Q&A: Changing daycare providers

I'm out of the city today, so if anyone signs up for More Moxie today or tomorrow, you won't get the first assignment until I get back early Friday morning, but you will get it!

Libby writes:

"My son is 13 months old, and he's beenat the same in-home daycare since he was 6 months old (which is when I went back to work).  He does very well there, and the babysitter is a sweet, sweet mom of 3 other kids.  But there were some disadvantages that made us decide that we should move him.  One is that it is really out of my way to go to her house.  I lose about 80 mins a day driving him to and from daycare, and my husband can never help with the drop off and pickup.  She watches some neighborhood kids after school, and we are not comfortable with the # of kids she is watching during those hours.  She also has a 'special needs' son, who is becoming more of a handful the older he gets.  And, overall my husband has never been comfortable with him there.  He prefers the structure and organization of a daycare center.  So we made the decision to move him in 2 months to a really good daycare center closer to home.  

I've been a wreck ever since.  I feel like I broke up with her, and I've been crying for 2 days.  I know she really cares about my son, and it breaks my heart to move him.  And I know that she really needs the money, so I feel like I'm causing her stress - which I know shouldn't be my concern, but I can't help it.  This is my first child, and I feel so torn up about taking him away from the only caregiver he has known besides us.  I truly believe that moving him is the right decision in the long run - my gut tells me it's time for a change.  But, I never expected all the tears over this transition.  I'm sure people have survived this type of move before - am I crazy for being so broken up over this? "

You are sooooo not crazy for being broken up over this. Childcare is super-important. If you're not happy with your child's care it affects your whole life. And making a major change like this is stressful for everyone.

But it sounds like you've thought it through from all the angles, and moving is the right decision for you. This is probably a good age--15-month-olds tend to be very social, and he'll adapt quickly.

I hope she can find someone else to fill your son's spot to keep up her income. Even though you know it shouldn't be your first concern, it still makes you feel bad.

My kids' amazing nanny left on Thursday, so we're going through some grieving here, too. It hurts, to know that things will be different for your child and that they'll miss someone who loves them. And you'll miss her, too, because she shared your son with you.

Does anyone have any tips to help Libby with this? I'm not worried that her son will have trouble transitioning, but it sounds like she could use some words of encouragement.