Post # 1
So I’m only about 8 weeks which I realize is super early to be worried about these things, but I’m getting really scared about what is going to happen after my maternity leave ends… I would love to be a Stay-At-Home Mom but at this point in our lives I really can’t afford to stop working so I’m trying to figure out logistics for childcare and it’s becoming overwhelming because I only have 6 weeks of STD and then 12 weeks (which I think includes the first 6 weeks) of FMLA. So basically, if I exhaust everything I can, my baby will only be 12 weeks when I have to go back to work, which is depressing enough on its own, but it also means any kind of normal daycare (big business, not at home) will be crazy expensive. I might consider a home daycare if one were available but unfortunately there aren’t any anywhere near me, and nannyshare seems really unlikely because people in my area with kids are super wealthy (small condos like ours where you’d have to be crazy to have kids are semi-affordable but attached single families range from $2million-$20million) so I feel like I have no options :-/ My family also is spread out across the world and DHs family is an hour plus away so I won’t have that support either… I know it’ll all work out in the end, but I’d appreciate any success stories, so how has everyone else figured it out?
Post # 2
i’m currently in grad school studying infant development, and from what i’ve observed, babies who are put into daycare early (around 2 months) often have higher levels of social development which is AWESOME for when they go to preschool and up. don’t worry. i know it’s hard and expensive to raise a family, but you gotta do what you gotta do. i think as long as you find a reputable daycare, you’ll feel safe with them caring for your newborn. check out their credentials, and see how they operate their business. it should be warm and inviting, and ask around parents. good luck, and congrats on being a mommy!!! ^___^
Post # 3
I’m sorry you’re worried about childcare but I think it’s smart that you’re thinking about it this early on. Have you considered looking at Care.com or other nanny-finding sites where you might be able to find and hire an individual caregiver that you trust?
Post # 4
ETA I’m only 8 weeks pregnant, dont’t have the baby yet! Just reread my post and realized that was a little unclear…
catpeaches: I haven’t heard that, but I guess it makes sense that kids that hang out with other kids earlier would be more okay with it… I’m pretty sure no matter what I do I’ll end up feeling guilty because I always imagined I’d be a stay at home mom, but such is life!
Post # 5
TogetherThroughLife: I have looked at care.com but the ones that are willing to work in my area are super expensive ($15-$25/hr and I’d need 45hrs/week)… I’m thinking I want to try to find a nannyshare because that seems a lot more manageable if I can find one, but that is a big if around here… I also don’t know how open people would be to it because we have a small one bedroom so it’s not like there is a ton of space for multiple babies to play in…
Post # 6
do you know (or know anyone that knows) a stay at home mom who might be willing to care for your child as well (for a fee)? That might make the financial aspect less and their children will get to have friends as well. just obviously be carefull if you don’t know her personally and do a background check all that jazz.
Post # 7
Do you know how much the daycare centers are charging for infants? Around here it is $1200-1300 a month but it’s still often cheaper than a nanny or even nanny sharing. Most kids do just fine in daycare, I’ve toured some that seem like they do a great job. Read reviews!
Post # 8
We have an in-home babysitter (DD goes to her house) and she has been going there since 8 weeks old. She isn’t a licensed center though, so if you were to search a website for licensed in-home providers you’d never find her. I agree with PP’s suggestion to ask around, maybe there are other moms in your area or at work who could make a suggestion for a particular place?
Post # 9
lazybee123: It’s never too early to start looking for childcare for an infant!
If you’re 8 weeks, that means your baby is probably due aroud March? 12 weeks puts you back at work in June, which is the perfect time to find a college student! My Dirty Delete was born in February and I started work in June. I used care.com and found an AWESOME college student to watch her in my home until she goes to a home daycare in August. Many of the sitters charge much more than we were able to afford. We really got lucky, in that I told her my budget and she was willing to work with it. You could also point out to people if you are paying under the table that it makes a big difference!
Even if there aren’t licensed home daycares near you, there could be people offering daycare out of their home still, which isn’t necessarily a bad option if you do your research and have them background checked. I would look for these on local community boards, craigslist, newspaper ads, etc.
Honestly, as awful as it sounds to send your baby to daycare, it really isn’t that bad when it comes down to it. It’s really nice to have a break and some time away to miss your LO. You definitely appreciate the time you have together. Are you able to adjust your schedule to work 3 or 4 days a week instead of full time? That could save some money in childcare costs and also strike a nice balance for you between working and staying home.
Post # 10
I make 90% of our household income, so being a Stay-At-Home Mom is totally not in the cards for me. On the flip side of that, there’s no way Darling Husband And I can afford FT infant care…it ranges about $2K a month in our city! So we’ve decided that I’m going to work from home one day a week, and Darling Husband will work from home two days a week…the other two days, we’ll probably do an in-home nanny. I know that seems luxurious but having someone in our home for two days will end up costing about half what daycare will cost…at least while baby is an infant. I would definitely check with your employer to see if some sort of telecommute option (work-from-home, etc.) may be available.
You’ll find something wonderful, I’m sure! I think the key is just being flexible.
Post # 11
As a PP suggested you may be able to find a college student to watch your baby for the summer. if you have a college nearby you could probably email the dean of the education dept. and find someone who wants experience and a reference. If you know anyone nearby you could split the cost of the nanny with them.
As a nanny myself I see many benefits of having your baby in daycare. There is so much socialization and constant opportunities for learning. Sometimes even with a nanny it’s hard because most parents expect us to clean while we are in their homes. Also, I love taking my charges out to socialize, but if the weather is bad or something that means we are stuck inside with no other kids to play with. I love my job, and there are certainly upsides to having a nanny, but I will definitely enroll my kids in a daycare!
Another major factor to consider is what you can afford. You really have to be honest with yourself on this one, and if you can’t afford a nanny you can’t afford one, and that is okay. I hate when I find people on Care.com that want to pay $2/hour for the “best nanny ever!” I think it is like everything else, you get what you pay for. If you choose to only pay the bare minimum you will just get a warm body to watch your baby rather than someone who is truly invested. I think the only exception is hiring the college student for a summer. many education majors would be thrilled to work for minimum wage for the experience, and they are also typically passionate about what they are doing!
Post # 12
I had to find last minute day care for my year old niece, when we got custody of her. We yanked her out of at home daycare because she got sores from her diaper not being changed enough and she seemed to regress, found out that she was in her car seat most of the day watching Judge shows during the day. The “chain” daycare in our area did full time day care, preschool and were credited for kindergarten, so she had the same kids with her for a few years. They all still spend summers together. She learned so much so quickly because they employ actual teachers. It cost about half my pay check, but I didn’t worry and she wasn’t sick as much.
A girl I work with just came back from her 6 weeks of mat. leave, she’s paying 600 a month for daycare for her newborn. It’s right around the corner from our work, she went today to Boyfriend or Best Friend the baby. They have a $5.00 a minute layfee for picking up your kids, it’s a chain but the baby can stay there through kindergarten.
Post # 13
Daycare in my area is crazy expensive too…. many centers are $2000-2500/month for infant care. But, there is obviously a range. And, they are the most expensive for infants, but they are only infants for a limited time, and it gets less $$$ after that. I would do some research into prices and centers in your area and see what things look like… probably better than wondering about it, you know?
We are TTC soon and it’s definitely scary to hear friends talk about daycare costs… but what can you do? I will be taking 12 weeks, unpaid besides any vaca/sick time I can save. Ugh.
Does your employer or your husband’s have an Employee Assistance Program? They can research daycare for you… may be a good place to start. I don’t know how comprehensive they would be (ie just big centers or other options) but might be good to check out.
Post # 14
If you cannot find anyone in the newspaper or Craigslist, where you could put up a request ad (yes there are reputable people there as my current sitter who has a legitamite business that she pays taxes on) then have you considered becoming a sitter yourself? I have a friend who did this and she loves it. She gets to stay home with her daughter, and she watches just a few others it is also lucrative depending on a number of things. I would do it, but I don’t have as much for kids who never behave, haha! Anyway, good luck and let us know what you come up with?
Post # 15
Childcare is a HUGE expense wherever you are and unfortunately no one else can tell you what to do. I started researching prior to getting pregnant, thought we had a great place but we ended up pulling her after only 2 weeks and then had to scramble to figure something. We ended up hiring a nanny. She is more expensive but we make it work. The only thing I can offer is that yes it will be crazy expensive but you will figure it out. If someone had told me that we’d be paying what we’re paying now prior to her arrival I would have fainted but it is so much easier to pay more and have the peace of mind to know she’s being well cared for when I can’t be there.