Help! Bathtime — The Bump
September 2015 Moms

Help! Bathtime

My LO always loved bath time! She loves going in the pool, ocean, and playing with her water table. We went on vacation in August and gave her baths in the tub where we stayed, which she hated. We thought maybe it was just because it was a different place. However, it has continued at home and only gotten worse! She screams every time I put her in bath. She also stands up, so I'm trying to hold her and wash her. She has slipped once because of that - didn't get hurt but scared her which I'm sure just made it worse. Tonight she screamed even when I put her in tub with no water (to see if it was water). She screamed for 15 minutes even when I went in with her just to sit in tub.

I usually make her stay in for 5 minutes so I'm not reinforcing screaming = get out, but it also breaks my heart and I don't let it past that. There are plenty of fun bath toys and I've even gotten in the tub with her - nothing is working. I also bought something so water and soap don't get in her face when rinsing her hair.  Please help! Anyone gone through this? Any tips? I hope it's just a phase :( 

Re: Help! Bathtime

  • We have bathtime problems though they are a little different.  Do you have a bathmat? I've found it really helpful in dealing with the slipping in the tub.  My little guy is a stander as well so I prefer just using a mat to constantly trying to sit him down.  

    Other options to try for a while might be just to wash her out of the bath for a little bit or to try and see if she will take a shower with you.  My kids love the shower and whenever we all 3 need to get cleaned up I tend to just go that route. Bathmat and toys on the floor and towels on the floor outside in the bathroom to prevent slips in there.  There is some in and out (our shower is open with no door and floor level so its inevitable) but they have fun and we all get clean.   
  • We had a couple times where my son stood and fell and coughed on water, he also got freaked out and cried. Once, the following bath, I actually got in with him and did his usual bath routine and he seemed soothed and happy about bathing again.  I havent had to do it again and he seems back to normal now. Hope that helps.
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  • Since our LO outgrew his baby bathtub, we've been using a plastic rectangular laundry basket in the tub with the usual holes in the side, then fill that and the tub up with water and put our son and his toys in the laundry basket. It basically confines him to a smaller space since he's still so little for the huge tub, and he's not tempted to crawl around as much since space is limited.

    It's worth trying if the issue is being scared of the tub - the smaller, more confined setting might make her feel more secure. You could always let her play in the laundry basket outside of the tub with no water first so she's familiar with it, then try it out in the tub. We plan to continue using the basket until he outgrows it.

    Also, introducing some totally new bath toys as soon as she gets in might help.

    Good luck!
  • Have you tried taking a bath with her? My LO does a lot better with baths when I'm in there with him.
  • My son all of a sudden is very unhappy with baths he either needs to stand and hates getting his head or face wet not sure if it's developmental 
  • I was also going to recommend getting in with her, playing some games, singing songs and making it a new, fun experience for her.
  • Thanks ladies! We tried new toys and a smaller tub but those didn't work. The last two nights I've bathed with her and she has been better!! :) No screaming or crying. She'll start on my lap and then I'll get her to sit in tub and play for a bit.m, while I'm still in it. I'm hoping she'll get used to it again and then I can fade out my being in there. Thanks for all the tips/advice!! 
    jen83mnNehouston
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