February 2013 Moms

Separation Anxiety?

Lately whenever I put LO down (not necessarily down to sleep, just down, i.e., not holding her), she gets super upset and starts crying.  I don't know how this happened, but I'm worried that I've spoiled her, and just in time for her to go to daycare.  It's kind of a nightmare.  I don't know what to do.  I go back to work in two weeks and on Monday we start our trial week of daycare.  I'm so worried that she's going to frustrate the daycare workers because her crying is incessant unless I'm holding her.  Suggestions?

Re: Separation Anxiety?

  • Most daycare workers are very experienced with dealing with kids going through separation anxiety and know just what to do. Nearly all kids go through it at some point and at different intensities. You might actually be surprised...once you are out of the room and no where in sight, your LO might calm completely down and be totally fine until you return. With my DD, she was seemingly inconsolable when I went to leave her with anyone. Once I was gone and out of sight though, I would get texts saying "shes totally fine! Once you left she calmed right down and is playing happily!" This happens quite a bit with kids I've found. Its good your doing the trial week to get your LO used to new surroundings. By the end of the week, you never know...LO may surprise you and be very easy to hand off. A couple tips I've found is to always hand them off to the same person each time so they get a feeling of routine and develop and good relationship with their caregiver. And never sneak away. Always do a short good-bye routine...hug, kiss, I love you and "mommy will be back soon. mommy will always come back." then out the door your go. Eventually they get the message that yes, mommy will come back and this is a safe place. Thats where most of the separation anxiety comes from. The feeling that mommy might never come back. Just be consistent and the both of you will be fine :)
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  • I worried abou daycare too since my DD is also very needy. But the great thing about daycare teachers is that they are experienced in dealing with babies, and ever since starting daycare, my DD has been sooo much better at playing on her own. Day care teachers are magical wonderful people! Don't worry, it is their job to take care of babies and yours is not the first or only one with separation anxiety, they will know what to do and your baby will be fine and learn to love it!
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  • Both of your replies are so great and have really put my mind at ease.  Many thanks!!
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