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I worry she has no playmates

(85 Posts)
Foxglove77 Mon 18-Nov-19 14:17:09

I look after my only GD whilst my DD works full time.

My GD is 3 and there are no other toddlers in our family. We live in a rural area and again no neighbours have toddlers.

We have lots of fun together baking, drawing, crafting and walking etc but I felt it would be nice for her to play with other toddlers. So with DDs agreement we went to a local Mother and Toddler group. GD loved it and quickly made friends. All good.

However the last visit there were toddlers with colds and unfortunately GD caught a nasty cold which she passed onto her parents.

Their jobs are safety critical and they cannot take any form of meds. They also stand to lose attendance allowance if they have any time off.

So I stopped taking GD for a while. Then another group started nearby and I mentioned it. GD picked up on this and really wanted to go. We went and again she enjoyed it. Then I noticed at story time the toddler next to her had a cold and again GD became ill which she passed onto parents.

DD has asked that I don't take her anymore which of course I will respect.

We realize that this will be an issue when she does mix with other school children but she is not due to start infant school for 2 years.

Am I right to worry about her lack of playmates? Any suggestions would be great.

CrumblyMumbly Mon 18-Nov-19 14:28:13

Hi, kids seem to have constant colds and bugs at that age but in some cases it is good as it supposedly makes immunity stronger. My dd loved going to nursery to play games and have fun and it also prepares you for school. Sadly you can't avoid germs and if she doesn't catch colds now...wait until school starts! Obviously you have to respect your dd's wishes and she may change her mind given time - don't worry she is lucky to have a loving grandmother to play with.

Grammaretto Mon 18-Nov-19 14:54:36

It is a thought but did your DD and her partner get the cold the second time?
We used to call them snot transfusions. yuck!
Some folk wont travel on public transport due to catching colds and I must say I hate listening to the orchestra of coughs but we all must build resistence.
Could you childmind for one other on a day when you are caring for your DGC?

wildswan16 Mon 18-Nov-19 15:00:41

I think it is unreasonable of any parent to expect that their child will not catch colds, tummy bugs etc. That is the norm as they grow up and become more immune to the infections. If she doesn't get them now she will certainly spend a lot of time off school when she is five.

However, she is clearly a friendly, happy child as she enjoyed the play groups, so I am sure she will remain so even if she is prevented from attending.

It is ultimately down to the parents to prioritise matters how they wish. I'm unclear what jobs prevent you from taking a paracetamol - which is all you might need for a common cold.

tanith Mon 18-Nov-19 15:05:38

It’s going to have to happen now or in the future that she is going to pick up everything till her immune system builds up, it does seem sad that she has to be friendless.
I would discuss your concerns with your daughter and point out what’s been said here.

Callistemon Mon 18-Nov-19 15:11:14

It always happens as soon as they start at nursery or playgroup, the colds etc but it does build up their immunity which stands them in good stead for when they start school.

I don't understand about her parents not taking medication or losing attendance allowance but it seems a shame not to allow her to mix with other toddlers, particularly as she doesn't have contact with other children in her daily life.

M0nica Mon 18-Nov-19 15:46:56

Yes, I am puzzled by this Their jobs are safety critical and they cannot take any form of meds. They also stand to lose attendance allowance if they have any time off.

If that is the case it probably break all kinds of employment law. If they want to stay infection free, then they shouldn't have had a child.

I had an under 5 life with just a younger sister for company, no other children around until I started school and I think this has contributed to me feeling constantly on the edge of the crowd ever since. Their child's psychological development is as important as her health and physical care and they really need to rethink this ban.

Purpledaffodil Mon 18-Nov-19 15:57:19

I agree with other posters re importance of peer group company and building up immunity. When DGS started nursery he was permanently cold ridden. Being asthmatic too, it was a problem. However GP said he’d had the same problem with his twins, taken them out of nursery to be looked after by grandparents, only to have the same perpetual cold problem when they started school. In this case they missed valuable learning time too. So DGS carried on at nursery and had a robust immune system in time to start school.
Children get minor illnesses, I’m afraid it’s part of the process and isolation is not a good solution imho.

sodapop Mon 18-Nov-19 15:59:50

This is quite usual once children start nursery or school. Like MOnica I'm puzzled by the parents job restrictions. It's a shame for your granddaughter to miss out on socialising with other children Foxglove77 but its not critical at this stage.

trisher Mon 18-Nov-19 16:09:45

Foxglove77 you could try warning your DD that if DGD picks up the bugs now and builds her immunity up she will probably catch less things when she starts primary school. There are so many benefits to getting things over earlier, not missing school work being one of them. As for passing on bugs if you see a child at a playgroup with a cold and your DGD is playing with them you could alert your DD and she could take appropriate measures to prevent them getting it. My DIL has a job which is impossible to do with any cold etc. She has substantial and time consuming processes when her children have colds. They are tedious but seem to work. They include only using a tissue once, always washing your hands or using hand gel after wiping a nose and loads of other things

Daisymae Mon 18-Nov-19 16:15:09

Not much you can do but go along with it. Your gd will get lots of coughs and colds when she does eventually mix with other children. How about a soft play area? Our local garden centre has one? There will always be a chance that she picks something up, not realistic to expect otherwise.

notanan2 Mon 18-Nov-19 16:17:02

Some people think that children must mix with children the exact same age as them to "socialise"

This does not mimic natural socialisation

She is mixing with people and that "socialises" her. I wouldnt worry too much about plonking her in a room filled with exclusively children her age.

Maybe put an ad on netmums meetamum for another gran in your area who has a young GC who might enjoy playdates. That way you can agree to cancel if one of the children has the sniffles?

Foxglove77 Mon 18-Nov-19 16:25:49

Hello again and thanks for the helpful replies.

MOnica the baby wasn't planned but is no less loved or treasured.

Any public transport positions such as pilot, train or tube driver have very strict regulations which are non negotiable.

On the plus side GD gets lots of one to one time. She is very intelligent and has a lovely little personality. Also very clued up on dinosaurs! We are very much looking forward to Christmas this year.

M0nica Mon 18-Nov-19 16:29:09

notanan, No, a child doesn't needn't to be with children exactly the same age, but I do think they need to socialise with other children.

As I said I didn't socialise with other children, apart from a younger sister and I believe strongly that the lack of social skills this left me with have affected me throughout my life.

notanan2 Mon 18-Nov-19 16:32:24

What I am saying Monica is that playgroups are a weird way to socialise anyway. And so long as the child is taken out and about: parks, supermarkets, cafes etc they will encounter people of all ages including children anyway.

And a few playdate contacts make for more meaningful child-child relationships than playgroups, plus are easier rearranged if one is ill

notanan2 Mon 18-Nov-19 16:36:01

There are lots of children out there that have to avoid "snotty" playgroups because they were premature or on meds or have family members with reduced immune systems. The internet may be a good way to meet some like minded playdate contacts who would appreciate mutual cancellations if there's snots etc

notanan2 Mon 18-Nov-19 16:47:21

Not all bug build up a child's immunity. Some weaken it!

If its something you wouldnt appreciate a visitor bringing then it is probably not good for a child either.

Healthy exposure to "normal" bugs = going out and about, playing with mud, meeting people and animals. Normal bacteria . It does not include exposure viruses that make you ill.

There are selfish people out there who wont wait 48hrs after a tummy bug or for c pox to fully scab.

Hithere Mon 18-Nov-19 16:50:32

How do your dd and sil do to avoid the cold, flu and other nasty diseases that plaque every place of employment every year?

As for socializing, your gc will go to school and the issue will be fixed

Hithere Mon 18-Nov-19 16:50:52

Plague not plaque

notanan2 Mon 18-Nov-19 16:52:28

How do your dd and sil do to avoid the cold, flu and other nasty diseases that plaque every place of employment every year?

There is a concentration of selfishness around childhood viruses at playgroups and soft play. Its not a cross section of a normal amount of bugs

trisher Mon 18-Nov-19 17:36:14

notanan2 but much the same could be said about the first year of primary school. Presumably you wouldn't stop a child going there. They are eventually going to encounter those bugs.

notanan2 Mon 18-Nov-19 17:40:31

Not at all. School is much more of a cross section.

Hetty58 Mon 18-Nov-19 17:43:51

I don't think attendance at nursery or playgroup is always necessary for a child. They can be equally happy at home or their granny's house. She can play with others at the park or on trips out anyway so I'd let her parents decide what to do.

trisher Mon 18-Nov-19 17:45:15

What!!?? notanan2 a cross section of what? And what difference does it make?

Foxglove77 Mon 18-Nov-19 17:48:29

Hithere the good points of driving a train mean you always get a seat and you're not exposed to passenger germs.