schedule and feeding schedule we have him on at home. When you have your meeting, maybe it would be helpful to have them take you through his day – perhaps something will stick out for you that could be causing him some kind of discomfort.
If he’s not eating at night then hunger is my guess. Even if you’re feeding him in the morning and at bedtime, that may not be enough for him. My daughter did 4 3-ounce bottles until she was 6ish months and I was nursing 3-4 times a day outside of that. Has he had a weight check lately? But it also seems like the daycare workers know a baby’s hunger signs.
So sorry you’re dealing with this. Good luck!
If he was hungry, I’d expect him to start eating more at night. Babies that are so hungry they’re fussy don’t then sleep through the night. They’ll reverse cycle and wake up more to eat.
I’d also expect any digestive issues to continue at night. It’s weird they’d only appear during the day. I don’t think that’s the issue.
Daycare Q OP says
He actually does nurse a lot between maybe 5:30-9 or 9:30pm. So he could be catching up on his eating then. I agree that it can’t be a major digestive issue (reflux, intolerance, etc). But if the bottles are making him a little gassy I have no idea how long that would take to pass (ha). Could he be working though the gas by night time? Seems like maybe?
If the teachers in the room think it’s an adjustment issue, how exactly are they asking you to fix it? That sounds like the teachers need to do the work to learn how to connect with and soothe the baby. You can’t make him bond from home.
If you’re BF at home, but bringing bottled to daycare, temperature aside, could it be a lipase issue? That could make the bottled milk taste or smell “off” to him. I would have assumed he would just be refusing if that’s the case, but maybe just try scalding the milk first. Either way, I agree trying to replicate the same feeding conditions at home is key to narrow down the possibilities.
I would add that if the daycare is going nuclear, my suspicion is that their patience is shot and they’re not coping with your baby as well as you’d prefer. They should be acting as partners, not telling you to fix it. Something is off with the adults, not just the 4 mo.
For what it’s worth, I was concerned about my 4 mo’s adjustment to daycare and started using breaks at work to drop in and peek into her room. I really wasn’t happy with what I saw in the infant room–disengaged workers chatting with each other, crying babies, and rooms far out of ratio. There was a reason my baby was stressed out by daycare and it wasn’t just adjustment issues. I ended up reporting them to the county (who did an inspection and sanctioned them) and pulling my daughter. Zero regrets.
If you can, I’d try to spend more time at the daycare. Try to drop off late or pick up early so you can check out the vibe in the room. Spend some time talking with the workers so you get to know them. Pop in on your way to or from an appointment. Get to know how the room functions and how the workers are so you either get comfortable (or uncomfortable) with the quality of care.
Boston Legal Eagle says
From what OP said in a follow up, it seems like a major director issue. In all of our daycares, I spoke primarily with my kids’ teachers about the kids themselves, and the director for admin issues. If the teachers here aren’t bothered (he’s a baby! babies cry!), why does the director feel the need to kick him out? I’ve actually never heard of a baby being kicked out of daycare, and I have seen babies cry every day for weeks in infant rooms (at least when dropping my kid off).
Yeah, it seems weird to kick out a baby just for crying. We have a cryer in my 6mo’s class, too — the baby screams whenever he is put down to nap or wakes up, and wakes up all the other babies. It sucks but the teachers are doing their best, the baby is doing his best, and it’s just part of having your kid in childcare.
I agree it’s weird the director is involved in this. Only thing I can think of is the teachers are super non-confrontational and they actually *are* bothered but don’t want to talk to mom about it so they asked the director to step in. Otherwise I agree it seems like the director is overreaching.
I think this is the answer–the teachers have asked the director to step in. I serve on my daycare’s board and see way more behind-the-scenes drama than I wish I did and have seen similar situations play out. At mine, the director steps into these types situations at the request of the teachers because they’re not comfortable having the conversation themselves. It usually doesn’t go over well for exactly the reason the OP is feeling here: parents feel blindsided because it seemed like the teachers were working with them or it wasn’t that big of a deal.
OP, I also think your daycare is going nuclear on you, even if the presumed context above is correct. The director needed to approach the issue in the spirit of problem solving and cooperation, not have a fix this or else attitude. I would see if a personal conversation with the director feels any different in tone, especially when you come with the various potential issues and solutions you’ve identified. I know our director, who I think is super great on many levels, sometimes doesn’t come across the best in email because she’s swamped with a million other things and getting that email sent so she can tell the teachers it’s done is the bigger priority (over consideration of tone). She would be different in a 1:1 conversation. How the director is in a 1:1 meeting should help you figure out where you really stand here.
Also, I agree that sending more/bigger bottles would be my first try, especially if you’re pumping substantially more than you’re sending.
I agree that it sounds as if the teachers wanted to avoid a difficult conversation so they asked the director to handle it. I also suspect that the child care shortage is making the center feel as if it has the upper hand and can pick and choose “easy” kids and families.
True on daycare shortage and easy kids and families. But our 3 yo goes there, and from all accounts they think she is delightful. So why would they want to risk losing her? (If they kick our son out, we will only keep her there long enough to find her somewhere else to go, which granted could be a long time. Sigh.)
I agree with this assessment, even though OP’s older kid went to the same daycare. It sounds like a director and/ or room management issue. Particularly if they aren’t attentive enough to identify any patterns… The hunger thing is easy to test and fix by sending more pumped milk plus backup can of formula. If it was reflux or a sensitivity, those typically get detected well before 4 months – like, we knew at 6 weeks that my daughter was sensitive to dairy due to her gas and bloody stools.
More Sleep Would Be Nice says
Gently, if you’re sending pumped milk, maybe send what you’ve pumped and also let them keep a can or some ready-to-feed formula as backup. Maybe he’s just stressed out and wants more food (a dude I understand completely).
I really hope this isn’t the issue. It makes me extremely sad to think of a poor baby being hungry and miserable for 5 weeks at daycare because no one could figure out that a crying baby might be hungry.
This is absolutely heartbreaking but does your son have seperation anxiety? When my daughter was that age she would cry and cry and cry when I left to go to work even though she was with grandma that she knew. She would have absolutely cried all day if she was with strangers like even though most babies would adjust to daycare (my second for sure would have been fine) my daughter would not have. I so hope there’s a solution that’s not seperation anxiety or liking to be held a lot etc.
Daycare Q OP says
It could be separation anxiety. He does seem to prefer me at home. (I didn’t realize babies this young could have it!) But if so, I have no idea how to fix it. Seems like even stretching our budget for a nanny wouldn’t solve it, if he can’t get comfortable with his daycare teachers after 5 weeks.
I second others that you need to have a 1:1 with the director and need to get a good feel on where this is coming from. We had a similar situation happen– DS had reflux as an infant and would occasionally have large spit ups. One of his teachers would tell us about this at length and started telling us she was going to have to send him home for vomiting if it kept happening. We really didn’t get where this was coming from because (a) he had reflux that he was taking medication for, (b) his other daycare teacher never saw the spit ups and had no complaints/insight, (c) by the time he was at daycare, he was not having big spitups for us at home. We talked to the director about it, and she suggested we get a doctor’s note explaining the situation. We stopped getting complaints after the doctor’s note. Also, of note- -the teacher who had been complaining was new to the baby room and is no longer in the baby room.
OP, I’m coming back to this at the end of the day and still feeling very frustrated on your behalf. It’s awesome that everyone here is pitching in to help diagnose the problem and offer advice but also, the TEACHERS should have been doing that! They have experience with scores of babies and should have been actively keeping you informed and offering suggestions from the very moment this started to be an issue. I refuse to believe that this is the first baby who has ever cried a lot at their daycare! Anyway I am not saying anything that other people have not already said but wanted to again say that this sucks but I am very confident it is a solvable problem and you guys will figure it out. Good luck and please keep us posted.
our first bout with pink eye and awaiting the results of a covid test, which I really hope is negative because my kids missed the last day of school and would be pretty sad to miss the first day. the pediatrician also said that with the new variant the at home tests are producing lots of false negatives. she also tried to tell me that if positive my kids should stay home for 10 days, and i explained that our school policy is 5 days and 5 days with a mask and she was like, unless they have a separate area for your kids to eat because most people are still contagious at 5 days and do i want to be responsible for infecting others….i mean honestly that was my question when the CDC updated their policy back in the spring and on the one hand of course i do not want to infect anyone, but it’s not like anyone else is going to stay home for ten days and normally i’m like what other people do shouldn’t matter, of course we should do the right thing, but it is so hard
Honestly I just do rapid tests and keep them home if they are sick. And if school says 5 days is good that’s what I do.
I don’t think it’s the case that *nobody* keeps their kid home for more than the 5 day period. We kept ours home til he tested negative on rapids (which turned out to be 9 days) even though the school policy was 5 days. We did it because we were able to (we have flexible schedules and could make it work) and we felt like it was the right choice for us. That being said, I’m not annoyed at people who do choose send their kids back after the 5 days.
Anecdata, but my husband has Covid now and had a clear positive within 12 hours of his first (very mild) symptoms. For all we know, he would have tested positive even sooner if he’d taken a test sooner. My boss also just had Covid and tested positive on rapid tests pretty much as soon as he had symptoms. I think the tests are still working most of the time. I agree with following whatever policy your school sets, even if it’s not the most grounded in science because that’s what everyone else is doing. Our daughter is permitted to attend school while my husband has Covid as long as she feels healthy, and we’re sending her. I feel sort of guilty about it (even though she’s fully and very recently vaccinated and we’re going above and beyond by giving her a rapid test every morning), but if this is the policy I know no one else is keeping their kids home for 10 days whenever there’s a case in the house.
Boston Legal Eagle says
At this point (and arguably, even before, unless kid has a particular high risk condition), isn’t the risk of missing school worse than possibly getting a (likely) mild illness? I keep reading article after article that kids have suffered from being out of school for so long. And it hurts parents’ careers. I’m not keeping my kid home for 10 days for other illnesses once they’re recovered, so why is this different, especially with vaccines available to everyone? I guess this issue puts me out of sync with other liberals, but this is where I’m at. Our school policy is the same as yours, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it changed to what they do for other illnesses – i.e. fever free, no major symptoms, etc.
There is harm to keeping kids out if they aren’t actually Covid+, but keeping a COVID+ kid out of school until they are no longer contagious is entirely reasonable otherwise they’ll get other people sick and cause more kids to miss school.
If a kid tests positive but is asymptomatic and is testing negative on rapid tests at day 5, then sure, they can go back with a mask. But if a kid is still having symptoms or testing positive on rapid tests, then they should stay home until they are better and no longer contagious.
And no, COVID is not necessarily only a mild illness. I know lots of people who have been very, very sick with COVID to the point they are missing 2+ weeks of work and taking several weeks after that to get their energy back. Even with vaccines, we shouldn’t assume it is mild and a big nothingburger. That’s ignoring reality.
This. Keeping actually infected kids out for longer will keep everyone in school for more days.
I agree that keeping infected kids out longer will actually decrease absences overall. However, our school district is going with a “don’t ask, don’t tell, please don’t test your kids, we will threaten you if they are absent for even a couple of days” policy instead. I wish we had moved to another district but it’s too late now.
The vaccines aren’t enough to keep teachers from needing sick days, and the schools are understaffed, so I’m not sure sending contagious kids in to school is the recipe for keeping school in session. And not many people want to sub for a teacher who is out sick specifically because of actively contagious students.
Sending contagious kids in to school is definitely not the way to keep schools in session, but school leadership does not seem to function on the basis of logic these days.
The doctor is right about the CDC guidelines (they’re clear that masking has to be 100% for 5 days of masking (no taking it off for lunch or anything). CDC guidelines also state that patients should avoid being around high risk people, even while masked, until after ten days have passed.
The CDC guidelines are stupid and appear to have been politically motivated. Nobody can return to work or school and mask 100% of the time. People have to eat, drink, blow their noses, etc. Infected kids need to stay home for 10 days or until they are testing negative, and if your school district doesn’t require that it should.
Yeah it was poorly thought out. I think the reasoning behind it was that if you’re 5 days in, masked and only briefly around someone you’re very unlikely to infect them (e.g., if you go to the grocery store in a mask 5 days after testing positive you probably won’t spread it). But school and work and being around your family members involve much more sustained contact, and it’s much harder to stay properly masked. I feel like they should have drawn a distinction between going to the grocery store and going to school/work/leaving isolation at home, but I guess they thought it was too complicated.
Earlier this week there was a post re polio and how it’s not something to worry about b/c it’s in an insular Jewish community outside of NYC that has low vaccination rates. In this morning’s paper, there is an article how in London, kids are being authorized for polio boosters b/c it’s in wastewater sampling there. Ugh. I feel like we were whack-a-mole with COVID, then routine other bugs, then monkeypox (still not concerned re that as we are officially hermits now), and now polio. I just cannot with 2022. [OTOH, this is reminding me to take my middle-schooler in for her HPV shots, which the doctor is all “no rush on this” and now I’m “get all of the shots as soon as you can” mode.]
I don’t think anyone was saying there wouldn’t be cases outside of the Hasidic community. They were saying there wouldn’t be massive worldwide spread like with Covid. I think it’s good they’re offering kids in London a booster, but I also don’t see this as something to panic about. Polio vaccines are very effective and there’s little risk to vaccinated people. I also don’t know the particulars of UK vaccination schedules but I know they do some things differently than us. For example, they don’t routinely vaccinate against chicken pox like the US does. So it’s possible US kids already have the booster the London kids are getting.
Yes. Because children in the US already get this booster. The NHS standard is less than the US standard. If you want to panic over polio have fun but you don’t need to.
I’m not personally worried about polio but will take a booster for my child if they roll it out UK-wide. We don’t have the exact same vaccine schedule as the US – things like chicken pox have to be done privately, so most people don’t do them, etc.
But it just feels emotionally relentless. Like one more impossible thing to worry about as a parent.
There was a stranger kidnapping attempt last month! One of the local nurseries here has had an e.coli outbreak and loads of children will have a delayed start to school as a result! And just what do you do anymore?
I mean, I live in Rockland County and I’m not worried. My husband and I are vaccinated, our toddler received all her polio shots on schedule, and I don’t spend any time with the Haredi community. I’ll probably avoid the Spring Hill Costco, Target, etc. for a while, but I don’t tend to frequent them anyway.
Nanny policies says
People with nannies-what are your policies around Covid positive (stay home until testing negative and pay nanny for those days)? What about after a Covid exposure, either at an event or of a household member? The share is two babies, one of whom is vaccinated and one of whom is not yet vaccinated but will be a few months after starting the share.
Stay home if you have Covid and get paid. If you’re exposed show up to work in a mask.
I’d specify an N95/KN95 mask and daily rapid tests if exposed.
For household exposure I’d probably ask for masking for 5 days. For Covid positive I would say CDC guidelines, 5 days of staying home then 5 days of masking. For the masked days I’d require a KN95 or better mask and provide one if she wants. On the days she’s masked, I’d probably ask her to take her meals outside if at all possible. If that’s not feasible because weather is terrible or you don’t have outdoor space, she should eat during the babies’ naptimes.
Stay home if positive, get paid. We had her test on day 6 after she first tested positive and she was still testing positive so we asked her to stay home until she was no longer testing positive, which happened on day 9. We paid her for those days.
With unvaccinated kids we had a conversation about the nature of the exposure and then sometimes decided to do come to work in a mask unless symptoms appear and rapid test daily) (generally if the exposure was outside or somewhat fleeting inside). When nanny’s husband tested positive (which we deemed a significant exposure), we asked nanny to isolate from her husband and test on day 6 (which she was fine with and
could do fairly easily in her house). We paid her for those days. She returned in a mask on day 6 because she tested negative. Had she been positive we would have asked her to stay home and she would have been paid.
With vaccinated kids we will probably just have her come in a mask and test daily.
Our contract, which was drafted during peak pandemic, provides 2 weeks paid sick time plus an additional paid week for COVID. If she has used that up and test positive again, then it’s unpaid time off. For exposure, the contract says quarantine in accordance with local public health guidelines, and it’s paid if exposure happened at our house/on the job and unpaid (or she uses sick/vacation time) if not. Practically speaking, what we’ve been doing now in terms of exposure is that she comes to work so long as she’s testing negative on rapid (if she was exposed) or if our household member is (if one of us), and we stop testing 5 days after exposure. I know that transmission is possible before a positive test and also that false negatives are possible, but this is a risk balance that works for her and us.
Our household (including toddler) are all up to date on shots; nanny is unvaccinated.
If nanny tests positive, stay home and follow CDC guidelines re: when she can return to work and when she can unmask at work. Get paid for all the days at home.
If household member tests positive – honestly it’s just her and her daughter in a small apartment and I don’t know how she’d avoid it, so we’d probably have her stay home and rapid test for 5 days and be masked as much as possible, and then continue masking when she returned to work.
She is vaccinated and so are we (and so is our 22 month old), but I’m pregnant.
FWIW, we also made “get vaccinated once it is available to you” a condition of employment and we screened for people who were on the same risk-tolerance wavelength as us when we were hiring. She flew home to visit her family and didn’t remove her mask at all (even to eat or drink) for a 15 hour flight because I’m pregnant and she didn’t want to risk anything (and yes, i trust her that she actually did this). So I’m not very concerned about her exposing us generally.
If positive, stay home until you test negative. I just generally assume we’re all exposed all the time at this point? For a direct exposure, take some rapids but still come to work. I don’t really worry about exposures anymore to be honest.
Following up on the late talking thing from yesterday, how common is it for an almost 2-year-old (23 months) to have only a small handful of words (mama, dada, and 2-3 others)? That’s my nephew and he also does not point or wave or clap. His parents have had him evaluated, but we were talking a few days ago about how they’ll get another evaluation because his language has barely progressed in months. He’s walking/running and started babbling around 18 months or so and he does make eye contact and bids for attention. You hear those stories about kids not saying a word until they’re 3 and then exploding into speech, but how common is that?
Sorry, somehow lost a sentence. I meant to say that he was evaluated between 12 and 18 months and was found to have a six-month delay, but the interventionist wasn’t very concerned.
It’s rare to not say a word until 3 and then suddenly explode into speech but it does happens. My husband’s best friend was that kid. He now has a math PhD and a professorship at a top university, so obviously a brilliant person. I would say not talking much at 2 and progressing more gradually is far more common.
My niece is 2 years old and also only has a handful of words, and she sometimes uses them correctly but sometimes completely out of context. She has been pointing and clapping for a while though, I want to say since 10 months or so.
My son had only about 5-10 words until he was maybe 22 months, and now he cannot stop talking and I would say he knows and uses hundreds of words (including very weird ones, like “emu” and “toaster”). It happened REALLY fast for us.
(he’s 26 months now)
+1 My son started talking pretty early but only had a handful of words for a very long time.
Just turned 2 and his language has just exploded. 3-4 word sentences and repeating things I say constantly. The other night we were watching some nature documentary and I said see the whale eat fish? And he goes whale eat fish!
I posted later yesterday on that thread. My son was one of those kids who said literally nothing except the word “quack” until a few weeks after he turned 3 (not even babbling), and then he started speaking in complete sentences. He qualified for EI, and the speech therapist was helpful in giving him some tools to communicate nonverbally, as well as assuring us that his comprehension was excellent, all his other social milestones were appropriate, that he’d start talking when he decided it was time.
Per my mom (not always a reliable historian), I was similar. And a friend’s brother was the same way.
I don’t think it’s super-common, but it happens enough that it’s not rare.
I’m being encouraged to apply for a big promotion at work. I currently supervise 10; the promotion would have me supervising a department of around ~150 people. It’s be a ~25% pay increase, and have the background and skills to be successful in the job.
But after white-knuckling it through Covid with two young kids constantly in and out of school, and going to bed in tears some nights because of … you know, everything … I just can’t seem to talk myself into applying. It’s such a weird feeling. A big part of my identity is (was?) holding my own as a bada*s Lady Boss in my male dominated field, and this new opportunity would amplify opportunities to do that, to be a great role model, blah blah blah – but the thought of *more* work and responsibility – I don’t know. Sheryl Sandberg would be very disappointed in me. I’m torn between applying and trying to recapture some of the ambition that seems to have died during Covid vs. just continuing in my often boring, still important, kinda-big job that I have now, with tons of flexibility to lean out when I need to. WWYD?
Sheryl Sandberg actually had this whole section in her book about her careers are jungle gyms not ladders and sometimes you go sideways or down because that’s what your life circumstances need at that time. I don’t think she would be disappointed in you at all if you decide not to pursue this. Not that some random tech exec’s opinion matters.
This is not to you or OP, but to quote Michelle Obama on the whole idea of always leaning in at opportunities when they present themselves – “That sh*t don’t work!”
I thought most smart, educated, career women (as are on this board) had all realized that much of what Sandberg wrote about was framed if one was coming from a place where ultimate career growth was the end-goal, which was great for us privileged gals back in the 2010s, but now (thanks to all the reasons OP enumerates) it just seems a lot more stale as the focus seems more on mental health, happiness, and balance.
This. I feel like the people who are so angry at Sheryl Sandburg haven’t actually read the book at all.
Yea it was poorly titled. The actual book was nuanced and pretty useful even if you’re not super ambitious (I’m not!)
I take great pride in being good at my job, but after having a baby and COVID burnout and other personal and family crises in the last few years, I find myself much less ambitious. I’m 10-15 years into my career, I don’t feel the need to prove myself anymore, and I really don’t want to live at the office. I have a family, I have things I enjoy doing aside from my job, and my job is just a means to make a living. I made a career change this year which may end up in me making less money, but it should also alleviate stress, and I feel pretty good about it.
In your case, I would want to make sure that not applying wouldn’t negatively impact your current position though – is this the kind of place where if you’re not constantly churning then you’re not part of the culture?
First, congrats on being in a position that you’re being encouraged to apply for a promotion! It sounds like this new position is a significant jump in responsibility, so it also doesn’t sound like a situation where you can negotiate something to address a specific concern or scheduling issue. I totally understand not wanting to take on more work at this stage. DH is more ambitious than I am, and I try to remind him that passing up a “better” or “higher” position (on paper) doesn’t mean you won’t ever have another good opportunity come your way. Maybe if the person encouraging you is someone you can be direct with, say you don’t feel that this is the right time for you to make a move like this, but that you are certainly open to it in the future and would like to do more of xyz so that when you do feel ready for it you’ll have the skills? Or otherwise make clear you do want to be considered in the future? While it sometimes feels crummy to “pass” on something, part of why you have worked so hard to this point is to be a position where you feel like you have some balance!
Oh, and I have had my job hours fluctuate a lot in the past year. I’m noticeably happier and healthier when it is lower/less pressing deadlines and stress. I no longer have any desire to amp back up to where I was at before. I honestly have days where I feel bad for that, but I’m still working and doing work meaningful to me and am at peace that I’m not going to be the most ambitious one out there. I appreciate your candor too.
I have taken every promotion I was offered since having kids. It’s super stressful! I have a super engaged husband but no local family. My husband is a big supporter of mine. My last promotion came very recently (as Roe ended) and he was basically like “we need women in charge and I will do whatever I can to support you being in charge.” I supervise several departments with just over 200 people. I started 8 years ago supervising 3!
My kids are 3 and 5 now. It is often stressful, especially at transition times (like right now as things are settling from the last transition). But I also get to do amazing things that I would not have ever done without this level of authority. I am an executive and get to be a part of shaping the whole organization (for the better). And I am at an employer I love doing work that matters and I am compensated fairly. I would not be willing to deal with the stress if the last parts weren’t true.
To add, I don’t know if you should do it or not. I was never given a true choice (I never had to apply – I was just given more work). I have no idea if I am doing it right. I am just doing it!
Are you in Oregon? Do I know you??
Haha no! I was worried someone would figure me out though.
It sounds like you already have a good job with serious responsibility. Many people never go higher than where you are right now. No one in your life will judge you, like, “I know you could be doing better but you stepped back!! Why did you not try HARDER?!” I think applying for these things can be stressful, you could be grilled in ways you aren’t expecting, and if you get it, you might end up thinking, “Oh no, now I actually have to do this day in and day out.” But I’m jaded at this point, and other people may find jobs more intrinsically rewarding than I have. Jobs screw you over eventually. They are impermanent. I firmly believe life isn’t just about career growth, even though our culture often acts like that is the measure of one’s value. Other things matter too, especially when you have kids that take real time and real energy, and you want to feel like you can go to bed without feeling weepy about it all. If you WANTED this job, I’d be cheering you on. But I hear a note of dread.
Right? Who is aspiring to be Sheryl Sandberg anymore? She wrote her book at a specific moment in history when things were going well for her company and for her, and she was high on life. But since then, she was blamed by Mark Zuckerberg when FB started taking the heat for all kinds of terrible things. Do you think it worked out great for her? I doubt she’s happy at this moment. Give what you are willing to give to your work, but it’s not a guarantee for fulfillment or ongoing recognition and gold stars. Work is work.
Whether you take it or not, it’s important to remember that work is work and your work doesn’t love you (your kids do!). I am the above who was promoted and I take my job seriously, but I am a parent first and sometimes my job just isn’t priority (I rarely work past 5pm or on weekends). I am at an organization that is fine with that, though. If that changes, I will leave.
I interviewed at a job once and asked about work life balance for parents. The woman interviewing me (who was super smart and very respected by her team) said, “Well, obviously family comes first,” and I was blown away to hear her say that so matter-of-factly without hedging it at all. They picked a more qualified candidate for the job, but her words have stuck with me and I wish she was my boss!
Congrats on doing such a good job that they’re asking you to apply for a promotion!
It’s ok to say no, or not right now. There is no rubic/ clearly defined metric for what success is or how you’ll know when you get there. It was really easy in school when we were getting grades and there was a right answer and a clearly defined goal post.
You sound tired and I completely agree that the past two years with children at home and COVID have been beyond exhausting. I’m dealing with physical symptoms of burnout that are awful.
Women often tend to be the ones that are self-sacrificing, and this has historically meant that we’ve opted out of business leadership positions to fulfill under/not paid roles of child rearing or elderly care or household care. At the same time though, you don’t have to sacrifice yourself so that other women get to see a woman leader. It is possible that there will be another woman applicant that will apply & get the role (I know you said it’s male dominated but it could happen). You are already a woman leader and just because you don’t want to do a big role right now, doesn’t mean that you never want to do it. Would you tell someone that you manage/ that you’re mentoring that they should apply to a bigger role if they felt like you feel?
Also, I’d really hope that Sandberg would be supportive of whatever path you choose to take that will take care of yourself and ensure that you’re able to have a long career full of periods of growth and plateaus.
OP here. Thanks, you guys are the best.
Upon reflecting on everything you’ve said, I think my issue might be a little different than how I originally articulated it. I do want the job – the influence, the prestige, and – sure – the money; but I also want my 2019 life back. The life where I had reliable and safe childcare, and where I could make plans for the future without having to also make a plan B and plan C in case of infections or cancellations. But since my 2019 life is never coming back, I feel like I need to maintain more space outside of work to manage all of the uncertainty and upheaval that is just part of the everyday now.
I really wish it wasn’t that way. I’d prefer to have my reserves of mental energy go towards something other than whether or not I can make to the grocery store for contactless order pickup since my kid is unexpectedly home on covid quarantine for the seven billionth time and I don’t have enough snacks to last through a day when I’m also supposed to be leading a contested case hearing.
FWIW, I turned down a promotion 2 years ago at the height of the pandemic. I was promoted “whether I like it or not” last year (tongue in cheek, I didn’t turn it down the 2nd time. Covid is waning, kids are all a little older and vaccinated, I felt like I had mental space to take it on) and my org is about to double in size again. If you don’t feel like you want to take on that responsibility now, you will almost certainly have other chances, because you’ll still be a rockstar employee that people want to elevate! And while I don’t have a crystal ball, it stands to reason that childcare will get more reliable again someday and covid will not run our lives quite as much by this time next year.
If the job you have works for your health and happiness and you’re worried that the new role would upset the balance, it’s ok to pass now. Now is not always. (It’s also OK to pass each time it comes up, but you can consider each opportunity as it comes.)
Question re: PPD. I am 35 weeks pregnant and have a long history of depression. My depression is actually the best it’s ever been right now, thanks to meds, a slew of major life changes, and a few months of CBT towards the end of 2021. I am aware I’m high risk for developing PPD and want to do what I can to mitigate that risk. I read the #1 thing to reduce the risk is doing CBT during pregnancy and after birth. I made an appointment with my therapist but I’m wondering if that makes sense since I currently have no symptoms of depression? Did anyone find this helpful? What other things would you recommend?
No tips other than that for me it showed up as postpartum anxiety, not depression, and I was not on the lookout for that. It got REALLY bad before I realized what was going on and was able to use techniques I’d learned in CBT for depression to manage it. So my main suggestion would be to proactively let your OB know and ask her to make sure you’re screened for both PPD and PPA at your postpartum appointments. And share your concerns with your loved ones and proactively invite them to tell you if they become concerned after birth.
this. I distinctly remember wearing my baby in a carrier, walking in circles, and sobbing while having intrusive thoughts due to PPA. It was not depression of the “I cant get out of bed” variety in any way shape or form. Increased meds and having someone at the house with me during the day were the two most helpful things; I don’t even recall if I did CBT in the thick of it, though I must have since I remember seeing my therapist during pregnancy and after.
I think having a therapist available to check in with is a great idea. Even if you’re not actively depressed or anxious, a new baby is a stressful event and it can be helpful to have someone to give you a place to discuss exactly how you feel about it without any judgment. I am 36 weeks, and I just booked appointments with my therapist for every two weeks for a little while, with an option for every week if I need it. Also for my husband, who is both becoming a dad and quitting his job, so it’s even more life transitions for him.
I think it makes a ton of sense. Therapy can help with a ton of things- not just depression. Delivery and new motherhood is a heck of a life change. I replayed my (wonderful, happy) delivery a lot in my mind and probably would have benefitted from some CBT around it. The “worst” case scenario of doing therapy is you don’t get get PPD/PPA, you do a couple of sessions, realize you don’t need it and feel like it was a waste of money. I’d view that as a huge win!
You definitely want to have a therapist on call & regular visits scheduled.
First of all, and I hope this doesn’t happen to you, but be prepared for the hormone crash that happens after you give birth, often called the “baby blues.” I was not prepared for this and it was very bad for me, like panic attack level w/nausea & difficulty sleeping and everyone kept telling me I couldn’t take clonapin/xanax etc. b/c I was breastfeeding. They kept offering benadryl which did nothing. Talk to your psychiatrist if you are currently on meds- I could have been taking meds for relief but the Ob/pediatrician didn’t know this. This period lasted 2 or so weeks after birth and it was only that short for my 2nd & 3rd b/c I was going outside & walking in the sun pretty soon after birth (recognize this is not possible for c-section folks, but it was critical for me).
Also, and I know this sounds crazy with a newborn, but you need to work through a schedule with your partner (if you have one) on how you will get sleep, even if you’re breastfeeding. You should be aiming for at least one 4 hour block each night. It may feel impossible to get that much but I cannot stress how important sleep is. For me, as I’ve only found out recently, bad sleep is a major trigger for my anxiety/depression. If you can afford it, look into a night nurse. Ask family members, if they’re helpful, to do shifts for you (or even for a whole night). Don’t tell yourself your partner shouldn’t need to get up b/c you need to breastfeed. With my first, I was on a schedule of nursing or pumping every 2-3 hours. I was a wreck for 2 months. It was horrible.
There’s obviously no guarantee that b/c you’ve had depression in the past that you will also have PPD/PPA, but I figure it’s better to be on the lookout. I wish you a safe and easy delivery!
Pregnant lady says
Has anyone had covid while pregnant and are you willing to share your experience? I realize everyone’s is different but I’m curious how others have done with it.
Sunny days says
I had Covid when I was 8 weeks pregnant. It was really rough as I could only take plain cough meds and my regular asthma inhaler. At night, I had asthma attacks that ganged up with coughing fits, which got scary as I felt that I couldn’t breathe. I was sleeping for maybe an hour or two at a time as a result. My doctor thought I might have a secondary infection (thanks horrible pregnant immune system), so put me on antibiotics and steroids. I ended up in the ER two days later due to the breathing issues. The doc gave me a cough med that was untested on pregnant mom’s but he said breathing was more important than avoiding the cough meds. The meds helped a lot–I was able to sleep, which allowed me to recover quickly. My cough lasted a few more weeks. The fatigue and brain fog are still with me, but maybe that’s first trimester stuff too? It’s rough and scary. But hoping the fetus will be wicked strong due to surviving all of that. The doctor mentioned she may start me on daily aspirin at week 12 and get higher level scans during the second and third trimester to account for the Covid.
Wow, very similar on all counts except I got COVID second trimester.
Covid labor says
I caught it during the omicron surge the day after Christmas when I was 37.5 weeks pregnant. To be fair I probably deserved to catch it – we’d gone to a concert at the Kennedy Center and then out to Christmas Eve brunch. Mild symptoms (was vaxxed and boosted also while pregnant) but just felt very yucky for 48 hours. The symptoms were all gone when I spontaneously went into labor at 39 weeks, but I was still testing positive. So… I got to give birth in the covid isolation ward. They didn’t even test my husband (better not to know?) and allowed him to stay with me. Daughter was born perfectly healthy. They never tried to isolate her from us and she tested negative right before we were released.
I got Covid during my second trimester. I felt fine for a few days, then quite tired with some coughing but not that bad. Within about a week I felt back to (pregnant) normal. My whole family was positive at the same time so I did not attempt to isolate or mask inside or anything like that. I spoke to my ob and she gave me some guidance on caring for myself, medicine options, and what to look out for.
Kristen from BLF just had it and it sounded like she had a really rough go of it.
Yes! That is what got me really worried!!