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  Separation Anxiety – Reason
 
Ever since my baby was very little, we have regularly left her with a baby sitter. This has never been a problem, until recently. Somehow, the crying and tears when we leave make our cherished night out a lot less fun! Should we give up the socials until she is a bit more secure?

It is really a good idea that you have managed to have grown up nights out on a regular basis. You really need that kind of event to remember that you are a couple, as well as being parents. So giving up these events would not be a good idea. However, maybe knowing that this is a normal part of growing up and developing will help you cope with the drama.

Very small babies do not have the ability to think about you when you are not present. Just the same way that a dropped toy ceases to exist for them, so when you are out of sight, you are also out of mind. However, as baby matures she starts to be able to look for a toy that she has dropped, and she also looks for you when you are not present. In addition, her ability to be mobile can be a bit scary for her, and she maintains her security by venturing just far enough away from you to be able to toddle back and check that you still exist.

Babies also do not have any concept of time. So if you leave, the baby has no idea of how long you will be way, or if you are ever coming back. It’s a scary thought. Which makes it a little easier to understand all the fuss every time you leave. However, if you never leave her, she will never have the chance to learn that although you leave, you do come back. So a baby that stays with a baby sitter will gradually learn through experience that goodbye is not forever, and will become more confident. Some babies start to feel anxious about being left alone as young as seven months. Changes in the living environment, such as a house move or a new baby sitter, can be enough to trigger this behaviour. There is no way to predict how long it will last. For some babies it is months, but unfortunately some babies do take years to find their confidence.

See also:

Seperation anxiety - Minimising

 
   
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