(Our regular crèche is closed and we had to accept another solution for these 9 days. Grandparents full-time were not an option.)
I was warned by the ladies from our crèche that it may not be a good idea, that the kid will know no one. Still we said we should give it a try and see how things would work out. In case of problems one of us could arrange to stay at home with her.
On the other hand, I remember asking this question (if she would suffer) on a group on Facebook and a father literally dismissing the arguments. He was implying that I should stop considering all the crappy emotional implications and just put the kid in the temporary crèche and that she would have to deal with it.
3 of those 9 days passed. And I know better now… I was not dismissing the emotional implications, just that now I understand them better.
The thing is kids in general like stability and routine. It’s like they are asking for it. When their brain changes every moment, the routine is the only thing stable. Moreover they bond with the main care givers. There is the main attachment between mom / parents and baby and the other forms of attachment with the other adults constantly caring for them. All those adults that the kid sees on daily basis are his form of stability.
When I took my toddler to the temporary crèche and put her in the arms of a totally stranger she was baffled. It’s like I would just put her in the arms of the first lady that passes by our street and leave.
Or, to make a parallel, it’s like you would wake up tomorrow morning and instead of your spouse driving you to your normal work place she / he would drop you in front of a brand new door. There you will find out that you have new colleagues and a new boss and that you still have to deliver like usual although you have no idea what is their schedule. Moreover, they have no idea either about what you like in order to have a nice day. Cool, isn’t it?!
She cried the first day and she was unhappy. Second day was better. I hope the third day went even better.
The best I could do was to spend every little moment at home with her. (OK, I still haven’t gave up to my 20 minutes of interaction with my piggies.) I hope it will attenuate the shock and help her pass easier through these days.
Lesson learned: never dismiss the emotional implications of an event on your child! They do exist. And if you are an emphatic person you will feel as miserable as your kid.
If, on the other hand, you are as empathic as the dad mentioned above, dismiss them. But most probably you will get to a point in the future where you’ll ask yourself what the hack happened and where did you lose the connection with your kid.