Understanding Your Child’s Separation Anxiety

Parents calm crying girl on walk in summer garden. Girl sits in lap at father.

Leaving your child in the capable arms of your nanny can be an emotional struggle if they experience separation anxiety. This emotions is very common in toddlers; they do not yet understand the concept of time and do not comprehend when you will return. The feeling is brought on by basic survival instincts — children are dependent on their primary caregiver. Understanding your child’s separation anxiety can help you both overcome the fears and emotions of spending time apart.

Recognize the Signs

Young children experiencing separation anxiety will exhibit easily recognizable signs. Your child may cry, cling to you, resist encouragement from your nanny or caregiver or even throw a tantrum. The climax of the outbursts usually occur as soon as the parent or primary caregiver has left the room. Your child may also experience separation anxiety if you walk out of view for a short period or when they are tucked in at bedtime.

Calm the Anxiety

Having a child that struggles with separation anxiety can be emotionally exhausting for parents. Implementing calming techniques will help you to ease your child’s fears and give you peace of mind.

Never sneak out. Your child will notice your absence eventually and wonder why you have disappeared. Be clear that you are leaving and let your toddler see you go. Tell your child the reason for your absence, such as work or higher education. Be sure to reiterate that your nanny or caregiver is a safe, fun individual who is a positive in your child’s life.

Do not say things that you do not mean. If you tell your child that you will just be in the other room, they are going to believe you. Your toddler will take comfort in the fact that you always keep your word. Never make a promise that you cannot keep.

Make time to be attentive to your child’s feelings. Handing your child over to your nanny and walking away will not calm the anxiety. Instead, give yourself plenty of time to talk with your child and help them work through their emotions. Sitting with your child allows them to take in their surroundings without feeling stressed by your rushed behavior.

When to Worry

Even though dealing with your child experiencing separation anxiety can be very difficult, it is a normal emotion, and most children overcome the emotions on their own. You should be concerned if your child experiences extreme symptoms, such as hyperventilation or vomiting. If you feel that your child’s separation anxiety is abnormal, be sure to consult your physician. Your doctor will lead you on the right path to helping your child overcome extreme anxiety.

A great nanny can be an excellent asset in the task of calming separation anxiety. Easing the minds of parents and children is a part of the expertise of professional nanny services. Opti-mum is committed to providing excellent caregivers to minimize the negative experience of separation anxiety. To find a great nanny for your child, visit our nanny services page and contact an Opti-mum representative.

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