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KansasTherapist
KansasTherapist, LSCSW
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 566
Experience:  17 years experience with depression, abuse, and borderline.
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Our 2 year old grandson recently returned from a week long

Resolved Question:

Our 2 year old grandson recently returned from a week long vistiation with his father. Since his return he has not been sleeping well, seems upset and is unsettled. He is scheduled to have a 10 day visit to his father in Aug. What length of time would you recommend for a 2 year old to be away from his mom?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  KansasTherapist replied 4 years ago.

KansasTherapist : Hello
KansasTherapist : Virtually all children are unsettled by being out of their usual environment. Visits with non-custodial parents is definately one of the times this happens. Many parents worry that different behaviors after a visit mean it was a bad visit, but generally, this isn't the case.
KansasTherapist : A 10 day visit for a 2 year old is on the long side but it vsries from one child to another and whether he is just turned 2, 2 and a half, or almost 3. It also depends on how close his relationship is with his dad.
KansasTherapist : Does this help?
Customer:

Hello. He turned 2 May 23. The realtionship ...it does not seem that the dad has bonded but is still just angry. When picking up and saying good bye no emotional hugs or closeness. Just going through the motions. The extended family does not seem glad to see him either.


 

KansasTherapist : That's going to make it hard for the little guy.
KansasTherapist : He may have a hard time. He may also make it hard for his dad, who will have to deal with a fussy kid.
Customer:

Are there any guidelines to follow for length of stay?


 

KansasTherapist : Consistency is more important that length of stay. If he has a visit every other weekend or 10 days once a month, it's best if it's always the same.
Customer:

Ok. But no professional guidelines since this was a summer visit and so is the August visit and then the schedule returns to everyother weekend and then alternating holidays but for much shorter time periods.

Customer:
KansasTherapist : The longer time for a summer visit should be okay. I understand your fears, with his father being angry and having alcohol issues. It's hard to see a little one go.
KansasTherapist : These things are often more difficult for the adults than the child.
Customer:

hmmm. Long term affects and his sense of well-being and trust? Ok thanks

KansasTherapist : When kids have a predictable schedule, they can accommodate the changes. So many kids now live with divorce, it seems normal to them.
KansasTherapist : If Dad has family support, it will really help.
KansasTherapist : Do you want to discuss this more?
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