Whether it’s the first time or the hundredth, dropping your kids off with a caregiver can be hard (for them, or for you)! Below are some tips to make the process just a little bit easier when you’re using Otter.
Make a plan
Will your child be picked up from your home by your Caregiver? Will you be dropping them off yourself? Or is your Caregiver coming to you? Discuss with your match what makes the most sense for both of you. If it doesn’t work later on, you can always change the plan.
Know before you go
Review your plan before you head out the door. Think about what you need to bring or review what you need to confirm with the Caregiver before dropping off the kiddos. Make sure you remember diapers, snacks, bottles, toys, or whatever else your child might need. For those picking up or receiving the child at the start or end of care, make sure you have a form of ID ready so the other person can confirm a safe exchange. Doing this helps keep Otter safe for the entire community!
Wrangling the kids and getting them out the door on time is a feat. Sometimes we’re late despite our best efforts, and that’s ok! Just make sure that the person you’re meeting has a heads up and that everyone is on the same page to reduce miscommunication and confusion.
Talk to your kids about what to expect as well. It can be helpful for them to know who they’re going to be meeting to reduce any anxiety they may have, especially if you are starting a new care arrangement. This might look like talking to your child about how exciting the day ahead is going to be or modeling (demonstrating non-verbally) that you are comfortable with the new Caregiver. Children are perceptive and will likely follow your lead - if you seem comfortable, they will be too!
This can be the toughest part of the drop-off. Depending on the age of your kids, the separation anxiety may be real. Once you say goodbye, try not to linger for too long so that your kids can begin to acclimate. Remind yourself that Otter has worked hard to match you on the qualities that you value most as a parent!