Have you ever experienced separation anxiety with your little one? I understand it is so difficult for you to leave them alone even for a toilet break! It can be very frustrating and exhausting for parents and child , but rest assured , it does not mean you are doing something wrong by abandoning them for a few minutes.
It might that your baby never wanting to be put down or your toddler cling to you at your legs whenever you leave the bedroom! Dont worry… I want you to know this is absolutely normal and it is a natural and good sign of your childs development. Typically, after 6 months old, your baby is starting to develop the concept of object permanence, babies begin to understand that you still exist and you are not there physically with them, which is a new thing to a baby! Please remember your child is not crying out to you why did you abandon me? ! We got to remember, there are many moments we cant be together with our child. ( at daycare, at grandmas or running an important errands).
It is normal separation anxiety may concern most of us as parents, especially when we are transitioning our child to babysitters care or even teaching your child to learn to sleep independently. Do not fret, if your baby is experiencing separation anxiety at bedtime, here are some tips you can help to lessen the effects of separation anxiety and make easier for everyone to handle your little one!
Create a soothing bedtime routine.
If you have not create a bedtime ritual for your baby or toddler, time to do so, bring your bedtime earlier for 15 mins so you can spend longer time with your child. This will help your child to relax before bedtime, ie: a bath, lullaby, a story book, prayer, switch off the light and lay your baby down into her cot. This will provide your child security and predictability when bedtime arrives.
Introduce a lovey/stuffed toy to your child.
Your child can learn by watching and hearing too! You can leave one stuffed toy or lovey in your childs cot. Your child can watch and hear you saying goodbye to the stuffed toy before laying him down.
Do not sneak away!
It may be seem easier to slip out of the door when your child is distracted. This is totally a big no! It heightens your childs separation anxiety and makes it more difficult for your child to fall asleep. Be lovingly upfront and assure him you are leaving and will be back again to pick him up in the morning.
Be consistent with your approach.
If your baby is crying very hard at bedtime, feel free to comfort him, calm your baby and reassure him that you will be back again. We want to assure him that we will return again, the more you practise, the more your baby will understand and learn by repetition. Trust your baby/toddler, he can understand a lot more than you might think.
Now we understand, seperation anxiety is normal in a childs development. However, it is exhausting and it triggers us (especially hearing babys cry) when you are running on a low sleep tank, right? If you still constantly struggle with your childs sleep in general, thats why we are here for, do not be afraid to seek help. Book a FREE discovery call with us today.