This post is part of the ‘Tales From The Other Side Of …’ series. There are so many stages, achievements, milestones and heartbreaks we go through as parents and whatever we are experiencing, whether good, bad, exciting or terrifying, it’s always nice to know someone else has already done it and come through the other side. To find out how you can get involved and share your story/tips and tricks click here.

Today we have the lovely Ellen from E L Feelgood’s Vintage sharing the challenge she had finding childcare for her son when she returned to work..

Every other month, I try to have a clear out or tidy up of my wardrobe.  It really is just too big for the room but then again, I have a lot of stuff that I really don’t need!  Each time I do this, I am faced with the reminder of a time when I felt so helpless and frustrated.  It was the challenge of finding childcare for my son when I was about to return to work after 9 months pregnancy leave.

What is it that reminds me of it?  The daily notes that the childcare workers wrote, detailing my son’s activities, what he ate and how he got on and the amount of times they used Calpol to try and stop him crying!

Are you on the lookout for Childcare? Read why Ellen advises trusting your mother's intuition when it comes time to decide ...

I knew when I decided to go back to work that finding childcare would be a challenge, but I never thought it would be the most difficult and guilt-ridden decision as a mummy I would make.  Finding quality, accessible, and cost-effective childcare is hard but when you get a gut feeling about a place but can’t put your finger on it but go ahead as you think you are being paranoid is yet another challenge.

My son was 9 months old, I wanted to find a place for him where he could play and learn in a supportive and nurturing environment.  I wanted him stimulated as at 9 months he still wasn’t sleeping through the night.

After making a list of places that seemed appropriate, we opted for one that was close to where we lived.  I still had a gut feeling that I couldn’t shake but put it down to me feeling guilt about leaving him and going back to work.  Unfortunately, this was not the issue at all as I was soon to find out.

I started to get phone calls from the nursery daily saying he wasn’t settling, that they thought he was teething and could they give him Calpol.  I agreed but it started to become more frequent.  I got out of work early one day as they phoned to say he wasn’t settling.  When I entered the baby room of the nursery there he was in a little rocking seat sitting facing the corner!

I could not believe my eyes.  I already felt like a bad mommy for going back to work and leaving him in childcare, so to witness this and have that bad gut feeling authenticated, was yet another blow.  I immediately pulled my son out of that nursery.  They must have known they were in the wrong as they never asked for the one month I was due to give them in lieu of notice.

I am thinking now of all those times that gut feeling came to me.  However, as a family we did overcome this parenting challenge.  We sought out a social enterprise childcare provider a bit further out.  As they were a social enterprise their bottom line was not profit but about supporting and nurturing children.

If there is one message I would like to share, it is that as a mummy we must have inbuilt gut feelings when it comes to our children.  It’s important to listen to that.  I just wish I would have listened sooner to mine.  Thankfully we as a family managed to overcome this parenting challenge.  

Thank you Ellen for sharing your story. Finding good childcare is such a struggle for so many of us and Ellen’s tale proves that trusting your instincts and following your intuition is so important.

Copy of E.L. Feelgood's Vintage LogoEllen is a lifestyle blogger with two teenage sons.  You can connect with her here:

E L Feelgood’s Vintage





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13 thoughts on “Looking for Childcare? Trust Your Gut – a guest post from E L Feelgood’s Vintage

  1. I agree that finding the right childcare can be a really tough decision – I’m sorry you had a bad experience with your first nursery. My daughter was in her first nursery for over a year and while it was never that bad, she never really settled in there. I put it down to her attachment to me, but when we moved her to a different nursery she was much happier. I don’t know if that’s because it’s a better nursery or because she’s a bit older now, but I think I’ll always feel bad for not trying to move her sooner. #familyfun
    The Squirmy Popple recently posted…How to use the Curly Girl Method to transform your curlsMy Profile

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 7:02 am
  2. Oh that’s made me feel so sad reading it, completely agree that gut feeling is so important #familyfunlinky
    Cheshire SEN Tutor recently posted…“How to Get My Child to Sleep” My Profile

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 8:56 am
  3. We spent a long time finding the right childcare for our daughter. We had to fight hard to get in, as they had a long waiting list. It’s early days, but I think we are in a good place. We had a great feeling about it, better than all the others we went to. #FamilyFunLinky
    Dad recently posted…VomitMy Profile

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 9:01 am
  4. It can be hard. And, all providers are so different. My son’s childminder had stopped minding when I was ready for daughter to go, so we had to find someone else. They could not be more different in their approach. But, both wonderful! #familyfunlinky

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 12:57 pm
  5. This is really informative post and lots of really important stuff to think about when it comes to childcare X #familyfun

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 5:48 pm
  6. Oh that’s terrible! Like you say mums instinct is definitely to be listened too. Lots of parents ask me what to look for in a school for their little one and I say something similar; go with your gut reaction within 5/10 minutes not the Ofsted inspection report! Great post. #familyfun

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 6:59 pm
  7. Yep, always trust your gut! It can be hard to always determine what it’s telling us but it’s usually pretty accurate. #FunFridayLinky

    Posted on 22 January, 2018 at 10:19 pm
  8. I was a nanny for years. I was very well paid because I was good! My first family had me come one night as a trial sit. They left. I took care of the kids but as the night wore on I started to feel lousy. I had no energy to pick up the toys or do the supper dishes. I laid on the couch and listened to the baby monitor. No one stirred for that I was thankful. They came home and I managed a smile. Took the check and drove home. I got home and had a fever of 103. They said they hired me because I DID NOT CLEAN!!! They wanted someone just for the kids, not a housekeeper! They were so impressed that I did not put on a show they knew I was the one for them. Ha ha ha! I worked for them for 3 years. It was a lovely family. But I agree. As a parent now you need to trust your guy. If in doubt walk away!!! #familyfunlinky
    Tracy Albiero recently posted…Hiking with friendsMy Profile

    Posted on 23 January, 2018 at 3:18 pm
  9. How sad to read, but I’m glad you followed you’re instinct knowing something wasn’t right and that you’ve found good childcare now #familyfun
    Amy – The Rolling Baby recently posted…Leap 5 – The Worst So FarMy Profile

    Posted on 23 January, 2018 at 4:02 pm
  10. we are very fortunate that my wife and I were able to change our work schedules around to avoid this. I can only imagine the challenges #familyfun
    jeremy@thirstydaddy recently posted…Not Everybody SucksMy Profile

    Posted on 24 January, 2018 at 3:03 am
  11. I totally agree! I was lucky that I found a nursery that suited us and our boys enjoyed but also that my mother-in-law has always done the majority of our child care. But I’ve always followed my gut and pulled my son out of a pre school class I didn’t like. Thank you for hosting #FamilyFun

    Posted on 26 January, 2018 at 12:42 pm
  12. It’s so true that gut feeling is so important and it is so hard to find somewhere you trust to take good care of the little ones #familyfunlinky
    Daydreams of a mum recently posted…An evening at HOME ManchesterMy Profile

    Posted on 28 January, 2018 at 10:36 am
  13. That’s awful – I would have shouted from the rooftops about that, that’s totally unacceptable from a nursery. Glad you took him out #familyfunlinky
    Crummy Mummy recently posted…#MySundayPhotoMy Profile

    Posted on 28 January, 2018 at 11:06 am