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Carol Kryder LMFT
Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 808
Experience:  APA Board Certified, Diplomate,Substance Abuse Professional, 20 years family therapy experience
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I have been practicing the attachment parenting method. Recently,

Resolved Question:

I have been practicing the attachment parenting method. Recently, we had to start to a day care and my little 11 month old is displaying seperation anxiety and doesn't want to let me go. If/when I leave, he wants to be held all the time which the day care staff doesn't want to. I stayed with him at the day care for the last week so that he can see that I trust the people there, but now the staff wants me to leave him with them for the day. I don't want him to turn into a clingy child who gets what he wants by crying. What do I do?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Carol Kryder LMFT replied 6 years ago.
Hello:

I am afraid that they only way you can prevent him from turning into a clingy child who gets what he wants by crying is to gently but firmly tell him that he will stay with the people at day care and that you will be back after his nap (or whatever event occurs just as you will pick him up). It is best to be concrete about when you will come.

He will cry and be clingy, but the staff can validate his feelings without giving in to them. He will cry less and less and finally get used to it. Just don't let your guilt show when you pick him up. You must act happy and cheerful when you drop him off and pick him up. This is a matter of repetition and consistency. I agree with the staff that you need to leave him for the day.

He will get used to this, I promise. This will hurt you much more than it hurts him, and he will forget about it much sooner and more completely than you will. The worst part of parenting is when we hurt our children to help them. An example is when he gets his inoculations. He doesn't understand why he is being hurt, but you know it is to prevent a much worse problem. It is the same thing with day care.

My best to you and your family.
Warmest regards,
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thank you for your quick response. I really do appreciate it. I am worried however about the future complications of what you wrote about what will eventually happen:

"He will cry and be clingy, but the staff can validate his feelings without giving in to them. He will cry less and less and finally get used to it." I understand but, that sounds like turning him into an orphan who will not show emotions...I read everywhere that the first 2 years of their life is very important for the infants to become trusting, confident adults. If he is forced into cry by himself, will it affect him later on?

 

Thank you again,

Expert:  Carol Kryder LMFT replied 6 years ago.
I didn't say he would cry by himself. I said the staff would validate his feelings which means comforting him, then encouraging him to participate in activities by distracting him. That will not cause lasting damage.

If the staff is not willing to comfort him and direct him to play then you need to find another day care.
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