If your child is starting a new daycare or moving to a new classroom, parents may find that leaving their children has become more difficult than usual. Although not all children experience separation anxiety, it is very common for children to get upset when saying goodbye to their families. Although it can be very unsettling for a parent, families should remember that going through separation anxiety is developmentally typical. To help their child through this developmental stage, families need to understand what drives separation anxiety and how to identify the coping tools that work best for their family.
What is separation anxiety?
Children’s separation anxiety can be triggered by many different factors, but at the end of the day, children experience separation anxiety when they are separated by their primary caregivers, whom they trust, and with whom they feel most comfortable. Families can experience this when they go to work, leave it in the room, or sometimes even when they leave the room. When you try to leave, your child may become clingy, start crying, or have a tantrum.
Separation anxiety can start from infancy and last into the preschool years, while some children may never experience it. Children will also experience varying degrees of separation anxiety. For example, some children may experience it when their parents leave them, even if it is just to go to another room in the house, while other children may only experience it when big life changes occur, such as starting a new school. .
How to Battle Separation Anxiety
Watching your child get angry when you leave can be very unsettling for parents, but there are some ways to help ease your child’s separation anxiety.
If you know a big change is coming that could trigger separation anxiety in your child, like starting on a, prepare ahead of time. At Educational Playcare, we encourage families to schedule visits before the first day, so their children can become familiar with the environment and their teachers before they start working full time. This helps your child feel part of a trusted community that is one of a kind.
Create quick goodbye routines. This could be something as simple as a cute goodbye phrase, getting your child ready with a book and blanket, or creating a special handshake when you leave. Whatever you decide, keep your goodbye short and sweet. The longer you stay, the more angry your child will be when it is time to leave. Be consistent. Once you establish a delivery routine, do your best to stay on track every day. This may be difficult to do at first, but eventually your child will wait for you during this time and the consistency will help decrease your child’s anxiety. Keep your promises. Some families like to help ease their children’s anxiety by telling them when they will return. If you do, be sure to keep your promises, as this will help build your child’s confidence when you are apart.
It is important for families to remember that experiencing separation anxiety is a normal part of young children’s development. If you have any concerns regarding your child’s separation anxiety, please speak with your child’s pediatrician, who can provide additional support and resources.