Sudden separation anxiety?? — The Bump
Pre-School

Sudden separation anxiety??

My DS who will be 4 in November has recently been suffering from pretty bad separation anxiety.

He had an incident with a friend that seemed to trigger it. His friend locked him out of the house while he was in the backyard. The mom & I were upstairs and didn't realize what had happened for about 5 minutes. I guess he was calling me and thought I had gone home.

ever since this incident he has become so paranoid that I will leave him or that he's not going to be able to go places with me. I'm a SAHM so he's with me all the time. It's getting to the point where I will get his sister out of the car and in the time it takes me to strap her into the stroller he is hysterically crying in the car thinking that I left him there!!

. I just feel horrible that he's feeling this way and don't know how I can ease his fears. I'm constantly reassuring him and making sure that he knows where I am. Anything more I can be doing? I'm starting to worry that he'll freak out when I take him to preschool. I've been prepping him about it and reminding him that he'll be there with his teachers and friends but that I will drop him of and pick him up, but I'm worried that he'll still get very scared.

. Sorry this got so long. Any suggestions would be great! Or if anyone else has had this happen I'd love to hear that my little guys not alone!!
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Re: Sudden separation anxiety??

  • We went through this and I got a kitchen egg timer and would set it for 3 -4 minutes and hand it to him.  And I moved my heiny and made sure I got back before that timer went off.  Now it's not bad but I will hand my kids my phone and tell them to set the timer for x minutes and they know they have to amuse themselves that long. 
    If you really want to be happy, no one can stop you.

    [IMG]http://i47.tinypic.com/34fg0u1.jpg[/IMG]
  • Maybe he's more upset about going to preschool then what happened at the friend's house.  Something like that wouldn't freak out DD more than for the moment it was happening, but I'm a teacher so she began daycare last year at 2 1/2, for the most part did very well, but drop offs got kind of hard the last few weeks of June.  All summer she's been upset about going to school, she finally told me the teachers yell at her.  I was switching schools anyway for a few issues, so I explain she's going to a school with nice teachers and now she seems to be ok with it and refers to it as the school with teachers who don't yell.

    Maybe I'm cold hearted, but at 4 years old I'd have very little patience for crying the second I leave.  As a SAHM you'll have more time for drop offs, but DD really started to sucker me into 10-15 minute drop offs that I really didn't have time for.  This summer she did swim class and the last few classes she started to give me a hard time.  I just put her down, told her I didn't have time for that, and walked away.  Obviously it probably helped that I was in the bleachers a few feet away, but by the time I got to my seat she was fine.  I plan on doing the same thing at daycare drop offs.  At 3 1/2 years old I really don't think she should be crying like that.  I also plan on telling her she needs to help with her brother, who as 1 1/2 will be crying and I'll feel much worse.  

    In the past for dance classes I have told DD that I need to change her brother's diaper.  It's not a great excuse but she knows I need to take care of it and she goes off and has fun.
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