Help!! 7 month old with major separation anxiety

Jenna - posted on 08/19/2009 ( 12 moms have responded )

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My daughter is 7 months old with separation anxiety. HELP!!! She doesnt want to go to anyone besides me. No one can babysit her without her crying/screaming the whole time. Not even my sisters or even husband. I think it might be partially my husbands fault because he doesnt hold her much, doesn't feed her, doesnt change diapers, and cant put her to bed at night. I dont know what to do my 7 month old's separation anxiety is so bad. I cant get out of the house without her or having whoever is watching her get stressed. Any suggestions on getting her able to be watched by others??

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Jinglebones - posted on 08/19/2009

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Sweetie - welcome to the world of motherhood. Your 7 month old does have a major case of separation anxiety - she is attached to you and that is a good thing. This is normal - trust me. It is difficult and can seem like it will never end, but it will and you will look back on this with some sadness. No, it is not your husband's fault, it is just what babies do with the primary caregiver - they attach. Attachment is what will ensure she develops into a happy, healthy child. What to do for your 7 month old with separation anxiety?? Take breaks and encourage your husband to find his place - my husband took over the night routine - bathing, storytime or rocking/song, until it becomes their time together. As for breaks - I know it is hard to hear your child screaming their little head off as you walk out the door, but they will adjust and it is very important that you have some time to yourself. My youngest is now 2 and 8 months and he still kicks up a fuss when I go (I'm a SAHM) but apparently it lasts about 2 minutes. Both my boys were MommaBoys and it was sooo hard (more with the first - I soon realized that they would survive and I needed a break in order to be a good mom). But now they go off with Daddy with hardly a glance at me - breaks my heart (well, not really). So I guess what I am trying to say is, it is a normal developmental stage and, while difficult, it actually means you and your baby are securely attached. Don't worry too much about your 7 month old's separation anxiety and the calmer you are about it, the easier it will be on all of you.

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Samantha - posted on 06/07/2012

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its good for your child to know that mum can leave but mum comes back in older children we use a timer to show how long mums going to be away but for a baby its hard to do this so leaving baby for half hr and coming back making sure we make no fase that i am leaving and just cuddles when i get back.

you baby well lern that mummy goes away and mummy comes back in most case kids only cry when u can see and here them and settal very quickly once u cant see them its more to make u feel bad you are leavling them not because they are up set.

Lisa - posted on 01/10/2012

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My daughter used to be the same way and still is at times. Its difficult to do but if you have a babysitter watch her when you go out say good bye to her and dont make it a long drawn out process when you do say bye and leave the house she will get used to you leaving. Also I was holding my daughter constantly I dont know if you are or not but if you do give her some time with you without constantly holding her that can help also.

Jackie - posted on 08/19/2009

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My daughter was the same way have patience it's just a phase that some of them go thru eventually it will get better my daughter is now 17 months & she's doing so much better.

Cindy - posted on 08/19/2009

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when mine were young i used to play hide and seek with them even at 7 months they can see you ,so you seperate from them, with the person you want to watch them sitting in the room ,by walking out the door first for only a few seconds then walk in and encourage her/him with a "mommys back "do it a couple of times till he/she begins to have fun with it...next walk into the other room this time a little longer 30 seconds or so..repeat the process till you can be out of the room for up to 15 minutes they get it after awhile that youll be back . may take a few attempts but in the long run well worth it. my 18 month old granddaughter now waves to her mommy when mommy leaves .just make sure to kiss them goodbye and kiss them hello .it may not help at first but it will.just be patient

Denise - posted on 08/19/2009

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Quoting Jenna:

Help!! 7 month old with major separation anxiety

My daughter is 7 months old with separation anxiety. HELP!!! She doesnt want to go to anyone besides me. No one can babysit her without her crying/screaming the whole time. Not even my sisters or even husband. I think it might be partially my husbands fault because he doesnt hold her much, doesn't feed her, doesnt change diapers, and cant put her to bed at night. I dont know what to do my 7 month old's separation anxiety is so bad. I cant get out of the house without her or having whoever is watching her get stressed. Any suggestions on getting her able to be watched by others??



I suggest you leave her with your husband or sister in  30 mintues time spans for at least a week, also make sure you do it everyday if you just go walking or leave the house to the store or something. this  will reinsure her that you are coming back also talk to her "mommy is leaving now and I will be back shortly" then the 2nd week 1 hr and so forth. You also might want to do it around the same time. by the way my name is Denise and I work as a Childcare Director and I advise parents that enrolled their children with this same seperation anxiety to do the same.

Summer - posted on 08/19/2009

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I had a similar situation and I was told to take a blanket and spray it with my perfume if you dont want to do that sleep with it for couple days and leave it with your baby it worked for me.

Emma - posted on 08/19/2009

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Yes it is a normal thing for some babies and toddlers even an older child to go through. But if you would really like some me time and every mother needs it it will take a little training and time. Yes it is good to an extent that your child id attached to you but it is also restricting and can be over bearing. It can also be detramental when it is excessive.
What happens if you end up in hospital and no one can satisfy your little one. This will ease after a few days of crying and confusion but may also make your child feel abandoned and have trust issues. yes this is the extreme but it happens. Maybe see your child health clinic on the best ways to change this behaviour. One idea is start at home with you in the same room but at a distance, constantly let bub know you are there and before bub actually cries go over gently touch her talk to her calm so she feels safe gradually make the time you are away longer and once you have a few minutes progress the distance as well. If you always talk she knows you are there and will eventually relax. Also when you get going do put in times when you aren't talking to her. When you go to another room remember to talk a little louder so she can hear. Eventually you can hang washing out, have a shower etc without to much problem. At some stages as you go along have someone else in the room talking to her gently touching her cheek so she also gets use to someone else. If you think your mum is going to be the most likely baby sitter then ask her to come over a couple of times a week to help with the process. The other thing is when people visit don't shield her from them let them s pick her up but if she get don't directly take her. Ask them to put her back down where she was and then go over and reasure her gently calm her down.
This process can take anywhere from a few day to weeks it really depends on the baby and how much you want some me time it canbe a tiring process but rewarding to see a more happy and content baby in any situation.

[deleted account]

I sooooo understand your pain!! I went through the same thing with my daughter until she was 14 months old. she would cry and hyperventilate every time i left the room.....i couldn't even go to the bathroom by myself. also, when she went down for a nap, i had to stay in the same room because she would wake up if i left!! (she started napping in the living room so i could get something done). it was really bad. we were never apart and i nearly went crazy!!



as for the fix,your hubby is VERY important in helping with your 7 month old's separation anxiety. also, if you have a family member or good friend that is willing to help, that is good.

i left my daughter with dad for an hour while i went for a walk (she cried and cried and he wanted a drink as soon as i got back!!) then a few days later i dropped her off at a friends for a couple hours (she layed on the floor and cryed the whole time again) and i had daddy pick her up. this was the first time they really bonded....she was so glad to have him "save" her!! it may take a few time, but it REALLY helped.



after that, she was okay with dad, although she still didn't want me to leave. daddy started giving me a couple hours to myself each weekend and over time it got much better. it was hard for my husband to spend time with her at first, but he finally realized how hard of a time i was having, and every time i left, it got better.

[deleted account]

i have a 18 month old and she has never been watched by anyone yet because she is attached to me an my partner. i have been going down and staying at my mothers place to stay for a couple of days with my young one and she is getting used to satying with grandma i think if you let your young one get really used to the person you want to baby sit it should work.

Jenna - posted on 08/19/2009

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Thanks i just wish it was easier for people to watch her. I feel bad for them too!

Miranda - posted on 08/19/2009

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I am having the same problem with my 9 month old she will stay with my husband but usually when I want to go somewhere I want him to go with me! I need help too!

Denise - posted on 08/19/2009

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Quoting Jenna:

Help!! 7 month old with major separation anxiety

My daughter is 7 months old with separation anxiety. HELP!!! She doesnt want to go to anyone besides me. No one can babysit her without her crying/screaming the whole time. Not even my sisters or even husband. I think it might be partially my husbands fault because he doesnt hold her much, doesn't feed her, doesnt change diapers, and cant put her to bed at night. I dont know what to do my 7 month old's separation anxiety is so bad. I cant get out of the house without her or having whoever is watching her get stressed. Any suggestions on getting her able to be watched by others??



I suggest you leave her with your husband or sister in  30 mintues time spans for at least a week, also make sure you do it everyday if you just go walking or leave the house to the store or something. this  will reinsure her that you are coming back also talk to her "mommy is leaving now and I will be back shortly" then the 2nd week 1 hr and so forth. You also might want to do it around the same time. by the way my name is Denise and I work as a Childcare Director and I advise parents that enrolled their children with this same seperation anxiety to do the same.

[deleted account]

I sooooo understand your pain!! I went through the same thing with my daughter until she was 14 months old. she would cry and hyperventilate every time i left the room.....i couldn't even go to the bathroom by myself. also, when she went down for a nap, i had to stay in the same room because she would wake up if i left!! (she started napping in the living room so i could get something done). it was really bad. we were never apart and i nearly went crazy!!



as for the fix,your hubby is VERY important in helping with your 7 month old's separation anxiety. also, if you have a family member or good friend that is willing to help, that is good.

i left my daughter with dad for an hour while i went for a walk (she cried and cried and he wanted a drink as soon as i got back!!) then a few days later i dropped her off at a friends for a couple hours (she layed on the floor and cryed the whole time again) and i had daddy pick her up. this was the first time they really bonded....she was so glad to have him "save" her!! it may take a few time, but it REALLY helped.



after that, she was okay with dad, although she still didn't want me to leave. daddy started giving me a couple hours to myself each weekend and over time it got much better. it was hard for my husband to spend time with her at first, but he finally realized how hard of a time i was having, and every time i left, it got better.

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