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  #1  
Old 08-02-2012, 07:33 AM
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Default Daycare Child Telling Parents Things That Have Them Question Me Constantly

I have a 4yr old dck that has been telling their parents I throw the baby sibling in the bed or knock them down or force the child to nap and reprimand them. So I have had tons of questions from the parent if I abuse their kids or throw them around.

I do no such thing and have NEVER done it nor ever will. I have told the baby to stop throwing her paci out of her bed (baby is a year and thinks its a game but screams bloddy murder at nap time for it even tho baby throws it out ALL THE TIME. I discipline the 4yr old as when that child comes to my home that child doesn't think rules apply to the child (dck is the eldest in my dc of 4 other preschool age children). This dck goes to a "real" preschool once the school year comes as I've changed my schedule and won't be able to accommodate that child anymore (one of the reasons why I changed my schedule). So it's a plus that the child won't be here so much if at all but the sibling might (I have yet to decide if I want to terminate but in light of recent accusations I'm strongly thinking about it).

How have you handled false accusations from children to parents? I know kids misconstru things and see stuff differently but it was not fun to have to hear from a parent that they hear I throw their kid around or force the eldest to do things. Never in all my years have I had a child and parent say things like this. I know I don't do these things yet it makes me REALLY uncomfortable. When confronted I was taken completely aback, turned 100 shades of red and stammered. I had no idea this was coming. This child will sometimes tell me things like "don't yell at me or tell me to do something, that's not nice" and then I take a deep breath and tell the child "if I didn't have to repeat myself 5 times maybe you'd hear me ask the right way the first 4times!"

This child has always been my difficult one and it got worse when the baby came along.

Now I know the saying "if you're not guilty it shouldn't bother you" but when it comes to kids and calls of abuse that's not something anyone takes lightly and I'm real nervous with whatever I do and say. I don't want to spend the next month explaining myself or have them think every bump and bruise the baby will come home with is a sure sign I'm being less than careful with their kid.

I keep logs on what happens here at my house on each kid and I'm not licensed but the last thing I need is CPS doing a check up on my daycare to make sure things are ok. I've never had a complaint from my other kids or parents and I've had most of these kids 2yrs!

I have an open door policy and I'm glad the parent came to me instead of assuming but its been eating away at me for 3 days now and I'm at a loss of what to do.

Has anyone delt with this before? Do you sit with the child and have a talk and tell them that there is in no way you'd Hurt another child? That discipline is given when needed? That if they see something they feel is wrong they ask about it?

I know they are young and see things way differently but we teach kids to go to their parent when something is wrong and I don't want to be called out on everything I do as its the way I do things in MY home.

I just hated the "so and so said you did this" accusation and how sickening it made me feel. I wanted to close my doors that day and say "nope isn't worth the risk to stay home with my son, I'll go back to work at an office".
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Old 08-02-2012, 07:40 AM
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I wouldnt keep either of these kids.

I would call licensing and give them a heads up. I might even call CPS because maybe someone is being too rough with this child and that is causing him/her to tell stories about you?

Then give the parents a term letter letting them know that obviously the oldest child is misrepresenting something he/she is seeing at daycare but you feel uncomfortable keeping a family when you feel that the issues have caused the parents to doubt your care. It is better for them to move on to a provider that they can trust.

You are in a dangerous spot here.....keeping a child that is already telling false stories of your care, and knowing that the parents at least partially believe him.
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Old 08-02-2012, 07:42 AM
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Ugh, I know what you mean! I've never abused a child either, but I still constantly worry about being accused of something. Although I never have been accused of anything in the many years I've been caring for children.

Here's one that happened the other day: Dcg is potty training so I place her on the seat. The back of her thigh gets pinched between the seat and the rim and she screams , "you hurt my bum" and proceeds to cry. Sickening feeling right away.

When mom came I immediately told her what happened. Why do we feel guilt when there's nothing to feel guilty about? Must be my Catholic upbringing.
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Old 08-02-2012, 07:51 AM
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I feel that in this circumstance I would feel as though I had to term those children. If the parents are beliving their child and don't feel 100% confident in your abilities to properly care for their children - that the working relationship is over. I will not be stepping on eggshels and try to go above and beyond what you know to be proper care just to apease a child and hope he doesn't report any misconstrued information to his parents.

It doesn't seem like a good situation. GL!
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Old 08-02-2012, 07:55 AM
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I would terminate because this is a huge trust issue. The parent could have clarified what the child said instead of accusing you of wrongdoing.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:07 AM
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I would terminate too, since he's blatantly telling lies that could destroy your life.

You can't blame the parents for asking you, or believing him. If they didn't listen to him, they would be bad parents.

I dropped a kid years ago for telling her parents "SHe makes us wipe our mouth on our shirt" "She won't let me eat" "She won't let me go outside". ETC.... every day, the mom would come in with a very rude accusation. So, I said "Friday will be her last day". And, it felt very good.

I HAVE said to the kids "Hold on, let me go grab him". (meaning pick him up) and they said "You GRABBED him??????" So, now I know "grab" is a bad word to them. I used to say "let me throw him in bed" too....but, figured that didn't sound very nice.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:15 AM
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Ugh, what a stressful situation!

I totally get 4 year olds and story-telling. My 4 year old dcb has been saying that a bruise on his leg today is because he got eaten by a giraffe at the zoo last night . Note: He wasn't at the zoo last night, our zoo doesn't have giraffes, and he's definitely not eaten!!

I think I can see where your 4 year old mangled the "Don't throw the paci again, sib!" into "you throw the sib"--he was probably trying to tell his parents that you told her not to throw it and it got garbled, then they made some assumptions based and he just kind of agreed. <--excellent example of why you have to be really careful what kinds of questions you ask. BUT I'd say if the parents are bringing this up to you in an accusatory way, it's a sign that they may not really trust you regardless of the stories.

I can also see, "I HAVE to take a nap, and I get in TROUBLE" <---two unrelated things but he could easily spin them in a way that sounds awful, specially if the parents are already distrustful (for their own cockamamie reasons).

That being said...yeah, wouldn't keep them either. But terming them might make you look guilty, and the main fault lies with the parents for being well, whatever.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:39 AM
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If a parent REALLLLLY truly believes their child is being abused in their childcare, WHY WHY WHY, on God's green earth, would they continue to take their child there? Regardless of whether its true or not- if they THINK its true, what would motivate them to bring the child back? If I thought for a SECOND that my child was being mistreated in someone else's care, I would be DONE!! I have a parent who recently accused me of letting her child go an entire day in wet underwear because he was *kind of* wet when he left. He was dry all day!! OMG!! As if I'd let a child run around in wet pants all day. GROSS!!!!! This is the same parent who, after I tell her that her child JUST used the toilet, she takes him out to her car and lets him pee in my bushes on the side of the driveway. I'm sure my neighbors are wondering what kind of show I'm running here. WTH is wrong with these people?!! I have absolutely ZERO respect for parents who try everything possible to make you look like a horrible provider simply because they feel guilty that they are letting someone else raise their child. If they don't appreciate the care you provide for their child, they shouldn't be leaving them with ANYONE other than themselves. I'm so sick of these kinds of parents!! Okay, now you know the week I've had- done venting. I hope you have a stronger backbone than I do because I have plenty to complain about but its almost impossible for me to say anything to the parents. Thus, the venting.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:40 AM
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How did I handle false accusations from a child..........I termed the family with no notice. I called Mom at work and said come pick up this child now. I still miss this family, 6 years later.
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:06 AM
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How did I handle false accusations from a child..........I termed the family with no notice. I called Mom at work and said come pick up this child now. I still miss this family, 6 years later.
Wow! How old was the child and what kinds of accusations were they making?

I always ask my daughter how her day was, what she had for lunch, things like that. I take her answers very lightly as she just turned 3 and is still learning concepts of time and clear communication but once or twice there's been something that's worth a quick follow up with the provider (she once told me every day for a week she had mac&cheese for lunch, right after starting with a new provider). I didn't think that was really the case but it was reassuring to hear the real story from the caretaker, kwim?
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:50 AM
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My four year old dcb lies like crazy! (I don't even think it's intentional, I think he just stretches the truth or really doesn't understand the difference between truth/lie or real/make believe yet) he told his Mom he slept ALL DAY once and she came in asking how long he slept yesterday because she said he didn't eat anything at all. In actuality he fell asleep during lunch and I had to carry him to his mat and then when I woke him up I said "C'mon sleepy head you can't sleep all day, I don't want you to miss snack!" I told the Mom that he does this to me/in reference to them on a regular basis. One time he told me Daddy threw him down the stairs, one time he fell off of an elephant and broke his arm, one time Grandma pushed him in the pool and his head went underwater and he died I could go ON AND ON!).
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:52 AM
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Oh, and I would probably term. Weird, if she is genuinely concerned for her child, why would she bring them back?
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  #13  
Old 08-02-2012, 11:37 AM
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Thanks guys, you've been helpful and made me feel a little better about my thought process. No one likes getting accused but as a parent i also understand 100% the dcp questioning to make sure their mind is at ease.

This older child is in my care for a few more weeks so I'm hoping to stick it out and keep the sibling on the part time basis. The family has always been great but as the older sibling has gotten, well, older the child has just become an influence that I no longer think fits my daycare.

Other parents have just started to mention they can tell when so and so was there for the day, that their child acts and talks differently.

It's just hard to shake the feeling of being second guessed but I'm pretty sure they trust me. I don't ever want to do anything that betrays a parents trust though, it's like a stake to the heart feeling like they'd think you'd hurt their littles. I have a 3yr old myself, it kills me if I even remotely had to second guess or question his care (before I stayed home he was in a wonderful home daycare) and I thankfully never had to. Can't imagine how this parent felt to even have to ask.

I just feel so poopie yucky about it.
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Old 08-02-2012, 11:43 AM
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Sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen to me....I would give them the boot!
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Old 08-02-2012, 11:53 AM
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I would terminate. I was closed for 2 months because of a false accusation. Nothing to fool around with. This kid is getting attention for his "tattles" and enjoys it. The parents are not trusting you enough....bad combination.
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Old 08-02-2012, 12:02 PM
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I would tell dcm that there is a trust issue an you can no longer care for them. Tell them you have already called your licensor -do this- and you welcome them coming in to check things out.
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Old 08-02-2012, 12:20 PM
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Children can definitely misconstrue the things we say, and they can also tell fibs to gain attention from their parents. I've had both of these things happen.

I have one very picky eater, that never eats anything and both her and her parents are obssessed about food. How much she consumes, what she is offered, etc. When the kids are asking me for help with something, and I am obviously busy (changing diaper, cooking) I often say, "I'm not an octopus, I only have two arms." The kids think it's hysterical and I encourage them to observe when my two arms are busy. As it turns out, this picky eater asked me what I was making for lunch (if it's not chic. nuggets she will pout), at the exact same time I was informing another child of my non-octopus status. I got a call that evening from a very concerned parent to share that picky eater was upset because I was making the kids eat octopus.

Obviously, it was a misunderstanding. We ate sandwiches for lunch. But I was shocked that a parent would phrase this type of misunderstanding in the form of an accusation. Peoples insecurities and issues can be deflected onto a provider in such a way, that it puts both parties in such an awkward position. It usually doesn't take long for me to figure out what type of "issues" a parent has. Poop issues. Sleep issues. If we only shared HALF of the things kids say about what goes on at home, the tables would be turned.

My response to the ridiculous accusation that I was feeding octopus arms to the children?? "Don't worry DCM, lucky for DCK we only serve octopus on Fridays when DCK is not here."
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Old 08-02-2012, 12:46 PM
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Lying about things is a pretty normal thing for kids around age 4. They are just getting a firm grasp on reality, make believe and fantasy.

I wouldn't necessarily term because of the child making things up, but may consider terming depending on how mom reacts or takes the lies....kwim?

If the mom is believing her child versus you, there will NEVER be that level of trust needed to have a good solid relationship with this family and I would term for sure.

If mom is simply telling you for the sake of letting you know what child has been saying but isn't at all "double checking" or questioning your actions, I would have a discussion with daycare child AND parent at the same time about lying and why it isn't ok and what kinds of things can happen if you continue to tell tall tales.

Mom's behavior/actions would be the deciding factor for me in regards to terming or not.

I have a 4 year old who lies frequently about about a lot of things but because his mom and I have a trusting relationship, whenever he says anything not true, I will say "Well, let's tell mom when she gets here and see what she thinks" and the child will usually fess up that his story was made-up.

It helps that he can see mom and I are on the same page and there is no opportunity for him to "play" either one of us.
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Old 08-02-2012, 03:41 PM
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I agree with BlackCat on this one (as usual ) - it's time for a frank discussion with dcm as well as the older child. The result of that conversation would determine whether I would term or not.
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Old 08-02-2012, 04:52 PM
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This is a hard one I know. I've had kids tell their parents things that are absoluetly not true and even though the parents don't believe them, it still bothers me.

Three times kids have told parents that I have been drinking beer! I don't even drink- One kid asked one time if I was having a beer when I opened up a pepsi.

I had some tell their parents I spank them! Never, never, never!

Another one was I don't allow them to ever play with the toys! Thats why I have a room/tubs/outside full of them. This was awhile ago and they did leave because of this and another issue. Now the parent is the principal of my sons school. Always acts like nothing was ever wrong.
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  #21  
Old 08-02-2012, 06:01 PM
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I had a dcg tell her mom SEVERAL times over the 4 years I took care of her that I put soap in her mouth. The mom asked me about it & I said no, absolutely not. She continued to bring her here. The little girl would say it over & over and I kept telling her saying things like that wasn't nice & she could get me in trouble for saying things that aren't TRUE. Nothing really ever became of it.

I did have a situation once where a daycare mom thought her child had been bitten in my care (child was too young to talk) & it was a HUGE ordeal. Very painful, scary, emotional...the family went off the deep end & started rumors about me on facebook & called the local resource & referral agency I'm registered with & made a complaint. They even convinced another family to stop coming here. It was HORRIBLE. I still have anxiety about it I tried to hold my head up high & let people know that I am a professional & those "bites" certainly never happened while in my care. I ended up going to court with the 2nd family that left. Super long story...but it was an awful situation to be in, mostly because I knew it was a false accusation. It just about ruined my business & my self-esteem at the same time. I'm just thankful I had God (and the truth) on my side & those people eventually left me alone.

Good luck to you in whatever you choose! Just don't forget to hold your head high & be proud of the business you are running
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Old 08-02-2012, 06:06 PM
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I would call the kid out in front of the parents and let the parents see that the child is not telling the truth.

I would also only tell the parents one time my side of the story and expect them to believe me. If they kept questioning me, then I would have to let them go.

Kids this age tell all kinds of stories...like one of my DCK telling me that her uncle ran over her head with a golf cart.............She left out that it was her Dolls head that was left on the ground...................

So I would talk to the parents only once and after that if they keep questioning your words then I would have to say good-bye!!
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
If a parent REALLLLLY truly believes their child is being abused in their childcare, WHY WHY WHY, on God's green earth, would they continue to take their child there? Regardless of whether its true or not- if they THINK its true, what would motivate them to bring the child back? If I thought for a SECOND that my child was being mistreated in someone else's care, I would be DONE!! I have a parent who recently accused me of letting her child go an entire day in wet underwear because he was *kind of* wet when he left. He was dry all day!! OMG!! As if I'd let a child run around in wet pants all day. GROSS!!!!! This is the same parent who, after I tell her that her child JUST used the toilet, she takes him out to her car and lets him pee in my bushes on the side of the driveway. I'm sure my neighbors are wondering what kind of show I'm running here. WTH is wrong with these people?!! I have absolutely ZERO respect for parents who try everything possible to make you look like a horrible provider simply because they feel guilty that they are letting someone else raise their child. If they don't appreciate the care you provide for their child, they shouldn't be leaving them with ANYONE other than themselves. I'm so sick of these kinds of parents!! Okay, now you know the week I've had- done venting. I hope you have a stronger backbone than I do because I have plenty to complain about but its almost impossible for me to say anything to the parents. Thus, the venting.
This story took place 16 years ago...My own daughter... (she will turn 18 in a few weeks)... was approximately 2...
I had a little girl in my daycare group.. slightly younger.... 18-20 months old.. walking..
We had been playing outside ... I lived on a cul de sac in a quiet neighborhood.. I had a very long driveway...and we would frequently ride toys on the driveway..
An older child's parent arrives.. boy... 5 years old..
He could not find an item he had brought to care that day..
I take all the children inside...with this parent... in order to search for the missing item..
After locating the missing item... I call all the children to return outside..... the small girl is stepping out the front door... my daughter rushes up from behind and shoves past her... knocking the little girl flat on her face and hands and knees... The daycare mom of the older boy rushes over to her... scoops her up to evaluate the injuries... she is WAILING of course... we survey the damange.. determine there are no scratches or scrapes... then this mom hands the wailing child to me.. and says.. she has a poopy diaper...I call all the children back inside.. as this parent and her son leave...
I take the wailing girl to the changing table and begin to change her poopy diaper... moments later.. the mother of this wailing child arrives...I had an unlocked open door policy.. so she stepped in to the daycare room with this stressed look on her face and said.. What is wrong??? why is she screaming... ?
When the child sees her mom.. she starts wailing even LOUDER.. and tries to get up off the changing table..
I tell the child.. lay still just another minute and I'll have you changed and ready to see mom...
Meanwhile.. I glance up at the mom and begin to tell her the story of what happened...
Only.. I abreviate it somewhat... for time..
I say... we were walking out the front door to play.. and she got knocked down in the doorway...
First thing she says..
You were INSIDE when I arrived..
Yes.. we had come inside to look for something for another child that was leaving... and we were just headed back out a few minutes ago when it happened...
Meanwhile.. I finish changing the diaper on this wailing.. flailing kid... and I hand her over to her mom...
Her mom started soothing her... I called all the other kids and said.. Ok everyone.. let's head back outside to play..
She leaves.. but seemed very unhappy..
I mention this to the other parent... the mom of the boy...
The one that had actually been there when it occured...
I tell her about the mom's reaction.. how she really seemed upset.. as though I had done something to the child to make her cry..
This first mom.. the witness... says.. well my word... tell her I was there.. tell her she can ask me to talk to her about it..
Well.. I didn't..
The next day the mom of the little girl brought her in for care.. I was busy with other parents... she was in.. dropped off child.. and back out.. so I just decided not to worry too much about it..
The mom of the little girl had always seemed a little stand offish anyway.. so I just let it go..
Well.. several weeks pass...and one day the first mom.. of the older boy... the 'witness'.. comes in to drop her son off...and she tells me..
Last night.. when son and I were at Walmart...The other mom of the little girl was there.. Son spoke to little girl in grocery cart...and mom asked .. how do you know little girl.. First mom of son says... oh they go to daycare together...
This mom says.. oh.. do you mind if I ask your son a question.. ?
First mom.. perplexed...says...sure.. go ahead..
she looks at son... 5 year old boy.. and says.. does Tammy ever do anything to you at daycare? like spank you.. or is she mean to you???
or the other kids??
This little boy absolutely LOVED ME... and his mom also.. AND he was 5..
He looked at this mom like she had LOST HER MIND...he said... NO!.. I love Tammy.. she is nice to me.. she doesn't do mean things to any of us..
First mom.. of son.. is astonished at this mom .. she immediately KNEW why she had asked him that... and she was SHOCKED at the realization..
This child had continued to attend care every single day.. FOR WEEKS... and all that time.. this mom of little girl actually thought that I was being mean to her child... that I had done SOMETHING to her child to make her cry...
First mom was too flabbergasted to even come up with a response...
she confessed later that she should have TOLD that mom that she had been there that afternoon...that she is actually the one that picked up little girl when she initially got knocked down.. that she is the one that handed the wailing child to me in order for me to change the poopy diaper..
BUT.. she didn't.. she just numbly walked away...and then told me the story of the encounter the following day..
I instantly made the decision to term this parent..
I was speachless...
She arrived that afternoon for pick up.. and I had several other parents there at the same time..
She walks over to me..
Hands me a check.. and says.. little girl will not be returning to your care...
I said.. I think that is best for all of us...
I spoke with FIRST MOM... of son... and she told me about seeing you last night.. and what you asked the son...I am shocked that you thought I had done something to your child.. but I'm even more shocked that you thought that.. and yet continued to bring your child to my daycare every day for the past several weeks..
Now remember...there were other parents picking their children up..
She FLIPPED OUT.. she screamed.. I KNOW SOMETHING HAPPENED TO HER THAT DAY... SHE WAS SCREAMING when I arrived to pick her up....
Now she has the attention of all kids.. all parents..
I say... Yes.. I told you exactly what happened to her that day...
She said yeah.. I know what you told me.. but you weren't OUTSIDE when I arrived.. you were all inside..
I said.. I told you that day.. we had BEEN OUTSIDE... came in to help son find a lost item.. and as we were walking back out.. my daughter rushed up from behind.. shoved past your little girl...and knocked her flat..
Other mom was here.. picking up son.. and was actually the one that picked up your child... you can call her.. ask her...
She said.. no thanks.. I don't need to talk to her...
we are not going to return to your daycare..
I just stood there.. I said.. I think that will be great... but.. if you suspected that I had done something to your child.. I can't IMAGINE why you would have continued to drop her off here for daycare every day since then...

I fully expected to hear from child care licensing over this issue..
I contacted my licensing rep myself and told her the story.. gave her first mom's contact info in case she wanted to verify..but.. there was never any report on it.. they basically just left... There's no telling who she went out and told the story too.. I never heard through the grapevine.. but.. who knows...
The whole thing was ridiculous...and it's just sad that a parent would put their child at risk like that.. and yet act OUTRAGED weeks later...
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  #24  
Old 08-03-2012, 11:59 AM
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Countrygal Countrygal is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Wisconsin
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Well, it's a bad situation no matter what, IMO.

I just had a family leave - part of the reason is that dcg was doing this exact thing, only I DIDN'T KNOW IT because they never talked to me about any of it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HUH????????

This dcg was also telling her "stories"(lies) about my dgs who is the oldest and it is his house. But she told all kinds of things on him. Again, they never talked to me about it........................

I guess at least they're talking to you. I think I'd just come right out and ask if they feel comfortable with you watching her, and if they don't I'd offer to help them find a new situation. I think that would show them that you weren't guilty - after all, how much more could you do???

IMO - I wouldn't want her around.

One other thing, I'd document EVERYTHING!! I didn't know the dcg was doing this, but you do. Document every scratch, every discipline, etc. Just to CYA. Can't hurt anything.
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