View Full Version : Should I Term Family Before They've Even Started?

Sandbox Sally
03-12-2012, 11:48 AM
Ok here's the sitch...

The same mom who wanted to come all day this week with her son to help transition him has called in sick today for his first day. I get it. Kids get sick, and it may just be bad timing. But - I dunno. I just think she's having a really really hard time letting go, and I am a little worried she'll bail on me. I can deffo replace him if she does, but I have another family who are all ready and willing to sign for four days a week (instead of the three this family wants), but I don't have room for them. I really got along with the second family, as I also did with the reluctant mom.

Reluctant mom has already signed paperwork and brought me a deposit, but I am really feeling leery. She mentioned in her interview that she had planned to stay home with her son, but her old job offered her a huge part time opportunity. She mentioned that she felt weird leaving him. She told me verbally that she wanted a 3 day a week spot, then when I sent her the paperwork, she filled it out with two days a week, and told me she changed her mind on bringing him for a third day. When I told her that it was a 3 day minimum, she conceded, and reluctantly agreed (again) to the 3rd day.

Reluctant mom was also two days late getting back to me with paperwork, AND I stayed home all afternoon on Friday, as she was supposed to come by between 2:30 and 3:30, only to show up closer to 5pm without an apology. I kept dck's in all afternoon waiting for her. I wasn't too impressed.

So what do you think, women? Do I call her to come pick up her deposit, and take the other family? Or do I give her a chance? I am very much looking forward to your replies, as I honestly can't decide what to do.

03-12-2012, 12:17 PM
I think you know my opinion on this one from my comments about her transition time :) Anyone who wants to attend daycare with their child isn't ready to let go. The fact that she keeps changing form 3 to 2 days/week would concern me as well. She obviously doesn't 'have' to work as she had planned on staying home and those mom's always worry me as they can pull their child out anytime to stay home with them. I think the problem is the Mom, she's just not ready to let him go and return to work. Sounds to me like she will drive you nuts. If you have another family ready to go and feel that they would be a better fit, then I would refund her deposit with your apologies. You have to do what you feel is best for you and for your daycare, but if your already having second thoughts maybe its best to cut them loose before they become too much. Go with your guy, its rarely wrong! Good luck :)

03-12-2012, 12:27 PM
I would do what Michelle said- follow your gut

I would call, apologize profusely and tell her it has nothing to do with the sick day but that you are having second thoughts and think that you may not be a good fit after all.

Based on the extra income from the second family (1 extra day) would be my choice...especially if the second family seems really nice too. What if mom #1 signs with you (reluctantly) for 3 days and then a few months from now tries to back out again?? (by going back to 2 days)

03-12-2012, 12:32 PM
This is a hard one!! If it were me, I would give it about 3 weeks. If erratic/annoying behaviour continues then I'd pull the plug and go with family #2. In the meantime, I'd let family #2 know that family #1 is currently on a 3 week probation to see how things go and that you will remain in contact with them. Good luck!

03-12-2012, 12:41 PM
I'd go with your gut. Sounds like if you keep this family you are going to have problems the whole time as something is always going to bother her as she really does not want to be apart from her child and will probably look for any excuse to pull him out. I'd do a refund and tell her that you really have some reservations about caring for her child and that it is just not going to work out.
If you like family #2 then I would go with them.

03-12-2012, 12:47 PM
I would go with the family who needs 4 days. And from your post it seems you want the other family as you have concerns about this family. Who knows she might come one day and say "well actually I only need 2 days" I wouldn't risk.

Good luck.

03-12-2012, 12:57 PM
I would go with family number #2. Reading your post, my perception of it is that this is also what you want to do! no?

03-12-2012, 01:03 PM
Since she only brought the paperwork on Friday and then for the first day was away - as in child did not start as in the contract I would just contact her and say that you have changed your mind and that you do not feel that the relationship is going to work and to please come and pick up her deposit check. You might be surprised to find out she is just as relived as you are - one of the reasons she waited till the absolute last minute she could to bring the paperwork - she just mentally couldn't do it which is something you have alluded to. It also makes no sense if work offered her a job for 3 days, then she only needs 2 days of care then agrees to 3 - but that means three paid days, doesn't mean child will actually come the third day which while it is great to get paid for no care also means you will be weeks getting the child to settle in if he ever does since he will pick up on mom's apprehension.

The most fussy families tend to interview the most number of people before choosing one so she probably has some other names to fall back on so I wouldn't feel too badly about abandoning them. Doesn't sound like she wants to go to work anyways.

A family needing 4 days a week and comes with the insecurities is definitely a better fit for daycare.

Sandbox Sally
03-12-2012, 01:43 PM
Ok, thanks everyone. I just talked to dad from family #2. They are going to swing by later with their deposit and paperwork. Now I just have to tell mom #1...yipes. OH! And she called me about half an hour ago to tell me that her son has roseola, so I guess he is legit sick. She expressed concern, though, as she is pregnant. It seems now as if it'd only have been a temporary placement anyway. Back to work to build up mat leave maybe? Dunno.

So that leads to my next question. What do I say? How do I not leave it on bad terms with family #1.

03-12-2012, 01:47 PM
she never told you she was pregnant? I can see if it was early on that she's not telling people, but...if she was totally trying to hide it from you that's not ok. Sounds like you dodged a bullet since I'm sure she would pull him the minute she hit those 600 hours for mat leave again!

Inspired by Reggio
03-12-2012, 01:55 PM
Oh tough one for sure - not sure how I would handle this to be honest cause I am a sucker for having made a commitment and following it through as long as they are paying on time and following the rules?

However you kinda have to 'terminate' them if you have now promised space to 4 day a week family - not sure how you do that without 'bad feelings' on the Family A fault though - except perhaps cross your fingers that this is what she wanted TOO?

03-12-2012, 02:51 PM
Well tell her that she should have tell you about her pregnancy as you are only looking to fill the spot for long term not for temp. And also you can add what you are thinking about the whole thing. It will open her eyes.

03-12-2012, 02:53 PM
By the way, how long you have to be working to be able to have maternity leave rights? :)

Sandbox Sally
03-12-2012, 02:54 PM
Inspired by Reggio, I do get what you're saying about the commitment, but I am just getting bad feelings about the family.

I guess I just tell her the truth - I am just not sure we will be such a great match after all, and apologize profusely.

Inspired by Reggio
03-12-2012, 03:05 PM
I guess I just tell her the truth - I am just not sure we will be such a great match after all, and apologize profusely.

This is likely always the best ... the trick will be without making it be about the 'mat leave' and more about feeling that her needs might be best suited in a program that can offer the two days she truly needs or something ... I know for me I would approach it that personally I find part time infant care very challenging and upon reflection am concerned that it might to too hard to him to adjust specially when mom seems to also be feeling 'torn' about having to send him to daycare in the first place cause children are empathetic to mamas feelings. At this time you have decided upon reflection that it would be best in the long run for your program to seek an older full time child" or something like that?

Crayola kiddies
03-12-2012, 03:38 PM
Cocoon .... I'm not sure if it's the same all across Canada but here in Ontario you have to have a minimum of 600 hours (last time I checked)

03-12-2012, 03:48 PM
Wow, red flags all over the place with Family #1, especially from your other post with the transition needs and now finding out she is pregnant. Sadly, we do have to look out for ourselves and the family that wants 4 days/week, is not quite so needy and demanding and is not pregnant would be the logical choice for you. The families have to do what is best for their needs, but so do we!

As far as talking to the woman on the phone, just be honest and straightforward that you have been considering the two families and have made your choice now and it was a mistake to accept her deposit so you are returning it. It's your business decision and she may even be relieved.

03-12-2012, 05:25 PM
Needing enough weeks of work to get mat leave benefits again so sounds like the reason. That is how I got a 4 month old a couple years ago. Mom found out she was pregnant and needed to go back for 6 months so she would qualify for another paid year of mat leave. And moms wonder why employers treat them badly when all they get is 6 months work for 2 years on the payroll.

03-12-2012, 06:28 PM
After reading everything, I think would have done the same as you Alphagetti. I get the impression that this situation might be just short term.
I always now go with my gut and any time I haven't in the past, it back fired on me.

03-13-2012, 02:14 AM
A little late to weigh in here, sorry!
At first I was going to say give them a chance. After a couple weeks at work, she may be feeling better about this big change.
HOWEVER; I think you made the right decision, and you may be able to use her pregnancy as an "out". Return the deposit, thank them for everything, but let them know that you were looking for a family that could make a long term commitment to you. Wish them the best, and then bid them goodbye.
Hope it all goes well!
PS- Better to have to "choose" between 2 families than to have to "take what you can get", am I right??

03-13-2012, 12:52 PM
Looking for an update :):) ...how did 'breaking the news' go?

Sandbox Sally
03-13-2012, 12:58 PM
No update yet. I tried calling her, but couldn't reach her, so I emailed her the news. I told her that I was very sorry, but I am no longer able to provide care for her son, and that upon deeper reflection, I didn't feel equipped to meet his needs as well as the needs of my other daycare children who had been there longer, and to whom I must give priority.

I tried to word it so that that onus was on me, and not anything happening as a result of anything she has done or said. Why bother getting into all that? I am hoping she takes it well. I am not a confrontation kind of person, and will be distraught if she becomes angry. I am just repeating to myself the worst case scenarios, and none of them seem all that bad as I listen to them over and over in my head. ;)

New girl started today. She's a sweetie. I don't regret my choice, no matter what the fallout.

Inspired by Reggio
03-13-2012, 12:58 PM
Ditto - inquiring minds would like to know that you are ok!

Sandbox Sally
03-13-2012, 01:00 PM
^^ ^^ ^^ ^^
See above...Reggio, I think we posted at the same time!

Inspired by Reggio
03-13-2012, 01:08 PM
Would he have been in attendance today normally - just hoping she got the email and does not 'show up' on your door stop for her next scheduled day cause I know he was supposed to be 'part time'. I have clients who do not check their email for WEEKS drives me nuts - cause that is my preferred mode of quick contact as well if I cannot get them personally at drop off or pick up!

Glad new girl is setting in and hoping that other mom is understanding and just busy and will contact you re getting her deposit back soon - the 'waiting for a shoe to drop' would drive me crazy!!!!

Sandbox Sally
03-13-2012, 01:12 PM
Hm, yeah it is driving me crazy. She checks email regularly, so I know she'll get it. As I said yesterday, he was diagnosed with roseola, so he was scheduled to attend, but it was already understood that he wouldn't be coming today. His next scheduled day is to be Friday. We'll see. I'll update as soon as she flips out on me....I mean, gets into contact. :(

03-13-2012, 01:13 PM
It sounds like you did the right thing. I wouldn't have made it about the pregnancy as some others suggested as it was her right not to tell she was pregnant. I had a client who was pregnant when her child started with me and did not tell me, but told me when she was 3 months along at the same time she told everyone else. I didn't see anything wrong with it. A lot of moms keep their kids in daycare during mat leave anyway, so one can't assume it is short term, although this mom probably wouldn't have stayed! Good luck!

Sandbox Sally
03-14-2012, 01:29 PM
Yep...she got nasty. LOL

I didn't hear anything back from her, so I tried calling again. No answer, so I sent another email saying that I hadn't heard anything from her, and was wondering how to refund her deposit. I told her that if I didn't hear from her in the next few days that I would email transfer it to the address where we had been corresponding. She then emailed me back immediately and told me to wait, asked me what my hurry was, and then proceeded to tell me how I had greatly inconvenienced her, and my pulling out of our arrangemnt has made her have to cancel returning to work. I'm SURE...She didn't even seek care until two weeks ago, and didn't see fit to make it to my house to sign the paperwork until three days before care was due to start!

I then sent an email back telling her I'd await her reply re the money, and then told her that the real reason I'd cancelled care was because I wasn't pleased about her repeatedly not calling when she said she was going to, and also because she clearly didn't value my time as she left me waiting inside my home with daycare children for three hours without an apology. I told her that if she wished to find quality care for her son, that perhaps in future she should be a little more courteous to child care providers. Shrug. She might slander my name, but I don't mind much. I have a loyal group, and they all know that I am good at what I do. Sour grapes.

03-14-2012, 01:53 PM
She's bitter but she'll get over it. Hopefully, this will open her eyes!

03-14-2012, 04:03 PM
She cancelled going back to work because of you? Yeah right! What a liar! It was obvious she didn't wanted to go to work, she only wanted to go to work to get maternity rights. I wouldn't feel sorry for her at all. I hate people thinking that the world goes around them. Good that you opened her eyes. I always prefer and do tell the truth however hard it can be. And always tell people "if you don't let people what is bothering you or they are in the wrong how would they know whatever they are doing is upsetting or annoying you?"

I'm glad you told her the truth and opened her eyes:) And I'm even glad that you had the option to not choose her:)

I hope the new family and the baby is hantastic for you:)

03-14-2012, 06:40 PM
Remember when I told you that she might even be relieved? I bet she was happy to give her boss the excuse that she doesn't have childcare, what a dope! She's so rude not to answer your emails. Alpha, I'm really, really happy you went with your gut because you made the right decision for sure.

03-15-2012, 03:29 AM
I then sent an email back telling her I'd await her reply re the money, and then told her that the real reason I'd cancelled care was because I wasn't pleased about her repeatedly not calling when she said she was going to, and also because she clearly didn't value my time as she left me waiting inside my home with daycare children for three hours without an apology. I told her that if she wished to find quality care for her son, that perhaps in future she should be a little more courteous to child care providers. Shrug. She might slander my name, but I don't mind much. I have a loyal group, and they all know that I am good at what I do. Sour grapes.

I love that you dropped that info on her. She may or may not be happy to hear it, but it is the utter truth. She can't string daycare providers along, make all kinds of demands and be snippy if she is looking for a quality care relationship.
Glad that this is/will all work out for you. Bring on family B!!! :)

03-15-2012, 08:46 AM
Honestly, I would let her go. If your gut is telling you it's not going to work out, let her go. The second family is more beneficial to you as a BUSINESS. I think if you feel the second family would be better suited, I would go with the other family. I think maybe mom is feeling a little guilty about leaving and you letting her go could be her go ahead to drop the job ad stay home - because that is clearly what she wants. Do what's best for YOU as a BUSINESS. Don't let your emotions get the best of you. I would return her deposit, just for good faith, and simply explain that her lack of consistancy clearly indicates that she's not ready to part with her son.