How can I get my ten month baby unspoiled?
MOST HELPFUL POSTS
Krista - posted on 07/12/2011
She's not spoiled. It's impossible TO spoil a baby that young.
The reason why she's crying and wanting you is because she's undergoing a very normal process called "separation anxiety". Here's some info on it:
Before 8 months, infants are so new to the world that they have little knowledge of what is ordinary and what may be dangerous, so new situations or experiences seem usual, and not frightening.
In normal development, during this early period the infant becomes familiar with the home environment, and feels comfortable when parents or other known caretakers are present. After this time, lack of familiarity often produces fear because the infant recognizes that something unusual is going on.
From 8 - 14 months, children often become frightened when they meet new people or visit new places. They recognize their parents as familiar and safe. When separated from their parents, particularly when away from home, they feel threatened and unsafe.
Separation anxiety is a normal developmental stage. It helped keep our ancestors alive and helps children learn how to master their environment.
It usually ends when the child is around 2 years old. At this age, toddlers begin to understand that parents may be out of sight now, but will return later. There is also a normal desire to test their independence.
To get over separation anxiety, children must:
Feel safe in their home environment
Trust people other than their parents
Trust that their parents will return
So, your instinct might be to "break" her of it, but in order to deal with separation anxiety, the best approach is to be gentle and reassuring. Games of peekaboo can help your daughter learn that even if you temporarily disappear, you always come back. Keeping her in your arms when introducing her to new people, instead of just immediately plunking her onto someone else's lap, will reassure her that she is safe and will allow her to warm up to the new person. It makes sense when you think about it: we often just hand a baby over to an auntie or cousin or friend. But your kid doesn't know that person. How is she supposed to know that this person is safe? She doesn't, so she freaks out.
Be gentle, and encourage her, but don't push too hard. She'll grow out of it.
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Krista - posted on 07/12/2011
And keep in mind that some kids are just naturally more reserved. My son is one of them. Like his father, he's not naturally outgoing (unlike me, who could go up to the Queen of England and start chit-chatting). It takes him a little while to warm up to new people. So I don't push him, because that just makes it worse. I let him stick with me, and show by my facial expressions and body language that I know and like this person, and usually within 10 minutes, he's smiling at them and showing them his toy cars.
Kids have their own personalities, independent of ours, and it's something we have to remember.
Elfrieda - posted on 07/12/2011
To add to what Krista said, one way to "introduce" people to the baby is to make them part of a game with her. My son liked me to swing him up to the new person's face (they say "boo" or "hi" or "peek") and then away again a couple of times, ending up with me swinging him up and into their arms. He didn't have a bad case of separation anxiety, so it might not work for your daughter, but maybe it's worth a try. :)
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