How do i get my 3 year old son to not panick everytime i leave the room??

Anushka - posted on 09/15/2009 ( 10 moms have responded )

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It is actually quite hindersome to my day & his, as everytime i leave the room,even to go to to the bathroom, he cries & begs me not to leave & has to follow me..he doesnt allow anyone, not even my husband, to do anything for him & insists that MUM must do it for him..

he has just come back from a lengthy stay with my parents while i worked and now it seems he doesnt trust i will return to him.

It seems better when he is at creche but as soon as i walk through the door, i cant leave him for a second...Any help???

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Sally - posted on 09/15/2009

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When mine got clingy I used to leave something important of mine with him so he knew I'd be back - usually meant taking off my watch or a bracelet and asking him to look after it carefully while I went to the bathroom. He seemed quite proud that I would ask him to help and it distracted him for a couple of minutes. He then began to trust that when I said I would only be a minute that I meant it. I also allowed him to call out to me and I would answer so he would know I was close but didn't feel the need to attach himself to my leg.

Valarie - posted on 09/15/2009

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My daughter did very similar things at that age... so I think it's completely a normal thing! It DID get very frusterating, I mean, I think we all like to go to the bathroom with a little privacy. :)



It just took a LOT of reassuring with her... and I would keep talking after I left the room she was in, so she could hear me. (That helped a little.) We constantly reminded her that no one was going to leave her anywhere alone, let alone not come back for her. It (unfortunately) took a few months, but she finally caught on and now she pratically pushes us out the door when we take her somewhere (pre-school, grandma's, etc).



Good luck!

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Amanda - posted on 09/15/2009

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Aw, it is all ok, you just need to be STRONG and tell him he is ok. The more times you leave and seperate your self from him and come back even if it is for 10 minutes, the more he will realize mom is not leaving. You need to just leave him with his dad and leave the room let him see you walk away, but tell him he is ok and daddy needs to tell him that to and dad needs to just start playing with toys or put a movie in with a smile on his face, act goofy, thiings that dads are good for :) in time he will be ok, and you will have your sanity back. You have to be STRONG :) good luck

Tiffiny - posted on 09/15/2009

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Mykids used to do this to me everytime I left it broke my heart each time, but then my mother in law showed me something, she told me to act as if I were leaving then listen outside the window and within 5 minutes the kids were distracted and off to something else, with my kids it was a control thing they thought if they cried mommie would stay (cause I did so many times) Hope this helps.

Anushka - posted on 09/15/2009

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Thanks Kristine that didhelp.. u so rite it does break my heart but i got to be a strong mummy... thank u so much

Kristine - posted on 09/15/2009

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Stand your ground. He has got to learn that others can take just as good as care of him too. As for you leaving this worked for my 1st. daughter. (she was the same way)When I had to leave the house I always made good eyecontact with her and told her mommy will be back and have him repeat that. Say it several times. He will cry but guess what he stops shortly after you leave they always do. It hurts like hell to leave when they cry like that but in the end he needs to understand that its ok for mom to leave cause she always will come back to him. for the 1st couple of times bring him back a suprise. Don't let him be the boss. Or your life is going to get much more stressfull. Hope I helped :)

Diane - posted on 09/15/2009

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its not really surprising that he is feeling anxious about you leaving when you have said you left him for a "lengthy time" for work,,,,,,,,,,perhaps he feels everytime you leave will be just as lengthy. work on some time recognition with him and then use it to let him know that when you go to the bathroom you will be gone for 2 minutes etc.....but if he needs to go with you to the bathroom why not ? seems he is feeling very insecure about your precence, do all you can to make him feel more secure and he will be happy for you to be out of his sight for a little while, if he doesnt its going to make going to kinder very tricky :-)

Lynne - posted on 09/15/2009

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My youngest son has been having some these issues. He was really settled in his day care and outgoing. We had to change carers recently & he had become clingy all over again.

He was worse if he had been in care for consecutive days or if we had been busy and not in our usual home routine. I made sure that when at home I told him what I was going to do if I left the room. So he knew I wasn't leaving. e.g. "Mummy is going to hang the washing on the line and I will be right back...." I also offered for him to do a lot of things with me, rather than try and avoid him following me. It seemed to be a bit of reverse psychology. If he thought I wasn't trying to sneak away and that he was in control of being left or not, then he would quite often choose not to join me. I also made sure I spent some real quality time, reading, sitting and playing during the days that we were home, between care. Not all day, but some time specially devoted to just the 2 of us. It seemed as though it was really about being tired and missing being at home with me, so this special time with my attention worked really well to get him back on track.

I also found that he didn't want his Dad to help him and comfort him. At times I would remove myself from the situation, so that he had no choice but to let his father do it. (Go outside or into another room, where he couldn't get to me) Often I found that if he didn't have the choice of either of us, he would let his Dad help. In turn he realised he could get comfort from his father as well as me. If he knew that I was going to step in and take over, he would make sure he kicked up a fuss until he got his way. I found like the other post, that keeping the conversation going while out of the room worked really well also.

We still have our bad days every now and then, depending on how tired he is. Mostly we have it under control and he is a happy, outgoing little 2 yr old.

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Just keep talking to him as you go into the other room....tell him where you are going...like mommy has to go to the bathroom...or to the kitchen....and then keep talking to him as you leave the room.

Anushka - posted on 09/15/2009

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Thanks Valarie... great advice.. and thanks for the reassurance.., glad to hear ur little angel is miss independent!!

Have a great one!

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