single mom

I’m done.

I really didn’t want to rant, but whatever.

I’m done with Head Start. They can suck it. If they were trying to get rid of my annoying complaints and bitchy emails, they have succeeded. Its not worth it to fight them anymore. They are making my life a living hell, and I’m over their sloppy, unorganized, bureaucratic mess of a so-called childcare organization.

LB transitioned to the preschool class the day she turned three. No easing her into the new surroundings, just “take her there on Monday.” The new teacher had no clue we were coming. No one even bothered to tell her she was getting a new kid in her class.

By Friday I had already received a call from the new class: “There was a child diagnosed with Whooping Cough on Tuesday, and since you haven’t gotten your daughter vaccinated, we felt we had to call you personally. You need to decide what you want to do.”

Well thanks for telling me on FRIDAY. What the hell could I do? Thanks for letting me know that this kid had been sick all week, and my daughter had been playing with him. Thanks for implying that I’m the evil mother who is guilty of child abuse for not vaccinating her kid.

Yesterday, I drop LB off at daycare. By noon they had called me: “Your daughter may not return to Head Start until she has been tested for Whooping Cough and a doctor has written a note describing she has been treated.”

I took her to the doctor where they stuck a wire up he nose and swabbed the inside of both sides until blood started pouring out. LB screamed and cried and clung to me, saying she wasn’t sick. The doctor shook her head at me, like I had brought this torture upon myself. She told me the test results wouldn’t be back until Friday.  Until then I had to keep my child quarantined, start antibiotics immediately and basically deal with the consequences of my irresponsible decision not to vaccinate.

Suddenly I was a criminal. My daughter was a carrier monkey. I was facing at least a week of missed work, and a birthday party where I had exposed dozens of people to a possible disease.

I’m angry. I’m defensive. I’m stressed. I’m panicked.  But I’m not a bad mom. I shouldn’t be feeling this right now. I’m smart and thoughtful and reasonable, and I’m furious that I’ve been reduced to questioning myself by an organization run by policy, not humanity.

I have an appointment on Thursday with the daycare here at my job. Its $400 /month  more expensive than Head Start, but at this point, I don’t care. They have shown me that they don’t respect the employees, the parents, and now, the kids. They think the low income population should bow down and kiss the ground they walk on because they are offering such a vital service to us.

Well guess what?

Shitty service is still shitty service, no matter what demographic you work with.

I’m not going to be thankful for the way I’ve been treated just because I make less than $25,000 a year. Head Start thinks because we live in such a ridiculously overpriced town, with such a high demand for childcare, we should thank our lucky stars they exist. I’m done with them. I am taking my daughter away from the friends she has been with since the age of 9 months. I’m willingly paying 3 times as much for the care Head Start should be providing.

I’m done. They can celebrate all they want. I’m not questioning myself anymore.


6 thoughts on “I’m done.”

  1. I really don’t know what to say here. You made the right decision? you already know you did. You are a good mom? Ditto-you know you are. Just know I am thinking of you and hoping that the transition to a new place is smooth for both of you, and that you will find just what you are looking for. And then i will say that the head start people are asshats.


  2. This really sucks. Sorry you’re having to deal with it (and LB too). I don’t blame you at all for changing daycares.

    Oh, and I know this isn’t really the issue for you at the moment, but I hate how all the daycares I’ve known just throw the kids into a new class with no warning to the parents. No easing them into it. It makes me angry everytime. But after three daycares, I’m starting to think it’s normal. Or I just pick crappy daycares…


  3. I’m beginning to think there’s nothing harder to fight than education-related administrations and the like. Of the battles that I’ve been through, that I’ve seen other people go through, almost none of them have had a happy ending. I’m SO sorry you and LB had to go through all of this. Wishing you the best with the new day care.


  4. I say this with kindness: DAYCARES PRETTY MUCH SUCK. I mean, there are good points and bad points to them, but what you described here? I don’t think it’s indicitive of Head Start alone. I think you’ll find that at many daycares.

    The have rules and regulations and so forth and so on b/c they are And maybe things are more lax in Durango (You crazy west coasters!!), but my son couldn’t even get INTO a daycare w/out vaccinations. So I imagine you’ll prbly encounter THAT particular crappiness every where you go…?

    That said I realized with my son’s current daycare, that I had to forgo a lot of the “learning” he was getting at his old place for the compassion at the new place. It’s more like fun playtime with people he adores–they worry about a kid’s well-being, NOT that they have recited their ABCs and had circle time before 10:30 am. And I’m perfectly OK with that. He’ll be in school for plenty of upcoming years. Maybe you would be better off looking for a place like that? (That said, I still have to deal with the “Your kid had a runnyy diaper and can’t come back for 24 hours” and the “Our AC is broken, we don’t know when it will be fixed, come get your kid.” nonsense…)

    Poor LB and the nose. I winced when I read that. Give her a hug and a kiss for me.


  5. Get rid of you is exactly what they wanted to accomplish with the whooping cough stuff– everything I know about that particular organization is that it generally entails backbiting and passive-aggressive bullshit. This makes me so angry, I can’t even tell you. Using policy to grind people down instead of protect them is cruel. I sincerely– SINCERELY– hope you find a better situation with the work daycare. And I hope this kind of crap stops being an issue not just for you but for all the families who rely on Head Start.
    Seriously, you can/should talk to the Herald.


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